While the State of Minnesota has successfully auctioned off the old Metrodome baggie, the ballpark’s tarp(s) are still available. If that tarp could talk, could you imagine what it might say? “I always regretted never having a chance to assault Vince Coleman.” “They told me I might get to meet Playboy Buddy Rose.”
Roughly a year ago, former tech exec Andrew Paulson acquired the global licensing and marketing rights to FIDE aka the World Chess Federation, and has rather bold plans to turn the game into a mass market sensation via a number of nu-media initiatives. The New York Times’ Matt Richtel patiently considers Paulson’s life story, but still likens his spiel to “a guy selling beachfront property in Nebraska.”
“Do you realize there are more people in America who play chess than tennis and golf combined?” Mr. Paulson said minutes into our first conversation, in an enthusiastic burst that made it seem irrelevant whether chess is, in fact, more popular. “Who would’ve thought people would be watching golf on TV, and, yet, they are. And all of India is watching cricket on TV. The only thing more boring than cricket is golf!”
Mr. Paulson, who lives in London, has a good idea of what India is watching because he parked himself there for several months in advance of the chess world championship, which was decided on Friday in Chennai. The victor was Magnus Carlsen, a handsome and personable 22-year-old from Norway who made a Cosmopolitan magazine list of the sexiest men of 2013. To Mr. Paulson, Mr. Carlsen is “a sea change in the history of chess, who gives us the opportunity to reveal the individual of chess players rather than their introverted inscrutability.”
The thing is, although people are listening to Mr. Paulson — and it’s hard not to — they aren’t yet doing much buying. In fact, he turned to India in part because his initial efforts in Europe to gain corporate sponsorship didn’t take. He faces many obstacles, like a governing chess body widely considered to be strange (putting it kindly), some top chess players who think that his efforts to popularize the sport are lowbrow, and the fact that he is promoting slow-motion entertainment in a world of short attention spans.
(link courtesy Tim Cook). Your move, Baron Von Raschke.
DC Sports Bog’s Sarah Kogod reports a Redskins “fanbulance” (profiled in a 2011 WaPo item by Dan Steinberg) is currently being peddled by an unhappy owner :
“For Sale- Redskins Fanbulance. 70,000 miles, runs great, 4 new tires, keg tap on side, great stereo, 2 TV’s, new rims, all new floor & great paint job but with a horrible team. $38,000.”
One Steelers fan offered $22k for it if Korody was willing to paint it black and gold first. I have no idea what the Blue Book value on a 1992 converted ambulance is, but that seems fair.
Lest you think there’s something dubious about Yao Family Wines, no less an authority than The Wine Advocate’s Robert Parker claims “the two Cabernets are actually brilliant, and the Reserve bottling ranks alongside just about anything made in Napa.”
Of course, until Vin Baker has published a review, it’s still early days for the former Rockets center’s vineyard.
(how did Clipper Darryl escape the rebranding discussion?)
While there’s no shortage of voices suggesting Daniel Snyder abandon the Redskins name, the LA Daily News’ Tom Hoffarth is, I believe, the first person to advise Donald Sterling to change the name of the Los Angeles Clippers. Calling the franchise, “a dysfunctional collection of Gilligans on the SS Minnow, from Benoit Benjamin to Wang ZhiZhi, with every other Olowokandi, Korolev and Closs in between,” Hoffarth proceeds to poll a number of NBA luminaries (including but not limited to Ralph Lawler, Reggie Miller and Charles Barkley) all of whom think, well, it’s a stupid idea. Eventually, however, Hoffarth found a great mind that thought alike in the skull of David E. Johnson, CEO of “crisis communications” experts, Strategic Vision.
“People will always think of the Clippers of the past, as the poor stepchild (next to the Lakers), because it’s too embedded in the public perception,” Johnson said.
“If I was giving them advice, I say make a clean break from that stereotype and re-introduce yourself. Establish your own brand DNA. Establish a new story to tell, a new vision of who you are, where you’re going. Sell your new rationale.
“Start by giving fans ownership of a new name by polling them. Find a local artist, or have a contest with kids, to develop a new logo. Even if they’re not fans of the team, they’ll get excited with this creative rebirth and rebranding process.
“We’ve seen this with tech companies, lifestyle companies. It’s working already in New Orleans. You sell it to ownership by showing how this is also a great way of merchandising, and you’ll see a great return on your investment. Put it in brisk terms.”
