December 20, 2013

My favorite songs of 2013

For some reason I went through Pitchfork's top 100 songs of 2013 and predictably found myself either disliking or never even hearing all but around a dozen songs, so I decided to put together my own top 30 37. It turns out that most of the songs I thought came out in 2013 actually came out in 2012 or maybe 2005, so this is hardly a definitive ranking. But whatever. Here are a bunch of songs I liked this year:


1. "Backseat Freestyle" by Kendrick Lamar


2. "Bad" by Wale and Rihanna


3. "Dear Marie" by John Mayer


4. "Power Trip" by J. Cole and Miguel


5. "Wake Me Up" by Avicii and Aloe Blacc


6. "Elephant" by Jason Isbell


7. "Bed Peace" by Jhene Aiko and Childish Gambino


8. "Hit Me" by Mystikal


9. "The Monster" by Eminem and Rihanna


10. "Wild Child" by Brett Dennen


11. "Hold On, We're Going Home" by Drake and Majid Jordan


12. "Crooked Smile" by J. Cole and TLC


13. "Gun" by Chvrches


14. "Bitch Don't Kill My Vibe" by Kendrick Lamar


15. "Cover Me Up" by Jason Isbell


16. "Who You Love" by John Mayer and Katy Perry


17. "Poetic Justice" by Kendrick Lamar and Drake


18. "Love Is The Answer" by Aloe Blacc and Pharrell Williams


19. "Don't Wait" by Mapei


20. "She Knows" by J. Cole


21. "When We Were Young" by Brett Dennen


22. "Wildfire" by John Mayer


23. "Rich As Fuck" by Lil Wayne and 2 Chainz


24. "Royals" by Lorde


25. "Different Days" by Jason Isbell


26. "Do I Wanna Know" by Arctic Monkeys


27. "Tired Of Dreaming" by Wale, Ne-Yo, and Rick Ross


28. "Sweet Persuasion" by Brett Dennen


29. "Get Lucky" by Daft Punk and Pharrell Williams


30. "Beautiful Day" by Joshua Radin


31. "Love Me" by Lil Wayne, Drake, and Future


32. "The Man" by Aloe Blacc


33. "My My Love" by Joshua Radin


34. "Body Party" by Ciara


35. "Why'd You Only Call Me When You're High?" by Arctic Monkeys


36. "Fuckin' Problem" by A$AP Rocky, Kendrick Lamar, 2 Chainz, and Drake


37. "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" by Possum Plows


This week's blog content is sponsored by 6300 Steakhouse at the Embassy Suites, an American steakhouse with a Cajun flair that features hand-cut steaks, seafood, sandwiches, burgers, and homemade Jambalaya. Please support them for supporting AG.com.

December 13, 2013

Link-O-Rama

• I'm co-hosting an event during TwinsFest next month with John Bonnes, Parker Hageman, Nick Nelson, Seth Stohs, and the whole Twins Daily crew. Saturday night, January 25, we'll be getting together for beer and baseball at Mason's Restaurant downtown, which is one block from Target Field where TwinsFest is taking place this year for the first time. We're calling it "Winter Meltdown" and we'll be joined by special guests, including Twins president Dave St. Peter.

winter meltdown logo

Space is limited and we expect the event to sell out, so reserve your spot as soon as possible.

UPDATE: Wow. We sold out all 125 tickets to the event in three hours this morning.

Jason Kubel is coming back to the Twins.

• We live in a world where the best-looking baseball manager is a Jew who went to Dartmouth.

• On a related note, Ron Gardenhire took the news of his 28th-place handsomeness finish well.

• Being chosen for the Best of Minneapolis Beards is arguably the greatest honor of my life, even if I had to guilt world-renowned beard curator Megan Weisenberger into including me.

• On a related note, Robinson Cano broke up with the Yankees and the very first thing he did was grow a beard.

Scott Boras threw some shade at Jay Z and even dragged Rihanna into it.

Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times wrote an absolutely fascinating investigative piece shining a light on the Mariners' dysfunctional front office, with tons of damning quotes.

• I've never been prouder of something in my entire life. Journalism school was worth the money.

