Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Pun City: The Mash-Up!

This blog doesn't have a specific topic tonight, so Pun City is just going to be a bunch of odds and ends.

First off, reiterating this from the Update on the last post.


Secondly, a bonus link that this blog thought was pretty good, primarily if you like Mike Tyson's Punchout or any of quite a few old school Nintendo games:


Pun City has just completed the 27th of 28 regular seasons within Tecmo Super Bowl. All teams except for the Cowboys (and the Cardinals' playoffs) have been played. Here are some updated stats:

-Easily the best team is the 49ers. Current regular season record stands at 339-93-0.

-Best team in the AFC is the Bills. Regular season record is 308-124-0.

-Pun City playing with any team is a better option though, Current regular season record stands at 404-28-0.

-Worst team in the game: New England Patriots, 111-319-2.

-Worst team in the NFC: Atlanta Falcons 136-295-1.

One could make a case that the "worst" labels are misnomers or skewed at best. Each of those two teams are in the same division as their conference's best teams. Having to play in those divisions where you face a tough schedule every year helps contribute to the bad record. (Or...the 49ers and Bills have inflated records because they have cream puffs like the Patriots and Falcons on their schedules twice a year?...Hmmm).

-A somewhat interesting phenomenon with the ties in this game. A significant amount of correlation exists between how bad a team is with how many ties they have. There have been 18 ties in the 27 seasons. Only 3 of those ties included a team that has the best (or 2nd-best) overall record within its division. Twelve of the ties included a team that has either the worst or 2nd-worst record in the division. The other 3 included teams with the 3rd-worst record in the division, and neither of these involved teams was in a 4-team division (meaning that 3rd-worst was also not 2nd-best).

-Tony Eason and Tom Tupa are the only backup QBs that have not played yet. All other backup QBs were either pressed into service due to a starter's injury or were just used because this blog knew they'd work better than the starter. (Or Pun City just got sick of the starter blowing throws/games and figured any change is good).

-The game will not injure any Tight Ends unless a human is using them. Even then, it's really tough. Eric Green and Keith Jackson were the only TEs to get hurt, and those are 2 of the better TEs in the game.

-This blog has a strong suspicion that a team's best player tends to get hurt when a human is in control of them at a much higher rate than if the human were not controlling them. This blog is going to wait until after all seasons have been played to make a definite analysis, but that's the hypothesis Pun City is going with.

Pun City saw a cool show last Friday at Senor Java's. Check out Gabe Krebs live if you get a chance. Krebs's next show is an open mic 7/13 at the same venue in Saukville (7:00 maybe? Senor Java has a MySpace page if you want specifics).

In conclusion, this blog is happy that Paris Hilton was freed earlier this week. Hopefully she can get back in the studio and crank out some more hott tracks. Pun City will snatch them up if they get made.

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Sunday, June 24, 2007

Pun City: A Winner Even With Stupid Human Tricks

Good evening. It's been an interesting week.

Wednesday morning, on my way to work, 99.1 WMYX, a Milwaukee radio station, was taking calls on their morning show for people with stupid human tricks. The winner would get a guaranteed audition with CBS 58, a Milwaukee TV station that would send the tapes in to The Late Show with David Letterman. Letterman's producers would then judge the submissions and potentially invite you on to the show. This blog knows a few stupid human tricks, 3 of which are really unique, so Pun City figured it would call in.

The Jane and Kidd's show producer liked the thought of 3 tricks, so he said he'd call back since they were about to go to a break. He called back in around an hour and they taped an interview with this blog. Both deejays seemed to like Pun City and they had this blog hang on the line so they could potentially call back and have Pun City on as a finalist Thursday. This blog was taking off Thursday afternoon anyway, so it asked for the whole day off and was fortunately granted as much. Pun City was then called back and told it was indeed a finalist.

