Category Archives: Sports

Rubber Ducky Escape From Palms Vegas

After our early scrimmage on the Tuesday of Summer League, Joel Bosh (Chris Bosh’s brother), CJ Giles, Elram, and I were looking for something to do for the night since we had a day off the next day. At around 5pm, CJ hit me up and let me know that was going on. He mentioned to me that there was “Rubber Ducky” pool party going on that night and that we should go check out how much a cabana would cost us.

We all went down there to check it out at about 6. There were people all over who were setting up the cabana’s and filling to pool with the signature rubber duckies. We first went over to the pool and grabbed all the rubber duckies we could that were marked “free drink.” We must have left with about 25 free drink duckies, but before we did, our cabana host showed us which cabana would be ours. he set us up with one at the very back of the pool where we would be right next to a bar. Boom. He told us that each bottle would run about $400, but that he could kick us another one under the table for half off. Basically, we would be set. I was excited.

We headed back down to the pool around 9pm and it was already crackin. We went back to our cabana and got the party started. The problem with the situation was that somebody invited these girls into our cabana (nothin wrong with that, usually) who proceeded to destroy our entire $400 bottle and half our ducky supply. Coddamit. 

I began to worry about our drink supply when all of a sudden, the guy who had promised us an under-the-table bottle of Grey Goose, showed up with what looked like a water carafe, but was actually filled with the promised Goose. Nobody knew what was in there except us guys who had reserved the cabana. We all enjoyed the disguised alcohol without the outside consumption and had a great time at the party. 

The party was designed to really be an early-night party, ending at midnight so that people could shower and head out to the real club for the night, so while I was lolligagging, the rest of the gang paid for the alcohol, asked if I was cool to catch up, and left. Of course I was cool to catch up. They left and I stayed back a few minutes onger.

Right before I was ready to leave, they guy who hooked us up walked over to me and asked if I was planning on paying for the alcohol. I told him that it had already been paid, that I had watched the other guys sign the credit card receipt. 

He told me that they had paid for the official bill, but they had failed to give him the cash required for the under-the-table liquor that he cant ring up in the computer. I, being the brokest one of my whole crew, was not about to fork over $200 cash (clearly I didnt even have that much cash on me). I told the guy that I would call everyone else and work it out. 

I picked up the Blackberry and called up the guys. 

“Yo, put me on speaker,” I told CJ, “Man what the hell? Did you guys leave me here with this bill?”

Their answer seemed to be collective.

“We told you to come on! It was under-the-table, why would we pay for it?”

I panicked and hung up the phone. It now became clear that I had to plan my escape. I looked up and around and could not see the guy anywhere. I decided I would just get up and do my best to be inconspicuous (a tall order for a tall guy). I scope the exit, and slowly started to walk towards it. Each step I took seemed to be so calculated. Was I walking too slow? Too fast? Was I looking like I had something to hide? Did I look too nonchelant? 

All these thoughts were swirling through my head even though I had only taken about 5 of the 150 steps it would take to escape. You must understand that the pool was huge and the exit was clear on the opposite side of my cabana. 

I took a couple more steps when I realized that the guy was walking 4 steps in front of me, the same pace as me, with his back to me. 

I saw him look over his left shoulder. I ducked right. He then looked over his right shoulder. I ducked left. All of this happened as we continued to walk. I just needed time to think and I was starting to believe that that time would not come. 

As we finally hooked the left to go to the home stretch, I had an idea. I figured I would enter the restaurant because there was a direct entrance to the restaurant from the pool. The restaurant must have another exit to the lobby of the Palms Place hotel and thus an exit to the parking lot and back to the Palms. 

The guy kept it moving right past the path to the restaurant while I took a left, keeping the same pace, heading to what appeared to be the promised land. But, right when I hooked that left, as if he had been in this situation many times before, the guy took off running toward the exit. Right then I realized that he was going to go cut me off at the resturant exit, which must also be in position to see the regular Palms Place exit. 

I turned right back around, this time not looking back or worried about pace and walked right back in the direction I had come from.

The guy must’ve still been indoors as I turned the right, nearly tripping over people and duckies on my way all the way back past our cabana. I remembered that there was an emergency exit on the side of the building that I accidentally discovered earlier while searching for the bathroom. I hightailed it over there.

I barrelled through the “alarm will sound” labeled doors and didnt look back. They led out to the street, but in the middle of a ton of bushes. I stayed low, hunching over and wading through the bushes down Flamingo Street, all the way back to the Palms.

When I finally got back I celebrated, met up with the guys and went into Moon. It couldnt have turned out better. Boom.

Tagged , , ,

Naggin’ In Iceland

My old high school teammate and current overseas baller Avi Fogel and I were driving down to the UCSD campus to play some pickup ball with the D2 kids when he decided to break the silence of the lazy afternoon. 

“Rod man I forgot to tell you about for funny ish that happened when I was overseas in Iceland,” he said excitedly, knowing that I would enjoy the story. 

“Oh yea?” I responded. “What’s crackin?” 

I won’t quote him because due to laughter, I don’t remember his exact words. So I’ll it the way I remember it. He tells me that when he was in Iceland the majority of his teammates were black and from the U.S. He said that one night they all went out to some Icelandic club that, based on his description of Icelandic women, I would have to assume was pretty crackin and filled with many dime pieces. 

One of his boys was REALLY feelin one of those dimes out in the club so he made a play, but she shot him down. I guess later he tried again, and again, and finally again. She just wasn’t buying what the man was selling I guess. I wasn’t there, but I can imagine a dude thinkin that he was gonna get some “easy” play overseas who realized that she wasn’t that way. 

Well, I guess the girl started to get annoyed with the situation. She walked up to Avi and his bothersome teammate and said “Why do you keep naggin me so much? All you do is nag nag nag!” 

I guess Avi replies “Hahaha what? He keeps nagging you?” 

Frustrated, the girl says to the teammate: “Yes. Why are you such a stupid NAGGER?” 

Ummm…. I guess the accent made it tough to hear, so the teammate says: “What? Bitch, you don’t know me!” and allegedy socks her in the face! 

I haven’t laughed so hard at anything yet since season ended. Obviously hitting a girl is off limits, but coddamn, he hit her because she called him a stupid NAGGER? Classic. Nagger should have shut his coddamn mouth!

Tagged ,

More PIstol Pete-ism’s

On Ball Don’t Lie, I wrote about Pistol Pete and how his skills were superhuman. Go read that, if you haven’t already. 

Now that you’ve read it, I decided to list all the Pistol Pete-isms that people posted. So, here they are, uncut: 

a Pistol Pete spin-dribble started Hurricane Katrina 

* When he ran suicides, he called them baby-makers.
* He could have averaged 50 points a game, but he likes palindromes.
* Shaquille O’Neal only took the name ‘Diesel’ because Pistol took Premium.
* It wasn’t March Madness until Pistol got angry.
* Dick Vitale sounded like Jay Bilas until he saw Pistol’s crossover.
* ESPN originally stood for “Every Shot of Pistols is Notable.” 

Referees never called fouls on Pistol Pete; he ordered them to randomly blow their whistles to make his possessions more interesting. 

Pistol Pete caused the 1977 New York blackout during a pickup game when his crossover dribble accidentally generated an electromagnetic pulse. 

Pistol Pete’s baby teeth grew arms and legs and eventually spawned into 7 members of the 1986 Celtics. 

Pistol Pete once melted a pair of Chuck Taylors into the shape of the Virgin Mary dribbling a basketball—15 minutes later, the silhouette began producing tears.” 

Pistol Pete is so fast that all his assists are to himself. 

Pistol Pete doesn’t break ankles, he amputates feet. 

Pistol Pete didn’t drop dimes, he dropped C-notes. 

When Pistol Pete played, they moved the 3-point line to half court, because a 20-footer is just a layup to Pistol Pete.” 

Pistol Pete never hit the rim. He swished every shot he ever took, he refused to even dunk the ball as he viewed the rim as disgusting and didn’t want to touch it in any way. 

if pistol pete was black they’d call him rod benson 

Pistol Pete ran the 3-man weave single-handedly. 

Pistol Pete racked up 21 assists in a one-on-one game. 

Pistol Pete went deep into the NIT tournament despite the fact that his teammates were 7 goats and a truck tire. 

Pistol Pete once had a line of 63 points, 21 assists, 18 rebounds, and 3 impregnated cheerleaders.” 

Pistol Pete is a good scorer without the ball. Literally, he just stares at the ball and it goes in. 

Pistol Pete’s crossover is so devastating that reading about it will break your ankles. Don’t believe me? Look down at your ankles right now. That’s right.” 

If Pistol Pete lost half his talent, they’d still say he boom got them dos! 

Pistol Pete ran the triangle offense in 1 on 1 games. 

Pistol Pete didn’t call time outs. He stopped time. 

Pistol Pete woulda averaged 57 points a game with the college three point line (that one’s real).” 

Pistol Pete is so fast that he makes other fast people…………..seem…..umm….not..so fast. 

well that sucked.” 

Pistol Pete referred to practice as nap time. 

Pistol Pete ate whole boxes of Wheaties in between time outs. 

Pistol Pete never turned the ball over ever. The numbers that indicated otherwise on stat sheets were on the order of Pistol himself, just to show his supreme humility; one among many of his countless outstanding qualities. 

