Wednesday, February 23, 2011
From the department of "so close, yet so far," comes my lottery-winning streak. Whenever the ol' Lotto Max jackpot passes the $40 million mark, I throw in five bucks and buy a ticket. (You know, since a $30 million prize just isn't worth my time.) So last month, I got a ticket and won a free play from it. Not too shabby. From that free play, I won $20. Naturally, I re-invested $5 of that into another ticket, and boom goes the dynamite, I won yet another free play.
This went on for three more weeks, picking up free play after free play. The streak finally ended last weekend, not coincidentally after I mentioned this odd run of luck to a friend. It was sort of like how Wile E. Coyote was able to run on air, and only fell down the cliff after he realized he was running on air.
Some might say that I barely won anything, with the $15 profit probably not even worth the time expended to buy those cards and 'randomly' pick out my numbers*, but feh to that. Beating the system for six straight weeks is a victory in and of itself, and much greater than any multi-million dollar prize. I don’t need any more money. I’m not greedy. As long as I’ve got my health, my millions of dollars, my gold house, and my rocket car, I don’t need anything else.
* I'd give you my formula, but then you'd use them and invariably win $30 million on some week when I didn't buy a ticket....and then there would be blood.
Here's a treat for Conan fans --- a 90-minute podcast featuring Conan and his show's warm-up act, some guy named Jimmy Pardo. It's definitely worth a listen if you have the time; Conan is noticeably looser and more 'who gives a fuck?' than he is on his show or in other appearances. He even drops an s-bomb at one point, which just sounds weird coming from him. It'd be like hearing the Queen call David Cameron a son of a bitch. (I'll bet she has, at least once.)
My Survivor-loving pal Mario has followed up his award-winning, legendary, record-breaking Survivor Funny 115 (The 115 funniest moments in Survivor history) with....115 more of the funniest moments in Survivor history. The first entry deals with the first 11 Survivor seasons, and the new list (currently in progress) covers everything since. Needless to say, there is a lot of Coach. I personally contacted Mario to make sure he'd included a) many of Coach's greatest moments and b) what has come to be known as "Matty's shit-eating grin" during the Gabon season. Fans of the show know what I'm talking about. If I had to make a prediction about what might be #1, I'd have to go with either Eliza "it's a f***ing stick" rant to Jason in the Fans vs. Favorites season, or Crystal's screamed vote for Randy in the Gabon season, or any of about 20 ridiculous things that Coach said or did.
This 'Red Riding Hood' movie is a spoof, right?.....Right?
UFC 127 Picks!
N.B., the hint to my UFC pick posts is that when the event looks like a dog, I include my predictions as part of a larger post, rather than a stand-alone. Then again, often the UFC cards that look underwhelming on paper end up being awesome. So what do I know?
* Jorge Rivera over Michael Bisping, decision
Rivera is almost the perfect gatekeeper. If you look at his record, you'll see that all his wins have come over average or below-average fighters, and all his losses have come to above-average or great fighters. Rivera is the perfect demarcation line. Now, since Bisping is (barely) an above-average fighter, I was going to pick him in this match...before I noticed that Jorge has never lost via decision. If you're going to beat Jorge Rivera, you'll have to stop him, and I don't think Bisping's pitter-pat style is capable of actually stopping a fighter that's also above average. The UFC sees its dream of a Bisping-headlined UK PPV card once again get delayed as Rivera notches a big win.
* Chris Lytle over Brian Ebersole, submission, R2
Ebersole is the journeyman replacement for Carlos Condit, who got hurt and thus turned this bout into an important welterweight showdown into kind of a 'meh' fight. Lytle is on a roll and is hunting for one late-career title shot, so watch this, Ebersole will probably shock the world and.....well, no, he won't.
* Kyle Noke over Chris Camozzi, decision
If you didn't know UFC 127 was being held in Australia, this fight's inclusion on the main card is the giveaway. I'll give the nod to Noke just because he's in his home country, since both fighters are roughly on the same level.
* George Sotiropoulos over Dennis Siver, submission, R2
This fight is taking place since George (who's on an eight-fight win streak, seven of those in the UFC) wanted to fight in his home country of Australia. As it turned out, the match will give him something to do since the lightweight championship picture is tied up for a while. If and when Sotiropoulos wins this, he'll probably get a bout against Jim Miller (presuming Miller wins next month, of course) in the summer for the #1 contender's spot. This shouldn't be too big a challenge for Sotiropoulos; Siver has won six of his last seven but is clearly a second or third-tier kind of guy that George can tap out.
* Jon Fitch over BJ Penn, decision
Surprise, surprise. Penn is literally the only welterweight besides GSP that could headline an event against Fitch, both because a) Fitch has beaten pretty much everyone else and b) Fitch is less exciting than watching paint dry. As dull as Fitch's grinding style is, he's undisputedly one of the very best fighters in the world. The man has lost just once in EIGHT YEARS, and that was to St. Pierre. If Penn can actually win this fight, I'd argue that not only should Penn get an immediate title shot, but that it might be the most impressive win in BJ's long career. (The only other candidate is his first win over Matt Hughes.) As always with Penn, it will depend on how hard he's been training for this bout, and frankly, given that Fitch isn't a blood rival, I doubt BJ really has the motivation. A 100 percent BJ Penn would be in a tough shape against Fitch but he could win it; a lackluster BJ Penn will get wrestled down and outworked like almost every other Fitch opponent this decade.
* Chris Tuchscherer over Mark Hunt, TKO, R1
* Anthony Perosh over Tom Blackledge, KO, R2
* Maciej Jewtuszko over Curt Warburton, submission, R3
* Riki Fukuda over Nick Ring, decision
* Ross Pearson over Spencer Fisher, decision
* Alexander Gustafsson over James Te-Huna, KO, R1
* Zhang Tie Quan over Jason Reinhardt, submission, R3