March 25, 2005

Link-O-Rama (and the iPod Shuffle Aftermath)

  • Here's an actual excerpt from an instant message conversation I had with my mom yesterday morning:
    Aaron Gleeman: Loads and loads of porn, most likely.

    It's better if I leave out all context, trust me. And yes, I realize that's not an actual link, but it does set things up nicely for ...

  • ... speaking of instant message conversations, the person behind the green door at Defamer chatted it up with comedian/actor David Cross via IM and the result is ... well, it's pretty damn funny. I was a big Cross fan after seeing his HBO comedy special a few years ago, but then I heard him sit in on the "news" a few months ago on Howard Stern's radio show and he was absolutely awful. He also tends to bore me when he goes off on his long political rants. With that said (I have something nice I wanted to say about him ... be patient), he makes up for all of that with his "IMterview" with Defamer.
  • Speaking of my mom, she was quoted in the Minneapolis Star Tribune the other day.
  • Friend of AG.com Will Young penned the Minnesota Twins preview over at Baseball Think Factory. Once upon a time I wrote the Twins preview over there (back when it was Baseball Primer), a fact that really has nothing whatsoever to do with Will's preview (which is quite good, as readers of his blog would expect).

    On a related note, now that I'm finished with the Top 50 Prospects series, the next thing on my agenda for The Hardball Times is my Twins preview. You would think writing a few thousand words about the Twins would be easy for me, but it is more difficult than you'd imagine trying to come up with new and exciting ways to say that Luis Rivas stinks year after year.

  • Friend of AG.com Eric Neel has a great guest piece on Dodgers announcer Vin Scully over at The Baseball Analysts. I obviously didn't grow up listening to Scully or anything like that, but from the moment I first heard him doing Dodgers games on MLB Extra Innings for DirecTV a few seasons back, I was absolutely hooked. I find that the majority if sports announcers annoy me a great deal, but I will literally watch an LA game simply because Scully is calling it.
  • Remember good old Bobby Kielty, the guy I thought was going to be a star? Turns out he apparently went insane.
  • One of the longest-running baseball bloggers, Geoff Young, has moved his fantastic Padres blog, Ducksnorts, over to the All-Baseball.com family. If you hurry up and go there right now you can see Geoff looking the best he has ever looked.
  • I'm not sure how I feel about this, but friend of AG.com Paul Katcher recently named this blog one of "26 Essential Sites for Yankees Fans." I'm willing to forgive Paul because he made a Seinfeld reference while saying something nice about me, but to be honest I'm a little uncomfortable being recommended as a place for Yankees fans. I'm kidding, of course. Sort of.
  • Is anyone else who watches Inside the NBA really weirded out by the fact that Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith constantly talked about what might happen in the Western Conference playoffs if Tim Duncan went down an ankle injury, and then Duncan actually did go down with an ankle injury? Incidentally, Barkley ranks right up there with Scully on the I'd-watch-just-to-hear-him scale.
  • Remember yesterday, when I shuffled my iPod, listed the first 40 songs that popped up, and invited you all to "send any and all snide remarks and pithy comments"? Well, needless to say you did. Here are just a few ...

    From Patrick:

    I think Dennis Leary said it best:

    Does that mean I can sue Dan Folgerburg for making me into a p**** in the mid-70's. Is that possible, huh? Huh?! "Your honor, between him and James Taylor I didn't get a b*** job 'till I was 27 years old. I was in Colorado wearing hiking boots eating granola. I want some f***ing money right now!"

    Lose the James Taylor now.

    I figured John Mayer's name being on the list would get the most negative reaction, but apparently James Taylor is still the man for the job.

    From Arthur:

    The thing that jumped out at me was the shocking lack of ANY female artists. None. Zero.

    I mean, did I miss one? I'm not talking Madonna or Celine here. Women can rock. Seriously. No Janis Joplin, no Joni Mitchell, no Grace Slick-led Jefferson Airplane, no Concrete Blonde, no Breeders, no Pretenders, no X (with Excene), no early Bonnie Raitt, no Marianne Faithful (some of the harshest lyrics ever), not even Heart or Fleetwood Mac?

    I worry about your ability to relate with the ladies. No, I don't mean trying to pick up some shiny co-ed with a well placed Alanis Morrisette or Avril Lavigne reference. I mean actually listening to what someone like Liz Phair or Tori Amos (well, in the first couple albums anyway) has to say about the whole ex/relationship thing.

    I'm no sensitive ponytail man, I just think your missing out on some amazing artists. Just 3 or 4 on the list and it wouldn't be so strange, but NONE?

    Also, no Warren Zevon? And where's the '80s stuff? No INXS? No U2? No R.E.M.? Hell, no Wang Chung?

    But on a positive note, "Walking in Memphis" was a nice surprise on the list. Great tune.

    That's a long e-mail, so let me take a moment to respond. First of all, I'm a big Warren Zevon fan and I have about 4-5 of his songs in my iPod. I think some e-mailers were under the impression that the 40 songs I listed where the only songs in my iPod, since I got a bunch of "hey, why don't you have X in your iPod" e-mails, but that's not the case. Those are just a random sampling.

    Second, I didn't realize until Arthur pointed it out that I didn't have a single female artist represented, and it does surprise me. With that said, I obviously like male singers better. I'm not sure what I can say. I like male comedians better too, is that wrong? And guess what? I'm not a big fan of women's sports either. (Oh no, I can almost hear the avalanche of e-mails heading my way ...)

