Jimmy Neilson and Gunther from “Friends”

March 19, 2013

Jimmy Neilson is secretly Gunther from “Friends”

Mel Gibson Breakdown (Literally)

July 8, 2011

I was in a brief discussion about how a lot of Mel Gibson movies seem to have Christ-like figures, or Christian messages in them.  They also have lots of ‘splosians.  Here’s a diagram so you can keep them straight.

The Chilliest Wave of Them All

October 30, 2010

Yeah.  It’s the new buzz term.  Any band you may have heard for the last three or so months has probably been called “chillwave”.  Based on the description of said genre, a large amount of bands you may have liked for the last 5+ years may also may now be looped into the descriptor of “chillwave”.  Nothing is beyond it’s grasp.  Do you like Ariel Pink? Best Coast? Panda Bear? Boards of Canada? Beach House? m83? The Avalanches? Deerhunter? Broken Social SceneFennesz? Well my friend… you like chillwave.

“Wait,” you say, “all those bands existed years  BEFORE this newfangled term.”

Yes, but all of that is irrelevant now.  The wave is upon us.

I’m writing a few little posts about it, the first one is up now.

  1. The strange origination of Chillwave
  2. The bands of Chillwave
  3. The aesthetic of Chillwave

Hey, I’m Here Now

August 30, 2010


Also, I’ll post stuff here still, promise.

Style Points

March 9, 2010

It’s dated now, but I felt like posting it here.  Originally on Third Coast Digest…  (alternate headlines were going to be either “Rocky: On Ice”, or “Subject to Style”)

American League versus National League. Lakers versus Celtics. The Greatest Show on Turf versus the 4-3. As all sports fans will ponder at some point, “Am I a purist, or am I a spectator?” Do you live to watch practice pay off in victory, or crave the unpredictability that raw athleticism can bring to sport? While who wins and who loses is recorded forever in the box score, a sports fan lives to discuss the game well past when it’s recorded in an almanac.

In an argument that will eternally rage, I now add figure skaters Russian Evgeni Plushenko and American Evan Lysacek into this list of diametrical opposition. At first glance, they have all the great traits of classic rivals — Johnson/Bird, Bjorn/McEnroe, Balboa/Drago — but has there ever been a stranger pair of rivals than at last night’s Olympic skate-off?

This is what was so intriguing: Skating scores are weighted based not only on what is achieved, but on how it is achieved. What we saw last night is two athletes performing the same required feats, but receiving a different score — as a rule. In the weird world of professional skating, this is how it works. Plushenko, the mulleted graceless athlete versus Lysacek, a slick-coiffed ice-dramatist are on equal footing. It’s such a strange, unique situation.

Imagine footballer Chad Ochocinco’s post-TD antics yielding him a favorable .3 point edge to sneak in front of a mundane Dallas Clark hand-the-football-to-the-ref celebration. Or Curt Schilling’s edgy sock decoration eeking out a nail-biting World Series game.

The question remains: Is it a “sport” if a game is subjectively scored, or worse yet, scored only by the well-informed elite? One would argue “no” if a golfer’s exaggerated fist-pump would take a stroke off their total. Meanwhile, mogul skiiers, gymnasts, all X-sporters and perhaps even the BCS would have to emphatically disagree.

The arguments will continue to rage, but as Plushenko’s mullet whirls as he lands his patented quadruple axle, and Lysacek glides by be-feathered in a Vera Wang onesie, ask yourself: Does rewarding dramatics devalue sports, or is it just the honest admission that we watch sports for the entertainment, not just the final score?

Write an Album in a Month

February 5, 2010

“But Brian,” you ask, “do you know what you’re doing?”

NOPE!  RPM’s encouraging me to do so, and I’m encouraging my friends to do so, so I’m considering taking a shot at it as well.

I think Carl Newman once said an original voice comes from being inept at mimicking your favorite artists.  I’m inept!  I can do this!

Flashback: 1999

September 17, 2009

Well well well.

I will be turning 29 this week.  I received a very curious piece of mail earlier this year (February) from my old Youth Group co-coordinators.   I don’t remember doing this activity AT ALL, but here it is.  When we were all 18-ish and graduating High School soon, we were asked to predict where we’d be in 10 years for everyone else (and write a little message to our ten year’s older selves).  It showed up in the mail recently and I’d like to share the results with you  (I’ll block out the names, and score them on accuracy):

From M****:

Brian: Very important, famous job.  Moved to a really remote part of the country.  Very well off.  Not married.

M**** scores 1 point for accurately guessing I would not be married.

