In Memoriam: Julia Child, who taught the world that French cuisine can be prepared by anyone. But Sakai would still beat her ass.
Hello, my name is Eric, and I am a Gay American…wait a second…that’s wrong. I’m not, not in either sense of the word unless I’m on my little happy pills. And get enough of them in me and I’ll probably pretend that it’s Fleet’s In.
And it’s another installment of “My Fucked-Up Life”. Somehow, the geniuses at Tyson decided that cattle prices were a little too high for them, so they decided to reduce their buying a bit. No work on day shift for Thursday, no work on night shift for Friday. Of course, we inspectors had to show up regardless. And stay there with nothing to do for eight hours. The Friday night experience ended up devolving into a three-hour meeting and watching the Chiefs game (I tried to get them into turning on the Olympic Opening Ceremonies, but was outvoted). In the meantime, though, the geniuses at Tyson decided that cattle prices were still low enough to buy something, but not much. So we ended up working on Saturday, with no work on Monday, but we still had to come in. However, we had a trick up our sleeve. We got our boss to agree that, if we wanted to, we on night shift could come in for work on day shift, since neither group was working. All of us decided to do that, thus freeing up the rest of the day to do things like, oh, shop. I was smart enough to bring a book on Monday as well as a metric assload of change for the vending machines, so that helped.
This little scheduling alteration impacted this column seriously. Not only was the not-so-lost-in-the-aether Smackdown Short Form put into a rush on Saturday morning, but I was all geared up to start cranking out because, as you know, there was a major on this weekend. Despite the fact that I could only watch Sunday’s action due to my schedule, and despite the fact that it’s the PGA and no one cares, not even golf fans, I could get a ream of material about it, right? Wrong. The leaders were teeing off on ten when I fell asleep from exhaustion, and I woke up in time to see Veej lifting the Wanamaker. I missed the last nine holes and the playoff, and you all know I love it when a major goes to a playoff. So I just stand there (after getting my ass up from the couch), kicking myself and bemoaning my fate. I didn’t want to go to sleep; after all, I had to be up early on Monday. And there goes the comments for the column, totally out the window. But Whistling Straits looked magnificent. Let’s hope that they get another major there damn soon.
In fact, Big Daddy was able to watch it and had some comments, so I’ll leave it to him:
OK, so I’m dying to hear about your take on the PGA Championship. My God, what an absolutely gorgeous and insanely designed course. Witht hat layout, Pete Dye officially makes the Marquis de Sade look like a piker. I’m watching and thinking, “Oh yeah, if I ever played here, this has a minimum score of 125 and a dozen lost balls written all over it.” I’m amazed that as much as they tore it up on days 1 and 2 that the winner still came in at -8; however, lot of the bite that the course took back on the weekend was due to the PGA officials who made pin placements described by the TVheads as “demonic.” Just a great round that even drew me away from some of the Olympic coverage (badminton ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™?ÃƒÆ’¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¢?? who knew the game you played drunk in the backyard at family gatherings would be such a brutal reflex-intensive game?)
And my theory on life was borne out on Sunday: never put your trust, money or hope on a guy with two first names. That being said, hereÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™?ÃƒÆ’¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¢??s your weekly SAT question:
1. Whistling Straits : Justin Leonard :: ____.
1. Hot dog : Cass Elliott
2. Vomit : Jon Bonham
3. Lazily hit ground ball : Bill Buckner
4. Peter North : Jenna Jameson
Actually, the old canard about Mama Cass is that she choked on a ham sandwich, but never you mind. I’ll go with D here, because Jenna’s always the correct answer to any question.
So, bereft of material, I did what any other columnist would do: popped something in the microwave (a meatball sandwich, to be exact) and turned on the Olympics. There, I was presented with the legalized kiddie porn known as women’s gymnastics. After mulling over how cute the Romanian team looked, and then realizing that they’ll turn into their Romanian mothers within a few years, my erection went down quickly and I decided to channel-troll. Finding nothing else on, I just ate my meatball sandwich and watched the teenagers prance around on equipment that wouldn’t be out of place in any good-quality leather bar in the world (especially the vaulting horse, which you can use not only for anal purposes, but also to pretend to play “The Great Escape” for that little Nazi/POW cheap thrill). Damn me for having already watched Wednesday Night Slapnuts and having nothing in reserve, and damn Cartoon Network for shitty Sunday night programming.