Ben Revere was the cutest kid of all time.

• On this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode our waitress says she loves me and I waste no time reciprocating, showing once and for all that I have zero commitment issues. We also talked about lots of baseball stuff, if you're into that for some weird reason.

• "Gleeman and The Geek" is available on Stitcher now, giving you another way to consume us.

Amy Poehler is the best, so I really liked Alex Scordelis' feature (and accompanying photo shoot) on her in Paper magazine. My favorite part:

Poehler laughs loudly at the thought of her tipsy Bostonian parents celebrating a Red Sox win. I ask if she thinks she's a generous laugher. "I don't break in scenes, but I do laugh too much," she says. "I was just directing Broad City, and the sound guy asked me, 'Can you laugh less during the takes?' And I was like, 'I can't promise you anything.' I like to laugh a lot. I have a crazy maniacal laugh that I try to maintain through diet and exercise."

And thankfully, the internet being the internet, there's a video compilation of Poehler's laugh:

For me, that's second only to the sound of rain falling in terms of soothing noises.

• NL MVP Andrew McCutchen proposed to his girlfriend on "Ellen."

• Sad news about snuggle-for-pay not making it in Wisconsin, because I was looking into buying a franchise in Minnesota. And it seems like my favorite baseball player of all time would have been interested in opening a Chicago-area franchise.

• OK, who wants to get me this for Christmas?

Ann Friedman of Esquire wrote an interesting article about how men and women view dating someone taller or shorter than them and why everyone should be more open-minded.

• There was a discussion on Twitter about the blogs people had as teenagers and eventually quit, which I didn't realize was an option. It got me digging through my archives and I stumbled across this post from March of 2003--when I was a 20-year-old college student--and it's amazing how little has changed since then.

"Why I'll Never Ask A Guy Out" by Malina Bickford made me sad, because think of how many potential love connections never happen due to men being clueless. We need help sometimes.

• 18.6 million people watched "The Sound Of Music Live" on NBC, including one man with Pizza Luce and a crappy attitude.

• One of the original baseball bloggers, Jon Weisman of Dodger Thoughts, has a new job working for the Dodgers.

The latest from my future wife.

Ron Coomer is leaving FOX Sports North and K-TWIN to be the Cubs' new radio analyst.

• You know you've established a reputation when six different people send the same link.

• I enjoyed Chelsea Fagan's list of "24 rules for being a gentleman in 2014" even though No. 2 basically ruled me out and I failed about 10 of them.

• My crush on Lizzy Caplan knows no bounds:

She's such a f-ing delight.

• We're recording a new "Gleeman and The Geek" episode Saturday afternoon at HammerHeart Brewing Company in Lino Lakes. We'll get started around 2:00 p.m. and much more importantly we'll be done podcasting and ready to have some beers around 3:30 p.m. Come hang out.

• I've never been to see "Wits" at the Fitzgerald Theater before, but their Valentine's Day show guests are basically hand-picked for me: Marc Maron, Jason Isbell, and Amanda Shires.

• Speaking of which: Step 1 to becoming a guest?

• I'm using this as my excuse for everything now.

• In preparation for this week's chosen song, here's a complete list of things Tom Waits misses about the woman in "Hold On":

- Charcoal eyes
- Monroe hips
- Hair like wind
- Crooked little heart
- Broken-China voice

I've been on a real Waits kick lately, which believe it or not means I've been in a good mood.

• AG.com favorite and Twitter must-follow Alison Agosti has a new gig writing for "Late Night With Seth Meyers."

• I really enjoyed "Drinking Buddies" starring Olivia Wilde, Anna Kendrick, Jake Johnson, and Ron Livingston. B-plus movie with A-plus work from Wilde in the role of Holly Manthei.

• Nothing to do with anything, but I randomly think of this scene every few months.

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

- "Jon Taffer hair transplant"
- "Twins baseball rumors"
- "Husband got fat and lazy drinking beer"
- "Did Meatsauce Paul Lambert go to college?"
- "Marney Gellner favorite country songs"
- "Ron Coomer net worth"
- "Tevin Campbell big boner"
- "Tom Colicchio wearing glasses"

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is the aforementioned "Hold On" by Waits:


This week's blog content is sponsored by 6300 Steakhouse at the Embassy Suites, an American steakhouse with a Cajun flair that features hand-cut steaks, seafood, sandwiches, burgers, and homemade Jambalaya. Please support them for supporting AG.com.

