November 9, 2012

Link-O-Rama

• Changes at the Minneapolis Star Tribune, as Joe Christensen and Phil Miller are swapping roles in 2013, with Christensen covering Gophers football and Miller covering the Twins. I'm sad to see Christensen leave the Twins beat he did so well while increasingly blending stats into his work and being nice/understanding to bloggers. With that said, Miller is an excellent writer, an even better guy, and was stellar on the Twins beat in his St. Paul Pioneer Press days.

• "Saturday Night Live" really ought to just have Louis C.K. host every week.

• I'm thinking about getting a similar tattoo that reads "You've Made A Terrible Mistake."

• I saw Artie Lange, Dave Attell, Jim Norton, and Amy Schumer perform a great stand-up comedy show Saturday night at Mystic Lake Casino. One of the running jokes of the night was how no one--comedians or audience members--could drink, but apparently that's all changing.

• Now the real insanity test will be if I keep watching "Survivor" after Jeff Kent's crazy exit.

• If we pretend for a moment that the Twins might actually sign a top-of-the-rotation starter, who are their options?

• This week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode was recorded Sunday at Stella's Fish Cafe and featured me getting so annoyed with John Bonnes that I threatened to punch him in the face. After the podcast mercifully ended we headed upstairs to hang out with a few dozen people who got together in the name of charity to watch the Vikings game, at which point Bonnes thought it would be a great idea to shoot this four-minute (four-minute!) video of me:

My co-stars are Dana Wessel of 1500-ESPN, Chris Long of KSTP, and Heather Balgaard of being completely ashamed to appear in the above video.

• And speaking of Bonnes' anti-semitism discussed in the video, congrats to Delmon Young!

Charles Barkley leaving "Inside The NBA" would make me incredibly sad, but in the meantime at least this was funny.

• Sideline reporter Robby Incmikoski is leaving FOX Sports North to take a job in Pittsburgh, where hopefully the bloggers aren't such big jerks and he can live in peace.

• Say what you will about Tim Tebow, but the man has good taste.

• Remember all those "best shape of his life" stories from spring training? How did those players actually fare this season?

• Once upon a time Brien Taylor was a No. 1 overall pick and baseball's best pitching prospect. Now he's going to prison for selling crack.

Melky Cabrera is a finalist for the "Heart and Hustle" award despite his suspension.

• This is definitely my favorite form of child abuse.

• I have no doubt this show would be terrible and no doubt I would watch it.

• One of the most amusing knockouts you'll ever see.

• Baseball Think Factory is where all the good international scouting directors got their start.

• If you liked the Pepsi commercial in which Kyrie Irving was made up to look like an old man and played basketball you'll really love the new version with Irving and Kevin Love:

Love does a pretty convincing job stumbling around the court initially, although the whole being 6-foot-10 thing is tough to hide.

Andrei Kirilenko and Nikola Pekovic made Alexey Shved cut his hair.

Gregg Popovich's contempt for in-game television interviews is already in midseason form.

• Any fellow Maximum Fun podcast fans want to go with me to this convention next year? I'm mostly serious, I think.

• Speaking of which, for anyone into podcasts I wrote a lengthy article reviewing my favorites.

• In at least one key area Bryant McKinnie hasn't lost a step since leaving the Vikings.

• Old friend Mike Redmond has replaced Ozzie Guillen as Marlins manager and weather-wise Miami is a pretty good locale for naked batting practice.

• Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis is good story and his wife is a great story.

• Popeyes is trying to move into KFC's turf in Minnesota.

Carson Cistulli's chat with Matt Klaassen was very enjoyable if you're interested in two baseball writers talking about anything but baseball.

• AG.com reader Mike Fuchs compared Target Field to six other ballparks he visited recently.

• Some of this week's weird and random search engine queries that brought people here:

- "Dana Wessel hair"
- "Gleeman and Christopher Walken"
- "Jose Mijares girlfriend"
- "Jacqueline Bisset podcast"
- "Snoop Dogg bobblehead"
- "Statistical analysis for hire"
- "Nude party notes"
- "Marijuana and Chinese food"
- "How many donuts would equal 40 pounds"

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is "Don't Sweat The Technique" by Eric B. and Rakim:

October 19, 2012

Link-O-Rama

• I had a pretty good worlds colliding moment this week, as my Chelsea Peretti crush and my baseball writing job crossed paths. And her reaction was about right.