Thursday morning was pretty cool, got to go on Jane & Kidd's show on 99.1 WMYX. They had Van McNeil, an afternoon deejay and major David Letterman fan, in to judge. The other finalists this blog was up against were a double-jointed white trashy woman and a huge tattooed guy that had trained his Scottish Terrier to carry a bowling ball. (The call had been for both stupid human tricks and stupid pet tricks).

Had a decent interview with Jane and Kidd, demonstrated the stupid human tricks (one-handed clap, an eye trick Pun City has been encouraged to call "the eye-brator", and sucking this blog's upper lip flush with its nose). Van was freaked out with the eye-brator, he'd never seen that one before, plus the one-handed clap played well on the radio. Pun City had been the first one to go.

The double-jointed woman had the standard double-jointed tricks, bending her thumbs back to her wrist, fingers all the way back, did the dishrag thing where she grabbed it with both hands and rotate her shoulders all the way around without letting go. This blog can't do that, but tons of double-jointed people can, and even more people have seen that.

Scottish terrier guy had us go outside and the dog pushed the ball around for a minute, then found the holes and carried it for a few seconds. The guy then had it go to the bathroom (#1) while carrying it. Dude seemed pretty proud of the #1 part of it, apparently had just trained him to do that the day prior. Everyone else just kind of thought it was weird.

We went back inside, they hadn't had their camera for this blog's segment so they re-shot a similar interview, this time for their website. All of the above-mentioned segments had been taped first, then aired about 4 minutes later on the radio. The next segment was live, however, and none of the contestants had been informed of what Van was about to say.

He made a comment about how he'd seen double-jointed people before but it was a good talent. He then said that he was still freaked out by the eye-brator, and then said he didn't see too many dogs carrying around bowling balls. (He was working from left to right in the sound booth, in the order the contestants were standing). At this point, Pun City was figuring he was going to give the win to the dog, since everyone loves a dog, and this blog was thinking there was no shame in losing to a dog in this case. But then Van says "But you know what, I gotta give it to (Pun City)."

That was pretty cool. Decades of using stupid human tricks vindicated. As it turned out, all 3 of the contestants got to audition privately, but it was still cool to be the winner.

Saturday this blog had to go to a car dealership where CBS 58 was holding the auditions. This blog had briefly spoken to a station representative earlier; WMYX had said that 58 would be calling Pun City, but no call had been made by 4:30 on Friday. This blog called 58 and spoke to the rep, who was unaware that he was supposed to be calling the 3 of us. It wasn't a huge deal since this blog pretty much knew the relevant information; however this was the first time this blog became aware that Letterman's producers would not be there in person.

This wasn't ideal, but whatever. This blog went to the dealership Saturday and it was a strange scene. A combination of overbearing TV personnel, overbearing car salesmen, people with weird talents, and perhaps strangest of all, people who came just to watch the festivities. This blog was waiting a little while and saw the bowling ball guy, and a dog that hadn't quite learned a trick where it plays dead after hearing "bang". There were a couple other strange tricks, one involving whistling like a bird and one person using her mouth as a trumpet. This blog appreciated the effort of those two, but it really doesn't think those are especially unique or difficult. Hopefully they aren't too much competition.

This blog went, and the 58 guy must have liked it because he encouraged Pun City to continue the tricks for a longer duration after the first run-through. The assembled crowd did have a big round of applause for Pun City after it went, so this blog is crossing its fingers. No way of knowing for a while here, so this blog is going to have to let you know if it gets a call some time down the road.

UPDATE: The video has been posted for WMYX, here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAwKrSVKAr4

It didn't pick up the eye trick very well, but the other two are good.

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Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Roach Hotels and New Daylight Savings Time: True March Madness

Final Trip Recap (Recap #10), March 10th, 9th day of the trip. As promised, literally and figuratively a lot of ground to cover. First off, on 3/10, this blog got to check out an extremely expensive mall along the Boardwalk. It's probably within 2 blocks of Boardwalk Hall, but this blog had avoided it because it looked small and overpriced.

