Friday, June 25, 2010

Round 16: Another four years to debate whether it's 'soccer' or 'football.' It's soccer, anyway

Thank fuck the Aussies have been bundled out of the Soccer World Cup. I am a proud Australian, but watching the Socceroos faff around the pitch with the heavyweights is just a bit embarrassing. I know they performed better than expected in the 2006 World Cup, but that’s a bit like saying that the Jamaican bobsled team did well at the Winter Olympics and are a shoe-in for gold in the next ones. Sometimes turning up really isn’t that much of an achievement. Just ask the Cowboys.

See that awesome segue from soccer to bobsledding to rugby league? Yes, I am that good.

Dragons vs Tigers
I am still wondering why Saints five-eighth Jamie Soward still hasn’t been mentioned for the NSW #6 jumper. The Saints are smashing everyone, Soward can pass and kick and occasionally make a tackle. He’s the quickest player in the league over 40 metres and has a name that lends itself to a nice “Sweet and Soward” banner. He must have really pissed off the selectors though, as they are looking at dragging Brett Kenny out of retirement from 1985, or digging up Don Bradman to inspire the troops. Personally, I’d have a look at the man who will lead the red’n’whites to a crushing victory. Yes, I got there in the end.

Eels vs Broncos
I think everyone can agree now that Jarryd Hayne sucks. Yes? Good. Broncos to win by a dozen.

Cowboys vs Sharks
In classic Soccer World Cup tradition, this could very well end up nil-all, as neither of these teams have it in them to score a fucking point. But I reckon the Sharkies will sneak home on the back of a Trent Barrett header.

Rabbitohs vs Storm
The Storm have got nothing to play for… except their millions of dollars and supermodel girlfriends. That should inspire them to win. Fuck, it would probably inspire me.

Roosters vs Warriors
This is a tricky one to pick; it’s a home game for the Sydney Roosters, yet it is being played in New Zealand, which is the traditional home of the New Zealand Warriors, and far from the sun-drenched beaches and coke-smeared hookers of Bondi that the Roosters are used to. Seeing has the Roosters have more Kiwis than the Warriors anyway, I’m going to tip them. PS. Every time I tried to type ‘Warriors’ in this post, I typed ‘Warrirors’. It was really annoying.

Titans vs Knights
It’s the CLASH OF THE TITANS… and the Knights. This game gets my “Mister Evil Breakfast Award For The Game Of The Round That I Care Least About” (MEBAFTGOTRTICLA) and as such I will just say that I hate Kurt Gidley like I hate all venereal diseases, and Matt Rogers is a dick. Titans to win.

Canberra vs Canterbury
The Raiders are Monday night football specialists, especially at home, and even moreso against their arch rivals (from 1994), the Bulldogs. The Doggies are just a really bad football team, regardless of the day, place or opponent. With old man Kimmorley doing whatever the hell he’s doing to keep Canterbury securely stapled to the bottom of the ladder, this will be an easy 2 points for the mighty fucking Raiders.

Everybody tips, sometimes…

another day, another crowbar

I am not, at time of writing, a celebrity. And I will tell you why – it has nothing to do with talent or looks or marketing. It is because I am not a whore.

Celebrities go on chat shows with Oprah and Ellen and Letterman and talk about what’s going on in their life. I have no problem with rich people doing rich person things, but it’s when they expect applause for every fucking little thing they do, that I get pissed off.

