Thursday, February 1, 2018

I Want To Beat Bobby Flay

Tonight I watched an extremely bad episode of “Beat Bobby Flay” on the Food Network. If you’re not familiar, it’s a show where two cooks face off against each other to win a chance to beat the “famous” cook, Bobby Flay, in a cooking competition in a dish of their choice.

This particular episode featured a cook from the Twin Cities and a cook from the suburbs of Boston in the first round. They were given the secret ingredient of brats. The Twin Cities cook obviously blew the beanball nutbag out of the water (the Boston guy tried to make a “deconstructed brat” -- lmaoooo). Our Twin Cities hero (a James Beard winner) then faced Bobby Flay, and chose to compete over jucy lucys -- the classic Minneapolis dish, featuring cheese encased inside of hamburger.

So the whole time I’m watching them trying to make these jucy lucys, Bobby Flay looks like he’s screwing up. He’s using tiny bits of cheddar and american cheese, whereas Twin Cities guy is using nice sized slices of Wisconsin gouda infused with truffles (melts easily -- perfect for a jucy lucy). Bobby Flay is making beets or something, while Twin Cities guy just makes a simple arugula salad to put on top.

Time’s up, and they get to the judges. Bobby’s burger goes first. The judges all taste it, and all three of them say his jucy lucy is overdone. All three of them. An overdone jucy lucy? I can’t imagine many things worse than that. It wouldn’t goo, it wouldn’t ooze. Yuck.

Then the judges taste the Twin Cities guy’s jucy lucy, and they all declare it delicious! It’s juicy and cheesy, just as it should be.

After a minute, the three judges reveal the winner, who is… Bobby Flay.

Why? Because the show producers are all assholes from the coast who just want Bobby Flay to win all the time no matter how ridiculous it looks according to the judges, the Twin Cities guy’s jucy lucy was… too cheesy.

They said he lost because the JUCY LUCY was TOO CHEESY.

A jucy lucy is SUPPOSED TO BE CHEESY. That’s the WHOLE POINT. It’s a huge slab of cheese in a burger. I mean, come on. What the hell do you think we’re doing out here in Minnesota and Wisconsin? Eating kale burgers?

Bobby Flay normally enrages me, but this enraged me even more. How dare a room full of coastal bastards who clearly don’t even know what a jucy lucy is say the Twin Cities guy’s jucy lucy wasn’t as good because it was TOO CHEESY. WTF?

To illustrate how incredible dumb this sounded, consider the following hypotheticals:
  • “This New England clam chowder is too thick. I prefer my chowder to be more soupy.”
  • “Sorry, I just didn’t think this New York pizza was thick enough, and it needed a lot more toppings.”
  • “Sorry, Mexico, I only like hard shell tacos.”
  • “This Cincinnati Chili is too much like spaghetti.”
I want to beat Bobby Flay... with a bat.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

My review of the new MST3K reboot

As many of my tens of loyal fans might know, I’m a big Mystery Science Theater 3000 fan (a.k.a. MST3K). I’m not a knows-every-riff-in-every-episode-type fan, or even a donated-to-the-MST3K-reboot-kickstarter-type fan (I’m not exactly making a fortune blogging), but I am a still-has-episodes-recorded-on-VHS-somewhere-in-my-mother’s-overpacked-storage-type fan.

The new MST3K reboot came out on Netflix last Friday, and most people seem pretty happy with it. Honestly, I was a little apprehensive—especially because I’m a biased-as-hell Minnesotan who likes the midwestern heavy-handedness of the humor in the original show—but of course I gave it a try.

I’ve watched one episode and it was… okay? It wasn’t bad, but it didn’t exactly knock my zubaz off either.

First of all, you can tell it was made by a big crew in LA and not by a handful of doughy Minnesotans in Hopkins, MN, like the original. There’s a lot more production involved, which is welcome in some areas (like the nice opening sequence with Har Mar Superstar and a band dressed up as skeletons singing the theme song), but completely unneeded in others (seriously, we don’t need Tom Servo flying around the theater). The cast and crew are much bigger too, as you don't see characters pulling double-duties as mads and puppets anymore.

There are also apparently going to be frequent cameos from famous-type people too, including Jerry Seinfeld (who is admittedly an old friend of creator and current writer Joe Hodgson’s, so okay, whatever). The most famous cameo back in the original series was Vikings running back Robert Smith, because the Vikings used to practice next door to where they shot the show and often watched or something. He just happened to be around and willing to do it.

