Blazers Vs. The Sign Vigilantes

Posted in Basketball at 5:06 pm by

The Oregonian’s John Canzano on the city of Portland’s edict that the Blazers remove a 128-foot by 60-foot vinyl banner from a steel grain silo across the street from the Rose Garden :

Attaching the banner in a way that no sign had been attached to the silo before is what city electrical inspectors term a “structural alteration,” which is why the NBA franchise has been notified that it must remove the sign by Feb. 8 or pay a $100-per-day fine.

Understand, Blazers owner Paul Allen has attempted, unsuccessfully, on various occasions to purchase this silo. He owns the riverfront land adjacent to the structure, and the people who work for him are exploring uses for the land. But the Blazers’ primary use for the grain silo, to date, is to carry the hopeful message of the franchise.

Now, it’s carrying a broader question: Portland really is a strange place, isn’t it?

City sign inspectors don’t drive around looking for non-compliant signs, see. In fact, even if a sign doesn’t meet regulations, the inspectors usually won’t issue a directive to remove the sign unless a citizen complains about it by telephone, e-mail or fax.

Which means that some careful citizen, probably one driving on Interstate 5, looked over, saw the team’s “Rise With Us” sign dangling from the silo and decided having the sign removed was a worthwhile cause.

Said John Hauck, a senior inspector: “We have what you’d call a few sign vigilantes who, if something doesn’t appear to be within the law, call us and complain.”

For those about to sneer, “get a life”, rest assured one can be a concerned member of the community and also maintain a very rich cultural existence.

SNY’s Pending 3-Headed Monster

Posted in Sports Radio, Sports TV at 3:40 pm by

Newsday’s Neil Best, for a moment neglecting Joe Buck’s claim that he’s not got a scripted anti-Randy Moss rant at the ready, drops the following tidbit into your afternoon consomme :

I’m hearing SNY is planning some sort of new show (and/or shows) that likely will feature Joe Benigno (above), Scott Ferrall and Chris Carlin, who have become regular personalities on the station.

“I’m hearing” is a cool-sounding way of passing along (well-informed) whispers and making it sound insider-ish.

I hate to take issue with Mr. Watchdog, but there’s nothing “regular” about Joe Benigno-Gazingo’s personality.

Carton would be well advised to steer clear of the gig. He’s already carrying Boomer Esiason Kim Jones on his back 5 mornings a week, and any program that would pair Benigno and Scott Ferrall is doomed. If the former’s face doesn’t terrify SNY viewers, increased exposure to the latter’s voice should do the trick.

We’ll Not See A Finer Commercial Sunday Evening

Posted in Beer, History's Not Happening, The Marketplace at 2:42 pm by

I mean no disrespect to Tommy Heinsohn when stating the above advertisement represents his finest televised moment.

The Author Of The Paragraph Below Will Not Be Speaking At The 2008 EMP Pop Conference

Posted in Blogged Down, Gridiron, record collector disease at 1:25 pm by

(photo by Eve Prime)

Let’s see if CSTB’s savvy readers can identify which great thinker was responsible for this :

The Super Bowl stinks because the halftime show always highlights someone who personifies everything that football isn’t ” melodic and graceful. Football is violent. Is it too much to ask that the music match the visuals? Prince, Justin Timberlake and Tom Petty are all talented artists, but in a game that can end with ruptured spleens, torn ligaments and concussions, I would like to hear an appropriate tune. Maybe some Pantera? How about some Maiden? What could be a better setting for an NWA reunion? Minus Eazy, of course.

was it…

a) Colin Cowherd
b) Rob Dibble
c) Jay Mohr
d) Stephen Merritt
e) none of the above?

No Googling!

The Fiver Takes The Name Of Soccer Dog In Vain

Posted in Football at 11:47 am by

The Guardian’s Tom Lutz and Barney Ronay have duly noted Manchester City’s attempts obtain a work permit for Iraqi midfielder Nashat Akram (above), and take a somewhat dim view of a politician lobbying on the club’s behalf.

Now, some people say Tony Blair didn’t have a plan after he conqu … liberated Iraq but he did and it goes a little something like this:

1. Conqu … liberate Iraq.
2. Leave 38 soldiers with no equipment in charge of country riddled with religious and ethnic tension.
3. Give soldiers berets instead of helmets to show locals how friendly they are.
4. Um…
5. Ask God to sort it out, if he has time.
6. If God is busy, dress Danielle Lloyd as a racy Santa and send her out to cheer up soldiers when locals get picky about lack of electricity, water, security, medical facilities, Sunday repeats of Heartbeat etc.
7. Um…

But at long last, it looks like the British government is trying to solve the whole mess through football. Not, as you might be hoping, by sending Soccer Dog as a negotiator in a tri-partite meeting between Sunnis, Shias and Kurds, but by getting Human Rights FC to sign Nashat Akram. Unfortunately, Akram’s work permit has been refused and cuddly Labour MP Keith Vaz – who voted for military action in Iraq, by the way – ain’t happy. “I shall be calling on the home secretary to review this decision,” he harrumphed, waving some important-looking papers about. “Here we have someone who wants to come and work legitimately, a role model for his country, whose presence here can heal divisions in Iraq.”

Now the Fiver is all for Akram coming to Britain, but wouldn’t it be better if the country didn’t have to rely on a deal backed by money from Thaksin Shinawatra – a man accused of human rights abuses by all kinds of NGOs – to salve its conscience? Soccer Dog hasn’t worked for a while, come to think of it.