“So what did you do for your holidays?”
“After filming ‘Another Shit Movie 4’, I felt like I needed a break, so I headed to the unspoilt tropical paradise of the Caribbean with my family for a few months. It was just what we needed, you know, swimming with dolphins and relaxing for eighteen hours a day on the beach.”
“Well you thoroughly deserved it; your role ‘Another Shit Movie 4’ is being touted as one of the hardest characters you’ve ever played.”
“That’s right, it was very difficult. I had to do a lot of research, you know, reading and such, to really understand the character. I even met with people who had been through similar experiences to my character and spoke to them about it. Yeah, it was a really tough time.”
*audience applauds*
“Well, you were paid over $10 million to do this film, but it sounds like you really earned your money.”
“Oh definitely. I mean, filming took a couple of weeks, like, five or six weeks. And it was intense. Some of the scenes were really late at night, others were very early in the morning, plus I had to have my make-up and hair done every day – sometimes more than once a day – which was really hard as well.”
“I understand you were injured while filming?”
“Yeah, that’s correct – it’s a really intense scene on a boat where I fall into the water. And the water was really cold. When I fell in, the cold water shocked me so much that I thrashed around a bit too much - I went into shock - and scratched my arm on the protective harness I was wearing. But you know, these things happen and after a bit of time back on land, I was like, 'You know what? Let’s just film this scene.'”
*audience applauds*
“You also had a baby recently, am I right?”
“That’s right as well – my wife and I recently welcomed our baby Arizona D’Artagnan Makynzie.”
*audience applauds*
“Thanks, thanks a lot. It was a really special time.”
“And how is Arizona going with the family?”
“Just great. She is sleeping a few hours a night – “
“Just like you, am I right?”
“—haha yeah, exactly. I mean it’s hard, passing her onto our live-in nanny, but with a yoga-lates class early the next morning, I really do need my eight hours. It's true what they say, being a parent is very hard work. But you know what? I wouldn't change a damn thing.”
*audience applauds*
“You’re preaching to the converted, my friend! Ladies and gentleman, please thank special guest Over Paid Actor!”
*audience applauds*

Friday, June 18, 2010

Round 15: Let’s forget about last week

I knew I remembered NSW making a tackle. And here it is.

Last week’s tips were heavily influenced by head injuries and prescription drugs.
This week’s tips are proudly presented by sanity and beer. Onwards!

Broncos vs Panthers
This game is sponsored by C&C Music Factory, who brought us the classic hit “Things that make you go hmmm” because this game is making me go “hmmm” as well. Hmmm. I’m going the way of the Bronco, because I’m sick of the Panthers losing when I tip them.

Bulldogs vs Titans
This CLASH OF THE TITANS and the Bulldogs is brought to you by a hammer and your testicles. Watching these teams play is about as fun as combining the aforementioned sponsors over and over and over again. For those without testicles and therefore cannot relate to the metaphor, please contact your nearest support group for people without balls - I recommend the NSW State of Origin side. Titans to win, just so the Dogs can stay on the bottom of the ladder. Losers.

Storm vs Cowboys
Proudly presented by the time-honoured Participation Certificate. Neither of these teams will feature in the finals series; one because they are dirty, sneaky bastard liar thieves and the other because they’re just really really shit. But since it’s written in my contract that I must select a winner for each game (and no, I don’t really have a contract), I’m going to put my faith in the Storm once more.

Manly vs Souths
This game is brought to you by Oz Lotto – where your chances of picking the winning numbers are slightly easier than choosing a winner here. I’m going for the Bunnies. Surely they can’t be as bad as they were last week. Surely.

Sharks vs Dragons
Proudly presented by Don Bradman - the Dragons will be looking to knock up a century within the first session without breaking sweat. They will later demolish the frail Sharks batting line-up and win by an innings and 80 runs.

Tigers vs Raiders
This match is brought to you by House – you know what’s going to happen without even needing to watch it. The Raiders will race to a seemingly insurmountable lead by halftime, and then have that seemingly insurmountable lead surmountably mounted and they’ll end up losing by at least 10. Fucking Raiders, fucking fuck. Oh, and Dr House will cure a patient after spending 50 minutes wondering what the fuck was wrong with them when he is inspired by a pigeon with a broken wing.

