Thursday, October 24, 2013

Bye Week Mailbag #2!

Your questions, my answers. This got long. You've been warned. Let's do this thing.


Jeff W:

What are your top 5 favorite .gifs on the internet? I would assume this is one of them:



While I love me some Chris Farley, I think my top 5 looks a little something like this:

1) Raptors Mascot

The derpy face. The tiny little raptor feet struggling in roller blades. The depressed tail deflating at the end. GIF PERFECTION.

2) Oprah Bees

EASILY the best part is when she puts her hand up and bobs her head up and down while dancing to her right. God that kills me. I don't even remember if that part's from the real video or not. I don't care.

3) Cookie Monster

There's a scene in Knocked Up where Seth Rogan and Paul Rudd are talking about how much Rudd's kids love bubbles, and Rudd says that he'll never love ANYTHING as much as they love bubbles. That's how I feel when I see Cookie Monster here. I know that there's no way I'll ever love anything nearly as much as he loves a giant cookie cake surrounded by perimeter cookies. Mouth agape. Eyes GOOGLY. And look how happy all his friends are for him!

4) Thug City


Just... did not see that coming. If they were on roller blades, we wouldn't even be having this conversation. The skates put me over the edge.

5) The Watermelon Face Crushing Smile


In all honesty, I'm not 100% sure these two were related. I've always assumed those reactions were from the girl destroying her face with a watermelon. So I went ahead and stitched them together with some INTERNET MAGIC. Works for me.

Honorable Mention: Please Just Watch Her Face

Wally Q:

I had a dream the other night that I was fired from my job. A night later I had a dream that the Badgers won the national title. If you had to choose between both of these dreams coming true or both not happening what would you choose? Personally, I hate my job, and while I need it to survive and live the lifestyle I have become accustomed to, I'd happily be fired for a national title. I'm fully prepared to start living off unemployment for a Badger title. 

If you're asking me if I'd lose my job to guarantee a national championship, then I think you and everyone else who knows me could tell you the answer to that question. We may not see a national title in our lives - but you WILL find another job. Or you'll just be a bum! I'd keep all the newspapers that covered Wisconsin's championship and make my bum-bed out of them. My begging cup would be a Will's stadium cup. My poor-sign would say, 'HELP. NEED FOOD. #NATIONALCHAMPS #ONWISCONSIN'. I'd go to the Jackson Red Line stop and do a 'Varsity' duet with the weird Chinese person that plays the mysterious bow-instrument while the hula hoop girl dances.

This would all be worth it for a title. The minuscule chance of being the most Wisco homeless guy in Chicago is not enough of a threat to prevent me from quitting my job tomorrow if it guaranteed a Wisconsin national championship. BUT, that title has to come within a 3 year timeframe. Bullshit if I have to be the awesome Wisco homeless guy in Chicago for 30 years BEFORE that title cashes.

PS - This person requested that I change their name, and Wally was their suggestion. I've always thought that when you're changing names or writing a story, coming up with names was the hardest part. Steve Johnson? Joe Smith? TOO GENERIC. Claude Willhelmson? TOO FAKE.

PPS - I've been spending the last 2+ years trying to come up with my go-to alias. You know, my Art Vandelay. My Martin van Nostrom. My H.E. Pennypacker. Can't force these things. They gotta come from WITHIN.

Jon K:

Do you think Bielema is enjoying his time in the SEC?

Is now a good time to point out that since Jen Bielema's #karmageddon tweet, Arkansas is 0-5 and has been outscored 207-74? Could there be any sweeter justice in the world? OH YES THERE COULD BE:

Jeremy W:

What was a better Bielema moment? That picture of his fatass without a shirt on from a few years ago? Or the video of his fatass falling over on the Hog Walk a few weeks ago like a bullet had just shot him in the back?

That never gets old. Reminds me of this, which is a video that everyone should watch at least once per month - paying special attention to the laughing in the background.

I refuse to post the pic of Bielema's gut because I've still never seen any back-story on that and I'm not entirely sure if it's real. Also, No thanks.

