Posts Tagged ‘Los Angeles

23
Jun
09

The Adventure of Kaliphornya in Wonder Land err Angel Stadium

This past weekend for fathers day I took a ball game in with my Dad and the rest of my family.  It was the first time I had ever been to Angels stadium and they were playing my favorite team the Dodgers.  Having the best record in baseball and our ace on the mound things were looking good to start the night.

As we found our seats, I felt like I was in Disney Land.  Now I know that Disney does own the Angels, but come on the stadium has a movie set feel to it, something fake.  The first thing that really jumps out at you in the stadium is how lame center field is.  They have this waterfall like fountain gushing from a big fake rock shaped in an A.

I thought splash mountain was at Disney Land

I thought splash mountain was at Disney Land

Directly to the right of the fountain is nothing.  I am guessing they were going to use this space to promote splash mountain but ran out of funds.  Could you imagine all the seats and coin the Angels franchise could make if they tore out their uber lame fountain and the great abyss?

Moving onward.  From the moment we arrived at the stadium vendors were still selling those damn rally monkeys.  I know the rally monkeys were cool when the Angels beat the Giants in the World Series but seriously that was like what, seven years ago?  Boy was I in for a surprise.

Thats super cool.....No realy it is....

Thats super cool.....No realy it is....

Once game time rolled around the stadium started to fill up like any other sporting event in southern California.  Everyone was casually late.  My seats were up in the nosebleeds behind the home team dugout along the third base line.  Because the Dodgers were playing the Angels, there was a very mixed crowd of fans.  Going into the ball game, my pops and I had several beverages because we could not bring ourselves to pay eight dollars for a keg cup of beer.  Everyone else around us, well they did not have the same thought process as us.

Towards the end of the first inning, two rows in front of where me and my father were sitting, four women showed up.  These women were large, rude, and plain obnoxious.  Now I am not one to knock on peoples weight, but in the good nature of painting a picture for you the reader, I would have to say they all could easily have gone on the biggest loser scale and topped a thousand pounds, let alone be contestants for next season.  I will come back to these women later.

My seat was on the aisle, which you would think was great, but man did this suck.  I have never had to stand up and sit down at a ball game more in my life to let people out and in.  I was averaging four to eight squats every half inning.  What is the deal?  Can these people not hold their bladder?  It was armature hour in the ball park.

By the time the fifth or sixth inning rolled around the Angels blasted on the jumbo tron the same monkey that was in outbreak, and all of a sudden you hear the crowd go crazy.  It was dressed in an Angels uniform jumping up and down on a table, with the words rally monkey under it.  Honestly this looked like the most low budget video clip I have ever seen, yet all the Angels fans were loving it.  After every base hit they would flash this damn thing up on the screen.  I was curious if everyone was going to stand up and start flapping their arms as wings like in Angels in the Outfield.

Honestly if you could have seen they way these people reacted to the monkey you could not help but laugh at them.  I think there is a reason the broadcasters on television do not show this.  It is a little outdated.  While all of this was going on I was thinking why is this damn outbreak monkey still around?  Have they not got something new yet?  This would be similar to going to Dodger stadium ten years from now and looking out in left field and seeing Manny wigs everywhere, or in 2010 if Cavs fans are still throw up powder before tip off even though LeBron peaced out of there as fast as he could.  It is outdated.

It was a tight ball game going into the seventh inning stretch.  My attention was focused on the jumbo tron where Alfred Hitchcock’s infamous shower scene from Psycho was being played.  Being the video geek that I am, I was informing my father that for this 48 second scene he used 78 cuts which was truly Hitchcock at his best.  Once we got to the point where they were going to show the dude with the knife there it was, the fuckin rally monkey screamin.   This crowd erupted as though their team just won the NBA finals, wait they did, but you get the picture.   Down with the Sickness was blasting as the fans were going bonkers.  I could not believe what I was seeing.  I thought I was in a wonder land or something.  A tiny ass outbreak monkey was the sole reason for pumping up this stadium.

