Friday, February 29, 2008

Beware of Panera!

So I had the pleasure of being introduced to Panera sometime in the last 6 months, and I was immediately hooked. They have a wide variety of options of soups, salads, and sandwiches, among other things. It was made pretty much a weekly visit in our lunch rotation. Well thanks to Gail and her subscription to the Nutrition Action Healthletter, the truth is now revealed: nutritional information for their food. It's been on the Panera website, but I never thought to look into it because I assumed the food was quasi-healthy. Well for all of you out there who are looking for a healthy lunchtime meal, you better do some research first. The calories, fat content, and sodium of a lot of they're options are pretty surprising. Here are some of the bad ones:
  • Broccoli Cheddar Soup (8 oz.) : 230 calories, 16 grams of fat, and 1000 mg of sodium

  • Italian Combo (17 oz) : 1060 calories, 49 grams of fat, 170 mg of cholesterol, 3000 mg of sodium

  • Tuna Salad on Whole Grain (14 oz.) : 840 calories, 44 grams of fat, 45 mg of cholesterol, 1590 mg of sodium (wtf?)

Granted those are the extremes, but most of their options are pretty bad. I resorted to the grilled salmon salad today after referencing the nutritional guide. Here are some comparisons to make:

  • McDonald's Big Mac (7.5 oz) : 540 calories, 29 grams of fat, 75 mg of cholesterol, 1040 mg of sodium

  • Wendy's Triple Burger (with everything including cheese) : 980 calories, 60 grams of fat, 245 mg of cholesterol, 2010 mg of sodium

  • BK Triple Whopper w/ cheese : 1230 calories, 82 grams of fat, 275 mg of cholesterol, 1590 mg of sodium

As you can see, the extreme selections from fast food joints don't look nearly as bad as they should in comparison to the Panera selections. Even the Mediterranean Veggie sandwich from Panera has more calories than a Big Mac. If you look at the ounces, yes, Panera has larger sandwiches, but I'd say a Big Mac fills me up just as much as any of the Panera sandwiches.

So don't resort to your local fast food restaurant instead of Panera, but I'm just saying to not get duped by the Panera atmosphere - it may as well have a playland inside.

Philly Sports News

Free agency is the hot topic in the NFL right now, as teams consider who to cut and who to look at. The Eagles made a pretty bold move yesterday, and I think it was the right thing to do. They cut Jevon Kearse a.k.a. The Freak. When he came to Philly 4 years ago, it was exciting. He was a huge addition and everyone expected big things from him. Unfortunately, four years later, he doesn't have a whole lot to show for it, and it's a shame because he's such a likable guy. The Eagles need to make some big moves to have a successful season next year though, and I think this was one step in the right direction.

As far as free agents go, one of the (only?) big ones is CB Asante Samuel, who is visiting the Eagles today. He played for the Pats for the last 5 seasons, and he's a major contributer to my bitter animosity toward the Pats (in other words, he's an asshole). I think he would contribute to our defense, but I'm just not so sure I could get past his persona in an Eagles jersey. The Eagles need to be looking at receivers.

Moving to another sport that everyone in the world except us call football, it looks like Philly will finally get their own MLS team. Speculations are that this could do big things for the weak image that the MLS has right now despite their "big move" ("big paycheck offer") in getting Beckham to come to LA. It'll be a couple years before the team starts, pending the building of the stadium, but I know I'll definitely be interested in going to some games.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Advertising in Fast-Forward

I just read an interesting article on WSJ about a study done to see how effective, if at all, television commercials are when people are fast-forwarding through them. I've always wondered how advertisers would adapt to DVR technology. It seemed that a lot of them turned online, where people play back TV episodes but because it's streaming, they are forced to watch the commercials. An even better advantage is the fact that there are not nearly as many online advertisements as there are TV advertisements, meaning companies can broadcast multiple commercials during a single episode online.