Anthony Bourdain found out that Marlo Stanfield is still tracking Omar Little, and the whole thing should delight fellow "The Wire" fans.

• Just in case you forgot that Bill Murray is the best.

• MLB.com reporter Bill Ladson did the baseball equivalent of "Dewey Defeats Truman."

Alex Rodriguez has the Twins to thank for his playoff reputation not being even worse.

Jim Harbaugh shifted $75 million in bets by turning down a penalty last night.

• I'm not sure why, exactly, but John Bonnes thought it would be a good idea to record a video after we were done recording the latest "Gleeman and The Geek" episode. So here's me drinking beer and talking nonsense while he shines an incredibly bright light in my face in the middle of an otherwise dark bar:

Special guest appearance by our waitress! (And blame Bonnes for shooting in portrait view.)

• The above video was recorded Saturday night at The Lyndale Tap House, but afterward we felt further alcohol was needed and went to a new bar/restaurant called Nightingale that fellow Twins blogger Nick Nelson's brother and sister-in-law just opened last week. I recommend checking it out, because the place looks great, the employees and patrons were nice, and they have a good beer selection in addition to a big food menu.

• Thanks to everyone who submitted Twitter questions for my mailbag post earlier this week. I'll try to make it a semi-regular thing during the offseason.

• Within that mailbag post I recommended five podcasts, one of which was "Fan Graphs Audio" with Carson Cistulli and Dayn Perry. Their chat this week was a a fine representation of the show's overall brilliance.

• Like I've always said, working out is for chumps.

Ozzie Smith, who earned $32 million during his 19-year career, is selling all his stuff.

• Nobody puts Jeff Kent in a corner.

• Former Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com Elisha Cuthbert makes a pretty good Annie Hall.

• I'd order less Chinese takeout if dining in restaurants mirrored this story more often.

• I'm pretty sure this is what people from other countries imagine goes on in America always.

• My mixed feelings about Germans in general contributed to my enjoyment of this video:

I have no idea what he was saying, but the way he said it made everything much funnier.

• Good, because I really didn't want to think of Dane Cook as a co-worker.

• I've avoided anything even remotely related to politics for a decade here, but my "Friday Night Lights" fandom is too strong to ignore this story.

• Good to see that Zach Lowe didn't miss a beat moving from SI.com to Grantland. If you like basketball and smart analysis, he's a must-read.

• Whoever cast Alison Brie and Lizzy Caplan as sisters is a genius.

• Not surprisingly the smart folks at Baseball America are on Team Trout.

This is an example of why almost all of my ESPN-watching involves live sporting events.

• Some more recommendations from my ongoing Netflix instant binge: "Klown," "A Matter of Taste: Serving Up Paul Liebrandt," "Indie Game: The Movie," "Backstage," "Jim Norton: Please Be Offended," "Bill Burr: You People Are All The Same."

• Some of this week's weird and random search engine queries that brought people here:

- "I've had nine beers and I'm 150 pounds"
- "Joe Mande and Glen Rice"
- "Does Shana Hiatt have a baby?"
- "How many carbs in hunan chicken?"
- "Chris Ison Pulitzer"
- "Ashley Greene baseball"
- "How fat is Chuck Knoblauch?"
- "Delmon Young doppelganger"
- "Rachel Bilson favorite baseball team"
- "Jacqueline Bisset salaries"
- "Finding Minnesota pornographers"
- "Notes to put on a nerd's back"

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is Brandi Carlile doing a live version of "That Wasn't Me" for 89.3 The Current:

This week's blog content is sponsored by Audible, which is offering a free audiobook download for AG.com readers and "Gleeman and The Geek" listeners at AudiblePodcast.com/Gleeman.

September 21, 2012

Link-O-Rama

• If they ever discover something like this in Chinese food I'm going to be a billionaire.

