Friday, August 27

The Friday (Saturday?) Random Ten+5 throws out some prognostications.

My apologies for the Friday Random Ten+5 getting pushed back a good 24 hours -- unexplained molasses in my Internet connection have prevented me from getting just about anything done during that time, but the problem seems to have been (mostly) alleviated. So I thought I'd toss out some predictions involving varying degrees of ballsiness about the 2010 football season. Only one of them has to do with the Bulldogs, mind, and nearly all of them are pulled straight out of my ass, but hey, if that's not what the preseason is for, then what, I ask you, is it for? Anyway, here's the +5 for this last Friday before the glorious dawning of another season -- Five Random-Ass Predictions About College Football in 2010:

The Georgia secondary will key noticeable statistical improvement by the Georgia defense.
Look, let's not beat around the bush here -- going from a 4-3 front to a 3-4 is not an overnight project, and the Bulldog defense is going to struggle this year. But by the end of the season I think we'll feel pretty confident about the direction in which Todd Grantham has us pointed, and I think a big part of that is going to be our pass defense, of all things. The more I hear about Scott Lakatos, the more I like him -- he did an excellent job at UConn with nowhere near the kind of blue-chip talent we have access to down here -- and if nothing else, he seems to have completely replaced Willie Martinez's philosophy of "If you're a senior, you start, regardless of whether you have any idea what you're doing" with the revolutionary idea that the better players play. And we've got some good ones -- Bacarri Rambo and Brandon Boykin both looked good last season, and Vance Cuff and Sanders Commings are two guys I'm also very excited about. It's been a long time since our pass defense didn't give acid reflux to entire stadiums full of people, but I think Lakatos has us on the way back.

The game of the year will be the "Civil War" -- Oregon vs. Oregon State for a trip to the Rose Bowl.
With the USC dynasty apparently over and Oregon coming off a rather tumultuous offseason, there are no invincible teams in the Pac-10 this year, and the race for the conference title should be very interesting. I don't think it'll be decided until the very last weekend of the regular season, when Oregon and Oregon State play in Corvallis with the winner taking all. OSU seems to be mostly flying underneath the radar this year, but they've got a ton of returning talent and have, I'm told, one of the Pac-10's scarier home-field advantages. I had the Beavers at #16 in my preseason BlogPoll ballot and wouldn't be surprised to see them higher than that in the mainstream polls by the time bowl invites are handed out.

Boise State and UConn will go to BCS bowls; USC and Texas won't.
Boise State, I think, could get there even if they lose to Virginia Tech -- they're ranked high enough in the preseason, and the VT game is early enough, that they've got plenty of time to work their way back into the top 10 -- and I'm more convinced every day that UConn is going to come out of basically nowhere to win the Big East this year. As for USC, I just don't get why so many people are ranking them as the favorite to win the Pac-10 title again. Sure, pound for pound they may be the most talented team in the Pac-10 on paper, but they probably were last year, too, and all it got them was an 8-4 regular-season record and a trip to something that is now called the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl -- and that was with Pete Carroll. You really think Kiffykins is a money bet to do any better? After the off-season they've had? As for Texas, I think they'll be fine on defense, but first-year starting QB (even if he is incredibly talented) plus big questions on the O-line plus a running game that's been non-existent for two years now equals a team that may be counting its blessings just to get back to the Holiday Bowl. I think they'll be right back in the thick of the title hunt next year, but 2010 is gonna require some rebuilding.

Added: Have been reminded that USC is under a bowl ban for the next two seasons. So, uh . . . hey! I got one right already! [smiles nervously, slinks awkwardly off stage]

The postseason firings will be less notable for who gets fired (Brewster, Zook, Friedgen) than who doesn't (Rodriguez, Hawkins, Price).
As I explained in the "Hot Seat" post I did on Rich Rodriguez earlier this summer for Dr. Saturday, Michigan is one of the few remaining programs in the country that looks for reasons not to fire a head coach, and if Rodriguez can just squeeze the Wolverines back into a bowl (which I think he will) he'll get enough of a vote of confidence to last another year. Hawkins, too, stands a good chance of getting Colorado back into a bowl this season, and CU's decision to delay their entry into the Pac-10 until 2012 may have earned him some extra time (though if he goes 4-8 next season, they'll waste no time unloading him so that they can get a fresh start in their new conference). Price, meanwhile, is a guy who appears to be well-liked enough in El Paso that he might be able to survive even another 5-7 season (though I think UTEP gets back into a bowl this year, too).