Hoffarth then points out that Johnson’s company has — what’s the nice way of putting it? —- zero credibility whatsoever. NEVER MIND.
Lest anyone believe that Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz’ 2012 settlement with Bernie Madoff trustee Irving Picard was the last we’d hear of Mets ownership’s ties to a sneaky wheeler-dealer, think again. On Monday, Mets minority investor Steve Cohen‘s SAC Capital Advisors plead guilty to federal insider trading charges and agreed to pay a record $1.8 billion in fines. Cohen, who invested $20 million in the Mets last year, in unlikely to leave the ownership group in the near future writes the New York Times’ Richard Sandomir :
Should Wilpon and Katz — or Major League Baseball — push Cohen to sell his sliver of the Mets? Fay Vincent, a former baseball commissioner who is a securities lawyer, said of Cohen: “Don’t forget, there’s a big difference between the company being charged criminally and he being charged. At this moment, he hasn’t been nicked.”
But, he added: “Generally speaking, people in these situations come forward and say to the company: ‘What do you want me to do? I don’t want to embarrass you. You’ve got plenty of troubles as it is.’ And many times, the individual will leave.”
That may not be so easy at Citi Field. The limited partners have agreed not to sell their shares for three years — or until around March 2015 — and to offer them to existing partners first. Given the debt-filled recent history of the Mets, it is unlikely that Wilpon has $20 million lying around to return to Cohen as the team seeks, in the weeks ahead, to sign some free agents with the money now coming off its payroll. Other minority partners, like the comedian Bill Maher, may not be willing to finance Cohen’s exit.
And if his stake were then offered to outside bidders, how many people these days want to invest tens of millions in the Mets?
…and if he’s busy, maybe Mets minority owner Steven Cohen would like to take a shot at the sports-entertainment business. It might take his mind off other problems.
“Imagine if the National Basketball Association partnered with EDM DJ/producers to create a next level marketing platform for the music, culture and progressive mainstream marketability of not just the league, but EDM culture and the longevity of the producers themselves?” That’s the
horrifying fascinating hypothesis outlined by Do Androids Dance?’s Marcus Dowling, who while quick to note Rony Seikaly’s second act as a deep house DJ, argues, “the interplay between music and the NBA has existed but been not capitalized upon in a commercially beneficial and progressive manner.”
“In this ideal scenario I have hand-picked franchises that have always or are currently showing an eye towards progressive ideologies, or, are located in cities wherein the tie between progressive idealism and electronic dance music is at a fever pitch. The DJ/producers involved? Even simpler. It’s a mix of top and rising names who are not currently affiliated with any one label in particular, and as well are closely affiliated with/grew up in that city, or are from within a 250 mile radius. The teams and producers that in my estimation would be incredible in the inaugural two-year run of the ideal scenario are as follows:
Miami Heat – GTA
Chicago Bulls – Flosstradamus (above)
Toronto Raptors – Wondagurl
Brooklyn Nets – Cousin Cole
New York Knicks – Baauer
Dallas Mavericks – Peligrosa
Los Angeles Clippers – TOKiMONSTA
Golden State Warriors – Nanosaur
Phoenix Suns – AZ Gunslingaz
Washington Wizards – Alex Young
Persons far more learned than myself have written extensively over the last day or so about the impact and legacy of the just-departed Lou Reed, and while there’s extensive documentation of Reed’s prowess as a lyricist, guitarist, journalist-baiter, tai chi enthusiast, scooter pitchman, occasional thespian and enduring symbol of all-things-NYC-demi-monde, there’s one side of Lou that’s not received nearly as much coverage ; The Consumerist Gadget Hound.
Reed interviews over the years are certain peppered with references to the technological innovations of the day, but if you’re like me, you’ve sometimes wondered how great one of Al Goldstein’s “Midnight Blue” tirades directed at Hammacher Schlemmer or 47th St. Photo might’ve turned out had they been written and narrated instead by Lou. The closest we’re likely to come is a July 2004, WSJ/Marketwatch piece by Ryan Malkin in which Reed — described as “a sonic perfectionist” — is invited to test out some of the era’s more high-end audio speakers. While Reed wasn’t without praise for some of the products on offer (“those Klipsch are fucking unbelievable; these things can do anything,”), the listening session got off to a rather rough start.