November 15, 2013

Link-O-Rama

Headline of the week: "Woman having sex at Waffle House uses burger for sandal."

• I lost a lot more weight in a lot less time, so where's my $10,000?

• Everyone's favorite retired Twins blogger, Batgirl, was featured in the New York Times for the writing she does under her "Anne Ursu" alter ego.

• Monday night I saw Dave Chappelle at First Avenue and it was amazing. He took the stage at around 11:00 p.m. and begrudgingly left at 2:10 a.m. after three hours of stand-up and chatting with the audience. Chappelle is such a gifted, relaxed performer that it was often hard to figure out what was a planned routine and what was improvised riffing, but he had the sold-out crowd wrapped around his finger all night.

Chappelle famously removed himself from the spotlight for a long time and in going back on tour he recently made headlines for a messy show in Connecticut, but his genius was on full display Monday and he seemed to feel such a genuine bond with the adoring Minneapolis crowd that he couldn't bring himself to leave the stage. As an insomniac comedy junkie, watching him light up cigarette after cigarette and shoot the shit until 2:00 a.m. was an experience I'll never forget.

It's tough to fully describe the late-night craziness Monday night, but Chris Riemenschneider of the Minneapolis Star Tribune gave it a good try.

UPDATE: Chappelle got his own star on the side of First Avenue.

Kevin Love apparently took in one of the Chappelle shows too.

• I had my first TCF Bank Stadium tailgating experience before (and during/after) last weekend's Gophers-Penn State game and took a bunch of pictures.

• Did the Twins and Joe Mauer make the right decision moving him from catcher to first base?

This week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode features an update on my $4,700 exploding tire, tales of tailgating, dumb pranks, and our growing feud with "The Sportive" podcast. Oh, and it was literally recorded in a basement.

Five words: Puppies. Learning. How. To. Walk.

On a related note: Boston Terriers in shower caps.

• Here's how KFAN's website described my Thursday morning return to the airwaves with Paul Allen: "Aaron Gleeman joins PA in-studio to catch up on baseball, Mauer's move to first base, his love life, and his mom." Not quite accurate, though: We talked about Twitter too.

Scott Melker mashed up Hall and Oates with a bunch of different rappers, including a combo of "Maneater" and "C.R.E.A.M." by Wu-Tang Clan that's brilliant.

Carson Cistulli of Fan Graphs explains why Big Pun was the real MVP this season.

Amanda Brooke Perrin's awkward guide to first dates is fantastic.

• I'm printing this out and taking it on all future dates.

• See, now this is my type of (almost) love story.

Ricky Rubio got an assist through Jarrett Jack's legs.

• There is where I'm getting noted jumpsuit enthusiast Michael Rand's birthday present. And possibly my entire wardrobe from now on.

• My breakdown of some free agent starting pitchers the Twins might actually sign.

Brian Wilson can't sign with the Yankees because he won't shave his beard.

Ten years ago this week the Twins traded A.J. Pierzynski to the Giants for a decent haul.

• Hey look, it's David Ortiz's first career walk-off home run and he's wearing a Twins uniform:

That video has so much amazing in it. There's even a Bobby Kielty sighting.

• Sure, there could in theory be multiple people named D.J. Short, but I choose to believe that my Rotoworld and HardballTalk colleague has been living a secret life this entire time.

• For anyone interested in supporting the free content at AG.com, I've cut the sponsor of the week price in half from now until the end of the year.

• The latest from my future wife, sans video but still pretty damn good.

Nick Punto is the new Moneyball.

• I'm into not-safe-for-work burrito talk, so Liz Welle and Maggie LaMaack are my favorite same-sex Twitter couple.

• To honor Tom Scharpling announcing that he's ending "The Best Show on WFMU" next month after 13 years the Fenway Park organist played the theme song during a World Series game.