Knights vs Eels
Proudly sponsored by VB because it is the everyman beer. It may not be your first choice of amber fluid, but if it’s being offered, you’ll take it. If you need to provide beer, it’s a good option. It’s like O negative blood. The Knights and the Eels are two decidedly average teams who are playing very average footy at the moment. This one could average itself out to a draw, but my pick is for the Eels to sneak home by the skin of Nathan Hindmarsh’s left buttcheek.

I am proud to be associated with tipping a full round this week.

Good friends

If you’re not an avid Neighbours watcher like me, you’re missing out BIG TIME. Seriously. Lucky for you, I’m here to take you through the nitty and the gritty of the Erinsborough chronicles of the last few weeks...

First things first, don’t be alarmed by the tall guy who has taken over the character of the short guy. It’s just a new actor playing Declan, and I use the term “actor” fairly loosely, even for Neighbours standards. It was hard to get used to, even for a shit character like Declan. I don’t know why they didn’t just kill him; it’s not like he offers anything to the Neighbours universe that no one else can. I would have liked for him to die in a kidnap and hostage scene, personally. By Lou.

The old and new Declans. Can you spot the difference?

The big news around town is that Toadie and Steph got sham-married. AAAAAAW. It was a beautiful wedding, really. Everyone was there – Karl, Susan, some extras… and even Lynne decided to pop in from the 80s to give a speech. Pity she didn’t have time to get changed beforehand, but these things happen. Shoulder pads and ruffles never go out of style though.

The best thing about the Toad/Toadette nuptials is even though everyone who was invited knew that they were only getting married because Steph rooted Libby’s husband and got pregnant and didn’t want to tell Libby about it and Toadie was saving her ass and it wasn’t a real wedding, they all gave presents and went through the motions of giving their congratulations to “the happy couple.”

Due to the overwhelming normality of the situation that the Toads found themselves in, Man-Toad decided to make the day a bit more memorable, so he snogged his ex-girlfriend after the reception at Charlie’s Bar (where else?). I don’t care how sham your marriage is, that’s probably not a great thing to do… and if you do decide to do it, make sure you don’t get caught… by Libby. And then, when confronted about your infidelity, don’t say, “It was a one-off thing, I made a mistake.” If you can’t quite remain faithful for the three hours following your “I do’s”, you should probably rethink your whole life.

The reception was typical Neighbours awesomeness. Everyone was home by 9pm and no one was drunk. Actually, it kind of teams up with the Neighbours-ness of Toadie's buck’s party, which was held at Charlie’s Bar one afternoon and finished… shortly later that afternoon. I guess that’s what happens when (a) you aren’t marrying your girlfriend, (b) you have no mates, and (c) you let a ten-year old organise it for you.

And because there was one shit wedding going on, it got Ringo’s tiny little mind whirring, so he decided to propose to Hot Donna. AAAAAAAAAAAW.

Ringo's proposal required a few things:
1. He had to actually ask her to date him.
2. He had to gain approval from her father.
3. Hot Donna had to track down her father who had not contacted her for 18 years.

So Hot Donna’s dad gave Ringo the all-clear to date his daughter, but warned him “not to fuck her around again like he did last time.” Ringo agreed to these terms and conditions, signed the contract and handed over his soul, including the part of him that remembers watching Hot Donna have sex with the Sometimes Scottish Son of Paul Robinson on the internet. But you know, as long as he doesn’t hurt her again, they should be fine.

Ringo, by the way, is currently on his billionth job since leaving school last year – he has become a musician, then he was a paramedic until a chick he resuscitated became infatuated with him and started stalking him, so he quit to become a brick-laying apprentice. Apparently being a brickie pays fairly sweetly, because he proposed to Hot Donna with a diamond that had seventeen visible satellites orbiting it.

Hot Donna herself has had an interesting few weeks as well, having just recovered from being involved in a horrible accident on Ringo’s worksite that required immediate brain surgery. How they managed to crack her noggin open and fix up the grey matter without ruining her hair is beyond me, but that’s the fucking wonder miracles of Dr Karl. I can’t wait for the episode when he announces that he is the son of God.

