Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Kissing the 00s Goodbye

Dear McBoners,

McBone is shutting it down for the rest of the year, but don't worry; McBone has plenty of bloggin' to do in 2010. 

Happy new year!


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

On This Christmas

It's holiday time, and what would a trip back home to Akron be without a hamburger?  Check out this picture of me and a Sky Way cheeseburger with everything (pickles, mustard and onions).  Sky Way, like Swensons, has been peddling top notch burgers to hungry Akronites for decades.  When it comes to these drive ins, loyalties are divided.  Some swear by Swensons.  Others live and die with Sky Way.  At McBone, we prefer to think of them not as competitors but kindred souls, two relics of a better, bygone era of hot rods and poodle skirts and Hollywood witch hunts.  In those days, young men were gentlemen and, doggone it, you could trust your daughter to keep it in her pants.

Anyhow, when it comes to Sky Way and Swensons, I can't tell you which is better.  All I can tell you for sure is that, seconds after this photo was snapped, I ate the hell out of this delicious burger. 

Also, please take a moment to notice my Cleveland Cavaliers winter hat, signifying my loyalty to the Cleveland Cavaliers basketball team.


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Happy Holidays from Hell!

Straight out of hell, this giant Santa Claus is terrifying.

Fifty feet tall and itching to destroy a city, we knew we were taking a chance by getting this close.  The Jolly Old Elf, held captive within a body of molded plastic, is just waiting for a bolt of lightning to set him in motion and on a murdering Christmas rampage.  What reason could Santa possibly have to rampage?  Well, with war raging, progress stalling at Copenhagen and Joe Lieberman running amok, we've been very naughty, and all the milk and cookies in the world won't set things right.  Santa Claus is pissed, he's as big as a house, and there's gonna be a reckoning. 

Whatever you celebrate, McBone urges you to stock up on canned goods and avoid major metropolitan areas this holiday season.


Monday, December 21, 2009

The Case for Josh Cribbs

Last week I wrote about how Joshua Cribbs was the Browns MVP since their rebirth in 1999.  Hard to dispute that, and yesterday's stunning performance against the K.C. Chiefs merely drove home that point.  Cribbs returned one kickoff in the first quarter to become the NFL's all-time leader for kick return touchdowns.  Then, for good measure, he returned another in the second quarter to distance himself from the pack.  Considering he has done this in less than five pro seasons, we can safely say there has never been a player quite like Josh Cribbs.

Browns owner Randy Lerner has signed some very expensive contracts in the hope of building a good football team.  Josh Cribbs does not own one of those contracts.  The one sticking point in his time as a Brown has been the deal that will pay him about 1 million per year though 2012.  He's unhappy and he's been very vocal about it.  Normally professional athletes who bitch about the contracts they've signed get zero sympathy from me.  You're already overpaid, children are starving in the world, so shut up and play.  However, Cribbs, who has gone from undrafted free-agent to superstar, is a different matter.  For two seasons, he has been the only reason to watch the Browns.  Never once has his loyalty to the team been in question.  He loves his teammates and they love him.  He plays each down as if the fate of the free world hangs in the balance.  His four kick returns for touchdowns this season still match the total rushing touchdowns for the Browns as a team.  He is at once the most valuable and most undervalued player on the team.  Most importantly, he gives the poor suckers who shell out for tickets and concessions and parking and those unholy PSLs something to watch besides a weekly dose of mayonnaise-filled misery.

The life of a professional football player is very short.  One hit can end a career.  By 2012, Cribbs' legs may be shot.  He is setting records right now; he should be getting paid right now.  With all signs pointing to Mike Holmgren becoming football czar (or tsar, if you prefer), let's hope a new deal can be struck, one that pays Cribbs in proportion to what he brings to his team.


Oh, and we would be remiss if we did not reserve a few lines for Jerome Harrison, the seldom used running back who yesterday exploded for 286 yards rushing.  Yes, it was against the lowly Chiefs, but those yards simultaneously smash Jim Brown's 38-year-old team record and represent the third highest single game rushing total in NFL history! 