However, the first cameo in the first episode of the reboot was probably one of the funniest parts of the episode to me, so fine.

The actual most annoying Californian stuff is the over-acting and speed-talking.

Jonah Ray and the others just seem over eager to be taking part in the experiment. Totally understandable. After all, they’re rebooting MST3K—the best TV Show EVER!!!!! But in the actual show, they aren’t supposed to be so upbeat and enthused about watching and making fun of these bad movies. The riffing is not quite as dry and passive aggressive as the original, and those hallmarks of Midwestern humor were part of the reason I so enjoyed the show. Rats.

It did seem like there were a couple of attempts to incorporate part of the show’s old Midwestern roots, but they all fell flat. Gypsy—who has an entirely new and different voice (that I actually quite like)—is explicitly supposed to have a Midwestern accent, but as a Midwestern myself, the accent is so faint I can’t even hear it. Also at one point during the movie, a blonde Danish family was attacked by a monster and one of the characters (their voices are still hard to tell apart) quipped, “It’s attacking a Minnesotan family!” Hey—I’m all for making fun of pasty Minnesotans, but the joke felt shoehorned into the show and wasn’t funny as a result. Plus, less than a minute later, one of the characters made a riff referencing Duck Duck “Goose”, which felt like they were purposely trying to piss off every fiber in my admittedly overly fibrous Minnesotan body.

But yeah, I’m biased and picky.

At times Jonah and the robots talk too fast and try to fit too many riffs in that you can’t digest them. I’m hoping that gets better with time. I've heard the second episode is better, and despite my mostly minor qualms, I'm looking forward to watching it.

P.S. — They did a fan mail segment and it sucked because it was obviously fake fan mail. How was it obviously fake? No one sends actual letters anymore, much less 8-year-olds to a show before it even makes a first episode. The fan mail in the original show was real and that’s what actually made it so funny. Please don’t try to recreate that artificially.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Vikings Fans Losing Their Crap Over Blair Walsh's Missed Field Goal

I'm a Vikings fan. I'm not a very big football fan, but sometimes baseball isn't on, so I watch football. When I watch football I root for the Vikings, and my absolute favorite part about it is watching Vikings fans lose their shit when the team inevitably epically messes up.

That is exactly what happened last Sunday, when Vikings kicker Blair Walsh missed a 27 yard, game-winning field goal in the final seconds of the game.

I watched 50 videos of Vikings fans reacting to the missed kick on YouTube and took notes on my observations (it just really never gets old to me). Below is a summary of how many of the videos included fans doing or saying the following:
  • "NOOOOOOOOOOOO!": 22 (44%)
  • Immediately collapsing on the floor: 14 (28%) (Fans usually remained on the floor face down or in the fetal position)
  • Immediately stating the obvious "HE MISSED IT ": 11 (22%)
  • "Oh my god.": 15 (30%)
  • "I CALLED IT/I KNEW IT": 6 (12%)
  • Screaming explicitives: 29 (58%) (Often done in front of small children)
  • Crying: 3 (6%)
  • Laughing: 10 (20%)
  • Unintelligible, extended screaming: 10 (20%)
  • Staring with mouth open speechless: 2 (4%)
  • "I'm done/That's it": 3 (6%)
  • "Are you kidding me?/You have to be kidding me.": 11 (22%)
  • Throwing objects: 10 (20%) (Most of these were Vikings hats the fan had been wearing and threw at/or near the TV.)
  • "How?"/"What?": 17 (34%)
  • Expressing denial ("That did not just happen."/"Unbelievable."): 11 (22%)
  • "No more Superbowl": 1 (2%)
  • Immediately taking off Vikings jersey or shirt (My personal favorite): 5 (10%)
  • Expressing general, explicit agony about the Vikings and how this always happens: 6 (12%)
  • Mentioning Gary Anderson: 2 (4%)

Here's a couple of my favorite ones:

Fan vaping alone in his garage:

Fan with young unbelievably cute daughter who has no idea what just happened:

Paralyzed fan:

Classic Vikings meltdown fan:

Fan who had me in tears:

Fan who always believed in the Vikings:

Hysterical fan:

"No More Superbowl" fans:


Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Everyone's Favorite Baseball Player

I remember that night, in early June of 2010, when Junior announced his retirement. It was very unexpected (to say the least), and I wrote about it then, because I like to write my way through emotions. Now I'm not sure what else I have to say, but I still have these emotions...

