Super Bowl Week: Nobody Knows Anything About Your Team
Jan 31st, 2010 by Ice Cream Jonsey

I had intended to write one column about the history of the New Orleans Saints for the two weeks leading up to the Super Bowl. Well, I have a lot of good intentions. So, in a nutshell – they lost a playoff game up 20-7 to the Philadelphia Eagles once – by a final score of 36-20… and they drafted like shit a bunch of times. I think we’re caught up!

I never really knew how little the rest of the world knows about YOUR football team. They don’t know shit, though! The entire concept of the NFL “expert” or commentator is laughable. I know The Onion just did a headline about this, and then expanded it with 500 tedious words, but I can’t think of another side industry that has unlikeable people speaking with authority on subjects they know little about and still getting everything constantly wrong.  Quick, name an NFL analyst you REALLY like. Odds are everyone you know hates that guy, or the dude sent cellphone pics of his cock to somebody. Possib- probably both.

This really revealed itself when discussions led to Reggie Bush. Now granted, I’m fairly fascinated with the arc of Reggie Bush’s career. He’s the most exciting player ever to wear black and gold. He has been the only player in NFL history to consistently amaze me with what he is able to do on the field, to get me out of my seat. When he’s been out for a few games, the real loss is the pleasure of watching him work. He’s oftentimes a superhero out there. He’s also made some of the worst decisions I’ve ever seen someone make at their job, and he has never been able to consistently string a series of amazing games together. But I’ve seen every single play of his professional career. There isn’t anything anyone can tell me about him as a Saint that I don’t already know. What’s alarming is that there isn’t anyone in the sports media who can tell you anything accurate about him either.

As bad as it’s been this year, it must have been even worse when the Arizona Cardinals made the Super Bowl last season. I think I’ve seen them play maybe … seven or eight times in my entire life? This includes when they were in St. Louis. And somehow I don’t think the crew of NFL Live – at least the on-air talent – is going back to review anything before speaking from a position of false knowledge. I guess I don’t even really expect them to, but having never heard so many people talk about my favorite football team before, it’s a bit amusing to see how much they get wrong. It’s like being let into a secret club (well, not entirely secret, but fans of the Browns, Lions, Jags and Texans are where I was a couple weeks ago) but the shibboleth to secret entry is knowing fuck-all about anything. If I ever meet an Arizona Cardinals fan, it’s something I’ll wish to discuss.

I’d like to write more, but I just got a call about appearing in the Pro Bowl, and frankly, I don’t have anything else going on. It’s a good thing there’s labor peace, a salary cap in place and no plans to move the draft to a Thursday or anything next year, since it would be a little worrying if the new and terrible commissioner had a chance to ruin those things as well. Enjoy the Super Bowl! Baseball got a lot more interesting after it changed things up in 94 just like football will.

Moments in Saints History: Mike Ditka’s First Draft
Jan 26th, 2010 by Ice Cream Jonsey

In celebration of the New Orleans Saints going to their first Super Bowl, we’ll be discussing moments in Saints history for the next two weeks.

You may remember Mike Ditka and Bill Kuharich’s last draft for the New Orleans Saints. They traded their entire draft to the Washington Redskins, so the Skins could draft a bunch of shitty players and LaVar Arrington. Well, their first draft was almost as great a comedy of ineptitude.

The Saints had the second overall pick in the draft that year. They had some enormous holes – the offensive line was something the team wanted to address, and I was psyched to see who they’d plug in. Another bookend tackle to go with Willie Roaf would be outstanding. Or possibly a lockdown corner in Shawn Springs. Great players were going to be available.

Lofty players.

The Saints got none of them, instead trading down with Oakland. Don’t get me wrong, Oakland fucked up too (they took the late Darrell Russell) but rather than stay at #2 and draft Walter Jones, Ditka and Kuharich lock up guard Chris Naeole. Chris Naeole! Who trades down to lock up a fucking guard? LeCharles Bentley was a greater player in every respect (until his knee got Clevelanded) and he went in the second. How bad was this pick? Before dying, Darrell Russell still made the Pro Bowl. And then he died. And was / is still inarguably a better player than Naeole.

Chris Naeole eventually went on to be a serviceable guard for Jacksonville. The rest of the draft sucked for the Saints, too: Rob Kelly, Jared Tomich, Troy Davis, Danny Wuerffel – look, I had heard of Troy Davis and Danny Wuerffel. They had amazing college careers. I think they both ought to go to the college football hall of fame. Nobody in professional football ought to be drafting all the players from the NCAA that I’ve heard of.

Ditka didn’t wear a dreadlocked wig for this draft, but his inability to get a single impact player after a 3-13 season was really why he was fired after just three seasons.

New Orleans 31, Minnesota 28, OT
Jan 24th, 2010 by Ice Cream Jonsey

I’m house-sitting for Benjamin “Pinback” Parrish and he and his lovely girlfriend have an amazing high-definition television. I watched the game with four dogs (Boomer, Harley, Jango and Parker), two cats (Sam and Girl Cat) and two spiders (The Destroyer of All Souls and Oo-Topos-Tupperware). I’d never seen a game on such a nice TV.