So DVR allows people to record their favorite TV programs, and then play them back, fast forwarding through the commercials. Obviously, if everyone was doing this, you would think advertisers would start sweating. Well...maybe not it seems. The study, done by NBC Universal, showed that people still remember atleast some elements of the ads they see, even if fast-forwarding through them very quickly. Obviously they can not retain the commercials as well as someone watching them live, but there's the kicker that advertisers are grasping.

There are some things that almost everyone watches live if they're going to watch it at all, such as sporting events (case in point: the Superbowl, the biggest day for television advertising). That being known, the study showed that, as would logically be the case, if viewers had seen the commercial live before, they would remember it better when seeing it in fast-forward. Therefore, many advertisers will probably seek out sporting events, award shows, news programs, and other shows that are often watched live in order to get their viewers to watch their advertisement live. Then, maybe they'll remember it when they fast-forward through it on another program. Other characteristics that proved better to the DVR-commercial viewer are familiar characters and a constant showing of the brand's logo. Ultimately, when you think about it, when viewers are fast-forwarding through these commercials, they probably will be giving the TV screen their complete attention so that they don't fast-forward too far.

It seems that some companies have adapted to this. Next time you see a Visa commercial, pay attention to the end. They flash to a white screen with just their logo and tagline, and hold it there while audibly advertising their logo and tagline too. So it works when seen live, and if fast-forwarded, chances are you will see the logo because we tend to focus our attention to the middle of the screen.

The future of TV advertising: solid colored screens with the logos in the middle, held for 15 or 30 seconds. Ok, probably not, but it's interesting to see that some advertisers are adapting to this technology. I'm sure many advertisers will display their website URL on their ads prominently in the same fashion that Visa is doing.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Oscar Winners 2008

Well, about a month ago, once the nominations were announced, I made my predictions as to who would win an Oscar. Had I seen There Will Be Blood, I would have made a better personal choice, but I was following the buzz of that movie (I still haven't seen it, but I think it was finally released in this area), and thought it would win best picture. But I'm happy to see that No Country For Old Men won. I was throwing out Cate Blanchett winning best supporting actress for her role as Bob Dylan but that's just because she seems to play everything...I like how John Stewart pointed out that she played the queen, Bob Dylan, and even the pitbull in No Country For Old Men. And I didn't really think Transformers would win an Oscar...I'm surprised it was even nominated.

Other than that, I was spot on. I should have laid down some money on it.

Here's a video from the pre-show. I'm not denying that Garey Busey is creepy and can inject fear into women, but did what he do here really warrant that kind of reaction from Jennifer Garner and Ryan Seacrest? All I have to say is...if I was walking down the street, and I saw Ryan Seacrest and Garey Busey behind him, I'd push Seacrest out of the way to get to Busey.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Spelling Things Out

I love the pictoral diagrams that show the right and wrong way to do things. You know...the solid black stick figure people...and when they're in the wrong position, there's a big red X through the box.

This one trumps them all though...

If I ever see someone bring a fishing rod into a bathroom...I'm gonna lose it.

Friday, February 22, 2008


I used to check CNN online for news, and occasionally I'll watch it on TV, but I'm going to try to make a conscious effort NOT to anymore. Why? A CNN television producer was fired for blogging.

He had started a blog in 2006 while he was on medical leave and it became popular so he continued it. And two years later he gets fired? When this came up, articles stated that a similar situation had happened to a CNN employee, who was fired for having a password-protected online journal which apparently had a lot of positive working experience stories. I know that you can't set rules according to whether you write about a positive or negative work experience, but what happened to free speech? If you're going to ban blogging, make it clear. Apparently the CNN handbook stated that "any writing produced for a 'non-CNN outlet' is required to be checked with the network's standards and practices department." As this producer said, that's pretty vague. And what happened to warnings? The rule doesn't say that it has a zero-tolerance policy. If you're going to fire someone without warning over something, shouldn't they be informed of it when they start working there?

