How to enjoy the Super Bowl if you are a girl

Well everyone, we are now on the cusp of Super Bowl Eve Eve, and in just about 70 short hours, we will be watching the biggest game that mankind has to offer.

God put humans on this Earth so that one day we would unite and watch the Super Bowl together. As one. Forget mass. Forget Good Friday. Forget Lent. The Super Bowl is the holiest day of the year.

A lot of us take the Super Bowl for granted. I’m a big sports fan, so I can watch any game of any sport and appreciate it.

However, a lot of the people who may even be at your own Super Bowl party do not care about football in the slightest. But it’s the Super Bowl, so they watch anyway. And now that I think about it, it must be extremely freaking dull to watch a sporting event for five hours when you really don’t have any interest in it at all.

And I’m pretty much just talking to girls here. Yes, I know it’s 2013, and sexism was so five years ago. But let’s face it — I know plenty of girls watch football, but if you took a survey of all the people in the United States who don’t like football, we all know at least 80% of those people would be girls.

So what can girls do to keep themselves entertained during the Super Bowl? Well, there’s the obvious solution of simply just getting drunk. That would solve everything.

Another popular item is for all of the girls in the room is to join together and talk, and not even acknowledge the fact that a game is going on. I’ve seen this plenty of times. In fact, sometimes they even go into another room. What they talk about, god only knows.

But luckily there are other options. In fact, there are other television stations that actually cater to people who don’t like football.

Like Animal Planet.

Puppy Bowl

The ninth annual Puppy Bowl will air on Animal Planet and will run concurrently with the Super Bowl.

I don’t care how masculine any man might think they are, you can’t not enjoy the Puppy Bowl. It’s a bunch of little puppies running around in a box with a toy football. At best, it’s the most adorable thing in the world, and it worst, it’s just a little cute.

So if the Super Bowl is dragging a little bit, and you spot a girl in the room who is looking kind of bored, and maybe has taken to perusing through her phone to kill time, then just flip to the Puppy Bowl for a minute or two. You’ll see her look of indifference immediately change to an expression of sheer joy. In other words, it’s something I never see whenever a girl makes eye contact with me.

But if the Puppy Bowl is not for you, then you could always tune into Spike TV for…

Lingerie Bowl

Sadly, as I type this blog post, I just learned right now that there will be no Lingerie Bowl this year.

Apparently the league actually wants to be taken seriously as a women’s football league, and it did away with the lingerie and moved its schedule from the fall to the spring. That is extremely… disappointing, to say the least.

Oh well, I guess the Puppy Bowl it is.

However, there are other elements during the Super Bowl to keep you occupied. What is the thing people anticipate the most heading into the big game? The commercials!

Corporations pay millions of dollars for airspace during the Super Bowl, and usually go to great lengths to try to make their advertising as appealing as possible. Therefore, during commercial breaks, instead of a 2-minute infomercial about the Snuggie, you’re going to see humorous 45-second clips that feature a lot of gags, explosions and celebrity cameo appearances.

Most of them end up being pretty stupid, but there always a few gems in the bunch that make it worth it to pay to close attention during the commercial breaks.

The most famous advertiser? Budweiser. After their successful Bud-Weis-Er bullfrog ads of yesteryear, they’ve pretty much set the bar for the best commercials. And guess what? You’re in luck, because Budweiser has already released one of its ads.

Now girls, let me warn you — this one is a tear-jerker. I am somebody who never cries, and even I got choked up a little while watching it. If you love sentimental things, and horses, then oh boy, get the Kleenex box ready.

Isn’t that just lovely? Again, the masculine ones won’t admit it, but they’ll be crying inside.

And apparently that baby horse that they show in the beginning of the video is only about a week old.

So there you go. Girls, I really hope you enjoy yourselves on Sunday, and trust me, I know that many of you know sports. A lot of you know it better than many guys.

But when the channel changes momentarily from the Super Bowl to the Puppy Bowl, you know — you know  — that you are silently praying that the channel does not change back.

Don’t lie.

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Dr. Phil vs. Katie Couric vs. Oprah Winfrey: who would you let interview you?

On January 13, Lance Armstrong  sat down with Oprah Winfrey for an extensive 2-hour interview, where he finally — after years of denial — admitted to using performance enhancing drugs.

