Did they name oranges because of their color, or did name the color after the fruit?
I guess this is the All-Entertainment Review post or some such today.
First up, TV!
I watched the rest of the first season of Man v Food. I went to click "next episode" and the button was grayed out! Noooo!!!! No more episodes! It snuck up on me! If I had known I was watching the last one, I would have savored it a bit more! Ah, well... Adam's final challenge was at a German restaurant, where he had to eat a yard-long sausage along with two big side dishes in under an hour. He beat that one. I didn't track his win/loss record for the season, but I'd say it was about 50%. He lost to the 120-ounce milkshake challenge in St Louis. That one almost made me vomit just watching. He lost the 7.5 pound breakfast burrito in um... somewhere in California... don't recall... and he lost the giant 12-egg omelet challenge by 2 bites... he gave up, with just 2 bites left! The omelet was so huge, it is served on a pizza tray. Something about eggs... can't eat as many as you think...
But he won his share as well. Anything spicy was usually a victory for him. The ramen noodles from hell, the atomic wings, the molten curry, the habanero fritters & salsa... it didn't look fun, but spicy was ok. He had one challenge where he had to eat a dozen habanero hot wings, then lick the sauce from his fingers and then have to wait 5 minutes before using a napkin or drinking milk/water and just let it burn. Looked like he was going to die... but he did set the new chili-dog record at one place, powering down 17 big chili dogs and setting the new bar for future challengers.
The San Jose episode, he ate at this place that made a 17-inch long, 5.5-pound burrito called "burritozilla"... he wasn't there to challenge it, just to sample some food, but he put the challenge out to everyone there to attempt to eat the thing, and Joey Chestnut was there, who is the reigning world's competitive eating champion... dude powered down that monster in just over three minutes... O M G. If I could rip that scene and post it here, I would. In fact, lemme see if I can find it on YouTube... BRB...
Bingo! What luck! OK, watch this...
I n s a n e. Cool show.
Next up, Movies!
I watched a surprisingly awesome documentary intriguingly titled Harvard Beats Yale 29-29. It recounts a famous college football game from 1968 between Harvard and Yale, with both university's undefeated football teams facing each other in the last game of the season. You'd think it would be boring, but it was awesome. Even though both teams were undefeated, the Yale team was by far the better team, acknowledged by all. The Yale quarterback had never lost a game that he'd played in, going back to the 7th grade... that is insane. So it was really the quintessential David vs Goliath scenario, complete with the fatal over-confidence, dumb mistakes, lucky breaks and miracles that you'd expect, along with the animosity of the Yale crowd and their condescending chants throughout the game. Yale dominated Harvard most of the game, and even led by 16 points with only 3 minutes to play.
Watching Harvard capitalize on a series of breaks and score a TD on the last play of the game, and then the 2 point conversion with 0:00 on the clock to end it in a tie... they had absolutely no business hanging with Yale, much less tying them. It was awesome. To this day, the Yale players that were in that game consider it a loss, and the Harvard guys a win, even though it was a tie. Throughout the film, they interview the players from both sides, which is fascinating in and of itself, especially that actor Tommy Lee Jones was a player on the Harvard team. He's got unexplanably riveting screen presence. It was just a very cool documentary, I can't explain it.
Next up, Books!
I have pulled an incredible monologue out of The Virtues of War to share with you tonight. As I've mentioned before, occasionally I'll come across awesome monologues while reading that are so strong and rich that I would love the opportunity to perform them onstage. This is a great example. Let me set the stage...
Alexander the Great has been leading his army of 45,000 (or so) east, driving back the Persians and trying to draw out Darius, the Persian King, to head-to-head battle. When the day of battle finally arrives, Alexander is victorious, though his forces were outnumbered by more than 5-to-1, in every facet (light infantry, heavy infantry, ranged, cavalry, etc.). He simply out-strategized the Persian King, and came extremely close to capturing and killing him. But Darius escapes. Alexander gives chase with a small unit until dark, and then abandons chase and returns to the battlefield - to a scene that horrifies him. His own troops, looting and pillaging the Persian camp and running amok, taking spoils... he grabs a passing officer, who then has the officers round up all the troops and he addresses them...