Anyhow, that damn critter must have worked because the Dodgers went down by a run and eventually lost the game.  By the time the seventh inning was over, booze was talking left and right.  Time to get back to the grande chicks.  These chicks in front of us were Angels fans and they were wasted.  Every inning all four of them would get up and each would come back with two beers no joke.  That means each of these chicks has fourteen beers at ten bucks a piece (They had the big cups that light up).  That is an extra $140.00 they spent on beer plus the $40.00 dollars for tickets.  One of these biggins got into it with a dodger fan.  She was all up in this guys face with her middle finger less than an inch from this dudes nose.  I don’t know what he was saying but man I bet it was an easy target.  While she was acting all hood rat some fan from behind us threw a whole cup of beer at the row of dodger fans.  Instantly the Dodger fan turned around and threw his beer bottle at the group of Angel fans he had been talking trash with the whole game.

People started yelling and it was starting to look like the Palace of Auburn Hills with beer flying.  All we needed was Artest and Stephen Jackson in the crowd.  There really is nothing like watching a bunch of fat drunk baseball fans going at it and protecting their team as though it is their family.  They were more worried about who was louder and who had the last word than the damn game.  Luckily enough people jumped in and broke the opposing parties up before there were any ejections.  As the “big female crew” left all the way down they were yelling Dodger fans are pussies.  The whole way out they did this.  I felt like going up to them and saying hey, “you realize with that $140.00 of beer you just drank, you could have been sitting in the “diamond club” which are the seats directly behind home plate.”  I guess everyone has their priorities.

All in all this experience like Orange County and their boobs seemed fake.  Nothing wrong with that but like the teams name Los Angeles Angels, its time to get your own identity.  Get away from the Disney theme like the Ducks did, ask the city of Anaheim if they will allow you to return as the Anaheim angels opposed to the Los Angeles South team.  And for God sake, get a new them for your team other than the outbreak monkey.  If you could really just step back and look at how lame that guy is you would be embarrassed.  Ohh yeah and Kobe was cheering for the Dodgers.

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15
Jun
09

Between the Curves

Los Angeles local band Fight From Above has officially released their very first music video “Between the Curves.”  Last weekend was the video release party and I have heard nothing but good things from the band and fans alike.  With the release of LA Kids it is now their third album to drop and it only has gotten better over time.

Whether you are driving down the 405 or throwing back Whiskey with a bunch of friends, their music is a perfect compliment to a good time.  I have had the luxury to meet the band and these guys are exactly like their music.  Very chill yet different.  Something even cooler that I bet you did not know about the band is the fact that they filmed, edited, and produced the whole music video.  You need to check these guys out HERE and make sure to go out and get their music.
If you a fan of the pop rock/ indie rock you will not be disappointed. Check out the music video below.

03
Jun
09

Don’t worry Orlando, we have you covered

Besides being healthy in the NBA finals, the biggest difference from last year opposed to this year for the Lakers, is the variety of teams they played against and styles they saw in the post season.  Each round was a different style and match up that the Lakers had to play against and make adjustments.  These various styles thus have prepared them to match up and know how to play the Orlando Magic.

The Magic starting five for the post season has consisted of Rafer “Skip to my Lou” Alston, Rashard Lewis, Courtney Lee, Hedo Turkoglu, and Dwight Howard.  Lets start by breaking down each player and who they most resemble from the previous teams the Lakers have faced.  Alston is most like his young counter part who took over his spot in Houston, Aaron Brooks.  The guy is a great ball handler and very quick.  Like Brooks this guy will take an open shot so you have to stick home with him.  I feel that Fish will do a decent job on him, but we will be looking to let Farmar get most of the minutes due to his speed on the defensive end.

Courtney Lee is shooting 45% from the field in the playoffs and 30% from down town.  Out of the four shooters on the floor for Orlando he is the one Kobe will be helping off of.  We want to make him beat us.  On the offensive end this is where we will have our best mismatch with him defending Kobe.  I find Lee very similar to Ronnie Brewer of Utah.  Kobe will be free to roam around and help with other defensive assignments simialr to what he did in Utah.

