Monday, December 31, 2007

More Windows punkage

So my friend Anth is shopping for a new computer. He wants a laptop, something small and sleek for his downtown condo. He's got the right circle of friends to help him make this decision: a couple of programmers, an IT guy, and a sales guy for an IT distributor (aka a whole bunch of nerds).

I told him he should get a Mac. In fact, I tell everybody that. I am a Mac fanboy, and I have no problem admitting it either. Macs are better than PCs, but not for the reasons that everyone assumes. Sure, the hardware is beautiful, but the real power comes from the operating system, Mac OS X, and its tight integration with Apple's other software offerings (iTunes, iPhoto, iMovie, etc.). Windows flat out sucks when it comes to this (and it sucks for just about every other category used to compare OSes).

The problem, you see, is that my friend is a bit of cheap-o. He wants to wait until after the new year to reap the rewards of a 1% reduction in the GST. For a $600 laptop, that amounts t0 6 dollars. Six Bucks! And he wants the best deal possible -- something for nothing. Granted, he's not a computer power user like myself -- I've maxed out the amount of memory my laptop can handle, and I still feel like I could use some more -- so he is able to purchase a low-end computer and make it last for years and years. Perhaps spending $1200 bucks for a Macbook isn't sensible when an $800 Toshiba will do the trick.

But I implore you ... Don't do it! Take a look at this picture I took while I was at Esso pumping gas. They have these media terminals now, running video ads and such. They are apparently running Windows, because it says so in the blue screen of death! How embarrassing...

Check out this article from PC World. Nobody wants Vista. Who do you know that's upgraded? I don't know anybody!

Anyways, that's my opinion. If you end up buying a PC, so be it, just make sure you have a wireless router for your net connection, or as an alternative, never invite us to your place. That is all.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Raptors 79, Rockets 91

I didn't get to watch most of this game, because of TeamID Bad Santa (more on that in a later post). But what I did see did not impress me. Going through the boxscore left a more sickening feeling in my stomach. The Raps are 16-15, what the fuck! Whatever you did to get a win ... just do it again!
  • 37% shooting ... I can do that!
  • 17 free throw attempts, and 53% shooting?
  • Andrea Bargnani, please try to remember that this is your second year in the league. Act like it!
  • Juan Dixon's 13 minutes of PT contributed heavily to our loss. Reducing his playing time will eventually lead to more wins

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Raptors 83, Spurs 73

Jon, said, and I quote: "Mark it down as an L". Now, if there was a truest Raptors fan award, there would only be one name on the ballot. Me!

The headline on my newspaper would have read, "San Antonio's spurs no match for Raptors' claws", or "Spurs spurred by Raps", or "Raps kick shit out of fuckheads", or "Anthony wins battle of the Parkers".

The Raps weathered a Spurs run in the third, which saw a 12-point halftime lead buckle, but never break. The Raps biggest mistake was allowing prolific loser Juan Dixon to get burn, instead of just playing 4 players. What were you thinking?!
  • I'm all for Andrea Bargnani enrolling in the school of hard knocks, but does that need to mean that Rasho Nesterovic isn't allowed to play anymore?
  • Kris Humphries' stock continues to skyrocket
  • When we were at The host getting our eat on, Cathy kept asking for "Chicken Bargnani".
  • Fuck Juan Dixon. If Beth marries this guy, then she and I are "hi and bye".
  • Jason Kapono is earning his paycheque.
  • I did not appreciate my wife's premature "We win!" proclamation at the 4:32 second mark in the fourth quarter. Are you crazy!?
  • We showed excellent defensive intensity in the fourth quarter, which was a breathe of fresh air after a poor effort against the Sonics.
No T-Mac against the Rockets? Kick 'em while they're down!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Talib Kweli will come and clean your house

The second annual TeamID awards are shaping up to be quite the event. New awards have been created, the most noteworthy being The Talib Kweli Home Cleaning Gift Certificate (sponsored by Chin). It's awarded to the TeamID member with the messiest home. Now that everyone has moved out, we can see how much these bozos relied on their parents to keep their rooms clean! You lazy pricks, pick up a duster and get to work!

In order to help voters make an informed decision, CathyAl conducted surprise inspections. Edited using iMovie '08 (Apple fanboy strikes again), and posted on YouTube (Google fanboy strikes again), here they are for your viewing pleasure.










What are your thoughts? Who is the frontrunner? Let me know what you think!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Best of 2007 (according to me)

When I was younger, I had all the time in the world. I could play tons of video games, watch tons of movies, and fit in some TV as well. Now, with stupid work in the way, I can't keep up. It's great that I can cut the crap (I didn't watch DOA: Dead or Alive, for instance), but it sucks that I'm missing out on stuff that I wouldn't have missed when I had 13-year-old time.

So, my best-of lists will probably not match yours (because I'm not as lazy as you are, and you obviously have all the time in the world), and there will probably be some glaring omissions, but ... tough luck, this is my blog!

Best movies of 2007
It's kinda funny, I was going to list the top 10, but when I counted, I had only watched 9 movies in the theatre this year! So here are my top five:
  1. Superbad: "It was either McLovin, or Mohammed" ... Friggin hilarious!
  2. 300: "This ... is ... Sparta!"
  3. Bourne Ultimatum: "If you were in your office, we'd be having this conversation face-to-face"
  4. American Gangster: I don' have a witty one-liner for this one, but trust me, it's a great movie
  5. Knocked Up: I'm tired of the haters! Judd Apatow and Seth Rogen rock!
Best albums of 2007
  1. Alicia Keys - As I am: My average is dropping slightly, which is to say that I am only listening to the album once a day instead of 3 times a day.
  2. Ne-Yo - Because of you: Never thought I would like it, but I absolutely love it
  3. Jay-Z - American Gangster: "Don't compare me to other rappers/compare me to trappers, I'm more Frank Lucas than Ludacris"
  4. Kanye West - Graduation: Your third album is nice with it, but not as nice as your big brother (aka B.I.G.'s brother, used to be Dame and Biggs' brother)
  5. Beyonce - BDay: Whenever someone says, "To the left", I have this uncontrollable urge to sing, "To the left, to the left"
Must see TV 2007
  • Dexter - Season 2: Serial killer meets stand-up comedian
  • Lost - Season 3: Jack and Kate meet "the others"
  • Heroes - Season 1: Sylar meets Peter. Chin meets disappointment
  • Californication: Down-on-his-luck writer meets lots of hot girls ... and has sex with all of them.
  • Damn near anything on TLC: Jon and Kate plus eight, Little People Big World, LA Ink, Miami Ink, American Chopper, Flip this House, oh my!
Favourite Video games 2007
  • Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
  • Wario Ware: Smooth Moves
  • Metroid Prime: Corruption
  • Rainbow Six Vegas
  • Guitar Hero 2
  • Rock Band
  • Bomberman
  • Call of Duty 4
Let me know what I missed!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Raptors 103, Suns 122

The holiday season has left me too busy to blog about the Raptors. And the losing is making me sad. But tis the season to be jolly, so instead of harping on the recent lack of team defense, I'll just take this opportunity to wish you happy holidays instead.

Happy holidays Raptor fans!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Raptors 115, Sonics 123

I can't comment much on this game, partly because I missed some of it (in transit to Chin's birthday party), and partly because I was tipsy for some of it (drinking mad drinks at Chin's birthday party).

But I can say this: Our defense has been horrible against Portland and Seattle. What's going on Raps? Why are you giving up 123 points?

Anyways, tonight against the Suns will either be a landmark victory for the Raps, or a massacre. Raptor fan must believe it will be the former.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Raptors 96, Blazers 101

I was sad after this game. We should have won. I question coach Mitchell's decision to leave the likes of Darrick Martin (poor offensive decision-maker), and Andrea Bargnani (poor team defender) on the floor for 5+ minutes in the fourth quarter, against a Blazer squad that had one run left in their young bodies. We should have won.

For the first time, I wrote notes during the game:
  • AP good D on Roy early in the game
  • Rasho Nesterovic, the offensive monster!
  • Nate MacMillan pinstripe suit: Bay, what do you think about that?
  • Andrea Bargnani, you'll get your confidence back, slowly but surely. Love that aggressive ball fake and drive to the basket.
  • Jose Calderon had Steve Blake completely turned around!
  • LaMarcus Aldridge will shoot it -- in your face!
  • Brandon Roy is a baller
  • AP seems to only be able to hit 3-pointers from the corners ... put him up top, and he can't hit them
  • Jose Calderon has made Steve Blake look silly all night
  • Did you see Brandon Roy switch hands in mid-air?!
  • Darrick Martin, please stop shooting the basketball
At least we can beat the Sonics ... right?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Raptors 80, Clippers 77

Only the hardcore breed of Raptor fan stays up to watch them during a West Coast road trip. I'm usually in bed by 11PM, but instead, I was up watching Mike Dunleavy's walking wounded (aka the LA Clippers).

After the first half, I questioned why I was sacrificing sleep. The offense was horrible! If they weren't taking stupid shots, they were missing wide-open shots. Or missing from the free throw line. Thankfully, the Clips sucked as well.

