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SPORTS:

Who's smoking dope? I smelled some serious
marijuana up there in the stands people. It
seemed to be coming from the VIP section. Hmmm.
Tim Thomas and Ray Allen had great game bringing
the Bucks from a very narrow half time lead to beat
the Trailblazers 101-79.

Portland's Scotty Pippin played really well but
the trailblazers as a team seemed just a little off.
Maybe too much hanging around in the Hyatt or carousing
around in Knuckles Bar or SafeHouse before the game.

It was not easy to root for my Milwaukee hometeam
this game for two reasons. First, I'm from Connecticut
and I landed these tickets late enough that I didn't
have a chance to check with more sports-competent
friends as to how a Bucks win or loss might affect
any Celtics outcomes. I remember a lifetime or two
ago being such a major Celtics fan, I thought Larry
Bird used to be President of the United States in my
social studies tests. Lastly, I REALLY LIKE THE PORTLAND
OREGON COLOR SCHEME!!!

Red and black is the shit, man. I'm telling you. As
a youth, I played for both soccer teams and baseball
companies that had red and black "anthems." And besides
I just plain dig everything red & black stands for.
That's why my favorite bird in the world is the little
old vulture they call the redwinged blackbird.

But I digress. I watched Tim Thomas grab two three-
point plays in a row, and a normal basket right after
that. Some playing! He had game with 5 threepointers
total, among 25 points and under the boards he got
himself seven rebounds. Cassell did almost as well
as Thomas getting himself 19 points and 10 assists.

I'll be honest, I'm rooting for the hometeam for
one reason since my other indicators were absent.
Ray Allen's my boy, being from Connecticut and all.

Unlike the Urinal Sentinel newspaper I will
mention a couple Portland names however. Bonzi Wells
was in very good form last night. Pippin did somewhere
between "fair" and "midland."

Rasheed needs just a few more tattoos and he'll
be able to disrupt all freethrows by his self
just be standing upright on the court.

This game wasn't a blowout by any stretch.
The only huge bursts came in the 3rd and 4th
quarters, so that made for some exciting b-ball.

So here go some things I noted during the game.
Who played saxofone at the beginning of the show?
That's the first National Anthem I've heard in
about 11 years I didn't find downright boring.
Quite a rendition. And the ending was outragious.
Twice he commanded incredible applause, and never
once did he bust into those stupid Kenny G
stylistic triplets that every intermediate sax
player falls into so often.

Who's smoking dope? I smelled some serious
marijuana up there in the stands people. It
seemed to be coming from the VIP section. Hmmm.
So at 9-9 early on they played the Car Wash
theme. I'll find out later that it's the second
most popular song at all Bucks games. My partner
says she wishes they'd play more than just the
snippet though. She and I really wanted to show
off that not only are we old enough to remember
the whole song, but good enough to sing it out
word for word and note for note.

The people running sound surely deserve the
millions of technology thrown at them, they
have it going on. Good music, good teleprompts,
good vibes.

So you knew the Bucks were going to win when
Portland called the first time-out at 16-9.
They're going to have to play catch-up from
that moment on. It's clear. Jose Feliciano's
Feliz Navidad plays while TVlandia gets to
watch couples all over the bleachers get
mistletoed.

So what member of what team had their
birthday February 26th? They'd share that
with Johnny Cash, Fernando Carulli and a
whole bunch of other very fine people. I
only caught the last of that. Missed it
basically. I wasn't paying attention really
because I was so bothered and turned off by
the whole "Verizon sponsors 'Meet The Bucks.'"

At 22-19 Bonzi gets net. That made me think
Portland had a chance. Here comes that Carwash
theme again.

The Bucks cheerleaders make their first
appearance to Jimi Hendrix' "Let Me Stand Next
To Your Fire." Never mind that I've met some
of them, I have to say that not only are they
much better looking than the Dallas Cowboys
Cheerleaders used to look when I was a teenager,
but they seem to be a heck of a lot more savvy
and intelligent. Something tells me that Cheer
in general is nowhere near as ditzy-dinghy a
field as it used to be when I was coming up.

Maybe it's me, call me old-fashioned, but when
hometeams make noise during free-throws I get
not just annoyed but deeply offended. Why?
That's just rude. Over the top, man. When I
played b-ball (and don't get me wrong. I stunk
at basketball - soccer and baseball were my
sports) we were completely disallowed from
making noise during a freethrow. Some of the
penalties levied for such obnoxious behavior
were things like clearing the bench, single
fouls, or in the case of the crowd doing it
one of the coaches was given a technical.

So Bonzi Wells got the Portland 40th point
in a way that made me think of the Harlem
Globetrotters. Somehow he went from hoop-left
to hoop right and back over for a right handed
layup out from under two defenders in a way
that made him look like pure electricity. Just
a volt running through a wire or something.
Whoah. That was definitely the move of the
day. They really should have a "heisman" for
harlemish handling.

Half-time seems to serve about one purpose.
An open floor to place sandwich boards for
your favorite corporate muckety muck. "Tonite's
game of Dodgeball is sponsored by Midwest
Express and Piggly Wiggly, Klements sausages
and Senator Herb Kohl." No wait, there's more.
Dodge trucks too. The winner gets a brand new
Dodge car. Gee if that doesn't keep you from
buying Chevy or Ford, I don't know what will.
Or any car, for that matter, right?

Was the sax player also the house guitarist
for the halftime hooplas? He's got decent chops
as lead solos go. You probably know how I feel
about lead guitar. Somewhere between bored and
yawning, really.

