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Smiling Through the Fight

January 17, 2013

Students flooded into the classroom and were greeted by fate’s gift to a school day: the substitute teacher. With everyone taking longer than usual to get in their seats after the cheers and jokes, 15 year-old Henry Andrade hopped into the room on his one good leg with the aid of crutches. Wearing a flat-brimmed hat and crisp, creaseless sneakers to match, the teacher followed protocol and asked Henry if he could remove his hat. Quickly taking the defensive and responding with indignation, a couple loyal friends protested 557062_544426055569788_1378746052_n[1]against the “sub’s” request.

“He just got treated for cancer! He can wear it!”

Sensing the teacher’s embarrassment after receiving a red-faced apology, Henry unleashed his patented, brilliant smile and waved down his friends.

“Guys, chill. How was he supposed to know?”

The nervous “sub” was grateful. In a brief, first interaction, the teacher learned all anyone needed to know about Henry Andrade: he quickly impacted everyone he ever met with his calm attitude, unique style and of course that smile.

* * *

With a passion for playing sports and helping to inspire others, Henry embodied a coach’s dream in a high school athlete. After playing soccer his whole life, a form of bone cancer common in adolescence called, osteosarcoma, settled in Henry’s femur when he was 14. The ensuing surgery to remove the cancer resulted in a steel rod, a permanent limp and a change in sports. He may have limped on land, but he glided in the water as a member of the North Providence High School Cougars’ swim team.

The following year, now a junior, the cancer came back. He knew doctors needed to remove his right clavicle and a portion of his left lung, but Henry refused surgery until after the Division III swim meet. Swimming in the freestyle and backstroke events, Henry scored points for his team at the divisional tournament, and more admirably, inspired every other Cougars’ swimmer to be their best, even at their worst. North Providence won the Division III title that year.

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Henry never fell behind in the water, or in the classroom over those last two years of high school. After graduating on time and with his fellow Cougars’ class this past June, Henry enrolled at the University of Rhode Island in the fall. Forging new friendships and hardening the old, he immersed himself in college life. Unfortunately, halfway through his first semester studying kinesiology, cancer again began attacking Henry’s body; this time at a more rapid pace. Forced to leave school, Henry found himself back in the Hasbro Children’s Hospital in Providence, RI.

While spending time in and out of the hospital, Henry was paid a visit by New England Patriots Pro Bowl Defensive Tackle Vince Wilfork back in November. The only thing in the room bigger than the (generously listed) 325 pound Wilfork, was Henry’s smile. As the Patriots battled on the gridiron, Henry fended off cancer with an immeasurable strength. While the Patriots surged on the football field, winning ten of their final eleven games to clinch a bye in the playoffs, Henry’s health began deteriorating further.

During their playoff bye week, another Patriots player stopped in to lift Henry’s spirits. Defensive Back, Devin McCourty, surprised Henry with a visit, and signed the gloves and cleats he wore during the Patriots final regular season game. It took Henry no time to make yet another friend. The two exchanged phone numbers, and were soon following each other on Twitter.

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Four days later, on January 7th, Henry passed away. Although unquestioned, the hundreds of friends and family there to pay respect at the wake proved Henry’s impact on nearly every person he came in contact with. Amongst those who waited their turn, which equated to hours, to say a final goodbye to their beloved friend was McCourty. He spoke to Henry’s family and dedicated his team’s playoffs in Henry’s honor. McCourty tweeted: “RIP @TheRealHenny94 I pray ur resting now…I’ll always remember ur smile and the fight I saw in u #TeamHenry.”

Less than 48 hours after McCourty attended Henry’s wake, he took the field as the Patriots hosted the the Houston Texans in their divisional playoff game. On the opening kickoff, the Texans kick returner, Danieal Manning, found a seam in the defense, and broke free at midfield. The closest Patriots’ player trailed about eight yards behind. As an entire stadium of cheering fans deflated, one player accelerated. Just as Henry walked with a limp, but glided in the water, McCourty seemed to fly on the field as he chased down the Texans return man. McCourty’s saving play prevented a touchdown, and set the tone in a game the Patriots dominated from that point forward, winning 41-28.

There is an old cliche that people love sports so much because they mirror life. This story is about the life of a survivor, fighter, family, community and a professional sports franchise who did not mirror sports, but were enlivened by them. It is also a simple, biased remembrance by someone honored to call Henry his friend. I was that substitute teacher.

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The Patriots will take the field Sunday in the AFC Championship hoping it’s the next step in ultimately winning the Super Bowl and being remembered above all their peers. Consider it another chase from behind for Devin McCourty and the New England Patriots: Henry Andrade is already up in that rarified air, smiling down on everybody.

Join Devin McCourty and the rest of #TeamHenry, Donations can be sent to: “Team Henry Memorial Fund, P.O. Box 114132, North Providence, RI 02911.” 100% of your donation will go to The Tomorrow Fund, Pediatric Cancer Research, NPHS Scholarship in Henry’s Memory and the St. Thomas Church Food Pantry.

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Super Blog XLVI: 25 Thoughts on the Biggest Game, Ever

February 5, 2012

The G.O.A.T. with a goat.

For the last two weeks my life has been one big attempt at distracting myself from this Super Bowl. Essentially that meant an inordinate amount of listening to Rick Ross and hoping I didn’t end up offending one of my black roommates. (editor’s note: Rick Ross lit’rally IS the fine line between genius an insanity: “have you ever made love to the woman of your dreams in a room full of money out in London while she screams?” Dude is molten lava). Of course, this distraction couldn’t possibly last, as I have devoured every single article written about the Super Bowl, the players, the player’s wives, the player’s side pieces and any factoid to grace the covers of ESPN, NFL, SI, or other acronym which covers sports on the interwebs. Fortunately for you, all you have to read is this one blog. I have no idea how to present this information to you, but I imagine this will turn into some sort of list involving the biggest story lines and players, videos, quotes, and my own anecdotes which I’ll number by using Roman numerals, because they are both fancy, and used by the NFL to denote its most important game. How’s that for clairvoyance? What’s clairvoyance? Shut up and watch the G.O.A.T. swag all over Carnival!