On January 24, recent Notre Dame graduate Manti Te’o sat down with ABC News anchor Katie Couric, breaking his silence regarding the incredibly weird girlfriend hoax story.

And this week, Ronaiah Tuiasosopo — who allegedly perpetrated the hoax — sat down with America’s favorite psychologist, Dr. Phil, in a desperate attempt to seek psychoanalysis for his bizarre actions.

Hmm, I am sensing a common theme here.

It appears that, amid all of the media that exists these days, the interview is now making a comeback. You know, that old-school style of reporting where you actually sit down and speak directly with the source, rather than basing news stories off of hearsay and conjecture?

The funny thing, though, is that it seems like when there is a hot news item, all of these different people and networks rush to try to get first dibs on the interview. Oprah got Lance. Katie got Manti. Dr. Phil was stuck with the other dude.

But it brings to light an interesting question — if you, for whatever reason, had some type of information that you needed to divulge, who would you choose to speak to about it?

With that, I am going to run down our list of candidates, and point out the pros and cons of each one. Hey, I’ve got nothing better to do with my time.

Dr. Phil

Dr. Phil McGraw interviews Ronaiah Tuiasosopo during taping for the "Dr. Phil Show"

Pros: It’s pretty easy to tell why Dr. Phil is so easy to talk to. He looks like your uncle. Like your bald, awkward-looking, good-humored uncle. Not only that, but his physical appearance makes him look like a priest, a guidance counselor and a therapist — combined. I can’t imagine having a conversation with him and not subconsciously spilling my deepest and darkest secrets somewhere along the way.

What would start as a simple conversation about the weather would somehow end with me realizing that I have fear of commitment and intimacy.

Woah. See? Just thinking about Dr. Phil helps me realize things about myself.

Cons: The cons about speaking with Dr Phil? Well, for one thing, whatever happened to doctor-patient confidentiality? If I’m spilling my guts to a psychologist, it’s because I want a true and honest assessment of my actions and behavior.

Dr. Phil, while certainly a qualified psychologist, has an alternate agenda — to lure viewers. Therefore, how do I know that his analysis is not based on his willingness to help me, but to draw people to watch his show?

Sorry, but real doctors do not air their sessions on television. Therefore, Dr. Phil is just a glorified talk-show host. He’s no better than Jerry Springer or Maury Povich.

Next!

Katie Couric

Katie & Manti

Pros: I’m not going to lie. I don’t watch too much ABC News, however, you rarely hear people talk poorly of Katie Couric. She’s professional. She’s philanthropic. She’s serious.

Plus, she has really nice legs.

Katie Couric may be the best-looking 56-year-old around. So if you’re going to be revealing some type of embarrassing information about yourself — which is a lose-lose situation to begin with — then you might as well do so by telling it somebody who is at least pleasant to look at.

Cons: Katie has worked for three of the major networks in her career. She started out at NBC and became famous for her work on The Today Show. After 15 years, she made the move to CBS to host their nightly news program and to basically become the face of the network. During her five years at CBS, she made a smooth transition from daytime to nighttime TV.

But then once her contract expired in 2011, she moved yet again, this time to ABC. Last June, she signed a $40 million contract to host her own daytime talk show.

Katie Couric is a consummate professional, no doubt. But she also doesn’t seem to be able to stay in one place for a long period of time. In fact, one might go as far as saying that she has her own loyalty issues. She’s flipped between networks, as well as back-and-forth between daytime and nighttime television. Is she really the ideal confidante? I think I might want somebody a little less flaky.

Next!

Oprah Winfrey

Oprah & Lance

Pros: I mean, come on. It’s Oprah. There is nothing that she can’t handle. After all, she was the only one who was brave enough to interview that woman who had her face torn off by a monkey a few years ago. Don’t worry, I won’t post a picture.

She’s one of the richest women in the world, and she’s one of the most altruistic women in the world. So if you’re such a hot commodity that Oprah Winfrey requests to interview you, then it means she really wants to talk to you. And if that’s the case, then how can you not acquiesce?

Talking to Oprah is the closest you can come to talking to the Virgin Mary herself.

Cons: Oprah may be a great person, but what is she really qualified in? Listening? If you really need to get something off your chest, then what benefit will Oprah give to you? She isn’t qualified to offer advice or subscribe medication.

The main reason people go on Oprah? Damage control. Oprah tries her best to make everyone look like a saint. Therefore, you really have to screw up badly to warrant the attention of Oprah Winfrey.

So bearing that in mind, I am going to hope that whatever it is that I did, it was not something that was so bad and so regrettable that it meant I needed to be interrogated by Oprah in order to redeem myself.

Next!

Well, there’s, uhh…

I guess that pretty much concludes the list of candidates.

The lesson that we can take out of this is that maybe we don’t need a celebrity television personality to talk to during times of need. Maybe we can confide in somebody a little more familiar to us, like our friends, or our family, or maybe a psychologist who doesn’t have his own television show, and whose primary motive is actually to help you.

Or if that isn’t an option, then you could always do what Jimmy Stewart did, and confide in a six-foot-tall invisible bunny rabbit.

Harvey the Rabbit

That’s right. I’d prefer an invisible life-sized rabbit to Dr. Phil, Katie Couric and Oprah Winfrey to spill all of my secrets to.

Because nothing screams “fully cured” more than an imaginary farm animal.

It’s time for an overdue admission — I hate the Super Bowl.

The Super Bowl is the biggest sporting event of the year.

It’s also the most overrated sporting event of the year. Yeah, I said it. And that’s coming from a giant sports fan — and somebody who makes it a point to never miss any games of his favorite teams.

The hype and grandeur surrounding the Super Bowl is just too much. As a die-hard sports fan, I anticipate every sporting game. Even if it’s a meaningless game during the middle of the season of one of my favorite teams, regardless of the sport, I love to sit down in front of the television and watch the whole thing. It doesn’t need to be the Super Bowl, or any championship game for that matter, for me to enjoy it.

It also doesn’t help that my teams almost never even make it to the championship games. Which brings me to my list of reasons as to why I, a big sports fan, despise the Super Bowl.

Super Bowl 47

My team is never in it.

I am a lifelong Jets fan, and unfortunately, that lifelong devotion has never included a Super Bowl berth. The last time the New York Jets played in the Super Bowl was 1969, when they defeated the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III.

By the time the Super Bowl comes around, my team is usually long out of it (with the exception of 2010 and 2011), and thus, my interest has waned.

If the Jets had played in a recent Super Bowl, then yes, I would love the game. I would shout from my rooftop the day before the Super Bowl, encouraging everybody to watch the big game and cheer on Gang Green. But that never happens. So it pains me to watch another team win the Super Bowl. If I can’t have it, then nobody should.

The game is too long.

Jesus Christ, when did Super Bowls take five hours to complete?

Unfortunately, I can’t find any records that provide the historical duration of all 46 Super Bowls. However, if I were to locate such information, I guarantee you would see that the number has increased dramatically over the past few decades.

The first Super Bowl was played in 1967 between the Packers and Chiefs, and I bet they finished the game in under three hours. But now? Forget it.

Never mind having the time to go to the bathroom in between commercial breaks, you now have the time to watch entire past Super Bowls during commercial breaks. With the amount of revenue that television stations pull in with advertisements, you bet that they’ll find the time to squeeze in six or seven commercials per television timeout.Beyonce video

And they might as well not even call it a halftime show anymore. At this point it’s a halftime concert. You can dish out hundreds of dollars for a Super Bowl ticket, and get your money’s worth solely because of the halftime performance. I honestly expect to hear Beyonce’s entire discography this Sunday. From recent songs such as “If I were a Boy,” to the more upbeat Destiny’s Child stuff like “Survivor” or “Bills, Bills, Bills,” back when there were like 19 members of the band because they could never find a consistent number.

Also, I think Beyonce’s outfit in the music video for “Survivor” may have been the source of one of my earliest erections in life. Hey, I was 13.

Too much buildup.

This may not be a problem for the casual sports fan, who typically avoids sports radio, television and websites, but for the bigger fans who spend much of their time on such mediums — it’s torture. Again, I’d have no problem with it if it were my team, but it never is — so I don’t need to hear 22 different reports on the same exact story lines over and over again.

I’m already sick of the Super Bowl. I’m tired of hearing about the Harbaugh brothers. I don’t want to hear Ray Lewis’s name anymore.