For all the futility the Browns have shown all season, we at least can pluck a few gems from the muck.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Sprucing Up the Old Place

Friends, if McBone is looking a bit different these days, don't adjust that dial!  Never ones to stand idle, we've done bit of remodeling, and we've got a brand new banner decorating the place.  Call it a new look for a new era, though perhaps you'll find it somewhat familiar as well.  You should!  It was designed by none other than the official cartoonist of McBone, and partner blogger, Kid Shay.  That's right, my buddy Josh accepted the challenging commission (the terms of which have yet to be hashed out in their entirety), and came up with a design that I think you'll agree is positively corking.

Always a talented artist, Josh has risen to greatness ever since selling his soul to the devil a couple of years ago.  Though he may regret that decision in the hereafter, we're glad he did it!  He's slapped a generous coating of his unique and ill-gotten ability right here, and we thank him for it.  Hey, hey, there's Stabbone and McGraw themselves, fully moustashioed and arrayed as they were before their mysterious disappearance in 1967.  Behold the skyline of the greatest city in the Midwest, Cleveland. Terminal Tower, Key Tower, the AT&T Building, Jacob's's all there in painstaking detail.  The historic Hope Memorial Bridge spans the foreground, linking downtown to the west side and the warehouse where Stabbone made his infamous last stand.

And there, like Godzilla walking among the skyscrapers, is Chan Marshall, watching over our little blog and making sure that everything in the McBoniverse reamains, as it has been since 2007, mayonnaise-free.  Don't cross her!  This gal breathes fire.

McBone is honored to have Josh's art gracing the top of our blog.  We couldn't be happier with it and we hope you like it too.  For those of you who hate change, don't worry.  We're still chock full of that good old-fashioned, extra chewy McBone wisdom.  Come get it while it's hot!


Monday, December 14, 2009

With Your Moustache, Evan, You Travel the Paths of Pain

This is my friend Evan, rocking a moustache that would have set the world on fire in 1976.  Evan would look perfectly at home in a Corvette Stingray, Pam Grier in the passenger's seat and a vial of cocaine in the glove compartment.  But this isn't the seventies.  Evan does not, to my knowledge, own a Corvette.  His evil wife doesn't approve of the moustache, and he well knows the perils of the coca plant in its refined, powder form.  Yes, the world has changed.  Moustache acceptance has steadily degenerated in the last 30 years.  No matter!  See how well it holds up in these days of moustache persecution?  Evan's moustache is real, and you can tell he didn't just trim this thing all willy-nilly.  This moustache makes a statement--full enough to show he is a man, untamed enough to say fuck you! to the the man.  Short of getting a neck tattoo or throwing your shoes at the president, I can't think of any better way to express that sentiment.

Very few guys can get away with a moustache anymore; even fewer have the guts to try.  Trust me, Evan hears the whispers, he sees the pointed fingers.  He's had to surrender his scoutmaster badge permanently.  He's been called a douchebag so many times he's lost count, and still he walks tall.  That's why it's a no brainer to give Evan's moustache the official McBone Seal of Approval: McB

McBone, the NOML, the NIML and all subsidiary groups are proud of you, Evan, for your bold decision to go against the grain, against your friends and family, and choose moustache.  You have taken the road less traveled by, and we salute you!


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Dear Recording Academy, Homophobia is NOT Okay

I'll admit that the guy to the left here is pretty cool looking, but trust you me, cool he is not.  He is an admitted homophobe who once spouted these words, "This is a fight, and as I said in one of my songs 'there is no end to the war between me and faggot' and it's clear."

Homosexuality is not amoral behavior; it is human behavior.  For as long as there have been humans, there has been homosexuality.  That will never change, nor is there any good reason why it should have to.  What needs to change is our general attitude toward LBGT lifestyles, that includes rejecting those who espouse a anti-gay sentiments.