I.

II. Gronk Will Play, Duh: This is the Super Bowl. Something like a little high ankle sprain isn’t stopping the Gronk any more than one of the defenders constantly being dragged and emasculated all over the field by him. It’s simple, true champions play through injuries. Time for an anecdote: Last week, I’m in the middle of my own personal Super Bowl: murdering a dance floor double-dutch. Just as I’m going straight Harlem playground on this thing, I slip due to wet game conditions (spilled drink) and Gronk the living shit out of my ankle. Running on pure adrenaline, and whiskey, I head to the locker room (bar), get a shot (not Cortisone), compose myself (chase with beer), and get back on the field (dance floor).

The point here is simple. The human body is an amazing machine. You all saw Gronk back on the field just moments after having the ball of his ankle rolled onto the turf like he was a double-jointed circus freak. Thing is, Gronk IS a circus freak, and I think you’ll see him play like it. The far bigger question to Gronk’s health is whether he misses the game Sunday because he’s contracted the burn from one of the multitude of war pigs he ran through this week in Indy without wearing his helmet (non-football related).

III. Gronk and this Blogger Had a Moment: This has nothing to do with the Super Bowl, but I’m already concerned about getting 25 topics, so I’m including an even better anecdote than the one that just happened. Last Halloween, the Patriots were at Howl at the Moon in Boston and Gronk rolled up dressed up as Gronk. I was obviously the Tea Party, and Gronk misconstrued this as it being my birthday (due to my party hat) when I went up to him to say “what up, Gronk?” Next thing I know, Gronk is ordering a round of shots for Julian Edelman, Alge Crumpler, and ME. I’m smitten as all hell and go to take the glass from him when Gronk goes, “What?! Nah bro, I’m feeding this to you! No homo.” At which point, he grabs the glass, pushes my head back and feeds me the shot, wishing me a happy birthday. At that moment I knew we had drafted an overgrown fratboy man-child who had become my favorite Boston athlete (besides Tom). If you don’t believe this story, that’s cool, Gronk and I don’t even care.

IV. The Giants are Dumb Lucky: Can we just clear the air here? If not for a dropped interception, followed by the most impossible catch in the history of the sport, Eli Manning is still just a middling quarterback with a career passer rating of 82. If not for two muffed punts in the NFC Championship game, Eli Manning has no chance now at a second Super Bowl ring and being talked about as a potential Hall of Famer. Look it up, he’s a career 82.0 passer.

V. The Patriots are Pretty Lucky, Too!: Let’s get this all out of the way. Tuck rule. There, now we’re even going into this Super Bowl on the luck thing.

VI. Tom Brady’s Legacy: Cemented as the NFL’s G.O.A.T. with his 4th Super Bowl win.

VII. Tom Brady’s Legacy: Should not be tarnished by a loss in this game. He has led the worst defense to ever make a Super Bowl. Saying he sucks, and is overrated and lucky will only make you look like a New York sports fan, which is rarely a good look.

VIII. But Seriously, Let’s End the QB Debate: Eli Manning is an 82 career passer! This just continues to blow my mind that some “experts” are actually giving the Giants the edge at quarterback in this game. That doesn’t even include the heresy going on by speaking ill of Tom. Eli had two surefire picks dropped last game because the 49ers defenders like to run into each other. As I said earlier, he threw a pick on the final drive of the last Super Bowl, only nobody told Asante Samuels’ hands about it. Tom Brady is coming off a season in which he threw for the second most yards, ever. He threw six less interceptions than Manning, and 10 more touchdowns, yet because Manning sucked for three quarters all year and played well in 4th quarters, he’s hot. That’s all fine, too. If you’re a Giants fan and you honestly trust Eli Manning in this game, you’re lying to yourself, or you’re my buddy Joey Z, a Giants “fanatic” who I’m positive can’t name their starting cornerbacks, or one of their O Linemen. But I know one thing: Patriots defenders are rarely near each other, so Eli better be careful, because we can’t possibly run  into each other to break up our own interceptions. Watch the tape. Our defenders are rarely even defending.

IX. Wes Welker’s Sidepiece is About to be his Wife, Which is Just Plain Smart

Anna Burns: former Hooters girl, current Viagra replacement.

X. The Game’s Biggest X Factor for the Patriots: See what I did there with the numeral we are on and the topic for it? Anyway, I think the biggest X Factor in this game for the Patriots will be Defensive Ends Rob Ninkovich/Mark Anderson. Remember in the first Super Bowl win for the Pats, when Mike Vrabel rushed from the edge, forcing Kurt Warner into throwing the pick six to Ty Law? Easily the biggest play of that Super Bowl, and the difference in the game. If the Pats can get something like this, or maybe a strip sack scoop-and-score, it will be the difference.

XI. X Factor for the Giants: Mario Manningham. The third head of their “three-headed monster” at Wide Receiver, Manningham is more accurately a wide receiver who catches some touchdowns but rarely impacts the game between the 20s. He has three touchdowns in three playoff games, but just eight total catches and 116 yards in that span. Calling him a monster, or even, marginally difficult to defend is like calling Chad Ochocinco a serviceable wide receiver (who almost made my X Factor for the Patriots because he actually played last time these teams met and burned the Giants for a touchdown that Brady underthrew).