Pistol Pete knows where Carmen San Diego is.” 

The 3PT line wasn’t ready like spaghetti for Pistol Pete 

The Pistol often pissed his name onto the opposing teams locker rooms just like we piss our names into snow. Most of the floors had to be replaced becase of the seriousness of his piss’ architectual damage. 

Pistol Petes calander goes straight from the 31st March to the 2nd of April – No one fools pistol Pete. 

Pistol Petes tears cure cancer – too bad he never cries. 

When Pistol Pete does push ups he doesn’t go up the world goes down. 

When the Boogeyman goes to sleep every night, he checks his closet for Pistol Pete. 

Pistol Pete gave Mona Lisa that smile. 

Superman owns a pair of Pistol Pete pyjamas. 

Pistol Pete sold his soul to the devil for his rugged good looksand unparallelled rugby ability. Shortly after the transaction wasfinalized, Pete spear-tackled the devil and took his soul back. The devil, who appreciates irony, couldn’t stay mad and admitted he should haveseen it coming. They now play poker every second Wednesday of the month. 

The only time Pistol Pete was wrong was when he thought he had made a mistake.” 

Pistol Pete only missed shots to make you think you have a chance. 

Pistol Pete once scored 50 points, during halftime. 

Pistol Pete’s shots vaccinate against polio. 

Wilt Chamberlain was Pistol Pete standing on his own shoulders.” 

Pistol Pete once dunked from the free throw line in a game … the opponent’s free throw line. 

Pistol Pete never checked into the game, he just walked on and off the court whenever he felt like it. 

Pistol Pete didn’t try to outscore the other team, he tried to outscore both teams. 

Pistol Pete’s hair was a lock-down defender.” 

When Pistol ran suicides he didn’t touch the foul line and the midcourt line, he touched I-95, I-77, I-35… 

Pistol Pete once ate an orange and started crying…and Gatorade was born 

Pistol Pete once put the ball through both baskets on the same shot 

Pistol Pete was Mr. Miyagi’s father 

During the opening tip once, the pistol grabbed the ball and made a layup before it reached maximum height 

Pistol Pete could throw underhand so well, he once struck out 26 batters in a slow pitch softball game. 

The only guy he didn’t strike out was Chuck Norris, who flew out to center” 

When Pistol Pete’s shot gets cold, the inside of the rim becomes a superconductor. 

The Soviet Union had an answer to Reagan’s star wars defense program, they collapsed because they didn’t have an answer to Pistol Pete. 

When Pistol Pete played for the Jazz, they saved money on halftime entertainment. Pistol Pete would just watch other teams acts on the road and do them in costume at home. In one game, Pistol Pete had 60 points, 20 assists, and 20 rebounds in the second half, after spending most of halftime escaping from an underwater tank where he could not breathe.” 

Pistol Pete’s statistics started the high tech boom in America by creating a demand for more powerful adding machines. 

Pistol Pete could sink a 15 lb. bowling ball from half court, while lying flat on his back. 

Every woman that Wilt Chamberlin slept with had been with Pistol Pete first. 

Pete Maravich played a full game at lsu with a splint on his knee. He couldn’t walk so he stood the whole game at half court and scored 30 pts with 20 assists and 5 steals.” 

Pistol Pete could reliably hit a three from any body position while break dancing. 

Pistol Pete never missed a layup, ever, in his life. The closest shot he ever missed was a 12 foot jumper. Hurricane Camille was hitting Louisiana with 130 mph winds but Pete insisted on practicing on the outdoor court. He also missed a half court shot that day, after spending a few hours shooting. 

Pistol Pete once beat Bruce Lee in a martial arts fight. Pete knocked him out with an unorthodox two handed push to the forehead. Only his fingertips touched Lee.” 

pistol pete was ready before spaghetti 

Pistol Pete wasn’t named after a gun, guns were named after him. 

When Pistol Pete ran the floor, he never traveled any distance, the distance traveled for him. 

Pistol Pete didn’t have ice water in his veins, your cooler has Pete’s blood.” 

Pistol Pete averaged 39 points and 18 dimes one season, after he retired. 

The season after Pistol Pete was traded from the Jazz… He still led them in scoring. 

Pistol Pete once outscored the opposing team for an entire game, at the tip off. 

Pistol Pete didn’t drink water during time outs, he drank souls. 

Pistol Pete’s socks led the league in assists.” 

The reason why the 3 point line was not invented after Pistol Pete was because he would average 70 points a game 

To make a great branch of steroids you need Hennessy, Cocaine, and Pistol Pete’s Blood. 

Pistol Pete can play and finish quarter averaging 40 points, 10 boards and 12 assists 

Pistol Pete is the legitimate father of Kobe, Lebron, Chris Paul, and Michael Beasly 

During the 1980 Summer Olympics the US didn’t go because Pistol Pete coached the Yugoslavia team. We call that “intelligent” warfare” 

Pete Maravich is most known for destroying Dick Vitale blood vessels in his neck from saying “It’s Awesome BABY!” 

A Pistol Pete crossover would end Shaun Livingston’s life. 

Pistol Pete could win a championship with three cardboard players and Gumby on his side with the 07 08 Miami Heat on the bench” 

A Pistol Pete crossover would break the ankles of the entire opposing team 

Pistol Pete can make a shot while double fisting beers in the owner’s box 

Pistol Pete is so Christ-like, a 5 year old can walk onto a D-1 team after watching his youtube instructional videos 

Pistol Pete can score 40 while walking on his hands and shooting with his feet” 

Any guy who had to guard Pistol Pete would become so negative that if he were in a darkroom he’d develop. 

Pistol Pete never learned how to follow his own shot because he never missed any. 

A spinning, no-look, between the legs bounce pass from Pistol Pete ended world hunger. 

Pistol Pete brushed his teeth with brillo pads and flossed with razor blades. 

Pistol Pete used to fill his jock with week-old crullers because that’s how he rolls.” 

Pistol Pete’s homework basketball videos led the NBA in scoring and assists in 1988. 

Pistol Pete wants everyone to know that he let Jerry West be the logo 

Pistol Pete solved Tupac and Biggie’s murders. He just doesn’t want to tell you who did it. 

Pistol Pete could beat Tiger Woods in a golf tournament. Nah…just kidding.” 

pistol pete didn’t need his team mates, his team mates needed him 

pistol pete was always on fire, he caused heat waves. 

his shooting was so hot, he ended the cold war. 

he could dribble a bowling ball better than Skip to My Lou would handle the basketball. 

pistol pete doesn’t climb mountains, mountains bow down to him. 

pistol pete was so good, everyone around him looked so bad. 

he’d score so much points, the scorer often lost count. 

his numbers were so outrageous, nobody today would’ve believed pistol pete was white. 

to post 84: pistol pete is so good, he’ll shoot a basketball in a golf hole…using a golf CLUB! ‘nuff said, pete pawns the tiger” 

I heard once that Pistol Pete went up for a layup that started in Times Square and he landed somewhere around Beijing, thus creating the Chinese Basketball Association. 

Pistol Pete never used a gun when hunting, he spit out lead bullets and crapped Titanium-another reason they call him the Pistol. 

The Army wanted to recruit the Pistol because they knew then they really could be an Army of one. 

Someone once asked Pistol Pete what he thought about racism in America, he answered “I pity them racist fools” Shortly after Mr. T changed it to “I pity the fool” The royalties he got on the quote were amazing. 

Pistols socks were tight when he put them on, but he was so silky smooth they instantly changed to silk and slid down, thus the floppy look. 

Pistol Pete didn’t really die, he had started playing ball again as a black man named Michael Jordan. The NBA decided they better kill off the Pistol before the Government started looking into it. The Pistol transcended race, gender, and time.” 

For fun Pistol Pete would do his crossover in front of pregnant ladies causing the disease we now know as polio 

Pistol Pete was with Moses as he was escaping from the egyptians, when faced with the red see he did a single crossover breaking the sees ankles and causing it to split. 

Strangley enough in jeopardy you can answer all the questions with who is Pitol Pete” 

God originally asked Noah to teach people about Pistol’s arc, but Noah was too big a fool to comprehend its perfection. 

Many of today’s NBA players still receive assists from Pistol Pete. 

By counteracting a patient’s body tremors, Pistol Pete could cure Parkinson’s. 

Pistol Pete’s cross over cause the Leaning Tower of Pisa.” 

When pistol pete heard people calling Jordan the G.O.A.T he rose from the grave and entered Jordan’s nightmare as a monstrous basketball player crossing his airness and blocking him for hours Jordan later chronicled this ordeal in his critcally aclaimed “Space Jam” 

When athletes make amazing plays time seems to slow down as God watches there acrobatic stunts in slow motion when Pistol Pete does time goes backwards as God continously rewinds his breathtaking drives causing what we now know as Deja Vu. 

Pistol Pete’s amazing leaps allowed him to break the space time continum. At the age of Forty he jumped and was transported to broke to 2008 where he saw the pitiful fate of the LSU basketball program, this is the real cause of his sudden heart attack. ” 

Chuck Norris once challenged Pistol Pete to a 1 on 1 game. That was last time anyone had ever seen Chuck Norris 

Pistol Pete can win a 7-game series in 3 games. 

Pistol Pete’s granny invented the granny shot. 

Pistol Pete ate white chocalate and pooped out jason williams. 

Pistol Petes blood is made of dimes 

Pistol Pete is raefer alstons father 

Pistol Pete can dribble with his penis 

Pistol Pete did a crossover and went back in time and brought back chris kaman 

Pistol Pete already knows how lebrons career is gonna go because hes already witnessed. 

Pistol Pete is a decendant of zues 

Pistol Petes crossover killed the dinasours 

Pistol Petes crossover broke pangea apart. 

Pistol Pete had such good vision he found america first. 

Pistol Petes sweat makes gatorade 

Pistol Pete went to medical school with Dr.J and the Professor 

Pistol Petes jumpshot killed JFK 

Pistol Pete proved white men can jump by jumping over the moon” 

Pistol Pete was given the nickname “Pistol” because he carried a revolver in his gym shorts to intimidate opposing teams during shoot arounds. He once shot a man for double dribbling. 

The Pistol shot over 66% from the 3 point line when it was introduced into the NBA while eating a ham sandwich with his other arm. 

The Harlem Globetrotters only have 3 losses in over 15,000 games played. Two of those were solely at the hands of Pistol Pete when he was on the JV squad in high school (103 to 79 and 97 to 96…he had the flu in that one).” 

Pistol Pete’s crossover was so filthy he had to get a tetanus shot. 

Pistol Pete’s crossover was so good only Stuart Scott could see how he did it. 

Pete noticed a flaw in wilt’s delivery from the line before his 100-point game, when he went 28-32 from the stripe. He also had 35 assists in the game before going back to being a gleam in his pappy’s eye. 

Pete figured out a way to make his ‘67 Nova run on seawater, and was the go to guy for Red Auerbach’s Cubans. 

Pete got his handles from a seance with Black Jesus and the Houdini of the Hardwood, and gave his top secret hangover cure to Hot Rod Hundley.” 

pistol pete once won an nba championship and got the #1 pick for his team. his team re-drafted him. 

“pistol pete, why are you so awesome? you’re the reason that i’m proud to be from louisiana” is what karl malone recites during every free throw. 

in a best of 7 playoff series, pistol pete once came back from a 3-0 deficit to win the series 5-2. 

when wilt scored 100 points, pistol pete tallied the assists.” 

Pistol Pete was so good that his shadow was the runner up for National Player of the Year…..Three years after he left college. 

Pistol Pete could touch MC Hammer. 

The framers of the constitution gave Pistol Pete 13/8 of a vote. 

Every time Pistol Pete steps on a crack, he breaks someones backboard. 

Pistol Pete could turn water into gatorade, and when he played, gatorade had not been invented yet.” 

Pistol Pete is called Pistol because he once killed a man with an out of control bounce pass….. 

Pistol Pete’s jumpshot created the baby boom of the 60’s…women got turned on every time pistol hit them jumpers 

Pistol Pete and Chunck Norris once played a game of one on one and no winner is yet to be named….earthquakes are the result of this epic game….. 

Pistol Pete’s crossover is the reason for the emergency system tests on TV…..” 

Pistol Pete was such a fast, sharp, passer, that in a champion ship game he once cracked the time barrier, giving the ball to the newest sensation at center, Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln converted the two, securing Pete’s assist, but failed to convert the foul shot, enraging assistant coach Booth

Tagged , ,

More North Dakota Livin’

That picture is a little blurry. My phone doesn’t have the best of focus abilities. Regardless, the only thing you need to see in this picture is the temperature. It’s still cold out here. It’s actually snowing right now. Aint that some ish right there? 

Well, despite the cold weather, I’ve still been living my life real North Dakota style. What does that mean exactly? It means that I’ve been playing a lot of Smash Brothers and Madden. It means that I’ve been buying food and CD’s from Wal-Mart. It means that I’ve been pushing the 12 passenger Van from 1st street to 12th and from A to D. It means that as part of a photoshoot I did for SLAM magazine, we took like 50 photo’s outside in the snow, leaving me with numb fingers and a frostbitten smile. It means that I have pretty much taken a liking to darts, pool, and blackjack. 

What else have I been doing lately? I’ve been hitting up the local bar circuit again. I gave up on Buck’s a long time ago, but I have recently gone back. I decided that as long as I’m not looking for women, Buck’s aint that bad. Well, that doesn’t necessarily make it good, but it aint bad. Ever since I started playing blackjack (very, very low stakes blackjack), I can stand to be in Buck’s for a good hour or so. That does not mean that I didn’t see a 300lb. woman bend alllll the way over last night in an attempt to get my attention. It also doesn’t mean that 4 different 50 year old women didn’t try to get at me just last night. Seriously. I saw one coming and pretended to read the label on my Miller Lite like there was some new information on that bad boy. Still, she tried to talk to me as I paid her no attention, reading away. Finally she grabbed me by the arm and attempted to literally drag me out to the dance floor, at which I point I had to open my mouth and tell her to let go of my coddamn right arm! Talk about aggressive son. 

Buck’s is old news now, though. The new hotness is Stadium, a place a hated last year because this 300 lb woman was running loose around that place picking people up and tossing them around the way jugglers toss bowling pins through the air. I’m pretty sure at one point she had me, Kevin Lyde, and Matteen Cleaves in the air like a coddamn pizza chef would have his dough. 

Now that she’s gone, the crew and I spend a couple nights a week there. Since there is no longer the threat of the female beast roaming the area, some of the excitement is gone. Still, there are some sights to behold. Last time I was there, there were a group of kids wearing metallic jackets, parachute pants, and other 80’s, Michael Jackson / MC Hammer / Vanilla Ice type gear drinking their heads off. I, personally, could never drink that much while wearing such outfits because I would forget that I look like KAZAAM and I might go to Perkin’s (like Denny’s) at the end of the night dressed like a seven foot tall black genie. These kids really didn’t seem to care. Right after the bar closed, they went outside, turned the music up real high on their car stereo, and proceded to dance to the music. With all four car doors open, these guys drunkenly took over the parking lot and danced. First they danced to Right Said Fred’s “I’m Too Sexy For My Shirt,” then followed that performance up with a dance inspired by Spice Girls “Wannabe.” 

As you watch the video, you have to notice to subtlties such as the guy with the briefcase (obviously there are no briefs inside). He uses his breifcase as a dance prop so well that you have to assume that this whole thing was rehearsed, but then again, I saw how many shots he took in the bar, there’s no way he could remember that kind of choreography. 

It’s been about more than bars though. I’ve gotten out of the house during the day too. I went to watch some of the North Dakota high school state basketball tourney a couple weeks ago. I wouldn’t exactly call this place a hotbed of talent, but the kids played hard and they were big games so there was entertainment value. The high school atmosphere was crazy too. There’s nothing like watching the Dickinson “Midgets” compete. I personally took a liking to a sign that the Bismarck High “Demons” had on display: 

“Rah rah knee, kick em in the knee. Rah rah rass, kick em in the other knee.” Really? I found this sign to be awesome because it makes it seem like the school fight song calls for kicking of the knees. My high school fight song was not nearly as aggressive. 

Anyways, I was in Wal-Mart the other day (what else is new?) and I noticed something. Tell me if you notice the ridiculousness of the situation: 

 

I guess there are a few things funny about this. For starters, ETHNIC hair care? Coddamn that makes it easy. Instead of asking where the du-rags were located, I should have asked the customer service rep where the ethnic $#!T was at. It’s also funny because most of the things in the “ethnic” section are also found in various other parts of the store. Coco butter is also in the lotion section. Hair nets have no ethnicity and thus are also found on the next aisle as well. I guess somebody decided what black people needed and put it all right there. Boom. A lot of it aint even hair care stuff, it’s just black stuff. No other ethnicities are represented whatsoever. I wouldn’t be surprised if “Boyz In The Hood,” and “Friday” were also sold in the Ethnic hair care section right next to the Magnum XL’s. Lastly, and the funniest part about it, THERE ARE NO BLACK PEOPLE IN NORTH DAKOTA! There’s no need to sell all this when the Dakota Wizards are the only people who might buy it. I’ll tell you what this reminds me of: 

Tagged , ,

My Buddy Rell, Male Model.

I’m with 6 of my teammates. It’s movie night so we all have the popcorn out watching Superbad on my 73 inch T.V. Right after the fight scene outside the random party where the guy says that his “tiger got out of the cage”, I jump out of my seat and tell everyone to hold on. I grab the remote, still shocked that I almost forgot, take the T.V. off of DVD mode and put it back on cable box. I look through the channel guide until I find the Oxygen network. Boom. I set the DVR to record “Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency” which starts in 2 minutes, look around the room at the stunned faces staring back at me, then return to the movie.

My teammates didn’t understand what I did. Too bad for them. I knew full well that my pants down dancing parter Christian Prelle was making his T.V. debut that night. He was selected by Janice as one of her models to headline her newly created Latin division

Rell, as he called by those who know him, was my teammate and my roommate for a year at CAL. This is the same guy who was right along side me as I went through my “I’m gonna take a megaphone with me everywhere I go just to cause a scene” phase. This is the guy who used to cook SPAM like it was some sort of delicasy. This is the same guy who was a part of my very first music video. You will never see this video because it was a valentines day video where I said sweet nothings to my then girlfriend. I will tell you that we had a line that went:

“(my part) Zero and RELL with their two breezes,

like pasta shells with the finest cheeses,

(Rell’s part) when they’re away it aint no fun,

like mid summer, without the sun”

Rell is the only person will literally, always challenge me for the attention of the room. However, when we combine our forces, it is always an event. Whether it’s beating halo on co-op mode, watching The Hills (I call him Spencer and he hates it), or pants down dancing, we always get it done. We definitely bring out the cockiness in one another. In fact, we kind of have a credo that we took from The Sandlot: “Heroes live forever, but legends never die.”

