08.31.16

Sending Thor A Copy Of ‘No New York’ For Early Xmas

Posted in Baseball, Mob Behavior at 6:37 pm by

Abdul-Jabbar : Kaepernick Detractors Are Picking The Wrong Fight

Posted in Basketball, Gridiron, non-sporting journalism, politics, Racism Corner at 6:21 pm by

Without question one of the all-time NBA greats turned-comedic-powerhouse/TV critic/social commentator Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has weighed in on Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand for “The Star Spangled Banner”, arguing the Niners QB, “behaved in a highly patriotic manner.” From Monday’s Washington Post :

One of the ironies of the way some people express their patriotism is to brag about our freedoms, especially freedom of speech, but then brand as unpatriotic those who exercise this freedom to express dissatisfaction with the government’s record in upholding the Constitution.

We should admire those who risk personal gain in the service of promoting the values of their country. Both athletes are in fine company of others who have shown their patriotism in unconventional ways. In 1989, when a federal law prohibiting flag desecration went into effect, Vietnam Veterans burned the American flag as a protest to a law curbing the First Amendment. Their argument was that they fought for the freedoms in the Constitution, not a piece of cloth, and to curtail those freedoms was an insult to their sacrifice. Ironically, the original purpose of flag desecration laws between 1897 and 1932 wasn’t to prevent political dissent, but to prevent the use of flag imagery for political campaigns and in advertising.

What should horrify Americans is not Kaepernick’s choice to remain seated during the national anthem, but that nearly 50 years after Muhammad Ali was banned from boxing for his stance and Tommie Smith and John Carlos’s raised fists caused public ostracization and numerous death threats, we still need to call attention to the same racial inequities. Failure to fix this problem is what’s really un-American here.

08.30.16

Another Important Message From The Entertainment Division Of Cumbucket Media : Coming September 30, The Debut LP From Sick Thoughts’ DD Owen

Posted in 12XU, record collector disease, Rock Und Roll at 12:50 pm by

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DD OwenDD Owen (12XU 091-1), out September 30

On the heels of an impressive pile of records under the Sick Thoughts, Chicken Chain and LSDOGS monikers, 19 year old Drew Owen left Baltimore, decamped to New Orleans and recorded his first 12″ under the DD Owen imprimatur, 8 songs that reflect a new-found maturity, songcraft, enhanced production values and deeply sophisticated worldview.

Alright, at least the part about the record being 8 songs long isn’t a total fucking lie.

Features the soon-to-be-smash, “I Shoulda Been Aborted”. The only color vinyl on this one is black. There’s a download card but it’s not like you’re getting into heaven any faster by using it.

Drew’s currently in Finland where Sick Thoughts are touring with Die Rottz. You can catch him at Goner Fest this September and that’s probably a good idea as he’s promised this label there will be no DD Owen tour to speak of after this album hits the streets. Man, the selling points are just falling from the sky like golf-ball sized hail, aren’t they?

In all seriousness, if you’ve heard the previous DD Owen singles for Ken Rock, Windian and Goodbye Boozy not to mention some of Drew’s other sprawling output for folks including but not limited to Goner, Episode Sounds, Total Punk and Slovenly you already know he’s as determined as he’s prolific. Would it be hyperbole to call him the voice of a generation? Perhaps, but if you do a Claude Bessey impersonation while saying it, at the very least you’ll be a hit at parties.

Preorder at 12XU.bigcartel.com or at ddowen12xu.bandcamp.com.

08.29.16

Phil’s Nothing If He’s Not Reliable : Mushnick’s Hatred Of Cespedes Continues Unabated

Posted in Baseball, Sports Journalism at 7:48 pm by

Friday on SNY, Keith Hernandez, who might have chosen to say nothing, and then Ron Darling, chose to tell us what we’ve repeatedly seen and know to be untrue: Yoenis Cespedes is a superb, intelligent base runner.

“Once again, as I’ve said before,” Hernandez said, “he’s the best base runner on this ball club. … He is such a smart player.”

Darling added, “How quick he can throw it into high gear.”

Cespedes, despite abundant slugging and throwing skills, was relegated to expendable by three teams — Oakland, Boston, Detroit — in just two seasons due to his indifferent, minimalist regard for playing team-first, fundamentally winning baseball, including couldn’t-care-less base running.

If you’re keeping score, the above implication that Mets OF Yoenis Cespedes is either lazy or stupid or both, comes on the heels of the New York Post’s Phil Mushnick assailing the former for wearing gold chains, not running on a dropped third strike, and “spending his money on expensive, silly things like pimped-out, three-wheeled sand buggies.” On the charge that Cespedes was deemed all-too-dumpable by his prior MLB club, Mushnick has called him, “so valued he quickly became expendable to three previous teams,”, so at least he’s even bigger on regurgitation than I am.

On the occasions Cespedes manages to beat out an infield hit, Phil, naturally has something else to write about (most likely the temerity of teams on the west coast actually scheduling their games during times in which persons with day jobs can attend them). That Oakland flipped Cespedes for Jon Lester and Detroit did the same for a strong Rookie Of The Year candidate in Michael Fulmer, goes unmentioned. Persons willing to take Mushnick’s grudge at face value might well believe Cespedes is lucky to have a job!

Randy L’s Greatest Hits : “Words Of Advice For Huma Abedin”

Posted in Baseball, politics at 11:00 am by

(EDITOR’s NOTE : from time to time, decorated sports executive / consumer rights advocate Randy L of the Bronx checks in at CSTB to weigh in on the important issues of the day. Upon learning of the most recent sexting revelations surrounding former Rep. Anthony Weiner, Randy offered, nay, demanded we republish the following item from July 23, 2013).

Greetings, fellow lovers of democracy and free expression. I realize we’re living in troubled times and many of you are unsettled when a public figure you’ve invested so much faith in can so casually, so routinely violate your trust. But enough about our disabled third baseman. Instead, I’d like to discuss the controversy swirling around NYC mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner and his lovely wife, Humidor Huma.

I don’t wanna get all puritanical or quasi-religious about this (who do you think I am, Chad Curtis?) but Anthony seems to have made a number of questionable decisions, the likes of which have embarrassed his constituents, his family, his political party, and most importantly, the people who were considering making a sizable financial contribution to his campaign. OK, I’ll get over it, but I’m not sure Weiner will rebound so quickly. Lucky for him, I have all sorts of experience dealing with situations almost as awkward as his, and as such, I’m uniquely qualified to offer guidance. So listen up, Weiner! It’s like you’re getting a free pep talk from Dick Morris, without any of the liabilities!

A successful political campaign is not altogether different from running the world’s most successful professional sports franchise. Both attract their share of obsequious hangers-on, but whether you’re trying to extract yourself from an embarrassing series of correspondence with a woman less than half your age, or you’re simply telling Rudy Guiliani he cannot wear a full Yankee uniform in the dugout, it’s very important to maintain boundaries. When our general manager disgraced the Yankee brand by thinking with his cock rather than his brain, we didn’t allow him to face the cameras in a smug manner, nor was he allowed to parade his long suffering spouse in front of a media gauntlet as a means of seeking sympathy.

Nope, instead with the help of the same Yankee medical staff that so successfully curbed the after-hours self-destructive behaviors of such arrested adolescents as Jason Giambi and David Wells, we prescribed Brian Cashman a powerful daily dose of Depo-Provera. And since he’s been on what I like to call a “PDD” (Performance Destroying Drug), not only has he stopped patrolling the region’s libraries looking for new sex partners, but he’s made some savvy moves to acquire Vernon Wells and Lyle Overbay, both of whom I expected to accomplish as much in 2013 as Joba Chamberlain at a Spelling Bee.

(there was also our commissioning a hypnotist who compelled Cashman to imagine Waldman in a catsuit each time he visited the “Casual Encounters” section of a popular website, but I’ll be honest — our legal dept. considers that to be some borderline Manchurian Candidate shit and we might have to just settle for the drugs going forward).

I’m trying to remain positive about this. There’s no reason why Anthony Weiner’s zipper problems need be the end of his time in the public eye, he simply needs to get it under control. David Cone eventually got his shit together, and I’ll bet Weiner can, too. Huma, if you’d like to join me for dinner at NYY Steak, I’m sure we can work out the proper course of medical action for your horny hubby. And what do I want in return? Absolutely nothing, other than knowing I’ve saved yet another relationship, and done what I can to repair a once glittering political career.

I LOVE NY,

Randy L.