XII. I’m really not sure what happens to numerals in the high-teens. We’ll see. 

XIII. Jason Pierre Paul is a Fool: Look dude, I know your dad is blind, so you may have felt the need to talk more than usual so he knew you were playing in the Super Bowl this week, but why would you give Brady extra motivation? I know everyone tries downplaying this stuff by saying, “It’s the Super Bowl, he shouldn’t need any extra motivation” but that’s like saying guys don’t have extra motivation to hook up with girls when they see them in yoga pants. Sure, you don’t NEED the extra motivation, but it still exists. As soon as Jason Pierre Paul said Tom Brady isn’t God, this Super Bowl put yoga pants on (is your mind blown?). Which is ironic, because I’m pretty sure God made Tom Brady, football, and Yoga pants as man’s ultimate purpose in life. If this next picture is porn, my bad.

If you need a break to just google "girl in yoga pants" that's cool, bro.

XIV. Best Fact of the Week’s Research: Unrelated to anyone in this game, but this is a line in Ray Lewis’ Wikipedia regarding the murder trial he was a part of:  “The white suit Lewis was wearing the night of the killings has never been found.” Umm, duh? Murder 101 says once you stab a dude in his face and he ruins your white suit, you burn those threads. Blood stains hard, no matter how tirelessly the Vietnamese dry cleaner down the street tinkers with it.

XV. Bill Belichick Coaches Football Good: In case you didn’t know. Dude wins like, almost all the football games he coaches. I’m not googling his career record with the Patriots because it would embarrass Tom Coughlin. Speaking of which…

XVI. Wasn’t This Guy Getting Fired? So the Giants go on a nice run down the stretch, save Tom Coughlin his job, then win some playoff games, and now he’s a win away from going to the Hall of Fame? Gosh, two weeks is way too long to give sports writers time to make shit up.

XVII. I’m Watching this Game at Home: Last time we played the Giants in the Super Bowl, I was this cool as hell 21 year-old who was getting a keg with his friends to party and watch the game. That ended with me doing a misery drowning keg stand after the game which I may still be drunk from. This game, I’m back in my living room at home, where three previous Patriots Super Bowls were won.

XVIII. If You Don’t Think I’m Eating Hummus: During the Drafting of this Blog, You Don’t Know Jack.

XIX. This Clown is Supposed to Beat Tom Brady Twice?!?! 

XX. Kelly Clarkson Singing National Anthem: Too soon that I gave her the “XX” numeral because it’s already on all her clothes? Cheap joke, but I’m cheap, so we’re cool.

XXI. Sucks to Be Peyton Manning This Week, Huh? Poor bro is just lying around all half-paralyzed because his neck exploded while his little brother and arch nemesis get elbow deep in his city, and the stadium he built. Brady is just abusing Peyton’s locker, draping his loin-towel all over Manning’s face, splashing on Stetson cologne and leaving UGG mocassins at their altar. It wouldn’t shock me if Brady snuck Gisele in for a quick trip to plowtown at the 50.

XXII. When The Patriots Have the Ball: Expect the offense to be in the hurry up more than ever to keep the Giants vaunted pass rush off their game. The offensive line has been great lately, and if Brady has time, you could see a classic surgical effort in this game. I also think we are going to see some sort of trick play that has been rarely employed this year by the Pats offense. You’ll remember in some of their earlier Super Bowl runs, reverses and even flea flickers factored in to stretch the field. Could Julian Edelman, a college quarterback turned wideout turned defensive back throw a pass?!

XXIII. When the Giants Have the Ball: Expect it to move down the field, quickly. The Patriots defense is improving, but is still a sieve, and reliant on big turnovers and red zone defense. Victor Cruz should be targeted plenty while Hakeem Nicks will try to take the top of the defense. Eli could put up big numbers, but it will be key for the Pats secondary to capitalize on his mistakes, which he is sure to make, as evidenced by the rest of his career.

XXIV. Red Zone Decides the Game: This should be a high scoring affair with teams moving the ball easily, so work done by both sides inside the red zone will likely decide the final outcome. I obviously pre-gamed for the Super Bowl by eating chinese food and watching “A Football Life: Bill Belichick.” In it, he makes a few things quite clear, one being that play in the “red area” gets the exclamation point-underline in his game plans. Additionally, after watching this, how do you not love what a crazy bastard Belichick is? 

XXV. Final Prediction: I just got back from church with my family. I slept on this prediction, prayed for Tom’s health like Gisele asked in her e-mail to our inner circle, and am now fully prepared to break down exactly what will happen in this game. Brady and Eli will both easily throw for 300+ yards. Welker and Cruz will both go over 100. Giants defensive linemen will sack Brady twice. Patriots defensive linemen will sack Manning thrice. Brady will not throw an interception. Manning will throw one. Neither running game will matter in the end, but Woodhead will pick up a few huge first downs because a bear cannot hug a mouse, and that’s what tackling him is like. So far, everything seems pretty close. Unfortunately, that’s before Myra Kraft smiles down upon the field in the fourth quarter. Eli’s pick will come in the end of the game, and give Brady the ball with the score tied and 2:08 remaining. After a methodical drive where Brady is his surgical self, he’ll find Gronk who drags three Giants into the end zone, spikes the ball, and has his ankle disintegrate. Belichick and Brady seal their history with a kiss, and Gisele dances like there’s no tomorrow. I finally recover from the loss in 2008, which marked a quarter life crisis that until now, I have been unable to recover from. FINAL SCORE: Patriots 31, Giants 24. 

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Patriots 38, Eagles 21 (Embarrassed, mostly)

November 29, 2011

Belichick just consistently winning.