With that said, this modeling thing has given me soooo much to make fun of him for. There are so many emails going back and forth within the former CAL hoops group that involve this guy right now. I mean this is the guy who would head butt a guy who looked at him the wrong way, now he’s taken on a whole new persona.

Pictures of RELL used to look like this:

 

Solid, right? Rell is a tough looking, party loving animal. These were the days when modeling was just a distant thought on an ambitious day. Now his pictures tend to look like this:

 

Notice the hair. That coddamn hair! Cmon Rell! I’m sure he didn’t have to make his hair look like that, but somewhere along the way he bought it. Oh well, it got him a big time modeling gig.

You may be reading this thinking that you haven’t really seen anything so bad. This is true. See, there were two before pictures, and there are two after pictures. I just need to set up the second one a little bit first. This picture was emailed to me the second it was discovered. Upon receipt, I immediately forwarded it to everyone I knew. I then proceeded to call Rell up and he didn’t answer…for obvious reasons. I wouldn’t answer my phone either if I discovered this:

 

Wow. The prices we pay for success! For starters, this picture is on a site called MEN.BGAY.COM. No way right now. No way. Then you look at this thing and you see that a guy has his head on Rell’s thigh. Then you see that this guy is wearing lace underwear, which is gross. Then you see that Rell has his arm on this guys side. Then you see that that same arm is rubbing against Guy #2’s balls. When he signed up for Janice Dickinson I doubt that he envisioned this picture ever being taken. Beyond that he definitely didn’t think it would ever surface, but it did.

So I’ve built Rell up and knocked him down. Now, I’ll hype him right back up. You need to watch this guys show. Seriously. I think it comes on Tuesdays at 9:30pm. If nothing else you get to see a former macho guy get naked and take funny pictures and witness the mental conflict he struggles with as he makes it big as a model. All of that, plus he hyped up the Boom Tho! movement in his Janice Dickinson profile.

To quote Rell when talking about himself: “We can’t all be legends. Someone has to sit on the curb and clap as I go by.”

I clap for this stuff every day.

Tagged , ,

The New Poem Game

We were all at Buffalo Wild Wings when one of my teammates told me that he wanted to talk to one of the waitresses. He didn’t know which one, and he didn’t know how he would do it, but he knew he wanted to. It seemed as though one week in North Dakota had quickly become too long to not attempt to find a woman. 

I was very willing to help. Why not? The guy obviously wanted to have fun with it and also hopefully take a phone number with his to-go box as we left the building. All 8 of us there that night knew that if I was to get involved that it could get a little bit ridiculous. I mean, let’s face it. Everybody had heard the rumors about my blog and my antics. New guys were curious and returning guys were astonished at how much hype tmrb had gotten since that championship game day back in April. 

My teammate finally asked me exactly what we should do. I told him that I have written poetry to a woman before. Although he didn’t know who Jenna Fischer was, he understood that if I wrote a poem to an actress, I could easily whip one up for a BWW server who was probably already feeling him. I agreed that I would write a poem as long as he agreed to give it to one of them — no chickening out. 

He asked the server of our table for something to write on. She brought back a pen and some blank receipts and handed them to him. He handed them to me and I got to work. Here’s what I came up with on the fly: 

Roses are red, violets are blue, 

I see a good match between me and you 

Dont mind this note, I do what I can, 

You be a woman, I’ll be a man 

Every time I see you, my heart sings, 

Thats why I come to Buffalo Wild Wings 

My boys don’t think I have what it takes, 

To enjoy a bowl of frosted flakes 

With you the next morning after out date, 

I’m just a mammal looking for a mate 

I dont know exactly how these things go, 

But, do you like me? 

Yes No 

My teammate showed the poem around the table and everyone laughed at the words, but now it was time to see if it was all jokes or if it would actually pay him some dividends. He got up and handed it to one of the servers he thought smiled at him when we came in. We all watched eagerly as she read the note and laughed to herself. Success? Had to be, but we wouldn’t be sure until she came back to our table. 

She had the server of our table bring back a note that read: 

“I think you’re handsome, charming, and sweet, but maybe your boys are right! You might not have what it takes to eat this momma’s frosted flakes!” 

I personally thought that the first note was successful. Her response seemed to not only challenge his ability to get her, but also kind of dared him to try. On top of all that were the sexual implications of the frosted flakes being eaten. We decided to fire back with something that relayed his ability, confidence, and sexual aptitude. He actually thought he should keep it sweet and innocent like the poem, but since I knew I was gonna blog it, I kept it hot to get a good reaction: 

“Well the thing about me you may not know is that I have a big spoon and an even bigger appetite!” 

We watched from a distance as she read the note. Her jaw dropped and she quickly closed her mouth. She peered over at us as we desperately tried not to laugh. Her eyes kind of lit up and she couldn’t hold back her smile. She scribbled something down for a while then had our server bring it back to us. It read: 

“The only thing that’s on is you, 

Simmer down baby and just enjoy the view. 

A big appetite is just not me, 

So put your big spoon in your own mouth where it needs to be! 

You’re a sweetheart! Thanks for the lines, 

but maybe some other time!” 

Damn. Lost it. My teammate accused me of taking it too far. It is entirely possible that I did take it too far, but hey, if he thought he could get her number by himself, then he should have written his own coddamn poem! 

Well, after this ordeal, we decided that whenever we go to a restaurant, that I will write a different poem for him to give to a waitress who he is eying. Thus, the poem game has officially begun. I’ll be sure to post all the poems and reactions here. 

Hollar.

Tagged , ,

Roll Dawgs

The title of this entry sums up nearly 3 weeks of happenings. I think some of the events described go back as far as my last night in New York, and go all the way to right now. I’ve got the Kanye West on and no T.V., that means it’s time for some bloggin’. Let’s do it. 

I’ll start by taking it back to that last night in NYC. You see, before my agent had even called me to tell me the news that my days in New Jersey were done, I was already heading out to the city to watch then #2 ranked CAL play Oregon State in football. Before I left the hotel I was cutting my hair as usual, when the guard slipped off of the clippers without my knowledge. I gave my head a few more strokes before I noticed that the guard was lying on the ground next to my foot. I looked back up at the clippers and sure enough my #1 cut had become a number zero. Damn. I looked at the mirror and immediately saw that my head was definitely giving that Charles Barkley, K.G., M.J. shine . It wasn’t that bad, but people who know black people’s hair would definitely notice my spot. I called up Clayton and told him what had happened. We agreed that if any of the white people at the CAL bar noticed my spot, then it was really bad, if they didn’t, then if was just a minor patch of hair lower than the rest. My main concern was that I was going to have to practice the next day and that the entire team (esp. Antoine Wright and Vince Carter) would make fun of me. Luckily, as I am a glass half full kind of guy, I was released before any of them had a chance to check me out. 

That night I did end up going to the bar to watch CAL play Oregon State. I met up with my boys Stevie P. and Cam Jones. 

 

We watched the whole game and they had no clue what had happened to the side of my head. Nice. 

After the game was over, a close loss that should have never been, we sat there stunned for about 20 seconds. The whole bar was sad, down, and in a state of disbelief. I started to let my mind wander. My team had lost, all but ensuring another Holiday Bowl bid (not anymore). I had just been released by the New Jersey Nets, basically sending me back to North Dakota. And, last but not least, I had a patch in the side of my head, causing me to avoid my black homies who would laugh at me. Dang, what a bad 4 hours. 

Well, all of a sudden, I realized that it could be worse. Why? Because long after everyone had moved on to thoughts other than the CAL game, there was this CAL fan sitting on the ground of the bar sulking. I mean this guy was literally sitting in a puddle of beer, half cross eyed, half teary eyed, mouth drooped open, arms and legs hanging lifelessly. Picture a homeless guy. Now imagine that this homeless guy is like newly homeless. This guy just realized he has nowhere to go and nobody to lean on and his body goes limp. That is how this guy looked. Just seeing him looking so pathetic over a CAL football game made me realize that I needed to pull myself together. I mean, if this guy ever gets cut by the Nets, and gets a bald spot in his head on the same day as a CAL loss, all of his friends should be on suicide watch. As for me, I still had fun on the night it all happened to me. Thanks to Stevie P and Cam Jones for helping me get it done that night. 

getting it done 

I flew back down to San Diego from the Newark airport ready to just relax for a little bit. Too bad the whole place was on fire: 

 

Our house ended up being fine, but a lot were not. A lot of people are still in need. If you want to help some of them out, click here: 

https://secure.salvationarmy.org/donations.nsf/donate?openform&projectid=USW_SC-07fire 

After a couple of days at home I went up to Huntington Beach to kick it with Rell and go up to the UCLA football game. The day before the game was spent beating Halo 3 and battling fiercely in Wii Tennis and Bowling. The night was another story. 