Headline of the week/weak: "Man killed by truck after allegedly running from Waffle House without paying."

• On second thought, maybe this is actually the headline of the week/weak: "Woman finds out late husband was also her father."

• I'm pretty sure they're just taunting me now.

• Forget the fact that this happened in a Yankee Stadium bathroom, the bigger story is that it happened despite the guy wearing a CC Sabathia shirsey.

• I hadn't watched Survivor since the first season back in 2000, but Jeff Kent being on the show got me tune in for the new season premiere and I recapped the former MVP's debut.

• As part of this season's hazing Twins rookies dressed up like they were in a chain gang:

All things (and potential outfits) considered, the rookies got off pretty easy this year.

• Some things are too far-fetched even for science fiction.

Vince Young really knew how to party.

• If you're wondering how the Twins can fix their starting rotation this offseason, we broke down all the free agent pitching options for 45 minutes on this week's Gleeman and The Geek.

• And if you're wondering what a Gleeman and The Geek recording looks like, here's a picture of us in "action."

• One of the original baseball bloggers, Jon Weisman of Dodger Thoughts, called it quits after 10 years of great work. He was willing to keep going, but couldn't justify taking so much time away from his family and day job without getting paid to write about the Dodgers. Hmm.

• I love Google and I love DMX, so DMX's reaction to learning about Google was great:

Reminds me of my grandparents' reaction when we bought them a computer a few years ago.

• Not only did the great Tom Scharpling direct Aimee Mann's new video, he got Jon Hamm to play him in the video.

Ted Williams writes pretty well for a 95-year-old who's been dead since 2002.

• I sometimes write posts on HardballTalk just for the accompanying picture choice.

• Kansas City police went undercover to stop underage binge drinking at Royals games and then made some jokes at the Royals' expense.

• Who is Chris Herrmann? I'm glad you asked.

• One of my favorite basketball writers, Sebastian Pruiti, has left Grantland to take a job as the Oklahoma City Thunder's video analyst. I'll miss his Twitter ramblings most.

• I'm starting to like the White Sox more and more.

• This week in Chelsea Peretti being awesome involves Bobby Lee and lots of weirdness:

I suppose at this point I should just make her an Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com candidate.

• Good on former MLB Network host and current CSN New England reporter Trenni Kusnierek for publicly sharing her struggles with depression.

• My modest contribution to sabermetrics is still (sort of) breathing despite me.

Spoiler alert!

• Back by popular demand, this week's most amusing, weird, and random search engine queries that brought people here:

- "How to make chicken wings like Pizza Hut"
- "320 pounds and want to conceive a baby"
- "Bryce Harper fan fiction"
- "Ron Mahay wife"
- "Yuengling in Minneapolis"
- "Picture of old man asleep in a meeting"
- "Kevin Slowey engaged"
- "Boof Bonser tramp stamp"
- "Ricky Rubio my husband"

• I'm hoping everyone checked out the AG.com sponsor of the week, Emily Meier, a fiction author with a very compelling story. Here's part of a Minneapolis Star Tribune profile of her:

For years, there had been nibbles from publishers in New York, but no bites. Now, with breast cancer metastasizing through her bones, she decided she didn't have time to wait; she would publish them herself. But because she was Emily Meier--driven, focused, hardworking--she didn't do this halfway. Instead, she started her own publishing company.

Sky Spinner Press of St. Paul, incorporated as a for-profit business and co-owned by Meier's son and daughter, has published all six of her books in record time. ... The books are done, but Meier continues to write daily---her website (www.emilymeier.com) is an orderly maze of drop-down menus and essays and suggestions for book clubs and links to reviews and interviews. There's even a page of quotes from rejection letters she received over the years.

As someone whose entire writing career has been shaped and fueled by rejection I view Meier as a kindred spirit and it would make me incredibly happy if everyone who visited AG.com this week would take some time to visit her website as well. Poke around Meier's site, look at the rejection letters, get familiar with her collection of writing, and help fulfill someone's dream.

• Finally, in honor of the Twins' rookie hazing outfits this week's AG.com-approved music video is "Chain Gang" by Sam Cooke from 1960: