Brandon’s Best (and worst) of 2021

Brandon’s Best (and worst) of 2021

Let’s just call this what it is, a dedication to suck. 2021 felt like a slow morphine drip of mediocrity, or better, 2021 was a terrible sitcom. And by that I mean, nothing really changed. The episode ended and everything just reverted back to what it was before the episode started. Nothing got better. Joe Biden is just folksy Donald Trump. Social media continues to melt brains. Social change continues to feel like it’s going in the wrong direction.

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It’s Time To Admit that “A Christmas Story” Is Trash

Nostalgia has always been a mechanism by which people selectively remember history. Nostalgia is a form of currency. Nostalgia is the only reason Dane Cook ever existed. Remember Dane Cook? Remembering Dane Cook is a form of nostalgia.

No other holiday traffics in nostalgia quite like Christmas. And no Christmas nostalgia is complete without being forced to watch “A Christmas Story” every year.

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The Hot Stove League is Cold

Generally during this time of year Major League Baseball fans such as I mull over their favorite team’s impending moves for the upcoming season. We’ll sit around the metaphorical stove and keep ourselves warm with loads of firewood, black coffee and baseball chatter. But right now, it’s quiet… too quiet.

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Diamonds Are Forever (or) The Third Annual Fancy Boys Club National Basketball Association Preview Show

Diamonds Are Forever (or) The Third Annual Fancy Boys Club National Basketball Association Preview Show

Basketball was invented by God as a means to give giants something to do beyond losing fights via slingshot. From those early days, it evolved into a use for peach baskets once all the peaches had been consumed. The bigwigs at the ladder factory kept the bottom of the baskets intact for decades, citing a need to keep the game “pure, beautiful, and slower than a tortoise with his hands tied up.” That phrase doesn’t make much sense to me either, but what was once a boring, often cumbersome sport to watch has blossomed into one of the great games on this planet. The NBA, National Basketball Association for long, began seventy five years ago as the Toronto Huskies hosted the New York Knickerbockers, losing 66-68. Basketball then isn’t close to what it is now. Baseball added the curveball well over a century ago. Football did the same with the forward pass. But basketball’s true genesis of the modern, perfected sport didn’t come until just 60 years ago when the three-point arc was added in the ABA. It would be 18 years before the NBA officially adopted it and decades more before it altered the game. Now the David sons (part of me will have you laugh at that) can truly be equal with the Goliaths. And here we are, in the amber of the moment, and the damn Bucks are the reigning champions.

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The Last Frontier Needs Direction

What Alaska lacks is certainly not scenery. You can’t swing an Ulu knife around your head without seeing some sort of spectacular scenery. What it needs is direction, as in signage.

Sign Issue #1 – Directional Signage

Anchorage AK (pronounced by locals as “InkRidge”) is effectively Rockford IL (pronounced by locals as “Rockford”). Rockford has its special places, but so does Anchorage. However, Rockford has highways that actually connect to one another without the ‘aid’ of stoplights and has signage announcing said departure from one highway to another. Anchorage? A single highway rolls into another single highway, both running north-south. Does it make sense? Well, no. AK 1 aka “The Seward Highway” runs from Seward north to Anchorage. It goes from a two-lane 55 MPH road (it’s a coastal highway in an area where earthquakes are a given so this makes sense) to a 6-lane 65 MPH highway to a 4-lane “highway” with stoplights. The “C-word” (they do pronounce it Sue-word but I was calling it C-word because I’m a self-entertaining idiot) then runs its course by veering west to the Glenn Highway. There’s a sign indicating the Glenn Highway is coming up but it’s just labeled as “Glenn Highway” not “Glenn Highway next right” – which it wouldn’t be the next one – or “Glenn Highway exit 6th Avenue” – which in Anchorage it is 6th Avenue, then turns into the Glenn Highway once north of Anchorage.
Does this make any sense? No.

No kidding, this was a sign on a trail
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FBC 2021 NFL Preview: NFC West

FBC 2021 NFL Preview: NFC West

Every year, I start these previews with the best of intentions. To talk some shit, have some fun, and preview the start of the football season. But by the time I hit the end every year, I want nothing more than to jump into a time machine and beat my own ass for thinking this is a good idea. The end is just me hoping i’m not reusing insults and puns and whatnot.

After this, i’m taking a few days off to not stare at my laptop. Then that will last about a day. Next week, i’m going to be bringing your my division picks, awards candidates, Super bowl pick, and what not. The week after that, i’ll drop my first Power Rankings, which is always going to be a little more sad when I don’t have Adam Gase to make fun of. Additionally, next week, over on Football Absurdity, i’m going to drop my first gambling article of the season, going over every team’s Super Bowl odds. After that, i’ll do a weekly column every Thursday over there an talk about my favorite bets of the gambling week.

That’s what you do when you truly, deeply hate something. You double down and do even more of it! Now let’s check otu the NFC West!

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FBC 2021 NFL Preview: AFC West

FBC 2021 NFL Preview: AFC West

Welcome to the AFC West, which is ruled by one team until their quarterback leaves. Outside of the AFC East, this might be the most one sided division in the NFL. In one corner, you have the back to back AFC Champions. In the other three corners, you have a bunch of Barry Horowitz’s that are stepping in buckets and accidentally lighting themselves on fire and stabbing their own players in the lung.

The division is entertaining at the top end, because two of the teams have good quarterbacks. Two of the teams have rusty dildos playing the most important position in football. Those two teams aren’t entertaining. Alright, the week is almost over, lets get through this together. Welcome to the AFC West.

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FBC 2021 NFL Preview: AFC South

FBC 2021 NFL Preview: AFC South

Well, damnit. I knew i’d inevitably have to do it. It’s a feeling of existential dread. I keep looking away from my computer. I keep looking for something else to do. I take the dogs for a walk. I wash some dishes. But I have to return to this computer. This sucks. This is so stupid.

I really do not want to have to write about the AFC South.

The AFC South is the sad steamed vegetable on the dinner plate. It is Creed in the era of Limp BIzkit. It is Crocs as a fashion statement. It exists to fill a void. It exists because it has to. It joylessly does it’s job and is only enjoyed by the type of people who keep TGI Fridays in business. It’s a combination of both the dumpiest and least interesting places on earth. The fact that these teams aren’t all just forced to play eachother every Wednesday morning instead of wasting anybodies weekend truly feels like a waste. Fuck it. Let’s just get into it.

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Guardians Of The Cuyahoga

Guardians Of The Cuyahoga

Yesterday, the decision was announced that the Cleveland Indians would be changing their name to the Cleveland Guardians. Because the internet is a place of calm and reasoned discourse, this decision was lauded as a celebration of progress and then people went back to being excited about the start of the Olympics.

No, wait. The World Wide Web is a goddamned trash fire and people lost their fucking minds over something they had never previously cared about.

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Good Girl

In Loveland, Colorado on July 7, 2021, it ranged from the mid 60’s to the high 80’s with a blue sky sporadically dotted with white clouds. It was a perfectly beautiful day, but not an ordinary one.

Honey my Foxfire Red Lab and I walked that day – a lot. She didn’t want to go back inside. 5AM-5:30AM we saw more than I’d expect from the wild and domesticated kingdom. Baby bunnies played in the grass in front of us. A large raccoon came out of the bushes, sat down and watch us walk. Her current best buddy, Jaxson the cinnamon lab, came strolling by with his human pal Bridgette and did a quick nuzzle. The birds, most of them, came out in force. A great horned owl swooped down right in front of her followed by a white pelican. Mallards swam toward her. Swallows dove in and out, and a lone cardinal played its song.

No geese though. Very unusual for a typical morning, but not so unusual for they knew – she hated geese. What else did she hate? Fireworks but only if she saw them as she seemed to think we were under attack. Cats, but cats hate pretty much everything. People moving without moving their feet – like kids on scooters or skateboards and people coasting on their bikes. She once took a kid right off his scooter. Didn’t hurt him, just knocked him off like a safety taking a wide receiver out from under his feet.

This photo is tattooed onto my right shoulder.
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