Rashard Lewis, is big and can shoot lights out.  He reminds we of a better shooting Lamar Odom.  Lewis shoots well for a big man and spreads the floor for the magic.   The player most like Lewis in which the Lakers have faced would be a guy similar to Okur.  Even though Lewis is quicker than Okur, chances are Gasol will be able to keep up with him.  If they decided to pick and roll then the Lakers will be fine to switch on the pick with the lengthy Ariza and Gasol.

Hedo, I despised this guy back when he played for the Kings.  Another bigger forward who can score from any where on the floor.  Ariza got a great warm up defending Mello in the previous series.  If Ariza can slow down Mello then for sure he can have an impact on Hedo.  I feel that this is the X factor.  If we can keep Hedo quite we can win this series.

Time to break down Dwight.  Dwight is a man child, a super freak.  The dude takes his vitamins.  Luckily we have two seven footers to clog up the lane and make the paint a living night mare for Howard.  Where he will get his points is late switches or slow to help.  It is essential Bynum stays out of foul trouble.  There are possibly chances that Phil will suite up Mbenga to throw one more man at Howard with size.

The Lakers trip to the finals is four wins away.  Lets see if they can do it.  Game time tomorrow at 6…..

26
May
09

Denver is Hardcore with a capital H

What is the first thing that comes to mind when you think about game four of the Lakers Nuggets series?   Chris Anderson aka Bird Man, tattoos, J.R (I am a huge THUG) Smith, Dante Jones’s play is so dirty you might see it on Red Tube, or the lack luster hustle and effort by the Lakers?  To me, all of those things come to mind in that particular order.

First and foremost, the Lakers stunk the joint up in game four.  There were two or three guys that came to play, Kobe, Bynum, and Gasol.  Bynum and Gasol were a stretch.  Second off the Nuggets killed the inside and cleaned those boards the best they knew how.  It was truly a one sided game all 48 minutes.  Props to Denver for sticking one to the Lakers.

OK, now is where I talk about what was running through my head last night.  Lets start with the obvious.  Denver has a lot of tattoos.  No I take that back, the Lakers have a lot of tattoos, the Nuggets, well when they play Carmello, Smith, Anderson, Martin, and Carter together, it looks like something you would see on National Geographic’s show “Taboo”.  I don’t know what is going on with that high altitude but I am truly thinking of becoming a tattoo artist and setting up shop right next to the Pepsi Center.  Better yet, the Nuggets organization can hire me to become the team Tattoo artist.  That way it can be another perk for the players to sign with the Nuggets.  Hell, maybe LeBron would want to play for Denver on that alone?

Chris the Birdman Anderson, this guy has been through a lot over the years and it is great that he cleaned up his life and made it back to the NBA.  Should we really feel bad for this guy though?  Should we jump on his pity train?  What about Joe Schmoe who is now three years sober and is holding down a steady job at Best Buy finally being able to put food on the table for his little girl?  Just because Anderson is in the NBA does not mean he is any better than the thousands of recovering addicts in this country.  Time to bounce from that pity party.  When I become a parent I want my child to have Chris Anderson as a role model.  “Kids, this is how you save money, I am going to use the needle that was used for your first tattoo and then use it to shoot up with heroin, grab that giant rubber band over there for me.”  Ohh yeah and what is with these alter egos, “So Chris what is the Bird man?”  “I don’t know you are going to ask him.”  That answer was super douchey.

J.R. Smith, the guy can shoot you into a game and can shoot you out of a game.  Him and Kenyon Martin are the Rasheed Wallace of this NBA generation.  These two guys are strung so tight I would not be surprised if some time in their career they one up Ron Artest and Stephen Jackson.  I love when J.R. Smith makes a three and he is talking shit like he is at Rucker Park the whole way down the court.  Settle down bro, you just light up Sasha Vujachic.  He is shooting 15 percent from the field this series and is averaging more turnovers than points per game.  That right there is straight ballin, no………it really is.  You are super hard core.

K-Mart, sick nickname, if you have another child you should name him Wallace Martin, then he could be Wall-Mart.  Settle down out there man.  The NBA is not out to get you.  Stop bitching at the refs every time a foul is called.  If you hold Pau’s arm as though you are walking down the aisle with him on your wedding day, then that is probably going to be a technical.  On that note, you did look super hard though.  As Mr. Cuban once said, you are just a Thug.