Going into this game, you had to like New England’s chances no matter
who started at Quarterback  for the Eagles. One guy literally ran a
dogfighting ring in his backyard, while the other quit on his team
last year, and nearly required an Amber alert when nobody could find
him, and friends thought him to be suicidal. In the old 50/50
psychopath coin flip, the Patriots landed on Vince Young. For the
record, we have a QB who scored a 6 on the Wonderlic (if you’re not
familiar with the test, think one of those annoying internet IQ pop up
ads, for a 4th grader) versus Bill Belichick… arguably the greatest
football mind, ever. This was like Ken Jennings going up against that
supercomputer, Watson, and not even being able to buzz in because it’s
so rigged. Yes, that’s the first and last time Vince Young is Ken
Jennings in any analogy.

Two plays after thinking that, Vince obviously lobbed a 60 yard tear
drop from God himself onto the fingertips of Riley Cooper to set up
the Eagles first touchdown of the day.

After the opening drive stalled on third down by the Pats, it got me
thinking, “Didn’t we use to score a touchdown on opening drives like,
all the time?” Then I thought, “Do we ever do that any more?!” Sure
enough, the Patriots have not scored a touchdown on their opening
drive of the game since week 4 against Oakland (9 plays, 80 yards).
Since then, the Pats have only scored two touchdowns in all the first
quarters of all their games. The 2011 Patriots offense is the 2007
Patriots offense, with a new ignition. Once it gets going, it can
still hum like the old Ferrari in the garage, you just have to worry
that early deficits catch up to this team in the playoffs.

Dan Dierdorff kept describing hits on Brady as, “paying the price for
delivering that throw,” while replays showed Tom being wrapped up and
gently laid upon the grass. Color commentators nowadays love
galvanizing any player/play as games go along. Has Roger Goodell taken
his fuhrer status to the level of spreading the propaganda that no
matter what happens on a football field, it is exciting and
hard-hitting? I’m also tired of hearing how every punk in the league
has matured and truly loves the game. Vince Young apparently did this
over the off-season.

The offside/false start debate has gotten out of control. Philadelphia
dove onto an unhiked ball and it took a minute for the refs to sort
out the penalty. Do these refs really forget why they threw the flag
just because one team is pointing at the other guy?

Benjarvus Green-Ellis is the anti-Maroney if I’ve ever seen it. He
never loses yards, and almost always puts his head down and gets his 4
yards, as evidenced on the Patriots first TD drive capped by, you
guessed it a 4 yard TD run. Sorry about the 4 yard repetitiveness, but
CBS also flashed Benjarvus’ game stats after the drive: 10 rushes for
41 yards. Yup, a 4.1 yard per carry average. On the season, he’s at
3.9 yards per carry, and for his career he currently sits at 4.1.
Sure, he rarely breaks a big run, but with the Patriots passing game
the offense only needs consistency on the ground.

In the second quarter, some dude named Tiquan Underwood, who we signed
because Ochozero was inactive, dropped a wide open touchdown. He
apparently plays football professionally, and somehow smiled his way
back to the huddle. Which is interesting, because I doubt he smiles
when he finds the pink slip in his locker this week.

On the very next play Brady slid in the pocket, directed Branch
mid-route, and hit him along the sidelines uncovered, to walk in for
the touchdown… only it’s not 2004, and Deion Branch now rumbles down
the sidelines like Vince Wilfork trapped in a skinny wide receiver’s
body, so he cuts and trucks and falls to the one yard line.
Thankfully, Benjarvus strolled into the end zone on the next play,
hurting his 4 yard-per-carry average, but getting him a touchdown.

After a sideline interception, New England drove downfield only to
have a long third down pass go through Wes Welker’s hands. This led to
a 39 yard FG for Gostkowski, which he promptly pushed wide, leading to
a Tom Brady sideline triple-swear consisting of the one that rhymes
with hit, followed by a double F-bomb. Stephen Gostkowski has become
the Jonathan Papelbon of the Patriots. If your heart isn’t in your
throat every time he comes on the field (including PATs) you’ve got
better blood pressure than me.

Tom and Wes made their third TD drive much easier… Brady play action,
Welker undresses a cornerback, wide open touchdown strike. Nnamdi
Asomugha may have been hampered by injury, and mostly used to cover
Gronkowski underneath, but the Eagles secondary somehow managed to
look worse than the Patriots in this game.

Vince Young marched Philly right down field before the halftime
two-minute warning, gouging the Patriots secondary with the same exact
play four times in the drive. Yet, in classic Belichick
bend-but-don’t-break fashion, DeSean Jackson had a wide open touchdown
go off his hands because he had T-Rex arms anticipating a big hit. One
obvious about Jackson (and the reason he didn’t get a huge contract in
the off-season) he’s unreal in the open field, but he’s a different
player going across the middle. He also ended up getting benched in
the fourth quarter because of plays like this.

For all their troubles on opening drives of the game, the Patriots
were surgical driving downfield to open the half. Brady moved so
quickly down field one of the Eagles D-Linemen went down with a calf
cramp. To me, this is always one of the funniest sights on a football
field: a 300 pound man crippled by a calf cramp and tapping the muscle
as his leg flails out, unbending from pain as he screams for, “The
little white dude who rubs these things out!”

The second half turned into such a boring blowout that Gronk forgot to
be excited on his fourth quarter touchdown. After nonchalantly walking
towards teammates, it looked like someone had to remind him about his
signature spike.

Losing yesterday and dropping to 4-7 ended any hope the Eagles had at
the playoffs. After beating the rival Giants last week, it was
shocking how quickly the team quit yesterday. Andy Reid has earned the
right after 13 yearsto walk away from this mess of a team after the
season.