In the third, the Raps took care of business, thanks to kick-ass defense. The Clips only scored 11 points! After a bit of a scare (thanks to ... Richie Frahm?), I went to bed a happy Raptors fan.
  • Block party! Corey Maggette, your ass was CB'd more than Shaun's closest circle of male friends. Bosh blocked your ass ... Jamario blocked your ass ... even Andrea Bargnani blocked your ass!
  • Healthy CB4 vs. Tim Thomas on one foot just ain't fair ... and the Raps knew it. In the fourth quarter, they kept feeding Bosh, and he ended up with 16 trips to the charity stripe. I love it!
  • Chris Kaman, you got locked the fuck down!
  • Jamario Moon got his offensive game back.
  • AP 0-6? Ugly!
  • Richie Frahm? Who is this guy?
The only thing worse than sacrificing sleep to watch the Raps, is doing it on back-to-back nights. Fuck these Blazers!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Raptors 77, Celtics 90

Third time was not a charm.
  • The Celtics' defense is disgusting. Nobody gets an open shot. They switched to a matchup zone at times, which the Raps could not figure out.
  • Andrea Bargnani, what's going on?
  • I'm glad that Rajon Rondo has been reading my blog, and decided to smarten up. He played well today.
  • I'm sure the ladies will love Carlos Delfino even more, now that he has stitches on his eye.
  • The game ended early, when Sam Mitchel decided to sub in Juan Dixon. 0-4 from the field. What a piece of garbage.
  • Carlos Delfino and Jamario Moon are on my ill-advised shot watchlist. I'm watching you guys!
Wish me good luck next week, as the Raps go to the west coast, and I have to stay up past my bedtime on Tuesday AND Wednesday to watch them play. Tim Hortons, gimme a helping hand!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Review: I Am Legend

The poorly titled Will Smith flick, "I Am Legend", had a weak plot, a fairly predictable ending, poor computer graphics, and comic relief that was only marginally funny.

But it still scared the shit out of me. I really, really, really, don't need this kind of drama in my life. I don't need zombies jumping out of the shadows. I don't need suspense scenes without a soundtrack. Most importantly, I don't need my friends laughing and making jokes about me. I don't need it! Fuck!

So, in spite of all of the movie's pitfalls, I came out pumped and excited. All, in all, a good moviegoing experience.

If I were the last man on earth, I'd do things a lot differently:
- Walk the streets with more firepower. How about a machine gun at least? Or an RPG? Who's going to mess with you when you're packing that much heat?
- Move out of my house, and into a more high-level security facility. Then, even if zombies followed me home, it wouldn't matter. I'll invite them over, and watch them trip over my claymore mines. Surprise, bitches!
- Practice my jumpshot
- Watch more porn. No wonder he went crazy after 3 years, he didn't have any release!
- Set up a sick computer, so I could play all the PC games I could never play with my crappy AMD Duron processor. And, I got all the time in the world! Oh snap, I forgot to feed the dog!

Raptors 104, Pacers 93

Four game winning streak! Come from behind victory! Four games over .500! Life for Raptor fan is great.
  • Jose Calderon: 16 assists, 2 turnovers.
  • Carlos Delfino got cut above the eye, and instead of crying like Vince Carter was known to do, he walked off the court with a scowl on his face. Gritty!
  • Jason Kapono, your shot is like a Ruth's Chris steak ... delicious! Jose Calderon whipped a pass out to JK that was too high. Instead of bringing the ball back down to set up his shot, Kapono just flicked his wrist and dropped the 3 ball.
  • Chris Bosh or Jermaine O'neal? C'mon man, JO is garbage!
  • Jose Calderon didn't give up on the fast break, and blocked Kareem Rush. Carlos Delfino didn't give up on a Dunleavy layup, and swatted it away. Raptor fan appreciates the effort!
  • David Harrison is proof that we are descendants of Neaderthal
What's next? Let's beat these Celtics already!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Raptors 92, Mavericks 76

Thanks John, for hooking me up with the free tix, this game rocked!
  • Kris Humphries was an absolute monster. He had to fight Diop and Dampier for rebounds, and he came away with 12 of them! 5 of them were offensive, and I swear he had no business grabbing at least 2 or 3 of them. Went up, grabbed that board, put it back ... And 1!
  • TJ Ford paid a visit, and received a standing ovation. Glad to see you're okay, TJ!
  • The Mavs didn't want to come out and guard CB4's jumper. He made them pay.
  • Dirk Nowitzki is not MVP-caliber this year.
  • There was some loser sitting behind me, and every time he opened his mouth, something ignorant came out. "waaahh, why are they just standing around on defense?" ... "waaah, they should rebound the basketball" ... I was so friggin close to turning around and slapping him in the face.
  • The Raps had excellent motion in their offense. Jason Kapono was the recipient of a nice Carlos Delfino pass, because he cut to the basket. Rasho Nesterovic also had a wide open dunk (and he didn't miss, either), thanks to people driving in the lane and drawing shotblockers out of position. Even Bargnani got into the act, cutting to the basket and getting 2 + 1. I love it!
  • I thought the Raps played excellent defense for the most part. Andrea Bargnani and CB4 did a great job on Nowitzki. Bargnani also helped out a lot on the screen and roll when Jose Barea was on the floor. Delfino and Parker were active, and came away with a few steals.
  • Jason Kapono's 3-rock to end the first half was gold. Great ball movement all night!
  • Some lady was playing the Raptors' version of Deal or No Deal. The deal: A signed CB4 jersey. Should she take it? The crowd seemed to think so. But, she didn't. Instead, she picked one of the cases, and won a whopping $1. Pw3nd1.
  • I am now the owner of a reversible toque, with a Raptors claw at the front. Wicked!
John, do you have any free tix for Sunday's game?

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Raptors 93, Rockets 80

Nothing makes a weekend feel more complete more than a Raptors win. Aaah.

The Raps looked great on both ends, thanks to some second half adjustments, and of course, the return of Chris Bosh to the lineup. Offensively, once they got troublemakers Jamario Moon and TJ Ford off the floor, the offense cleanup up, and the team got great looks every possession. Kris Humphries and Jason Kapono looked especially good on the offensive end, taking it to the basket, and not being afraid of the Ming Dynasty spitting lead in their faces. Jose Calderon was an absolute maestro, conducting to the tune of 6 assists and "cero" turnovers (that's Spanish for "zero" ... Dora ain't got shit on me!).

Defensively, the intensity picked up in the second half, which included a CB4 block on a T-Mac layup attempt. Also, blocking the crap out of Carl Landry was fun, except for not coming away with the basketball part.

I was especially pleased with everyone's patience. We grabbed a lot of offensive rebounds (18, I just double-checked), and if CB4 was on the floor, he was the first option with our second attempt. Carl Landry? Chuck Hayes? They can't guard you!

Let's keep up the winning!

French Fry Tour 2K7

So far, since I've ended my french fry ban, I've had McDonald's, and Taco Bell. And while that's been all well and good, what I've really missed during my ban is poutine. Now, whether you pronounce it, "pooh-teen", or "puh-tin", you've gotta love it's artery-clogging awesomeness. Now that's good eats right thurr!

We were at Sherway Gardens on Saturday, and before I spent half an hour at the Apple store flicking through menus on the iPod Touch, I made a stop at New York fries. Man, this picture is making me hungry...

Raptors 84, Celtics 112

It took a 16-2 start, a Ray Allen game-winner, and a 28-point blowout (leaving us 0-2 against Boston), but now I believe. The Celtics are for real. This game was so ugly that for the first time this season, I did not finish watching the game. Instead, I watched Kenny vs. Spenny. Damn that Kenny, he's always cheating!

I couldn't really pick out what makes Boston's defense so good. It looked to me more like the Raptors were just taking bad shots. But Boston can't be number 1 in both opponent points and opponent field goal percentage because every team they play turns stupid against them.

And offensively ... is there a player that can stop Kevin Garnett? maybe 2-3 players combined can stop him, except he has Paul Pierce and Ray Allen as passing options. Fuck!

I took solace in the fact that the Celts have a weakness: Rajon Rondo. This kid is garbage.

So what happens next? As long as CB4 is out, we keep losing to top tier teams. No Bosh, and we're going to rack up plenty of Ls in December. Starting against the Rockets.

Ugh.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Sick custom license plate

When I was driving in this morning, I was behind an Infiniti M35x. The first thing I noticed was that the car had a Raptors logo on the license plate. Beside it, was

RPTRFN

Nice! I think this is a sign that we're going to beat Boston tonight, I can feel it!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Raptors 123, Suns 136

The good news last night was that the Raptors scored 123 points. That's most likely a season high for the team (I'm too lazy to verify). Even with Bosh and Bargnani out of the lineup, the Raps are still able to generate points, thanks to the playmaking abilities of Ford and Calderon, coupled with our numerous offensive options.


The bad news is that the Raptors still lost the game.


The ugly news? How about allowing 136 points for starters? That's an NBA season high! Do you understand what that means? It means for the whole season, for every single game that's been played so far, between any two teams, the Suns 136 are the most any team has ever scored. Embarassing!


They also allowed 45 points in the coffin-closing 3rd quarter. Case ... Closed. You like that shit, Jon? Ah, forget it, you don't even read my fucking blog. Wait. That was supposed to read, "you don't even fucking read my blog." Shit. Ummm ... try not to read this paragraph.


