11 January 2006

Gervais Podcast, Tavarez the Mental, LOST Returns...

So I’ve had the new iPod for a couple weeks now (got it after X-mas by culling various gift monies and gift certificates)- it’s the 30 gB with video. I got the black one. Now it’s a necklace.

Anyway, so I’ve been playing around with it and adding stuff- it’s bigger than the one I originally had (and it hasn’t been dunked in water yet!), so I’ve been pulling all the CDs that didn’t make the cut on the last one and loading them onto this one. Great, mind-numbing fun. I can’t tell you how valuable it is to me to be able to have Fantomas’ Delirium Cordia on my iPod now. My life is re-affirmed.

What I wanted to do right off the bat is use a couple newer iPod thingys that I hadn’t yet taken advantage of- videos (obviously) and podcasts (not as obviously). For videos- apparently they’ve rigged the iPod so that the format for videos it will accept to load are so specific, you more or less have to resign to purchasing them on iTunes (unless there’s some easy end-around I’m too idiot to have figured). So, I started with a couple (the videos/ episodes of TV shows cost $1.99) right off the bat- the video for “Tribute” by Tenacious D, and the original Matt Foley motivational speak sketch from SNL. Both inner circle Hall of Famers.

Watching the video on a little screen like that with such great picture quality was a fucking scene, man. Blew me away. Seriously, unreal.

Of course, then I moved to picking up a few stray songs on iTunes as well-

  • Killer Mike- “Akshon (Yeah!)”

  • Keane- “Somewhere Only We Know”

  • Fear- “I Love Livin’ In the City”

  • Busdriver- “Imaginary Places”

  • Liam Lynch- “United States of Whatever”

  • Europe- “Final Countdown” [GOB. Heh heh.]

  • ELO- “Do Ya”

  • I only had a live version of “Livin’ in the City,” from the Decline of Western Civilization soundtrack. Fear is awesome. That may have been the greatest thing John Belushi ever did- smuggle them onto live, broadcast television. Genius.

    Most important (if you could say that) however, was the podcasts discovery. Absolutely brilliant. For those not aware- they’re totally free. You go onto iTunes, “subscribe” to one, and it downloads all the available “episodes.” Then, every time you open iTunes, it updates that shit for you automatically, and you put it on your pod when and if you wish.

    I did the only one I was sure I’d like right off the bat- the Ricky Gervais Show from Guardian Unlimited. These are all ostensibly radio shows that you’re downloading, and it can be sports talk, records, talk shows- you name it. Now it’s a necklace.

    The Gervais show consists of Ricky, his writing partner from The Office and Extras Stephen Merchant (played the agent in Extras), and “producer” Karl Pilkington. Here’s the rub- Gervais and Merchant are, on their own, very funny. No doubt about that. But Karl Pilkington is another world altogether. I can’t get a handle on the guy. He’s either a brilliant, genius mastermind of an actor/ comedian, or he’s one of the more bizarrely moronic people on the entire planet. How he got hooked up with Gervais and Merchant are a mystery to me, but suffice it to say, if he is who he seems on the show- it wasn’t on his intellect.

    Pilkington starts the first episode, for instance, arguing against the advancement of technology LIKE the iPod, because "maybe we weren't supposed to muck around with this sort of stuff, yeah?" Then he later claims that the monkeys initially sent up into space at the dawn of the space program were trained and instructed to action while up there from Mission Control- being manipulated by a banana dispenser in the spacecraft. He's just so quiet, and unassuming, and hangdog, and fucking stupid. I was listening to it on my ride home on the A recently, and I seriously nearly lost my shit. Funny, funny stuff.

    So ya, now it's a necklace- the many travails of my new iPods. Also, please, if you know of a good podcast you'd like to share with me and anyone that reads here- throw it on the comments secsh. Thanks...

    The Red Sox today signed RHP Julian Tavarez to a 2-yr deal, the details of which were not disclosed. Tavarez spent the last two seasons in St. Louis.

    In the current pitching market, acquiring a (likely) undervalued guy like Tavarez was a great deal. Lots of Sox fans will remember him as the guy that gave up Mark Bellhorn's HR to win Game One of the '04 Series- he's also had three fantastic seasons 2003-05 as a reliever.

    2003 PIT_____83.2_____3.66_____116
    2004 STL_____64.3_____2.38_____176
    2005 STL_____65.7_____3.43_____125

    This one came as a bit of a surprise, as there were persistent rumors about him going to the Mets and possibly- early in the offseason- the Yankees. He was never signed, and never offered arbitration, so not only did we get a valuable reliever on a nice short 2 yr deal- we aren't losing a pick for him either.

    He's had some really rough patches in his career- he didn't take well to starting in 2000-2002. He seems to have harnessed his stuff a bit in the last few seasons- very few BBs, and is a groundball pitcher.

    Of course, anyone that's seen him pitch will know that he's 100% insane-in-the-membrane, but at least it's not in the Rick Ankiel way. He's passionate. He'll bust a dugout phone if that's what it takes. He's also good buddies with Manny from their Cleveland days, apparently.

    I'm guessing 2-yr, $7.25 million dollar contract. We shall see.

    So, after a six week layoff, LOST returns tonight with a new episode, preceded by a one-hour "recap" show which seeks to present the events of the show in a linear fashion over it's first two seasons. They're trying to pick up new viewers.

    I hadn't planned on doing a running diary, but I will certainly post on it tomorrow (maybe even tonight, depending on how good it is). I avoid spoilers like the plague, but from what I've seen of "previews" for next week, it looks like a Mr. Eko episode, maybe even on both the island and in backstory. We'll see. I'm sure there are people that have read up a bit more on this week's episode that are shaking their heads in amusement, which is fine.

    I've now totally gotten at LEAST two people hooked on LOST, and maybe (probably) three. My Mom watched the first season over a total of about 4 days in my various trips home, Erin watched it in TWO days during a couple holidays from work. Bill (college bro-ham) was someone I gushed about the show to, and he's since latched onto the show in a two-day sitting (and subsequently having his head explode when he learned I have all of season two on my computer). It's possible Bill forgot I mentioned LOST and got into it on his own a bit later- Bill rolls like that sometimes. Now it's a necklace.

    It's just been so long- I mean, I think I might burst into tears of joy when I first see Locke or something. Updates to come...

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