This day, Pun City had some extra time though, and found out that it was way off. The mall is large and overpriced. Deceptively large actually. Three levels of ridiculously expensive stores, including a Fila that was passing itself off as "high-end". This blog doesn't know, maybe that's their business plan these days, but it seems really weird coming from a company that sells low-quality shoes.

After going through the mall and mainly window shopping since this blog wasn't going to be getting anything at Coach or Nieman Marcus anytime soon, this blog headed to Boardwalk Hall's "Fan Zone" to watch as much of the Wisconsin-Illinois Big Ten Semifinal as it could. Pun City was fortunate in that the Badger game was on the in-house TVs. Also fortunate was that those suckers are effectively locked on any channel they're set at because the channel changer is locked up and the Best Buy-supplied plasmas didn't have any buttons on them. So this blog just sat back, relaxed, and enjoyed the game as fans around it kept futilely trying to switch to either the Big East or SEC games in progress. This blog was almost laughing at them until some gambling addict got the arena control supervisor to open the lock and the channel changed. Not awesome. Luckily Wisconsin had virtually clinched it by then and they did end up pulling through. However, this blog wasn't thrilled with George Washington's fans based on this poor representative.

George Washington did pull the win out though, a pretty competitive affair where the game was in doubt until around 4:41 remaining. Coach Karl Hobbs celebrated just in front of this blog's seat with the Colonials' fans.

After the Atlantic 10 final finished, this blog headed over to a casino sports bar and caught some more games on TV, then ventured back to the hotel. As always when it came to this hotel, things got interesting then.

1. On cue, the room key didn't work (typical).

2. This blog headed to the good ol' front desk to retrieve a new one. While Pun City was there, this blog figured it would ask for a wake-up call.

2a. This blog knew it was going to be a a rough going asking for the wake-up call, because the dude had missed 2 out of 3 calls previously.

2b. Adding to the problem is that it was Daylight Savings Time. Not just any Daylight Savings Time, mind you, but the first Daylight Savings Time since they switched the date.

3. Dude doesn't speak English well, and acts like he speaks it worse. There is very little chance he's going to understand Daylight Savings Time. If he does understand, there's really no way of knowing.

4. This blog needs a 4:00 AM wake-up call. This will seem like 3:00 AM with the "Spring Forward". If this dude blows the wake-up call, Pun City isn't going to naturally wake up at that time.

4a. Let Pun City emphasize the NEEDS part of that "This blog NEEDS a 4:00 AM wake-up call" sentence. There's a huge drive ahead, and then a flight to catch. Granted, there's a little wiggle room in there for travel time and possible extra gate-clearing time built in, but it would be very easy to oversleep this by 3 hours.

Did you ever NEED a miracle but the only way you're getting it is from one of, if not the most, incompetent, ill-equipped, miserable jaghole you've ever met?

After an extremely long and frustrating conversation in which the dude seemed convinced at multiple times that Pun City wanted 2 wake-up calls, the dude showed a thorough misconception of Daylight Savings Time, and made it clear that he did not have an automated system for the wake-up calls. It was probably about midnight, so this blog seriously doubted dude would be awake to make the call, but dude repeatedly assured Pun City that the wake-up call would be made and that this blog didn't have to worry. He said this in a voice that made Pun City feel convinced that this dude wanted Pun City out of his office above all else. At this point, this blog was tired, knew that it had a long day ahead, and chose sleep over arguing with some Indian idiot that might actually be helpful.

Needless to say, this blog set its phone alarm. And its watch alarm.

April 11th, 10th day of the trip - 4:00 AM. Feels like 3:00 AM. Watch alarm goes off. Shortly thereafter, the phone alarm goes off. Pun City wakes up. This blog finishes packing, washes up, and gets ready to check out and go. It's probably 4:15. No wake-up call.

This blog is checking out anyway, so it figures it's going to let him have it. Here's a rough paraphrasing of the conversation:

Pun City: (This blog) was supposed to have a wake-up call at 4:00, why didn't this happen?

Idiot: It's not 4:00 yet.

PC: It's 4:15!!! (Pun City) just explained this to you last night!!

Idiot: Why would I give you a wake-up call at 4:00? You're checking out now.

PC: What?! Wait, WHAT?! It's 4:15 RIGHT NOW! You were supposed to give (Pun City) a wake-up call FIFTEEN MINUTES AGO!

Idiot: You didn't ask for that, I can only give you one wake-up call.

PC: (Pun City) DID ask for that! I only wanted one wake-up call! Last night, we talked about it for 10 minutes! You said not to worry about it!!

Idiot: (shakes head)

PC: (Completely exasperated and just astonished anyone could be this dumb): "You have (Pun City's) keys. This is all you need for (this blog) to check out, right?

Idiot: Yes

PC: So we're good, we're done?

Idiot: Yes

PC: Fine.

Stunning. Just stunning. How can anyone stay in business with that little grasp on the English language? How can anyone stay in business with that little grasp on common courtesy, common sense, and rudimentary intelligence? This blog finally just left so that it wouldn't have any of the stupidity rub off on it. Frankly, this blog was just ecstatic that it didn't have to deal with him anymore.

Long ride back to Richmond, Virginia, this time without having to deal with Washington DC's rush-hour traffic (since it was a Sunday). On the way up, while running late, this blog had noticed that the University of Maryland was on the route between the two cities. There wasn't nearly enough time to stop then, but today there was a little extra time. This blog was able to check out the Comcast Center, home to Terrapins basketball, and even got to go out on to the floor.

They also had the floor from Cole Field House, Maryland's old home stadium that was where Texas Western beat Kentucky for the NCAA title featured in "Glory Road".

The trip moved on to the Richmond Airport, sat in the Sam Adams Lounge for a while, eventually succeeding in getting the bartender to switch from Meet The Press or something over to basketball. Shortly in to that, it was time to fly out from Richmond to Chicago, where Pun City would have a layover during CBS's Selection Show, and then a flight back to Milwaukee thereafter.

At O'Hare Airport in Chicago, this blog settled in at the Chili's, which was the first place this blog could find with TVs. CBS was on already, so this blog just sat back and enjoyed as they listed the top seeds.

During a commercial break, a woman wearing fur approached the bartender. This blog could only hear the bartender asking "Is that local fox?"

This blog assumed he was asking her about the fur coat. Turns out it was "Is that local Fox?" that he was asking. She wanted NASCAR on. No. Frickin. Way.

The highest-rated, most-watched, most-relevant part of March Madness, and you are switching over to some Snoozecar Race? The woman said we could switch it back, she just wanted to see who was winning. This is fair, alright, cooler heads prevailed.

But wait. Some rube trying to score points with the woman jumped on the Nascar bandwagon and said we should just leave it there. That was it. This blog had already closed its tab there so it had no real claim (other than common sense, which clearly had no value at this bar) to switching it back to CBS, so Pun City immediately bolted the scene in search of more sane pastures.

Pun City found refuge in some type of family diner that had the Selection Show on, just before a table was being cleared. This blog didn't care, Pun City just sat at the table with its notebook scribbling down the brackets, even with a heap of dirty dishes in front of it.

No white trash Nascar monger, horny idiot, or stack of crum-ridden plates was going to prevent this blog from knowing what the brackets were. Especially since it would have relative "communication silence" for the Chicago-to-Milwaukee flight.

In the end, this blog was able to get the brackets filled, hear some analysis, and laugh at Syracuse's exclusion before the flight, during which Pun City looked for possible upset potential. The picks made that night led to an eventual 8th-place finish in this blog's pool, which wasn't too bad given the large number of high-seeded teams that lived up to their seeding this year. This concludes the Pun City Trip 2007, hope you enjoyed it.

