Monday, February 23, 2009

Blast From The Past

Everyone has a "ran into someone I used to fuck" story. Mine wasn't very exciting, but it just happened last week, so here it is.

"Grace," the one-night stand from three years ago, works for Playboy Magazine. She was so proud of it that she gave me her business card the one night we spent together. Last Tuesday I made my way to a theater downtown to see The Wrestler (very good film). It was the same theater that "Shelley" and I visited several times during that tumultuous relationship, so if I were going to run into someone I used to go out with, I thought it may be Shelley. I feared that it may be Shelley, I should say. I even had a flashback sitting in the theater because the seat I sat in was in the same position as the ones Shelley and I sat in to watch Rent. That was an emotional movie and an emotional night. So I had to concentrate hard on The Wrestler in order to avoid thinking about that. But anyway, the movie ended around 4P, and I made my way to a bus stop to go straight home. A minute after I got to the bus stop, I felt a woman walk near me, stop maybe six or seven feet away on my right side, and stare at me for like 10 seconds. I had my earbuds in as I listened to my iPod, so I wasn't paying very close attention, but when I felt that stare, I turned and looked in the general direction of the woman but not directly at her. It took a few seconds for her visage to come clear in my mind as someone I knew, but I wasn't totally sure it was Grace until I saw her back and noticed the Playboy logo on her jacket. At that point, I took out my earbuds and started thinking in my brain about what to say to her, or if I should say anything at all. She stood there smoking and not acknowledging me at all, and I walked all around her but never closer than a few feet. I really didn't know what to do. I had some things I wanted to tell her, but I didn't know if they were things I necessarily needed to say, or if she even wanted to hear them. Finally, I chickened out. My bus came and I decided to get on it and not say a word to her. I made sure I didn't look out the window at her as the bus pulled off, because that would have been the ultimate punk move--don't say a word, but then stare her down as I'm riding away and she can't say anything.

The next morning, I woke up thinking about Grace still, and I decided that running into her must have been some sign for me to tell her how I felt after 3 years. So I wrote her an e-mail. And I detailed the fact that I didn't communicate with her after our night together not because I was disappointed in the evening, but only because I started talking with the woman who is now my fiancee right after that night, and I didn't want to ruin what was happening by tempting myself chatting with a woman I fooled around with. It was important for me to tell Grace that she was great that night and that I was immature not explaining to her why I fell off the face of the earth. I knew that she didn't necessarily need the explanation, but I had wanted to get that off my chest all this time, and I was able to do it in that e-mail. A couple of hours later, Grace responded, saying that she was stunned by the letter and didn't know what to say. I told her that was fine, and thanks for at least acknowledging it, because I was afraid she might just laugh at the stupid little boy writing after 3 years and ignore it. We then chatted via IM for a while, as she let me know that she actually didn't recognize me at the bus stop, but was staring because she was "checking me out." Hey, she screwed me, so I guess she's attracted to my type. I told her that because my fiancee is devout to her religion, we had not had sex, so she's still the last person I have slept with. "You poor baby," Grace said. "3 years! I'm getting lightheaded just thinking about it." It turns out that Grace is in a relationship herself, a new profile pic of her and some black guy in glasses side by side as evidence. Instead of reacting with jealousy as I probably would have a few years ago, I actually said, "Aw." Being settled in my own personal life made me more mature as far as seeing exes with other men goes. Grace ended our chat by saying she was very happy now. I couldn't be happier for her. And, unlike my other exes, she was able to grant me some closure.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Super Bowl XLIII

Arizona vs. Pittsburgh (-6.5)

I've heard some media folks picking the Cardinals to win this game, and there's two reasons besides the obvious--Pittsburgh is much the better team--why this is ludicrous. One, these are the same guys who didn't give the Giants a snowball's chance last year against the undefeated Patriots. I really think that these people are so shortsighted that they can't look past last year, when a much bigger underdog pulled off the upset of a lifetime, and therefore they feel that they have to go with the Cards today because, well, they have a better chance than New York last year, right? One has nothing to do with the other, you idiots. Just because you (and me and everyone else) whiffed on last year, that doesn't mean you have to spin around this year and ignore why the Steelers are favorites and just blindly go with the Cards. Analyze the game, not the moment. And two, these are also the same people that didn't give the Cardinals a chance at every level of this year's playoffs. Not a one of them was picking the Cards to go to the Super Bowl, but now that they're in, all of a sudden now they look like the team to beat to a handful of people. Where were these guys when the Cards were outclassing the Falcons, outhustling the Panthers, and outlasting the Eagles? They were coming up with every reason under the sun why the Arizona Cardinals had no chance to go any further. My excuse for not picking the Cards to beat the Eagles is, simply, I can't pick Eagles games for my life. (I've heard that Donovan McNabb will be a Hall of Famer someday, and I think that's not only wrong but patronizing because I think he'd be voted in due to pity in regards to the sometimes unfair criticism he received from Philly fans and Rush Limbaugh and assorted other voices over the years. Just because he got called out in spots just because he was the black quarterback doesn't mean he wasn't woefully inconsistent throughout his career.) In any event, the analysis for Super Bowl Cuatro Tres, as Chad Johnson may call it, reads like this to me: It's the #4 offense for the regular season in Arizona vs. the #1 defense in Pittsburgh, and defense wins championships. I said that the winner of the Ravens-Steelers game would be champs, and I'm not wavering. I just cannot see the Cards, a team that got bent over and plowed like a faggot in jail several times in the regular season, all of a sudden getting it together and beating the Steelers in the Super Bowl. Going through the NFC playoffs? Sure. Beating the 12-4 Steelers, who went through statistically the hardest regular-season schedule ever? Not happening. The defenses got harder every step in the playoffs for Arizona, with the Eagles almost stealing the NFC title game, and now it culminates in the top defense, and I can't pick them to overcome that. As far as the spread goes, I'll use this bit of logic to go with the Steelers to cover: I've heard a lot of chatter about Pittsburgh QB Ben Roethlisberger's horrific performance in the Super Bowl three years ago at the end of his rookie year, a game the Steelers still managed to win over a similarly overmatched Seattle Seahawks squad. I believe his QB rating was in the twenties, and for comparison's sake, 80 is considered good and 100 is considered great. I think he's heard just about enough of that shit. I'm calling four TD passes in a Steelers rout.

My Pick: Pittsburgh 34-17