Criticize me

Criticize me

7-14-15

Please, hurl your words.

Sticks and stones, do you worst.

I’ll feed off your anger.

I eat jealousy.

Please, make your jokes.

I’ve heard them all.

I’ve been through worse, yet I’m walking tall.

I’ll turn all your hate around.

While you stew in your disgust.

I’ve got plenty words left my friend.

So do as you must.

I’ll laugh.

You’ll cry.

I’ll live.

You’ll hide.

I’ll raise my glass.

To a place in the sky.

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Fantasy Forecast: Preseason rankings

This will be your one-stop-shop before the preseason games get underway. It’s basically a collection of my “2014 end of season rankings” I will be putting out my updated list as we get closer to draft time. If you are in a Fantasy Football league, hopefully you are drafting as close to the start of the season as possible.

Quarterbacks– I pretty much still have them ranked the same. If I was drafting the first QB off the board, I would probably take Rodgers over Luck. It’s a coin toss.

Running backs– I did not put Adrian Peterson in the top 10 simply because we didn’t know what team he would be on. I think it’s safe to place him in the top 3. Bump down the other RBs accordingly.

Wide receivers– Since Brandon Marshall was ‘traded’ to the Jets, I would drop him down and move the other two up. I would put in Kelvin Benjamin at the 10 spot. This is no knock on Brandon. I still think he is one of the top 5 WRs. I don’t have much faith in Geno Smith as his QB. Marshall could end up being a steal as he probably wants to show the Bears they were wrong to let him go.

Tight ends– The most compelling question will probably be where to rank Jimmy Graham who got traded from the Saints. It’s safe to say he will be the guy in Seattle. The Seahawks running game should open things up for him in the red zone.

Florence + The Machine is playing Lollapalooza today here in Chicago, so I thought I would share. Fantasy Football is kind of a cosmic thing. No?

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Forgotten tracks: Joe Satriani

You may not know him by name, but you probably have heard his guitar. Soaring through the air, conquering space and time. Okay, more likely on Sunday sports highlights on your local news station. Joe Satriani is a virtuoso guitar legend and a prolific uplifter of spirits. He enjoyed a good amount of popularity on rock stations in the late 80s and into the mid 90s. Every now and then you might hear one of his songs.

Flying in a blue dream- This song was responsible for me naming my softball team, “The Flying Blue Dawgs”. The rest of the team liked it so much, the co-captain changed it to “Beernuts” and took full control over the team next season. The song is pretty great though, and the title of Satriani’s 2nd album.

Surfing with the alien– The title track and probably most popular song.

Friends– I forgot how much I loved this song until I put it on to do this list. I must admit, I made a few “mix tapes” with this song on it.

Always with me, always with you– This was my first experience with Joe Satriani. I heard this on a local station a few times before I finally found out who it was. Shortly after, I ‘discovered’ the delight that was BMG music and bought “Surfing with the Alien”. The rest is pretty much history. Great song. Still get feels when I hear it played.

Can’t slow down– Great car driving song (as long as you don’t go over the speed limit). Satriani adds his gritty vocals to the song, which is one of my favorites.

Summer song– A great anthem for being alive. Signature ‘Satch’ coming in groovy, letting you know he will be here for a while. Sit down, have a drink or two!

Circles– Satriani proves time and time again, he’s not just a ‘shredder’. He goes for melody and hooks too. Sometimes lulls you to sleep and then explodes. This is one of those songs.

I believe– Another song featuring ‘Satch’ on vocals, proving once again, he is more than just a virtuoso. Perhaps one of his most complete songs.

The forgotten part 2– Kind of a grown up version of “always with me, always with you”. A little richer and more mature?

Cryin’– A beautiful love song–with no words. Just Joe making love with his guitar. I’m not even playing.

One Big Rush– This is a really cool, groovy, and just fun song. This song could fit on any of his albums. It’s signature ‘Satch’ from start to finish.

Home– This song will take you there. Help you think of the best times. Takes me back to the first time I left on my own and came back to town.

Big bad moon– Joe takes you to Texas for a little southern style rock. I think he hung out a little with Stevie Ray and ZZ Top before coming up with this one ;)

The Feeling– How many great guitarists can pick up a banjo and go to town on it? I don’t know the answer but this is just crazy.

Day at the beach (New rays from an ancient sun)– ‘Satch’ gets technical and melodic on this great song.

Mountain song– Classic Satriani. Taking you up hill, over a river, but we’re not going to grandma’s. No. Welcome to grove town!

Rubina’s blue sky happiness– Where have we heard banjo before? He does it again! This time he incorporates it into a full song.

Moroccan sunset– Joe goes international on us. I love the flavor of this song. ‘Satch’ brings us Morocco like few else can.

Oriental melody– ‘Satch’ takes us on another journey. This time it’s somewhere between Tokyo and Jupiter. He blasts off into a space we might never have been, until now.

Sittin’ ’round– A nice little rhythm and blues track. ‘Satch’ style of course. So grab a cold glass of lemonade and sit out on the porch. Enjoy!

20 songs in, I know I am leaving so many good ones out. If you like guitar, and don’t own any Joe Satriani albums, I hope this will push you in that direction. I hope you have enjoyed this journey through space and time. I had a blast!

 

 

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Card of the week: Southsea Deckhand

This week’s card of the week comes with an eye on the horizon: The Grand Tournament was announced last week and some of the cards were Pirates. This made me immediately think of the Pirate cards we already have available to us and one in particular: Southsea Deckhand.