OK, it's Verizon text messaging time. Get out
your verizon cellfones. (we'll allow other fones
so long as you let us keep saying verizon out
loud. Verizon) Call the verizon fone number on
the center-court teleprompt and whoever's the first
to hear the operator try to sell you fone service
will win a nifty verizon prize. Did I say verizon?

Verizon.

Wow, the crowd goes simply wild for snippets of
Ozzy's "Crazy Train." And Tim Thomas has 25 points.
The "guy" shooting halftime hoops as Bango the Bucks
mascot has a dirty little secret I should tell you
about. One even deeper than Victoria, of Victoria's
Secret fame.

You ready for this?

Bango the Bucks' "mascot boy" is a girl. She's 30
years old and she rocks! The woman behind me in
the bleachers does her hair. This was whispered
to me by her daughter. It turns out the woman's
only done her hair once, but the rest is apparently
true. I'm hoping to get more info soon when "mom"
gets back from buying brats and soda and stuff
because I'd just love to get an interview. I'll
be honest with you, interviewing a young woman who
can slam dunk perfectly with seeming ease after
doing a double backflip on a tilted trampoline
would be a much better journalistic coup than
scoring an exclusive with Jeremy Scahill, Noam
Chomsky OR Adam Shapiro right now.

OK, I figured out why the famous all-but-defunct
Celtics "fast break" went the way of the caveman,
the propeller airplane and the 3.37-per-hour
minimum wage.

It's the guy who obsesses over squeegying whichever
half of the court is empty at all times. Best not to
trample the help. OK, so if Moxy Fruvous is truthful,
I bet the squeegy guy used to have a splendid career
as something like Mayor of Denver or King of Spain.

"Now I vacuum the turf at skydome..."

So was it a Portland timeout or MKE when the
cheerleaders performed a rendition of Bachman
Turner Overdrive's "Takin' Care Of Business."
Besides "Crazy Train," this was clearly the only
other song to outdo "Carwash" in pop smash. First
verse and the chorus three times. My partner and
I showed off bigtime.

So Jennifer might be Bango's name. Follow up
that lead ASAP, ok?

Not only did I smell pot two or three times
throughout the game, but I went to bed last
nite and woke up this a.m. with that grungy
grimy gooey throat I tend to get whenever I
leave the east-coast casinos Foxwoods and
Mohegan Sun. I don't request they cut out
smoking if that's what it was, but I would
suggest they spend the millions needed to
ventilate the whole stadium properly.

Do it fast before people sue you for
second hand smoke damage. The only reason
Foxwoods didn't lose their shirt over that
one is they were making so many billions
per month they could afford the low millions
or high hundred thousands to settle out.

So I had a really good time at the Bucks
game last night. I want to thank the secret
donors who got me there. In my current
lifestyle, if I had the extra forty-bucks-
a-ticket in cash lying around I'd surely
spend it on something else like breakfast
here in the Hyatt or parafin for my bike
chain or something, not a stadium game. But
I did have a great time nonetheless. Methinks
the last time I saw a pro basketball game
was when I was 14 or 15; and something tells
me the last time I embraced Naismith HOF or
anything else basketball in a big way, there
was no such thing as a Bucks, or Porland OR
Orlando for that matter.

So yes, there's probably a lot I can say
bad against corporate sports, but one thing
I must point out about the Bucks besides
being owned and operated by one of the WORST
senators the US has ever seen, is that the
stadium donates leftover foods to the shelter
I help run on a fairly regular basis. That is
compassion at its finest. And besides, in the
offseason they tend to get acts such as Paul
McCartney and Bruce Springsteen.

Now that's rock and roll. But when will we
see someone like Manu Chao, Ozomatli, or Dave
Rovics there?

Soon and very soon please.

Shit!

I was gonna end this here and pay out the
damage on my breakfast, but I just met two guys
from my favorite sport. Yup. Soccer. The Force
are here to play the Wave this afternoon. So I
was schmoozing with them a little. They're cool.
And to top it off, I had enough schmoozing, so
I ended - saying "Beat Milwaukee, please. I'm
from CT," and one of them held me back saying,
"which part?" Turns out he's from Newtown. Ah, '
the Newtown Bee newspaper, and visions of WLAD
before it went easylistening danced in my head.
I told them about Italian soccer showing on
bigscreen tomorrow morning at the best coffeeshop
in town if they have time before their next road
game, and made my way back to the laptop and the
morning paper.

So hopefully now I can put this story to
"galley" and "blow this taco stand" before
I bump into some girl from a bus-and-truck
show, or some talkshow host or cheesecake
salesman.

homepage: homepage: http://espn.go.com/page2/s/thompson

could they be cool? 14.Dec.2002 22:55

Smokeless Hempster

And speaking of the Blazers, did anyone take notice of Stoudamire's quarter million donation to the schools? Very cool. If the whole team did that, I think a lot of people would come back over to the side of the Blazers. It's a good PR stunt because lots of people actually want to forgive. Patterson better give half a million 'cause it's fucked up what he did to that babysitter, but the rest of the team could do OK with just a quarter million. Heck, they could bail out quite a few school districts for the next few years, no sweat. THAT would be community and charity.

blame game 15.Dec.2002 01:17

Enji

commentators are so quick to blame tv, movies and video games for violence, but what about sports? fans go rabid and get drunk and hurt each other but do we ever hear the commentators bemoaning the negative effect sports have on our youth?