Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Want a World Series Title, Cubs Fans? You Won't Like This Idea!

April showers make me cranky. You know what else makes me cranky? Another baseball season rolling in, and 1908 is still a relevant year for all Cubs fans. Enough is enough. It's time to take a good, long look at the Chicago Cubs and figure out what needs to be changed in order to finally bring a title to the North Side.  The solution is simple: Wrigley has to go.

While you're busy choking on your caffeinated beverage, allow me to compose a pro/con list, as we all should do when facing a big decision.

Pros of Wrigley Field:
1. Tradition
2. Ivy
3. Scoreboard
4. Bar scene

Cons of Wrigley Field:
1. That aforementioned "Tradition" is nothing but one disappointment after another.
2. Curses
3. The always-present smell of urine, perhaps due to..
4. The pig trough urinals
5. Sitting and watching a game is uncomfortable, which is far from ideal
6. Old Style
7. Below-average food
8. Where's the jumbotron?
9. Really, Mr. Antiquated Scoreboard, the only stats you're giving me are AVG, HR, and RBI? Is this 1940? Have the Germans occupied Poland?
10. Ok, so where do I park?
11. Oh, here's some parki....30 DOLLARS????
12. 7th Inning Stretch Celebrity Singers
13. 92 years of futility

For those of you screaming that it's been 100-plus years of futility and not 92, pat yourselves on the back. You sure do know your Cubs. But they moved to Wrigley in 1916. Know how many titles the Cubs have won since then? This is a tough one, take your time.

1945. 1969. 2003. Goats, Bartmans, and Miracle Mets. There's way too much terrible history to keep playing in Wrigley Field. 

I can hear all you naysayers now. "Blasphemy! How dare you, sir? What about the scoreboard? For God's sake, what about the IVY? WAAAAAAA!!!"

I've talked to so many people that want to keep Wrigley open for those two reasons alone. Scoreboard and ivy. I'm fairly certain it wouldn't be rocket science to have another ivy-covered wall and a similar scoreboard in a new stadium. What's that? It won't be the same? That's right. As you take in the sights, your other senses won't be assaulted by the delicacies of a 95-year-old stadium.

Ask yourself this question, as a Cubs fan. Do you care more about the lure of Wrigley Field than you do about a championship team? I think you do. I think, deep down in places you don't talk about at parties, you relish the Lovable Losers tag and take comfort in knowing another futile season is underway. Sure, teams win the World Series every year, but how many teams have gone more than a century without doing it? Just one. 

News flash: That's not something to be proud of. I'm sick of Wrigley and the effect it has on the Cubs and its fans. All breakups are tough, and breakups with manipulative, trashy tramps are even tougher. But we can do it. Then, finally, the Cubs take home the title at brand new, beautiful Bartman Field. 

That's right, Bartman Field. That'd be a nice middle finger extended to Tradition.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Crank: High Voltage Trailer Cracks Me Up, Might Cause Me To Actually See Movie

Jason Statham isn't a one-trick pony or anything. The guy can really act. The Transporter was followed by The Transporter 2. Then came Crank. Then Death Race. And don't look now, but Crank 2: High Voltage opens today. I thought Philip Seymour Hoffman had the widest range of characters in his repertoire. Wrong! Watch these five aforementioned films and you'll be shocked to see Statham's ability to slightly tweak his bloodied, intensely pained facial expressions. The man's a genius. 

If his past grosses are any indication, we can expect Crank 2 to haul in about $20M this weekend. I would predict it to be more, but it's up against a Crowe/Affleck conspiracy flick as well as another Zac Efron tween machine. 

As Oscar-worthy as the Crowe and Efron movies look, I think I might spend my dough to see Crank: High Voltage this weekend. Why? If the title of this post didn't help, I just saw the greatest TV film trailer of all time. Here it is.

Have you ever played Mad Gab? It's an infuriating game. It gives you a few words to read aloud in order to figure out what it is you're actually supposed to be saying. If you ever want someone to hate you forever, get him Mad Gab. Here's an example.

Abe Hum Pen Thin Height = A Bump In The Night

It seems easy with the answer there, but try reading just Abe Hum Pen Thin Height over and over and see how smart you sound. It's like learning how to read all over again, except this time you're past puberty and your voice has changed. And instead of getting gold stars, you're getting laughed at. Reading sure is fun!

Anyway, the C: HV trailer has one of those puzzles too. Can you find it? I'll give you a hint. It's about midway through. Give up? Okay, so the narrator tells us "He'll try anything..." and then an old woman says "He treated me like his hot little whore." That alone would be hilarious enough, but then the narrator finishes his sentence. Now, is it just me, or does this Mad Gab make sense?

To Keep His Heart On = To Keep His Hardon

To tip it in, immediately after the narrator says "To keep his heart on," Statham is jumped by Amy (Not So) Smart who coos "I know how this game works!" Wow. 

Okay, so if you like subtlety in your movies, you should probably look elsewhere.

What I love about this is that C: HV is completely unapologetic about what it is. It's not trying to trick us into thinking it has a dynamite screenplay or even a plot outside of "Psycho Needs Adrenaline for 90 Minutes or He Dies." It's an in-your-face action movie that probably will have about 300 "Yeah, right" moments throughout, but it doesn't care. It has guns, women, blood, and explosions, and it's not sorry about it. 

That kind of honesty is refreshing and should be rewarded. That's why I'll illegally download go see Crank: High Voltage this weekend.