Best part of the story is how the guy explained how it went down: "Ed, seeming to channel Bill Lumburgh from Office Space, informed me of that which I was already very well aware..."

The guy made a reference to Lumburgh...he's innocent in my book.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


I've read a lot lately about movies (that are coming out soon or starting production soon) that look great. Starting with the earliest release date, which will be next Friday, the 29th, a sequel to one of the best movies I have ever seen is coming out. City of God was a movie about two boys growing up in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil who take on different paths in life (one a photographer, one a drug dealer). It's subtitled, extremely violent, but also very powerful...I highly recommend watching it. It's sequel, City of Men, will be released next Friday, and I'm guessing (as most sequels go) it will not be as good as the first one, but I'm sure it will be worth seeing.

For fans of Judd Apatow (how can you not be right now?), one of his new films will be released around the beginning of this summer called Forgetting Sarah Marshall. It's about a guy getting dumped by his girlfriend and trying to get over it...except the vacation spot he chooses to get his mind off things happens to be where his ex and her new boyfriend are spending their vacation. Kind of a cheesy, romantic-comedy plot, but let's face it...Judd Apatow has made quite a name for himself with his comedies, so I'll definitely go see this one.

Speaking of directors having made names for themselves, M. Night Shamalabalaba (just kidding...Shyamalan) ["naga...naga...not gonna work here anymore"] is coming out with a new film a few weeks after Forgetting Sarah Marshall. I know a lot of people have been annoyed by some of Night's movies, but personally I think they're all great. Ok, so maybe some of them have some holes in them but he's still very creative and knows how to build suspense. His new flick is called The Happening, which is apparently about "a family on the run from a natural crisis." It comes out on Friday the 13th (oooo spooky) and it has Mark Wahlberg in it (and who doesn't like Marky Mark?)

Jumping ahead to summer of 2009...and you'll probably think I'm crazy for doing so. Ok, first of all it's a horror movie...second of all, it's a remake of an old horror movie about a summer lake resort that of course is accidentally infested by flesh-eating piranhas...and third of all, it will be in 3-D. If that doesn't make you want to sprint to the movie theater (literally...but next summer of course), I don't know what will. It caught my attention mostly though because it's going to be directed by Alexandre Aja. What? You don't know who that is? He directed a horror movie called Haute Tension, which was also released as High Tension, which was also released as Switchblade Romance, which was also released as The Wiggles Rock London (ok, I made that last one up). I caught this movie at a Halloween horror movie fest at the community theater in Fairfield, CT. A guy came out and prefaced the NC-17 movie by saying that it was probably illegal that he was showing it...which definitely tuned me in. It was easily one of the goriest movies (I'd say the goriest but I'd be leaving out Ichi The Killer and Audition) I've ever seen, but it had a suspenseful and very surprising plot too. Anyways, just look at the movie poster from the original movie (above left).

The last two movies that entered my radar won't be released for a while, but they're both going to be directed by Scorcese, so you know they'll be good. First, he'll be directing an adaptation of a Dennis Lehane novel called Shutter Island (but apparently they're changing the name). Lehane is a very good writer, and this will be his third book-turned-movie, the first two being Mystic River and Gone Baby Gone (which I plan on watching after I finish the book, which I just started yesterday). I'm hoping the other movie he's directing will turn out great because it'll be a biopic on Bob Marley. This will not be released until Feb. 6th, 2010 (when Marley would have turned 65).

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Phillies Prank's the time of year when there's sort of a lull in the sports world for me. English/European League Soccer is going on, but a large majority of the games are not shown (but Go Chelsea!) I've never been real into the NBA...and I enjoy watching hockey but I don't watch it too often (but Go Flyers!) I guess what I'm trying to say is neither baseball nor football is being played. But baseball will be back before you know it, and it seems like some players are getting anxious. Case in point: an awesome prank that Brett Myers from the Phillies played on fellow pitcher Kyle Kendrick...