Although I guess two weeks isn’t too long when you consider that the Notre Dame Fighting Irish waited 45 days between their last regular season game on Nov. 24 and the BCS National Championship game on Jan. 7. But that’s just a whole new level of ridiculousness that I’m not going to get into right now. Although, it did allot more time for Manti Te’o to go on some imaginary dates.

No guarantee of excitement

Every now and then you’ll get an epic thriller of a Super Bowl — like Super Bowl 34 between the Titans and Rams, or Super Bowl 38 between the Panthers and Patriots, or Super Bowl 42 between the Giants and the Patriots, are a few that come to mind. However, those games only come around every few years. And for a game that only occurs once a year, that’s not enough.

There’s nothing worse than preparing for the big game, only to watch a dud. That could very well happen during any given Super Bowl.

Too much pressure

Arguably the most annoying part of the Super Bowl experience is… planning what to do for the Super Bowl. It’s a game that — sports fan or not — one becomes obligated to revolve plans around. Last year’s Super Bowl scored a national Nielsen rating of 47.0. That means that half of the people in the U.S. who own a television watched the game.

It’s an event. You can’t watch the game by yourself in your living room — you have to gather with a group of people. And that’s certainly not a problem. Any excuse to see your friends is a good excuse. But the problem is that there’s just too much pressure to create extravagant plans for the game, and thus, when the game draws nearer, and you still lack plans — everybody starts getting nervous.

It should never come to that.

You’re forced to use Roman numerals

I understand that the history and the tradition of the Super Bowl is what makes the game so resplendent. But it’s 2013, we have perfectly good sets of numbers, so why not use them? Can we please just call it Super Bowl 47, and not Super Bowl XLVII? It should never take me more than a second to read a number.

And if I want to research past Super Bowls, I actually have to do math. This is not okay.

When I lay eyes on a Roman numeral, my first thought isn’t, “Oh, that’s a number.” Instead, my first thought is fear and abandonment.

Conclusion

All of the above reasons are why I am not a big fan of the Super Bowl. Planning for the game, and then watching it, feels like a chore to me rather than an enjoyment. And that should never be the case for a sports fan.

And I didn’t even mention the disgusting amounts of food I am going to stuff my face with on the big day. Because another wonderful tradition is the tendency to overload on pizza, beer and wings. When’s the last time you saw somebody put out a spread of hummus and broccoli dip on Super Bowl Sunday?

Like every other American, I hate Mondays. There’s no worse feeling than waking up early on a Monday and knowing that you have to do this four more days in a row.

However, the Monday immediately following Super Bowl Sunday? That one I don’t mind.

But like Beyonce once sang, I’ll survive.

Is Kendrick Lamar supposed to make me care about rap?

I was watching Saturday Night Live this weekend — of course not actually live, I have a life people — when I saw that Adam Levine was the host. I thought, “Oh cool, so he’s going to host and sing?”

Typically when a musician hosts SNL, they also provide the musical entertainment. It’s a lot of work for one person, but I’ve seen others do it. However, not only was Adam Levine not singing, but the musical guest was somebody that does not even belong to the same genre.

Kendrick LamarThe guest was a rapper who goes by the name of Kendrick Lamar. I’ve heard of him, solely by name, and apparently he is blowing up right now. It seems like he’s the biggest thing in rap. Because, firstly, for a rapper to land a gig on Saturday Night Live, you have to be a pretty big name.

I don’t listen to rap. You won’t find any on my iTunes and I couldn’t even begin to tell you what any hip hop stations are on the radio. It’s just not my thing. At all. I couldn’t care less about “ill beats” or “mad flows.”

I just don’t associate rap with music. Do I think rap is form of art? Of course. Like def poetry or just… regular poetry, it requires talent and skill to be able to recite words in an eloquent way, and to be able to do it alongside a beat obviously takes some ability. However, it’s still not music. Music is formed by instruments, like guitars, or a piano, or that weird wooden fish thing that your elementary school music teacher used to have in her classroom.

But I listened to Kendrick Lamar perform anyway. And I’ll admit that I actually made it to about one-minute in before I fast forwarded. That means a lot, because typically when I listen to rap I have to turn it off after five seconds. I think those 45 seconds of listening to Kendrick Lamar surpasses the amount of time I’ve spent in my entire life listening to Lil’ Wayne. And I’ve actually heard Lil’ Wayne about one hundred times — I just make sure I turn off the volume or change the station within the same second it turns on.

