Sunday, May 5, 2013

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: May 6th

Doncha think Country Music is just regular music with an accent, a banjo, and some fiddles thrown in?   I thought about it:  what would happen if you just took those parts out of the mix.  It would sound more like a soft-rock song.   Country used to be Country, but my take on it is that Country is now "Glossy Country"... not bad, in fact pretty good, but more commercial.  I'm a clown with Country music, but as an outsider, that's been my impression since the mid-90's.

Cookies...   I went to a place called New York Bagel & Deli in Santa Monica, or NYBD for short.  This was on Saturday.   What I saw and ate was the best bagel West of Manhattan.  I'm not joking -- the bagels had that crispy outside and soft luscious inside.   I went with the everything with cream cheese.   Very very good!   The coffee was also very good, but the showstopper -- the chocolate chip cookie.   Would you believe their large, choco filled cookie was the star of the day?   I could not *believe* how good the cookie was!  It was **amazing!**

Who could have guessed that a place so big on bagels would be so great with cookies?   I want to eat that cookie again, hopefully sometime soon.

Last year, I ate a kebab before a big LA Kings weekend playoff game and the Kings won the game.  Then I tried it the next weekend ... soon I was eating Kebabs before every Kings game and the Kings eventually went to the cup.

I tried it one last time for the 2013 Season Opener and the Kings got *hammered* by the Blackhawks by like four goals.   That ended the Kebab tradition.  So this year, I thought of trying some different things, but then decided to just eat whatever I wanted.

I went to a place near my apartment called "Cafe 50's."  The beauty of this place is that they serve a really large assortment of foods.  Quite a wide variety of dishes and they do most of them pretty well.   Yesterday they had a special on Cinco de Mayo themed food:  mostly shrimp and lobster related dishes.   In fact, they had a special Lobster and Crab with Beans burrito, served with rice and frijoles.  I was intrigued.  I also had a free entree (up to $8) coupon to comemorate my birthday this month.   So I went, and I worried... I worried that the free entree coupon won't apply to "special event" items.

Surely enough, the lady there said the coupon won't work with the Lobster/Crab Burrito.  Drat!!!   Instead, I selected the Chicken Fried Steak.   So I went from Kebabs to a breakfast entree not even in the same neighborhood as chicken skewers.   But!  The Chicken Fried Steak was *very* good.  So I thanked the crew, paid my discounted meal and went my merry way back home to watch the Kings.

The Kings won!  But boy were they lucky to win that one.  Quick has single handedly saved this series to date.   The Kings would have lost every game by 4 goals if not for Quick.  It amazes me how badly outplayed the Kings were by the Blues.  The Kings honestly got no traction due to the Blues incredible speed in their own zone.  They kept a lot of guys back, but just as importantly, David Backes has risen to unforseen new levels.  This dude is GREAT!  He has been all over the ice keeping the puck and hosing all the Kings' passing lanes.   The Blues have played such amazing, disciplined, albeit unentertaining hockey.   The games are not up and down at all -- more like side to side, but it's been tough, physical, and intense.

It's just been tough for the Kings.   One sad footnote to present to Kings fans:  The Kings have lost a game four in the last THREE Quarterfinal series, even last year's quarterfinal that they ultimately won.   Three first round Game Four losses in a row, and the way the Kings were badly outworked by the Blues, from the faceoffs, to the penalty kill during LA power plays, and own-zone defense, along with Elliott's fantastic saves, just about everything the Blues have done in these games out classed the Kings.  I could be upset, and at times I was, but moreover, I'm impressed with St. Louis for turning it around and playing a monster series.

I had to think St Louis would bring a lot more to the table.  Those guys were burnt pretty badly after that semifinal sweep a year ago.   What I did not expect was for the Kings to be *that* thoroughly frustrated on offense.   It's been a very dramatic series indeed, but I'd bet you that the Blues win Game 4 and then finish it off on Wednesday.  --but that's why they play the games!

I mean a game 4 for the Kings is as good as Kryptonite in the first round.  I'm worried tremendously.