Monday, February 18, 2008

Happy Birthday...

Ok so my birthday post to Lincoln and Darwin last week inspired a lookup of today's birthdays and I think it was fate...

Happy Birthday Dr. Dre!

Lickable Advertising

If you have a subscription to People, make sure you pay close attention to the advertisements in this week's issue. Welch's decided that simply explaining the taste of their grape juice is not enough for the typical magazine reader. So they put out a lickable advertisement. Apparently you peel off a little foil packet, unfold it, and lick the purple square. Is it me or is this just a little bit crazy?

I applaud the pioneering effort of it all because it'll definitely turn heads. (I won't lie...I'd be intrigued by the equivalent of this for beer). But this is like something you would see in the 80's. "Dude-remember those lickable purple stuff ads?" Today, we're living in an increasingly "germophobic" world...where little Billy in Kindergarten got in trouble because he was licking too much of his hand sanitizer that his parents insisted he use every 5 minutes. Magazines get passed around like wildfire...I'm not implying that this lickable ad will be dumbly licked more than once by different people (Although I'm sure it will definitely happen at least once...somewhere). But it will definitely bring up a grossness factor because people will think about that when they see it...even if you buy your own copy and it has a fool-proof way of showing whether it was used or not.

I'm sure the angle of this was to be unique and catch attention (obviously...I'm writing a blog post about it)...everyone is numb to the idea of smellable magazine advertisements by now. But taste is just not something you should literally appeal to in magazine ads. Besides...if you can capture the taste of your juice in a little foil packet between two pages that will be transported across the country, is it really that good?

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Radiohead Will Tour!

As Radiohead gets older, I worry about them ever touring again. Especially since they are very "green" and concern themselves over the environmental impact of touring around the world...and they all have families. But I was very hopeful following their huge success in (almost) pioneering their method of offering their new album online for whatever you want to pay. Critics believed that after what they wrongly claimed was a failure (their online experiment), they would not sell a lot off of their physical release of the album. Well they were sorely wrong...the album topped charts abroad and in the U.S.

It's ironic because Radiohead became one of my favorite groups in high school, when "illegally" downloading was at its peak. I got all of their albums online, for free. Then once they offered their album potentially for free, I actually paid money for it...out of respect and the fact that I knew the money was going directly to them. Perhaps I was unintentionally right to not buy their albums previously because they were not getting the percentage that they deserved off of those sales (ok, maybe I'm stretching it a bit).

What's important (especially these days, for ANY band) is that I will absolutely pay top dollar to see Radiohead live whenever they tour. I've seen them twice before and both shows were easily among the best musical experiences I've had. So, I'm really excited to find out that they are touring again this summer.

They will start in select U.S. cities in May, then tour around Europe, then come back to more, larger cities in July/August (like Philly). So stay alert for alerts.

Westminster Dog Show

I'm very happy to see the winner of the Westminster Dog Show is NOT a poodle...

Congratulations Uno!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


Dubai, of the United Arab Emirates, is quickly becoming the city of the future. The architecture and design of the city is just amazing.

First of all, they have the only seven-star hotel in the world (left). It's designed to look like a sail blowing in the wind. Just as an example of the ridiculousness of the hotel offerings, they have a menu with 13 different pillows/quilts to choose from, in each of the 202 two-floor suites. They have a list of 300 international newspapers to choose from. There are helicopter transfers if you prefer to travel in the air over the arsenal of chauffeur-driven Rolls Royce's.

Have you ever heard of a man-made island? Well the concept was taken to the extreme when plans went underway to construct a series of man-made islands that resemble the entire planet (see right). Apparently, "The World" was completed about a month ago. They will all be private islands, most of which I believe will be for hotels/resorts, but some of them may be for private/commercial use (Dibs on the U.S.!)