Hottest seats heading into 2011: Les Miles, who I think is poised for a mediocre year in Baton Rouge that will more than likely initiate the tried-and-true assistant housecleaning in the offseason; Mike Gundy, who has the fewest returning starters in the country this season and has already been the target of grumbling from T. Boone Pickens; and Butch Davis, who could also be headed for a disappointing season and has the added pressure of a player-eligiblity scandal that seems to be building by the day.

Alabama and Oklahoma will face off for the national title.
Not a very outside-the-box pick, I know, but I think Bama will weather their defensive rebuilding a lot better than some people seem to think. Meanwhile, Oklahoma -- while I don't think they're a better team than Ohio State, at least on paper -- will have the advantage of an easier schedule; a late-season loss to Wisconsin, Penn State, or Iowa will put the Buckeyes just far enough back that they miss out on a title shot. Their disappointment, however, will be nothing compared to that of Boise State fans, who will watch their team go undefeated for the fourth time in five regular seasons but still get boxed out of the national-title game. (At which point Orrin Hatch will demand immediate Congressional action, perhaps even involving impeachment hearings.)

Now watch as none of these five things turn out to have been accurate by the end of the season. But until then, the Ten:

1. Pet Shop Boys, "New York City Boy" (The Thunderpuss 2000 club mix)
2. 3rd Bass, "M.C. Disagree"
3. U2, "She's Gonna Blow Your House Down"
4. Toto, "Africa" (shut up)
5. Phil Collins, "Sussudio" (shut up twice)
6. U2, "4th of July"
7. Asian Dub Foundation, "Return of Django"
8. 3rd Bass, "The Merchant of Grooves"
9. Crowded House, "Catherine Wheels"
10. Pet Shop Boys, "Hit Music"

Apologies again for the lateness of this week's Ten+5 -- feel free to regale us all with your own predictions for the upcoming season, and Random Tens, in the comments.

OK, but seriously, whoever invented that should be shot.

Construction of the Friday Random Ten+5 has been delayed by technical issues (and a plate full of writing assignments that turned out to be a lot fuller than I anticipated), but in the meantime, here's a funny for your Friday morning:

Now, here's the part where you stop laughing: That "Cami Secret" thing is a real product. Whose sole purpose appears to be hiding cleavage. And not in any kind of straightforward way, either, but in the cruelest manner possible: "Oh, look at my low-cut top! You like these? WELL, TOUGH LUCK, ASSHOLE, because look at this lacy pin-on bra dickey I'm about to put on." Seriously, that's the kind of thing Mormons would look at and go, "OK, now that is a weird undergarment."

Also available from this same company: the Countertop Coffee De-Caffeinator and the Air Ferry basketball shoe, which is specially weighted to keep you from jumping too high.

I weep for our future.

Thursday, August 26

Pickin' and grinnin'.

You guys enjoy picking, right? Well, here's your chance to throw out more picks than a Georgia Tech quarterback -- the Big Ass Pick'Em Group, the official picks pool of Hey Jenny Slater, is back for another year.

Each week we'll be picking all of the top 25 and SEC games -- picks are against the spread, no confidence points. If you want to join, go here and enter group ID# 14755 and password "bacarri" (all lower-case). The person who's made the most correct picks by the end of the regular season will be the subject of an exclusive interview on HJS; the player who comes up with the funniest and/or filthiest pick set name will also get a shout-out here.

As of right now, the start of college football season is exactly one week away. Good luck, nerds.

Friday, August 20

And now, the Not-So-Random 25.

Just as you can tell it's Christmas season when you can't find a parking space to save your worthless life when you head to the mall, you can tell football season is here when the BlogPoll ballots start popping up.