“So what’s the first one?” asks Reed, clad in jeans and a trim brown leather jacket. We turn up the volume on the Bose Acoustimass 5 Series III system ($500), which includes two tiny speakers — just 6.2-inches high — and a subwoofer. Bose is the No. 1 selling speaker brand in the country, likely due to the company’s hundred or so retail stores. But it’s certainly not this audiophile’s speaker of choice. “No, no!” Reed yells, not even a minute into “Rock Minuet,” furiously waving his hands back and forth for us to stop. His complaint? The speakers deliver high- and low-end sound, but no middle. Plus, they display a “harsh high end,” and although the subwoofer adds nice bass, “it makes the guitar sound thin.” A Bose spokesperson says that the speakers are balanced and designed to reproduce low and mid-to-high frequencies “according to the artist’s original performance.” But this artist, for one, disagrees. Still, we give the Bose another shot, this time playing hip-hop artist Mos Def, to test how the speakers handle heavy bass. “Oh no, oh no,” Reed groans, sitting up to pet Lola, his Jack Russell terrier, who’s curled up on a pillow next to him. “I’d pay money not to hear that.”
“Next,” Reed demands. “Rock Minuet” once again begins to pump, this time through the B&W 704s ($2,200). B&W is the bestselling high-end speaker on the market. The company’s press release claims the 704s “redefine the overall level of loudspeaker performance that rational audio consumers can demand.” Maybe so, but Reed was never accused of being completely rational. “Whoa, ugly,” he shakes his head. “I found that unpleasant, the voice sounds sibilant, it’s just not clear.” B&W says the problem could be a number of things, from electronics to placement. “Speakers are very subjective, and I’m sorry Mr. Reed didn’t care for these,” says Chris Browder, B&W’s executive vice president.
I’m not entirely sure what the fuck is going on here, but unless/until some merchant introduces the anatomically-correct John Riggins Doll (In A Diaper), Ashton-Drake Galleries just won the award for creepiest doll/action figure without a Jesus component.
I thought it shameful enough when Boomer wore a Poker Stars.com beanie during postgame interviews, but was it really necessary to license David Wells’ likeness for this ghastly Halloween item?
There’s several reasons why Vulcan (or your local equivalent, if you’re lucky enough to have one) deserves your patronage more than Netflix or Redbox. You didn’t need one, but here’s another. And yes, this is a blatant attempt to get them to waive my late fees after I neglected to return a series of art films in a timely manner.
SLAYER has collaborated with Arnette eyewear on the Uncommon Projects series. There are two versions of the Witch Doctor that have interchangeable arms compatible with other sunglasses in the A.C.E.S. collection, the Skylight snowboard goggle and Series 3MX motocross goggle. These are all limited edition.
Arnette’s Uncommon Projects division features signature pieces that tell a unique story, commemorate a partnership or reflect the personal style one of the company’s notable athletes.
…but if you’re young, Australian and really hard up, Gumtree account holder Nathan is offering $150 (AU) and what he optimistically calls, “an enormous opportunity for ago-getter to receive great experience in the art of football banter, while building contacts in the football fan underworld.”
I’m looking for an intelligent, insightful young man (preferably a law student) with an excellent command of English and a wide knowledge of football, particularly of Arsenal Football Club.
This role requires the successful applicant to wake up at 4.30am on Champions League Matchdays and post insightful commentary and engage in banter in a private Facebook group of Football enthusiasts on my behalf.
As I have a busy work and social life, I cannot arise before 7am as I must catch up on my beauty sleep. However I also cannot allow my reputation as an intelligent football fan to fall by the wayside.
If you are successful in your pursuit of the job, you will receive a style guide which contains a selection of “Dinoisms” (common phrases and standard vernacular I utilise) which must be used when posting or engaging in banter with specified targets.
The successful applicant may also be trained to engage in strategic flirting and mind games with several females via the Facebook Messenger application.
The successful applicant may also be required to troll specific football identities on Twitter, namely Andrew Orsatti, Mark Bosnich and John Cross. You will also be expected to attend weekly team meetings with my brother and I to brainstorm ideas for attack posts, photoshopping and general group slander. You will also undergo a three-day drilling to test your quick-wit and banter skills.