Kirby Puckett has been my favorite baseball player since I could even have a favorite baseball player. Same goes for most kids born and raised in Minnesota at that time. Don't believe me? Go ask Joe Mauer who his favorite player is. But anyway... ever since I could have a second favorite baseball player, my second favorite baseball player was Ken Griffey Jr.

He was just too damn cool. The backwards hat. That smile. The swing.

I know I'm not alone by any means. There are Orioles fans whose favorite player is Cal Ripken Jr. ("But I loved Griffey"). Padres fans whose favorite player was Tony Gwynn ("But I loved Griffey"). Braves fans whose favorite player was... one of any number of players ("But I loved Griffey"). Cardinals fans whose favorite player was Mark McGwire ("But Griffey was awesome"). Giants fans whose favorite player was Barry.... ok, you get the point.

In the spring of 2011 I was at my Dad's house in Arizona with my older brother, and we were watching the Arizona D-Backs pre-game show on TV. One of the features was a kid interviewing their star, Justin Upton. The kid asked him, "Who was your favorite player growing up?" and before Justin answered I said, "Ken Griffey Jr." And then Justin said "Ken Griffey Jr." My brother was astounded. "How did you know that?"

It was just one of those moments where you smile, sigh, and shake your head.

Congratulations, Junior, on your Hall of Fame induction, everything you went through to get there, and getting there with the highest percentage of votes of any National Baseball Hall of Fame inductee ever.

(P.S. - And I will never, ever, EVER forget this.)

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Dallas Stars fans need to get a grip

Minnesota's current NHL team—the Minnesota Wild—was gifted this year with an outdoor stadium game, which includes an alumni game of former players and is pretty darn cool! Since the Wild are only 15 years old, the vast majority of the players for the Minnesota alumni team are former players for the Minnesota North Stars. So the alumni team is going to wear North Stars jerseys, which the team released pictures of yesterday.

And HOLY COW, are Dallas fans inexplicably and irrationally PISSED about it.

(best and funniest for last)

MINNESOTA is appropriating hockey history from DALLAS, TEXAS? Did we hit a "We're not really a hockey town" nerve or WHAT?

15 of the 17 North Star alumni on the roster never played a single game for Dallas. One of the two alumni players who did play for both teams was Neal Broten, who only played one and a half years with the Stars compared to his 12 with the North Stars. The other dual-team player—Mike Modano—I'll give you that; I don't know why he's on the team.

Of the other 15 players, over half of them were either born in and/or currently live in Minnesota, mostly in the Twin Cities metro. Yet, we're supposed to pretend they are not part of Minnesota hockey history? We're supposed to pretend these players, moments, and things are exclusively reserved for Dallas, Texas? Even though they NEVER PLAYED OR LIVED THERE?

The North "Stars" franchise has a longer history in Minnesota than it even has in Dallas, but we're supposed to pretend ALL of that history belongs exclusively to Dallas?


We aren't trying to steal the franchise from you, Stars fans. It is your franchise history. We get that. We're only acknowledging our longer history in what is only sadly now "your" franchise. See, us here in Minnesota actually have a bond with this sport; it's not just a random professional sports team you may or may not show up to support. We care about this sport, our history with it, and the role it has played in our local lexicon. We love hockey. We love hockey. You think the Texas High School Football Tournament is big? The Minnesota High School Hockey Tournament is even bigger. It might be unfathomable to have a love that deep or strong simply just for the sport of hockey, especially out there in the desert—I get it. And I am glad some of you do actually love our old hockey team.

But don't you ever, EVER try to tell us we are stealing "your" history. This is OUR history just as much, if not probably more, than it is yours.

Just picture this for a moment: The owner of the Dallas Cowboys suddenly sells his team to someone else, and within a year or two that team is abruptly moved and becomes the L.A. Cowboys (partially or mostly due to the fact the new owner has several damning accusations of sexual harassment against him). You no longer have your team, and fans are telling you "The L.A. Cowboys have no history in Dallas! The franchise belongs to Los Angeles! How dare you ever evoke the L.A. Cowboys or anything they have to do with your history! This isn't your team!" Because, according to your "logic", the L.A. Cowboys would have NO history in Dallas.