I'm sure most of y'all know by now what the BlogPoll is -- voting works just like the AP and coaches' polls, but the ballots are all cast by bloggers. This year, though, the poll makes what I think will end up being a very worthwhile move to the SB Nation network, which has given it not only an easier-to-use interface but also more prominence, at a venue run by folks who really get what the poll is supposed to be all about.

So here's my inaugural ballot for 2010. Keep in mind that this is no less wild a stab in the dark than anyone else's; also keep in mind that my ballot in particular is meant to be an attempt at figuring out which teams would beat which other teams on a neutral field right now, not a projection of where everyone's going to end up at the end of the season. It's hard enough to predict the outcome of one game; I'm not even going to try to do that for 12 or 13.

But anyway, let's get started, with the honorable mentions first.

Brigham Young. Always going to be competitive, though in their case that's just good enough to get them to a Las Vegas Bowl. If they go this year, and there's plenty of reasons to think they will, that'd be their sixth trip in a row to Sin City. What do Mormons do in Vegas, anyway? This has never been adequately explained to me.

Utah. If the Cougars don't make it to Vegas, their neighbors up the road in Salt Lake just might.

South Carolina. With all that returning talent coming back, this is Spurrier's year to make a run at the SEC East if he's ever going to do it. But the Gamecocks have given up 30+ sacks and had a league-worst rushing game for three years running, and that's a big stigma for a perennial also-ran to overcome.

Southern California. Even before Pete Carroll left, this team's returning-talent situation was going to be dicey, particularly for a team that'd surprised everyone with an 8-5 face plant the year before. Then Carroll booked back to the NFL. Then they hired Kiffykins. Then the NCAA sanctions dropped and players started leaving right and left. Look, maybe this is residual Kiffinfreude talking, and if that turns out to be the case I'll be the first to step up and admit I was wrong come January -- but I'm hardly going out on a limb by suggesting that the Trojan dynasty is on hiatus at the moment, or that they might have to content themselves with a trip back to the Emerald Bowl this year (or the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl, or whatever they're calling it now). They might be lucky to make it that high.

Florida State. Talent-wise, this is a pretty solid group, though the defense has got a good bit of ground to make up. My biggest questions concern Jimbo Fisher, whom I'm still not sold on as a head coach. The 'Noles are nevertheless the best bet to represent a bad division in Charlotte this December, but if they only get there at 7-5 and then get blown out by, say, Virginia Tech, is that really all that big an improvement from the mediocrity that eventually pushed Bobby Bowden out the door?

And now we begin with the actual top 25 . . .

25: North Carolina. Most returning talent in the ACC by a wide margin, killer defense, potential superstars all over the place -- yet a lot of that was true in 2009, too, and I couldn't keep from covering my eyes every time the offense took the field. Still might only be the fourth-best team in their division.

24: Arizona. Gonna have to win a lot of shootouts this year, but let's face it, in this year's Pac-10 that's still enough of an endorsement to count them as a Rose Bowl contender. For this year, at least, we may be heading back to the late '90s, when it seemed like every Pac-10 game ended 51-48.

23: Pittsburgh. I originally had Pitt ranked above the next team you'll see on this list, and then decided I was just being a sheep following the pack of people who seem to think the Panthers are the de facto money bet to win a lousy Big East this season. They'll compete for the conference title, but outside of running back there's not really any particular unit that blows me away on this team.

22: Connecticut. If you're looking for a sleeper to tout ad nauseam and confound all your buddies with, friends, here is your team. Sixteen starters back from a team that was 15 points away from going undefeated last year. Take out the mid-season suckerpunch they had to endure -- the tragic murder of defensive back Jasper Howard -- and it could've been the Huskies in the Sugar Bowl. Keep your eye on these guys.

21: Arkansas. Best quarterback in the SEC? Stipulated. I'll even go out on a not-very-skinny limb and say they'll field the best offense in the conference period. But they're coming off two straight years of worst-in-the-league defense (the more recent of which was accomplished by a unit with 10 returning starters), and in what's arguably the tougher of the SEC's two divisions this year, that's probably not good enough to crack the 10-win barrier.

20: Georgia. Ever the hard-nosed realist, Kyle left the Dawgs off his preseason ballot entirely, which for karma's sake is probably what I should've done. It wouldn't take a huge miracle for Georgia to have a special season in 2010, but it would take their newly realigned defense growing up in a big, big hurry. The talent is there, though, and contrary to the pundits who don't really follow Georgia closely enough to know what they're talking about (coughPaulFinebaumcough), I think the coaching is, too.

19: California. A cursory glance at their roster seems to indicate the Golden Bears are talented enough to win the Pac-10 this year -- it just seems like they always do something in the first month of the season that makes you think, "Yeah, they're not for real after all."

18: Houston. On paper, they've got a chance to finish the regular season 12-0 -- not as much of a chance as, say, Boise State or TCU, but not that far off, either. The defense needs to get a lot better, though. That unit's inconsistency was a big part of how the Cougars could pull of stunning upsets over Big XII teams but then get strafed by UTEP and UCF.

17: Georgia Tech. This isn't that far below where most of the pundits seem to have Tech ranked, but I can hear their indignant fans already: "HOW CAN YOU PUT US SO LOW, WE STILL HAVE NESBITT, OUR DEFENSE IS GONNA BE BETTER, STUPID UGAY BULLDOG." (Yeah, they're the kind that type in all caps.) Nesbitt can ball, but let's be real here -- he's not the beating heart of this offense, Jonathan Dwyer and Demaryius Thomas were, and they're both gone. As for the defense, if you think your transition to a 3-4 is gonna be any more easily wrapped up than ours, best of luck to you, fellas.

16: Oregon State. Fast, gutsy, and one of the few Pac-10 squads that consistently plays defense year in and year out. Bastard of a non-con schedule (TCU, Louisville, and Boise State in the first three games of the season), so don't lose faith just because they start 1-2 -- I think they'll still be in the running for the Rose Bowl into November.

15: Texas. OK, I can see how one might perceive a disconnect between the above photo and the ranking, which is quite a bit lower than where I've seen most other people put the Longhorns. But we're not ranking pom squads, we're ranking teams, and I think UT is going to struggle more than people realize this year. For the record, Garrett Gilbert isn't this team's problem -- it's a rebuilding offensive line and a running game that has been AWOL for a couple years now. The defense should be excellent, but the Big XII is not the kind of league where you want to only be scoring 20 points a game these days.

14: Nebraska. Also too low? Maybe -- their offense certainly has to be better than the 2009 version almost by default. But if you checked out Ndamukong Suh's stat line from last season (check comment #5 here), you might share my doubts that the 'Husker D will be able to weather his departure without missing a beat.

13: Oregon. Enough players are coming back from last year's Pac-10 title squad that the dismissal of Jeremiah Masoli isn't necessarily the end of the world. Nate Costa better stay healthy, though, and that's not something he's done tremendously well the last few years.

12: Wisconsin. Their offense is going to be beastly; their defense, though, will take a big hit from losing three guys on the line. And though they may have stunned Miami in their bowl game last season, let's not forget that they also had to survive nailbiters against the likes of Northern Illinois, Minnesota, and Indiana.

11: Penn State. Somehow I've gotten it in my head that Joe Paterno sat down with his team a few weeks ago and told them that this was his last season and not to tell anybody. Upon further reflection, I still may have the Nittany Lions ranked too high, but they're going to play good defense and run the ball extremely well, and that still seems to be a pretty good way of winning a bunch of games in the Big Ten.

10: Miami. Phil Steele seems to think they're going to win the ACC, and they seem like as good a candidate as any. But Jacory Harris got hung out to dry pretty badly in a couple games last season where his O-line didn't step up, and that looks like it's going to be a pretty big risk this season as well.

9: Iowa. Another team that's probably ranked too high, especially given all the beef they've lost on the offensive line, but again, they've got a deep stable of running backs and their defense doesn't look like it should drop off much. Plus they've got Ricky Stanzi, the most American quarterback in college football history. If ever there was a guy who screamed "throw four interceptions but still pull out a win by three points," it's that guy.

8: Auburn. Maybe my biggest reach in this entire list, and no, I can't believe I'm putting a Gene Chizik team in the top 10 either. But I prefer to think of this team not as Chizik's but rather as Gus Malzahn's, and if Malzahn can turn Chris Fricking Todd into a worldbeater, I can only imagine the kind of assassin he'll be able to fashion out of a QB who was once poisted to inherit Tebow's circumcision scalpel at Florida. If there's a looming undoing on this team, it's Ted Roof and his defense, though it bears mentioning that nearly everybody else in their division has some major questions to answer on that side of the ball as well. All I'm saying is don't be surprised if the Tigers have already made it to double-digit wins by the time they roll into Tuscaloosa the day after Thanksgiving.

7: Virginia Tech. Yup, this is probably the fourth or fifth year in a row I've had the Hokies ranked too high in the preseason, but the joke's on you, assholes: That fifth punch on my card means I get a free six-inch sub at the Subway in Blacksburg (with the purchase of any sub of equal or greater value, of course).

6: Florida. Considering that the Gators finished last season at #3, I probably haven't dinged them nearly enough spots for losing Tebow, Charlie Strong, and pretty much every receiver who amounted to anything last season. But what can I say, I know better than to make the dismissive wanking gesture in Urban Meyer's direction at this point. Not quite complete enough to make a run for the national title this year, or even necessarily win the SEC, but I see an at-large BCS bid somewhere in their future.

5: TCU. Came close to knocking off Boise State in the Separate But Equal Bowl last year, and I think they were good enough to have done the same to Texas had things shaken out that way. The loss of DE Jerry Hughes takes a big bite out of their pass rush, but at every other position they look like they could be better than last year. (And no, I don't know what it is about the state of Texas and pom squads.)

4: Oklahoma. Maybe I'm drinking too much of the Phil Steele Kool-Aid with this one, but Phil Steele's Kool-Aid is pretty good, actually. Consider that losing Sam Bradford in the second quarter of their season opener was only the start of the Sooners' injury troubles last year, yet they still came within a single score of beating Miami, Texas, and Nebraska -- combined margin of loss only 11 points, in fact. Landry Jones, in particular, had a fantastic year, especially considering he wasn't supposed to be doing anything other than mop-up duty when the season started. So go ahead and put them in the Fiesta Bowl again (even if they'll only lose it once they get there).

3: Boise State. Twenty starters coming back from a team that went 14-0 last season? Yeah, I'd say they're worthy of being in the national-title discussion. I know the support for that view is hardly unanimous, and yeah, once you get past the early games against VaTech (in D.C.) and Oregon State (at home), their schedule is pretty soft-serve. But if they beat those two BCS-conference teams, then sweep their WAC slate, who's to say they don't deserve a shot at the crystal football? Particularly if they're one of only two undefeated teams left standing?

2: Ohio State. I've had to remind myself of Michael Elkon's "Charles Rogers Theorem" and not go completely bug-nuts over the Buckeyes just because they surprised the whole world (including Jim Tressel, I'm guessing) by beating Oregon in the Rose Bowl last season. But let's just say for the sake of argument that Tressel has finally figured out how to use Terrelle Pryor and play some offense. I think we can all agree that that plus tOSU's perennially stifling defense would equal a national-title-worthy team. In fact, I briefly had them at number one, but wussed out and decided I had to go with . . .

1: Alabama. The big knock on this team is that they got ransacked on defense by graduations and the NFL draft. Hey, I'll stipulate that the Tide defense won't be as good as it was last year; I saw all those guys get drafted just like y'all did. But I've also seen Nick Saban and Kirby Smart recruit over the last few years, I've also seen them coach over the last few years, and I just can't willfully suspend the amount of disbelief it would take to picture this defense completely collapsing. I mean, if they allow 75 more yards per game this year, that'd still more than likely put them in the top 25 in total defense nationwide, not to mention the top half of the SEC. No, it's not an imaginative pick, and no, they're not gonna have a third straight 12-0 regular season, but they're still the kings until somebody knocks 'em off.

So what do you think? There's still a few days to mess with this thing before the "official" preseason BlogPoll comes out, so hit me with your suggestions. And no, I'm not gonna do the Steve Spurrier throw-a-bone-to-the-former-employer thing, but if you can make a case that UAB deserves to be in there on the merits, then I'm all ears.

A very non-expendable Friday Random Ten+5.

Soooo last week Holly and I accompanied Josh to a screening of "The Expendables." Really, our motivation for going wasn't to watch the movie so much as watch Josh watching it -- as you can tell by his blog, he's been a wee bit excited about the movie for, oh, a year and a half now. So you can imagine our dismay -- to say nothing of Josh's -- when it turned out that the movie, to put it politely, stunk on ice. Basically, it was a direct-to-DVD movie with an $82-million budget. I'm still not convinced that the film had a script at all, and yet somehow the actors, for all their badassery, seemed overmatched by what meager dialogue they had. So we didn't get much in the way of characterization, and even less in the way of motivation. (Seriously, when Mickey Rourke is the deepest and most soulful character in your story, you've got problems, particularly when he's only on screen for a total of maybe 10 minutes.) And while all of this kvetching about dialogue and character might seem irrelevant in a movie that clearly sells itself as a pretty mindless action flick, even the action scenes descended into complete incoherence after a while. It's pretty hard to bore me with gunfights and massive explosions, but somehow "The Expendables" managed it. The one exception: Terry Crews and his automatic shotgun. Messing with either is inadvisable.

It did get us to talking afterward, though: If we were putting together an ensemble cast of total badasses for some kind of suspense film, be it a good 'n' violent war movie, a caper flick, or whatever else, who would we pick? I don't have the plot of mine quite nailed down yet -- band of grifters hired by the CIA to clean out the entire treasury of a rogue terrorist nation, maybe? I'm still working on it -- but I know who my five badasses would be. Thus this week's +5 is the Five-Man Army For My Ensemble Action Movie:

George Clooney
I know not everyone is crazy about Cloons -- he talks a lot, he can be kind of a dick, he dates women far beyond the caliber of anyone you or I will ever so much as be in the same room with. But that's kind of what makes him a badass, I think. And he was suave as hell in all three of the Ocean's 11/12/13 movies. I see him as being kind of like the American version of James Bond; it's easy to picture him shooting people whilst wearing a tux.

Robert De Niro
Just turned 67, and still has it. And though he won Oscars for "The Godfather Part II" and "Raging Bull," I think my favorite performance of his is in "Casino," a movie I thought was just OK at first but seems to have gotten better and better with age: He plays a character who's smarter than most of the people around him, smart enough to know that the house of cards they've all built for themselves is going to come crashing down eventually, yet he can't keep himself from getting caught up in the glamour and temptation along with them. (Yet I also laugh every time I think of him in "Meet the Parents," asking if it's possible for him to be milked.)

Clive Owen
If Clooney is the American James Bond, Clive Owen wouldn't make a bad British one; if Daniel Craig ever decided to hang up his Aston Martin keys and retire from the franchise, Owen would be first on my shortlist to replace him. Equally adept as a badass ("Inside Man") or as a heavy-drinking sad sack forced by circumstance into becoming one ("Children of Men," one of my top five movies of all time).

Samuel L. Jackson
Permanently ascended into the pantheon of badasses 16 years ago with this line and has since cemented his legacy through "Shaft," "Black Snake Moan," the "Iron Man" films, and being one of the only tolerable things about the "Star Wars" prequels. And now, as Josh points out, he's lending his badassery to support a worthy athletic cause.

