Avenging Springy the Springfield Spring

Don’t mind the title. My contract says I need to included at least one random reference in every blog post. Now, on to the show

As I am typing this, The Bella Conference Center in Copenhagen, Denmark is filled with anticipation. Delegations from Madrid, Chicago, Tokyo, and Rio are in the process of trying to woo IOC board member into awarding their city the 2016 Summer Olympic Games. The cities have pulled out all the stops by bringing some big names into the ring with them: Oprah, Obama, Pele, Ronaldo, and many more.

Going into today, Chicago has been named the odds on favorite, with Rio being a close second. Experts say Madrid is too close to London (Host of the 2012 games), and Toyko is too close to Beijing (Host of the 2008 games). 2016 will mark 20 years since the last Summer games in North America (Atlanta), but recent public polls show that only 45% of Chicago residents want the games to come to their city. Rio’s two biggest strengths are that 90% of their residents want the games and there have never been an Olympic Games held in South America. Regardless, both cities will be attractive to American Broadcasters.

Shortly after a winner is announced in Copenhagen, American Broadcasters will start bidding for the rights to air the 2014 Winter Games (Sochi, Russia. Not very attractive) and 2016 Summer Games (Very attractive, especially if Chicago or Rio wins). The last bidding took place in 2003 when NBC won the right to air the 2010 and 2012 games. At the time of the bid, neither location had been selected. That year, NBC wound up paying $820 Million for the 2010 Games (later awarded to Vancouver) and $1.18 BILLION for the 2012 Games (later awarded to London).

NBC and Fox are expected to bid for these games, however, the dark horse, and maybe even the favorite depending on who you ask, is ESPN. The evil empire has incredibly deep pockets due to fact they collect subscription fees on top of ad revenue. (almost $5/mo per subscriber between all their networks, so we are talking over $400MM/mo before ad revenue) NBC and Fox don’t have such luxuries. With a local Olympics the rights fee will be ludicrously high. But on the other hand, Rio is only one hour ahead of NY, so that also works for the American public.

Needless to say, I am very excited today. And this doesn’t even factor in the Comcast/NBC rumors that have been floating around… Coverage starts on Universal Sports at 10:00AM ET

UPDATE: Chicago was eliminated in the first vote. Apparently this was a concern from the beginning. The IOC members tend to vote for their home continent in the first round regardless of who they think have a better bid. The final decision is between Madrid (Home of former IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch) and Rio.

UPDATE TWO: RIO WINS!

That is so meta.

Welcome to the most random blog entry to ever grace Covering the Spread:

Within imageboards such as 4chan, a special status has been afforded the character of Milhouse Van Houten from The Simpsons. Following an online campaign to gain Milhouse meme-status (an activity known as “forcing a meme”), it became a common occurrence for imageboard users to exclaim that Milhouse is “not a meme” whenever someone professed otherwise. This exclamation became so common that eventually the term “Milhouse is not a meme” itself became a meme. Users have jokingly telescoped this concept out further such that “Milhouse is not a meme is a meme” has also arguably become a meme. The process could potentially be extended ad infinitum, however to date “Milhouse is not a meme is a meme is also a meme” is not a meme.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metameme

AST Dew Tour Photo Essay

All Summer long I have been going to the AST Dew Tour for work. We made stops in Baltimore, Cleveland, Portland (which I missed due to the Olympics), SLC, & Orlando. For those who care, I helped coordinate the International Feed of the event. While the show aired on NBC, it was simultaneously airing on Eurosport and Fox Sports Australia. I helped ensure that they had everthing they needed; Sat. Coordinates, VOD Bonus Material, etc.

That boring stuff being said, here is a brief photo essay of the final stop of the 2008 tour:

BMX Dirt is one of my favorite events. The hotel I stayed at is back right. That is a commute I could learn to love. Not to mention you can go home to take a shize.

Here is the arena setup from the nose bleeds. It didn’t take long to figure out why this section was called the “O-Zone”

Our NBC home away from home. If you call the production manager’s office in NY, the phone rings here. I love how that works.

See Jack’s Production Trailer, straight out of an Ikea catalog.

Production Truck 5 minutes before we are on air. Shockingly also 5 minutes before all hell breaks loose.

I’m not much of an FMX fan anymore, but it is very photogenic…Did I fuck up here?

http://picasaweb.google.com/s/c/bin/slideshow.swf

What Happens in Vegas

Doesn’t always stay in Vegas.

This story starts on Thursday February 28th. But before I get started, I just want you loyal readers, yes, all 10 of you (Hi Mom & Dad), this is probably going to be a very boring story, so I won’t be mad if you skip ahead to the funny parts, they will be clearly marked. The purpose of this tale is to keep people informed. And to prove I do stuff on these business trips.