I’ll never be adverse to young talent coming up and making a name for themselves. Kendrick Lamar is just 25 years old, and he’s reppin’ us 1987ers pretty well. In addition, he can only be better than the likes of Kanye West, Drake and the aforementioned Lil’ Wayne, right? Right??

Plus, he took part in a pretty awesome Digital Short that marked the temporary return of Andy Samberg, who left SNL last year because he thought he was ready to embark on a successful film career, but when he looks back on that decision a decade from now he will probably realize that he should have waited at least another year or two. Here is the video, titled You Only Live Once, which we all know what that shortens to.

So to answer the original question posed in the title of this blog post — No. I do not think Kendrick Lamar is going to make me suddenly begin to have the slightest interest in rap. He is not the next Eminem, who aside from Tupac Shakur and possibly Run DMC, may be the only rappers in the history of the world who are universally liked.

However, I figured I should take a moment and acknowledge the newfound popularity of Mr. Lamar since he seems to be making waves in the industry these days. And I should also acknowledge that Kendrick Lamar’s birth name is actually Kendrick Lamar Duckworth.

One can understand why he chose to drop his surname. I don’t think “Duckworth” would have branded him with a ton of street cred.

So what else happened this weekend? Oh, there’s apparently a national controversy regarding whether Jennifer Lawrence’s dress ripped while she accepted her Screen Actors Guild Award yesterday during yesterday’s awards show.

I had absolutely no desire to discuss this at length, but if you Google the phrase “Jennifer Lawrence dress,” you’ll be saddened to see that there are pages worth of articles on the topic. Between this and the Meryl Streep joke during the Golden Globes, J-Law has had a very successful yet controversial awards season. I’d still date her though.

Also, many of you may have seen this new ad by Microsoft, as they are trying to get back in the technological game with brand new phones and tablets. What was their marketing plan? It was to manipulate and tug at the nostalgic heartstrings of all those who were born in the mid-to-late 1980s. And by god did they do it well.

It really brings a tear to your eye. Hungry mother f’n Hippos!

Nokia LumiaIt was a brilliant strategy by Microsoft, who is heavily associated with pioneering the technological revolution in the 1990s. They’ve since been outdone by Apple and Google, but they appear to be making a comeback.

And as somebody who recently purchased a Windows phone in the form of a Nokia Lumia 920, I can vouch that they are officially back in the game. I’ve owned it for a few weeks now and I can honestly say that I love it. it has a very aesthetic and simplified interface that really appeals to me, a lengthy battery life and it fits very comfortably inside my pocket.

It also makes phone calls, and other stuff.

Of course the irony is that Microsoft is playing off their 90s appeal, and yet during the 90s, none of us carried cell phones. Also in the 90s, I didn’t know what a blog was yet. Instead, I actually spent my recreational time going outside and doing productive things.

But there’s still hope for us Generation-Y folk. If a young, nerdy black kid named Kendrick Duckworth, who spent his childhood in the 90s by probably wearing glasses and overalls and looking like Steve Urkel, can grow up to become Kendrick Lamar and perform on Saturday Night Live, then who knows what the rest of us can accomplish.

The anatomy of willing yourself to go to the gym.

The gym

The gym. Also known as — the enemy.

Nobody wants to go there. Nobody. You never hear somebody shout with glee that their about to go the gym. No one yells “I’m going to the gym!” with the same tone of voice as they might yell “I just won 500 bucks on a scratch-off!”

But we have to go. Unless you’re one of those people who is just innately thin regardless of what they eat — and if you are, I hate you —  then we all have to make our frequent trips to the gym to maintain our personal health and figure.

But there’s a giant misconception about the gym. And that is this: The people who hate the gym the most — are the ones who go there the most.

Fat people don’t hate the gym. They don’t decide to not to go the gym because they hate it, they decide not to go because they’re indifferent towards it. They don’t even think about it. To actually hate something, you have to be familiar with it. That’s why I don’t hate women.

It’s the people who step into their gym to work out anywhere between 3 and 5 days a week who hate the living shit out of it. But we suck it up and we make the trip regardless because we know that the good outweighs the bad.