Michael Caine
Sir Michael will turn 80 in less than three years, but whatever -- he was one of the original movie hardasses back in the '60s and has retained that title ever since. Even when the movie he's in is absolute crap -- i.e. 1987's "Jaws: The Revenge" -- he manages to maintain his awesomeness: "I have never seen it, but by all accounts it is terrible. However, I have seen the house that it built, and it is terrific." His most recent performance was in "Harry Brown," an average movie featuring an exceptional performance from Caine, and while there was a rumor going around for a while that it would be his last leading role, that has since been debunked, to our great relief.

My movie will be called "The Indispensables," catch it at a theatre near you the twelfth of Never! (Followed by a cash-in direct-to-DVD sequel, "The Machine-Washables," sometime after that.) And now the Ten:

1. Looking Glass, "Brandy (You're a Fine Girl)"
2. John Coltrane, "Resolution"
3. Pet Shop Boys, "I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More" (PSB Extension mix)
4. Jakatta, "American Dream" (Afterlife mix)
5. James Brown, "Papa Don't Take No Mess (Part I)"
6. Radio 4, "New Disco"
7. The Jazz Jury, "Pictures"
8. Talking Heads, "This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)"
9. The Streets, "Has it Come to This?"
10. New Order, "Everything's Gone Green"

Your turn: Give me your five-man ensemble cast of badasses, along with your Random Tens, in the comments.

Monday, August 16

"The witness asked not to be identified so that he does not anger the juggalos."

When the Juggalos came for the Eminem fans,
I remained silent;
I was not an Eminem fan.

When they came for the Osbournes,
I remained silent;
I was not an Osbourne.

When they came for the scientists,
I did not protest;
I was not a scientist.

When they came for the bisexual Asian strippers,
I remained silent;
I was not a bisexual Asian stripper.

When they came for me,
there was no one left to protest.

Friday, August 13

The Friday Random Ten+5 takes this job and shoves it.

By now I'm sure y'all have heard about the strange case of the JetBlue flight attendant who quit his job in dramatic fashion by throwing open one of the plane's rear doors, inflating the emergency escape slide, and sliding the fuck on out of there. There have been conflicting reports about what exactly transpired after Steven Slater's flight from Pittsburgh landed in New York, but from what I've heard, this dude is my god. First of all, if you've ever flown on a plane in your life you know that you're not supposed to get up and start yanking stuff out of the overhead compartment until the plane has "come to a full and complete stop," and if you're willing to start a fight with a flight attendant over said rule, you pretty much deserve whatever's coming to you.

Second, it was an awesome way to quit a job; I've had some jobs I wish I could've unloaded with one-tenth the flair that Slater demonstrated. I've never had a job in which I had immediate access to an inflatable escape slide, but still, I'm sure I could've improvised something, if I'd really had the balls to go through with it. Mental Floss magazine posted a list earlier this week of other panache-filled ways to tell your boss to pound sand; I thought I'd take this opportunity to add a few of my own with this week's +5: Five Other Awesome Ways To Quit Your Job Even If You're Not A Flight Attendant.

Get a bunch of your friends to dress up as FBI agents, storm into your office, and drag you out of there kicking and screaming. This is a good choice if you actually like some of your soon-to-be-former co-workers, because it'll give them the entertainment of endless speculation with one another about what the hell you actually did.

Hire a stripper to jump out of a cake in your boss's office holding a sign that says "[Your name here] quits." Again, fun for everyone in the office. Plus there's cake!

In the middle of a staff meeting, start shaking, and yell "I CAN'T TAKE THIS ANYMORE!" and run right through a window, then pull the ripcord on a parachute you've concealed underneath your clothing. (Note: You should probably wear bulky clothing. Also this only works if your boardroom is at least 50 floors up.)

Call a press conference and say that the best way you can accomplish your job is by not actually having it anymore.

Nail your boss's daughter (or son), write your resignation letter on his/her underwear, and send it to your boss. If you've got any photos of the act that you can sneak into your boss's next PowerPoint presentation, that might be even better.