So Thursday we had a big NBCSports.com meeting at 30 Rock. I was in charge of assembling and running PowerPoint presentation that would be shown to the 80-some-odd people in attendance, Ebersol included. Going into the day I was somewhere on the bridge spanning the chasm of supremely confident and nervousness. Thankfully I had nothing to fear and the day worked perfectly.

Immediately following the meeting I hopped in a cab and headed to JFK and en un dos por tres, which in Spanish translates to something along the lines of likety split, I was in Vegas. Now the last time I was in Vegas I was about 13, so you can imagine it was a little different this time. I checked into my room and headed over to the National Heads-Up Poker Pairings Party which was held at Pure Nightclub at Caesar’s Palace. The party lasted till 2am (aka 5am et), and somehow I managed to make it through the whole night. For those that don’t know, the NHUPC is a march madness type poker tournament. It is also the most watched poker show in the country.

Friday morning I got to the set at 9:30 and I helped out with the live blog of the event. I created the brackets and helped come up with headlines. Taping ended at 10 so I took a walk down the strip and caught the fountain show at the Bellagio. Bellissima. I was excited for Saturday morning since Syracuse was playing and I could watch them at 9:00AM, but as expected Lucas found me at 8:45 and informed me that he had 2 minutes to explain his job to me because he was going to be doing something else. He prefaced the learning session by saying that this was going to be a tedious, thankless job, which was one of the most important on site. Inspirational. In short, the NHUPC is taped show. There are 25 cameras shooting at a time, recording onto one hour long video tapes. I was in charge of making sure all the cameras had video tapes to record on at all times. This required me to label the tapes (each tape got five stickers, and none of the labels were printed ahead of time), deliver the tapes to the truck, get the tapes that had been used, barcode them, process them into the system, and package the tapes up to be shipped back to NY. Each set of tapes were assigned a group number so that the producer would know what was taped when. I took over when the truck had group 10. So lets see what the first few hours of my day was like:
9:00 – Learn the ropes of tape stock.
9:05 – Lesson over. Left to my own means.
10:30 – Finish labeling group 15 tapes (11-13 were done previously)
10:45 – Taping begins. Start labeling group 16
11:15 – Bring group 11 to truck
11:40 – Finish labeling group 16
11:45 – Tape change
11:48 – Pick-up used tapes. Start barcoding and processing
12:15 – Bring group 12 to truck
12:30 – Finish barcoding. Start labeling group 17
12:45 – Tape change
12:48 – Pick-up used tapes. Start barcoding and processing
1:15 – Bring group 13 to truck
1:30 – Finish barcoding. Finish labeling group 17
1:45 – Tape change

After Saturday was done we had used the group 20 tapes. I was originally going home Sunday morning, but they asked me to stay longer to help with the production. I stayed and it was a pretty good experience. Sunday was much of the same, except for the fact we ran out of tapes halfway through. We started scrounging around the entire city and even took some tape stock from the NASCAR race in town. After two straight 9A-12P days I was exhausted.

****FUNNY PART****
Since I was working with the tape stock Saturday and Sunday I didn’t get to help with the blog much, but after Andy Bloch derailed the Cinderella run of Orel Hershiser (yes, that Orel Hershiser) I came up with the perfect headline, sadly it was rejected:

Bloch Turns Down Orel

****End Funny Part****

The worst part was that I was following the Live Updates of the Syracuse game online while working and the internet went down right in the midst of Syracuse’s epic collapse. F it I don’t even want to talk about it.

Things you should take away from this blog:
1. Watching poker without hole cards sucks.
2. One day I need to go back to Vegas to enjoy it
3. When you don’t know how to end a boring blog make a list of random points to learn the readers
4. Syracuse is NIT bound. Fuckers.
5. The world is a vampire.
6. Greatest site I have discovered in some time: Garfield Minus Garfield

Housekeeping

I have been away from the blog for sometime now but that was in because the Preakness was coming up and I figured that would be worth the wait. Things happened and it was a good time, but it could have been better. Read about it below.

In other news the License Plate contest is shaping up quite nicely:
1) Nick: 36
2) Amanda: 29
3) Tara: 27
However, Tara does have Alaska AND Hawaii, thats gotta count for something with the bookies.

Work starts tomorrow so my 10:00 bedtime kicks in tonight. Sweet deal.
I won’t be able to chat on AIM much, but send me emails at my google account so we can chat all day.

United 93

While I sit here trying to figure out how to respectfully write this post, I couldn’t help but feel the same as I did when I walked out of the theater only a few minutes ago. As the house lights started to come back some guy in the back tried to get a slow clap applause going, but the 30 person audience consisting of 90% elderly couples, Rachel and yours truly would have none of it. As I walked down the aisle I tried to catch glimpses of other peoples faces to see what they thought of the film, but like myself, everyone was mostly stone faced.

The hard part about this, is that I feel like it is sacrilegious to say anything bad about this picture. I’m not saying it was a bad movie, but on the other hand, it certainly wasn’t a tremendous picture either. I am glad I went to see it though.