I'm not going to kid myself, cheering on the Raptors against the Suns is like cheering for Ben Johnson when he tried to race against a horse. But really, the Suns exploited the same weaknesses that we have against other teams:
  • Poor transition defense
  • Poor defense against slashers cutting to the basket
  • Poor perimiter defense

That basically means we suck in all aspects of defense. Not all the time, mind you. But enough times for it to cost us. I can say that there were a number of good defensive stands, and one in particular that I remember, where the Suns had to swing around the perimiter twice, and still couldn't find an open shot. The Raps switched when they were supposed to switch, rotated when they were supposed to rotate, and Leandro Barbosa was forced to take a wild 3 ball. These stands were few and far between.

TJ Ford had that look in his eye in the fourth quarter. He was putting the team on his shoulders. Unfortunately, for all of his one-on-one offensive sickness, the Suns had an answer. Sometimes multiple answers.

Friday, we get our rematch with Boston. CB4, we need you!

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Raptors 98, Bobcats 79

This game was so one-sided and boring that they had to make it TJ Ford bobblehead night in order to attract fans. It was so uneventful that the ACC fans were most excited at the possibility of pizza (which is free if the Raptors score 100 or more points). They were booing at the end of the game when the Raps only scored 98. Quiet, quiet, quiet, cheering, booing. That's how it went.

It was so uninspiring that Rasho and Jamario were missing dunks.

And I was so sure of a win that I almost didn't even feel like writing about it. Now, we got Phoenix on Wednesday, and Boston on Friday. We've got some momentum, and hopefully we get our offensive weapons back from injury. Let's go get these wins!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Birthday Love

Thanks to everyone that came out for ChrisAl's annual birthday bash. Pictured left is my imitation angry face (on account of me being forced to share my birthday every year).

I wanted to thank everyone for making this a total weekend celebration. Thanks to Chin for hosting the friend's party on Saturday night. Thanks to Osmos in Streetsville, for hooking us up with delicious Shawarma goodness. Thanks to Kev for sharing his Courvoisier (it was delicious!)

Thanks to Tito Ric and Tita Lyn for hosting the family party on Sunday. Thanks to my everyone that helped clean up (and helped eat all of the food, too!).

Thanks for all of the birthday wishes. I feel so much love!

Most of all, thanks to my wonderful wife. I don't know what I did to deserve you. You've worked so hard this week to make all of this happen. I appreciate it all. I love you with all of my heart!

Now, as a bonus feature to this post, watch me end my french fry ban! Here's the back story for those that need it.

Raptors 97, Wizards 101

Damn you Raps! I wanted a win for my birthday!
  • Andrea Bargnani 2-13 from the field? Despicable!
  • Why are we allowing so many fast break points? Easy layups?
  • Antawn and Caron were nice with it. Imagine if Gilbert was there too? Oh snap!
  • We gotta do something about having so many jump shooters on our team.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Raptors 91, Cavaliers 82

I had the game on, but I wasn't really watching. When you know your team is going to win before the tip-off, it's not that interesting. Seriously, who are the Cleveland Cavaliers without LeBron James?

I wish Carlos Delfino had as much offensive efficiency as he did tonight. Ditto for Andrea Bargnani. I'm not talking about output, mind you. I'm just talking about counting on these guys to put the ball in the basket. I'm just talking about not going 1-5. C'mon guys!

Tomorrow, we play the Arenas-less Wizards. Let's go for 4 straight!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Thanks for the (Random Access) Memories

Thanks to my friend, Shaun, I am now the proud owner of 2GB Kingston brand RAM. Along with other recent upgrades this year (250 GB HD, Mac OSX 10.5), I now have my laptop as pimped out as it's going to get. Well, at least for the next 3 months.

Do you know anyone that wants to buy 2 512MB sticks of RAM?

Raptors 103, Grizzlies 91

Just like the other Memphis game last week, there's not much to talk about here. The Grizz were coming off a back-to-back, they were tired, and as the game went on it showed. The Raps, on the other hand, had not played since Sunday, and came in with shooting legs. Incidentally, they shot 51% from the field. Chuck could have called Salami and Cheese at the first half buzzer.

What is of concern is that the Raps are wounded. TJ Ford is taking his time coming back from an arm stinger, and last night we lost Bosh and Bargnani (hopefully not for an extended period of time). Yes, we are deep, but when you lose this many significant players, and need to rely on the likes of Juan Dixon and Joey Graham, a team like Cleveland (Friday) looks sorta scary.

I hope you had a great time, Ruby! Did you get a bobblehead? Let me know how you liked the game.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Birthday Wish LIst 2K7

A yearly tradition here on my blog is to compile a list of cool shit that I like (as I did in 2005), or that I would be interested in acquiring (a la 2006).

Who am I to fuck with tradition? Oh yeah, the disclaimer: I do not want any gifts for my birthday! I have a job, and I can buy my own stuff. If my wife says it's okay. I just want to share stuff that I might like to receive. From myself ... With permission ... Unless someone was generous enough to give it to me ... On to the list!
  • The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass
    I love Legend of Zelda games, and I love my Nintendo DS. This is a match made in Nintenheaven.
  • Guitar Hero 3
    I know, I know, I should be all about Rock Band. But it ain't out for the Wii. And whenever I get my Wii back (damn you Dooch!), I wanna be able to rock out like everyone else.
  • Metroid Prime: Corruption
    See above.
  • Super Mario Galaxy
    See above.
  • Macbook Pro
    I love my laptop. I love Mac OSX Leopard. Can you say that same about your laptop and Windows Vista? I didn't think so:


  • Sharp Aquos 52" LCD TV
    Sometimes I go to Best Buy, just to stand and stare at the wall of Plasma and LCD TVs. When we buy our TV, we're going to mount it to one of these swivel wall mounts. Oh snap! It comes off the wall!
  • Roc-a-wear Jeans
    It's the ROC!

  • Raptors T-shirts with the Raptors claw on it
    I have two now!



  • Dexter: Season 1
    Jon knows his TV and Film. When he told me to watch Dexter, I did what he said, because I trust his judgment. Oh yeah, and cuz he's old enough to be my father, and I always do what my Dad tells me to do. The show is hilarious!
  • Californication
    I don't have any wittyisms which may persuade you to watch this show. It has David Duchovny, of X-Files fame, and half-naked, hot women. That should be enough.
  • Toronto Raptors Tickets
    Even Ruby has Raptors tix! I wanna go to the ACC!
  • Bluetooth handsfree cell phone car kit
    The power of the interweb: I envisioned a device, that would plug into my car adapter, connected to my cell phone via bluetooth, and also plugged into my auxiliary input (which would allow me to use my stereo speakers when taking phone calls). I researched, and found this. The interweb has it all!
  • Honda Odyssey
    I only put this here to annoy my wife. Shit is big pimpin'! It's so spacious, it can seat 8! That's you, me, and sextuplets ... John and Kate plus 8 ain't got shit on us!



  • A Tattoo of my wife
    Ever since we started watching LA Ink, I've wanted to get a tattoo. It's going to be a portrait of my wife! I love her with all of my heart.
  • iPod Touch / iPhone
    So unnecessary, but so very very cool. I was playing with my brother's, and instead of playing music and watching movies, I was thumb-flicking through menus.
  • French Fries
    The ban ends soon!
Happy birthday to me!

Monday, November 26, 2007

My Friend Jon is a retard

So I'm chatting with my friend Jon ... and he's such an idiot. Here's how our conversation went:

Far Beyond The Stars says: (10:08:02 PM)
spanish night commercial is so funny

Al Torreno says: (10:13:45 PM)
gimme a link

Far Beyond The Stars says: (10:13:59 PM)
link to what?

Al Torreno says: (10:15:32 PM)
whatever the fuck commercial you're talking about?

Al Torreno says: (10:15:34 PM)
fuck jon

Al Torreno says: (10:15:39 PM)
you only wrote one line

Far Beyond The Stars says: (10:15:44 PM)
it's on raptors tv dumbass

Far Beyond The Stars says: (10:15:57 PM)
jose calderon and garbojosa

Far Beyond The Stars says: (10:16:13 PM)
"spanish night"?

Al Torreno says: (10:16:16 PM)
hang on a sec

Al Torreno says: (10:16:32 PM)
you wrote "spanish night commercial is so funny"

Far Beyond The Stars says: (10:16:38 PM)
they're advertising getting a free bobble head

Al Torreno says: (10:16:50 PM)
and I was supposed to figure out that you were talking about the Raptors?

Far Beyond The Stars says: (10:16:59 PM)
laugh

Far Beyond The Stars says: (10:17:08 PM)
that's why your iq is only 129

Al Torreno says: (10:17:35 PM)
that's why YOUR IQ is only 75!

Far Beyond The Stars says: (10:17:47 PM)
so vengeful

Things that are wrong with this chat log:
  • What the fuck else would I have been asking for when I said "gimme a link" ... Am I asking for a German sausage?
  • He called me a dumbass. HE called ME a dumbass! "Spanish night commercial" seems to be talking about something Spanish, or something that is happening at night. NOT something to do with the Toronto Raptors. But apparently, I didn't get it. "Spanish night commercial" obviously refers to the Raptors Grizzlies game this Wednesday. I apologize for my inability to connect the dots (with only one fucking dot!).
  • A commercial that shows up on TV has the ability to also show up on YouTube. Fucker.
I'm project failure of the year, because Jon is my project, and he hasn't gotten any better. In fact, I think he's gotten worse. And now, by posting this, I've sealed my fate for the 2007 TeamID Awards.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Raptors 93, Bulls 78

The Raptors picked up where they left off against the Cavs, continued to execute, and came away with the victory. I thought they looked polished offensively, and did a great job defensively as well.
  • The Bulls looked horrible offensively, like they didn't have any kind of game plan.
  • They say Jose Calderon can be a starter in this league. They are right. 14 assists, 1 turnover! He also punished the Bulls defense whenever they went under the screen -- You didn't know he could shoot? That ... was a mistake! (ah, Jet Li). To top it off, he played smart defense, and came away with a few steals. Excellent performance!
  • Introducing Jamario Moon! The shot-blocking, three-point burying, rebounding machine!
  • With Juan Dixon running point for 3 minutes in he fourth, the Raps go 0-6. I slapped my forehead so hard that it'll be red for another day or two. We're better off playing 4 players on the floor. Frig!
I needed to bring Ruby the red Civic in for servicing. I called Mississauga Honda and tried to get a Saturday appointment, but since I called on a Wednesday I got promptly owned. The lady on the phone asked me if Monday night was doable, so I asked her, "could you hold on for a sec? I need to check something." While she was on hold, I opened a browser window and checked raptors.com, just to make sure there wasn't a game! On that note, I'll see y'all on Wednesday against the Grizz.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Raptors 108, Cavaliers 111

The Raps fall short, but put up an excellent effort against the Bron-Bron and the Cavs. I was friggin biting my nails at the end of this one, as they had a great chance to steal a win in Cleveland. But falling 8 points with just under 4 minutes on the road requires divine intervention, and I guess Raptor fan hasn't been lighting enough candles, so it wasn't meant to be this afternoon.

The Raps have almost put things all together, and hopefully TJ and Rasho will come back soon so we can translate this awakening into actual wins (instead of the crappy moral variety). Their offense looked polished today, I felt more than any other game this season that they had executed exactly what was drawn up.

Defensively, on the other hand, is another story. I'm not talking about guarding King James. That guy is friggin unguardable. Someone steps in to take the charge, and LeBron still has the body control to go around him. He is not a human, he is a monster. I thought Carlos Delfino did a terrific job, especially on the Cavs' last possession, and forced a difficult fadeaway -- but it still went in. Besides, I needed James to score ... He's on my fantasy team! Go LBJ! I mean ... uhhh ... on with the blog post.

When I say the Raps' defense was lousy, I was talking about the laziness on their rotations. They were extremely poor rotating, and perimeter defense in general was weak, which allowed Cleveland to shoot 51% from the field and 43% behind the line. Daniel Gibson and Damon Jones torched us with open look after open look.

So now the Raps hover in and out of the .500 mark, but they're still off to a better start than last season, and I'm optimistic that they will get better. Truest Raptor fan 2K7!
  • If Zydrunas Ilgauskas gets the ball deep in the post, you can count the basket before he turns to shoot.
  • Chris Bosh is an offensive machine. I'm glad that everyone is (finally!) on the same page with the gameplan: Give him the rock. Dallas, Memphis, and Cleveland, he's posted 31, 22, and 41 points. He also got to the line 17 times. Game. You can even knock him in the face, like LeBron did, and he'll still eat you up!
  • Anthony Parker's 3-ball attempt with an opportunity to tie the game was horrible.
  • I am going to start the I hate Darrick Martin fan club. Since when did assistant coaches get a chance to suit up? Get this guy off the floor!
  • Did I mention that Chris Bosh is a beast? They can't guard you, son!
  • Eric Snow is still alive?
  • Other than CB4, the Raps went to the line 5 times. That stat is gross.
  • When Jason Kapono is on, it's on. He put in 2 clutch 3-pointers late (but it was too little, too late) :(
  • Bargnani has continued his offensive prowess of late, but the coaching staff need to help him with his defense. Please! Help him! Teach him or something.
  • Oh yeah, I almost forgot: What the heck was TJ Ford wearing? His jacket looked like it had and embroidered ... lobster? What the fuck is that thing?
Let's hope that we can thrash the Bulls at home tomorrow like we did in Chi-City. Tip is at 12. Adnan Virk was showing Bulls/Knicks highlights, and when they played a Chris Duhon clip he said, "Duhon to others as they would Duhon to you." Classic.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Review: American Gangster

Sorry that this review is late ... You can blame Alicia Keys and As I Am. I've been listening to that album approximately 3 times a day. I love it! I can't get enough of it. I even changed my ringtone to Track #1. I don't really like music concerts, but if A Keys comes to town, I'm so down.

In fact, that is the theme of tonight's post. Passion and inspiration. Are you passionate about something? Have you ever wanted to put all of your heart and effort into something?

What about inspiration? Have you ever seen or heard or learned something new, and have it take you in a new direction?

Take a lesson from Jay-Z. He's dropped 11 albums in 10 years, a testament to his love for making music. His hard work and entrepreneurial drive have taken him from Rap superstar to President and CEO of Def Jam, founder of Roc-a-wear + Roc-a-fella records, nightclub owner, and stakeholder in the soon-to-be Brooklyn (bye-bye New Jersey) Nets. Gatdamn!

With all of his success, he could've retired a long time ago, but he's still working hard, and that's because of passion. Hard work doesn't feel like hard work when it's something that you love to do. Couple that with inspiration, and you have a formula for creating something special.

Inspiration for Jay-Z came in the form of Ridley Scott's crime epic, American Gangster. I really liked this movie, but apparently not as much as "The gangster Shawn Corey." After watching a rough cut, he records an entire album blending the events of his own life with scenes from the movie. Inspiration and passion: The result is arguably the best Jay-Z album since his very first, Reasonable Doubt. Everything in-between is nice, of course (I mean, this is Jay-Z we're talking about, people!). But his latest album showcases him with such a high level of potency and focus.

The album has a 70s funk feel, which aligns with the timeframe of the movie. His lyrics are honest and introspective, a rarity in today's one-hit wonder/intellectually void hip-hop scene.

I should correct myself, his lyrics are serious at least half of the time. The other half is spent flossing and stunting, coming up with witty and humerous lines like, "Art with no easel, please there's no equal/Your boy's off the wall these other n****s is tito", or "I'm in a whole other league, n****s never catch me/And I sport fly shit I should win an ESPY." Hilarious! I love it! Vintage S-dot-Carter!

The only track I'm not feeling is titled "Ignorant Shit." Beanie Seagal, what do people see in this guy? Other then that, the album is a gem. Two thumbs up. 5 out of 5. What other cliche accolades can I award it? Just fucking listen to it already!

I feel like going out and writing again. Jay Tse, where my beats at?

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Raptors 95, Grizzlies 89

Yay! We win!

(I said I would try to blog after every game, and this post keeps my streak alive).

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Raptors 99, Dallas 105

The 2006-2007 Raptors, from January onwards, were the poised, confident Raptors. If they were down 5 in the fourth, it wouldn't be a problem, because they would make the plays down the stretch to win the game. If they were up 5 in the fourth, they would run their offense and get a quality shot every possession (and they would play sick defense).

The 2007-2008 Raptors, on the other hand, despite having the exact same core of players, are no longer poised and confident. They are blowing leads, and can't seem to stop the bleeding of a (insert double digit number here)-0 run. They become more selfish during an opponent's run, and no longer want to move the basketball. They are allowing a lot of fastbreak points, or what I'm going to call semi-fastbreak points: The defense is "set", but an offensive player on an isolation carves through the defense and scores within the first 10 seconds of the shot clock. Did you see Dirk Nowitzki eat up Andrea Bargnani? Or Devin Harris school whoever the heck was guarding him? Where is the help?

This is a mystery that baffles Raptor fans, and assuredly (hopefully?) coach Mitchell and his team are attempting to solve this very second. We should have beaten GS after we took the lead, and we should have beaten Dallas after being up 24. But we have no poise, and teams are capitalizing.

I don't have any answers. Do you?
  • ESPN reports that Garbo has been moved to the inactive list. Oh, I hope that it isn't something big. We need you back!
  • I am doubly mad that Nowitzki blew up last night, because not only did he help Dallas beat the Raptors, but he's helping my friends who added Dirk to their fantasy teams. Fuck!
  • I hate how easily the Raptors' defense collapses, and leaves 3 point shooters open. That speaks to either lack of preparation, or lack of communication.
  • 19 Raptor team assists. Anyone reading my blog knows what that translates into: Taking an L.
  • Chris Bosh had an excellent line (31 points, 12 rebounds, 7-10 free throws), but there were a few possessions in the fourth where it seemed like Dallas' defenders were wary of CB4's tricks. Sometimes Bosh is only looking to get fouled, so he's looking for contact. When the defender backs off, Bosh is completely off-balanced, at risk of travelling, and what he'll do is awkwardly release the ball and pray that it bounces in. In the fourth, everything was bouncing out. Plant and elevate, these guys can't stop you!
  • Bargnani also had a great offensive night, but he could not defend Dirk Nowitzki. It's okay, not very many players in the league can anyways. That doesn't mean you're off the hook, Andrea, you gotta work on that shit!
  • Devin Harris is friggin fast.
  • Is TJ Ford okay? Is he playing tonight?
Alright, next up is Memphis. They're better than they were last year, but we should still beat them. Dammit!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Raptors 100, Warriors 106

Fuck.