If I ever quit doing this blog for good, rest assured I'll come up with a killer way of letting you jagbags know. Until then, here's the Ten:

1. Nouvelle Vague, "Human Fly"
2. The Beastie Boys, "Tough Guy"
3. Notorious B.I.G., "Get Money"
4. A Tribe Called Quest, "The Hop"
5. Gnarls Barkley, "The Boogie Monster"
6. The Clash, "Atom Tan"
7. Beck, "Tropicalia"
8. KRS-One, "Real Hip-Hop -- Part II"
9. Stereolab, "Rainbo Conversation"
10. Gorillaz, "M1A1"

Share with us, won't you, your own job-unloading fantasies, and your Random Tens, too, while you're at it.

Friday, August 6

The Friday Random Ten+5 strips down to the bare essentials.

Last week we discussed what not to wear when you're otherwise completely nekkid. I think we can all agree that to walk into the bedroom completely naked except for dark socks or a bicycle helmet would be pretty weird (and emphatically mood-killing). But let's say you want to do a little naked accessorizing for a special occasion. What can you use? Hey Jenny Slater is here to help with the second installment of its fashion-themed +5 series: Five Things It's OK To Wear When You're Otherwise Completely Naked.

White athletic socks
I know what you're thinking: Why is it OK to wear white socks when naked but not black socks? Honestly I can't put it into concise words. Maybe it's the athleticism implied by white socks, whereas dark socks just imply "board meeting" or "senior citizen in dark socks and sandals using his metal detector on the beach." Maybe it's because white socks are a valuable ingredient in any "naughty cheerleader" or Hooters-girl role-playing. But whatever the case, white socks are OK. Stripes at the top are also acceptable if you want to bring your team colors into it.

Sports jerseys
If you're not ready to go with just white socks, a jersey is a good way to protect your virtue while still gearing up for some action. Granted, not everybody is turned on by this, but I think most of the rabid sports fans I know would be thrilled to find that their significant other was willing to combine one of their favorite things, i.e. sports, with another one of their favorite things, i.e. doin' it. Particularly if the jersey in question is from your favorite team. That's a pretty special gesture.

Always awesome. I shouldn't have to explain this one. High heels always a plus. (Excluded from this category: galoshes and duck boots. Oh, and hip waders. Work boots are OK if you're trying to play Sexy Plumber or something, but you've got to exercise caution. That one's not for amateur hour.)

Elbow-length gloves
A touch of class for an otherwise debaucherous situation. Having a girl wearing nothing but elbow-length gloves come into your room lets you imagine you're bedding someone far above your station, living out one of those "illicit affair with a member of the royal family" fantasies. (I'm the only one who has those? OK then.) Or maybe you really are bedding someone far above your station, in which case, so much the better.

There's an element of danger here that's just too awesome to pass up. When someone comes into your room wearing nothing but bullets across their chest, that's basically them saying, "I want to have sex with you, but it's going to be dangerous. In fact, there's a significant chance that we're going to get shot at while we're doing it." But if they've got that much ammo on them, there's a reasonable expectation that they're going to protect you, and how special is that?

Also acceptable: thigh-high stockings, T-shirts, rollerskates, all neckwear except for bowties and ascots, lifejackets, pillbox hats, snakes. I'm glad we could have this talk.

And now the Ten:

1. The Who, "Who Are You"
2. Beck, "Dead Wild Cat"
3. Outkast, "Hey Ya!"
4. U2, "Lemon"
5. 3rd Bass, "Soul in the Hole"
6. The Sex Pistols, "God Save the Queen"
7. The Dust Brothers, "Space Monkeys"
8. Madonna, "Beautiful Stranger"
9. A Tribe Called Quest, "Can I Kick It?"
10. Lou Reed, "Walk on the Wild Side"

Your Random Tens, along with any suggestions you might have about proper naked accessorizin', are welcome in the comments.

Wednesday, August 4

Credit where credit is due.

So if the winner of the BCS National Championship Game gets to go to the White House and meet the president, isn't it only fair that Georgia, as the top party school in the country, should get to go to the Playboy Mansion and meet Hugh Hefner? I can't be the only one who wants to see Mark Richt present Hef with a Georgia jersey.

(Also, how awesome is it that this story got ink in the UK. Anything that brings Michael Adams closer to a padded room is fine by me.)