Hey, Grammy Awards, with so many musicians out there, and so many of them advocating for peace, love and understanding, what could you possibly be thinking, nominating a known gay hater for one of your awards?  Does a guy who has sung about wanting gays to burn like tires and be shot in the head and have acid poured on them deserve to be rewarded?  Doesn't he belong more among the ranks of Nazis and others who think extermination and torture is a great outlet for fear and hate?

McBoners, I urge you to sign this petition telling the Recording Academy that honoring Buju Banton is not acceptable and will not be tolerated.  Afterward, watch some classic Michael Moore, who, with a pink bus and a bunch of gay guys, sticks it to Fred Phelps and his band of hatemongering degenerates from the Westboro Baptist Church:


Reason #95 to Love Cleveland Sports: Josh Cribbs

The Browns are 2-11 this season.  Even by the rock-bottom standards of Cleveland football, that's downright embarrassing. With two wins,  they're bad enough that low-lying owner Randy Lerner met with a pair of season ticket holders to discuss the state of things.  Hell, they're bad enough that Rolling Stone has noticed.  Hells bells, they're bad enough that they lost to the Detroit Lions.  The Lions!  Truly, there is little to be proud of in a season that was over almost as soon as it began.

One of the cool things about the NFL, though--if you win, you get a week to bask in it.  If it's a Thursday night game, you get nearly a week and a half.  I intend to savor the hell out of this one.

Thursday night's line reads like this: Browns 13, Steelers 6.  The win spared us all the ignominy of setting the team record for losses in a season.  Also, goddam it all, the gut wrenching 12 game losing streak to the Steelers is over.  The last Cleveland quarterback to beat the Steelers?  Tim Couch, who after 5 seasons of unrelenting punishment as a Cleveland QB had to retire with the body of a 97-year-old and a throwing shoulder that no amount of surgery could ever repair.  That 33-13 drubbing was back 2003.

Beating the Steelers in a season like this is NOT like winning the Super Bowl, as some would claim (as if I would know), but it is pretty damned sweet. If they don't win again this year, the Browns beat the Steelers!  As usual, the best player on the field wearing orange and brown was Josh Cribbs.

For five seasons, the undrafted Kent State graduate has been the best, and often only, reason to watch the Browns each week.  Even in that "good" 10-6 year, when Derek Anderson, Kellen Winslow, Braylon Edwards and Jamal Lewis were piling up stats and scoring in bunches, the most exciting moment in any given game was when the ball was kicked toward Josh Cribbs.

The same holds true today, and if you flip things around a bit, Cribbs has also been the best special teams tackler, hawking the opponent's return man as if he can't bear to be outdone.  He plays all out at all times.  He plays hurt.  He is as tough as any Brown I've ever seen and certainly the greatest Brown of the modern era.  He's never been much of a receiver, but more and more he's proving his value (pay the guy already!) running the ball in the offense.

But returns--that's where he's all world.  In the open field, he is perhaps the most dangerous runner in the NFL.  He finds seams, and if he sniffs a bit of breathing room, forget it.  In five seasons, he has scored more touchdowns on kick returns than any Brown in history.  This year, he has twice as many touchdowns on kick returns (2) as the Browns have rushing (1).   He has never been better than he was on Thursday, when it was cold enough to shatter teeth, when the Steelers HAD to win to keep their playoff hopes alive, when the Browns may as well have mailed it in.  Instead, Josh Cribbs had 200 all-purpose yards.  He was all over the place, running the ball out of the wildcat and making the Steelers pay for kicking to him with returns of 55 and 32 yards to set up scores.  For the fans who braved the conditions, they were treated to a great show.

So, here's to the Browns hiring a GM who can actually find some good players, and a coach* who can lead them.  Josh Cribbs deserves better than whatever the Browns record will be this year.  So do all the guys on this list:

The complete list of Browns players who are good
Josh Cribbs
Joe Thomas
Eric Steinbach
David Bowens
Shaun Rogers
Phil Dawson
Dave Zastudil
Ryan Pontbriand


*That the Browns are still hustling tells me that they haven't quit on "hated" coach Mangini.  I maintain that he will be back next season.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Nate Bowler vs. Carlo Rossi; It's a Stalemate!