And the fun continued on Monday. After I got home from my eight hours of boredom, I had a message waiting for me from the local shrink. They’ll take me as a patient, but not until November. That’s great, huh? Well, I took the appointment anyway. Now I just have to shell out another $140 for Abilify to get me over until then. Why do you think I’m working all of this overtime, folks?
And it’s on to the rest of the stuff now…
THE PIMP SECTION
Personally, Lucard, I’d go with “dominatricies”, because it is the correct plural form.
Murtz has his SummerSlam views up. I’ll get mine up when I watch a little of the show and read the breakdowns. Should be in here somewhere.
The Mean is back, but only for a night. Hell, Morse, get your head out of the comics more often and make it permanent. We NEED The Mean, dammit!
Laflin takes on the gamers’ equivalent of how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.
Misha tries hard with what he’s given.
Angeloni complains about high game prices (and high gaming system prices). That’s why you should own a PC and a broadband connection, son (you’ve already got the first if you haven’t already noticed). Now let me fire up my copy of Chessmaster 10th Edition, for which I paid, oh, nothing…
Joe Reid has to follow me up as guest in Fernandez‘s column. Poor Joe. But he’s got the U2 track stuck like a perfect dismount.
JJ has his groove thing going like there’s no tomorrow.
I agree with Urciuolo: Veej has Player of the Year sewn up, especially the way he won the PGA, in a playoff against a world-class competitor like Justin. But if Tigger can take the two remaining WGC events and the Tour Championship, which he’s perfectly capable of doing, as well as make a splash at the Ryder Cup, it’s going to be a closer fight than people think.
I may not be in Chicago right now, but Kappauff is there covering what used to be known as Chicago ComiCon. Fuck you, Wizard Magazine.
THE ANTI-SPYWARE SECTION
I’ve been having some trouble lately with spyware, and I sort of wonder if it is due to 411mania. I’m not sure of this by any means, but it seems like these serious threats keep popping up on the ad-aware, stuff like Ebates and Top Moxie, etc. Stuff in the every category on there: processes, registry keys, files, folder, you name it. I’ve noticed that since I’ve all but stopped visiting 411 lately (mainly due to them having no one left since you guys bolted, heh) I haven’t been having all this trouble. – Regular Cabbageboy316
I’m not pointing any fingers…oh, yes, I am. Well, technically you are, CB, but it’s my column, so I’ll take the blame.
Remember, this all started because the slugs at Enigma Software dared to advertise their piece of shit SpyHunter at 411 (one of the reasons why I decided to leave, honestly). So I’m responding every single column with proper anti-spyware information. And guess what? People are actually taking this to heart. They’re asking me for help if they’re infested, or they’re writing me telling me that their browsing experience is less annoying thanks to the stuff I’ve been putting up here three times a week for a couple months now.
Big, big Kudos to the guys at the Spyware Warrior Forum for pointing out to everyone the extent of criminal activity participated in by Enigma Software, makers of the bane of advertising on this site, SpyHunter. Slimeballs extraordinare, aren’t they? And in case you need more info about what flaming bags of shit they are, try here. Suzi’s Blog has a great list of other flaming bags of shit that promote anti-spyware programs that are spyware themselves. Consult it if you have questions.
(On a side note, those SpyHunter ads started over at Reality News Online, and BFM, a contributor there, spotted them. He told the webmaster, gave him those links that I cited above, the webmaster read them, the blood drained out of his face, and he contacted his ad provider. No more ads for Enigma products on RNO, thank you. So guess what? If you provide the info, there are sites who will listen.)
One of the leading vectors for spyware is so-called free programs that contain this shit in order to “pay the bills”. No one deserves that kind of treatment. If you’ve got a question about whether or not a certain program contains spyware, head over here. It’s a nice alphabetized list of programs that do contain spyware and should be avoided at all costs.
Here’s a list of the programs you really need to help you get rid of menaces, and, more importantly, prevent them from occurring in the first place:
Spybot and AdAware. The ONLY two spyware removal tools to trust. Do NOT buy any spyware removal tools, because none of them work better than these two, and all of them except these two are suspect.
SpywareBlaster. Will nuke thousands of different potentially malicious ActiveX controls, and now has the ability to prevent a number of non-ActiveX methods of installing spyware for people who use Mozilla/Firefox.
SpywareGuard. From Javacool, like SpywareBlaster. It’s a real-time scanner for spyware. A decent first line of defense.
IE-SpyAd. Throws numerous ad-related URLs into IE’s Restricted Zone, where they won’t display or affect your system. Bookmark this one, since it’s the only one that doesn’t have an in-program update.
A few people have recommended also installing the Sun Java Virtual Machine, since it’s Windows’ buggy, half-assed implementation of the JVM that allows a lot of spyware to install (less so within the past month and a half than before). I’ve resisted putting it here because of a couple things: 1) The MS JVM was removed in XP SP1a due to the Sun court case and replaced with a Sun JVM, and I’m not sure how many people have actually patched. 2) The link above is an automatic download, and that does scare some people. Don’t worry, it’s perfectly safe. I wouldn’t have put it here if it wasn’t. But I STRONGLY recommend that you visit here and update your version of Java.
So many people have asked about a free anti-virus program that I’m also going to recommend AVG. Totally free, and works really, really well, as well as commercial anti-virus programs. Frequent database updates, good heuristic detection, everything you want in an anti-virus package.
Another program that I’d like to add here is a little tough to work with for noobs if it goes buggy (you need to know a little something about your Networking settings in order to debug if something should go wrong). Protowall is a supplement to your firewall or NAT system. It hooks directly into XP’s networking system to block any and all traffic that comes from URLs on a list maintained by the program (all protocols, not just TCP/UDP). It’s mainly designed for anti-P2P purposes (which will appeal to a great many of my readers), but it contains lists to block spyware and ads. Its blocklist can easily be updated using its supplementary program, Blocklist Manager. I have Protowall running and a Blocklist Manager icon on my desktop, and I use Blocklist Manager to upd
ate the blocklist every couple of days. You will have problems getting to some sites unless
you shut down Protowall temporar
ily, like ESPN or Sports Illustrated, but it does have a tray icon you can right-click and shut down in a few seconds. It’s the third layer of anti-ad material for me, with IE-SpyAd and AdSubtract running alongside it. Warning, though: it only works with XP. I’d recommend its predecessor, Peer Guardian, for other MS OSes, but it isn’t being developed anymore, and there were still bugs in it when development stopped. You can get Proto
wall and the Blocklist Manager (which will also work with Peer Guardian) at Bluetack’s site.
Of course, only download them from the links provided above. And only download those programs; don’t fall for the ads that are shown here.
With AdAware and Spybot, check for updates using their internal update function at least once a week. Run them at least once a week or whenever you think you might have problems. Remember, the new version of Spybot has browser protection capabilities, so have that run at startup and leave it running. Check for updates to SpywareBlaster once a week. It only needs to be run once initially in order to establish protection. Then, after it downloads updates, just click on the line that says “Enable Protection For All Unprotected Items” and kill it. It doesn’t need to be active. For IE-SpyAd, bookmark the site and check for updates twice a week, since it has no kind of internal updater. Run the Blocklist Manager every couple of days to make sure that you keep up on the latest banned URLs. Since all it does is add Registry entries, it doesn’t eat up anything.
If you’re having trouble with spyware or a browser hijacker, or think that you do, head over to the SpywareInfo Forums, where the pros there can help you diagnose and get rid of stuff. I was promoted to Full Helper status there and ended up joining ASAP, the Alliance of Security Analysis Professionals. Look for their symbol, which I’m not going to try to link to anymore because someone at the other end keeps munging it.
The Ravin’ Cajun asks me to recommend a good client-side spam filter for MS mail programs running under Windows. Now, this is something I don’t have experience with because my ISPs have always had good spam filtering, plus, I use Thunderbird, which handles the remainder quite nicely, thank you. Some readers wrote in and recommended SpamBayes, which is totally free and supposedly works very well, so I’ll add it on to the anti-annoyance list that we’re building up here. Said Ravin’ also states that when XP SP2 comes out, it’s a good idea to grab it. Yes, definitely. If you’re not running a firewall (and you should be), the one in SP2 is extremely robust and works quite well. Also, the built-in pop-up blocking on IE will be a wonderful addition. However, there are still contraindications about downloading it if you’re into P2P. Just wanted to warn you of that.
AND NOW ON TO SOME CURRENT WRESTLING NEWS, MOST NOTABLY SUMMERSLAM
SummerSlam has a rep of being second among majors only to WM (although I regard it as essentially tied with the other three majors in that position). This year’s did live up to a lot of the rep. There were some problems here and there, but all said, it turned out decently.
The trios opener was one of the better Dudley matches in recent memory. I chalk that up to the fact that they knew they were going over, so they gave a shit. They did the right thing: get out of the way and let the cruisers do their stuff. Everyone got their spots in, yet the flow was maintained. There wasn’t a dead spot in the match. Credit to everyone involved. This was also the only match I picked wrong during the Round Table, because I was certain that “creative” was swerving us about the Spike turn. In a sense, I’m happy they weren’t. That would have been the easy way out. But how long will it be before that turn is decided to be a swerve? It’ll happen, I assure you.
When Hardy blew open the news about needing surgery and being out for months, the Kane/Hardy match became a fait accompli. Kane had to win the match anyway to extend the angle, but it became absolutely negligible. After the relatively hot opener, it was a downer to watch. It did engender the best sign at the event, though: “Lita is a Dumas”. Great pun.
Skipped the Cena/Booker match. After all, we have four more of them to see before this issue’s decided.
The moment the Triple Threat went into formula, I gave up on it. I’m sick and tired of the same shit in any Triple Threat match. One guy gets eliminated, the other two work on each other for a while, the third guy comes in to break up a pin, the third guy settles in with one of the other two, lather, rinse, repeat. It’s boring. Give me a Three-Way Dance any day. But credit to Batista for coming out of this looking pretty good. The guy’s growing as a wrestler in front of our eyes now that he’s fully recovered from that injury, and he’s working hard at it. So good for him.
The Angle/Guerrero match proved one thing that I’ve had on my mind for a long time: Eddy Guerrero is one of the most underrated mat wrestlers of our time. The guy really is a complete package. To be able to keep up with someone of Angle’s caliber is a definite accomplishment. Bravo to Eddy, and congrats to Angle on the win. This angle deserves to continue, and that was the best way to do it.
I was so, so happy with the Toronto crowd for turning on the retard. As everyone knows, I’ve been against the angle from the start (and I’ve explained why in detail to some people that I respect). Now the audience is finally sick of it too. Like with Flex, like with Wife-Beater, so it goes with Retard as well. You people should listen to me more often when I say that I hate something, and start hating it immediately as well. That way, you can’t be considered a bandwagon-jumper. But always remember that I drive that wagon.
Skipped the whole dodgeball mess. And I also ended up skipping the whole UT/High-Quality Speaker Boy bullshit as well. I derive more enjoyment from watching the spider that’s crawling up my wall right now than from bullshit like this.
Benoit/Orton closed off the whole thing nicely, thank you. Lots of carrying on the part of Our Lord and Savior, but Orton responded well and was able to look strong enough to make certain that the victory could be perceived as well-earned. Now it’s all up to him. Will his reign be perceived as too much, too soon, or as a success? That’s for time and the imbecilic bookers to decide.
No real news out there, but just one more small item, I think, since it tickles my fancy…
For those of you still holding out hope of seeing the over-‘roided mushmouth ever again on WWE TV, Milord had some bad news for you over at 1bullshit Junior: WWE has failed to renew any of Big Sump Pump’s trademarks. The news he got is that Steiner was bought out of his contract and released without any strings attached. So our long national nightmare, at least in this sense, is over. Oh, happy day for all of us. We no longer have to witness anything dealing with that waste of perfectly good Dianabol ever again. Of course, Milord has to throw in his opinion on this:
I still think they totally dropped the ball with him.
Milord is a tasteless suck-ass, so making up excuses for the mutual failure with Steiner isn’t any surprise. But if you’re a fan of his, what’s your excuse? I’ll just write all of you off as tasteless suck-asses as well and close this sordid little chapter of wrestling history. Go see him at an indy near you if you’re in that boat, and let me bask in the glow of Sump Pump-free WWE programming.