Rell and I went with Kam Walton (Luke’s cousin), and an all star cast of former Torrey Pines High ballers to some bars out in Newport Beach. When we got the the main bar, I wouldn’t exactly say it was cracking. Yea, there were a lot of people in there, but so what? These people didn’t know how to party. Well, not get it cracking like Rell and Reeks Benson (as Rell calls me) do. How do we do? Let me tell you. 

You can go back to the “Hollywood” entry and get a taste of what goes on when Rell and I hit the scene. Let’s just say we always dance. Always. This bar we were at in Newport was not a dance spot, even though there was a D.J. there. Rell and I started dancing with random girls to get the place cracking a little. Rell has a girlfriend, so his dancing wasn’t quite as enticing as mine, but let’s just say that after about 15 minutes this place started to liven up. 

Now Rell and I have another sort of tradition. Actually, let’s not call it a tradition, let’s call it an “if, then”. Let’s actually change that. We will call it an “if and only if, then”. If, and only if the party is crackin’, then Rell and I will probably do our pants off dancing. Basically it is just how it sounds. There were no pictures of that night, so i’ll show you the one from the “Hollywood” entry: 

 

As you can see, the pants are down and dancing continues to proceed. In college we had this spreading like wildfire. I now realize that that was then and this is now. In that bar in Newport, which was at this point crackin’, we began our pants off C-walk. You must understand that the C-walk is the easiest dance to do pants off because your feet are so close together and the pants kind off restrict your foot spacing. So we are in the bar making it happen, pants off C-walking away, and I’m telling you, everybody around (mostly female) was buying what we were selling. It was just getting more and more cracking. Out of nowhere, the music stops. It was kind of like a movie where the D.J. scratches the record to a stop. 

“What the hell are you guys doing?” the D.J. said into his mic, easily garnering the attention of everyone in the building. “This is why I don’t play hip-hop, because of guys like this! Security come and do something about this.” 

Right then, everybody (probably 200 people) turns and looks at Rell and me, who are trying our best to shimmy our pants back up. It was a lot easier for me because I was wearing Jeans that had a regular fit. I had mine up in about 3 seconds. Rell, on the other hand, was STRUGGLING. Ever since this guy became an underwear model (catch him on the new season of Janice Dickinson Modeling Show on Oxygen Network Dec. 4), he has been wearing these jeans that are just way too tight. There were two problems with his tight jeans: the D.J. refused to put the music back on until we had the pants back up, and Rell also wore some his designer underwear which had a downright gross bikini cut. I think that the only reason the D.J. stopped us was because of Rell’s designer briefs that were so0o0o disgusting. Security actually threw him out and let me stay…had to be the designers. I left anyways because we are a team and we both did the act. I just didn’t gross anybody out. 

Speaking of gross, Halloween didn’t get any better. I decided to steal my brothers ostrich outfit because it was money in the bank. Man on ostrich, so hot right now. I wasn’t the gross one though. I must warn you, this really is gross. Don’t look at the next two pictures if you think you will be grossed out. This is my boy Jason, and he was a tennis player for Halloween: 

 

Why he had to buy the fake balls and hang them like that I will never, ever understand. 

As for the rest of national dress-up day, I got it done up in the bay area. 

ride that ostrich young man 

 

clay rocks out with my Guitar Hero Guitar 

 

JGant once again getting harassed 

Seriously though, I thought JGant and I had talked about this. I mean, I had to sock him in the balls twice for crying out loud. But look at him. He is having the most fun ever isn’t he? Maybe I am a little shallow, but I know he can do better than this! I know it. If he just doesn’t care, then i’ll forward his myspace profile to all the girls who message me and they can dance the night away. 

Oh, and before I met up with him that day he sent me a Blackberry Message that said: “Rod you know i’ll wait for you. Can’t leave without my roll dawg!” 

I was very confused by this. I asked him what that meant? Did it mean like roll-out dawgs or what? He said: “I dont know its just what people say.” 

I said: “I dunno man that sound a lot like ROAD DAWGS.” 

He replied: “Oh yea! Thats what they must be saying.” 

What would I do without my ROLL DAWGS? 

I’ll end this entry by saying that college basketball is here. Check out my CAL bears. I think they will make some noise. 

Top 5 reasons to watch the CAL Bears: 

5. I went there, duh. You read my blog, watch my Bears coddamit! 

4. People sleep in the trees. Seriously. 

3. 2 first round (projected) draft picks 

2. You probably need a new team to get into anyways 

1. Devon Hardin (one of the draft picks) can get low!! 

Tagged , , ,

My Career is like Mike Tyson’s Punchout

I had this entry done a week ago. It was then that my computer pretended to run out of batteries and turned itself off. In any case, it’s here now. I was released by the Nets a week ago. Before I get into the Nintendo reference and my future, I’ll recap my last days in Jersey. 

2 weeks ago we had the open practice at Farleigh Dickinson University. I, not knowing anything about anything, expected to see a couple hundred people there. When the multiple thousands of people started packing the gym, I realized that people care more about the Nets than they do about the Austin Toros (D-League) who I was with this time last year. 

After our scrimmage, I got to really see how crazy fans are for NBA teams. Thousands and thousands of people were calling out the names of thier favorite players. I was sitting down icing my knees while the madness took place. I can imagine that if I was Vince Carter or Jason Kidd, I would have a serious problem responding to anyone who says my name at any time. I heard people yell out “Jason” over and over and over and over. Seriously, like 300 people at a time, all saying his name. People wanted to get autographs so badly I couldn’t believe it. 

It wasnt just J Kidd and Vince, people were calling out for autographs from guys like R Jeff, Boki Nachbar, Antoine Wright, Malik Allen, Jason Collins, Jamaal Magloire, Sean Williams, Josh Boone, Marcus Williams, Nenad Krstic, Mile Ilic, Jumaine Jones, Robert Hite, Eddie Gill and Mateen Cleaves. One name was not on that list — Rod Benson. I really thought a couple people would be hyped to see me, but they were more hyped to see everyone else which was cool. I just sat there with ice on my knee, waiting to go as autographs were signed and photo’s were snapped. 

Then, out of nowhere, I think I hear my name… 

“Rod! Hey Rod, come over here!” 

Nice, I thought. Finally a fan. Maybe he’s a TMRB reader. I decide to play it cool, as if to show that I was not that hyped. I wanted to look like I do this all the time. Get out of my seat slowly and the whole nine yards. By the time I turned around, I saw Rod Thorn chatting it up with somebody behind me. I kept my eyes open, just in case there was another guy, but no, he was clearly requesting Rod Thorn. Damn. 

A few minutes later my time finally came. Somebody yelled out my last name, so I knew it was official. This time I didn’t care at all about impressing anybody with nonchalance. I snapped my head around to look at and make eye contact with the group of young women who had called me out. I walked over enthusiatically and asked them what was up. 

“Can you get Josh Boone for us? He can’t hear us or something.” 

You’ve got to be kidding me. Ricodamdiculous. I walked over to Josh and told him what was up. 

“Oh yeah, I think I’m Facebook friends with them,” he says on his way over towards the girls. 

I then noticed that Jason was sitting a few seats away from me. I went and sat right next to him even though there was plenty of space to sit more comfotably. When he gave a look that seemed to question my decision to invade the personal bubble, I told him what was up. 

“The way I see it, if I sit close to you, people will have photo’s of me whether they like it or not. I’m bound to end up on youtube or myspace or something,” I confessed. 

On my way out of the gym, one guy asked for a picture with me. He said that he was a TMRB guy and that he just wanted a photo. Whoever you are, guy with the camera, thanks for legitimizing me. You’re a stand up guy. 

Anyways, I guess I should get into the reasons why I titled this entry what I did. I was riding to the airport with Vinny the Nets intern and we were dicussing how I repaired my broken Xbox. Somehow I brought up the fact that I love Ken Griffey Jr. Presents Major League Baseball. I can still hear Ken say “Hi, Im Ken Griffey Jr. Let’s play major league baseball.” 

The Griffey talk transitions to Super Smash Brothers and then to Mike Tyson’s Punchout. I tell Vinny that I had more trouble beating the Sandman than anybody else. He says that Soda Pop gave him the most trouble. All the reminiscing about the game got to thinking about it. Right then I had an epiphany — my career is just like that game. Let’s examine the facts.. 

Lets call me Little Mac. I’m a young man trying to come up. I have good people in my corner, and although I’m young and at times outmatched, I have heart, and I’m always smiling: 

I can remember back to high school hoops. It was so easy to dominate back then, because I was facing inferior competition…much like Mac in the minor circuit. It aint hard knocking out guys like Joe Glass and Piston Honda. 

 

Then there was college. Tougher competition made it tough to compete, especially early, but later once I got it figured out, the game slowed down and it again became easier. In the college game, you face guys who are good, but they have weaknesses. I can easily remember guys who I could exploit with ease. I was Little Mac and I faced guys like Don Flamenco, King Hippo, and Great Tiger. These are guys who will beat you if you don’t know their weaknesses, but are also easy opponents once they get exposed. 