    Also, on the long list of things that might hurt my "ability to relate with the ladies," the songs on my iPod are probably near the bottom. And really, I listen to music because it sounds good, not because I want to know what someone "has to say about the whole ex/relationship thing." Just because someone is singing that stuff doesn't make me any more interested in hearing it.

    But by far my favorite part of Arthur's e-mail is when he says: "But on a positive note, 'Walking in Memphis' was a nice surprise on the list. Great tune." Why is that my favorite? Because about 10 minutes after he wrote that I received this e-mail ...

    From Kirk:

    Walking in Memphis is quite possibly the worst song ever written. Other than that, you're forgiven.

    Together, those two e-mails represent the epitome of reader feedback.

  • In addition to asking for e-mails from you guys, I also suggested that other bloggers out there make a list of the first 40 songs that pop up on their iPods.

    I'm sure I'm missing a few, but here's at least a partial list of the blogs/bloggers who took me up on my challenge:

    - Christian Ruzich at The Cub Reporter ("Because Gleeman told me to.")

    - Brad Dowdy at No Pepper ("To say my list and Aaron's are different would be the understatement of the year.")

    - M.O. at Mariner Optimist ("As for his comment on Maroon 5, and having to admit that he liked one of their songs, I must say that I've enjoyed EVERY Maroon 5 song I've heard, which I think is all of them.")

    - Lumpy at Lumpy's Blog ("I don't really have much to say about that list, some of it is quite embarrassing.")

    - Steve Silver at SteveSilver.net

    - Will Young at Will's Minnesota Twins Page ("I swear to God I didn’t know I had #25 on my computer. I’m also slightly ashamed of #9. On the other hand, I like #19 so deal with it.")

    - The Knicker Blogger at KnickerBlogger.net ("So here is my wide variety of complete crap.")

    - A Mets Fan at Moist Happenings ("Feel free to make judge me based on 1.5% of my library.")

    - Jacob Lewin at The Launching Pad ("My initial reaction is that I don't seem to have that much variety considering that I have over 6200 songs in my library.")

    - Daniel Judge at Random Thoughts ("Please don't judge me by these 40 songs ... although, I'm sure most of yours would be worse.")

    - Jason Turner at Randomness of Me ("Some songs I am mildly embarrassed by.")

    - Bill at Vague Space ("I doubt anyone reading this will enjoy it, especially since no one I know likes my music. Oh well. Maybe Gleeman will link to this like he said he would.")

    - And last and certainly least, Dan Lewis at Walk-off Balk took my request for "snide remarks and pithy comments" to an extreme level. I'm not sure why I'm linking to and quoting someone who went out of their way to be a jerk to me, but what's the difference. I'm sure he has a good reason (and I did ask for it, sort of).

    Here goes:

    Aaron Gleeman, who used to write a good blog about baseball and now writes one about poker, his journalism classes, the size of his bladder, and hot babes he likes, went out on a limb and posted the first 40 songs his iPod pulled up when programmed to "shuffle".

    Actually, I find that to be an amusing opening paragraph. Jerky, but amusing nonetheless. It would be particularly amusing if it weren't, say, written about me. The rest of the post is quite long and not that interesting, so I'll just give you a couple "highlights":

    If Paul McCartney, why "Maybe I'm Amazed"? If Guns 'N Roses, why "Patience"? If Neil Young, why "Old Man"? This smacks of someone who doesn't bother to own the albums and instead opts to hunt down and pay 99 cents for already vastly overplayed material.

    [...]

    He's got the pedestrian guitar wanking of Jonny Lang, John Mayer, and Stevie Ray Vaughn, artists dismissed outright by every serious blues aficionado in existence.

    One of my least-favorite types of people in this world are the ones who think something is bad once it becomes popular. I'm sure you all know plenty of people like that -- apparently Dan is one. Imagine, someone actually liking well-known, oft-played songs. Oh, the horror!

    Why "Maybe I'm Amazed," "Patience," and "Old Man"? I dunno, how about because I enjoy listening to them? Apparently I should have based my musical taste on making myself feel special for picking obscure songs. And why should I care if an artist has been "dismissed outright by every serious blues aficionado in existence"? That's like a guy asking his buddies if they think his girlfriend is attractive, and then dumping her if they say no. As someone once told me, "You're the one who has to f*** her, so what the hell do you care what they think?"

    Dan also goes on to mention the "utter crap that defiles Aaron's list," calls "Space Cowboy" by the Steve Miller Band "one of the most horrific things ever committed to magnetic tape," and finishes up by saying "I was just trying to get some hits via Gleeman."

    Mission accomplished, jackass! For more examples of some guy named Dan Lewis being too cool for the room while mocking my musical tastes, head over to ... well, I'm not going to bother linking to it twice. You can scroll up and find it if you want to.

  • See ya Monday ...

    Today at The Hardball Times:
    - Top 50 Prospects of 2005: 1-10 (by Aaron Gleeman)
    - Five Questions: Texas Rangers (by Tom Meagher)
    - Five Questions: Detroit Tigers (by Brian Borawski)
    - Fantasy: Closer Rankings, Part Two (by Ben Jacobs)

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