The hardest part about going to the gym is actually finding the will to go. Once you’re there, it’s a piece of cake. Actually, scratch that —  it’s the piece of cake that you’re trying to burn off!

Booing

I apologize. I could not resist.

But again, even the regular gym rats face an internal debate about their gym attendance. They go more often than not, but it’s still a struggle. Most regular gym-goers have their own personal schedule. For me, I try to actually work out — as in actually lifting weights — on Wednesdays and Fridays. On other days, I usually do cardio, and if it’s nice enough outside, I can avoid the gym.

So let me provide you with my mindset about how my brain thinks throughout the course of a Wednesday, which is my first weightlifting day of the week, and the day when I get my most complete workout.

First thing in the morning: Rise and shine, it’s a gym day! Make it through work today, and then hit the gym and you’ll be feeling awesome at the end of the day! Yeah baby! Carpe diem!

Mid-morning: Alright, this day is flying by already! Almost finished with my coffee and still can’t wait to go the gym.

Mid-afternoon: Okay, coffee wearing off a little. But, you know, that will all change when I go to the gym later to cancel this out.

Late afternoon: Oh man. I just ate way too much. I’m in a food coma. Ugh, I definitely need to go to the gym now.

Almost 5 p.m.: Man, it’s 5 o’clock already? Do I even have time to go to the gym? I don’t know. I’m pretty tired.

After arriving home: I don’t feel like moving. God damn it. Can I just watch a movie instead? *Walks over to the mirror and looks at self* Oh, you fat piece of shit. Look at you. You’re disgusting. Eh, I better go the gym, what the hell.

15 minutes into the gym: Alright, almost done with my first exercise. Just do a few more and get out of here. You can do this.

skinny weightliffter20 minutes later: Hmm, I’m actually feeling pretty good! I’m really glad I came, I’m having such a good workout. *Looks in mirror at gym* Damn, I look freaking ripped.

15 minutes later: Should I use that one extra machine? Yeah, what the hell, I’m going to use that extra machine. LET’S DO IT. *Notices extremely fit girl in tight yoga pants walk by, pretends to act like he’s worthy of her and that being at the gym is no big deal.*

5 minutes later: Alright, time for cardio, and them I’m out of here. I owned the gym today, bitch.

Finishing up cardio: I can’t believe I ever doubted coming to the gym today. You see this river of sweat all over my shirt? I earned that.

Arrives home: *Looks in mirror* Yeah, baby. I am really, really skinny. Like, I am in very good shape. Time to eat.

20 minutes later: *Looks in mirror after eating massive meal and stares at gut* Well, fuck me.

Again, the battle lies in mustering the energy and the willpower to actually go the gym. Once you actually get there, you’re not going to only stay for a few minutes. You’re going to get your money’s worth. In fact, my best workouts usually come on days when I preemptively tell myself beforehand that I am only going to do a quick workout.

The difference between in-shape and out-of-shape people is simple — it’s the in-shape people who fight those pre-gym demons and convince themselves that they should go anyway. Just don’t think, grab your keys, drive to the gym, and let your muscles do the rest.

I think setting a schedule definitely helps. Once you can nail down some type of habitual routine, it will become muscle memory.

People think that if they sign up for the gym, and actually pay money, then it will force them to go. But that’s not true. I’ve seen people pay $30 a month for a gym they don’t even set foot in. It takes a lot more guts and determination than that. Your biggest enemy isn’t the money, or the traveling, or the weights — it’s you.

Only you can beat you.

And I’m not talking about masturbation.

Lipgate is the new controversy

Inauguration week continues, and one can’t help but enjoy seeing all the political pundits discuss President Obama’s inspiring speech that he delivered to the millions and millions of people watching across the United States on Monday.

I mean, that’s all that matters, right? Presidential Inaugurations only come around once every four years, so the general public, as well as the media, waits on bated breath to hear what the president has to say. And that’s the way it should be.

Oh wait. Hold on a minute. You’re telling me that’s not what they’re talking about? They’re talking about… what? Did you just tell me that the only thing people got out of the Inauguration was Michelle Obama’s attire and whether Beyonce was lip syncing? Are you kidding me?

What kind of nation have we become when an R&B singer overshadows the president at his own inaugaration?

Alright, so the last thing I want to do right now is begin discussing fashion. So let’s focus on the other thing.