Saoirse Ronan has the greatest accent of all time.

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

- "Aaron Gleeman bullshit theories"
- "Gleeman vs. vegetables"
- "Boy who lost 23 pounds with water"
- "Blowing a .789"
- "Chubby kid making pizza"
- "How the hell do I get the elliptical to fold?"
- "Breaking cartilage in the ear"
- "Yangtze restaurant best dish"

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is "Bad" by Wale and Rihanna:


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March 30, 2012

Link-O-Rama

• I'll be on 1500-ESPN radio tonight from 7-8 talking Twins and other stuff with Darren Wolfson, so tune in or listen online.

Carl Pavano was targeted in an extortion attempt by a high school classmate who claims to have had a relationship with the Twins pitcher and it gets even crazier from there.

• Who are the Twins' top five prospects? I'm glad you asked.

This conversation, in my mind: "Oh my god, you're so good looking!"

• I decided to buy The Hunger Games book before seeing the movie and it was so good that I read all 374 pages in one sitting. Being labeled a "young adult novel" obscures the fact that it's darker and has more violence than 99 percent of "adult novels."

• On a related note: People, still the worst.

Sarah Hyland seems like fun.

• For anyone interested in advertising on AG.com and supporting the site's free content, click here for the details of my new "sponsor of the week" program.

Stephon Marbury is a huge Sinead O'Connor fan, obviously.

• This week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode unwittingly started an odd Twitter feud between two groups of people, so you'll probably want to hear it.

• Never forget, Geraldo Rivera boxed Frank Stallone on Howard Stern's show in 1992:

Rivera got pummeled, which might explain a lot these days.

Michael K. Williams as Ol' Dirty Bastard? Oh, indeed.

• Minnesota native, former Gophers star, and JCC basketball legend Jack Hannahan is the Indians' new starting third baseman.

Joba Chamberlain's gruesome injury made me think back to fifth grade when a classmate got a trampoline and I went to her house about 15 times in a month ... and then never again. Fifth grade was weird, but at least my ankle stayed inside my skin.

Marion Barber was a rookie at 22, a Pro Bowler at 24, and is finished at 28. Being an NFL running back is scary, but I'll never forget that amazing Barber-Laurence Maroney backfield.

• There's actually one profession that ages someone more rapidly than NFL running back.

• I can't believe I never thought of this for my prom.

Joe Morgan liked Adidas before he disliked Moneyball.

• Not only did I lose 150 pounds in one year my cousin-in-law (which might not actually be a thing, but you know what I mean) has lost 110 pounds.

Carnie Wilson, on the other hand, tried to cheat the system and failed. So she did it again.

• Hall of Fame soul singer Bobby Womack has been diagnosed with colon cancer.

• Which one word best describes how Tim Tebow feels about being traded to the Jets?

Tebow and The Pointer Sisters have something in common.

• I was sad to see him go, but congrats to my longtime Rotoworld teammate Gregg Rosenthal for his new gig at NFL.com. Great writer, great guy, and hugely responsible for my career.

• As part of replacing Rosenthal one of my favorite writers from way back, Michael David Smith, is the new managing editor at ProFootballTalk.

Royce White declared for the NBA draft, so the Gophers only missed one really good season.

• I finally saw The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Another great David Fincher movie and, unlike most foreign remakes, an equal or perhaps even better version than the original. It also gave The Social Network opening breakup scene new meaning.

Josie Long was an exceptionally charming guest on "Stop Podcasting Yourself."

• One of my favorite podcasters, Marc Maron, will soon have his own television show.

• I've always had a phobia of talking on the phone, which is rough because it's needed to set up therapy for the phobia and also because it's really dumb. But after hearing from people on Twitter and reading this I'm surprised to learn it's relatively common. Brains are weird.

• If you watched the season premiere of Mad Men you should read this and then read this.

• Happy birthday to my grandpa, Mel Gallop, who recently turned 89 years old and celebrated by complaining about Drew Butera over lunch with me.

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is Womack's classic "Across 110th Street":

January 27, 2012

Link-O-Rama

Rihanna seems like fun.