PS - Bielema has to be the only coach who wears headphones when entering the stadium. Not exactly sure what that says about him, but I'm pretty sure that says EVERYTHING about him.

Danny P:

Do you find yourself using workplace phrases/jargon you would have hated someone for a few years ago?  Is it time to embrace things like "circle up" "touch base" "run the traps"?  I've been circling up on a lot lately and don't get me started about the cost/benefit analysis.  

No. Never embrace them. If you ever catch me saying 'six of one, half-dozen of the other', 'GIGO (garbage in, garbage out)', or 'I must have fat-fingered it', I give you permission to immediately punch me in the ear.  I hate those phrases so much, but I hear them often enough to worry that they might seep into my sexy brain's subconscious.

Like, if I'm ever talking to friends and we're trying to pick a spot for dinner, and THIS conversation happens?

Friend 1: Let's go to Qdoba!
Friend 2: Nah man, had a burrito yesterday. Let's get Potbelly!
Friend 1: Potbelly BLOWS! They don't even make normal chocolate chip cookies. FUCK OATMEAL. Brandon, what do you think?
Brandon: Eh, IDK. Six of one, half-dozen of the other.


When it comes to mixing your personal life with your work life, you have to apply the World's Theory. Once Independent Brandon and Work Brandon collide... BOOM.

PS - That's honestly one of Seinfeld's best bits right there. George talking in the third person, Independent George, Movie George, Coffee Shop George, Liar George, BAWDY GEORGE.

Matthew B:

Power rankings of championships you want to see your teams win?

Something I've thought about probably a million times:

1) Wisconsin Basketball. This will change if it doesn't happen before Bo Ryan retires, because one of the main reasons I have this at #1 is that I want Bo to win a national championship and rub it in the face of everyone that's hated on him. 'Oh, he can't win with the talent he has.' 'Oh, that style of play will never beat the Kentucky's and UNC's of the world.' 'Oh, he'll just lose in the second round every year.'

If you want to identify the moron in your sports conversation, just bring up UW hoops and look for the person that spouts off any of that trash. ANY kind of one-and-done tournament is inherently very luck-driven. All it takes is one off-night from your squad, or conversely one holy-shit-Cornell-can't-miss night from an opponent to send you home crying. Obviously, it's not ALL luck: the more talented your players, the better shot they have of overcoming bad luck on sheer talent alone. But like any postseason tournament, you need to get there to give yourself a chance. And that's one thing Bo Ryan does every single year.

So, take my sincere hope of silencing Bo's haters, combine that with the multi-week, win-or-go-home format, and I feel safe in saying that this would be the most glorious championship I could witness.

2) Wisconsin Football. I love the momentum that builds in an undefeated season. Surviving the early non-conference test. Shutting down a rival in week 5 in a game that SHOULD'VE been during week 10. Getting healthy on the bye week and watching as at least ONE team ahead of you stumbles. All of the sudden, everyone's talking about your team and how they have a decent chance to run the table.

Previously, you needed more than just an undefeated season: you needed to hit that top-2 in the BCS rankings. But with the 4-team playoff coming next year, that fear of running the table and being left out all but disappears. And that's when you can start entertaining the thought of Joel Stave hoisting that crystal football, Madison burning to the ground in pure elation, and checking the polls the next day to see #1 Wisconsin Badgers. National champions. FUCK I WANT THIS NOW.

3) Green Bay Packers. I've seen two Packers Super Bowl winners in my lifetime. They were AWESOME. Not only are the Packers ingrained in the soul of every person that grew up in Wisconsin, but the Super Bowl is the game of the year. People in Ghana who don't have running water somehow find a way to watch the Super Bowl. Seeing your team circle the field with the Lombardi Trophy is something special that not everyone gets to experience. Like Bears or Vikings fans! MCCOWN VS. FREEMAN. WEEK 13. HOLD ON TO YOUR BUTTS.

