January 02, 2012
Perhaps this is my "I'm going to be healthy!" resolution. I also made one of those this year, but a bit different. We'll see how things go.
Anyway, way to go, Internet. Another year or not destroying the world. HIGH FIVES.
April 05, 2011
I know it’s been a while since I’ve been able to chat, but that’s with good reason. First we’ve been in the process of shifting gears from the Illini and NCAA basketball into NHL Playoffs. So now TW at the BB is officially all Red Wings, all the time.
And then this happened.
My guess is that Richmond had eligibility issues and to prevent any further penalties being assessed to either party, Weber benched Richmond for the NCAA tourney games against UNLV and Kansas. The cause of these issues in turn never got resolved, and both sides agreed it would be best to part ways, and that Richmond going to the NBA was the best way to do this without harming anyone’s reputation.
So what does this mean for the 2011-2012 Illini?
Questions surrounding what lead to Richmond’s benching in the tournament and his status with the program had potential to be a major distraction for the team next year. Nipping this issue in the bud could help prevent a long complicated season of off-court issues.
With that said, losing of player of Richmond’s potential will sting especially with 4 starting seniors also departing. On the floor Richmond was a fantastic rebounder with a Rodman-esque presence around the rim. (Without any kind of formal statistics in front of me, I’m going to estimate that 85% of his baskets came from put-backs on offensive rebounds.) Richmond also had a cockiness and swagger that this team has been lacking since Dee Brown was rocking Assembly Hall. He will be tough to replace.
I think the biggest loser in all of this is going to be Weber. I’ve long been a supporter of Weber and always liked him as a coach. We all know about his struggles with recruiting, especially the in-state players. Richmond was the first big catch Weber pulled in and it began a trend of the top in-state players finding their way back to Champaign. Despite the disappointment of this past year, winning a tournament game was big enough to consider this season not a failure (I still won’t go so far as to call it a success), but this situation loomed like a black cloud over the program. I think this is going to sting and impact Weber’s reputation among the fans for retaining top talent. This will add another log on the fire under his seat for next year, and unless the Illini are able to meet our expectation of the program, next year will be his last.
March 20, 2011
March 19, 2011
UNLV – 62
ILLINI – 73
I’m bursting with absolute giddy about this win. We dominated an opponent the way this team was built to dominate an opponent – tough interior defense, transition buckets, and clutch shooting. That style of play has eluded us for a better portion of the year, but it finally returned at a very opportune time tonight. Individually, McCamey played like a man possessed with 17 points to accompany his 7 assists. DJ Richardson also broke out of a cold funk with a very productive offensive-15 minutes (10 points, 2-2 on treys) while being able to resume his roll as a lockdown defender.
But with a top-seeded Kansas team coached by you-know-who waiting in the 3rd round, I can’t let this optimism carry me too far. If anything, this team is far from consistent as evidenced by their inability to win consecutive games since early January. Awww, screw it. We won as a lower seed in the tournament for only the 2nd time in history, and boy was it ever a convincing win. I don’t know about you, but I’m going to kick back and enjoy the hell out of it. Call me mad; let the good times roll.
I L L - I N I
March 10, 2011
My recent television obsession with Parks and Recreation (Ron Swanson is a model American and my personal hero) has almost distracted me from the excitement building inside of me for the most wonderful time of the year. It’s MARCH MADNESS! Holy crap do I love this time of year. In fact, convincing my employers for a work holiday party to take place on the first day of the tournament (which also happens to be St. Patrick’s Day. EPIC) is perhaps the crowning achievement of my 7-year tenure with the firm. I’m going to have a resume just for this moment.
But anyway, my ILLINI have often been a tease offering glimmers of false hope only to take my breath and sanity away by blowing it in the most frustrating way possible. But that stops here. I’m going to say this here and now in a public forum: the ILLINI are going to have an amazing postseason. I feel it. This team has the talent to be special and loved forever, and I think they are going to do it. I really do. While this homer has been drinking the Kool-Aid, I truly, deep in my heart believe it.
I-L-L , Bitches. It’s GAMEDAY!!!!!!!!!!!
Image via http://www.sportslogos.net/
March 01, 2011
Spring is here! Time to warm up and clean up the mess you've been kicking aside for the past 9 months. After the Illini loss tonight (L ß Sad Face) I decided to dry my tears with some much-needed organizing and cleaning. Unfortunately, this particular form of cleaning is usually monumental because it’s the only season really dedicated to cleaning. During summer life springs eternal with day drinking outside and running every opportunity. Fall and winter are the time to gather and collect all the crap that you need to get through the winter months. So now it’s time to shed some nonsense and clean the closet (literally!) as well as underneath the bed, behind the dresser, organizing files, etc. I just hope the dust buffalo don’t stampede and kill me in the process.
February 01, 2011
For those of you that don’t know, (or haven’t seen my wardrobe), I attended the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. I played trombone in the Marching Illini and Illini Basketball Band. I attended all but maybe a handful of football and basketball (mens and womens) games during my 5 years while a student. To say I like the Illini is an understatement.
Or until recently, anyway.
You see, my fandom has always danced that fine line between extreme and obsession. Half of my wardrobe consists of orange articles of clothing. Not only is orange clothing rare, I actually have to make an effort to not wear something orange. Have you ever done a load of laundry consisting of ONLY orange clothing? Didn’t think so.