Like, for instance, Raw. Let’s see how they followed up the second-biggest PPV of the year, shall we?
THE SHORT FORM
Rhyno over Sylvain Grenier, Title Qualification Match (Pinfall, Goar Goar Goar): All I can say is that it was better than you’d expect considering the participants. Of course, that isn’t saying much. But KC Evers, no relation, maybe, has a little bit more to say: Seriously, Conway’s starting to look like Barry Horowitz way too damn much. Agreed, but he needs the robe with the handprint on the back to complete the resemblance.
Victoria Ferrari (tm KC Evers, no relation, maybe) over Gail Kim (Pinfall, Widow’s Peak): I like the Widow’s Peak variation without the set-up. Makes it look as devastating as, say, the Diamond Cutter, where the unexpected factor sold the move. Of course, no amount of selling can disguise Stevie in drag, not when Ross and Lawler are trying to sell the identity of this “mysterious woman” and fans are yelling “Steven Richards!” right into the ringside camera mic.
Edge over Kane, Intercontinental Title Match (Pinfall, spear): Nothing really to say about this one. It was yet another Angle Enhancement Match (especially with the Hardy-ference), and you know how I hate those. So I’ll just move on.
Chris Jericho over Dave Batista (DQ, Naitcha-ference): Good match, yet another in a series that are showing the growth of DAVE from a big guy into an all-around large wrestler (in other words, he’s transmogrifying from, say, Hogan into, oh, Kane back when Kane really cared). But who exactly are they trying to turn tweener? Jericho, Edge, or both? If it’s the last, that’ll make for some interesting booking.
Randy Orton over Our Lord and Savior, World Title Match (Pinfall, RKO): And so it finally happened. After a great match, definitely comparable to last night (thanks again mostly to Benoit), came the beatdown and fracturing of Evolution that we’ve all expected for months. Or is it really a break-up? Trip marking his turf with Orton’s blood doesn’t necessarily mean that Orton’s out of Evolution, you know. Orton, being a former Marine (albeit not a very good one), knows the importance of a rank structure in an organization. Belt or not belt, Trip is the dog with the big nuts in Evolution, and if it takes a beatdown to show that, and to rid Orton of any pesky ego tendencies, so be it. I’d prefer Orton stay as a heel. I don’t think he’s got the skills to go face and pull it off just yet. Keeping him in Evolution is the shortest path to that result.
(And Memo to Murtz: Don’t print Milord’s asinine opinions along with the article. Do more than cut and paste, do a little judicious editing so that his imbecilic rantings don’t appear under your byline (although he’s right about Orton staying heel). Remember, I threatened Ashish with anal rape by horny soldiers in Iraq for doing the same thing.)
Let The Celebrations Begin: Well, Orton carried himself off well in his first promo as champ. A bit generic at times, but even his harshest critics, and I’ve been one of them on occasion, have never denied his promo ability. He’ll have to be carried for a while, but it might make a nice diversion. Good job, Randall. The Ravin’ Cajun doth agreeth:
Hmm… someone’s been reading up on his Dwayne Johnson literature. I’m definitely sensing shades of the Rock (not Flex, ROCK) here. The delivery is far from the original, but the material is getting there. Maybe the boy has some hope.
Good model to develop a heel champion around, I have to admit. As long as Orton shows that he’s got his own unique way of doing things, it’s cool. But don’t totally rip off the original.
And Carmela Stays Alive: Good work, audience, getting her through to the next round. Normally, I don’t talk about the Diva Search, since it’s utterly ridiculous, but with all the talk of Carmela blowing off SummerSlam and incorporating her supposed shoot comments into the whole contest (and now I’m becoming skeptical about this situation due to the fact that they used it heavily on Raw, and therefore it must be a work to generate some “controversy” and provide an equally controversial figure who manages to survive for a long time despite drawbacks, ala Omarosa), there’s only one logical response: have her win it all. Let’s see what a reluctant diva can bring to Raw to disrupt the rest of the women. It’ll be fun.
California Dreamin’: So California won’t allow gay marriages, but they will allow bestiality marriages. And I’m talking on the part of Kane here.
And so will tomorrow’s Pulse. Wait until then for more from me. Out.