In the end, after what had become an epic battle between one man and a giant jug of Carlo Rossi Burgundy, no one can lay claim to victory.  On the one hand, the jug is empty, every last drop of that wine-dark ocean, yea worthy to challenge Odysseus himself, having found its way to my belly, my bloodstream, my brain.  But you couldn't break me, Carlo!  Do you hear me, old man?  Your gallons couldn't break me!

On the other hand, I'm prostrate on the floor and possibly dead.  Just look at me, rolling around under the Christmas tree like some kind of a-hole.  If I had any kids, I'd be setting just a horrible example right now.  Wow, sure hope I don't barf!

I'm down, but don't count me out just yet.  I took one on the chin, but like Rocky in Rocky III (my favorite of all Rocky comebacks), I will rise up to drink again.  When that day comes, you, gentle McBoners, will be the first to know.


Photo by Alex

My Wife's Popularity...

is up 263% this week.

No, I'll never get sick of this.


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

McBone Certified Christmas Movies

I was a little grumpy last holiday season, McBoners.  Sorry about that.  I guess that poor guy getting trampled at Wal-Mart sort of set me off.  Happily, this year all is well with the world.  Without anything negative to blog about, it's about time to start popping the Christmas movies into the old DVD player, pull on that favorite sweater and throw a few logs on the fire.  Eggnog anyone?  

Unlike Christmas music, which basically turns my stomach with very, very, very few exceptions, I actually enjoy Christmas movies.  You have to be careful, though.  Getting stuck with the wrong Christmas movie can be a fatal mistake.

However, some Christmas movies I look forward to watching with my gal every year.  Here is a short list of McBone-certified Christmas flicks:

1. It's a Wonderful Life - The quintessential expression of Capra-corn and the ultimate Christmas movie, Alex and I have watched this one about 8 years in a row.  I love it more every time.  Who wouldn't love the sight of Jimmy Stewart alternately defending his town against that scoundrel Potter (second only to Darth Vader on my list of movie villains), inadvertently(?) removing the robe of a nubile Donna Reed, cussing out his four brats and tearing like a crazed lunatic through Bedford Falls shouting "Merry Christmas!" to every Tom, Dick and Harry (and Bert and Ernie) he happens upon?  No one I can think of.  Too many great moments to count.  Official McBone Rating: 5.0 McBones.

2. A Christmas Story - The desires of a child burn with the fire of a million suns, and few films capture that terrible, wonderful emotion so well as A Christmas Story.  I first saw this picture as a kid coveting a holy grail present of my own... I can really relate to Ralphie and his yen for a Red Rider BB gun with a compass in the stock and this thing that tells time.  Scott Farkus (Yellow eyes!  He had yellow eyes!  So help me god, yellow eyes!) once dined at the restaurant where I worked (his eyes were not yellow, disappointingly).  That it was filmed in Cleveland only seals its rating: 5.0 McBones.

3. Miracle on 34th St. - Edmund Gwenn is an acting genius, and casting him in the role of Santa Claus was an equal stroke of genius.  Maureen O'Hara's acting, on the other hand, is so exquisitely wooden, so amateurish, so bad, that it actually reaches the transcendent.  This movie has a near perfect balance of cloying sweetness and genuine hilarity, and you simply can't beat the trailer.  4.5 McBones.

4. Bad Santa - Billy Bob Thornton boozing, cussing and pissing himself as the ultimate Mall Santa/ thief/ sociopath who meets his match in a hopeless, doughy dope of kid.  The most vile and offensive of Christmas movies somehow has a heart, granted it is a diseased and rotten heart covered with flies and maggots.  4.0 McBones.