08.28.16

How Dare Colin Kaerpernick Interject Real Life Into The NFL Preseason

Posted in Gridiron, politics at 10:32 pm by

Welp when you don't rise for the flag to show your respect for the men and women who fought and continue to fight for our freedom you start #losing #fans and well here is a video of my father in law #burning his #kaepernick #Jersey and now he is gonna need a new #49ers Jersey #dontdisrespect The #Americanflag #bonfire #yousuck Kaepernick #nfl

A video posted by Widder_mamak (@widder_mamak2002) on

As you’ve probaby heard elsewhere, Niners QB-who-might-not-even-be-the-starter Colin Kaepernick risked national pariah status Friday night when refusing to stand for the playing of “The Star Spangled Banner” before an all-important exhibition game against Green Bay. Recalling similar gestures by Mamoud Abdul-Rauf and Carlos Delgado, Kaepernick declared, “”I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color…there are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.” Since the person responsible for the above Instagram message apparently has no hesitation whatsoever about essentially burning a black man in effigy for all the world to see, let’s instead segue to The San Jose Mercury-News’ Marcus Thompson II, who asks,”Kaepernick’s actions left a wake of people who were so offended on behalf of service men and women, whom he allegedly disrespected…what are you doing for those veterans?”

I bet the nearly 39,000 vets who are homeless on a given night, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, would tell you to keep your stoic national anthem pose. By the way, 45 percent of those homeless veterans are African-American or Hispanic, disproportionate compared to their representation. Your symbolic gesture isn’t helping the 5.6 percent of veterans who served on active duty at some point since 2001 but can’t find a job now.

Kaepernick used his platform to stand up for a cause, knowing it would invite wrath. That dialogue should include examination of how he went about it and the effectiveness of his choice. It should also include why he felt it was necessary and what prompted him to do it.

let’s see a venn diagram w/ overlap between those insisting Colin Kaepernick no longer has NFL skills and those who’d like to see Tim Tebow get another shot. Or perhaps another for those who’d like Kaepernick to “stick to sports” with those believe Curt Schilling is a victim of “political correctness”.

Also — love the argument that because Kaepernick is no longer a starter let alone an elite player, he’s precluded from voicing a public opinion (or as Mariotti put it, he’s “irrelevant”). Seems like this alleged non-entity has generated a mountain of conversation about race, police brutality and what standing for the anthem may or may not represent. He’s managed to call out both major presidential candidates, something you’re probably not gonna see Aaron Rodgers or Tom Brady do anytime soon. And that’s ok, they’re not obliged to speak out. But it seems far more impressive to me that Kaepernick would choose this moment to make a stance precisely because he knows full well his job security is precarious and his deeds would prove (wildly) unpopular with fans, the league and fellow players.

08.27.16

The Former Darkness Crabtree Tells His Fascinating Life Story

Posted in Professional Wrestling at 2:18 pm by

Prior to tonight’s clash with IWGP JR Heavyweight Champion Kushida at Coney Island’s MCU Park, ROH’s shy and retiring Dalton Castle gives Sirius/XM’s Sam Roberts an extended audience.

08.25.16

I Often Dream Of Trains (Operated By Jah Wobble)

Posted in record collector disease, Rock Und Roll at 11:59 pm by

Apologies to Robyn Hitchcock for the above headline.  Indeed, if Wobble ditched the bass for operating a train, that’s music’s loss, but let’s do what we can to prevent Keith Levene from driving a bus or piloting an airplane

Rudy Van Gelder, RIP

Posted in record collector disease at 2:44 pm by

Farewell to Rudy Van Gelder (above, left), who has shuffled off this mortal coil at the age of 91. Arguably one of the most important recording engineers in music history, Van Gelder not only had the satisfaction of knowing he helmed sessions that changed the course of jazz, but he also managed to outlive Dick Urine.

08.24.16

Burnley’s Gray : Sorry About Wishing Death Upon Gays

Posted in Football at 8:40 pm by

England’s Football Association has asked Burnley striker Andre Gray to offer some explanation regarding offensive tweets issued from his account. Prior to a hearing, Gray’s issued an apology, as the Guardian’s Louise Taylor reports :

One tweet from the 25-year-old forward, then playing for non-league Hinckley Town, appeared to condone the killing of gay people but Gray has since apologised, claiming he is now a different person to the one who posted the messages four years ago.

“Thankfully I am not the guy I was back then,” he said in a statement but it remains to be seen whether the FA will regard the combination of apology and suggestion he is a changed man as mitigating factors in this case. In June Chris Stokes, the Coventry defender, received a one-match FA ban for making a homophobic comment on Twitter. Stokes used the term “faggots” on 2 May during Chelsea’s Premier League match with Tottenham, before later removing it and apologising. He subsequently admitted breaching FA rules relating to the use of social media and, in addition to the ban, was ordered to attend an FA education course, fined £1,000 and warned as to his future conduct.

Gray’s posts re-emerged last Saturday and hit the headlines as he scored against Liverpool to help give Burnley a 2-0 win at Turf Moor. One tweet read: “Is it me or are there gays everywhere? #Burn #Die #Makesmesick.”