Danita Jones, the only reason anyone knows your name is because of Kobe Bryant.  You are the sacrificial lamb, which enables J.R. Smith and Mellow to guard Kobe when the game is on the line.  The sole reason you get to start the game is because the Nuggets know you will not do anything except foul Kobe.  They don’t want you in the game when it counts, you are just a scrub.  I would recommend you stop pushing Kobe when he is not looking, and for sure not trip him, because without Kobe, you would be just another no name NBA player.  Settle down my friend.

One final note, back to the “Birdman”.  Watch how he plays the game.  Every trip down the floor he is the last one down.  He trails thus giving him the ability to get a running start at getting blocks and boards.  It is smart on his behalf and it makes rebounds and driving dunks that much easier.  This type of play excites the crowd, especially when he flaps his wings like a bird.  I think since Kobe’s nickname is the Black Mamba, every time he runs down the court and does something sick, he should lie down on the floor and slither back to the other side of the court.  Or possibly if LeBron does one of his towering dunks maybe he should get on all fours and run back on D like the king of the jungle.  All I am saying is that unless you are staring in Angeles in the Outfield three, chill out on the flapping on the wings.

Peace out Denver Thuggets-

04
May
09

The NBA playoffs owe their excitement to Beijing…and Kobe Bryant

April through June is definitely my favorite time of the year as a sports fan.  Many would say March purely because of March Madness, and that is very hard to argue.  The difference for me is that we have baseball back, the NFL draft and the NBA playoffs.

Until last year, the NBA playoffs were just a long and boring end to a season filled with much more excitement than the playoffs could provide.  The 2004 playoffs were the last playoffs that I cared about because my team (Minnesota Timberwolves) had the top seed in the Western Conference playoffs and it seemed as if Kevin Garnett could finally get out of the first round.  They did so by beating the Denver Nuggets in 5 games and then proceeded to give me the greatest sporting experience of my life in Game 7 against Sacramento in round 2.  Unfortunately they met an immovable force in the Conference finals and lost to the Lakers 4-2.  For those of you who are staunch Lakers fans, keep two things in mind these playoffs.  First, without Minnesota, you wouldn’t have the Lakers.  So whatever success your team achieves, recognize where the talent started.  Second, even with Shaq and Kobe, the Lakers choked hard against the Pistons.  Look it up, the Pistons just stifled the heck out of Kobe and Shaq.  But that is neither here nor there.  The point of this post is to point out a part of this year’s playoffs that should make them one of the best ever.

Ever since getting together to win the summer Olympics in Beijing this past summer, Kobe Bryant, Lebron James and Dwayne Wade have grown closer together as friends.  They all challenged each other while playing for the gold and, I think, had direct effects on each other’s seasons this year.  Kobe is an incredible defender and no doubt worked with Lebron and Dwayne on their defense this year.  Then magically, this year, Lebron and Dwayne had their best years defensively.  Kobe was an elder on this Olympic team and took these guys under his wing and may have created two new monsters to take over for him whenever he decides to call it quits.  They became good friends and with any good friendship comes a little competition.

It all started back on a chilly February night in New York City.  No matter how terrible its inhabitants are, Madison Square Garden still seems to be the basketball Mecca.  Whether it is rumors of Lebron coming to the MSG permanently or Nate Robinson being a more successful version of Gary Coleman, it’s the place to play.  Kobe Bryant decided that he would drop a MSG record 61 points and cause the usually hostile Knicks fans to chant “MVP, MVP!”  It was surely a sight to see.  Bryant, after the game, got a text message from his friend Lebron that was something along the lines of “Good work…but you know I’m going to try and do better”

What happened the next night at MSG?  Lebron James showed up at MSG and put up maybe the most impressive numbers of his career.  James dropped 52 points, 9 rebounds and 11 assists.  If you remember back that far, the NBA actually took away one rebound from James and stripped him of a chance to have one of the most memorable triple-doubles in NBA history.  James made good on his promise to upstage Kobe and he certainly did.  He may not have scored 61 but he definitely filled the rest of his stat sheet better than Kobe did.