So it makes sense that a hot climate with a thriving economy would produce something like "The World." But you can also go skiing in Dubai! That building (on the left) is a freakin' ski resort! Ski Dubai is one of the world's largest indoor ski resorts in the world, the size of about 3 football fields, and it's covered in snow the Middle East...where it's probably about 80 degrees right now. Only a madman would pitch that idea...but now he's a madman rolling in the dough.

So anyways, you might be wondering why I sound like a travel agent desperate for people to book a trip to Dubai. Well, the city has undergone plans for something new: the world's largest arch-bridge, spanning a mile long and 670 feet a mere cost of $817 million. Check out the illustration of what it will look like:

Now I remember seeing a Dirty Jobs episode where Mike Rowe works on a bridge and has to be one of those crazy guys who walks up to the top of the bridge (no thanks). Whatever they pay the people that are going to be doing that on this bridge (when it's done in 2012), it's not enough.

Happy Birthday Lincoln and Darwin!

I'd like to thank Mike for reminding me that today is Abraham Lincoln's birthday. In fact, 199 years ago, both Abraham Lincoln and Charles Darwin were born on this day (which means their bicentennial birthdays will be next year). Their views and philosophies are timeless, so if you're feeling sluggish and lazy today, here are some inspirational quotes for you...

"Leave nothing for tomorrow which can be done today." - Lincoln

"A man who dares to waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life." - Darwin

And here's one that suits me...

I am rather inclined to silence, and whether that be wise or not, it is at least more unusual nowadays to find a man who can hold his tongue than to find one who cannot." -Lincoln

Monday, February 11, 2008

Control Your Road Rage

I was watching a new show over the weekend with my brothers on MOJO (an awesome HD channel by the way), called Technology Jones. The show's premise is to take people who rely on technology for their everyday lives at work and home (who doesn't these days?), and to replace all their gadgets with the old equivalents based on a certain year, and see how it pans out for a week. The one we saw was with a guy who had a LOT of gadgets, including night vision goggles which he used to find his dogs in the dark, a recordable pen, wireless Internet access in his car, sunglasses with MP3 storage, a zippo that's actually a camera, and something else for his car which we thought was really cool...

Instead of acting on your road rage by flipping the bird or rolling your window down to yell obscenities, a company, AutoPlas, made a programmable LED display for cars to display in your back window (Not sure if AutoPlas made the one that the guy used on the show...I'm sure there are a few companies that make these things). Next time someone's tailgating you, just pop up the message, "Back off!" That would probably stop a lot of people in their tracks. Or if someone lets you move into their lane, give them a "Thanks!" message. Or just mess with people and pop up a "I know what you did last summer" to a random car.

A simple technology that's been around for ages...just developed for a specific purpose...and what a great idea! I mean what everyday person finds a good use for an LED display? Barely anyone. How many people get road rage from time to time, or need to communicate to another drive in some way? Practically everyone. It makes you want to think about simple products that sit around with what we think is limited use...until someone uses it to release a product like this, and you give the cliche response, "Why didn't I think of that?"

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Guitar Rising

Did anyone watch the South Park spoof on Guitar Hero? Guitar Queer-O? Stan's Dad (probably my favorite character) watches as Stan and company play Guitar Hero and decides to bust out his real guitar and play the real songs (which of course everyone thinks is lame). Then Stan's Dad tries out playing the game and can't hit a single note.

Point is...I love Guitar Hero...but it doesn't really have anything to do with playing real guitar. I love how when I played, people were like, "oh well you play bass guitar so that helps." Not really.

Here's where Guitar Rising comes in. Expected to come out late this year, it's a program that will come with a USB connection for real guitars (the ones that make real noise when you play them). It looks just like the Guitar Hero games, but it allows you to learn guitar because you're learning the actual notes and progressions (this means 6 strings and a pick...not green-red-yellow-blue-orange buttons and a "strum-bar"). Now kids (and adults like me) can actually have a real shot at becoming a Guitar Hero!