The country, the news, the Twitterverse — everyone, basically — has been abuzz with one single earth-shattering question — did Beyonce Knowles lip-sync the Star Spangled Banner during the Presidential Inauguration?

Why don’t you make your own judgment?

It’s pretty amazing. In my quick survey of news outlets, you have some people saying that she did lip sync. On the opposite end, you have people saying that she performed live vocals.

And then, you have some people who said that there was a combination of both — that she did sing, but pre-recorded vocals were also filtering in through the speakers.

Here’s my input to this national controversy: who gives a shit?

Beyonce Knowles has been performing live she was about 17-years-old as a member of the girl-group Destiny’s Child. Since then, she’s probably given hundreds of live performances across the world, in all different kinds of venues. In fact, in two weeks she will be highlighting the Superbowl halftime show. And typically, those are quaint, elegant performances where nothing memorable ever happens. 

Everybody knows that Beyonce can sing. She’s won Grammys. And even though she is freaking gorgeous, she has never been labeled as somebody who became famous because of their looks. The girl’s got pipes.

However, despite all of her experience, I highly doubt that Beyonce has ever performed on such a grandiose stage before than she did during the Presidential Inauguration. The entire nation was watching. She was singing our national anthem during one of the most presidential events that our country possesses. To say that it was a pressure-packed scenario is an understatement.

So, that all being said, can you even blame Beyonce if she wanted a back-up plan to avoid her screwing up? After all, there’s nothing more embarrassing than botching the National Anthem. Many have done it. Christina Aguilera didn’t hear the end of it when she omitted a line from the song during Super Bowl XLV two years ago, and that was during a sporting event (albeit a big sporting event.)

Therefore, if Beyonce screwed it up during the Presidential Inauguration, that is something that would have left a black mark on the rest of her career. Shit, I think anybody would have lip-synced.

And I’m saying this without even actually knowing definitively whether she lip-synced or not. Maybe she did sing live. Who knows. But I do know that if she did lip-sync, then I understand it, and thus have no problem with it.

Plus, Obama liked it.

Obama Beyonce

And that’s all that matters. Barack approved. Although Michelle may have disapproved while she sat watching that kiss in her fancy new red Jason Wu red gown.

Yep, I went there.

So, continuing this discussion of African-American celebrities — did anyone catch the Australian Open last night? That’s tennis, for anybody who is wondering.

Serena Williams squared off in her quarterfinal match against a fellow American female and 19-year-old Sloane Stephens. Stephens burst onto the scene last year, and because she is black, she has drawn unfair (and borderline racist) comparisons to a young Serena.

But anyway, Stephens got to face her for the first time last night, and she went ahead and won the match in a colossal upset. Sloane Stephens

And with that, Sloane Stephens became an overnight sensation, and we now have a brand new face of American female tennis. Also, as expected, her Twitter followers more than doubled — from 20,000 to 50,000.

It wasn’t a Katherine Webb-like increase (who went from 5,000 to 200,000 in hours), as Stephens already had a respectable following. She was the 29-ranked female tennis player coming into the match, after all. But the match represented the very first time that 31-year-old Serena Williams, in her 16-year professional career, that she had ever lost to a younger American player.

Being the true teenager that she is, Sloane Stephens, when asked during her post-match interview how many text messages she had, responded by saying she had exactly 145 messages. She knew the actual number. She also uttered aloud that she “hopes to have more Twitter followers.”

Can you imagine past athletes saying that?

Do you think Lou Gehrig’s famous speech would have been as poignant if he said something like, “Today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the Earth, and I also hope more people follow me on Twitter…”

“…Hashtag, they’ll name a disease after me someday.”

Too soon?

In all seriousness though, it’s nice to have some quality, young American talent in any sport, let alone tennis — a game that has been craving a prominent native fan-favorite since the days of Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras. So color me a fan.

And by “color,” I do not mean to insinuate any racial undertones.

All I’m trying to say is that she’s a dark horse in the remainder of this tournament. Damn it.

What I mean is that for a sport that has been long deprived of a superstar American athlete, Sloane Stephens may be the black swan that we’ve been waiting for. Shit.

Fine, I’m racist.