New England will be hard-pressed to lose a game the rest of the
season. These next five weeks against Indianapolis, Washington,
Denver, Miami, Buffalo and the Sisters of the Poor should be spent
getting healthy, fine-tuning the offensive problems early, and the
secondary problems always.

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The Five Most Disturbing Things about the Sandusky Scandal

November 17, 2011

It’s the age-old tale: Man makes millions of dollars and gets famous playing and coaching football. Man starts charity for underprivileged youths. Man takes youths to his team’s games while charity thrives. Man ends up showering and sodomizing little boys. Man gets caught in the act and nobody tells anybody.  WHADDAFUHH!?! Unless you’re dating Kate Upton and haven’t seen the light of day in the past week, you know about Jerry Sandusky and the pedophile scandal at Penn St.

This is a tough blog for me to write, for a handful of reasons: not the least of which is how uncomfortable pedophiles make me, 99.9% of humans and every prisoner in a maximum security prison. First and foremost, I generally try not to touch stories about little boys with a ten foot pole, unlike Jerry Sandusky who thoroughly enjoyed touching, hugging, showering and “horsing around” with them (editor’s note: from here on out, pedophile sex will just be known as “horsing around” because it is the favorite term of the Sandusky defense). More importantly, I try not to make light of stories that have literally destroyed the lives of millions of people apart from just the victims in the Sandusky case. However, this is the biggest story in sports, possibly ever, and I’m going to weigh in. I’ll be taking excerpts from the Grand Jury report and compiling them into the FIVE most disturbing aspects of this whole case. I’ll try breaking up these horrific acts with girls in bikinis, because lord knows we’ll be needing them.

If you have no idea about this story, and it's because of Kate, you're excused.

NUMBER 1. “It was about 9:30 p.m. As the graduate assistant entered the locker room doors, he was surprised to find the lights and showers on. He then heard rhythmic, slapping sounds. He believed the sounds to be those of sexual activity… He saw a naked boy, Victim 2, whose age he estimated to be ten years old, with his hands up against the wall, being subjected to anal intercourse by a naked Sandusky.”

Now, I wish I could tell you the report goes on to say that the 28 year old graduate assistant, Mike McQueary, a former player for Penn St., proceeded to sprint into the shower, pull the old man (posterizing a child against the wall) to the ground and beat him beyond recognition with a blunt object… but I can’t. McQueary instead went to his office and called his father, like a child. Now, I wish I could tell you his father gave him the advice to run back into the shower, pull the old man (posterizing a child against the wall) to the ground and stab him in the jugular with a pen from his office… but I cant. McQueary’s father ordered him to come home and talk, then decided he should tell his work superior, Joe Paterno. If this response isn’t almost as disturbing to you as the rape of a child, you’re most likely Mike McQueary.

There’s two kinds of evil in this world: those who do evil, and those who witness it and do nothing, to paraphrase Albert Einstein. Hopefully, you or I never have to witness this sickening act (I now shutter at the sound of a mild game of Patty Cake after hearing Sandusky’s sex described as “rhythmic, slapping sounds”), but if we do, more importantly, we wouldn’t run away, call our daddy, drive home, and decide to call our boss. Is that even real life?! You’re a grown ass man and you let the boy get raped, run home to your dad and don’t even call the police?! McQueary should be sent to jail just so he could experience what Victim 2 did, with people witnessing it and no one coming to his aid. I might pass out and I just got started… here’s a girl in a bikini…

Thank you, Brooklyn.

NUMBER 2. “Curley specifically denied that the graduate assistant reported anal sex or anything of a sexual nature whatsoever and termed the conduct as merely “horsing around…”

Penn St. Athletic Director Tim Curley, ladies and gentlemen! He obviously read the intro to this blog, and knew that “horsing around” met sodomizing a child. Or, back when he used it, the term simply covered his ass. I don’t know about you, but “horsing around'” is what two 10 year olds might do during recess, not what a 60 year old wrinkly man does in the shower with a 10 year old boy. Let’s meet our next winner in the Penn St. administration…

 “Schultz testified that the allegations were “not that serious” and that he and Curley “had no indication that a crime had occurred.” Schultz agreed that sodomy between Sandusky and a child would clearly be inappropriate sexual conduct… Although Schultz oversaw the University Police as part of his position, he never reported the 2002 incident to the University Police or other police agency…”

Senior Vice President for Finance and Business Gary Schultz, everybody!!! Thank goodness, someone at Penn St. has finally been questioned enough by now to CONCEDE the point that sodomy would be INAPPROPRIATE. How about sick? Disgusting? Vile? Heinous? CRIMINAL? Meh, no need to get the police involved in THAT.

“Graham Spanier testified… described it as “Jerry Sandusky in the football building locker area in the shower with a younger child and that they were horsing around in the shower… Spanier denied that it was reported to him as an incident that was sexual in nature…”

Last but certainly not least, Penn State’s President, Mr. Graham Spanier, folks!!! This guy is so brilliant, so esteemed, and well regarded as to run a university with over a billion dollar endowment. So naturally, when he got a report of a guy “horsing around” in a shower with a little boy, it was not reported as sexual in nature. WHERE AM I?! I swear I know people from Pennsylvania and they never once described pedophilia in a shower as “horseplay.” Sure, I’ve never once discussed pedophilia in a shower with someone from Pennsylvania, but I don’t think that’s the point. Every last one of these officials deserves to rot in prison in the shower stall next to Sandusky, so he can define “horsing around” for them once and for all.

GIVE ME A GIRL IN A BIKINI!!!

Phew, Eva to the rescue.

