Doing nothing, as I did this morning at work, makes me more tired than busting my ass. That doesn’t bode well for this column, naturally. However, I will have some stuff about Taboo Tuesday in here, along with any other wrestling news that floats my boat (which isn’t much these days, both because nothing floats my boat and we don’t get a whole lot of wrestling news). There are Smackdown spoilers, but since I don’t give a f*ck about you, they’re only under their own section in the middle of the column, so don’t bitch and whine about me spoiling the show for you. The show comes pre-spoiled anyway. Whiny bitches.
(And Memo to Maria: Just ask BFM. He’ll say yes. Don’t give him hints like that ring and expect him to move on it. Guys don’t like being put under that kind of pressure.)
THE PIMP SECTION
Lucard does bloodsuckers and clam chowder. He never does explain, though, if there are such things as bloodsucking clams and, if so, what impact that might have on your chowder.
Misha has your game releases scouted out.
In the category of “Wrestling B Shows Named After Exothermic Phenomena”, Hollyric does Afterburn and West is in Heat.
Ditch does the Jap shit.
Toner is a hoss.
THE ANTI-SPYWARE SECTION
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 few months now.
(And as I understand it, there are some unscrupulous browser toolbar people trying to advertise here at the Pulse. Well, don’t click on that ad, whatever you do. We’ll still get the money from the impressions, and your system will stay safe.)
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 that 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 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 update the blocklist every couple of days. You will have problems getting to some sites unless you shut down Protowall temporarily, 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 Protowall 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 at various websites.
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.
Now that it’s moved to a release candidate status, I feel good in recommending Firefox as an alternative to IE. Go grab a copy and see what you’re missing.
And do NOT, repeat, do NOT, download Google Desktop Search. It leaves your system wide-open to all kinds of nasty invasion possibilities.
A TABOO TUESDAY PREVIEW
I blew off the Round Table out of exhaustion. However, it does benefit this column by adding a little wrestling news heft to it for a change. So, let me tell you what I think will happen tonight at Taboo Tuesday. Of course, since I’m writing this, nothing will come to pass since WWE hates me and wishes to foil my powers of prediction at every opportunity. Well, f*ck them. At least my Taboo Tuesday will be interesting. I’ll have a recap tomorrow as wrestling stuff gets into the Wednesday column for a change. Of course, there might be a delay in the Wednesday column considering I have to download the PPV first. Well, you get what you pay for, and what do you pay to access IP? Jack and shit.
Okay, here goes, match by match…
World Heavyweight Championship
Fans choose the challenger
Trip [c] vs. Shawn Michaels, Chris Benoit, or Edge
Challenger: Chris Benoit
Trip will get to retain the title here, and finally get the monkey of never having beaten Benoit one-on-one for the title off of his back, since it’s just about the only flaw he has left. And, dear heavens, we can’t have Trip have any flaws. Just pointing out that Trip has flaws can be fatal to your career in WWE. Just ask Pat Patterson.
World Tag Team Championship
Two that aren’t chosen to face HHH team up
La Resistance [c] vs. Michaels/Benoit, Edge/Benoit, or Michaels/Edge
La Res gets to retain the titles, but that’s because the entire match in placed into the service of the Edge Heel Turn. Edge completes his turn here, and has an insta-feud with Michaels because he’ll end up costing the duo the tag championship. That’s a nice old-school reason to begin a feud, and it should turn out to have some nice passable matches, especially at Survivor Series.
Aerobics Challenge, Lingerie Pillowfight, or Evening Gown Match
Fans choose the stipulation
Christy vs. Carmella
Match Prediction: Evening Gown Match
Who doesn’t want to see Carmella get stripped? Obviously Hemme takes this one because if she doesn’t, then WWE looks stupid in proclaiming her a better diva than a Playboy Playmate of the Year. But Carmella sticks around because she’s a full-fledged character.
Lead Pipe, Steel Chain, or Steel Chair
Fans choose weapon
Kane vs. Gene Snitsky
Weapon: Steel Chair
No matter what weapon is chosen, this match is going to be donkey’s-ass ugly. It’s going to be the piss break match for most people, except for those with nervous bladders who are going to go numerous times and those with bladders the size of said donkey’s ass who can drink a twelve-pack and not have their teeth swimming.