With an estate sale that rivals those of Derrick Coleman and Michael Beasley for star power, former MLB pitcher-turned-Rhode Island’s-worst-investment, Curt Schilling would like you take your eyes off this week’s exciting postseason baseball and maybe considering checking out the gigantic pile of useless crap he’s selling next Saturday :
Yes, we are pleased to announce the estate sale of the residence of Mr. Curt Schilling of the Boston Red Sox. No, the bloody sock is not for sale, but exquisite furniture, decor and other home furnishings will all be for sale. What a wonderful opportunity, and we are truly pleased to bring you this exceptional estate sale that will knock your Sox off! This is a gorgeous 7 bedroom 8000 square foot home that is offering a great variety of items. To name several of the items … gorgeous cement entry table, china cabinet, large custom 13 foot dining table & ten chairs, Tiffany & Waterford crystal pieces, Lladro figurines, two matching custom sofas, sofa tables, coffee table, Kohler & Campbell baby grand piano, home decor & accents, mirrors, faux plants, floor lamp, mantle clock, floor & table lamps, glassware, Pottery Barn dish set, microwave, linens, accent pillows, set of four porch rockers, Catnapper power lift chair, artwork, set of three bar stools, Holiday decor, Pottery Barn bunk beds, LOTS of toys & games, electronics, clothing, DVDs & books, drum set, The Bambini zamboni, white double Pottery Barn bedroom set, Craftsman tractor entitled “The Ice Mower”, Hummer golf cart, baseball glove chair, marble top pedestal sink, billiard table, pinball & arcade games, ping pong table, tools, various sporting equipment, pristine retro Coca Cola machine, matching sofas & club chairs from the home theater, Studio 38 drafting table, lots of costumes just in time for Halloween … and so much more to be unpacked! Due to the large quantity of items, the sale hours have been extended from our usual to 8-4:00pm! This is one you DO NOT want to miss!!
This is an original painting on black velvet for the show Velvet Legends of Wrestling held at Ltd Gallery in Seattle, February of 2013. It is 36″ x 36″, acrylic on gold leaf, with rhinestones for the stars. This tribute to wrestling great Macho Man Randy Savage and his manager/wife Miss Elizabeth is a reference to Viennese Secessionist painter Gustav Klimt’s classic “the Kiss”. It is unframed.
Marlins Pitcher Henderson Alvarez made history on Sunday by tossing the fifth no-hitter in franchise history and the first no-hitter at Marlins Park. The Marlins are offering fans who were unable to attend the game the opportunity to purchase the remaining unsold tickets from yesterday’s game. The tickets can be bought at marlins.com/alvareznono and the Marlins Team Store located at Marlins Park.
Tickets went on sale today and will be available until Sunday, October 6th at midnight. The 9,100 remaining tickets are being sold starting at $15 with the majority of tickets available at the Vista Level.
A crowd of 28,315 was at Marlins Park for Closing Day and witnessed Alvarez pitch the historic game, beating the Detroit Tigers 1-0. Alvarez’s no-hitter is the fourth since the start of 1900 to be thrown on the final day of the regular season. – Marlins.com press release, 9/30/2013
According to The Sporting News, the tickets in question aren’t even hard ducats. The Marlins want you to pay $15 for a fucking PDF (with the wrong date listed). These PDF’s are an even poorer excuse for a real ticket than Jay Mariotti’s PDF pamphlet about how he doesn’t beat up his dates can be consider a book (links courtesy Baseball Think Factory)
File this one under, “Not Served At The Wing Bowl” ; Foobooz reports the Philadelphia Eagles are launching their own 2011 cabernet sauvignon, aka “Rollout”, sourced from the Napa Valley and Dry Creek. Which I guess sounds better than “sourced from the former ECW Arena”. It also sounds like a nicer sales pitch than, “we’re going to make Dick Vermeil cry”.
The wine will be on sale throughout the Philadelphia area at Pennsylvania liquor stores as well as at southern New Jersey retailers. The wine will also be available for purchase on the club level and in suites at Lincoln Financial Field. We’re sure it will go great with Marc Vetri’s North Philadelphia sausage cheesesteak.
Eagles Senior Vice President of Business, Ari Roitman says the bottle is “a nice way for fans to celebrate four generations strong of Eagles football whether they enjoy it with friends and family over dinner or save it as a keepsake.”