My thoughts for the future:
.. Libby will find out about Steph’s dirty little secret.
.. Zeke will continue to be awesome in everything he does, including carrying a crate of records with him wherever he goes. Someone should tell the props guy that a radio DJ is different to being a club DJ with turntables and shit. I'm pretty sure Zeke's radio station isn't playing the latest Guy Sebastian single on vinyl.
.. Harry will become an international basketball star. One cameo by Andrew Gaze just wasn’t enough for me.
.. Paul will club Libby’s ugly child to death with his fake leg. Oh god please.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

all these feathers keep knocking me down

Breaking story: Australia lose to Germany in the FIFA Soccer World Cup.

In a shock twist, Aussie fans direct their blame towards Socceroos coach, Dutch-born Pim Verbeek.

In other news, the sun is expected to rise tomorrow.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Round 14: Origin II: Origin’s Revenge

Sequels of note: Spider-man 2, The Dark Knight, Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakwel - which had a much more clever name than Alvin and the Chipmunks: The First Piece of Shit Movie.

Sequels not so much of note: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2: The Secret of the Ooze, Superman 2, Speed 2: Cruise Control.

Some real career killers in there. Will Origin 2 fizzle out? If Origin 1 has any reflection on the way things will go – the answer is yes.

Titans vs Manly
It’s the CLASH OF THE TITANS... and Manly! To be perfectly Francis, I think I’ve run out of ways to insult these two teams, so I’ll just let their sub-standard performances in this game do the sledging for me. I’m slightly torn as to who will win this game – Manly are depleted due to injury and State of Origin duties, and the Titans are depleted due to being from Queensland. Fuck it, I’m going for the Titans. It was going to hurt either way.

Cowboys vs Raiders
I think this is probably the first time this season that Raiders coach Dave Furner has looked ahead and thought, “Yeah, fuck yeah. Another two points for us!” before heading to the pub. The Green Machine to have this one wrapped up by the 20 minute mark.

Knights vs Warriors
God. Tipping this is like having to kiss your sister. And I mean YOUR sister (the uggo one), because I don’t have one. F*ck it, I’m going for the Knights, only because Gidley won’t be around to fuck things up for them again.

Broncos vs Rabbits
The Rabbits have ten players out due to injury, suspension and Origin. That’s a fair whack. But I can’t tip the Broncs, because I don’t like them. That was easier than I thought.

Storm vs Roosters
These idiots were both less than awesome last week as well. The Roosters got beaten by the Sharks, man. That’s fairly embarrassing. The Storm should be able to wrap this one up by about 30 and come away with the 0 points.


Origin 2 will follow the tried-and-true theme that made the Home Alone series so fucking entertaining – don’t change a damn thing and just watch people flock to it. Another game, another Maroon victory and that makes it 5 years in a row that the trophy has gone north. I blame Macauley Culkin. How the hell he got together with Mila Kunis is anybody’s guess - just like how Kurt Gidley is (a) picked for NSW, and (b) selected as captain. I'm sure he'll do a bang-up job at leading the team from the bench.

Tip it. Tip it. Tip it real good.

Sweep the leg

Won’t Somebody Not Think Of The Children?

Children are the future

I know that children are the future. According to Whitney Houston, if we teach them well, we can let them lead the way.

Fuck that in the ear. Whitney Houston taught us one thing: Crack isn’t as awesome as we first thought.

Every fucking idiot in the world apparently needs to worry about how everything they do, say or touch is “going to affect the children.” Even the foodstuffs that grace the supermarket shelves give me ‘helpful’ information about how eating it will benefit my growing bones and provide me with the energy I need to get through a busy day at school. I am fairly certain at 30 years of age (31 this year, that’s a bit fucking scary), my bones have done all the growing they’re going to do. I’ll start shrinking before I grow any more, but thanks for the help, Sultana Bran. And if I get enough energy to get me through a highly stressful day at school, I think I’d die. School these days is about wagging off maths to smoke in the toilets, Facebooking your way through history class, texting your mates at lunch and spitting and swearing at your teachers the rest of the time.