Hair vs. Hair, Losers is the Winner’s Servant, or Loser Wears a Dress
Fans choose the stipulation
Dinsmore vs. Bischoff
Stip: Hair versus Hair
Obviously the retard has to go over, and Bisch is game enough to go bald for a while. The look’s worked for the last two general managers of Smackdown (three if you count Heyman’s natural condition), so why not the GM of Raw?
Diva Battle Royal – Women’s Championship
Fans choose attire: school girl outfits, nurses, or maid outfits
Trish Stratus [c] vs. Jazz vs. Nidia vs. Gail Kim vs. Stacy vs. Molly vs. Victoria
Attire: French maid outfits
Stratus retains because Christ knows that they haven’t done anything with the women’s division lately and have absolutely zero clue on what to do with it. Trish is default champion, so therefore the belt gets to stay around her waist.
Fans choose the challenger
Chris Jericho [c] vs. the fat f*ck, Rhyno, DAVE, Shelton Benjamin, Yoshihiro Tajiri, Novocaine Helms, Jonathan Coachman, Chuck Palumbo, Rodney Mack, Maven, Christian, Mister Regal, Val Venis, Stevie Richards, or Tyson Tomko
Challenger: Hmmmmm, Christian or Batista, Batista or Christian…I’ll say Batista
If it is Batista, expect there to be a title change. I don’t know why, I’m just feeling it. Jericho’s done shit with the belt since he won it, and Edge is going to be f*cking around with Michaels, thus abandoning the “I never lost the strap” rationale that’s served so many classic feuds in such a good manner. If it’s Christian, expect some backfiring interference from Tomko with Jericho retaining and yet more of the Jericho/Christian feud that they pretty much tapped out.
Steel Cage, Submission, or Falls Count Anywhere Match
Fans choose stipulation
Randy Orton vs. Ric Flair
Stip: Steel Cage, duh
Flair’s gonna make the kid look like a million bucks and pull a 1.0 Muta blade job out of mothballs for the occasion. Orton will just have to follow his lead, which he is possibly capable of doing. Don’t expect a winner of a match here, but Orton goes over regardless of the stip.
That’s enough of that. Stay tuned for results.
JUST IN CASE YOU CARE, WHICH I DON’T
The eight Tough Enough finalists have been announced, and Big Johnson was nice enough to put them up at 1bullshit Junior. As for who they are, here’s a list:
John Meyer — Costa Mesa, California
Nick Mitchell – Magnolia, Texas
Mike Mizanin — Parma, Ohio (MTV Real World – Return to New York cast member)
Chris Nawrocki — Syosset, New York
Daniels Puder — Sunnyvale, California
Ryan Reeves — Las Vegas, Nevada
Daniel Rodimer — Tarpon Springs, Florida
Justice Smith — Torrance, California
I’ll root for the Polack. It seems the right thing to do.
AND SPEAKING OF SMACKDOWN…
Here’s some spoilers that I picked up from Da Meltz. All opinions are that of Meltz’s unnamed stringer, who somehow survived being in Rockford:
Carlito tried to hit on Torrie Wilson, who was introducing him. She wanted nothing to do with him, so of course, he spit an apple in her face. Should have rubbed a bannana in her hair.
Carlito b Rico
Teddy Long told Booker to team with Mysterio & RVD against Suzuki & Dupree & JBL in the main event. Booker didn’t want to be in a tag match, and told Teddy they must be mistaken since he hadn’t done his babyface turn yet.
Chavo Guerrero returned and he now loves the fans, and probably Uncle Eddie. Kidman came out, and of course, they got into it with Chavo cleaning the ring of him.
Heidenreich now has to come to the ring in a straight jacket because Paul E has picked up power and remembers it got Sabu over.
Heidenreich b Shannon Moore
Heidenreich challenged Undertaker to come out. Undertaker pinned him with a tombstone, and choke slammed Paul Heyman. I’m presuming htis was a dark match.