The above full page ad in Sunday’s Sacramento Bee, prompted by an ESPN The Magazine list that ranks the Kings dead last in all of major North American pro sports teams. Though I think they finished ahead of the Montreal Alouettes. According to the Bee’s Tom Couzens, “the list is based on weighted scores in eight categories: fan relations (25.2 percent), affordability (17.4), bang for the buck (16.8), stadium experience (12.4), players (11.3), ownership (10.2), title track (3.6) and coaching (3.1).” I’m gonna presume that “stadium experience” includes watching DeMarcus Cousins get a coach fired.
Gene Simmons (above, left) has done many craven, rotten things during his many years in the entertainment business…but we’ll leave ‘Music From The Elder’ out of this for the time being. Never before, however, has Gene stooped to regurgitating old Dino Costa monologues in the hopes of selling tickets to an Arena Football game. Radio.com’s Brian Ives provides the auspices for Simmons’ latest attempts to curry favor with free agent QB Tim Tebow (link courtesy Maura Johnston)
“He’s got a religious passion, as well he should, we’re in America,” the KISS frontman told Radio.com earlier this week. ”He’s proud to be a Christian, what’s wrong with that? And yet, with sports media and pop culture media, they make fun of his religion. Really? In America? If he was wearing a burqa, they wouldn’t dare say anything [editor's note: only Muslim women wear burqas]. But if you’re a Christian, you get to be picked on? What the hell? The guy’s got family values. I never saw the media picking on Michael Vick for torturing dogs. Or this other football player, who’s alleged to have killed, committed murder. That’s ‘cool.’ But a guy who’s religious and has got family values isn’t ‘cool?’ He’s cool to me.”
The treatment that he feels Tebow has received makes him particularly incensed: “They’re a**holes. And they should be called to task, and they should lose their license, because in a very real way, as far as I’m concerned, it’s slander and defamation. You’re making fun of somebody’s religion.”
The New York Daily News’ Howie Kussay reports a Dane, WI golf course is getting heat for the above 9/11 promotion ; would you have preferred they marked the anniversary by raising prices?
After receiving a slew of negative comments on their Facebook page for their insensitivity – “The anniversary is a somber one not a reason to offer cheap gold promotions,” wrote Kimberly Pearce Stapleton – the course attempted to rectify the situation with this message:
“We would first like to apologize to everyone that we have upset or feels we have disrespected in anyway. By no means did we mean to do this. Here is what we will do this Wednesday 9-11; we will still let all that have tee times booked play for the previous rates we posted. Then for all other golf that day we would like to donate the $ difference between our normal rate and the previous price for the day to the 9/11 Memorial. We hope that everyone will now see this as a positive as we really meant it to be. Again we do sincerely apologize for offending anyone.”
I don’t know, that’s a lot of basic math to absorb when I’m trying to manufacture outrage.
While I’m a little dismayed to learn this news from Newsday’s Neil Best rather than from one of CSTB’s own contributors, it’s a big deal just the same. Best reports Tuesday that the Yankees radio broadcasts are likely to move in 2014 from CBS owned WCBS to sister station WFAN, thus displacing the Mets, who’ve been at WFAN since it’s 1987 launch (and WHN from 1983).
Lonn Trost, the Yankees’ chief operating officer, said Tuesday a deal for the team’s radio rights is “close,” but he would not confirm or deny that WFAN is the likely landing place. “Right now we’re in negotiations and everything is confidential,” Trost said. “Part of the agreement we’re drafting has a confidentiality agreement. I can’t even get into it. I am close with some entity for next year.”
Still, he cautioned, “Things have gone in so many directions with this negotiation . . . I can’t tell you today if it will be the same thing tomorrow.”
Jeff Wilpon, chief operating officer of the Mets, said Tuesday while visting a firehouse in Manhattan that it is “fairly accurate” that the Mets are leaving WFAN. Wilpon said he expects a resolution to the team’s radio deal for 2014 and beyond in about six weeks.
It is not clear where the Mets would land, but options include ESPN Radio and one or more of the New York stations — including WOR — owned by Clear Channel Communications, which earlier in the process made a serious bid for the Yankees’ rights.
How much would you pay to acquire an RIAA certified ‘Parallel Lines’ Gold Record Award presented to “the staff of WKRP”? How much would you pay to acquire an RIAA certified Platinum Record Award for the Scum Of The Earth’s Swan Song debut LP? And how much would you pay to make sure you never, ever had to see this video again, as long as you lived?
I do understand that you might be on a budget. (eBay link courtesy Ken Katkin)