 

Now I’m a pro bball player. I have been making strides on my game slowly, but surely. It’s by far the toughest competition. Guys up here don’t have clear weaknesses like before. Up here, especially for a guy like me, experience is key. When we had our preseason game at Philly, coach Frank told us to go through our normal routine and to meet up with 30 minutes to go before game time. I watched as Darrell Armstong had his coffee. I watched as Mateen Cleaves stretched. I watched Boki Bachbar get up a ton of shots. I then realized that I was the only one without a routine at all. I had no idea what I was supposed to do. This is not a crazy example, but it was a sign that I lack a certain amount of experience. It’s like trying to beat the Sandman all over again. There are certain things I gotta do and learn before I ever get a real crack at Mike Tyson (the NBA). 

Seriously though, coach Frank called me into his office the day after the preseason game and broke it down to me. He told me everything I already thought about why I was being released. He was very nice about it and professional. I know I need more strength, a given, but mainly I need more consistency, which stems from professionalism. Being a pro encompasses so many things. During camp I lacked confidence at times, aggressiveness, all the things that made me successful before. Veterans understand how to eliminate such thoughts. I think Malik Allen will have a good year this year and that the Nets will go far, because they have a lot of veterans who understand the meaning of what it takes to be a pro. I will be back in North Dakota learning how to work on a specific move, a routine, a signature thing about me that makes me a pro. 

In the end, experience is everything. You can watch all the late night cinemax you want, but until you actually have sex, you have no idea what you’re doing, right? I learned what the big show is all about and now I am prepared to take that final step. Im ready to beat the Sandman. I talked with the coach of the Dakota Wizards and he was enthusiastic about helping me help myself. He was enthusiastic about the fact that I was enthusiastic. He was ready to get to work to take my experience and talent and turn it into a skill set that translates directly to what I will be as an NBA player. Barring some sort of miracle contract overseas, I’ll be doing just that — taking the final step towards the ultimate goal. 

Well, currently my family is on the brink of evacuation down in San Diego. I’m in LA safe and sound, but a number of homes of people I know have already started to burn. We live right on the water, so hopefully I’ll get a call tomorrow telling me that everything is fine. If not, I know there are things more important than the material things that could go down in flames (well, my xbox and my wii are with me, so they are safe). My Vince Carter autographed shoe has less meaning now that I’ve shared a locker space with the guy. My Tiger Woods autograph became less important the day I dropped 24 on Stanford and he was there to see it. My family, my health, and my future are in the works now. I think it will all be ok, but who knows. Sorry to end on a somber note, but it is very odd blogging when my broither calls me to say that there is ash raining from the sky, which is orange and black, and that he has packed up eevrything he cares about. Like I said, we will see. 

Tagged , , ,

East Coastin’ Part 2

I’ve now been in New Jersey for a month. I’m gonna be honest with you. I probably spent 20 hours a day inside the hotel during the week. The other four hours were spent in the gym. After reading both of my Patterson books in the first few days, I needed something more to do. First, it was watching different episodes of The Hills After Show online. I even watch “An American Tale”… twice. I know the songs “Never Say Never” and “Somewhere Out There” by heart now. Then, it was onto other various things on MTV.com such as casting and what not. I figure if they have a “True Life: I Live in a Hotel” or something like that, I should be a shoe in. Now it’s time to recap the whole month in one post. So what if it’s a long post… deal with it. 

Anyways, one day I was just laying around, staring out at the NYC skyline, when I remembered how fun xbox 360 used to be. I remembered the good times xbox and I used to have. I kind of felt like it was an ex-girlfriend who gave me the “it’s not you it’s me” line. It just gave me 3 red lights, peaced, and never came back. Well, I decided that enough was enough. I decided to take action and get my girl back. 

I went online and found a ton of results on XBOX 360 and the 3RLOD (three red lights of death). As it turns out, the 3RLOD is a ridiculously common thing with the 360. Lucky for me there were plenty of tutorials on how to fix that bad boy. There were many schools of thought on the 3RLOD, many of which dealt with cooling and heat sink issues. I basically read a couple tutorials, selected the one for me, and got to work. Considering the fact that I used to build PCs from components, I felt that I could get the job done. 

image

As you can see, I took my box completely apart. What you see is the motherboard outside of the casing with the DVD drive and fans removed. In the first photo you also see all the tools that I bought from the Secaucus, New Jersey Home Depot, a blueberry muffin, some packages of mustard, and a coke. The muffin came in handy during the hard work as there was quite a bit of trial and error. I like muffins. If you dont like a good blueberry muffin you dont like rainbows, sunshine, smiling babies…. you dont like anything. 

So, I actually had to go back to home depot about 3 times to get the correct parts to do this. The hotel actually has a shuttle that takes me about a quarter mile away from home depot, where I get out and walk the rest of the way, then wait 2 hours for the shuttle to come back and pick me up. Over the course of 3 days, I spent about 6 hours waiting for shuttles to pick me up from the waiting spot. 

Well, after I finally got it all right, I put my box back together and turned on some guitar hero 2… 

image

I dont know if you can see it, but that little green light used to be 3ROLD. It is now a glowing green symbol of hard work, freedom, and entertainment. I played guitar hero for about an hour, then I shuttled back over to best buy and picked up Halo 3 and Madden 08. I havent played guitar hero again, and I barely opened the halo box. What I have done is played a full season of Madden with The Titans and Vince Young. I also beat Sean Williams repeatedly last night. After 4 straight losses, you would think he’d understand that I am simply better than him, but he hasnt. Point is, my weekdays were now filled with blissful, Madden 08 joy. Maybe I’l start Halo soon, but who knows? 

Weekdays taken care of, I headed out to Manhattan and Brooklyn on the weekends to get my fill of the NYC lifestyle. One of the things I have started doing is watching college football at a bar on saturdays. Now, there is a reason for this. 3 weeks ago, I was invited by some friends to watch the Chargers vs. Bears game at a local bar. Turns out the bar was a Chicago Bears fan bar or something. I was in the mix with a hundred Bears fans who literally cussed me out when I jumped up in excitement. The next week, we were looking for a place to watch some college football and we walked into a Notre Dame fan bar. Not wanting to see grown men cry, we left and ended up at a Auburn fan bar. Finally I decided to find out where the #3 Cal fans go to watch the Bears play. Turns out there is a bar on 19th and 1st ave. in Manhattan where the Cal Alumni Association of New York gets together to watch the bears. I have now been there 2 weeks in a row. 

Game days at M.J. Armstrong’s Bar. 

image

After the Oregon game, I went with my boys B-Walk and Clayton down to world trade center ground zero. You cant see much down there, but thats the point. The hole in the middle of the financial district is pretty ricoddamndiculous.  

The sign says “Reflect”. I did just that. I got reminded of why it’s scary to live in New York. Just a week before I was standing in front of the Waldorf Astoria hotel, trying to hail a cab in the midst of hundreds of police, secret service, and firemen. I guess the UN Summit requires a high amount of security. All it means to me is that I was too close to the danger. When I noticed what was going on with all the police and whatnot, I stopped waiting for a cab. I jogged a couple blocks away and started waiting there… further away from the kaboom. 

After visiting ground zero, I went to go meet up with my boy Steve Panawek at my other boy Adam Duritz’s house. 

I know what youre thinking: “Adam Duritz is your boy?” Yes he is. 10% because I played at Cal and he is a Cal fan. 90% because he already knows it’s boom tho. I asked him if he would be a part of my next video (should I choose to make one) and he said he was mad that he wasnt in the second one. Then I asked him where the bathroom was and he said “Use the rockstar bathroom down to the left.” Let me tell you first and foremost, I have never taken photos of another man’s bathroom, and I dont intend to do it again, but sometimes you gotta do it: 

 image

image

I couldnt help but get a picture of what a 7X platinum plaque really looks like… and half the time this one smells like human feces because it’s in his guest bathroom of all places. 

Enough of the nonsense. I have been out here for a month playing basketball too. Ive seen all kinds of guys come and go. Matt Frieje? Gone. Mateen Cleaves? Here all month. It’s funny because way back in January, I went on my blog and said Mateen Cleaves had a rather large head, among other things. Now, he is one of my favorite guys around here, although I don’t see him fitting into a Yankees Cap anytime soon. 

As the month went on, more and more guys started coming back from their summer places and showing up at the gym. I knew that a day would come where I would see J Kidd. I had a talk with my man Clayton about it a couple weeks ago. I told him that I was just gonna let the whole cousin thing go. I told him that I was sure Jason had enough family and friends without another random guy trying to claim things. Clay said that I should start a conversation based around the fact that we both attended Cal, and that from there, it would be a lot easier to lead into family business. Well, one day, I was walking through the training room and there Jason was. He was just sitting around relaxing. I kind of froze up so I kept walking as if to give the impression that I was used to seeing a big time guy like him all the time. Right then he says hi to me. I say hi back and keep it moving. 

I was almost out the door when the trainer, who was seated next to him said “So what’s this about you two being cousins?” 

Jason looked up at him and said “What? What are you talking about?” 

Oh no, I thought. Bad timing. No introduction, no Cal conversation starter, just a confused J Kidd looking at me for an explanation. 

“Oh umm yea, I guess we are supposed to be related,” I said. The classic downplay. “I was told we were cousins or something like that. I mean, thats what my grandfather said. So, I mean, we could be. Who knows?” 

“Ok well what’s his name?” 

He wasn’t supposed to ask any questions. This was not going well on my end. 