• In retrospect, Kevin Garnett had the right idea in this picture.

• If she wasn't already an Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com candidate this quote would put Lizzy Caplan in the mix: "What I like to do every single night is fall asleep watching Larry Sanders."

Joe Mauer is engaged now, so perhaps there's a similar explanation for last year's injuries.

• One of my favorite comedians, Todd Glass, came out of the closet on Marc Maron's podcast and it was incredibly compelling stuff.

• Speaking of Maron, this article about podcasting quotes me right alongside him, which was a big thrill. And coincidentally the writer, Gaby Dunn, conducted the interview with Jewish porn star James Deen that appeared in Link-O-Rama last month. As always, life is weird.

• We had a first on this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode, as a random drunk woman interrupted the podcast to show us her bra for no apparent reason.

• Imagine a world in which Prince Fielder, Miguel Cabrera, and Delmon Young are all on the same American League team and someone else is the designated hitter.

Jimmer Fredette's transition to the NBA is proving to be a difficult one and Sebastian Pruiti of Grantland has a very detailed, interesting analysis of his early struggles.

• Speaking of NBA rookies, I bought one of these.

Katy Perry unfollowed Russell Brand on Twitter after their divorce, which is no doubt where this is headed too some day.

• I was talking about wrestling on Twitter, so my mom dug up this picture of me with Sergeant Slaughter in 1985:

I apparently inherited his jaw line from that one brief meeting.

• Fat-O-Meter update: This is day 330 of my diet and I'm down 140 pounds.

• This is absurd, of course, but he almost deserves it for not getting a prenup.

• I wonder what Justin Morneau and Corey Koskie think about this.

• Two great tastes that go great together: Kate Beckinsale and Maria Menounos.

• Stuff like this fascinates me: Back in 1995 the Mariners turned down a deal with the Yankees for a 23-year-old catching prospect named Jorge Posada.

Moneyball was nominated for six Oscars, including "best actor" for Brad Pitt, "best supporting actor" for Jonah Hill, and "best picture." I liked these outtakes better than the actual movie.

• Not only is new Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow sabermetrically inclined, he announced via Twitter that Baseball Prospectus analyst Mike Fast is joining the front office.

Bill James used to write the occasional guest piece for The Hardball Times when I was there and it was a big honor, so Grantland talking him into being a regular is quite a get.

• As a Sarah Hyland fan, I might have actually tuned into the Golden Globes for this.

• I have some mixed feelings about this, but it's an interesting story and an important lesson when it comes to baseball rumors and reporting.

Zooey Deschanel, describing her college experience that sounds an awful lot like mine: "My specialness is not appreciated in this place." With the main difference being that mine still isn't.

• I've always said there's a little Gilbert Gottfried inside all of us:

 If you don't think that's funny we probably can't be friends.

• Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com candidate Aubrey Plaza on meeting Ryan Gosling: "I think he has a girlfriend, but maybe I'll murder her someday and we'll be together forever."

Flip Saunders got fired by the Wizards, who hilariously replaced him with Randy Wittman.

JaVale McGee's mom seems a lot like my mom.

Harris Wittels, who once left a comment here, was cast in Sarah Silverman's new show.

• I watched all 10 episodes of Bar Rescue despite not really enjoying it and thinking the star is like Gordon Ramsay without the charm, charisma, and hair. Is that a recommendation?

• Showtime is following the Marlins for Season 2 of The Franchise, which leaves the door open for Ozzie Guillen to appear on Shameless. I'll bet he has great chemistry with Emmy Rossum.

• For anyone with HBO: Make sure to watch the documentary series about Freddie Roach.

• Speaking of great sports documentaries, the final episode of the series following MMA fighter Allistair Overeem is spectacular and features his recent win over Brock Lesnar. Great stuff.

• As always I'm proud to be a very, very small part of MinnPost, which saw its readership grow 21 percent in 2011.

• If you haven't already, go buy Seth Stohs' annual Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook for 190 pages of hardcore prospect profiles, analysis, interviews, and rankings.

Nick Nelson's old blog-mate, Nick Mosvick, has a new blog all his own.

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is "Work" by Gang Starr:

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