P.S. I know...I italicized "real" like 5 times in this post.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Superbowl - The Commercials

This year, I didn't think there were any real stand-out commercials...but there were definitely a lot.

Though not always the case, a hurdle that the Superbowl commercials have is linking to their websites if necessary. Internet also comes into play as it offers viewers to see all of the commercials again, a perk that myspace took advantage of as it sponsored a page that was advertised during the game, which showed all of the commercials. Personally, I'm not convinced to do that, so I'm reviewing these commercials from the standpoint of one view during the game...

  • Pepsi Max - They played on the nod-off of people without caffeine running through their blood, using the SNL sketch-turned-movie theme. What made the commercial was the ticked-off Chris Kattan at the end of the clip.

  • Audi - Ok, if you're going to use The Godfather as inspiration for your commercial, make it good! This one was dumb...the car looked cool but the lameness of the ad ruined that.

  • Bridgestone - The screaming animals...let's face it, screaming animals are funny. The other one, as we discussed at lunch today...should have made the car steer into Richard Simmons...that would be funny.

  • - The extreme example of linking to your website...the company name is a dot-com (like Amazon, Expedia, etc.) so it's easier off the bat. They were smart though...they offered something exclusively on their website (again, didn't make me get up and check it out, but still smart). And what better to make some beer-drinking male football fans get up and go to your site? A hot chick. Probably wouldn't appeal to any Giants fans, but still...

  • FedEx - The carrier pigeons. Pretty funny...good message.

  • Tide-to-go - Loved this one...speaking jibberish against someone else talking is funny stuff...a stain doing it? even funnier...they did a good job of making the message clear too..."Silence the stain"

  • Budweiser - Good because they've established repetition with the clydesdales so that people associate them with their brand...they seem to be working in the dalmation now too

  • Toyota Corolla - Demonstrated the sound-proof ability of the car by locking the guy in the car with badgers and firing cannons, etc. outside the car...I know it's an exaggeration but how soundproof do you want to be? You want to atleast be able to hear sirens.

  • Garmin - Napoleon...short and sweet...not bad.

  • Careerbuilder - These ones were weird...especially the heart one...except it was memorable and had a solid message..."Follow your heart"

  • Sobe Life Water - Another very, very weird one (lizards dancing to MJ)...but again, weirdness is's just a question of whether the weirdness peaks interest and curiosity (not the case with me)

  • Anti-Drug Ad - I usually think anti-drug ads are dumb because they focus too much on marijuana (instead of cocaine, heroin, etc.)...for once, they had a good message...that kids are using things like household products and OTC meds to get high, which seems to be a real problem.

  • Planters - The one with the unfortunate-looking woman who for some reason peaked every guy's attention (and you find out she's rubbing peanuts on herself) was definitely sucked you in to watch the entire commercial.

  • Fave 5 - Now, I think this is T-mobile...but that's the problem...they focus too much on "Fave 5" rather than their brand name.

  • Pepsi - The one of J-Timb getting sucked away to the girl with the winning soda cap...another example of "sucking" you in to find out what the commercial is J-Timb is dreamy.

  • Doritos - Odd humor...I loved it. The guy set up the mousetrap and waited with a bag of Doritos...and then a huge guy in a mouse costume busted through and tackled him. Good use of "the unexpected."

  • Kia Sportage - This one annoyed me (the car drives away from the running gas attendants). Yes, 25 mpg is decent for an SUV...but we live in a world where hybrids, electrics, etc. are way more fuel-efficient...if it were advertising one of those, I'd love it. Besides, who wants to buy a Kia?

  • - The beginning of both of these commercials did not capture your attention enough...I was grasped when he said "oh because I was going to do..." and the ring-fighter came out (the voodoo guy in the other one). I thought the voodoo one was weak...but the ring fighter in the other one was awesome - made me think of the movie Bloodsport. But...a brand name with the "dot-com" in a good link to their online business.