 

 NUMBER 3. “Victim 1 testified that Sandusky would “crack his back”… With Victim 1 lying on top of him, face to face, Sandusky would run his arms up and down the boy’s back and “crack” it. Sandusky then began to blow on Victim 1’s bare stomach… Victim 1 testified that ultimately, Sandusky performed oral sex on him more than 20 times through 2007 and early 2008.”

I wish this could somehow be construed as a joke, but I am 100% serious when I say I blame the movie Wedding Crashers for this sex move performed by Sandusky. Without a doubt in my mind, Sandusky decided to try his hand at a game of  Tummy Sticks because of this… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JH3Hrtth8fI 

Disturbing as that may be, Sandusky invented a new game with these boys that might top it: “back cracking.” It’s a real twisted motheruffer who decides to ritualistically climb into bed with the boys he has sleep over at his house and crack their backs each night before they sleep. Sometimes, you watch TV or a movie and think they’ve done it all, then you read this Grand Jury testimony and realize unless you’re actually a pedophile, you can’t think like one. Imagine thinking this is completely normal. You climb out of the bed your wife is sleeping in, scamper downstairs to the bedroom (because pedophiles don’t walk, they scamper, like rodents) you molest underpriveleged kids from your charity in, and “crack their back.” This might be so sick it embarrasses the definition of disturbing. If I don’t get a girl in a bikini right now, I might vomit.

Don't you dare call me on the fact that this isn't a bikini! Carrie Keegan, from Attack of the Show just saved my life.

NUMBER 4. “Victim 4 was listed, along with Sandusky’s wife, as a member of Sandusky’s family part for the 1998 Outback Bowl and the 1999 Alamo Bowl… Victim 4 would frequently stay overnight at Toftrees with Sandusky and the football team prior to home games. Sandusky’s wife was never present… Sandusky would wrestle with him and maneuver him into a position in which Sandusky’s head was at Victim 4’s genitals and Victim 4’s head was at Sandusky’s genitals. Victim 4 described Sandusky rubbing his genitals on Victim 4’s face and inserting his erect penis in Victim 4’s mouth.”

Sorry if you got confused during this last one, but let me break it down for your: Sandusky 69’d with this kid. Karma Sutra 101, the Grand Jury just can’t put it that bluntly. Now, here’s the part where Joe Paterno had to know shit was coming down on him. Sure, he might have passed the buck on the shower rapes when he told his bosses and thought it would be handled. But how senile do you have to be if you don’t realize when your assistant coach has a new flavor of the week shacking up with him during team hotel stays without his wife? Only that flavor happens to be a train of varying boys. Victim 4 wasn’t the only kid getting treated to games, he was just the newest model.

Paterno knew this was going down, and it’s probably why Sandusky was told he wouldn’t become the head coach when he left back in 1999 (but got to hang around campus to keep raping boys from Second Mile). But come on people, to say Joe Paterno didn’t look the other way during this is beyond absurd. Fortunately for the Occupy Wall Street folks, the Penn St. student body made their rally look smart, as they took to the campus in protest of Paterno’s firing last week. Those kids should have been pepper sprayed, rounded up in a net, and dropped into a Nittany Lion cage (and I have no idea if that would be a bad thing since a Nittany Lion could be a house cat for all I know). You don’t get to reside over all this morbidly sick stuff and not lose your job. It’s called accountability. Even Occupy Wall Street would agree on THAT.

Erin Heatherton, a new Victoria's Secret Model. I've got nothing else.

NUMBER 5. “I could say that I have done some of those things. I have horsed around with kids. I have showered after workouts. I have hugged them and I have touched their legs without intent of sexual contact… We were showering and horsing around and he [the boy] actually turned all the showers on and was actually sliding across the floor and we were, as I recall, possibly like snapping a towel” -Jerry Sandusky 11/14/2011 in an interview with Bob Costas on NBC’s Rock 30.

I don’t know why, but reading the Grand Jury report was almost so surreal, none of the stuff sunk in. Then, I listened to Sandusky’s interview with Bob Costas and my stomach knotted up like I chased week old Sushi with month old Milk. Here’s this sick bastard on national TV, speaking to his innocence and admitting to showering with boys, horsing around and touching their legs. Claiming no sexual contact, just some towel snapping?! This is chilling. It’s the stuff you can’t make up. The horror story often read about, now suddenly has a voice personifying the monster. Here’s hoping Jerry Sandusky gets what he deserves: to live out his life in a prison, where even the criminals know the one crime worse than murder.

Stay tuned…

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Why I Couldn’t Care Less About Theo Epstein Leaving

October 26, 2011

Boy Wonder. The Man Who Broke the Curse. The Mastermind. Inventor of the “Scouting and Player Development Machine.” Genius.

However you liked to refer to Theo Epstein over the past ten years, his era in Boston has ended in a shitstorm that I think gives the best nickname of them all: Houdini. Did this guy who just oversaw the biggest collapse in regular season baseball history really just sign a five year, 18.5 million dollar contract to run the Cubs? The man who signed John Lackey to a five-year, $82.5 million contract, only to see Lackey post the worst season of any starter in baseball history (literally) two season later, not only didn’t get fired, but he also got a promotion?! The genius who signed Carl Crawford, to patrol the smallest left field in baseball… then have him bat 7th because we already had our top six hitters in the lineup, to a seven-year $142 million contract not only watched Crawford put up a sub-.300 on-base percentage, but also got a promotion in job title? Am I the only one who feels like this…

If you agree this makes less sense than Helen Keller riding a bicycle in Times Square, keep reading. Otherwise, you’re probably a delusional Cubs fan, and I’d recommend you continue this blissful fit of ignorance and stop reading. But before you go, here’s this peace offering…

Melanie Iglesias does Youtube flipbook videos. I don't know what that means either, but you should watch them.