Hearthstone Screenshot 07-31-15 13.50.49

Keep a weathered eye on the horizon for the Southsea Deckhand. You may be seeing a lot more of him soon.

On the surface, Southsea Deckhand is a 2/1 common minion. However, if you have a weapon equipped, it gets Charge. Not bad for 1 mana–but wait, there’s more! If you play a rogue or paladin, you have some buffs to add to that.

The strategy: The strategy with this card will vary. Early in the game you can use it for a quick attack, later in the game: a lethal blow. You can buff up the card as I mentioned earlier. You can use a card such as a Youthful Brewmaster or Shadowstep to place it back in your hand. Since it is a very low cost mana card, it works well with many other cards.

Cards that accent it: Obviously, it works best with classes that have weapons and can buff minions. Paladin and rogue are the best two. Hunter isn’t too bad. Warrior is OK but they have their own cards for Charge so you might want to use some beefier minions. Here are some that work really well:

Bonus play: If you are playing a paladin or rogue there are many cards to shield or hide the Southsea Deckhand once you buff him up. It’s nice to hit hard once, even better to do it twice! Pirate synergy looks like it will be more of a thing once The Grand Tournament launches in August.

How to acquire: Southsea Deckhand can be found in Original Hearthstone packs or crafted for 40 dusts.

That’s it for this week. Start getting your Pirate force ready maties! See you next Friday!

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What are your expectations for yearly expansions?

With the announcement of the next Warcraft expansion coming on August 6th, it could possibly be the start of annual expansions for Warcraft. Something that the developers have talked about for years and years, possibly coming to fruition. So what do you expect from this new deployment?

blizzard gamescom announcement

If Warlords of Draenor is the new model for yearly expansions, I think it’s both hit and miss. The questing/leveling has been some of the best since Wrath, perhaps even better. Garrisons are pretty fun, if not a little addicting. Unfortunately for me, I have done little else. This is at least partially my fault. We can probably get used to not having more 5 man dungeons added during a shorter expansion, there probably won’t be a “catchup mechanic” either for players who did not start at launch.

If the price stays what it is now, (currently $50 USD) is this enough content for you? Warlords has been looked at as one of the lightest expansions on content, even passing up Cataclysm for that title.

If the quantity is going to be lessened, then I want more quality for my money, or a reduced price. Or both. My fear is that with a quicker development cycle we will lose both quantity and quality. At any rate, my expectations are this:

  • Engaging questing (cut the filler, just give me relevant story)
  • Smart and efficient reputation (perhaps even account wide)
  • Fun PvP (I know this is subjective, my example would be Wintergrasp)
  • At least 1 major quest hub for max level
  • Return to ‘normal’ crafting
  • Transmog rules loosened

In addition to the normal fun things such as Pet Battles/collecting, achievements, exploration, etc.

So what are your expectations for the new expansion? Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments down below!

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Brawl of the week: Too Many Portals!

This week’s Tavern Brawl is, Too Many Portals! I believe we had a similar fight in Black Rock Mountain, but my memory is a little fuzzy on that. At any rate, you pick your class and you go to work with a premade deck–that includes, too many portals!

Too many portals

This week’s Tavern Brawl: Too Many Portals!

It’s a fun way to play the really fun mage card, Unstable Portal, as that will be the “meat” of your deck. In addition, you get a few class spells of the class you choose.

Did someone say portals

Did someone say portals?

I got really lucky at the end of my match as my opponent had the field littered with badness. I pulled a Windspeaker who gave my War Golem Windfury and smashed his face for 14 points of damage. I then used Dragon Breath for the lethal. I did say “Thank You!”.

Thank you!

This week’s brawl is great for all players, especially newer players who might not have a big catalog of cards yet. So log on and partake in some shenanigans! See you next Wednesday!

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Brady making a mistake by going to court?

I like Tom Brady. I think this whole deflate gate thing is kind of silly. I wrote about that back in January. I don’t think deflating or inflating a football can help you throw it much farther or much more accurately. It may give you confidence, which can’t be measured with any known instrument.

Tom Brady has thrown the football well through wind, sleet, rain, and snow. Do you really think it was because the ball was a little lighter? I’m not sure a lighter ball would cut through the wind. It might be a little better in the rain and snow. It’s not going to make his receivers be in the right spot or catch better.

If you are a fan of football, you probably already know this.

That’s not the issue though. Personal feelings aside. The balls were altered. They were caught red handed. This is a fact. To me, the issue is the cover up. For some reason Brady did not want to fully cooperate and hand over his phone. Instead of taking his punishment like a good boy, he decided to fight the ruling and seek and appeal. After the penalty was upheld, he now wants to take it to court where: his phone records could become public. Maybe he thinks his lawyers are really great, or maybe he already sought out the best geeks to wipe his phone clean and get rid of all the evidence.

This seems to be going beyond his reputation though. This seems to be more than vanity. It makes me want to know what was on that phone. Kind of like Tom Cruise badgering Jack Nicholson to tell him the truth. Perhaps, we can’t handle the truth. What dark, dirty secrets did Tom have on his cell phone? We may never know. I do know that legally, the court will have a right to find out, and if they can, all your skeletons will come out. Unless Brady thinks he can plea in court and have the documents sealed as a part of the bargain. Either way, he already lost in the court of public opinion.

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