Today is special for a reason that I’m ashamed to admit: for the first time in the last 13 years, I did not wear orange on the same day that the Illini had a basketball game. I guess I should take a few steps back here; win or lose, for the longest time the excitement I got from watching the games and the ties it had to the best 5 years of my life made Gameday the happiest day of the year. The fact it happened 30 times a year made it even better; its like Christmas happening twice a month.
But this year something different happened to me that shook my very foundation. I lost enjoyment watching this basketball team. Huh? What? (Record Scratch!) No, I still enjoy college basketball and love sports in general, but to quote a tweet I saw online, watching this Illini team places the viewer firmly in a “No-Fun Zone.” Their effort and performance on the court have certainly not lived up to the expectations they set with their victory at Gonzaga. I questioned why I would put so much energy and effort into a team when I didn’t think their efforts were worthy of my efforts to be a fan.
So I punished them by watching the game tonight instead of going. (Snowmageddon had a minor role in this decision to not use my season ticket). And just when I thought they couldn’t stoop any lower, they played “decent” and “with energy” to TOTALLY REDEEM THEMSELVES!
So if anyone has tickets to the game at Northwestern this weekend, I’d be interested.
While the CPA, tech gadgets, 3 video game systems and love of cartoons all help with my nerd credentials, my music collection certifies my nerdiness double platinum. (See what I did there? Classic). Classical. Alternative. Hip Hop. Electronic. House. Classic Rock. Country. You name it, and you can probably find it in my music collection. To give you an idea, my iTunes collection currently stands at 8617 songs, 73.33GB, with a play time of 26:06:44:39, whatever that is, and there are still probably 50-60 CD’s in a binder that have yet to make their way to the digital library. It’s taken me almost 20 years to amass that type of collection. Some certainly stick out more than others, but we’re going to discuss one of them:
1994. Weezer. Blue Album.
This album is special to me for many reasons. The obvious is, of course, this album is ballz awesome. If you do not
like love this album, we cannot be friends. This was the first album that turned into an absolute obsession for me. I had my mom drive me to Record Swap in downtown Homewood to purchase this album and I instantly fell in love. I could listen to this album three times in a row and never get bored with it. Later, my friends and I would jam out “Say It Ain’t So” and the “Undone: The Sweater Song” in Collin’s basement over and over again. So when I found out that Weezer was going on the Memories Tour playing the Blue Album and Pinkerton in their entirety, well it was something I very well couldn’t miss.
To say these shows rocked is an absolute understatement. The pure energy in the crowds as well as on stage made both shows a true rock experience. While there I couldn’t help but think of us back in Collin’s basement. As good as I would like to think we were, the real deal is so much better. So high fives to Weezer, The Greatest band that ever lived.
January 03, 2011
Why hello there, 2011. No, please, you’re not imposing on anything at all. You see, 2010 and I are just friends. Well, we were friends. We met about a year ago, and we both had such high expectations for each other. I thought 2010 would be the one, the final piece to the puzzle. Everything started so smoothly for the two of us – nothing but smiles and sunshine all over the place. But as you can expect no romance is free of drama, and well, recently we began to grow apart. I feel like I changed, hopefully for the better, but I am not quite sure, really.
You, baby, you’re totally different. I just have this good feeling about you. Yes, I know we just met, but sometimes you just know when something feels right. Awww, come back darling, I didn’t mean to scare you off; I just got caught up in the moment. So why don’t you come over here, next to me on the couch, and we can get to know each other a little better.
Can I get you anything? Some tea? Something to eat? Perhaps a hug? No, ok, just wanted to offer – if you change your mind let me know.
You know what, rather than any forced conversation, let’s just spend what precious time we have together right now and see what happens; no plans, no timeline, no expectations. Great, I’m glad you like this plan and I too am excited to be a part of it. I’m looking forward to our little adventure, wherever it may take us….
Happy New Year Everyone.
December 19, 2010
This week is my favorite week of the year. Just look at this schedule:
Monday, December 20th – Orlando Siblings Birthday Bowling Bash
Wednesday December 22nd – Braggin Rights game Illinois vs Missouri
Friday December 24th – Christmas Eve
Saturday December 25th – Jesus returns to Earth to buy an iPad and get in line for the post holiday sales
What I love most about this week is that the closer you get to the holidays everyone seems to be in a good mood. (For myself this was particularly true this year since I got all of my shopping done much earlier in the year than in prior years. I’ve been done for almost 2 weeks now, and after driving past the stores the afternoon I couldn’t be more relieved that this is the case. ) Last night my neighbors had a holiday party and it was just a fabulous time. Delicious baked goods, adult beverages, and holiday cheer were all in abundance for everyone to enjoy. While I only knew a handful of people there, it was still very easy to chat up a conversation with total strangers. There is something about this time of year that just seems to get people into a good mood. Honest – I do believe that it was all holiday spirit and had nothing to do with the delicious libations that everyone was consuming in excessive quantities. Altruistic or not, it makes a better story.
So as you’re bouncing around the stores last minute looking for that perfect gift before settling on a gift card, remember that you should be all smiles while you’re doing it.