I was watching without a spine when the Vikings had the ball for their last drive in regulation. Kickers have been so unpredictable, who knows what Longwell coul- OH MY GOD! MY GOD! HE THREW IT TO PORTER! GO! GO GO!~!!

Overtime was an unwatchable mess, the officials deigning to take three booth reviews they didn’t overturn. WTF was happening to the offense? (The Vikes’ D is just that good.) Pitch to Bush – nooo! A bailout call on a ball Dave Thomas couldn’t have caught to make up for some of the nonsense earlier. And then… Garrett Hartley to line up for a field goal.

It all comes down to this.

My brother called to tell me how miserable the booth reviews were. Three of them in overtime, none of them overturned anything. I asked him if he’d stay on the phone with me until the field goal attempt. The network showed a highlight from a few weeks ago, where owner Tom Benson celebrated what he thought was a successful kick as time expired against Tampa Bay. My brother thought that was uproariously funny. (Brief aside, I celebrated a kick John Carney attempted in the Superdome against the Patriots while I was there. The angles are weird in person.)

My brother said that the Vikings would call a timeout to ice Hartley. They did so. I thought he was just making a prediction.

Hartley lined up to kick and apparently the feed my brother had was a few seconds ahead of me. He started freaking out on the phone. He chortled. (He’s a chortler.) “RIGHT DOWN THE MIDDLE!!!!”

And then I saw it unfold, in front of me. Garrett Hartley made a 40-yard kick – New Orleans 31, Minnesota 28. My phone started blowing up. Greg called. The Milker called. Fodge, Pinback called. Texts came in, from Gerrit and Brew and Roody. My phone told me I had e-mail as well. I always had the impression that I was the token Saints fan among everyone I’ve ever met.

I can’t believe he made that kick.

As I said before, I was able to catch a game in the Superdome this season – it was my first experience there. I wrestled for a week to try to talk about the experience, but ultimately, I just couldn’t process everything that happened. The football team in that city means more to the people living in it than any other fanbase I’ve ever been around. When Brew and I walked into a casino for an hour, all the dealers had Saints jerseys on. There was a veritable, palpable playoff atmosphere to the Patriots game. Brew used to work for ESPN, and as such, was able to get us free tickets – that was all well and good, but I was also able to get a tiny bit of information from his friends and former co-workers that were around both teams. Having even the slightest bit of “inside info” was great – I got to chill in the same hotel the Saints were staying at, and I saw Mark Brunell and Charles Grant before the game.

(I also lost my Reggie Bush jersey on the trolley, but that’s this whole other thing. Some little whodat had a terrible Christmas, as the thing was faded into ridiculousness. BUT STILL.)

It’s about an hour after the game at this point, and I think I’ve calmed down. My mom called, mostly because she’s my mom and it’s Sunday, but also because she, more than anyone else, knows what it’s been like for me to engage in this ridiculousness for 30+ years. She and my dad took me to a game where I glomped onto the “wrong” team, and every single Christmas – years before you could order this crap off the Internet – she would order up Saints jerseys and shirts and hats and pennants from Louisiana, to get it all here before Christmas. Brew and I walked into the Black & Gold shop before the Saints/Pats game, and I am pretty sure it was one of her go-to stores when I was a teenager. I bought a Robert Meachem jersey and JESUS CHRIST, I have no idea where mom and dad got the money for this (waves hands) ANY of this when I was a kid. They really were the best parents ever. I mean, not just because they got their weird, dorky kid his out-of-state football stuff… but it sort of speaks volumes about them, all told.

Mom asked if I was crying afterwards. I definitely choked up when she asked that, but honestly, not because of anything that happened on the football field.

EDIT: One last thing regarding Brett Favre. Favre is terrible at being a celebrity. The constant coverage of him makes me hate this hobby a great deal. Hearing Kornheiser bring him up two years ago during a Packers/Saints game, with him nowhere near that game ranks high in the halls of the worst sportscasting ever. His ads for Sears trying to humanize him make me despise that smug prick even more. HOWEVER, I would want to work as hard at my job as that son of a bitch does at his. It was the gutsiest performance I’ve ever seen. Everytime I thought he was through, he got right back up again. What an inspiration. I don’t think he’s got a fan left in the world after betraying Green Bay and his last throw for three straight franchises being an interception, but he’s got guts. We should all work that hard.

Necrotic Drift v1.03
Jan 13th, 2010 by Ice Cream Jonsey

Alex Gray as Jarrett Duffy

Alex Gray as Jarrett Duffy

I fixed a Linux bug in Necrotic Drift. You can get the latest version here. There’s no gameplay changes. Well, unless you were trying to play it in Linux (you might get farther now). Get v1.03 here:

If you need the Hugo interpreter, I’d try here:

Or maybe Mike Snyder’s site here:

Food Pinback Could Eat Everyday: The Philly Cheesesteak
Jan 13th, 2010 by Pinback


Look at that picture above. That’s the banner for the website of South Philly Cheesesteaks, a chain of cheesesteak jernts which is so far and away better than any so-called “authentic philly cheesesteak” place in town, and in almost every other town I’ve ever lived in, that it’s really shameful any other place would dare call themselves authentic. Or, you know, “good”.