Seriously. Just chill the fuck out. Let our North Stars who NEVER PLAYED IN YOUR CITY play an alumni game in jerseys YOUR TEAM NEVER EVEN F#$%&^* WORE.

Minnesota fans don't complain about L.A. claiming Lakers history. Minnesota fans don't care about the Washington Nationals hanging Harmon Killebrew's name and number behind home plate. Minnesota fans are smart enough to realize that is an honor, not an insult.

Hopefully the people in Dallas will be smart enough to realize that one day too.


A hockey question: Why did the North Stars get dissolved? 

The Minnesota North Stars: Why did they leave Minnesota?

Norm Green sexually harassed his female employees and had to leave town—but hell, why would that bother anyone in Dallas, Texas (as long as we want to play stereotypes)!

Sunday, April 12, 2015


In the following, I have ranked all 30 MLB teams onf how much I personally liked them as of April, 11 21 2015. These are the definitive rankings.

Without further ado:



The team that uses "Chief Wahoo" on their uniforms. Their fans boo JIM THOME--who has the most Indian home runs of all time, in addition to being the coolest ever, one of the greatest Indians of all time, and one of the greatest MLB players period of all time. So congratulations, Indians fans, you and your racist-ass have achieved WORST MLB TEAM on my personal ranking.

(Bob Feller is completely excluded from any of this. Bob Feller ruled. Objectively. Not up to debate with anyone. Period.)


The number of African-American players who have played for this team and expressed racist treatment by fans is troubling. The only reason the Cubs aren't last is because they haven't won a World Series in 105+ years, and that is actual hysterical.



 I am so apathetic about this team I have listed it lower than teams I dislike.

I hate Josh Hamilton. He compared himself to Jesus because Twins fans heckled him. Now, the Angels have treated him so bad I think I hate the Angels more? That's how messed up this organization is.

If this team didn't have Mike Trout, they would be so SOL (even more) on my list. Trout is really cool. He was really responsive to fans when he was out in left field at Target Field.


Mostly because of how crappy the majority of the fans are. They gloat even worse than Yankees fans did 10 years ago, and they don't even have the history to back it up. 


Best fans in baseball.


They play inside an "ugly" dome. Domes suck.... Who would ever get emotional over a dome? A DOME? Excuse me.


I still just love that they gave A-Rod that contract back in the day.


 Biggio! Bagwell! Clemens! Fun team. Plus:


 The fact they made a secret nod to Pete Rose in the stadium is cool. Otherwise, mostly apathy towards them.


Love Wilson Ramos and Denard Span. This has been a good team. I'm mostly apathetic about this team too, sorry.


Obviously, this team has had Michael Cuddyer, (more importantly now) Justin Morneau, and LaTroy Hawkins. While I love all those guys, there's not much else going on here.


Got some relatives out there. And it's hot. Nice stadium.


Watching the Pirates in the playoffs 2013 was freaking awesome. And Justin Morneau. Not to mention, how about that ballpark?


      Be happy you made it this far, Giants, since a lot of it had to do with me having to re-number everyone after you because I completely blocked out any memory of your awful team. Also, the only reason you made it this far at all is because of the greatness of Barry Bonds.


I'm not even sure why I've always kinda liked the Padres. Tony Gwynn? Maybe. Also: shout out to my Padres' friend Joe who I think is awesome.


Good team. Never go wrong with the uniforms. Cal Ripekn Jr. Awesome stadium. I dunno, just always liked them



Despite the Tigers-Twins couple rivalries in the past decade, I never disliked this team. I'm not sure how long my sympathy for the 2003 Tigers team will run, but there is still a bit of it there to this day.


"Touch them all Joe! You'll never hit a bigger home run in your life!" This just kills me.


I came to admire and love this team in the 00's, much due to Ozzie Gullien's colorfulness and the great rivalry between my favorite team and them. I've met some great White Sox fans too, and we've had a ball at Twins games. I feel like this team is a "brother" to the Twins more than any other.


I have no real connection to this team, but have always admired them for their "Moneyball" ways. The A's and the Twins were both playoff competitors much of the earlier parts of the 00's decade, and both had small payrolls. They proved the others wrong, like I felt we did.

But remember--the Twins beat "Moneyball".


Many Twins fans, and others, hate the Yankees. Some might be surprised at this placement. Frankly, I'm a baseball fan, and I would be an idiot to ignore the history of this team and the role it has played in baseball.