From B****:

Brian: You are married and loving life. You have 1 child whom you adore.  Your job keeps you busy but you are successful.  Good luck! Love, B****

B**** scores 1 point for saying that my job keeps me busy

From S****:

You’re a really successful guy… having a good time with life .. probably a reporter for a big newspaper.  You live in the city.  Good Luck! Love S****

S**** scores 2.5 points for saying I’m having a good time with life, I live in the city, and I “report” which I’ll translate as “blog” for half a point.

From JA****:

Hi Buddy.  It’s fun living with you. -J****

J**** scores .5 points in that I am still his buddy.

From BR****:

*Married to _ _ _ _ _  (my girlfriend at the time)


*Sleepin’ w/ girls left and right


BR**** scores 2 points.

From Anonymous #1: (girl’s writing)

Hey in 5 or 6 years I think you’ll be as cute as you are now!  Hope you’re happy

Anonymous #1  scores 2 points.  Five or six  years from 1999 was 2005, at which point I was cute — correct.  Also… drama!?!?!?!

From Anonymous #2: (guy’s writing)

I love you, Bri-guy.  You will be a successful suit with a big ole’ fam and a great job.

Anonymous #2 scores -3 points. (Also, to note, I don’t think “suit” was derogatory in 1999).

From JD****

Brian will be a successful businessman.  He will be involved with communications or advertising and thinking up slogans and sayings for advertisements.  You will be happy a when you return to Drexel (note: my old street) you’ll always be happy & remember your childhood. Best of luck!

JD gets 3 points because being in business and communications and advertising is prettymuch what I do.  I have realized though, that the odds of me “returning” to my home street are low …  I grew up in a pretty swell neighborhood and I don’t envision being able to afford now.

From A****

Brian will be a movie critic, take Siskel’s place on the show.  Watch our for _ _ _ _ .  ❤ A****

Ha! A*** gets 1 point because I should’ve watched out for _ _ _ _ _.

Anyway.  That was fun.  Oh, 1999.  I’m going to go break out Hello Nasty and reminisce.   Oh, and here’s my note to myself:

Hey Gorgeous!  Lookin’ Good.

Feb 28 1999

Height: 5’11”

Weight: 130   (note: ha!  what?! scary)

Goals: film studies? journalism?

Hopes: To keep my friends. Positive self-image (note:  also funny)

Favorite CD: Elliot Smith [sic]

Favorite Film: Swingers


Where’s Brian?

July 28, 2009

I’m a busy boy, but three things I wanted to tell y’all about:

  1. I’m writing for a tri-city music blog, BemBang repping Chicago.  We mainly make fun of stuff.
  2. My pet project — the Football-via-Teen Drama blog Gridiron Girl (co-written by Kenny, Matt and Rob) — will be getting a weekly column spot at Third Coast Digest as we start revving up for 09/10 football season.
  3. Oh, Rob also writes a hilarious Milwaukee Brewers column for 3CD called Dear Ken Macha.  I highly recommend you check it out.

Oh Yeah.   FYI.  Brett Favre is OUT as a Viking.   Hellllloooo Mike Vick?!?!?!  That would be hilarious.

Favre is a Viking

June 24, 2009

Image Courtesy of Gridiron Girl

According to WISN in Milwaukee, B-Fav has agreed to terms with the Vikings. Best part:

An ESPN reporter asked Packers General Manager Ted Thompson if he was taking it personally that Favre plans to play for Minnesota.

Thomspon’s reply was, “No, no, no, no.”

Translation: Yes.

And for the fun of it, here’s some stats from last year:

  • Brett Favre Rating: 81.0, Int: 22, Sacks: 30, Pct 65.7
  • Gus Ferotte Rating: 73.7, Int: 15, Sacks: 29, Pct 59.1
  • Tavaris Jackson Rating: 95.4, Int: 2, Sacks: 14, Pct 59.1

Best Albums of the last 12 months or so… Bon Iver

May 13, 2009

Still May.  Since the year is nearly half over, I’ll just post 12 or so albums I liked over the last 12 or some months…

Bon Iver – For Emma, Forever Ago

(#4 of 12 in no particular order)

Not much more you can say about Justin Vernon… just ask Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold.

Hell, Great albums tend to have great backstories, and I was admittedly skeptical of how great this album could be based on the fact that those recommending it would talk more about HOW/WHY it was made rather than what it sounded like.  I can now accept that sometimes an album so patient, subtle, unassuming and redemptive will need that extra tangential push to make it up into the popular conscience and get the audience that it really deserves.