5. Scrooge - Ugh.  I can't believe this is on my list.  I hate musicals almost as much as I hate Christmas music, and some of the songs in this movie really make me sick, but with Albert Finney as Scrooge and my all-time favorite actor, Alec Guinness, as Jacob Marley, Scrooge has to be my no. 1 take on a too-oft-told story.  3.5 McBones.

6. The Grinch Who Stole Christmas.  The Dr. Seuss classic narrated by Boris Karloff!  These songs don't bother me partly because I could never hate a song about a triple-decker sauerkraut and toadstool sandwich, with arsenic sauce.  4.0 McBones.

7. Black Christmas.  An unseen killer whacks Margot Kidder and then terrorizes the most beautiful woman to ever grace a film, Olivia Hussey3.5 McBones.


Sunday, December 6, 2009

This Jug of Carlo Rossi Burgundy Just Won't Go Away!

Gentle McBoners, I write to you in a state of desperation, a man almost done in by pride.  You see, I've been working on a giant jug of Carlo Rossi Burgundy for a few weeks now, and no matter what I do, the stuff just won't go away.  Glass after glass I pour and quaff, to no avail!  Honestly, I think I've met my match.  Carlo, you are the better man.

I bought the giant jug of Carlo Rossi Burgundy because I had been watching some old commercials starring Charles 'Carlo' Rossi himself.  He's a man of many words and an even bigger thirst, and, perhaps caught up in Carlo's no-nonsense brand of joie de vivre, I was persuaded to slap 12 dollars down at the Kroger for a jug of my own. I admit to being a little put off at its boast of being '100% grape wine,' and its instructions to 'refrigerate after opening,' but mostly I was upbeat about the prospect of drinking, as Carlo put it, an 'honest wine for real people.'  It so happens that I am a real person, though the checkout guy must have had his doubts, because he asked for some ID to prove it.

I managed to get the ungainly jug home all right, but I knew I was going to need help once the cap was unscrewed.  Alex joined me initially, but after one glass she excused herself from any further obligation to the Carlo Rossi Project.  'You're on your own,' she declared and ventured into the cellar to retrieve a dusty 1961 Château Latour.

I thought I was up to the challenge.  You know me, McBoners; my love of alcoholic beverages is well documented.  But this humongous jug of Carlo Rossi Burgundy, this was a different sort of monster.  Still, I slipped on my drinkin' shoes, and, lo!, the die was cast: two men, one jug, and enough Burgundy to to make my liver want to run and hide.  The showdown would be epic, but I knew in my heart of hearts that I would prevail.

Over a month later, old Carlo Rossi, long dead, is having the first of the last laughs.  It's not that Carlo Rossi Burgundy, which is something like Nyquil mellowed with grape Kool-aid, is terrible, over even that bad.  It's just that there's so damned much of it!  Look at what's left after weeks of hard work (also note my Cleveland Cavaliers hat, indicating my loyalty to the Cleveland Cavaliers basketball team):

I swear I've poured a thousand glasses of this stuff, but it just keeps coming.  What's that?  Pour it down the drain, you say?  Bite your tongues!  Many billions of grapes gave their lives to make this ultracheap jug of wine, and I won't desecrate their memory.  I also will never buy a jug (or box!) of Carlo Rossi Burgundy again.  Or Carlo Rossi Chablis, Chianti, or Vin Rosé for that matter.

Still, a flicker of hope remains.  I'm not ready to back down quite yet.  You may be winning, Carlo, you old bastard, but you haven't broken me...yet.


Thursday, December 3, 2009

Reason #96 to Love Cleveland Sports: Zydrunas Ilgauskas

As a Cleveland Cavaliers fan, I love Zydrunas Ilgauskas.  You should too!  Here's why:

The Cavaliers drafted Kaunas, Lithuania native Zydrunas Ilguaskas in 1996, back when the team was a collection of well-coached, blue collar semi-stiffs that were just good enough to make the playoffs each year, yet bad enough to be eliminated in the first round every single time.  That was a pretty crappy formula, and the Cavs brass knew it.  Here they were, the leftover scraps from the salad days of Price, Daugherty, Nance, Hot Rod and Ehlo, playing in an widely unpopular, brand spanking new arena, going nowhere fast, and wearing the worst uniforms in the NBA.  Drafting the 7'3" center (along with the 6'11" Vitaly "Ukraine Train" Potopenko) was meant to give the Cavs an inside presence that would fill the void left by perennial all-star Brad Daugherty when a spinal injury cut Daugherty's career short.