“Clarence Kidd,” I answered with a shaky tone. 

“Ok. Where is he out of?” 

More questions. 

“Shreveport Louisiana. Like I said, you never know, right?” 

“Yea, you never know.” 

I rushed out awkwardly. I was just completely unprepared to deal with the matter. He just showed up that day out of the blue. I went back into the locker room and sent Clay a text letting him know that Plans A and B had gone awry. I informed him of Plan C and the under-sell I used due to my lack of preparation. Clay informed me that there would be plenty of opportunities to not look like an idiot in front of him. 

The first of those opportunities was actually the very next day. We had a coaches versus players softball game at Yankees stadium. Thats right, Yankees stadium. 

image

 

The stadium, the legends, me, and my Nets softball jersey 

Anyways, before the game, it became clear that some basketball players were never meant to swing a bat or wear a glove. I wont name names. In any case, since I have a solid baseball track record (ENC Little League Champ, ‘96), I played first base. Before I went over there, J Kidd asked me if I could catch. I let him know that I could, of course. He was playing short stop, meaning I would be counted on to get the job done. 

When we got up to bat for the first time, Jason set up the order with guys he could count on at the top of the order. I was somewhere around 8th in the lineup. 6 RBI later, everyone knew that I had skills. 

Up by one run with 2 outs in the top of the 9th, there was a hard ground ball hit right at Eddie GIll who was playing second. He fielded it, stepped on second, and threw the double play ball right to my open glove. It popped right out and both runners were safe. Sussman, who was working the PA, says to the whole stadium “Are you gonna put that in the blog?” 

I could tell that everyone was now beginning to second guess my little league ability. What people failed to realize was that the ball was huge and the gloves were way too small and not broken in. First base may have been the toughest position to play. 

Next batter rips one down the left field line…just foul. Real coddamn close. Next pitch he hits a hard ground ball up the middle. J Kidd runs about 20 feet and fields the ball while running left. Still running, he hurls the ball towards me and I can tell its gonna be a bang bang play. Suddenly, I realize that the ball is about to bounce about 4 feet in front of me. I stretch out as far as I can, reach my glove, and I feel the ball hit my glove as I whip my arm back up. I look at the glove and the ball is in there… just barely. Game time. How do you spell redemption? R-O-D. Take that Sussman. I hear J Kidd say something about a Cal connection. Although it was just softball, it was something more at that moment. It was a couple cousins making plays at Yankess stadium. Just call him Jeter. Call me Pujols. Call us the Cal connection (his words not mine). 

After the game, workouts continued as usual. R Jeff showed his face, Vince Carter started coming in, everybody was getting in good work. 

I talked with my mom on the phone the other day and she was asking a lot of motherly questions. She asked me “Does that boy Carter know that you have his shoe autographed?” 

“No mom.” 

“Well are you gonna tell him?” 

“NO MOM.” 

“Well wouldn’t it be funny if you did?” 

“Mom, I gotta go.” 

I felt like she was being ridiculous. Well, wouldnt you know it? Next day I am taking the sticker off the inside of my practice shorts. Vince, who sits right next to me in the locker room (or in my chair if he feels like it, who am I to tell him to move?), tells me that I can just rip the whole tag right off. I rip the tag off easily and give a look that says “Impressive”. He then says “Hey, ten years.” 

“Ten years? You havent been in the league 10 years,” I say to him. 

“This is my tenth year. Yea, year number ten.” 

“Haha thats funny beca-” 

He cut me off. 

“No, I don’t want to know what you were doing ten years ago,” he said laughing. 

“It’s not that, it’s just… I have had your shoe autographed in my room since I was 14. I remember when i got it. I was so happy. I was like ‘Man…VC wears these? Awesome.’” 

“You got them as a gift?” 

“Yea. It was like the best day I had that whole year. You have been making dreams come true for 10 years now I guess.” 

“Well just call me Make-A-Wish then.” 

I guess my mom was right. I brought it up and we both got a laugh. But it is crazy to think about sometimes. I have 3 autographs in my house that matter: Tiger Woods on my junior high ID card, Kareem Abdul Jabbar on a basketball, and Vince Carter on a shoe. When I play miniature golf with Tiger, maybe we will have a similar talk. 

…And then there’s Jamaal Magloire. The thing about him, what makes him blog worthy I should say, is that he is just like Lil John. No, he doesn’t have dreadlocks. No, he doesnt rap (to my knowledge). No, he is not from the ATL. Actually, he is probably nothing like Lil John. He is actually more like Dave Chappelles version of LIl John. If you have ever seen “A Moment in the Life of Lil John”, then you know that Lil John talks with the utmost clarity, calm, and annunciation most of the time, but every now and then he gets crunk and goes “YEEAAAHHHH”, “WHAATTTTT?”, or “OOOKAAAAYYYY!”. Basically there are two sides to him. The first time I played on the same court as Jamaal, I noticed that he is kind of a wild man. He plays like a beast, but that aint the half. He literally yells out different words depending on the situation kind of the way Lil John does. He was yelling and grunting and causing a scene. Immediately after the game, he walked over to me and said, in the most perfect english I may have ever heard, “Hello. My name is Jamaal. Aren’t you so excited for the upcoming season? That’s when the money comes.” 

I was astonished. I was thinking that there is no way this is the same guy. Its like seeing the incredible hulk turn back into Bruce Banner. This guy is so animated that you dont even have to watch the game to know whats going on. He gives his own play by play. I have composed a short list of these sounds/sayings and what they mean: 

1. “HEEEEEYYYYYYYYY!” 

When you hear this, it means that he was just fouled, probably while attempting a shot. 

2. “NOOOOOOOOOO!” 

This means he has just blocked a shot. 

3. “MIIINNNNNNNEEEE! 

Sounds similar to the seagulls from “finding nemo”. You hear this when he grabs a rebound. 

4. “YESSS!” 

He is open. Get him the coddamn ball. 

Now, he can combine these as well. For example: if you hear “NOO MIINNEE” it means he blocked a shot and rebounded it. You get what I’m saying? 

Onto other things… The new Ping Pong power rankings are out. Now that everyone is around, here is how the guys who wield the paddle fare: 

1. John Zisa (BBall Operations Assistant) 

2. Jumaine Jones 

3. Eddie Gill 

4. Bostjan Nachbar 

5. Gary (Equipment Guy) 

6. Rod Benson 

7. Sean Williams 

8. Vince Carter 

I have a lot of potential to move up in the rankings, but I have too many unforced errors. My 7’3” wingspan helps me cover a lot of ground, but my backhand is still too weak to compete. I would actually be at the bottom of the list seeing how Vince has yet to play, but since he walks by everyday and makes comments about my game, I have ranked him below me. Until he steps up and accepts my challenge, he has nothing to say to me. 

Well, training camp has officially started. It was cool on media to see my name on a real NBA jersey. 

better than ordering one on NBA.com 

After the media hype was over, it was time to get to work. Coach Frank has basically given me more information to learn in 2 days than I have ever had in my life. Hes a funny guy off the court, but once that ball goes up, its all bout the bidness. It’s kind of like taking a summer school class where you have to learn a year worth of info in 4 weeks… if that class was Molecular Toxicology. Unlike the veterans, the hardest part for me is not physical, it’s mental. Not unlike any other camp guy, I’ve been yelled at, and I’ve been congratulated. As the week goes on, I have to get the yells down and the pats on the back up. 

The fact of the matter is, the guys at this level are all great at something. Smart, fast, hardworking, athletic… something. After my first two days of my first training camp, it becomes easier to see the areas that I excel at at this level, and the things I have to work on and get better. It’s much more black and white to me now. 

My Agent, Bill, and I talked about this at length a couple weeks ago. He told me about the process and how it all works. We may have talked for like 20-30 minutes. I dont think we have ever talked that long on the phone. It showed me that he has my best interest at heart. I think he may have been a bit worried because some other guys call me and try to sway me to sign with them and go to europe, but if theres one thing I know, its loyalty. I’m all about the entree and not the sides haha. Anyways, my point is that Bill had some foresight into my camp experience and let me know how these things go. He told me to stick with it regardless what happens here, and that I will be successful regardless. To quote him: “When you make it, we are gonna get you a lot of money. You just gotta make it.” I like the sound of that Bill. 

Speaking of Bill… today Bill Parcells was there watching us practice. Mann its so tight seeing and meeting people you respect so much on a daily basis. I hit a jumper and I remember thinking “Big Tuna saw me knock down the J, sweet.” I then wondered what I would say if I had a chance to talk to him. I realized that the questions I have were already asked… 

Lastly, I want to go back to Sussman. You may know him from a little blog on the front page of NJnets.com. It’s called “Sussman Sez”. The first day I was at the Nets facility, he walks up to me and sez “George Benson! We need to go 1 on 1 in blogging.” Since then I have been looking at his blog. It would be cool to go 1 on 1 with him, but I just don’t think it’s fair. I mean you can actually UNDERSTAND mine. Why? Because I don’t write in stream of consciousness. What is stream of consciousness? Wikipedia says “Stream of consciousness is a literary technique that seeks to portray an individual’s point of view by giving the written equivalent of the character’s thought processes, either in a loose interior monologue, or in connection to his or her sensory reactions to external occurrences.” In other words, I have no idea what Sussman is trying to say. Suss, if you wanna go 1 on 1, you have to play fair and make sure I can process what exactly is going on in your head baby! 