Somehow, Theo Epstein is made of teflon in the baseball world. He quit on the Red Sox in 2005 citing his “heart and soul” wasn’t into the job when he got offered a three year $4.5 million deal. This guy who supposedly lived and died with the Red Sox growing up in Brookline, Mass. didn’t have his heart and soul in running the team?! I don’t even need to explain how absurd this is. Then, for whatever reason, ownership didn’t get pissed and move on from the spoiled brat who ditched town in a Gorilla suit: THEY BEGGED HIM TO RETURN.

In the mean time, Theo’s replacement at the time (and replacement now) Ben Cherington, swung the deal that won the Red Sox the 2007 World Series when he traded top prospects Hanley Ramirez and Anibal Sanchez for Josh Beckett and Mike Lowell. Lowell won the MVP of that World Series, and Beckett was the team’s best pitcher. Epstein is on record as saying he wouldn’t have made that deal, which is fine. We wouldn’t have won that World Series, either, though.

Now, after the epic collapse, a manager who lost control of his team, and a team that committed mutiny worse than Jack Sparrow’s crew, Epstein moves to a team that hasn’t won a World Series since 1908. We are all about to find out if the boy really is a genius. The Cubs are an absolute mess right now. They just won 71 games, they have no star players, a bunch of bad contracts and a weak minor league system. When Theo took over in 2002, the Red Sox had a nucleus of players left behind that carried the team within an inning of the 2003 World Series. With some minor tweaks, a lucky free agent signing (David Ortiz) and a Curt Schilling falling in his lap, the Red Sox finally broke the Babe’s curse the following season. If the Cubs can play .500 ball this year, it’s an enormous success.

What everybody was thinking...

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41 Men More Influential than Tom Brady: Impossible

October 19, 2011

When Gisele picks you, it's tough to top.

This week, AskMen.com unveiled their latest list of the “50 Most Influential Men of 2011,” and the publication basically blasphemed all over the place.  All the usual suspects are there: Jobs, Obama, Zuckerberg, Clooney et al. Obviously, Tom Brady is on the list because he’s in a rarified air reserved for the likes of DaVinci, Galileo, Franklin, Einstein and Moses. The real indignation isn’t that Brady is somehow 41 spots below #1, because it’s possible 41 saints and Greek gods are ahead of him. Where AskMen.com loses all its credibility is when you dissect some of the men ranked ahead of Brady. The top four are: Steve Jobs, Seal Team Six, Larry Page of Google, and Warren Buffett. I guess some arguments could be made for these computer geeks, economic genius’ and skilled assassins, but Tom still easily defeats them.  Here are just ten of the men ranked ahead of Tom that make less sense than Helen Keller playing Scrabble.

#7 Prince William: Actually one of the least influential on this list. Dude doesn’t have a discernible skill aside from losing his hair at an oddly early age. Rumors persist that this is why Tom Brady grew his hair long, to get some plugs. Whether that’s true or not, it’s just another example of why he’s more influential than Prince William. Dude dissected the problem and solved it.  Seriously though, does it get more uninfluential than being the “guy in line to be the guy in line to be the king of a country that no longer is ruled by a monarchy?”

#8 Anonymous, hacking group that promotes “civil disobedience”  on the web: I don’t even know what this one means. Like, is “Anonymous” the groups name? Or are they so sneaky and covert that they don’t even have a name, just an unwritten hacking stroke deep in a systems mainframe. Aside from being nameless and faceless, and thus, not Tom Brady, I haven’t heard one thing these guys have done besides give my PC from ’98 the Trojan Horse virus. That shit was pretty fucked up though. Fried a motherboard like Colonel Sanders.

#9 Ryan Gosling: Canadian Actor- Homie trails Brady in so many regards it’s not even funny, the least of which is Americanness. This Candian born actor is best known for his role in “The Notebook.” Sure, that movie might have revolutionized the dating game, and made it cool for bros all over to include it in their favorite movies section on facebook (this bro, included), but ultimately, it’s a crappy chick flick. To further weaken his cause, I just googled “Ryan Gosling girlfriend” and the top story is from 2010 about  how he is finally ready to move on from his ex, Rachel McAdams.  If you’re an influential man, I should be able to google your girlfriend and be wading through an internet cesspool of chicks linked to you. Google “Tom Brady girlfriend” and you get a story about him marrying Gisele. Boom. Dripping in influence.

#12 Jon Stewart- Daily Show Host/Comedian: Let me get this straight. The guy who isn’t even the most influential fake-news studio host on Comedy Central is supposedly more influential than Tom Brady. This scenario highlights the lack credibility in this list. Stewart has long been the least funny of of the nightly news duo, as Colbert consistently kills it while Stewart fishes for laughs with his annoying shrieks. Put it this way, would the jester ever be considered more influential than the King? Then how can a comedian be more influential than a quarterback? Varsity quarterbacks got girls in high school, class clowns played Dungeons and Dragons.

#13 Andrew Mason: CEO of Groupon– AskMen definitely didn’t do their research on this one. First off, Groupon doesn’t even work for businesses. People get your shit for cheap, once, then move on to the next place that will give them shit for cheap. So on and so forth. No buyer resiliency is seen. This business model is failing faster than an Obama stimulus package, and Andrew Mason should have gotten out while he could make billions and buy sports teams. Anyone remember how Mark Cuban made his money? Me either, but Yahoo gave him a couple billion for it at the time. Maybe if this dude owned the team Tom Brady played quarterback for, he’d be more influential.

