Thursday, April 25, 2013

Season Finale Mailbag Part 1!

I got carried away (are you surprised?). Splitting this thing in half - part 2 coming next week. Because of that, I'm still looking for a few more questions. Do your worst.

LET'S go!

Jake S:

I saw the trailer for Tyler Perry's Temptation. I kind of want to see it. Is it racist for me, a white Jewish dude, to ask a black dude or chick to go see this movie with me? If someone asked me to go eat a bagel, I'd be down. I think asking a Chinese person for Chinese food is a grey area. But, I do not know what the proper etiquette is for Tyler Perry movies.
"What do you dream about?"
"I don't really dream anymore. What do you dream about?"

Ignoring the racial aspects of this for a second, WHY DO YOU WANT TO SEE THIS MOVIE? I've watched the trailer, and here's my take on the plot:

Attractive black woman married her sweetheart and has not been railed by anyone else. She works as some sort of hybrid psychiatrist/millionaire matchmaker where she helps rich dudes find love. At some point, she realizes HEY WAIT MAYBE I DO NOT KNOW LOVE MYSELF. During this epiphanous (new word) time of her life, she notices a handsome black man running shirtless in the park. Isn't she shocked when he walks into her office, looking for love.

Defying all conventional movie troupes, he falls for her (CUE THE DREAMING). The next time they go running, she gets PULVERIZED by a speeding... nerd on a bicycle (don't worry, she's not dead). He takes her back to his bro-palace and tosses a t-bone (innuendo) on her ankle to nurse her back to health. As they're on the verge of passionate, adulterous bone-juicing, her disinterested husband shows up to take her home. THE MEN SIZE EACH OTHER UP VIA PRIMITIVE SEXUAL ANGST GLARES. 

Fast forward a month or so and she ends up on his private plane drinking champagne. This only happens because she puts her guard down after her lover of 16 years forgets her birthday for the second consecutive year (never mind that in the world we live in today - FACEBOOK - I never fail to wish a 'happy birthday' to the Russian line cooks from the camp I went to 5 years ago). The seed of love-doubt has been planted, and they share a sexy-as-fuck kiss with a Rihanna song playing in the background. 

Upon returning home, our protagonista is faced with a decision that will pave the future of her very life: rekindle the flame with dipshit back home, or ride off into the sunset with runner-boy.

This sounds absolutely terrible. But if you INSIST on seeing it, then no, it's not racist to ask a black person to go see it with you. I'm not entirely sure why you think you need a black person to go with you - I didn't feel the need to find a dinosaur to go with me to see Jurassic Park last week and I still enjoyed the hell out of that. Maybe it makes you more comfortable. I have no idea.

UPDATE: Remember those 'Ask a Black Dude' Chappelle's Show sketches? I asked a friend of mine at work WHO JUST SO HAPPENS TO BE BLACK. Turns out, she saw the movie the other day and really liked it. I mentioned your question and she was pretty confused. "It's not a movie about race, so why does it matter? Why's he need a black person to go with him?" Of course I asked her if there were white people in the theater, and she proceeded to count them on her fingers. There were 4, all part of interracial couples. INTERPRET AS YOU SEE FIT.


Chris H:

About a month ago it was announced that Wisconsin would open the 2015 season against Alabama at Cowboys stadium. Thoughts on this? I think in the past you have said you were against Wisconsin having a difficult non-conference schedule (could be wrong) and I know this is only one game, but has that changed?

That's my first thought.

Under the previous BCS nonsense regime, you had much more to lose than gain by playing a team like Alabama in your non-conference schedule. At the end of the day, being undefeated was much more important and valuable than having a loss against a very good team. But with the playoff system coming into the fold, I think you'll see a lot of schools start cranking up the difficulty of their non-conference schedule. Computers favored the wins, but a panel of humans would most likely prefer a team with an additional loss against a marquee opponent over a team that never challenged itself.