Everything I have loved and labored for is folly.
This day will be acclaimed a great victory! Indeed it was. Until you fouled and polluted it! Corps sergeant major, array the troops in march order. Have I not forbidden plunder? By Zeus, is that the first standing order of this army or not? Are you soldiers? I called you my brothers. Together, I believed, no force on earth could stand against us. Yet we have met that force this day. It is our own wicked and ungovernable hearts!
When I saw you fight today, my countrymen, I saw men I would lead with pride against the phalanxes of hell. I saw comrades by whose side I would lay down my life with joy. To count myself among your corps, I felt, would be renown eternal and fame everlasting. Victory! Before today, I believed it to be everything. But you have shown me my error.
You have disgraced the most glorious triumph in the history of Western arms. You have brought shame upon yourselves and upon this corps. But most of all, you have dishonored me. For a man hearing of this day will not say, 'This rape was performed by Timon,' or 'That outrage was the work of Axiochus.' No, he will say these acts were committed by men serving under Alexander. Your misdeeds have blackened my name, for you are me, and I am you.
Do we march for plunder, brothers? Is gold our aim, like merchants? By Zeus, I will cut my own throat if you tell me you believe that. Is it enough to rout the foe, to prove ourselves the greater brutes? Then build my pyre. I will kindle it myself before yielding to such want of imagination and such deficit of desire.
Fame imperishable and glory that will never die - that is what we march for! To light that flame that death itself cannot quench. That I will achieve, and by the sword of Almighty Zeus, you will work it with me, every one of you!
Brothers, I will suffer your crimes this day out of my love for you only. But hear me now and sear these words into your hearts: that man who disgraces this army again, I will not chastise as I do this night, as a father punishes his son with care and concern for their character, but will banish that man from me and from this company forever.
Now get out of my sight, the lot of you, except officers and generals. To you, I have more to say.
Ultimate responsibility for this debacle lies with me. I have not impressed sufficiently upon you, my officers, the code of chivalry by which I expect you and this army to conduct yourselves. Therefore I shall take nothing from the spoils. That portion that would have been mine will be distributed to our wounded and mutilated comrades and donated to raise memorials for our fallen.
I loved it when I first read it, I loved it when I re-read it, and I've loved it every time since then. I even have costuming, blocking, cadence, delivery, build-up/pacing all in my head already... dang. I wonder if I could get away with making a page on Wagnervana for the monologues I'll collected. I'm sure I'd have to get permission from all the authors... copyright law is a tricky thing...
And now, Gaming!
Check out this series of pictures. A photographer named Marc da Kunha Lopes is apparently a video game fan, and... well, lemme post a couple pics here from his series called The Games Factory...
That is the workshop, he says, where the Sonic the Hedgehog games are made. This next one is the workshop where Pong was made...
I'm a fan of absurdism to begin with, plus a video game fan to boot, so this one hit my nerd button from two directions. There are several other pics in the series. Here's the link if you want to check it out...
In related entertainment news, thanks to a substantial Amazon gift card birthday windfall, I have made great progress in loading up my cart with lots o' goodies. The Band of Brothers DVD set is there (stunningly awesome show), a new Logitech G9 mouse is there, an expansion pack for Fallout 3 is in there, that book on Calvin and Hobbes creator Bill Watterson is in there (mentioned it here a month or two ago...), and a bunch of used Fantasy books by a variety of authors are in there as well. It makes me feel happy to just look at it all! I shall pull the trigger on it all soon (I hope! Havah!) and then wait anxiously for it all to arrive! YAY!!!!
Well, I think that's enough nonsense for today. Be sure to check the Director's Cut of today's thread over at Wagnervana, to see some additional content that didn't make it into the Theatrical Release of this post here. Until tomorrow, remember, I'm letting you off easy... I was going to ask for the whole wig!