The Raptors are consistently inconsistent. Today, they added fourth quarter collapses to their repertoire. They kept shooting, and they kept missing. Instead of changing the gameplan, they just kept shooting.

Golden State is nice with it, but we should have had this game. Ugh.
  • 4-22 from the 3-point line? Are you fucking kidding me?
  • My favourite stat to track: Raps had 18 team assists. They are now 0-4 when they have less than 20 assists.
  • The Warriors switched to a 3-2 zone every once in a while. The Raptors are a jump-shooting team, which should mean that we should be great at busting zones. Apparently, one plus one does not equal two at the ACC.
  • Jamario Moon is a shot-blocking machine. He also had a sick dunk in the 2nd quarter.
  • If Chris Bosh is going to be 4-12 from the field every game, AND only get to the line 6 times, he's pretty much good for nothing. Smarten up!
  • Andrea Bargnani seemed to find his shot, which has been missing ever since he was pulled from the starting lineup. That's good! But he's still lost on defense. That's bad.
  • Stephen Jackson!
  • I don't care that Juan Dixon was 3-5 from the floor. He's garbage! Keep him off the floor!
  • Why isn't Garbo getting any minutes? Why!?!
  • TJ Ford had a nice game. This guy is a competitor.
Dear Raps ... please stop losing ... Please!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Raptors 110, Pacers 101

Raptors win! Raptors win! Raptors win!

The Raptors showed us last night the depth of their bench. Rasho is out with an ankle injury: No problem. Andrea Bargnani is in foul trouble (and his game, of late, smells foul): No problem. Juan Dixon sucks: No problem.

We'll just start Maceo Baston (who had not played 1 minute before last night's game), and give Garbo some minutes (which we all know he deserves). Let's go get this win.
  • When the Raptors have 20 or more assists, they are 5-1. Less than 20, 0-3. They need to move the basketball in order to be effective.
  • Jon is right: Jermaine O'neal is garbage. He is a product of the NBA hype machine.
  • Jamaal Tinsley lighting it up from the floor? WTF?
  • For Christmas, I want Jason Kapono's shot release.
  • Chris Bosh needs to get to the line like he did against the Pacers ... every single night.
  • Andrea Bargnani is missing his mom's home cooking, or something. Focus! (and I ain't talking about the Ford Focus ... That commercial with Coach Mitchell is terrible!).
  • Troy Murphy: TeamID has named you to the all "don't look like a baller" team. You join the likes of Chris Kaman, Kyle Korver, etc.
  • My highlight play of the night was ... no, it wasn't the AP 3-ball (although that was quite nice). It was a Chris Bosh offensive rebound. He didn't have inside position, but he outjumped O'neal, extended his arm, and snatched the ball out of mid-air! That's pure will.
See y'all on Sunday! Let's go Raps!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Raptors 88, Jazz 92

I was too sleepy (and too addicted to Dexter) to blog last night, and I'm too busy to blog this morning (well, too busy to go as in-depth as I usually do). But, I want to write after every game, so gatdammit, here it is!
  • The Jazz are a top-tier Western conference team. The Raps may or may not be a top tier Eastern conference team. I'm not sure, but what I'm sure of is that the disparity is staggering.
  • We may have lost by one or two possessions, but the Jazz were totally in control.
  • I said it before: We can't win without points from Bosh and Bargnani.
  • Dittio for Bosh not getting to the free throw line. It's like he figured it out in the fourth quarter, that he could take Boozer whenever he wanted, but by then it was too late.
  • You also can't win if you miss open looks, and commit unforced turnovers. Ford and Calderon looked terrible!
  • TJ Ford needs to take one step inside of the three-point line.
  • Deron Williams is sick. Don't call him, "D'Ron"
  • The Raps are still taking ill-advised shots. Last night, they just happened to go in. But I don't condone any of them! Moon, Parker, I'm looking at you!
  • Coming out of timeouts, The Jazz made the Raps look like a high school team. Schooled.
  • Why aren't the Raptors cutting to the basket as often as the Jazz?
  • Juan Dixon DNP makes Al happy.
See y'all on Friday.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Review: Alicia Keys, As I Am

Oh. My. god.

I don't think I can articulate just how much this album rocks. How much I absolutely love it. It has so much soul, so much character, so much "fuck, run that shit back, that shit is friggin sick!"

It feels like A Keys poured her heart onto each track, then waited a bit while her heart filled up again with love, then poured some more of it, until it overflowed. Then added some of her tears on top.

It makes me want to kiss my wife, and tell her I love her. A thousand times. And tell her that "no one, no one, no one, can get in the way of what I feel for you." Because sometimes I forget, but A Keys makes me remember again.

You and me together
Through the days and nights
I don't worry 'cuz
Everything's going to be alright
People keep talking, they can say what they like
But all I know is everything's going to be alright

The tracks showcase Alicia's amazing vocal ability. She pushes herself to the limit more than any of her previous albums. The production can't be categorized as R&B/Hip-hop, as it mixes a little bit of rock, funk, and of course, the piano. It's different, but at the same time, it makes me nod my head.

I am going to stop writing now, and listen to the album again.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Fastest route through the city?

The Google fanboy strikes again!

I'm trying to find the best route from my work (at Church and Bloor), to my wife's work (at King and Bathurst). Past 5PM, every friggin street is rammed! I'm looking for the magic route, where cars and traffic lights don't exist. Below are a few of my favourites, and I have some others that didn't work at all:
  • Queen street is rammed from Yonge to University
  • Ditto for College
  • The Gardiner doesn't move from Jarvis to Spadina
Do you have any suggestions for me?

Raptors 101, Bulls 71

Thanks to my nominee for worst organizer of the year (Shaun Sequeira), I had to listen to Raps/Bulls on the radio, and pick up Raptors game in an hour this morning.

On the radio, it sounded like a clear-cut blowout. I was thoroughly impressed, and glad that the Raps have put the offensive puzzle pieces back together. But watching the game this morning, my opinion has changed. We were just lucky that the Bulls sucked way more then we did last night. Ugly! Hopefully the 3 days rest will smarten them up!
  • 10 team free throw attempts? You live by the jumper, you die by the jumper (just ask Kirk Hinrich!)
  • 23 Raptor team turnovers won't get it done against the Pistons and Suns of the league, guaranteed.
  • I do like 36 team assists though. You could see, especially in the blowout third quarter, that the Raps were doing what they did last year to win games: move the basketball. Stop with this one-on-one shit, leave that to Kobe!
  • Andres Nocioni was the only noteworthy Bull. He was inside, he was outside, and when he's in the paint, he just bullies the ball into the basket. I love Argentinian toughness! That's why I'm big on Carlos Delfino (no Beth, not for his looks!)
  • Since when did the Raps have so much confidence in Jamario Moon? Where did this guy come from? One night, he's playing garbage time against the Bucks, then he's playing fourth quarter minutes against the Sixers, and now he's starting? Well, as long as we're winning, I ain't going to question it anymore!
  • I love AP and Kapono playing on separate units.
  • I love Juan Dixon relegated to garbage time.
  • I love Rasho. +35 when he was on the floor last night! His layups were so strong, Chuck and Leo thought they were dunks. Lay it up with authority, big man! That's how we roll in Slovenia!
  • Chicago fans chanting "Kobe" at the end of the game was fairly ghetto. This was the same team that took you to the playoffs last year. And they were predicted to take the East this year by many an NBA analyst. You wanna mess that up because of a 1-5 start? Lame!
No more games till Wednesday?! Need ... basketball ... fix ...

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Raptors 105, Sixers 103

I don't need this kind of drama in my life! (c) Alexis Torreno

The Raps finally put it all together, although they made a mess of things in the last 2 minutes. Hopefully we can do this against non-bottom feeder teams.
  • Andre Iguodala is a baller. Imagine, we could have drafted this guy! Instead, we drafted Rafael Araujo. (slaps hand on forehead)
  • AP is back! Instead of giving Kapono more minutes, they left AP on the floor, and he went 4-7 from three, including a few big ones in the 4th quarter. He finished with 22 points -- I love it!
  • The Raps had 25 assists, and it seems the magic number is to 20 or more in order to win.
  • Louis Williams? Who is this guy? That friggin 4 point play at the end was bullshit x 2 : He banked his 3-ball, and AP didn't foul him. Fuck that shit!
  • Jason Smith is friggin pasty!
  • Let's keep Bargnani coming off the bench and see if it works.
  • Chris Bosh: 18 free throw attempts. Nice! Keep on taking it to the basket!
  • Carlos Delfino had better be practicing free throws right now.
  • Jamario Moon!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Raptors 96, Magic 105

I treated my cousins from the Philippines to a night at the ACC. It was their first time watching NBA basketball. They told me afterwards that it was exciting and that they had a great time.

But...

It's just too bad that the Raptors lost. Again.

Slow starts have been plaguing the team through their 3 game losing streak. Last night, the Raps fell 13-2 early, allowed Orlando to score 31 in the first quarter, and had to climb uphill from that point onwards. Why does this keep happening?

A lot of the key pieces from last year's team have reduced roles this year. Rasho and Garbo are both playing off the bench, with less minutes per game to boot. Could this be the reason? Or maybe the addition of Jason Kapono means AP is totally out of his comfort zone? Parker did not attempt a 3, and was 1-6 outside of 18ParkervilleCourt.

Or could it be that Juan Dixon is this year's Mo Peterson: No conscience when he shoots, and he can't shoot. What a horrible combination. What the fuck is this guy doing on the floor in the 4th quarter?

Whatever the problem is, the Raps need to fix it. They need to reestablish roles. They need to smarten up on defense. They need to draw more fouls. And they need to NOT shoot 38% from the field.
  • Thank god I didn't see Jamario Moon on the floor last night.
  • Jason Kapono and Anthony Parker take many an ill-advised shot.
  • Hedo Turkoglu owned anybody that was guarding him.
  • Keith Bogans? Who is this guy? He's the guy that sticks open threes.
  • Rashard Lewis ain't worth what the Magic paid for, but he is worth a lot. We had a fourth quarter lead for all of 15 seconds. A Lewis three-ball on the other end deflated the Raptor's run. Done.
  • If I met Dwight Howard in a dark alley, I would turn and run, hoping and praying that he doesn't catch me and eat me. "Please don't eat me, please don't eat me, please don't eat me."
  • We are a three-point shooting team. I am okay with that. If the Raps are going to take 20 attempts beyond the arc, so be it. Just try to make more than 6 of them, please.
  • Stan Van Gundy walked onto the court to bark out instructions just before a jump ball, and I swear I saw the hardwood floor bend and warp.
  • Stat of the night: Chris Bosh 14-14 from the free throw line (although I could have sworn I saw him miss a free throw in the fourth quarter). You need to give this man more touches!
See y'all on Friday.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Raptors 85, Milwaukee 112

Will the real Toronto Raptors please stand up?

After coming out as offensive monsters against Philly and New Jersey, the Raptors the last two games have looked more like the last dog out of the gate at a greyhound race. They don't give a fuck about the rabbit. What's going on?
  • The Bucks wanted the rabbit. They scored 37 points in the first quarter.
  • The Raps were one and done the entire first quarter. No ball movement. Lots of dribbling between the legs, and lots of ill-advised shots early in the shot clock. I thought they would have learned from their slow start against Boston.
  • What's going on with Bosh? Maybe it's not Bosh, maybe there's a problem with the offensive sets. He doesn't seem to be in his comfort spots. I really hope his knee is okay.
  • Yi Jianlian is the real deal. I was thoroughly impressed with his game.
  • Desmond Mason 10 for 10? What is this? No really, what is this?
  • Michael Redd is not worth max money. I don't care how pretty his shot looks.
  • Jamario Moon was trying so hard to impress coach Mitchell that he forgot to think. Hopefully we won't need to see him on the floor for the next few games.
  • Give Kris Humphries more minutes! What a bully! In a night of lowlights, he provided the one play to cheer about: Swatting an Andrew Bogut layup back in his face! ... Then, on the other end of the floor, Hump committed an offensive foul. It was one of those nights.
I'll be at the ACC for the Raptors/Magic game tomorrow night. Here's hoping we bounce back!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Raptors 95, Celtics 98

Ugh. That was rough to watch. It was not just that we lost. What was worse was that we played a horrible first half of basketball.
  • There was too much one-on-one in the first half. Toronto only had 17 assists, and will not win a lot of games with a stat like that.
  • Juan Dixon was 2-2 ... in air balls.
  • Ray Allen was an absolute disgusting monster. For each of his clean looks from 3, My thought process would go from, "I hope he misses", to "what the fuck are you thinking? This guy ain't missing!" Quite a sickening feeling indeed, especially since my entire thought process completed before the ball was in the basket.
  • When they concentrate, the Raptors' defense is smothering. They forced 3 24 second shot clock violations, and CB4 finished with 5 blocks. I loved watching their close-outs, as well as their defensive rotation.
  • When they don't concentrate, Ray-Ray finishes 7-11 from 3-point range. Well, that'd probably happen even if they didn't concentrate.
  • KG owned the overtime period. For a few possessions, there was nothing better CB4 could have done defensively.
  • TJ Ford is clutch. I would put the ball in his hands at the end of the game anytime.
  • Bosh and Bargnani need to bring it offensively if the Raptors hope to repeat as Atlantic champs.
  • Where did AP go?
I'm taking my cousins out for the game on Wednesday against the Magic. Let's go Raps!

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Raptors 106, Nets 69

The sting of the game 6, 1 point defeat in the first round of last season's playoffs still hurts. What hurt even more was the embarrassment of blowouts in games 3 and 4. What makes the pain go away? Maybe watching the Raptors win a playoff series? Well, yes, of course. But I need something to hold me over.

Enter November 2, 2007. The Raps visit New Jersey, and in front of 20-30 die-hard Jersey-maniacs, completely dismantle the Nets. Oh, revenge is so petty ... but it felt so satisfying. I still watched all 48 minutes, despite the fact that the Nets never led at any point after the first quarter. My friend Chin had company over too, and to my credit, I did attempt to be social, but when the game was on I wasn't about any of that.
  • The Raps beating up on Vince Carter always brings a smile to my face.
  • Toronto defense was absolutely disgusting. Our perimiter defense, closing out on shooters, staying above the screens, they were all on point. The Nets had their shots bothered or blocked, a lot of them courtesy of Chris Bosh. NJ only shot 36.8% from the floor.
  • Roc-a-wear ads were displayed full-time on either end of the scorer's table. It's the ROC!
  • Jason Kidd's back is bothering him. Mental note: Never pick him for ESPN Fastbreak.
  • Darrell Armstrong did not look good at all. TJ Ford had no respect for his shot, and came under any picks that were set for DA. Oh punk!
  • Speaking of Ford, his one-dribble-plant-and-fade shot was a blistering 4-4 tonight.
  • Andrea Bargnani must have taken basketball Kumon, because he already looks like a polished NBA pro. Against the Nets, he put up 21 points, 6 rebounds, on 7 of 11 shooting. Pump fake, one dribble: money. Three point range: money. Three point range, quickly identifying that Darrell Armstrong can't block your shot: money. I'm loving his game.
  • Play of the night: Stifling Raptor defense ends in a CB4 block. TJ Ford receives the pass and quickly outlets a touchdown reception to Anthony Parker, who completes the layup.
  • Jon's Play of the night: Bosh steals a pass, and sinks a 70 foot buzzer-beating heave.
  • I'm all about Carlos Delfino. And no, Beth, I wasn't talking about his looks.
See y'all on Sunday!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Raps 106, Sixers 97

I'm going to try to write something after every Raptors game (at least the ones that I watch, which should be all 82).
  • I like the Raptors' new ACC video intro. It makes me think of how hot Cassie looks.
  • MLSE ponied up some cash to pay for a CG scorekeeper. Let's hope they ponied up some cash for a better director ... "Dude, I don't care about the ref's non-call, the fucking game's back on!"
  • The Raps blowing a 20 point lead to the lowly Sixers was quite disconcerting.
  • Andrea Bargnani looked really good. That 4 point play in the fourth quarter was sick!
  • Chris Bosh also had a sick play, finishing after he got fouled along the baseline.
  • We want Norma Wick back! ... I want Norma Wick back! ... I don't know what I want :(
  • Samuel Dalembert stoned Chris Bosh and Anthony Parker. What a beast! Beth didn't like Leo Rautins name-dropping so much, but if I knew Dalembert, I'd be name-dropping all the time! "So yo, I was at a restaurant last night with Samuel Dalembert, and he didn't like the food, so when the waiter tried to serve him, he stuffed it back in his face!"

Sunday, October 28, 2007

My basketball fever is rising

Yep, that's right. The 3 or 4 of you that frequent my blog know that I'm a die-hard Raptors fan. And it's that time of year again. Time for the smack talking and strategizing over the yearly basketball pools. Time to juggle my regular TV watching schedule, because "there's a game tonight." It's time for Raptor's ball!

I love what I've seen so far in the pre-season. The ball movement has looked really good, and our 3-point sharpshooters have been hitting their shots. Andrea Bargnani has looked more aggressive than his rookie campaign. Carlos Delfino also looked really good. Joey Graham looks ... Well, he looks like his twin brother Stephen. Anyways...

A lot of NBA analysts continue to doubt this squad. Most of the ESPN writers have Toronto as a bottom 4 seed. I guess being under the radar is better than being the hunted, but still ... Boston? For real? I'll believe it when I see it. Until then, I believe that the Raptors are going for 50+ wins this season, and that they will finish on top of the Atlantic.

For those of you in our ESPN Fastbreak pool, remember. $50 per person, and the winner takes all! I've got a secret weapon: My Greasemonkey script, which takes a player's game log and calculates the Fastbreak points for each game. Check it out:

Here's the before shot. It shows a game log for Kobe Bryant:
and here's the after shot. I replaced the "results" column with a calculation of Kobe's Fastbreak points for that game:
Oh snap! How did he do it? You won't find this script anywhere online, cuz I wrote it myself! PS ... Fuck y'all, I ain't sharing! Now, all I gotta do is win this stupid game, I haven't won since we were in university. Go Greasemonkey!

La Familia

Last weekend I was hanging out with a lot of family. There was new family (my godson Jayden's baptism), family from across the border (My cousins from Minnesota), and family from around the world (My cousins from the Philippines). Over the weekend I learned a lot:
  • Kids are great. I want to have kids as soon as possible.
  • My parents are anti-social. So that's where I got it from...
  • Mr Eko from Lost preaches at St Patrick's Church. "Ello"
  • I look really good in a suit.
Check it out!



Tuesday, October 16, 2007

East Coast 2K7 vol. 3

I will never, ever, EVER visit Fredericton, NB again for the rest of my life. In fact, my life depends on me staying away from this village of inbred, moronic, pathetic stooges. I am likely to be arrested for punching someone so hard that his head pops clean off his neck. An extra indictment would be added for using a human head as a soccer ball and running along the streets with my shirt off and my arms outstretched, yelling "gooooal!"

"Yo, Al, you seem upset" ... fucking right I'm upset! Let me break it down for you. Fredericton was roughly the halfway point from Halifax to Quebec City, during our journey back home. We decided it'd be a great place to stop and have a quick dinner.

After driving around so a.i. could get a shot of the Fredericton legislative assembly (which, by the way, was completely covered in scaffolding, an eyesore that Anth didn't seem to care about as he shot multiple digital shots with his camera and shot multiple cream loads in his pants), we voted 4-1 to eat at Harvey's. I voted for Tim Hortons, which nobody thinks about for dinner, but would most certainly have been the better choice once you learn more about my teeth-grinding encounter.

So we pull into this Harvey's, and it's barren. Everyone must have been at home working on their 1000-piece jigsaw puzzles, or watching Hee-Haw on their VCR, or whatever the fuck they do for fun in Fredericton. The emptyness is an important part of my story.

I walk up to the cashier, and place my order: "one hamburger, and one hamburger combo, with onion rings and a root beer." Easy enough, right? We pay with cash, and the dude hands me my receipt. Innocent enough, right? I throw out the receipt, cuz that's what I do with receipts when I pay cash. Now, here's where things take a turn for the worst.

The guy who's in charge of putting toppings on the burger tells me to "Continue forward, please" ... What the fuck? There's nobody else here. What's the rush? Then, he asks me for my receipt. "Sorry man, I threw out my receipt", I tell him. He rolls his eyes at me ... The fucker rolled his eyes! "Well, what did you order?", He asks me. Fucker, There are only 5 people in line, and I'm at the front of the line. Whatever the fuck you have cooked is mine! I didn't say that, of course, I simply pointed to the two hamburgers behind him, and said, "The two burgers behind you."

So the guy puts what we asked for on our burgers. Great. This fucking bozo is good for something. He places the burgers on the tray, and then stares blindly at the wife and I. Cathy reminds me that she ordered onion rings, so I let dickwad know. He tells me, in the most condescending of voices, "There's nothing I can do without the receipt. You need your receipt for me to know what you ordered." Are you fucking kidding me? Did you graduate from elementary school? Is your job that difficult, really? If you want, I can jump over the counter and fix my own burger. Seriously.

Maybe I can teach you guys a few things. Like, if you really need the receipt, you place it on the tray, instead of handing it to the customer. Or, if you want to avoid getting your ass kicked, you should be mindful of what you say and how you say it.

Fuck you, Fredericton Harvey's. That is all.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

So not cool

My cousin messaged me from work with new Starcraft II footage. Being the SC fanboy that I am, I quickly stopped working and checked it out. Turns out that she was punking me. I was devastated:

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

East Coast 2K7 vol. 2

Our day in Halifax was slow paced and chillin. No need to cram in tons of tourist attractions because ... there ain't nothing to see!

Since we got in really late, we slept in. Well, if you ask Chin, he'd probably tell you nobody slept except for Shaun. There has always been a history between Chin, Shaun, and snoring. Chin can't stand the snoring. Shaun denies it's even him to begin with. Everyone else benefits from the ebb and flow, as we watch the punkage fireworks explode.

The theme song of Halifax: "Real Talk", from R Kelly's album Double Up. If you've never heard it, you should give it a listen. Hilarious.

We had lunch by the water, and I thought maybe it'd be a good idea to order an Alexander Keith's, even though my ass always gets sick whenever I drink beer. When in Rome, ya heard? Long story short, My stomach didn't feel right until dinner. Fuck you and your India Pale Ale.

Chin went up the Wave, and Shaun tried to go up. Twice. Did he make it up? C'mon dawg, what do you think? a.i. also tried to make it up, but it was a half-assed attempt that made Chin look like an olympian and Shaun look like a special olympics medalist.

We were loafting around some statue, and took this video:



Shaun and I stopped by the casino, while those other guys continued loafting around. We met back in time for our dinner at the Five Fisherman. This is what we drove all the way to Halifax for. This is what we were waiting for. Fresh, east coast lobster, bitches! Believe me, it was worth it.



I wanted to watch my countryman Manny Pacquiao fight in a Halifax bar, but I knew I wouldn't be able to stay awake. So I went to sleep. It was sometime around 10 or 11. I'm starting to get old yo. Dang.

We went to visit the Halifax harbour before we left, and then it was off to Quebec City! Thanks for the lobster, Halifax!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

East Coast 2K7 vol. 1

Team ID's annual Thanksgiving trip has been going strong for 5 years. New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago. This year, we thought we would try to be more ambitious. So we "plotted a course" (as Shaun might say, being the Star Trek fanboy that he is) to Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Now, Google Maps told us that the 1700-1800km trip would take around 17 hours. Since there are 24 hours in a day, and since everyone is a licensed driver, we figured we could make the trip there in one day. We also figured that if we took a more direct route, crossing the border and going through the US, we would save 1 or 2 hours.

Wrong!
The trip there was absolutely brutal. 21-22 hours brutal. We started at 5AM. I took the first leg, and drove on approximately 1.5 hours sleep. It took 4 separate drivers to get the job done. Around 8pm, we were disappointed. Around 10, we were annoyed. At 4am (Atlantic time, we lost a friggin hour!) we were so tired we just wanted to sleep. As a tip for anyone else hoping to make the trip, I suggest two things: First, don't go through the States. Second, don't forget to take into account traffic, stopping for gas + food, and speed limits dropping to 25 mph. Fuck!

We stopped in St. John, NB, to eat, and found a place called King of Donair. What's a Donair? As far as I can tell, it's a Gyro with a fancy name. They put in on a pizza, and it tastes delicious!

To pass the time, we listened to the stand-up comedy of Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock, some crappy guy whose name I don't remember, and Bill Cosby. Shaun destroyed Chin in Tetris. We tried to figure out how to play Bomberman. Anth took a dump. All in all, it was a trip filled with punkage.

The best decision we made: renting a GPS unit from Avis for our trip. GPS is like Gandalf the grey. TeamID could not get lost even if we tried, thanks to the GPS, but more so because Jon wasn't around riding shotgun and fucking shit up. Speaking of people that didn't make the trip, y'all got punked hardcore! That's what you get!

Our hotel, the Courtyard Marriott, was right by the water, and walking distance to everything in downtown Halifax. Well, that's not so impressive when you figure that downtown Halifax is only 7 blocks wide. The room was swanky, and felt very new.

Next: Our day of sightseeing

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Laptop hard drive upgrade

For the last few months, I've been down to my last 10GB on my ghetto 80GB hard drive. I bought a 500GB drive, placed it in an enclosure, and archived everything that I didn't need day-to-day. Still, the drive space filled up with more stuff (music, pictures, video, etc.). It felt like the days of the 286, when I ran MS-DOS doublespace to increase my 20MB HD to 40 megs. Oh snap!

I really needed a bigger internal HD. So I started by going to Best Buy and asking this 18 year old lackey how much it would cost to have someone create a disk image and install a new drive. He quoted me something crazy, like $300. What the fuck? You can tell your whole geek squad to take their pocket protectors, turn them sumbitches sideways, and shove them up their candy asses! (ahh, The Rock)

So I held off until I found this artcle on extremetech.com. This gave me all the confidence I needed to crack open my laptop and swap out the hard drive myself. I purchased a 250GB Western Digital HD and a snazzy cool NexStar 2.5" enclosure

After making the disk image using a backup application called Synk, I was ready to start. I had to remove over a dozen screws before I could pop the keyboard:



"See all that stuff inside, Homer? That's why your robot never worked!" It was kinda scary, cuz when I popped the keyboard, it made a sound like I broke something. But everything was still instact (wipes sweat off forehead).

The hard drive was at the bottom left corner:

So I pulled out the paltry 80 gigger (left), and stuck in my new 250 GB monster (right):

I hooked the keyboard back to the motherboard, and decided I should try to boot up before I screwed all these friggin tiny screws back in. Press the power button ... and ... nothing. Oh shit. What the fuck did I just do? It turns out that I jostled the connection loose. Whew. Okay, time to close this patient up. Another successful surgery!