Barry Alvarez has been on record multiple times saying all B1G teams will be eliminating the cupcakes from their schedules, and it's nice to see Wisconsin out in front working to shore up that non-conference schedule. With teams like Alabama, BYU, and USF starting to show up more frequently than The Citadel and Texas A&M Corpus Christi, EVERYONE is better off. I like it and hope it continues. See y'all in Dallas.

Blair V:

Was this written by a fucking robot who failed English 101? Random capitalized letters, run-on sentences, misplaced modifiers... honestly, if you're gonna crap on the hearts of a UNIVERSITY OF HIGHER EDUCATION, can you at least outsource your 'fuck you' memo to an english major with 5 minutes of spare time? UGH


If we're just being real here, I'm kinda of at a loss over how I feel about Mifflin. My six Mifflins were some of the best days I've ever experienced - I got drunk with good friends, partied in the rain, ate an entire Papa John's pizza in someone's window, peed in a bomb shelter, and didn't get stabbed. What else could you ask for? But it's clear that the city is tired of having to police thousands of drunk idiots. The stabbings gained attention (rightfully so, fuck everything about getting stabbed). And now the city is hiding behind its crusade against THE PERILS OF ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION to shut down one of Madtown's biggest traditions.

From where I'm sitting, this is gonna lead to one hell of a situation when the students decide (and you know they will) they're going to do SOME kind of Mifflin. Maybe it's on Langdon. Maybe they decide to go 'power in numbers' and think 10,000 students can do whatever they want on Mifflin regardless of police intervention. But shit is gonna go down on May 4th. The UWPD can send all the fucktastically written memos they want, but a couple Facebook groups will raise an army of kids that have nothing else to get angry about. Seriously. They (for the most part) aren't knee deep in bills. They have no families to support. Something that seems as minor as a party to a normal adult is the MEGA SUPER BOWL OF LIFE to a UW student. They will not go gentle into the good night.

And that's why Madison/MPD's decision to "cancel" Mifflin is so stupid. Are there really no changes that could be made to the existing set-up? I'm pretty sure last year they decided to let kids drink on the streets, ending the charade that the pavement was any different than a yard during Mifflin. That was a step in the right direction I thought. But instead of continuing that kind of progressive thinking, their solution is just to shut it down? Not gonna fly, people. You just fired first in what is sure to be an interesting battle.

PS - Let's say Mifflin actually does 'die'. I won't lose any sleep. We've got our memories, and UW will be only marginally less awesome without one day of drinking. We'll survive.

PPS - No, I have no idea what Revelry is, but I'm assuming it's the school/city's attempt at distracting everyone by throwing some lameass party with shitty bands no one cares about. This won't work.

UPDATEHere's an update where the MPD 'clarifies' their stance, saying that safety is their only concern. Right. Because if someone steps foot on the street with a beer in their hands, THEY ARE A DANGER TO US ALL. Bullshit. They came out hot, realized it was gonna blow up in their faces, and are now backing down as they begin to understand that kids are gonna rage regardless of their memos.

Jeremy W:

Is Danny O'Brien still enrolled at Madison because he legit wants to get a degree and warm the bench next season? Also, do you think the jersey chasers still want to get with him or would it stain their reputation?

He's still enrolled because what else is he gonna do? Transfer again? I don't even know if that's legal. From what I've heard, he's kind of taken on that 'player-coach' role, similar to what Nate Tice did towards the end of his career. I'm sure it's a rough moment for someone who's gotten a taste of playing at a high level to realize that maybe they're just not quite good enough to play. No way that's fun. But you can either sulk about it and be miserable, or you can seize the opportunity to help out your teammates and maybe open up some doors for your future. Tice is off working at Pitt as a graduate assistant (I think), which is the first step in the coaching ladder. I'm sure DOB could do the same if that's what interested him.

The jersey chasers will keep on chasing because he's 6'3, on the football team, a quarterback, and doesn't look like the inside of a butt. I think if you're hunting for athletes at 2 am at the KK, you're not concerned with the guy's quarterback rating or completion percentage.

Danny G:

Is there any possible scenario where, if Michigan won the national title, you still could have went to bed w/ a smile on your face? If so, explain such a scenario.