If you’re going to have the audacity to even attempt to assassinate somebody, then at least get it right

Okay, so I know how condemning the title of this blog post looks for me considering that yesterday was the presidential inauguration. The CIA, FBI and the Secret Service probably still have their computer algorithms set to catch anybody who even types the word “assassinate.”

However, this post is not about anything too bad, so I know that the remainder of today’s blog will exonerate me. However, the government may not get further than the first paragraph, so if you don’t hear from me tomorrow, can somebody please retrieve me from Guantanamo Bay? I’ve seen Zero Dark Thirty, and I know what goes on there.

Anyway, the incident I am referring to occurred on Saturday in Bulgaria. The target was a Turkish politician named Ahmed Dogan, who was giving a speech on live television, and who apparently is a controversial figure in the country.

While he delivered his speech, a leather jacketed crusader hopped on stage and pointed a gun at Dogan at point-blank range, and somehow, the gun malfunctioned and failed to shoot. The would-be assassin was wrestled to the ground and savagely beaten by a bunch of people who may or may not have been security.

Don’t believe me? Here is the footage!

Pretty outrageous stuff.

Actually, on second thought — I think calling him an “assassin” is an insult to assassins everywhere. Let’s just call him “the idiot.”

So the idiot was later identified as 25-year-old Oktay Enimehmedov, who besides having an unpronounceable name, has a criminal history.

It was also later revealed that Enimehmedov — and yes, I had to copy and paste that because there’s no way in hell I am typing that out again — was actually using a gas pistol. According to experts, such a gun is not capable of killing people, however, it can cause life-threatening injuries when fired at an extremely close range. Which this was.

Since this occurred — and subsequently went viral on YouTube — there have actually been conflicting points as to whether the idiot actually meant to kill Dogan. In fact, apparently the gun was filled with pepper spray. So while the idiot may not have intended to kill the Bulgarian politician, he clearly meant to cause serious harm, or at the very least — send a message.

Oh, he sent a message, alright. He sent a message that he is really, really dumb.

It’s one thing to try to kill someone. It’s another thing to commit murder in cold blood. But it’s a whole new level of recklessness to even pretend to assassinate somebody. To storm onto a stage and cause a scene, and go as far as pointing a gun in the face of a powerful, important individual takes a lot of stupidity.

Even O.J. Simpson thinks this guy is dumb.

First of all, since the idiot’s faux assassination attempt didn’t even work, it gave the immediate impression that he was aiming to kill, and thus the idiot is extremely fortunate that he wasn’t shot dead right on the spot. If this happened in America, then the guy would’ve been deader faster than Manti Teo’s fake girlfriend.

Which begs the next question — Were the hell were the police officers? Or as they call them in Bulgarian — politsaĭ.

If this Dogan guy was important enough to deliver a speech on live television, shouldn’t have there been some type of security present? Even if it’s not a bodyguard, or a police presence, then maybe like… a bouncer or something? The bar I got drunk at last Saturday night had more protection than this entire political forum.

Instead you have a bunch of guys in suits curb stomping him on live television.

And secondly, how did the idiot botch this so badly? If you are going to make the god-awful decision of going through with this plan, then shouldn’t you, you know, like practice it or something? I mean, he could have flicked a rubber band at the guy with his fingers and managed to cause more pain.

The guy’s stupidity is unquestionable considering he has already publicly expressed regret that his plan didn’t work.

So basically, this guy’s actions has caused him to receive every single consequence an assassin would have to deal with, without actually assassinating anybody. He got beaten, he’ll be persecuted and he’ll even be labeled as “an assassin.” He even was given an out considering the gun misfired — he could have plead insanity and said he knew the gun wouldn’t shoot. Instead, he goes ahead and confesses.

The one silver lining that a real assassin has — albeit a delusional silver lining — is the joy of knowing that their attempt was successful, and that they sent a resounding political message.

And he even went ahead and screwed that up.

Katniss EverdeenCan you imagine if this guy ever took part in the Hunger Games? He’d be dead in two minutes. Katniss Everdeen would take a nap, fry a squirrel, and then kill him with her bow and arrow before he even had the time to figure out how to successfully pull a trigger.

But you know, it’s unfortunate that all assassins couldn’t be this dumb. If that were the case, then great men like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., or John Lennon, or Abraham Lincoln might still be alive today.

It’s a shame.

Damn it, now I’m craving fried squirrel.