If you read Sussman Sez, let me know if which blog you prefer. I will be keeping tally. 

Also, there is an open practice on Saturday, if you’re there, say hi. If not, send me birthday presents on Oct 10th. I have the same birthday as Brett Favre… thats how I know Im destined for greatness. 

Long post, I know, but hey… you read it right?

Tagged , , ,

Year 24, day 1.

The 24th year of my life began like every other day this past month. I woke up, checked my facebook (already flooded with happy birthday messages), got dressed, played a game of Madden (beat the Colts 77-0, on all madden) and went to practice. 

Once I got to the practice facility, things took a turn. There were cameras waiting outside when I got out of the team van. The cameras actually filmed me going into the building. I know that you probably assume that they should want to follow me in, since I am one of nineteen players that they are supposed to film, but Rod Benson is on a lower spot on the totem pole than some of the big time guys, so I was very surprised. 

I got into my gear, had a delicious Gatorade energy shake, and got my ankles taped. I have to reiterate how good these things are, the Gatorade shakes. Every time a baby laughs, I believe that the tears of joy that stream down their faces are collected by Gatorade scientists, mixed together with such wonderful ingredients as uncooked cake batter and sucrose syrup, and put into a wonderful green can. Remember 9/11? Yea, the exact opposite of that. I digress. 

Once everyone was ready for practice, coach Frank called us all in for our usual pre-practice circle talk thing. With everyone paying the utmost attention coach Frank said he had to make an announcement. 

“Guys, when one our own gets recognition, we should all be proud.” 

No way he is talking about me. No way. 

“It just so happens that one of our guys is the very best at what he does.” 

He HAS to be talking about me. Really? 

“Rod Benson…” 

Yes! 

“…has been recognized for having the #1 blog in professional sports. I read it in the newspaper yesterday.” 

Not knowing what to do, I gave a slight fist-pump. It was like MJ in the first quarter or Tiger Woods on the third green. Not the big time fist pump signaling victory, but a subtle, less energetic pump that says “there’s still more work to do.” I wish I was recognized by ESPN as the best basketball player in the history of the world, but blogging would have to do. Right then, in that moment, blogging definitely would do. 

“Furthermore, it is his birthday today. Rookies have to sing happy birthday to him. Who are the rookies? Sean, and who else? I….guess it’s just Sean. Sean, go ahead.” 

“Right now? In front of all the cameras?” Sean obviously didn’t believe coach was serious. Everybody else on the team chimed in, making it pretty serious. 

“Oh yea.” 

“Right now, gotta sing.” 

“Lets go rook. Happy Birthday. Sing it to Rod.” 

All I could do was laugh. It may have been more awkward for me that it was for Sean. I don’t think he really had any problems doing it, because when he finally did, he seemed to enjoy his off-tempo, deep voiced, slightly mis-worded rendition of the birthday tune. 

After practice, we split up into groups of 5 or so for an event called “Paint the Town.” Basically, each group went to a different location and shook hands and signed autographs and whatnot. My group (Krstic, Boone, Ilic, and Armstrong) went to a McDonalds about 20 minutes away from the practice facility. 

We all washed our hands and went to the back. They showed us the fridge and freezer rooms, the rooms where all the happy meal toys are kept, and then had us make a big mac. It took Darrel Armstrong 1 minute, 59 seconds to make one. Boone it took 1:29. Rod Benson got that bad boy done in 1:09. Should I be so celebratory? Yes. I should. 

I would say how long it took Mile to get his done, but he didn’t seem to comprehend too much. He seemed pretty content with the helium tank… 

 

We then got behind the register and made some sales. 

I was working the drive thru. I decided to sprinkle a little sunshine on the drive thru customers by placing a happy meal toy in their bag regardless of their order. I figure they will be so happy to have gotten a toy, that they will always return to that McDonalds. I was showing them that this particular McDonalds knows how business is done. 

Well, as it turns out, the McDonalds people knew that it was my birthday somehow. I was pleasantly surprised to see that they had a cake all set up with candles and whatnot: 

They sat me down in a chair while all the employees and PR people sang happy birthday to me. None of the players sang because only rookies sing. I guess. When the singing ended, one of the employees threw the cake in my face. I couldn’t believe it. There was literally cake coming through my nostrils into my throat. It was gross. They brought me a bunch of napkins and whatnot so I could clean my face off. After about two minutes of wiping, I thought I had it all off… 

 

Wrong. I continued to clean my face off in the bathroom for a few minutes more before it was really all gone. 

I got back to the hotel later and I thought to myself that I had not yet done anything for my birthday. I had to do something. At about 8pm, I got into a cab and went to Wal Mart. What better place to spend an hour or two of my birthday than at the local Wal Mart? It’s full of gifts I can give to myself if the mood strikes. In fact, I did buy a gift for myself. I bought a new digital camera that is “YouTube Approved”. What does this mean to you? It means that my video making is back. A third chapter in the boom tho series? Dont count it out! 

I left Wal Mart feeling satisfied with my purchase. I began to walk around aimlessly, when my brother called me. He informed me that he has now purchased 2 different halloween costumes. His first costume is the king from Burger King. Sounds pretty cool. His second is an inflatable ostrich that, when worn correctly, looks like a man is riding an ostrich with his legs flailing behind him. Looks like lil bro is on the right track to follow my footsteps. He purchased his costumes a month early, he chose funny and inventive costumes, and he chose two of them, obviously understanding that you dont just party once on halloween. Props lil bro, props. I told him that I intend to be the Kanye West bear. You know the bear with the little backpack and whatnot? Yea, that would be costume one. Costume two, the real costume, I figured I would be a fat guy. Like a fat version of Rod Benson. Kind of like Eddie Murphy and the Klumps. I would wear a fat suit, of course, but also get fat face makeup. I assume that I wouldn’t have that much fun being fat and hot with makeup all over my face, but it would be hilarious, which is all I care about. 

After I got off the phone with the bro, I walked past a movie theater. I stopped, thought about it, then walked back to the ticket office to see a movie. The only movie playing at 9pm was Mr. Woodcock. I bought my ticket and walked on in. I think there were about ten screens in this theatre, yet I was the only person in the whole building. Seriously. 3 employees and 1 total customer — me. I went into my actual theatre to see Mr. Woodcock, and nobody else was in there. I’ve never been to a movie by myself before, let alone a 9pm showing with nobody else in attendance. It was kind of like having a private screening or something. 

I yelled out “I guess nobody cares if I leave my ringtone on, right?” Of course there was no response. It was nice in a way. I used my phone, I laughed when things were funny and didnt fall into the trap of mob laughter. You know… laughing when something really isnt funny, but since everyone else is laughing, you get caught up in the moment and give an artificial laugh. No studio audience for me on that night. 

I finished my night off with a call from my mom who said that the NBA TV guys called me intelligent. She then said that she always knew I was smart because I was the only newborn she knew who could hold their own bottle. Interesting. 

Back at my hotel room that night, I did my best to recall every birthday I ever had… 

My 22 other birthdays (minus 1-4, which I dont remember): 

5: Got remote control car, which was cool except my brother got one too.. on my birthday. I never forgave grandma for that. 

6. Got “Contra” on Nintendo. Awesome. 

7. Won the paper airplane contest at day care with a design I learned from older kids the night before. 

8. Dont Remember.. probably because I was consumed with trying to learn my coddamn times tables. 

9. Got “Tecmo Bowl” on Nintendo. Awesome. 

10. Got a new lot of Frank Thomas baseball cards as well as my A-Rod rookie and a Mickey Mantle. 

11. Dont remember. Odd. I will blame excessive amounts of the newly released “Rice Krispies Treats” for this. 

12. Camping with the homies and fishing for trout. Also, got my first AOL screen name and entered chat rooms pretending to be a 14 yr old named Shaun. I had a “14 year old girl named Stacey” sending me letters from Seattle. She loved safeway chicken nuggets, it was what we had in common. It was all good until mom saw a letter and banned me from the computer. 

13. First set of Golf clubs. 

14. Snowboarding in Big Bear. 

15. Broke my wrist snowboarding in Big Bear, thus ending my snowboard career. I was also called out for being the only black guy to go snowbarding, being 6’7” at that, and consequently miss basketball season. After Jeff (my AAU coach) called me out, I quit boarding and focused on hoops. That talk led me to college basketball. 

16. Took a trip to Santa Barbara with our high school girls volleyball team. It was on this trip that I discovered dance music beyond Jock Jams. DJ Sammy – Heaven… get on that. 

17. Dont remember. I blame College recruiters for this. 

18. First day of practice at CAL. I nearly fainted due to exhaustion. 

19. Quiet night rebuilding my computer. 

20. “Rod-Fest” as it was dubbed by my man Prelle. The greatest party ever thrown, basically. People danced on my futon and broke it, and I wasnt mad about it at all. Junior year was the greatest year ever. 

21. Cal vs. UCLA football at the Rose Bowl. Although we lost, it was one of the greatest days in Rod Benson history. 

22. JGant, Clay, Marty, Devon, and many more gettin it done in Berkeley. There are photos of this night, but I wont show them to you. 

A year from now, I will have to do something spectacular. Until then… 

Tagged , ,