The easy answer would be no, there does not exist such a scenario in which I would go to bed happy after watching those scumbags win the National Championship. But that is a BORING answer.

In my dream scenario, Russ Smith and Peyton Siva BOTH break their arms within the first 3 minutes of the game. This accomplishes two things:
  1. THE CURSE OF THE LOUISVILLE BROKEN BONES dominates headlines, immediately becoming more important than the result of the game itself. Darren Rovell tweets, "Broken bones; shattered dreams" and is instantaneously banned from twitter and exiled to Cambodia due to being a jackass. Trey Burke throws up on the court at the sight of double broken arms, is tagged as 'weak', and his draft stock plummets. He goes to the NBA anyway because news will drop the following day that he had not attended a class in months.
  2. "Wow, really impressive Michigan, you beat a team worried more about osteoporosis than hedging on ball screens. That must have been really hard. I wonder if you could beat my grandma one-on-one if she broke her hip in the middle of the game." Because if there's one thing the internet is good for, it's playing down someone else's achievements.
At this point, Michigan is cruising along. Then something crazy happens. That white walk-on boy from Louisville hits 14 threes in the second half, the last one coming with 58 seconds left to give Louisville a 1 point lead. At this point, the CBS feed goes BLACK. CHAOS. CBS is unable to recover their feed in time for the end of the game, which proves to be historic as Louisville accidentally tips a ball into their own hoop at the buzzer to gift a victory to Michigan. On the surface, Michigan fans act ecstatic: "NATIONAL CHAMPSSSS YESSSS WE ARE SO AWESOME". But on the inside, they know it was all a SHAM. Academic fraud, multiple injuries, and an own-basket paved the way to their victory. Deep down, they know it's all a facade. Nothing more than a mirage. Sure, they can celebrate for the night, but they'll wake up to a shitstorm of depression the next day.

MEANWHILE, HBO shocks the world by playing the 4th episode of season 3 of Game of Thrones immediately after the title game, even though the second episode was released the night before. A genius move considering a) it was fucking amazing, and b) Michigan fans are probably too drunk on Grey Goose (I bet Michiganders LOVE Grey Goose) to watch. You with me still? Good. Because at this point I no longer care about Michigan. I wanna talk about Game of Thrones.

THERE ARE SPOILERS COMING IF YOU HAVE NOT WATCHED THE SHOW THROUGH THE MOST CURRENT EPISODE. This is your warning. Go away now if you haven't watched but intend to do so sometime soon.