I have been there many a-time. I introduced Robb Sherwin to this place, and he was kind enough to agree that it makes every other cheesesteak place in town appear to be peddling twelve-inch, foil-wrapped tubes of hog feces.

But I got to thinking. Might there be an easy way to make a South Philly Cheesesteak cheesesteak at home? Might there be an easy way to make it cheaper? And just as good? Might there even be a way to make it… better?

Friends, join me on our quest. Our quest… for cheap, easy, awesome, homemade cheesesteaks!

STEP 1!!! Swallow your pride, put in some heavy-duty earplugs to shield you from the din of screaming children, go to a WalMart that has groceries in it, and get a box of THIS:

STEP 2!!! While you’re there, pick up a yellow/brown onion (not pictured), and a jar of THIS:

If you’d rather use some other type of cheese, substitute that here, but I’ve tried ’em all, and nothing comes close to the tangy goodness of Whiz, in the context of cheesesteaks. The rest of this recipe assumes you’ve made the right choice, assumes you’ve made the Whiz choice.

STEP 3!!! Get the rolls.

This is the only hard part. You’re gonna need those Amoroso rolls. Now, my local South Philly, you ask ’em for a six-pack of 8″ rolls, and they’ll give ’em to ya for a couple bucks. That’s the only/easiest way I’ve found to get a hold of ’em. If you have no luck with that, and like me, haven’t found a way to order them online, you may have to bite the bullet and substitute some other kinda roll. You’re looking for a roll with a light, but still crispy, crust, and a nice spongy, chewy inside. I haven’t found a suitable substitute, but maybe your local bakery can hook you up.

STEP 4!!! Make the cheesesteak, and you do that by doing this:

4a. Turn your oven or toaster on low, low heat and put the roll in there so it can warm while you’re making the rest of it.

4b. Chop up a quarter of the onion and saute it in a little olive oil until soft. Set aside.

4c. Open that WALMART MEAT. You will find what looks like little sirloin patties. But they are not! They are finely sliced and chopped bits of sirloin pressed together and frozen to look like sirloin patties! Holy fuck! Take TWO of the patties and cook, following the directions. Basically you throw the patties into a hot pan, flip after a couple minutes, and then they start to fall apart into instant cheesesteak awesomeness. Best invention ever? I say AYE.

4d. When meat’s about done, throw in the onion, and a heapin’, HEAPIN’ tablespoon (or two) of Cheez Whiz. As you stir it around for the next minute or two, it will melt and everything in the pan will start to coagulate into a gooey, Cheez-y, meaty fucking mess.

4e. Scoop the fucking mess into the roll.

You are now ready to have the BEST GODDAMN CHEESESTEAK YOU WILL EVER EAT, and a food that I, personally, could eat every day:

My Reaction to the Roy Halladay Trade
Jan 3rd, 2010 by Ice Cream Jonsey

It’s been a few weeks and I am sane again. I’ve noticed that Phillies fans seem mostly unable to come to grips with their good fortune. So allow me to address you… directly.

Roy might very well put together a sub-1.00 ERA for the first half of the season in your garbage league.

You guys share a division with the Nats. (Christ, if only one of J.P.’s teams could have gone to the NL for a single fucking year.) He might very well no-hit the Nationals… twice. Actually, Roy could no-hit the Nats twice in a home series on zero days rest and I would only be marginally surprised. How do any of you lose to them in the first place? Do you only get to dress seven guys? Six guys and a dog?

‘WAAARGH he might get hurt!’ Halladay missed part of a season because Kevin Mench hit him in the leg. Since it was so unlikely that Mench would make contact in the first place, Mench actually striking Roy was logical, because 1 x infinity = infinity. Roy also had his appendix taken out, because – as the one part of his person not contributing towards a Cooperstown plaque – it did the honorable thing and left.

He also missed time last year due to a sore groin, which he acquired skullfucking the entire AL East by himself. You may remember the AL East from the time you got a cheap WS by playing a team in the snow that we’ve all literally beaten 190 times in 10 years, and then time they sent you home because you were too stupid to acquire Roy at the deadline last year.

You’re getting the best pitcher in baseball for some of your prospects that you’d all just boo to tears anyway. (You’re on your own with the Cliff Lee thing, though since Rosenthal wrote his column in such a bitchtits way, without admitting he had a source, it basically looks like your GM was inspired by his terrible column and did what he said, which, hahaha, well good luck!)

Anyway, thanks again for the prospects, and we’ll see you all again in six years when our terrible ownership suddenly can’t find the money to extend any of them, because they’re among the worst North Americans in human history.

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