250 Gigs, bitches! Well, 232 formatted, but still ... I got triple the space! It makes my machine run faster, cuz the OS has more virtual memory. Now I can fill it up with even more junk. Let's head to our favourite bit torrent site and download away!

New home update

Yay! the model homes from our builder opened up for one day only to those of us that purchased during phase 1. I brought my camera and took mad pics, cuz we might not get to visit the model again until January.



The beautiful thing is that one of the two models is the Livingston, aka this is how our place is going to look when it's built. We were so excited to actually see how much space we have, instead of trying to envision things through the floorplan.

The good news: The place is fantastic! It has a spacious kitchen, and a huge family room. It's exactly what we were looking for in a layout. So many places have small family rooms, which doesn't make any sense. The computer niche, which joins the kitchen and the laundry room, will be where I put my new Mac when Starcraft II comes out. The master bedroom is about as big as our living room and kitchen combined, back at our downtown condo.

The bad news: The living/dining room wasn't as big as we thought it was in the layout. We're not worried though, we'll probably just make it a really big dining room instead of trying to cram a ton of furniture in there a la Shaun Sequeira. That's about where our disappointment ended, we were in love with everything else!

The ugly news: These fuckers at Arista pimped the shit out of the model home. Hardwood floor throughout, quartz countertop, upgraded cabinets, undermount sinks, upgraded washrooms, upgraded fireplace, upgraded what the fuck! They had potlights everywhere!

I've become more knowledgeable of late as to how much it costs to get a place looking like the model home. And what they've spent on upgrades, we can't afford to spend. But look at the place, it looks so sick! I guess it's off to Home Depot university for me.

Here's a link to my album if you wanted to check it out some more. CathyAl can't wait!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Bravestarr




  • Eyes of Hawk
  • Ears of the Wolf
  • Strength of the Bear
  • Speed of the Puma

Custom License Plates

CathyAl were supposed to get a custom license plate for Ruby the red Civic. But it's kinda expensive, and nobody looks forward to standing in that long ass Ministry of Transportation lineup at Square One. Sigh.

Maybe it's for the best. Most of the custom license plates I've seen have been one of two things. Either they are cryptic in nature, something that you attempt to decipher like you're a contestant on Bumper Stumpers, sometimes risking your life as you become completely oblivious to trivial things like, say, the car in front of you ... OR ... They are lame.

Take, for instance, the GNULINUX plate that I found on Google Images. Or the GOAN license plate that I used to see during my Go Train days. Or WARHMMR, a custom plate that I saw on the QEW one day, which doubled as affirmation that the 40-year old virgin could very well be based on a true story.

I have seen some cool custom plates, however. No Shaun, I'm not talking about RSXXXY. On more than one occasion, I've seen 22TWOS, a really cool reference to a Jay-Z song by the same name from his first album. Or a warning that the driver has 20 .22 calibre pistols in his car.

What kind of cool custom license plates have you seen?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

MGS4 -- I'm friggin pumped!

Check this out! It's a trailer from TGS for Metal Gear Solid 4.

It's all in Japanese, I don't understand what the heck they're saying. Where's Chris/Alison/Rosie when you need them! It doesn't matter though, between the totally amazing CG, the pop drinking monkey, Sisqo's guest appearance, and the presence of Metal Gear Rex AND Metal Gear Ray, I understood what Konami was trying to communicate. They were telling me, "Yo, buy this fucking game!"

I read some of the comments at the bottom of the page after watching the video, and I really gotta stop doing that. The comments section of a high traffic blog usually amounts to ignorant people saying ignorant things. Splinter Cell is better than Metal Gear? Are you kidding me!?!?

Anyways, Metal Gear Solid 4. Just tell me where to sign!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I can't wait no more!

If I waited for Shaun to make a Last Supper picture, I'd already be with Jesus. So I took my below-average Photoshop skills and made this. Enjoy.

Monday, September 03, 2007

"North Carolina, come on and raise up..."

"...Take your shirt off, and wave in the air just like a helicopter"
- Petey Pablo

For those that don't recognize the lyrics, don't worry, the song wasn't that good, and Petey was a one-hit wonder. Anyways .... I'm back! My one week off was quite the relaxing retreat, and I feel recharged. Our accommodations came courtesy of Cathy's uncle, who owns a beautiful beachfront condo on Emerald Isle. We were kissing the Atlantic Ocean. Our typical day consisted of eating, sleeping, swimming, and shopping. Done.

Highlights of the trip:
  • Wal-Mart! We must have made 4 trips to the Supercenter in Jacksonville, and I came out buying something every time! What is it about a US Wal-Mart that makes it so damn attractive? I found Arnold Schwarzenneger movies in the $5 bin. Total Recall, The Running Man, and even T2! And I bought Chappelle's show season 2. I'm Rick James Bitch!
  • We stuck Cathy's cousin in a shopping cart, padded the cart with pillows, gave her a bike helmet, and then proceeded to smash stuff all around the store. Displays, other carts, it was great.
  • I took a picture on my phone of a sign just outside one of the shopping malls. "No Weapons Allowed"
  • There was so much propoganda it made me sick. There were highway billboards with American flags and the message, "In God we Trust. United We Stand." It wasn't advertising for the army. It wasn't a presidential slogan. It was just a sign on the highway. I saw American flags for sale at Wal-Mart. I saw a bumper sticker on a car that read, "Not a single southern state voted for Kerry." The lady swimming at the pool had a floating bed with an American flag pattern. Two of them.
  • We had no net access, and I had to resort to walking around the condo with my laptop fishing for a wireless connection, so I could check for new notifications on Facebook. Yes, I am pathetic.
  • I saw dolphins
  • My wife's cousin got so drunk, he fell on the toilet and split his face open in two spots. I, also being drunk, slept through all the hoopla and only found out in the morning.
Thanks to my wife's family. It was fun! Let's do it again next year!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

I jumped out of a fucking airplane

On Saturday, my friends and I drove up to Cookstown, and a little place called Skydive Toronto. You might be asking yourself, "Why would you go to a place called Skydive Toronto?" If you did, you're really dense.

Our trip was born out of a pact. A promise between friends that we would experience the feeling of jumping from an airplane before we turned 30. My friend Jay Tse jumped two years ago, and allegedly asked me if I wanted to come. Last year, we put it off, either out of laziness or I-don't-have-moneyness. I don't remember.

But this year, there couldn't be any excuses. That's because Jon (the stupid Korean in the back) turns 30 in November. You can't go back on the pact. So I went back to Jay and asked him where he went. Reserved the date, and put a countdown on my blog. 3 ... 2 ... 1 ... Booya! August 18 rolls along, and here we are, harnessed up and ready to do it!

I knew that we'd be asked to sign a waiver, relinquishing our rights to sue in the event of injury and/or death. What we didn't know was that they were going to make us watch a crusty 30 min video from the early 80's. The shit was friggin hilarious! It was hosted by the guy from Idomo, and from the Family Ties dad.

So we suit up, and head out to the airplane. Up to this point, I wasn't nervous at all. the first point I tensed up was when we got into the plane. The shit was held together with duct tape. My estimate was 4 or 5 rolls. If something happens to the plane, at least we have parachutes, right? Well, actually my tandem partner has the parachute, not me. Errr....

The second point of nervousness came at 10,500ft. Thats when the pilot opened the door. I took a peek and could still see the ground. The wind was blowing hard into the cabin. My instructor told me to head for the door, just like we practiced on the ground. I reluctantly moved towards the door, put my hands across my chest in the shape of an X, and waited for him to count us down. "Ready?! ... one ... ". That's when he pushed me. I got pushed out of an airplane!

The first 3 seconds, I think I went numb. We were falling head first. All I remember was seeing the ground. I don't remember hearing anything, I don't remember feeling anything. Only vision. I've never experienced that before.

After that, we stabilized, and I felt like I was a bird, flying in the air. What an awesome feeling. I hammed it up for the camera a bit, probably longer then I should have, because when I first checked my altimeter, we were already at 7000 ft, only 1000 ft from the point when we were supposed to deploy the chute. Damn, we've already been in freefall for about 20 seconds?!

So, while training on the ground, we were taught how to find the parachute ripcord. When I got the signal from my tandem partner, I did what remembered. It should be somewhere just above his hip. My hand was flailing around, but I couldn't find it. Uhhh, this kinda sucks. I hope my tandem partner is going to pull this thing, cuz I'm sorta starting to panic.

The second half of this skydiving experience, the slow flight down under the canopy, was almost as amazing as the freefall. Who the fuck am I kidding, it was nowhere near as amazing! But it was still cool.

When we landed on the ground, the videographer rushed in for my reaction of the dive. I had all this wicked shit planned. I was going to brush the dirt off my shoulder, smirk at the camera, and tell him it "ain't no thang". I was going to tell Shaun that he missed out. It was going to be wicked. But that's not what happened. I was stunned. I was shell shocked. I stuttered and mumbled. I'm actually kinda scared to see my video, I'm probably going to look and sound really stupid.

You can see my pictures here. Thanks to Joe, my tandem partner, Peter, my videographer, and everyone else at Skydive Toronto. TeamID, we did it! Well, except for Shaun and the wife. Y'all missed out! This experience was so sick, I guarantee that I'll be back for another jump. If you haven't been skydiving before, I recommend it!

--- Living is overrated underrated tour 2K7 ---