Alright. Got that all out of the way. Here are the thoughts I'm kinda feeling right now:
  • Melisandre told Stannis that she needs to make a sacrifice, and she needs the blood of the one true king. Stannis points out that he is the one true king, but she's quick to note that there are others with his blood. Let's think about this: Stannis has no children. All of his family is dead (Robert and Renly). So that only leaves their children, and we know Joffrey is the fucking reason you don't incest. Who remains? GENDRY, Robert's bastard. And where's Gendry? Oh, no big deal, with Arya and the Brotherhood without Banners... who enlist Thoros of Myr - a priest for the Lord of Light. THEORY: Melisandre will cross paths with Gendry and Arya, and she will try to take him/them with to sacrifice. BUT ARYA AIN'T HAVING NONE OF THAT.
  • Let's recap Dany's life: Everyone in her family was killed except for her fuckstick brother, who is keen on selling her off to get raped a million times over if it gets him an army. She gets mounted by Drogo. Eats a horse heart (SANS RANCH). Watches Drogo murder her last remaining relative with molten gold. Becomes a Khaleesi. Hatches dragons. Wastes away in the desert for months. Ends up in Qarth, where a good for nothin' SWINDLER tries to marry her and some Warlocks steal her dragons. Terrible idea; Warlock gets roasted. Dany takes a ship to Astapor to acquire a slave army. And then it all pays off as she scorches the city and leaves with 8,000 terrifying soldiers and 3 kickass dragons. I AM ON BOARD.
  • The scene with Varys and his sorcerer was genuinely frightening. He keeps talking about how he only serves the realm, which makes you feel kinda good about him. And then he tells you the story of how his frank and beans got chopped and how patiently he waited for revenge, and you realize he's almost as scary as the rest of them. I also could not tell if that sorcerer had his jaw sewn shut. If so, +10 bonus points for deserved cruelty.
  • Tywin Lannister is such a BOSS. I love how he's always multitasking. Ripping his son to pieces while skinning a deer. Putting Cersei in her place as he writes a thousand letters. Even when he was talking with Arya in season 2, he always had something going on. The man is in control - at least for now. More than a little excited to see him try to stop Joffrey from doing what he wants.
  • Speaking of the king, I am cautiously loving what the Tyrells have brought to the table. They're obviously quite cunning and calculating, but you can't really be sure what their motivations are. Plus, they threw us a new wrinkle with this 'Sansa marrying Loras' idea. I don't think that'll actually happen, but the ramifications are interesting. I'll assume their thinking is that Robb will lose, there will be no Starks left, and Sansa will be the heir to Winterfell (and their bannermen). Pretty powerful piece to have.
  • If you asked me what my favorite part of the show was, I think I'd say how we can definitely identify the bad guys (Joffrey, Littlefinger, every Greyjoy), but it's impossible to truly find the good guys. Every one of them has done at least one terrible or stupid thing that makes you question their motives. Jamie opened the show by tossing Bran out of a window, but he also defeated the Mad King and refused to kill Ned when he was injured. Jon abandoned the Night's Watch and is poised to lead an attack on Castle Black, but he could still be some kind of weird double agent. Robb is fighting to avenge his father's death, but he broke a huge vow by marrying Talisa. The list goes on and on. This ability to paint characters not in black and white, but in shades of grey makes Martin every bit the genius he is.

OK, I'm gonna stop there. I could do this for DAYS. If you're a non-book reader and want to keep going, you know how to contact me. Best show ever.

Peter M:

Where did you get the idea for "Badger Preview"? Did you draw inspiration from Drew Magary of Deadspin?  I've noticed A LOT of similarities between his writing and yours. Thoughts?

In February 2010, I randomly started writing LOST recaps for each episode of the final season. They gave me a platform to toss out my asinine theories and a nice way to kill some time during the slow periods at work. But LOST was done by May, and I had that void to fill. To be honest, I don't remember what my exact thinking was, but I floated the idea out to a couple close friends and decided to roll with it. I look back at the first previews and laugh at how terrible they were. Since then it's just been a bunch of tinkering to find what works and what doesn't work.

As for your second question, I am a HUGE Magary fan. I've been reading him for a while, bought his book, went to the Chicago stop on his book tour... the whole deal. So I guess you can include him as an inspiration of mine. I mean, the guy's a fantastic writer, going from poop jokes to GQ profiles without skipping a beat.

But at the same time, he's not the first person to use caps lock in his writing. He didn't invent the mailbag concept. So yeah, I definitely draw some inspiration from him, but at the end of the day you've gotta do your own thing.

Drew P:

If you could be any of the characters from Lost, which one would you choose and why?

It's tough because every single character on that show was messed up. Hurley wins the lottery... and then everyone around him starts dying. Jack is a genius spinal surgeon and saves the life of the woman he marries... only to have her leave him for someone else. Sawyer saw his dad kill his mom and then commit suicide basically sitting on top of him. Jin had to become a hit-man just to marry Sun. Locke got conned for a kidney AND paralyzed... by his own father. THEY ALL HAD DADDY ISSUES. It's crazy.

  • Walt. Only because I'd fucking love to know what was so special about him. How'd he kill that bird? WAS HE A WARG?* Why did the Others want him so badly? I feel like if I were Walt, I'd understand all of these things. At the same time, puberty's a bitch, and I'm not sure I wanna go through that again.
  • Frank. He could fix a 747 with duct tape. He was ruggedly handsome. I would be perfectly comfortable with the amount of chest hair he had. He strikes me as the kind of guy everyone loves having a drink with. Frank really had a lot of things going for him.
  • Bernard. He's a caring man who would do anything for the woman he loves. When everyone else was going nuts trying to find a way off the Island, Bernard was just setting up shop and loving his life with Rose. Probably the only person (along with his wife) to truly live out a 'happily ever after'. BONUS: Rose would be my safeguard if the Island ever decided to show Tyler Perry's Temptation. Can't just be all white and not-black to go see that movie.