Don't adults get a look in at anything anymore? Can't we eat something just for the sake of eating it without having to wonder how it is going to help lower my cholesterol or keep me regular? Is that what life has come to for me -worrying about how often I should be taking a crap? At what point did I stop trying to get seventy million different vitamins from a bowl of cereal to get me through a hectic day of sitting around a classroom to needing eighteen tonnes of fibre so I can take a massive dump while thinking about eating a different brand of butter so my heart can cope with the stress of sitting around an office cubicle?

Even worse news for those celebrities amongst us - and anyone can be a celeb these days - you have to watch yourself every fucking second of every fucking day. Whatever you do, don’t get caught having a beer at your local pub – there are kids who look up to you, fucko! Are you trying to turn them into alcoholics?! Don’t you know that kids will do EVERYTHING they see their idols do? Ignore the fact that their idols are probably rich, dumb sluts who got a reality TV show by releasing a sex tape of them and a shit rapper that no one's ever heard of. Everyone needs a role model.

Whether you won Big Brother eight years ago, just got back from a Sumo-wrestler-bench-pressing competition or are in training for a beer-drinking tournament, these kids are looking up to you and you are not allowed to shatter their tiny dreams of how fucking perfect you and the world is.

Because it is. Just ask Whitney.

Just ask her

Friday, June 04, 2010

Round 13: Rockin the Casbah

After last week’s foray into the seedy underworld of gambling, I came out with $86.84 of pretend money from tipping five games correctly. If I continue like this, I should be a self-made millionaire by the end of Round 16.

Let’s roll onto this week’s tips:

Bulldogs vs Tigers
I really really really really really really don’t like the Bulldogs (except for that Morris guy, I think he’s alright). I have no feelings about the Tigers (except for Lote, I think he’s a douche). My tip goes the way of the striped cat this week.

Eels vs Storm
The Eels will be hungry for this one – they lost to the dirty cheating Mexican thieves in the Grand Final last year and think they (a) have a point to prove, and (b) can beat the Storm and win bragging rights. Even if Parra had an extra $700,000 to spend on players, they’d just give pay rises to Hayne and Hindmarsh and they’d lose all the same. Storm Storm Storm.

Panthers vs Knights
If you’re a betting man (like me), the Knights would be a juicy pick. But if you’re a smart man (like me), you’d stick with the Panthers. If you’re a good looking bloke (like me), it wouldn’t matter, because I’m probably more good lookinger than you.

Roosters vs Sharks
They might have to employ the mercy rule for this puppy – the Roosters should be able to rack up about fifteen cricket scores on the Sharks. I think Carney will be in for a quick-fire thirty odd and then chime in for a few cheap wickets with his gentle medium pacers on a flat pitch.

Warriors vs Dragons
There’s not much room left on the Dragons bandwagon, but if you get in now, I’ll save you a seat.

Raiders vs Titans
It’s the CLASH OF THE TITANS… and the Raiders. Sorry about missing that last week. I don’t see anyone beating the Raiders this weekend, to be perfectly Francis. They’re at home, I might even be at the game (which is enough to inspire anyone), and it’s probably going to be ball-numbingly cold, which may affect Matt Rogers’ greasy hair and Scott Prince will be missing his palm trees. Raiders by at least 40, and I’m not even kidding.

Manly vs Broncos
That fucking Folou fuckwit can go fuck himself in the fucking ear. Fucking dick fuck. Manly to win and Fuckbag McFuckfuck deserves every fucking piece of dirty play that Manly can muster (and they can muster a lot). There’s a lot riding on Israel Folau’s kicking game in this one.