Examples of how Dwayne Wade upstaged Kobe and Lebron?  Easy…Dwayne just carried his team through the regular season and to being one win away from a second round match up against friend Lebron James.  I wonder at what point Wade will have to address his chronic back and knee problems.  Having to carry an entire franchise can have its negative effects (ask Kevin Garnett and his playoff playing minutes this year).  Now that Wade is out, look for Kobe and Lebron to try and upstage each other each night until they eventually meet in the Finals.

On Monday, James was crowned the NBA MVP.  Rightfully so, he was the best player in the NBA from game 1 to game 82 and continues to dominate in the playoffs.  Many of you who read this may be Lakers/Kobe fans, I am as well, but lets be honest.  Lebron James is a monster and is better at this point in his career than Kobe Bryant was.  I can hear you now, “Well, who has more championships?”  Easy answer, both have the same amount of championships.  Lebron has been in the league for 6 years and has not won a title yet.  Kobe Bryant has been without Shaq since 2004 and hasn’t won a titled without Shaq.  He’s come close but…oh wait, so has Lebron.  So as far as I’m concerned, that argument is completely nullified by what I call the “Shaq-Factor”.  Could Lebron have won titles already if he had the most dominant center since Wilt?  We’ll never know, but I’ll just guess yes.  Until Kobe wins a title without Shaq, this argument ends in a tie.  Until Kobe gets rid of the Shaq-Factor, he and Lebron are in the same boat.

Here are my second round predictions (Celtics/Magic game just ended and I made up my mind about their series before this game 1 ended)

Magic over Celtics 4-1 (KG just matters too much.  Brian Scalabrine can only take you so far and Dwight Howard is an absolute wrecking ball)

Cavs over Hawks 4-0 (maybe 4-1 if that Hawk swoops down and brings about a phobia of birds in Lebron)

Lakers 4-1 over Rockets (Rockets sneak in a win in Houston in game 3 but that’s it.  Kobe just spanks Ron Artest for 5 games)

Denver 4-2 over Dallas (Battle of the delinquents.  Josh Howard and Jason Terry get to go home early…and something tells me that they don’t mind too much)

25
Mar
09

If I lived in Boston I would hate Los Angeles as well….

picture-5picture-61

02
Feb
09

MVP MVP MVP MVP

 

MVP

MVP

For Laker fans all year long, we have been waiting for a night like this. Kobe finally dropped big points and it could have not come at a better time. He dropped 61 pts in the Mecca of basketball Madison Square Garden including a perfect twenty for twenty performance from the free throw line. He scored the most points ever in this gym passing Jordan who dropped a double nickel and Bernard King who had 60.
As a Laker fan this is awesome but as we saw tonight the true basketball fans in New York also appreciated the performance. When Phil pulled Kobe out with under a minute to go the crowd started chanting MVP and truly meant it. Spike Lee, Mr. New York Knick, gave Kobe a standing ovation, and even the zen master gave Kobe a humble slap on the ass. It truly was a great night for the NBA and basketball fans world wide.
I know that Bron Breezy has been leading the leauge in the MVP race but tonight this performance will hopefully close ground between Lebron and Kobe. No more is Kobe the guy that hoists up fifty shots a night and averages thirty seven points per game. On most nights he leads the team in points and assists averagins 27 and 6 per game. His defence is stellar, he gets his teamates the ball, and similar to Air Jordan himself, Kobe is now making the players around him better.
He if finally playing the game the way it should be played and efficiently. Tonight Kobe knew that his team needed something positive to look towards with the news of Andrew Bynum going down for possibly three months. They needed this momentum to carry them through Toronto and Boston. Now as Kobe so many times has led by example, it is time for his team to step up. Time for Lamar and Pau to play some interior Defense, time for Luke and Vlad, to hit those open threes, time for Trevor to keep doing what Trevor does, time for Fish and Farm to get the ball where it needs to go, and finally time for the Lakers to put all doubts aside that they can win and win big with out Bynum.
This I feel is only a start to a brilliant performance that we are about to wittness from Kobe Bryant. Lakers fans, NBA fans, basketball fans, get ready to wittness basketball the way it should be played, the way the greatest player in the world plays. It is time for Kobe to reclaim his MVP.




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