Very capable candidates, each with good stories and lives worth living. You'll notice I'm avoiding the Jack/Sawyer/Sayid/Ben/Locke main character group. They've seen and done too many fucked up things for my tastes. And that's why I'm going with Desmond.

I love Desmond. He was easily one of my top 2-3 favorite characters from LOST, and after spending the last two hours on Lostpedia, that has not changed.

  • Scottish accent, instant panty-dropper.
  • Doesn't matter though, because Penny is a dimepiece.
  • He could see the future, and used that ability to save Charlie's life like a thousand times.
  • I'd say Desmond was rather charismatic.
  • Desmond was the key to ending the Man in Black. Big time sacrifice, ultimate redemption.
  • Dez was the one calling the shots in the 'afterlife', getting everyone together so they could move on. Again, looking out for the group.
  • I can't imagine those brushes with electromagnetism were good for his health.
  • Penny's dad was a HUGE dick.
  • In fact, Penny's dad was such a dick that Desmond convinced himself that the only way to earn his trust was to win his sailboat race around the world. Being on a shitty boat for years sounds kinda terrible to me.
  • AND that shitty boat led him to the Island, where he had to push the button for 3 years. HOWEVER, I don't think the time in the hatch was as bad as you'd think. There were books, music, showers, food, faux natural sunlight... plenty of things to make the time go by.
  • He kinda killed a guy, but who hasn't?

This reasoning works for me. He got the girl he wanted, had a son, saved the universe, and led all the people he cared about to the afterlife. Also, I bet he enjoys Braveheart more than I do given his Scottish heritage. Win/win.

*A Game of Thrones reference within a LOST reference? LOOK OUT.

Tim S:

I was reading yesterday about this proposal done from one lesbian to another.  In gay couples how is it decided who pops the question?  The easy answer is the "man" in the relationship steps up, but in most hetero relationships the woman really runs the show. Is it negotiated early on?  Is it similar to how 2 people decide on what restaurant to go to?  Someone just has to "step up" first?

Damn, that's actually an interesting social scenario. I feel like they have to talk about it beforehand. How insane would it be if each person in the relationship bought a ring in secrecy and had grand proposal plans? Like, let's say Claudia and Daisy in our hypothetical lesbian relationship each decide on their own that they want to pop the question. Claudia buys a huge rock and makes reservations for dinner and drinks up on top of the Hancock (ironic?) in the Signature Room. Daisy also buys a giant ring and sets up a romantic excursion in a hot air balloon over central Illinois (zoning regulations yo, you can't just hot air balloon over the city). If they go to the Signature Room the week before Daisy's hot air balloon proposal and Claudia pops the question, Daisy's gonna be pissed, right? I know lesbian-Brandon would be SO disappointed that he (she?) got beat to the punch.

Because of that, I'm guessing there are some big time conversations resulting in some kind of mutual proposal. I also would like to know if they each get giant diamond engagement rings. Do gay men just get the standard wedding band thing? Or do they go for broke and get diamond rings as well? QUESTIONS BREEDING QUESTIONS.

Out of curiosity, I googled 'lesbian wedding proposal'. Holy shit, this is incredible:

I legit got goosebumps watching it and I do not care what that says about me. I'm still kinda confused about what they told the proposee to get her to go sit there and watch that performance, but either way, that's an A+ proposal regardless of sexual orientation. THE CHOREOGRAPHY... THE EDITING TECHNIQUES.

PS - Whoa hey talk about out-cunt-punting your coverage:

Part 2 coming next week. Don't forget to send in any last-second questions you may have. Looks like we're finally getting some sun, so enjoy your weekend!


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