  • Vitamin Water - I like these ads...this one was not as good as their previous ones though...I mean, if Shaq drinks Vitamin Water, he'll be able to ride a horse faster? C'monnnnn...they should have showed Shaq drink vitamin water and sink a series of foul shots. Ayooo!!

  • E-trade - This one was funny...made me think of the Geico slogan easy a caveman can do it...this one was pretty much, so easy a baby can do it.

  • Coke - How come the Coke ads ran so close to each other? There was the float one where Charlie Brown outsmarts Stewie and Underdog? I don't know about that match-up. Then the other one played to the older crowd, who used the " owe me a Coke" back in the old days, using political figures (Carville and Frist)...I admit I had to look up the spelling of the former (but I know him from Old School of course)

  • Taco Bell - Apparently the mariachi guy was from Allentown, a fact pointed out to me during the commercial, so I couldn't really judge this one.

  • Gatorade - Am I dumb? I didn't get this one...the dog is drinking water, then Gatorade appears with "Man's Best Friend." Can anyone enlighten me?

  • Victoria's Secret - Of course this grabbed my attention (although Adriana is not my favorite V.S. me crazy)...good message though..."guys, you might be making your significant other watch the game right her something for Valentine's Day...from Victoria's Secret of course."

  • Mountain Dew Amp - Another one of my favorites...odd humor but hilarious...the guy clamped his nipples with the cables to jumpstart the car (only after drinking the Dew of course)...I wish I had sat in on that brainstorming session. Ok, After posting this, I go to and the first thing I see is "Amp's Donkey Lips"...I think Dave suggested it was him (Donkey Lips from Salute Your Shorts) this morning but after watching it again, it definitely is...which makes this one my absolute favorite.

You may be thinking...Kev, you forgot the Bud Light ads...well I left them for last since I was looking forward to them the most, since they're usually the funniest...well, I thought they were decent collectively...

  • Fire-Breathing capabilities - They started this campaign before with the "ability to talk to animals" which was a good concept...the dog kept barking and every single word was "sausage"...but it was kind of a weird voice and then whatever the squirrel said ("mind yo' business" or something like that) ruined it. The fire-breathing one was better but I'd say only mildly funny.

  • Cheese Run - Bud Light uses the "guys finding ways to sneak beer into lame events that they're dragged to by girlfriends, wives, whomever" theme a lot (like the guy who brought bottles to the opera which crack once the high note is part of which is the end...the guy in front of them turning around tapping a can saying "first time to the opera boys?")...this one was good hidden in the huge cheese, in the baguette, tv hidden in the box of wine...and of course the best part at the end, when the guy says to his girlfriend, "gotta go on a cheese run" as he walks out the door.

  • Foreign Accents - This one was doomed from the start with me...I hate Carlos Mencia. He has no talent...he steals jokes and he's not even funny when he delivers them. That aside, the concept was good but was poorly delivered.

  • Cavemen with Wheel - The cavemen "discover" the wheel but it was funny because they don't know how to use it...this was one of the better ones.

  • Ability to Fly - Started off good...again I just thought they could have done a better job with the concept...I like this campaign though because it gives a little description of the beer (which they never really did before...they just dove right into the humor) and there are a number of things you can do with the format of this commercial.

  • Will Ferrell - This was probably the best because Will Ferrell is pretty damn funny...especially when he's wearing an old-school basketball uniform (which he plays in a new movie coming out, although they didn't shamelessly plug it in the ad)...I liked the line that went something like "Bud Light is refreshing because a lot of sweat goes into it...not literally, that'd be gross"

So that's my (long) commentary on the Superbowl Ads...I think I'm entitled to a percentage of the millions spent on all of these since I'm giving them more exposure (to the 5 people that read this blog), don't you think?