4) Chicago Bulls. DISCLAIMER: I'm a bit of a hybrid fan. Born in Chicago, grew up in Wisconsin, the son of parents who didn't really care about sports... until MJ and the Bulls shit all over the NBA in the 90s. Which, oddly enough, is why they're this low on my list: I've seen the Bulls as good as any team can be. I almost got used to watching the Bulls win titles. Whenever I'm bored, I can pop in my Bulls NBA Dynasty Series DVDs (hey ladies, literally the perfect gift for the man in your life, or the girl in your life who loves the Bulls because #notsexist) and watch Jordan drill 6 threes on the Blazers in game 1 of the '92 Finals (favorite Bulls team, for sure).

Not to take away from the current Bulls - DRose gives me questionable boners on the reg, and I love being in the select group of people on this planet that can enjoy Noah's shenanigans. I love the Bulls. But due to previous success, I don't think a Bulls championship would register as violently on my Championship Richter Scale as the previous three would. And I say that having endured the Marcus Fizer/Tyson Chandler/Eddy Curry/Jamal Crawford/Kirk Hinrich years.

5) Chicago Blackhawks. My parents' first date was a Hawks game. I remember watching Eric Daze skate around on TV when we visited family in Chicago. The first (and only) time I ever left a baseball game with a ball was at County Stadium in Milwaukee, when an usher gave me a BP ball because I had a Blackhawks jersey on. I love the Hawks. But it's very, very hard to ignore the long period of time when not only was the team pretty bad, but the ownership was batshit insane. If you asked me how best to alienate your fan base, the first thing I'd say is to stop televising games. And that's exactly what they did.

So after years of indifference, it's AWESOME watching the Toews/Kaner teams dominate up and down the ice. Beyond fun celebrating a couple Stanley Cup winners. But the dead period still factors in.

And now you non-Chicagoans can resume calling the entire city a bunch of bandwagoners. If you haven't noticed, we have a lot of fun rooting for this team. You won't stop that.

NOT RATED DUE TO IMPOSSIBILITY: Chicago Cubs. This will literally never happen. It's not possible given the current physical makeup of the universe we inhabit. The meanest thing I've ever done in my life was getting my little brother hooked on the Cubs. He's so naively optimistic on them year after year, and I don't know how to tell him that the worst thing any person can do in their life is get their hopes up on the Cubs. #COMMITTED

Tim S:

Have you heard any college band plays Rains of Castamere yet to a team that they are about to beat?  How awesome would that be?

I think it would work better if somehow the team coordinated with the band and played it before a particularly OMINOUS play. Like a few years ago when we were playing at Iowa - it woulda been awesome if Bielema signaled to Leckrone and Leckrone had the band drum up the Rains of Castamere RIGHT before we ran that fake punt. I imagine Ferentz slowly realizing what was about to happen and going to call a timeout just as we snapped the ball, and then watching as the wheels fell off.

Since we're on the topic of the band, let me say this: I think our band is pretty overrated. If I were band director for one day (TERRIFYING), the first thing I'd change is how we handle 3rd downs. If you ever watch an SEC game or any game featuring good football programs, their bands ALWAYS have a badass 3rd down anthem/song. Maybe it's the Imperial March from Star Wars. Maybe it's some original, booming, intimidating brass number. Whatever it is, it's DEFINITELY a lot better than piped-in 'Crazy Train' or some AC/DC garbage. So when I'm running the show, the first thing I'm doing is installing a pre-big-3rd down tune that fires up the crowd and makes the other team want to go home.

Once that's taken care of, I'm fixing the halftime show. Our band? Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat WHATEVER THE FUCK THAT IS. OSU's band?

We're doing showtunes and stuff even my parents won't listen to. They're doing Michael Freaking Jackson moonwalking across the field. Us? Hidden gems from the big band swing daisy dip boom of 1952. Them?

I'm not gonna call for Leckrone to get fired because that's like trying to raze a building listed with the National Register of Historical Places. But Jesus Christ man, do something relevant to this decade. When I was at the Northwestern game, I didn't hesitate for one second to go grab some nachos (SOLID) during halftime. It would be a different story if our band did a Miley Cyrus medley while forming a giant wrecking ball swinging back and forth on the field. I would not miss that. I'd even Instagram video it, and NOBODY Instagram videos.

PS - I'm still on #TeamVine. Someone said the other day, 'Vine's still a thing?!' HELL YES IT IS. The Vine app is growing at a faster rate in 2013 than any other app. That's crazy.

Danny G:

Would you let your kid play football? Why or why not?

FUCK AND NO. No one hates the PC, 'get dodgeball out of our schools! THINK OF THE CHILDREN' movement more than I do, but I don't know how any parent can feel comfortable sending their kid out to play football. And forget what you read about NFL players - your middle school and high school teams are not going to have top-shelf medical treatments at their disposals. It's a stupidly violent sport that I love watching, but would be constantly worried if my son (or daughter WHAT UP ICEBOX) was out there with Brandon Meriweather Jr. headhunting in Pop Warner games.

I didn't watch the PBS thing on concussions yet, but I can safely guess that we're just seeing the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the long-term neurological effects of playing football. And I'm also not taking much of a leap in assuming that the damage doesn't start in the NFL, or even in college football. That stuff builds from the first time you put on a helmet.

Plus, let's get fucking realistic for a second and realize that I'm not really holding the right gene cards to pump out NFL-caliber babies. Sorry kiddo, go kick a soccer ball around.

David W:

1)  How lucky should we feel that we missed, for the most part, the cell-phone camera revolution in college?  I believe the first iPhone came out in 2007 as we were going into senior year.  Though hand-held cameras were everywhere in college, they were really ONLY at large prebars, parties, socials, or formals.  I cannot imagine what it would have been like to have documented all the dumb shit that we did in college and have pictures out there ready to haunt you at any moment. Please comment about what it would have been like for us and how everyone younger than us is fucked.

It's a very good point. We were the first wave of college students to really have Facebook throughout our college experience, and I thought the pictures that made their way onto Facebook during college were terrifying. But virtually every picture of me on Facebook from my college years was taken with a point and shoot digital camera. Like Davey said, those came out in full force for bigger events, but if something funny/crazy/awesome happened in the time between those events, it went undocumented.

And that's (for the most part) a good thing. Lord knows we don't need more pictures of ourselves passed out, throwing up, doing drugs, or whatever else it was that you were into in college. Yeah, it'd be fun to go back and look at those pics and videos, but in the long run they're just gonna come back and bite you. Speaking of which:

2) Related to the above question.  If one has in his or her possession certain compromising photos of friends from back in the day, maybe its doing drugs, maybe it's people passed out naked in the tub with the shower curtain pulled off the bar, maybe it's a half naked person with an entire cake shoved in their face and all over them.  If one had such photos, when is the appropriate time to display them and to who?  Is it at a wedding? Is it when they run for public office? Should it only be shown to close friends or put out there for all to see?

I'm gonna go ahead and say don't show those things off at weddings. Bachelor/Bachelorette parties? Why not. But at WEDDINGS? Hell no. Weddings aren't just giant parties with your friends - they're swimming with old people that want nothing to do with a picture of you with a bong up your butt, or children that good god why would you ever show them the terrible things you did in college.

So save those pictures and videos. Save them for bachelor parties to remind your friends of how fucking stupid they were. Save them for email chains when you're feeling defensive about being called out for something and want to change the subject so everyone gangs up on someone else. Perhaps make a unique birthday card with a picture of your friend eating his own vomit out of a toilet.* ENDLESS POSSIBILITIES.

*So, so gross. YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE.

Marty N:

According to Wikipedia the longest field goal in the modern kicking era is by the once great Martin Gramatica (the one that didn't tear his ACL celebrating a made field goal):

FBS: 65 - Martin Gramatica, Kansas State vs. Northern Illinois, Sept. 12, 1998. Longest without a kicking tee which was banned in 1989.
What are the odds on Borland eclipsing this record?

