You might have started noticing recently that I’m actually linking things in my pieces. Toastmaster Ken Arneson has installed some rad tools at the place we write, which I think will make for a more enjoyable read at The Juice. (Now if only I had a human proofreader.) With the advent of these new tech shortcuts, I plan on doing more columns which feature a few topics. If you see Schizo Scott, you will know it is somewhat of a potpourri.
If you missed it, the Cubs have been shopping Mark Prior, mainly in the pursuit of Miguel Tejada. My favorite story on the subject was written by The Daily Southtown’s Paul Ladewski. Ladewski interviews baseball’s craziest former relief pitcher (and yeah I’m counting Jeff Reardon) Mike Marshall. Now I’m not a pitching mechanics guy, I leave that subject to my partner, but Marshall has had enough wacked moments for me to question some of his validity. While I’m generally a fan of the people who take on the establishment, Marshall has too much of the LBJ killed JFK in him for me to buy his theory.
Another pitcher who is being shopped is Jon Garland. Garland must have seen the crazy train contracts given to Millwood, Burnett and Washburn and thought, “back up the money trucks, you dumb phucks.” With contracts like these, he had to become even more lukewarm on the idea of taking a 3 year deal from the White Sox. I agree with the Sox strategy of not giving pitchers more than a 3 year deal, as unless you have an unlimited payroll like the Yankees or Red Sox, one arm injury can wreck your payroll for too long.
Both the A’s and the Chisox seem to have a similar idea of picking up another starting pitcher (Vasquez, Loaiza), even though they are already loaded at the position, with the idea of trading a hotter model (Garland, Zito) to a seller’s market. While other teams are getting most of the media attention, the White Sox and A’s are the only 2 teams left, who can dictate to all the other pitching poor suitors. I mean what is the worst thing that could happen, they have 6 or 7 quality starting pitchers for the year?
Time to follow-up a couple of items I covered in regards to the stand-up comedy world. In this month’s Spin Magazine, they report that Mitch Hedburg did die of a drug overdose. Not surprising news, as he had battled drugs for quite awhile, especially after he signed a big money contract with one of the networks in the late 90’s.
Another subject discussed here which has cropped up again is the Larry the Cable Guy/”Git ‘R Done” saga. First it was Doug Stanhope on his website begging to have the phrase eradicated and now it’s David Cross weighing in. You might be surprised to discover that I have mixed feelings on the controversy. While I’m a much bigger fan of Cross’ act, LCB (real name Dan Whitney) is a good guy from what I’ve heard from friends who have dealt with him and his comedy is harmless. This link at Deadfrog,com covers the redneck said/alternative comic said debate.
In some ways, David Cross’ act is as pandering to his audience as LCB’s is to his. They both are great marketers, it’s just unfortunate for Cross that most long-haul truckers aren’t looking for an ascerbic comic’s view that George W. is the anti-Christ. This hurts Cross’ merchandising potential, as “Git R’ Done” works better on a coffee mug than “Your Government Is Lying to You”. As a natural contrarian, I’m drawn to alienating my audience, which might be a partial reason why I play the Nike tour of standup much of the year, while these 2 have built rabid followings.
Scott’s Tivo Note: If you see there is a repeat episode of Comedy Central’s “Last Laff 2005”, I highly recommend its truly inspired hilarity. Greg Giraldo’s standup is great as usual, David Spade set is as good as I’ve seen from him in years, while the disgusting Lisa Lampanelli is hard to describe, but here is my attempt. Lampanelli is Sarah Silverman, but without the cute schtick to take some of the edge off her material. She doesn’t wear well over a long set, but for 5 minutes, she gets at your inner racist like some extremely politically incorrect Don Rickles. The best part of the special just might be the sketch Andy Dick does as a planner for Tom and Katie’s wedding. He expertly skewers Scientology and everything wacked about it and the Top Gunner. It’s so pointedly funny that Andy Dick now sits above Eli Lilly (maker of Prozac) and Brooke Shields on the Scientology hitlist. Add David Cross, Lewis Black, Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, a couple more great sketches, a preview of new Chappelle show clips, plus Death Cab for Cutie and this Comedy Central show is what SNL can only dream of anymore.