Superbowl - The Game

"Tonight doesn't take away from anything we have done over the course of the season," New England quarterback Tom Brady said. "We had a great year. It's just unfortunate that tonight turned out the way it did."

Call me cruel, but had any other team in the NFC (besides the Cowboys) beaten the Pats last night, I'd be happy. I don't like the Pats organization, and the hype surrounding their undefeated record was just begging to be smashed. I think Brady had to comment on their season, but I disagree that last night didn't take away from it. Yes, maybe unlike most Superbowl losers, you will be'll be remembered as the team who had a perfect season and blew it when it counted.

I'll reluctantly give credit to the Giants...they did what needed to be done. They rushed Tom Brady in what seemed to be every damn play. Aikman commented on how Brady was forced to quickly throw the ball because he wasn't getting any time in the pocket. I believe that was toward the end of the 3rd quarter. It took the team 3 quarters to adjust to the rush? Where's the so-called genius coaching with that one? The Pats had to know that would be the Giants' game plan from the start. The Pats O-line just got crushed. I don't even know what to say about the Pats' decision to go for it on 4th and 13 when you're in field goal range...just stupid.

It's crushing to know that the Giants organization and their fans will hold this victory over their heads for a long, long time. If it were the Eagles that did it, I know I sure as hell would. But come September, it's a new season...I'll just avoid Giants fans until then.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Frozen in Grand Central

Pretty cool video of an Improv Group who came together (200 people) and froze in different positions throughout the main concourse of Grand Central Station...

Dangerous Dog

Friday, February 1, 2008

Wingbowl 16's the Friday before the Superbowl...and you know what that means...Wing Bowl. Yes, the time when grizzly, large (and suprisingly, some not very large) men congregate in Philly at the Wachovia Center to show who can destroy their body the quickest by eating as many wings as they can. As a past resident of South Jersey, I know that there is a man, who goes by the nickname "El Wingador," who is a hero to some because he represents South Jersey every year when he competes (and what an honor it would be to come from South Jersey...home of El Wingador, Wing Bowl Champion).

But the locals of course want El Wingador to win because he himself is a local. What they don't realize is that there are "athletes," in an actual league (the MLE, Major League Eating) who compete across the country chowing down on various food items. I'm sure most people have heard of the Asian sensation Kobayashi, who definitely does not look like he can eat a lot, but certainly can. The new Tiger Woods of the Major League Eating scene is Joey Chestnut, who claimed fame a few years ago when he won the deep-fried asparagus eating competition (yummy!). I remember getting excited over the Coney Island Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Championship, because there was a lot of hype over Chestnut being able to overtake Kobayashi (which he did...66 hot dogs)

[At this point, you're probably, Kevin is weird...he gets excited over eating competitions...well yes, I do. If I had ESPN Ocho, I'd watch it all the time...I've even watched juggling competitions on ESPN for God's sake. I think Philly sports fans are the same...or atleast they use it as an excuse to drink...apparently people were up at 5 am this morning tailgating for the Wing Bowl - and a good portion of them went to work after the event!]

Anyways, so Major League Eaters are no joke...and Chestnut is the King right now...some of his records?
  • 14 cups of chili in 6 minutes

  • 47 grilled cheese sandwiches in 10 minutes

  • 59 peanut butter sandwiches in 10 minutes

  • 18.5 waffles (8 oz.) in 10 minutes

  • 8.4 pounds pork rib meat in 12 minutes

Now that you're holding back nausea, I think you get the point...this guy is no joke. I wonder what he does for regular meals...because you'd think he'd be enormous, but he's pretty normal size (see pic of him below).

Needless to say, Chestnut won the Wing Bowl (241 feakin' wings!). I'd like to give a shoutout to the guy who came in 4th place, right behind El Wingador...David Goldstein (aka US Male...weak nickname dude!) from my previous hometown...Voorhees, NJ! He was only about 100 wings away from winning!

His mother must be so proud.