Nobody knew much about Ilguaskas at the time, except that he was tall, gangly, pasty and, according to scouting reports, had all the "skills" to be an proficient NBA player.  In NBA Draft parlance, that translates roughly into the common tongue as "will probably never amount to anything."  Not that we'd get the chance to see how well we had spent the 20th pick, because however blessed he was with height and athleticism, Ilgauskas was cursed twofold with the feet of a 123-year-old with a calcium deficiency.  He had his first foot operation before he ever put on a Cavs uniform, and wouldn't be ready to play NBA basketball until the 1997-98 season.  That year he played all 82 games, averaging 14 points and 9 rebounds for a young playoff team and looked every bit the anchor a legitimate squad needs in the middle.  With his quickness and agility (oh yes, there was a time when he was quick and agile), a soft shooting touch and rebounding ability, there was no reason to think Z wouldn't be the Cavs starting center for the next dozen years.

Then the trouble with Z's crispy, crunchy feet really began, and with it came the demise of the once promising team.  Z would miss the better part of the next four seasons with foot injuries that required another four surgeries.  The last one had the big man mulling retirement at the ripe old age of 25, a year after he had signed a six-year contract that would pay him more money than I could possibly earn in 10,000 lifetimes.  Ilguaskas could easily have called it a career and spent the rest of his life living like a god.  No one would have blamed him, really, not after an endless cycle of injury, surgery, rehab, injury, etc.  Any professional athlete will tell you that the process of coming back from an operation is long and punishing.  Even when you are healthy enough to play, it takes weeks or months to regain your top form, if you ever do.  Big Z never did quite regain the speed and footwork that had him running up and down the court, even leading fast breaks, when he entered the league.  Growing up he had been a point guard, until a growth spurt turned him into a 7'3" guy.  The surgeon's blade then turned him into a earthbound plodder who was still good enough to start on a team that would go all the way to the NBA finals in 2007.  Ah, but Cavs fans and teammates will never really know what could have been.  Those four lost years and all those fractures really cost him, and us.

That's why Z's breaking the Cavaliers team record for games played tonight against Phoenix is so remarkable.  His last foot operation was a new and controversial procedure that involved a combination of tiny screws, krazy glue, spit, velcro and 1.21 gigawatts of electricity.  It worked so well that he became, astonishingly, one of the most durable players in the NBA.  Part man, part machine, Ilgauskas blossomed into a two-time all-star and one of the best centers of his era.

However, not all was well at Gund Arena.  The team he came back to had somehow metamorphosed into a laughingstock.  After that playoff season in '98, all-star forward Shawn Kemp traded fame and glory for fast food and cocaine. While Z rehabbed, Kemp was ballooning into an amorphous blob with all the athleticism of a tub of mayonnaise.  Cast off was one set of young players, replaced with fools gold like Ricky Davis and Darius Miles.  Through it all, Z played.  The horrific teambuilding strategy, orchestrated by the great Jim Paxson, culminated in a 17-win season in 2002-2003, just bad enough to earn the first pick in the 2003 draft, also known as LeBron James.

Along the road to that low point, Z was steadily earning the adoration of fans who appreciated a guy who always worked hard, played right and never once complained about Ricky Davis and Darius Miles chucking up shots that mostly missed.  Losses mounted.  Z played.  Fans stayed away.  Z played. He was rewarded by ending up on what has become one of the most formidable teams of the decade, and certainly the best in Cavs history.  This record is great, yes, but there's no beating the embrace that Z and LeBron shared when the final buzzer sounded in the 2007 Eastern Conference Finals, when the Cavs advanced to the NBA Finals for the first time ever.  This year, the Cavs have another legitimate chance at the title.  When they brought in an even older Shaquille O'Neal to replace Big Z as the starting center, Ilgauskas didn't bitch or whine.  He kept playing, as he has done, almost uninterrupted, for the past 9 years.

Z's career has been of particular interest to me because we're exactly the same age, and more than any other Cavs player, I have followed him.  Alex and I were in Cleveland, at Quicken Loans Arena, when he was slated to break the record.  Inexplicably, unforgivably, coach Mike Brown chose NOT TO PLAY HIM on what was to be his record breaking night, when his family was in attendance, when 20,000 fans were ready to stand up and cheer for a guy who for 14 years had gone through everything good and bad a professional athlete can go through, when Z himself declared a couple of days before that this was the record that meant the most to him, more than his team record for rebounds or blocked shots, when years of hard work and loyalty were about to pay off in the form of a landmark that no one, NO ONE, would have given him a chance to break ten years ago.  It was the first time in Z's career that he was available to play and was benched.  If ever there was a call for a WTF, this is it. Z was hurt bad by that mind-boggling benching.  He was right to be.  Thanks, coach Brown, for taking a piss on that particularly important moment.

So Z had to wait another few days to break the record--held by former teammate and good friend Danny Ferry--at home against the awful, awful (yes, I say awful) Phoenix Suns.  Not only did Big Z break the record, he did it in style.  His team-high 14 points off the bench (and in thumping victory over that crap team) bumped him into third place on the Cavs all-time scoring list, ahead of Austin Carr and behind LeBron James and Brad Daugherty.  That's damned good company to be in.  Here is a brief, emotional interview that basically sums up what Cleveland and the Cavs mean to him:

I look forward to seeing Ilguaskas' no. 11 raised to the rafters of Quicken Loans arena one day.  He will retire (hopefully not after this season) as the Cavs leader in games played, rebounds, blocked shots, and he will be second in points scored when he surpasses Daugherty sometime this year.  All that's missing is the ring.

In honor of Big Z's big accomplishment, McBone declares that December 2nd will henceforth be known as Zydrunas Ilgauskas Day.

McBone and Cleveland thank you, Big Z, for keeping Cleveland basketball afloat in the dark times and bringing us to the brink of a title.  As it turns out, you were the starting center for the next dozen years, and, with apologies to LeBron, I am glad to have been a Witness.


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Sorry, Whitey

Perhaps you've noticed that your friendly neighborhood bloggerman has been theming pretty hard in one direction lately. That's because I positively adore hamburgers, and I can't stop thinking about them.  In fact, I love hamburgers so much that I pledge my undying devotion to them, right here, right now, on this very blog.  If you could see me now, you'd see a guy who is down on one knee, because that's how really serious pledges are made.  Incidentally, I was not on one knee when I asked Alex to marry me.  I was in a hammock in Venezuela, which is even better.  But I'm not marrying hamburgers, for chrissake, I'm pledging my devotion to them, not in balmy Venezuela, but in frigid Indiana.  That's a different kind of commitment, though NOT one I make lightly.

Being from Akron, which is something of a Mecca when it comes to great burgers, I know the importance of having a reliably delicious burger joint nearby.  Here in West Lafayette, Indiana we have Triple XXX, where you can get a world-class hamburger.  Thank god, because the way I see it, any town where you can't get a good burger is no better than a cesspool.  A reeking, bubbling, gaseous, noxious, slime-filled cesspool.  No, none of these goddam disgusting places count:

Burger King
Any other similar, shitty establishment serving toxic, prefabricated deathburgers

It pains me that we did NOT go to Whitey's last week as planned.  We ended up slumming at the Cavs/Mavs game, watching the Cavaliers run the Mavericks out of the building.  Sure it was great fun to see a win, but there was a day when Whitey's Booze n' Burgers and Cavs basketball were virtually synonymous.

That's material I'll save for another day.