Wilson can’t believe what Carlito did. Evidently she never watches the show she performs on.
Teddy Long confronts Carlito about what happened in the night club where John Cena was attacked. Carlito said he doesn’t hang with thugs. Detective Teddy Long says he’s heard otherwise. Carlito asked to be read his Miranda rights.
Mark Jindrak b Eddie Guerrero. Kurt Angle gave Jindrak the ring bell and he put it on his chest. Guerrero came off with the frog splash, but got hurt by the bell and was pinned. Sounds like something Guerrero would have done.
Booker tells Mysterio and RVD to stay out of his way.
Booker confronts JBL saying he left Texas for New York. The ol Texas vs. New York rivalry, I see.
RVD & Mysterio & Booker b JBL & Dupree & Suzuki. Booker was still playing heel, but pinned JBL clean with an ax kick.
Oh, God, I’ve got to cover this show…you know, if not for one intransigent individual, I would have been working in Rockford now. Maybe I should count my blessings because I would have been obliged to have seen this one live.
And another one I didn’t have to see live was Raw, but that’s only because I’m not home now. But I’ll cover it for you anyway.
THE SHORT FORM
Gene Snitsky over Nick Dinsmore (Pinfall, side slam): Always nice to see a little retard-beating, so I enjoyed this immensely. I just wish that Snitsky could have continued all the way to euthanasia. Ending off the stupid pregnancy angle, beating up retards…are you sure that Snitsky isn’t a face? He sure is in my book.
My Beautiful and Beloved, Victoria, and Nidia over Trish Stratus, Gail Kim, and Molly Holly, Useless Women’s Match (Pinfall, Victoria pins Kim, Widow’s Peak): Just a pimp match for tonight, nothing more, nothing less. Although I’d be perfectly willing to rub down My Beautiful and Beloved’s knee until it feels better.
God Almighty and DAVE over Chris Jericho and Randy Orton (Submission, Jericho submits to Flair, Figure-Four): Damn good little tag match there. Too bad that it was only made to make certain that the WWE can maintain the fiction that Taboo Tuesday really was decided by the fans, who were “impressed” with the way Batista handled himself in the ring against Jericho and thus “voted” him into the IC strap match. Hell, I’m glad I picked Batista to be the opponent earlier today when I wrote my Taboo Tuesday stuff above. Of course, there was Flair in there doing his best to show how he’s going to carry Dorkboy (tm Randle), and KC Evers has a quickie about that:
After the Orton-Kimmel segment, I coulda swore I saw Batista standing next to Buddy Rogers.
Ouch. Fortunately, that was the wrong Nature Boy you saw.
Shelton Benjamin over (in order of elimination) Novocaine Helms, Yoshihiro Tajiri, Jonathan Coachman, Rhyno, and Christian, Six-Man Elimination Endorsement Match: Didn’t really get moving to any extent until it was Benjamin/Christian. I’d like to see that match on a normal PPV (as well as a good program between the two). Why don’t they do the obvious, since they need some filler? Have the fourteen losing contestants (in other words, everyone except Batista) participate in an over-the-top-rope battle royal to determine the number one contender for the IC strap? That way, everybody gets to join in the fun of Taboo Tuesday.
Edge over Our Lord and Savior and Shawn Michaels, Triple Threat Showoff Match (Pinfall, Edge pins Benoit, rollup): As good as you’d think it would be given the participants. As shitty as you’d think it would be given that they stuck to the same old Triple Threat formula. And as cynical as you’d think it’d be given the fact that Edge went over when he has no chance being in the match on Tuesday night.
I Am So Ashamed: Doing “What?” chants, chanting for the retard…am I going to have to go home and teach you people a lesson? Kansas or not, you seem to have forgotten that Chicago is MY town, and you will behave the way I want you to behave, not like that. You might feel safe now, but wait until I’m back in town. Then see how safe you are.
And that’s it for this puppy. Tomorrow, more about Taboo Tuesday and anything else I can find that interests me enough to write about it. Until then, remember that it’s two weeks from Election Day, and the nightmare of the Junta must end.