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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Pouring a Forty For This Blog's Homie, Paris Hilton

First off, as has been this blog's recent trend, Pun City is going to regurgitate another website's recommendation and give this link to an extremely hilarious video clip:


Now that the link-o-the-week is out of the way, this blog can move back to the trip recap.

Previously, on Pun City....

...and Scene.

Trip Recap #9 - March 9th, 8th day of the trip. The night before, this blog had gotten back to the hotel and inserted the room's keycard into the door. (Yes, the room had keycards, this blog was as stunned as anyone, but hold that thought...). Inconveniently enough though, for the second night in a row, the keycard didn't work. Also, the backup keycard did not work.

After last night's card not working, and several minutes of being accused of rubbing the magnetic strip against my credit card's magnetic strip, the hotel had courteously provided two non-working keycards as a sign of good faith. This time, armed with both keycards as proof of the recurring, inexcuseable problem, this blog marched into the nice moron's, er, hotel manager's office. The following is an approximate transcript of the conversation:

Pun City: "Hey, the keycard didn't work again. Actually, neither of them did."

Moron: "Did you rub them against each other?"

PC: (Shaking head, lifting hands skyward, and using 'Goddammit, we've been through this before, and why would anyone do that anyway?' face) - "No."

M: "Did you have them next to a credit card?"

PC: (Visibly incensed): "Ugh! No!"

M: "Oh, well, it's too cold for them to work, here's a new one."

AAAAAAHHHHH! Why would you even accuse the customer of doing something ridiculous like that if you were just going to use the cold excuse anyway? You had the cold excuse built in, this blog probably would have just let it go! Fricking Jaghole!

Customer's always right, eh?

Not at Absecon's Rodeway Inn. This blog would like to clarify so that Pun City is not involuntarily libeling the other Rodeway Inn in Absecon, which this blog briefly stopped at thinking it was this blog's lodging. The one at 200 E White Horse Pike, which is technically in Galloway, is the problem one. There are a couple others on E White Horse Pike that this blog can't vouch for. The one this blog briefly stopped at gave good directions to the lousy one.

This blog does seem to recall the wake-up call actually happening at the requested time this day, so that was a surprisingly good start. That gave Pun City some time to head over to Hamilton Mall. This was a solid mall. Lots of sports offerings in the mall, this blog was pleasantly surprised by a store called "Fadz" in the mall. This blog is equally surprised by how little information there is about the retail outlet online. If you can find something, let Pun City know, because this blog came up empty.

In a final non-basketball note, this blog inadvertantly used a full-service gas station. This blog didn't even know it was full-service until some dude came out of a booth and asked how much this site wanted in the tank. Since this blog would have preferred to pump its own gas, and the guy didn't speak too much English or do anything notable, this blog didn't dole out a tip.

The games of the day were Xavier vs. Rhode Island; and Saint Louis vs. George Washington. GWU slashed SLU, and Rhode Island beat the #1-seeded Musketeers. During the Xavier game, this blog struck up a conversation with a guy sitting in a nearby group. He was wearing an Illinois shirt and somewhat rooting for Xavier. He was there with Xavier fans but not really a Xavier fan himself. He asked what Pun City was doing there after this blog told him that it was a Wisconsin fan. This blog told him that it was just travelling alone and that every year Pun City just packs up and heads to a bunch of conference tournaments. After digesting that for a minute, the Illini fan smiled and said, "That's every guy's dream!" He then proceeded to tell everyone in his group what Pun City was there for, and it was some pretty good vindication for this blog's odyssey.

Some band notes:

Xavier's band played Jet's "Cold Hard Bitch," Europe's "Final Countdown," Smashmouth's "I'm A Believer," the theme from Blues Brothers, and Low Rider.

GWU's band played Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody," Journey's "More Than A Feeling," and a medley of "Owner of a Lonely Heart" and "Smoke On The Water".