 #21 Barack Obama- President, United States of America: Didn’t the country get downgraded? Doesn’t that mean the President of America is like, the same as Cuba or something? I know Tom Brady is more influential than Fidel Castro, so without getting too political, let’s just say this is obvious.

#24 Anderson Cooper- Journalist/TV Host: If this were a list of most influential gay men, Anderson Cooper would be way high up, and definitely higher than Tom Brady. I feel like Anderson Cooper and Neil Patrick Harris are in the same boat. Like, out of nowhere, everyone found out they were gay, and suddenly things made sense. In both cases, you have to believe these guys hooked up with tons of chicks while they lied to themselves about it feeling right.  Unfortunately, this isn’t just a list for “men” and in that regard, the host of any poorly rated CNN show can’t possibly outrank Tom Brady. I mean, have you seen the ratings for an NFL Game that Brady plays in? Blows AC-360 out of the water.

#30 Peter Dinklage- Midget Actor: One issue I have consistently felt has plagued the little people community is their lack of focus in declaring what they want to be known as. For a while, midget was bad, and might still be for all I know. Then they wanted to be dwarves, but everyone found that a bit too Tolkien. Nowadays, I have no clue what they want to be called, I just know that this Peter Dinklage bit off more than he could chew or reach. Tom Brady is 6’4” and runs the 2-minute drill in his sleep. Dinklage was the angry midget in “ELF” who is now on “Game of Thrones” and for some reason, ranks ahead of Brady. Something is disproportionate here, and it’s not the limb-torso ratio of Dinklage.

#35 Jimmy Fallon- Full-sized Actor: Now I know AskMen is just  with all of us. Like, really? Jimmy Fallon influences more people than Tom Brady? Dude hosts a talk show at like 1am. If you’re awake at 1am on a weeknight and you’re watching Jimmy Fallon, you probably don’t have a job to wake up for the next morning. If you do, you probably suck at that job, and at life. Sure, Fallon has played a lovable loser just fine in some movies, and he has even made me laugh twice, but to say he’s more influential than Tom is heretical.

#41 Julian Assange- Wikileaks Founder: Remember when Wikileaks leaked all that censored top secret stuff and shit was about to hit the fan? Me neither. One of the biggest teases of the internet age had to be Wikileaks, right? This dude was like sexually assaulting chicks, fleeing to Sweden and lawyering up because the whole world was trying to sue his ass for leaking secrets that put security at stake. Since then?  No idea. If anything, this just shows how weak Wikileaks was, and how Assange has no influence. When Tom Brady was spying on people, he won Super Bowls. Assange did it and got nothing.

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No Occupation? Occupy Wall Street!

October 12, 2011

Some time last week, a bunch of hippies decided to storm Wall Street like it was the Bastille during the French Revolution. If you don’t know what the Bastille is, you’re probably one of those hippies occupying Wall Street. Really, this whole fiasco of the uncoordinated, unintelligible mass of dirty people rallying together around the concept of: “rich people suck,” should surprise no one. The hippies of the 60s and 70s were bound to produce offspring that held similar ideals such as peace, love, poverty and pot to such a high degree. The only thing I don’t get is why it happened now. Like, some time last week, Bank of America realized they were going out of business and stuff, so they announced they were charging everyone $5 a month to have a checking account.

Next, a series of events happened that left America’s collective head spinning and  searching for answers. Picketers were stifling our clean-cut businessmen who smell of dry cleaned designer suits and cologne with the rancid stink of white-people-dreadlocks, hemp necklaces, unwashed cargo shorts, Birkenstocks and beards. Suddenly, Steve Jobs was dead, and the 99% were being spoken for by less than .0000000000001 percent (math on this could be highly inaccurate). I don’t know about you, but after all that, I could use some 22 year-old model… Caitlin O’Connor!

Pretty sure Capitalism yields pictures like this. I think I read it in an Econ textbook somewhere.

Suddenly, I find myself on a bus home from New York City, where I thought the only occupying was taking place. Little did I know I would be greeted by Boston hippies of a similar ilk making sure they can catch the subway home after rallying. Now, it didn’t surprise me that these people had no car to drive themselves into the city with. I overheard them talking and was able to draw a few concrete conclusions. They are as follows.

1- These people don’t have jobs. Obviously.

2- These people don’t know how to create jobs, they just want to get angry at a global collapse and expect the educated people who work hard, to figure out how to save them. It reminds me of last week’s episode of The Office when Ryan complains to Pam how everybody wants to be rich, but nobody wants to work for it. Pam replies, “Didn’t you come in at 10:15 today?!” To which Ryan simply smiles and shrugs: content with that trade off.

3- These people are confused, even within their protest. Not that you can blame them. Like I said, they decided to rally over a $60 annual fee from a big bank, months after a double dip recession, and years after the initial crash.

4- These people are misguided, to say the least. Their best friend, a gargantuan government, is smart enough to know you can’t just let the financial sector that runs a capitalist economy fail. Unfortunately, the government has been paid back almost all the money they lent out to the banks in their bailouts, only there still aren’t any jobs. Shouldn’t the protesters be outside Washington after multiple failed stimulus bills, TARP funds, and job packages that did nothing but add some seasonal Census workers.

5- One good thing came of these protests. Her name is Kat, from Bayside NYC.

Too bad she's probably a Vegan. Turnoff.

Maybe the best part about all this is that these protesters get arrested, and think they are martyrs on the level of suicide bombers in Jilalabad. High comedy all around. I directly heard one woman who was a part of the Boston occupation (ironic word when you think about it) say, “I just wish they wouldn’t get arrested tonight, there was hardly any news coverage!” This summed up the whole situation so fittingly I couldn’t help but smile and think of capitalism.

Stay tuned…

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