Well, now that Borland has a hamstring issue, I think the odds of him kicking have decreased dramatically. SO SAD. But when news broke that he was in line to kick, it got me thinking about other situations in sports when athletes have to play a different position:

Position player pitching in baseball. LOVE this. 19th inning of a game, bullpen is completely used up, so what do you do? Bring in your back-up second basemen to pitch:

Non-quarterback throwing the ball. I'd like to say that I never root for injuries, but that's not true. The ONE scenario where I root for injury is after a quarterback gets hurt during a game, and the team only has one back-up. I am immediately praying that the back-up breaks a rib (nothing too serious, but can't return) and is out of the game. BRING IN THE EMERGENCY QUARTERBACK. I'm sure Josh McCown is a nice guy and all, but once he took over for Cutler on Sunday all I could think about was him spraining an ankle and Earl Bennett coming in to finish the game at QB. I'd keep that on my DVR FOREVER.

Hockey goalies scoring. I know this isn't them really playing a different position, but every time the puck gets near a goalie when the opposite net is empty, I'm BEGGING him to toss a shot up. What's the only thing cooler than a goalie scoring? A goalie BUZZER BEATER:

The Schwarz Family:

In Dante's Inferno, hell is depicted as 9 circles of suffering (the 9 circles of hell) as follows: limbo, lust, gluttony, greed, anger, heresy, violence, fraud, treachery. Please tell us to which circle of hell each of following is destined and why:

  • Tom Crean
  • Tom Izzo
  • Mr. & Mrs. Bielema
  • Ohio State University
  • The state of Michigan
  • A world without ranch dressing
  • Michael Mauti
  • Attending the University of Minnesota
  • Jerry Sandusky

I picture this family sitting around a fire, drinking hot chocolate, listing out the things that I hate more than anything else in the world. GOOD JOB.

Limbo: Michael Mauti

In Limbo reside the virtuous pagans, who, though not sinful, did not accept Christ. Thus the guiltless damned are punished by living in a deficient form of Heaven.

Because I do not blame Mauti for ESPN's obnoxious coverage. I do not blame Mauti for people in State College getting '42' tattooed on their faces. I do not blame Mauti for his injury or for his team dedicating their first-born children to him.

None of this was Mauti's fault. He was not a sinner. But fuck him and Penn State.

Lust: Jerry Sandusky

In the second circle of Hell are those overcome by lust. Dante condemns these "carnal malefactors" for letting their appetites sway their reason. They are the first ones to be truly punished in Hell.

I wish there was a 10th circle of Hell for the monsters whose appetites sway them towards children. GET ON THAT, DANTE.

Gluttony: The Bielemas

The surrender to sin which began with mutual indulgence leads by an imperceptible degradation to solitary self-indulgence. In this circle, Dante converses with a Florentine contemporary identified as Ciacco, which means "hog."

I lied.

PS - 100% didn't make up that 'hog' thing.

Greed: Tom Izzo

Those whose attitude toward material goods deviated from the appropriate mean are punished in the fourth circle. 

I actually respect Izzo because he's a damn good coach and not nearly as much of a greaseball as the Caliparis and Creans of the world. I also had no other place to put him, so here's him dressed like some kind of Spartan from 300:


Anger: The State of Michigan

In the swamp-like water of the river Styx, the wrathful fight each other on the surface, and the sullen lie gurgling beneath the water, withdrawn "into a black sulkiness which can find no joy in God or man or the universe."

'A black sulkiness which can find no joy in god or man or the universe'

So, this?

Heresy: Tom Crean

In the sixth circle, Heretics, such as Epicureans (who say "the soul dies with the body") are trapped in flaming tombs.

The sixth circle of Hell is reserved for the soulless heretics of middle-earth:

Violence: A World Without Ranch Dressing

The seventh circle houses the violent. Its entry is guarded by the Minotaur.

This is where I would end up if I had to live my mortal life without ranch. I'd be a heat-seeking missile of anger and violence unlike anything the world has ever seen.

PS - If I fought a Minotaur in the octagon, I think I could take him. Life or death battle, no way am I going out against some stupid half-monster. I'd rather fight a Minotaur than a moose or a hippo, no question.

Fraud: Ohio State

The last two circles of Hell punish sins that involve conscious fraud or treachery. The fraudulent – those guilty of deliberate, knowing evil – are located in a circle named Malebolge ("Evil Pockets").