Furthermore, why to people even despise the Yankees so much? Because they spend a lot of money? They are smart and have used their market as an advantage and have companies that make a ton of money (unlike the Mets). They would be dumb not to use their market and financial opportunities.

 The Yankees have one of the richest and strongest histories in all of  baseball. Babe Ruth? Lou Gehrig? Ignore that if it makes you feel better about yourself, I guess. As someone who hated the Yankees, but came around to thinking they're okay, I can yell you one thing: hating the Yankees is just wasting your god damn breath and life in general.

And if you just want to complain about annoying Yankees fans, um, have you seen Red Sox fans anytime in the past 10 years?


This ranking of the Phillies is almost entirely due to how awesome Phillies fans are. Oh, you don't agree? *Reaches for spare D Batteries*


I've often said I considered the Mets an older cousin of the Twins. The Mets were made to replace the loss of the Dodgers (Blue) and Giants (Orange) to New York City National League. The Twins replaced the Twin Cities minor league teams: Minneapolis Millers (formerly a Giants farm team) and the St. Paul Saints (formerly a Dodgers farm team).

Also: "Can't Anyone Here Play This Game?" is my favorite baseball book ever,


Two of my top three ever players were Mariners. So they should go here. 

P.S. Junior + Ichiro forever

P.S.S. And A-Rod.


Vin Scully.


What a lovely little low-budget team that can win two World Series-es out of nowhere? Family connections to this team, I love them. The Dinger Machine is also probably the greatest ballpark feature of all time. Don't agree? I will fight you. Literally. Come to Liquor Lyle's and tweet me.


I was born July of 1985. My aunt, as long as I will always remember, wore a Kansas City World Series pennant around her neck. Her husband got a ring for scouting, she got the necklace. I will always love this team until the day I die.


Baseball has eternal hope. I want to see the Twins win the World Series again, but if I don't, that's okay. I'm so lucky, I've seen it twice, and even better, as a small child who could never imagine anything else. Can you watch Hrbek's Grand Slam or Kirby's Home Run without crying? Because I can't. I mean, crap. I think I'm gonna start crying right now...

Sunday, March 1, 2015

All Ten Original Star Trek and TNG Movies Ranked

This has nothing to do with baseball. Sorry. I just watched 10 Star Trek movies in 48 hours, and I have to share my observations.

10. Star Trek 1 -- Sucks. I hated it. I watched it drunk and didn't even like it.

9. Star Trek (10) Nemesis --All of the concepts in this movie could have been used to make a great movie. But the exact opposite happened.

8. Star Trek (8): First Contact -- The borg make me piss my pants on the fright scale; and the Earth scientist guy is interesting. It's eh, but gets the job done.

7. Star Trek 5: The Final Frontier -- The best part of this movie is the birth of the line: "What does God need with a starship?" Has intriguing parts, but tons of wasted time.

6. Star Trek (9): Insurrection -- I have this rated here for some reason,

5. Star Trek 3: Search for Spock -- This movie that's really just dedicated to bring Spock back to life is pretty cheesy, but did a really good job reaching that end goal. Christopher Lloyd as a Klingon is also a good move.

 Star Trek (7): Generations -- Seeing the captains together. Enjoyable for Star Trek fans, but probably not others.

3. Star Trek 6: The Undiscovered Country -- KIRK AND BONES GET SENT TO THE ARCTIC KLINGON GULAG!! But seriously this was one of the best movies. Good, unique plot.

2. Star Trek 4: The Voyage Home (aka "The one with the whales!") -- This is definitely the funniest Star Trek movie ever. The actual premise of the movie is that an alien probe is destroying earth looking for (now extinct) whales, so the Enterprise crew has to take their stolen bird of prey back to the 1980s and kidnap some whales. . Especially since I was like 9 the last time I saw this, the joke about Chekov (with his heavy Russian accent) asking mid-80s Americas where "da nuclear wessles!" were went completely over my head and cracked me the hell up. Also, when Spock jumps in the whale tank to mind-meld with the whales.

1. Star Trek 2: Wrath of Kahn -- This is a perfect movie of its era. This is a perfect sci-fi movie. It even still holds up now. The line-graph plot of this movie is incredible. I was completely sobbing by the end. This wasn't just a good Star Trek movie, or just a good sci-fi movie; this is a good movie.

Do you agree?