Rabbits vs Cowboys
Sorry Cows, but your year of shit is going to continue. I do enjoy watching Souths play – they have an odd mix of the biggest blokes in the world playing alongside some people who I’d be fairly confident in fighting (without a crowbar). The lads in myrtle and crimson to win this by at least 20.

Let's talk about tips, baby.

A hug from Rusty is all anyone ever really needs

Thursday, June 03, 2010

George Clooney

It was the damndest thing, really. It was late on a Wednesday night; Letterman had just interviewed George Clooney, and thrown to a commercial. I figured I had enough time to grab some food during the break. I leapt from the couch and went foraging through my freezer for some ice cream and I found a human head. There it was, right up the back, resting on a bag of frozen peas. It’s fairly shocking, I can tell you that; it’s not every day you’re looking for dessert and you find someone’s head. I didn’t recognise it as anyone’s head that I knew, but I wasn’t sure if that made me feel any better; I don’t know how I’d react if it was my neighbour or one of my friends’ heads that was in my freezer. I guess I’d be upset or something – if it was a good friend, I reckon I’d cry. If it was my neighbour, I think I’d have to feign some kind of emotion, maybe do some kind of quiet monologue in my kitchen about how “I never really got to know you” and “you were a good neighbour who didn’t complain about noise and was always cooking stuff that smelled really nice.”

The head itself was pretty non-descript; it was just a man’s head. The face had no distinguishing features and was pretty much instantly forgettable. So forgettable, in fact, that I was distracted by Letterman’s voice returning from commercial and announcing the Top Ten list (“Top Ten Things Overheard at the Sex and the City 2 premiere”), that I closed the freezer door and went back to the couch. I fell asleep just before Dave Matthews came on and woke up to Magic Bullet infomercials a few hours later.

So the head kind of stayed in my freezer and I didn’t even think of it until I was looking for some frozen yoghurt a few days later. I can’t remember actually ever buying frozen yoghurt, but was hoping that there was some in there anyway, possibly behind a take-away dish that contained spaghetti bolognaise that I put it in there in 2007. I opened the door and there was the head, still on its bed of peas. I took it out and gave it a quick examination. Clean cut, no blood, no signs of blunt trauma. I congratulated myself on some spontaneous CSI jargon. I should get a job in forensics.

I tossed the head around idly while thinking about what to do with it. I decided that I should probably call someone and get their opinion on it. I considered the police – surely this was their kind of thing. But I didn’t want to get caught up in an investigation or anything; I’d probably have to fill out a bunch of paperwork and be recorded in interviews and have those interviews shown on CrimeStoppers and A Current Affair. Besides, I don’t like the way my voice sounds on tape.

So I rang my friend Wilson. I’ve known Wilson for years; we went to school together and when I found a skateboard outside my house a few years ago, he was the one I went to. He said that he knew whose skateboard it was and returned it to them, so I figured he’s pretty good at finding people who had lost things like sports gear and heads. So I pulled out my phone and dialled his number (he was speed dial #3, by the way).

“Yes mate.”
“I found a head in my freezer.”
“Oh. Is it someone you know?”
“No. I don’t recognise it at all. It’s just some guy’s head.”
I tried to spin the head on the tip of my finger like a basketball, but it didn’t work.
“Have you called the police?”
“No, not yet.”
“Good, because they’ll record you and you sound like a dick on tape.”
“I thought that too.” Then I added, “The head shows no sign of blunt trauma.”
“You should get a job in forensics.”
“I know. Thanks for your help man.”

I hung up and decided to just chuck the head away - it was bin day tomorrow anyway. Maybe someone else would find it at the tip and take it home and care for it more than I could. I opened my rubbish bin and dropped it in. As I closed the lid, I took one last look at the head from my freezer and wondered where the fuck that thing had come from anyway, and whether the torso that was in my cupboard had anything to do with it. The head didn’t look like it would have worn the torso’s shirt, but I might have been wrong. I’ve been wrong about things like this before.