Excuse me while I edit the Columbus Wikipedia page to recognize its official nickname as THE EVIL POCKET.

Treachery: Attending the University of Minnesota

The traitors are distinguished from the "merely" fraudulent in that their acts involve betraying a special relationship of some kind.


Sam R:

So this was a question proposed in Cosmopolitan (the magazine) by some chick that wrote in.  I think it is disgusting and quite honestly ridiculous, but also appropriate.  It's a two parter and sort of long, but my roommates (the people who shared this story with me) and I have tested this question on several people (guys and girls).  You'd be surprised at the reaction.
The scenario was as follows:

[I'm going to take this piece by piece.]

A girl meets a guy and decides to spend the night at his house because she really likes him (in fact, the feeling is mutual). 

Are we talking one night stand, or like going to #BoneTown after a first date? I'm going to assume that they have intentions of getting together again in the future.

The guy, really digging this girl, decides that he will let her stay at his place while he goes to work and just asks that she locks the door behind her when she leaves (no keys are actually left).

I totally respect this move - but only with a girl you actually like, not a rando. Get dressed in silence to not wake the girl up, leave a glass of water on the nightstand, and go be miserable at work while she just sleeps the fucking day away. Do girls not have jobs? Either way, GOOD HOSTING.

The girl sleeps in, gets ready, and realizes she has to take a big poop (yes, girls poop... get over it).

I am immediately terrified of where I know this is going.

The girl, post-poop, realizes the toilet is not flushing because it is broken (note: there is not a second bathroom,there is no roommate to blame it on, and there is no plunger or other device to unclog the toilet).  So she thinks "I have two options:

Oh god no, I hate when I'm right.

1) leave it and hope he still calls me or 2) scoop it with a bag (Ziploc, plastic grocery store bag, whatever) and bring it outside to throw out." (...let's hope she doesn't forget the bag when she leaves)

From a guy's perspective, what would be the best reaction to the scenario?  And how would you respond if she went with option 1 or if you found out, later in life, that she went with option 2?

WELL. Quite the pooptuation we've got on our hands here. LET'S EXAMINE:

Option 1: You leave the chocolate dragon behind. Obviously, you have to text the guy explaining that you used the facilities, it didn't take, and you didn't realize until after that there was no plunger around. There is no WAY the guy can get mad at you because any guy who pays rent or owns a house and maintains a bathroom without a plunger is EVIL. Shit happens, and every bathroom should have a plunger. That's a no-brainer. Even if it's one of those awful wooden-stick pink-plungers that do more harm than good.

Also, I'm pretty sure that 99% of the world has clogged the toilet at one point in their life. Does this hypothetical guy make those little deer pellet poops? I QUESTION HIS MANLINESS.

Option 2: Pooper Scooper. Yeesh. On the surface, this is pretty much the grossest thing imaginable. I know at one point in my life, I dropped my keys in the toilet and had to fish them out. Ever wrap your hand in a plastic bag and stick it in a toilet? SO COLD. But that was in a fresh toilet with no fudgemonster brewing. This is... a slightly different ballgame.

I'll say this: I would, in the weirdest way possible, respect the shit out of the girl that pulls this off.  I'm pretty sure if you ever do this, you HAVE to marry the guy just so you can tell the story at your wedding and bring the motherfucking HOUSE down in laughter. At that point, he's obviously pot-committed to you and would have to be the most pathetic person in the world to leave you on your wedding night because one time you had to wrap your arm in a Ziploc and go deep sea diving in his toilet.

I guess there is no best choice. With option 1, you're going to find out very quickly if he's mature enough to deal with the fact that girls actually do poop. If you go with option #2 (APPROPRIATE OPTION NUMBER), you'll be keeping a dirty secret until you're comfortable enough with the guy to come clean.

Personally, I'd leave the loser right away for not having a plunger in his bathroom. This isn't Bosnia. Buy a fucking plunger.


Thanks for your questions. Iowa preview next week. Happy Halloween!


1 comment:

  1. gotta have a plunger
    -ya sister
    great stuff, keep it up