You know what?  I'm not worried about the Dodgers... not even a little.   They've played miserable baseball, but here's the thing:  What did we expect?   Ryu is raw, Kershaw is doing his thing, and nobody else in that rotation is more than a fill in.  Injuries have hit LA very hard.   Sometimes the luck just doesn't go your way during the season.   The Dodgers might have a run in them later on, my friends.

Boy, can you believe the Clipper are out of the playoffs?!  You mean all those dunks didn't amount to more than two points each?  My goodness... Lob City -- under new management.   Vinny Del Negro is done.   That's pretty atrocious:  you go up two games to none in the series against Memphis only to lose FOUR STRAIGHT!  One of those was at home with an abysmal effort.  Total lethargy on the part of LAC. 

Brutal, that was just brutal.   they got all sorts of breaks *around* them too such as OKC losing Russell Westbrook for the playoffs.   The door was wide open for the Clips to make it to the Finals and they blew it!

That's a tough break for Clippers fans.   That could have put a huge dent into the NBA had the Clippers advanced a few rounds.

Is it possible to "steal a game" at home?  The Grizzles completely manhandled the Thunder at OKC for 3 quarters... heck, they manhandled them for 3.9999 quarters, only to brain fart the end, miss free throws, turn it over, and basically give the game to Kevin Durant on a tee.  Well, Durant smashed it off the tee, and drained the game winner with scant seconds remaining.   It seemed to me like the Grizzlies were the better team against the Thunder, such as they were.

I didn't see the game, but what the heck happened to the Knicks?  How'd the Cornstalk looking Pacers take down NYK at the Garden like that?  With that meager offense?

Isn't *every* shot J.R. Smith takes "a bad shot?"

Going back to Friday, I had a funny moment at the pool.  On Fridays we do sprints, so on that day I usually try a suit that's tighter than usual.  So I'm heading to the pool, good ole lane 8, and one of my lady colleagues there was about to get warmed up for swim herself.  She sees me there, then I say hello and exchange plesantries.  As I do that, I struggle to get my goggles on, you know how it is, goggles can be pesky to get on right so they're sturdy and comfortable.  I went and said "hope it all stays on!"

Then she just starts HOWLING!  Suddenly I realized the connection, she was thinking about *all* my clothes coming off!  Hahahahahaahahahahahah I got a kick out of that too.  She was like "I know you meant your goggles but I was dying!"   Totally a highlight of the morning.

I'm bouncing all over the time-line today, but going back to Saturday, I made a commitment to clean out as much of my junk as possible.  I came to realize, I really don't have that much stuff in my apartment.  I thought it was a lot more than it was.  All the papers that were lying around for years I cleaned out.   Most of the electronic equipment I wanted to get rid of, I got to goodwill.  I also chucked 1/4 of my clothes which I didn't need any more.  My cleanup efforts were off to a good start!

I made a huge, and I mean HUGE mistake selling my Harman Kardon Vintage 430 stereo receiver.  Mannnnnn, that was a mistake.  One reason why it's a mistake is I took for granted how POWERFUL it was.  I barely turn the volume up to 25% and it can fill a decent sized room like a symphony.   I moved my newer, 2005 vintage Marantz Home Theater Receiver over to the bedroom and the damn thing has to be turned up a good deal for any kind of volume.  I'm very disappointed.  If anything, I sold the wrong receiver.

Well, I'm stuck.   I'm tempted to sell the Marantz *too* so I can get some real meat.  Maybe a return to the NAD integrated amplifier that I had in the very beginning when I began my Hi-Fi journey in 2002.  The hardest part of getting those stereos you love:  FINDING them!   Even on ebay, the models you want aren't easily in stock.  I really should have thought this through when I tried to make the choice on which one to keep.

I'll figure it out, though.  I always do.  I feel like I'm done with "home theater" by the way.  Up next, I'd like to sell my extra speakers.

Wow, what a huge fight in the Montreal/Ottowa game last night in the NHL.   Coach is going to have a *huge* rant today about it.  He hates fights in sports, especially hockey.  A rant is coming, I can feel it!

That's all from here!  Happy Monday.

No comments: