Sunday, July 26, 2009

Why use twitter?

I remember when I first signed up for Twitter, I used it for all of five minutes, and then gave up.

"I don't get it."

It seemed to just be the exact same thing as Facebook status updates, except with a 140-character limit. All of the other cool ways to interact with friends on Facebook, they don't exist on Twitter. Nope, all you do is update your status message.

"That's it?"

It wasn't until months later that I realized Twitter's advantages:
- I can follow updates for anyone I want on Twitter. This differs from Facebook, where friend requests need to be approved before updates/pictures/etc. are visible. So, if you want to see what Olivia Munn is up to, you can. A recent tweet reads: "holy crap my custom leia robe was short!". Now that's news, people!

- The character limit makes surfing through updates digestible. There are a few of my Facebook friends (whom I will leave anonymous) that write freakin essays. I've learned to keep scrolling, my ghetto method of filtering crap. 140 Characters has a way of mandating that you get to the fucking point.

- News can potentially come faster on Twitter than any other source. Example 1: Jon Favreau (director of Iron Man 2) letting everyone know: "We just wrapped principal photography." Example 2: Eric Smith (Toronto Raptors radio personality) tell us " Just got off the phone w/ Anthony Parker. He confirmed that he is signing w/ CLE. Says he loves Toronto and will miss Toronto".

- It does a damn good job killing time. You bored? Tweet about something. Or find out what others are tweeting about. I can stand in any-sized lineup, as long as my iPhone has battery life (and as long as people are tweeting).

- There are plenty of tools out there that let you simultaneously post to Twitter and Facebook, or selectively post to either site. Nice!

Don't have a Twitter account? Get one ... it's Lil Lex approved! And then follow me: @atorreno

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Just give me my bubble tea!

Just got back from Ribfest at city hall with Shauny + watching a cam version of The Hangover at Shaun's place. If you haven't watched The Hangover yet, I highly recommend it (but not the cam version, that's rough times).

Anyways, my story is not about the absolutely delicious pulled pork sandwich, or about Shaun laying out blankets on his couch (so that we don't get them dirty), or about the hilariousness of The Hangover. It's about ridiculous people working at Bubble Republic.

The wife and I had a craving for bubble tea, so we headed over to Bubble Republic. When you place a take out order there, they ask you for your name, and whenever I give any variation of my name (e.g. "Alexis", "Al"), without fail, they ask me to spell it. Y'all don't know how to spell "Al"? For real?

So the plan this time around: Find a name that I think is common enough that they don't ask me to spell it out. C'mon, this ain't the ESPN spelling bee, numbnuts! I just want to give you a name, you write it down, and then call me over when my shit is ready. Got it?

Attempt #1: PING. This is my bubble tea name. Ping. It not only sounds common enough, it's also easy to sound out phonetically.

At least, I thought it was. "How do you spell that?" was what the bubble tea waitress asked me, after I repeated my name twice. Fuck!

Alright, I need a new bubble tea name. Do you have any suggestions?

Reserved optimism

When Bryan Colangelo first stepped in as the Raptors' GM, he overhauled the team and brought in 9 new faces. That team went on to an impressive 47-win season, and Raptor fans praised BC for his basketball genius.

Since then, we've had 41 and 33 win seasons, and haters came out of the woodwork. Instead of "genius", the label du jour was "fraud". Real Raptor fans understood the real issues (The loss of Garbajosa, Bargnani's slow development, Jermaine O'neal's health issues), but not-so-real "Raptor fans" wanted a stage to stroke their egos. Yes, the Raptors are losing, and that probably makes you happy. Yes, BC made mistakes, and that also makes you happy. Congratulations. Hopefully, your wife/girlfriend will leave you soon, and you'll get laid off from your job at McDonald's, and you'll be right about that too.


Last off-season there was talk about a deep run in the playoffs. It was an extremely exciting time. Our 3-0 start removed any doubt from our minds: This was our year! Sadly, our high expectations fell hard, like that "the bigger they are" cliche (mental note, figure out the keyboard shortcut for adding an e accent acute). There was a bad taste in everyone's mouth, the same taste that you get after reading a Dave Feschuk article.

This summer, BC has pulled off the near-impossible. 5 new Raptors, a possible sixth (Jarrett Jack) coming soon, and rumblings about some familiar faces coming back (Nesterovic, Delfino). Haven't been keeping up? Shame on you. Please stop reading my blog post and move on to something that might interest you more, like the custody battle over Michael Jackson's kids (see my previous blog post).

But it's important to remember what happened last season, so that we don't repeat our delusions of grandeur. I only expect improvement over last season, and nothing more. I expect DeMar DeRozen to come off the bench, and to make a lot of mistakes. I expect him to sprinkle in some sick dunks along the way. I expect Jose Calderon to be consistent throughout the entire season. I expect Hedo Turkoglu to put up the same numbers as last season, not to be our saviour. I expect Reggie Evans to not grab Chris Kaman's nuts anymore.

Lastly, I expect haters to shut their mouths. Is that too much to ask?

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Spewing hate

I can't stand when people start sentences with the word "basically." Am I stupid? Do you really need to dumb it down for me to understand?

I like watching old Michael Jackson videos. I hate watching news about the Jackson custody battle. Don't watch that shit, it's poison for your brain.

I hate "Raptor fans" that want to bitch and whine 24/7.

I hate people that misuse the word "literally." It doesn't mean what you think. "I literally jumped 50 feet in the air" ... No, you didn't.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Mowing the lawn

I hate mowing the lawn. It's not only expensive to own and maintain a lawn mower, but it's also time-consuming and laborious to go out in the sun and push the stupid thing around. I've got better things to do, like read about Hedo Turkgolu coming to Toronto (which, by the way, I'm not totally sold on).

I had to mow the lawn today for the first time. I now know what's waiting for me when I get to hell. I'll be mowing a small stretch of grass, and then I'll need to stop. Pull the bag out, empty it, place it back. Start the motor -- it's jammed. Clear the blade, start the motor again. repeat. repeat. repeat.

The recent excess of rainfall didn't make this task any easier. It took me 3 freaking hours! Guess how many yard bags I filled with grass. Go ahead.