Disco Inferno : The Murderous Musical Taste Of The KOOP Arsonist

Posted in Radio, Rock Und Roll, The Law at 11:25 am by

Boing Boing’s Xeni Jardin has discovered KOOP has yet to remove playlists from their site compiled by the station’s accused firestarter Paul Webster Feinstein.

I don’t wanna go on a Whitlock-esque rant implying there’s a cultural connection between Feinstein’s musical favorites and his criminal activity. Many of this blog’s readers can enjoy the recordings of R.L. Burnside and Captain Beefheart without setting a building ablaze.

However, I do believe social crusaders, pop psychologists and the local District Attorney alike should have a field day with Feinstein’s tendency to play the works of Mother 13 frontdude Corey Harris. At the very least, it might be time for a picket line in front of Harris’ label offices.

Making It Rain With Floyd Mayweather

Posted in Blogged Down, Boxing at 11:00 am by

Nyjer Please bulk forwarded a link earlier today to some bullshit video of Tony Romo getting screechy with Metal Skool (can someone please kill those guys before the inevitable Rob Dibble appearance?), but the real gem at TMZ.com is footage of Floyd Mayweather tossing crazy money around (“with some boxer named Zab Judah” — they really know their sweet science at TMZ) at a lame Vegas nightspot. At one point, Mayweather is said to throw $5K into the air.

A bit of a cliché, really. Though in defense of Pretty Boy Floyd, no one busted out a phone cam when I did the same thing last Sunday night at Donn’s Depot.

Zeke’s Latest Delusion : Knicks To Pursue Kidd

Posted in Basketball at 7:01 am by

Rather than dwell on Sasha Vujacic’s 12 point 4th quarter outburst in the Knicks’ 120-109 loss last night to the Lakers, consider the most recent ill-advised public statement from Isiah Thomas, as collected by the New York Post’s Marc Berman :

A day after saying he had “no superstars,” Knick coach Isiah Thomas said he will ask the Nets what it would take to land the on-the-block Jason Kidd.

The Nets have been forever looking for a big center, and Eddy Curry could be involved in a potential deal, possibly along with Renaldo Balkman, whom the Nets like.

Kidd’s bombshell that it’s time to move on traveled to L.A., where the Lakers, too, should have interest again.

“I think our business is to find out,” Thomas said. “When players are on the market, you try to find out. You have to be interested. You have to look.”

With Stephon Marbury likely out of future plans, Thomas considers Kidd among the game’s elite point guards despite Kidd’s age – he turns 35 on March 23.

Of LeBron James’ hopes to be paired with Kidd, True Hoop‘s Henry Abbott writes, “it’s not at all clear that the Cavalier organization wants a highly paid non-shooter on the downslope of his career, especially when it’s sure to cost valuable assets. As much as the team wants to be competitive now, they also really need to be competitive in the summer of 2010, when LeBron James will be a free agent.”

So of course, it would make plenty of sense for Isiah Thomas — whose team will not be confused with the defending Conference champs on many nights — to covet a highly paid, aging non-shooter…who will pass the ball to who, precisely?  Shouldn’t the Knicks be looking ahead to James’ and D-Wade’s free agency as well?


Paging Nigella Lawson : ‘Sheed In Cake Form

Posted in Basketball, Blogged Down, Food at 9:14 pm by

Pistons forward Rasheed Wallace contributed a double-double to Detroit’s 110-104 victory over Indiana earlier tonight, but more importantly, he’s been immortalized (sort of)….as a cake (link taken from where else, Need For ‘Sheed)

I’m particularly impressed with the culinary skills of Francesca Falchieri, especially in light of my own feeble attempts to produce a curry that resembled Eddy Curry.

Following his recent trade request, it’s foolish to think PG Jason Kidd would begin to sabotage the New Jersey Nets.  If we’re to believe the New York Post’s Peter Vecsey, Kidd had already started doing so.

From everything I’m hearing, no trades are pending, but management feels it may be forced into making the best one as soon as all the bids are in, particularly with regards to Kidd, whose heart and head aren’t into competing for an inferior team.

This was never more clear than at the tail end of the Nyets’ pathologically pathetic 98-95 loss to Minny Ha-Ha on Sunday, whom they led, 95-88, with 1:19 left on the clock.

Granted, Jason Collins, a 35-percent free-throw shooter, shouldn’t have been part of the offense at the time. So what does Kidd do? He compounds Lawrence Frank’s fracture by delivering a pass to Jason Collins, who immediately was fouled by Al Jefferson. Collins appled the first free throw and gagged the second.

You expect a bonehead decision like that from a rookie or a journeyman reject, certainly not from a guy reputed to be among the five smartest point guards of all time.

That play said it all to me. Either Kidd was trying to show up Frank or he was making it obvious to owner Bruce Ratner and team president Rod Thorn they’re wasting precious time and wins.

In Kidd’s defense, he had 11 assists in Tuesday’s 87-80 home win over Mllwaukee, none of ‘em thrown in the direction of Collins (0 points and no shots in 11 minutes)

Wilbon Stricken – Maxim Super Bowl Party Said To Be Unaffected

Posted in Sports Journalism, Sports TV at 7:58 pm by

In all seriousness, here’s wishing for a very speedy recovery for the Washington Post’s Michael Wilbon, who reportedly underwent an angioplasty on Sunday in Arizona. Regardless of your feelings for Wilbon, if you consider that Dan Le Batard is a mere heartbeat away from being Tony Kornheiser’s daily foil on “PTI”, right now is a very appropriate time to say a silent prayer of thanks for advances in modern medicine.