The SLU-GWU game ended up being Brad Soderberg's last game as coach of the Billikens. This blog sort of wishes it had seen Rick Majerus coach them, but this blog imagines it will probably get to see him coach live sometime soon given Majerus's affinity for the Milwaukee area and the number of teams in the area.

Next Trip Recap should be a good one. The Rodeway Inn manager's piece-de-resistance, the Atlantic 10 final of Rhode Island vs. George Washington, a drive back to Richmond to catch a flight, a stop at Maryland's Comcast Center, Selection Sunday madness, two flights and 3 airports. Two days, one game, and a whole lot of other stuff going on. Don't miss it, this blog plans on Next Tuesday. Hopefully a post in between there on other stuff.

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Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Absecon's Rodeway Inn: Quaint And Shit

Trip Recap #8 - March 8th, 7th day of the trip. On the one hand, very glad Pun City didn't have to drive, especially considering the fiasco from the day before. On the other hand, not the greatest night's sleep. As alluded to in last week's post, this blog was staying at a dump.

After checking in late the night prior, this blog went to its assigned room, and flipped the light switch. Only one of two bulbs was working. Not a huge deal, but a bad omen. Grabbed the remote, hit the "On" button for the TV. Didn't work. After a brief inspection, this blog discovered that the batteries from the remote were gone. Also not a great sign. This site went into the bathroom and discovered that it had all kinds of muddy footprints in it. Ridiculous. This would not stand.

The Indian-American clerk was soon informed of this substandard room. He seemed very unsurprised by this development, but suggested that Pun City could have another room. This was acceptable for Pun City. The new room had none of the fantastic amenities from the first room, but did feature an eclectic collection of circa-1950s furniture, none of which was matching and all of which seemed to have been purchased second-hand or retrieved from a dumpster.

This blog saw a sign advertising free WiFi at the hotel, which was stunning since this represented a piece of technology about 30 years newer than any other technology at the place. As this blog had come to expect, however, the WiFi didn't really work. As with all other problems at the hotel, the service staff was happy to put up a major language barrier instead of fixing it right away. Or at all. All manner of excuses and blame were provided though, free of charge. "It's too cold out." "You need to have it closer to the signal." "Just turn it on, it should work."

Whatever dude. Just give me a wake-up call tomorrow at 11:00 AM.

Fast Forward to 10:00 AM on May 8th. "HOUSEKEEPING!!" This motel had to have a staff of about 4. Probably all family. Despite this seemingly easy line of communication, apparently it was not intuitive that an 11:00 wake-up call would imply a sleeping hotel guest at 10:00. So much for getting extra sleep. Oh, and there was no wake-up call at 11:00 AM. (This blog was already up, but come on, aren't those things automated?)

Urgh. More to come on that one, it doesn't get particularly better.

Xavier vs. Dayton was the game of the day to start with. Xavier Head Coach Sean Miller was pretty fun to watch. Dayton had a player make an awkward motion that could have arguably been a travelling violation. No call was made however, despite Miller's protests of "That was a travel!!" Minutes later, Dayton put up a shot that was most likely a long 2-pointer, but there was some question on whether it was a 3-pointer and the play was reviewable. Miller asked why the referees were huddled around the television monitor, and was told they were "checking to see if it was a 3". At this point, Miller exclaimed, "Well, can you CHECK to see if that was a travel before??"

The refs took exception to this remark but did not assess a technical. Xavier did win however, at which point their students rained a taunt on to the Dayton fans, chanting "Wright State's Dancing!" (clap, clap, clap-clap clap). (Wright State is of course the crosstown rival of Dayton).

In later games, Rhode Island beat Fordham in a battle of the Rams, Saint Louis upset #1 seeded UMass (major bonus since UMass had waaay worse cheerleaders); and George Washington defeated Saint Joseph's. Toward the end of that game, GWU's students chanted "We killed the Hawk!" This roused the SJU faithful to chant "The Hawk Will Never Die!"

A very fun day after leaving the hotel, this blog will pick it up back at the hotel next time.

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