For those of you who don’t know, United 93 is in essence a real-time account of what happened on that fateful day. It is a constant reminder of those events that caused misery for so many people. Throughout the movie you are brought face to face with harrowing images which remind you of the magnitude of the event.

Imagine you are on a roller coaster. You get around the corner from the station and start the long uphill climb. You know what is going to happen once you get to the top, the only problem being that it takes an hour and 45 minutes to get to the top. Oh yea, I forgot to mention, there is this box in front of you with the red light on it. Every now and again the red light starts blinking and on the 15th blink an automated arm with a boxing glove pops out and punches you in the stomach. The coaster hits the top and next thing you know your pulling back into the station.

Every single person in that theatre knows exactly what is going to happen in the movie. But still I had this feeling in my gut that the plane would be stuck on the runway for another 30 minutes before takeoff and then later, at the end, I thought the plane would be righted by the passengers and fly away from a near certain doom.

In the movie there were a lot of people who played themselves, including the director of the FAA. This added a dimension to the film, which was good and bad. While watching the movie there was a feeling that these were all everyday people, which made you more sympathetic to their situation. It was pretty easy to ignore the bad acting and the consistent stuttering.

You know, I went to see this movie because I felt it was important to tell the story of that day. It is pointless to not talk about it, these stories need to be told. Bad things are always going to happen, it is important to learn from them. I remember when I first heard about the planes hitting the towers. I joked about it and laughed it off. I even said: “At least now we will have something to put in our senior video.” It wasn’t until I was pulled out of class and saw my mom running up and down the hallway frantically that I realized what was actually transpiring. And you know what, the movie showed that most adults felt the same way. Not until the images were shown on CNN did people start to understand the magnitude of what was transpiring.

People say its awful that some people are making money off of 9-11. But guess what, this is America, unless the only place you go for news is your family pow-wow in front of the fire, someone is making money off of everything. The internet, driven by profit. History Channel, they want to make a profit too. Even “free” websites like my crappy geocities site. Yahoo is still making money off of it. Why do you think the ads pop up on the right hand side.

It may not have been the most action-packed, thrill-ride of a movie, but the story deserved to be told. This movie showed the heroics of a few; and the ineptitude of many.

22 Days and counting

I’ve been doing this whole blogging thing for about a month now, and let me tell you, it is enjoyable. I look for pretty much anything I can write about and hopefully entertain my reading public with. We always felt back home that everything we thought was so funny, wouldn’t be funny to anyone.

We started to create websites and at first they were only to entertain ourselves. And if we really wanted to sound sappy, we could also say they were made so that we can look back at these years and see what great times we had.

Then a funny thing happened. As we began to tell more people about the site, we found out that our adventure were pretty funny to other people. Shut up, I know what you’re thinking. So what if two of my biggest fans are my mom and dad. A fan is a fan.

So yea this is a cheesy update, but to everyone out there, Thanks.

I heard a rumor that only Blogger members were allowed to comment on this site, so I fixed it.
Feel free to leave comments, I’d love to know what you think.
Until next time, stay classy.

Come Ye of Little Faith

Well it took almost four years, but I finally went out on a Thursday night like the rest of the college kids across the nation. The occasion, Todd’s birthday bash. Now the first thing you have to understand is that I go to bed before most senior citizens on school nights. For instance I stayed up until 12:15 one night and as I was shutting down my computer I was greeted with about six “what are you still doing up????!!!!” messages. No joke. But anyway.

The night started pretty harmless, a little softball at 9:00. I heard a rumor that I hit two home runs. Did I mention I can only play with one hand since my left wrist is still technically broken. After the game I went to grab a smoothie with Tara and Karen and then we sat down to watch TMNT. Todd called at 11:30 saying that they were heading out so I reluctantly left the turtles to join them.

We went to the Alumni Club and it was a great time. The better part of the story is that “Party Nick” made a rare appearance. It’s not that he doesn’t exist, “Party Nick” merely lies dormant under the superior facade of “emo/socially inept Nick.” I still claim however that I am not emo, but that is the easiest way to find an emo kid, they are all self-loathers. Now I know the question everyone must be asking: “How can I enjoy the presence of “Party Nick?”” It is simple really, just follow this checklist:

1) No Picciniches: There is a direct relationship between the number of Picciniches in a room and the multiplication factor of our social ineptitude. I realize that I am bad alone, and I’m sorry, can’t help it. But when we are together it gets ugly. (Point in Case: Jackie’s house)

2) Not the wheel: I hate feeling like the third-, fifth-, seventh-(and so on)-wheel. I don’t think I am alone here so I am not going to try to defend this point.

3) Comfort factor: I have to feel comfortable with the group I am with. If there are to many people I don’t know, I become a reverse shrinky-dink. A nice group of four, six or eight people is a good number, especially if I know most of them.

4) Wind Me Up: I’m not much of a self-starter. Like that little dog that does backflips, get me started and I can keep going until I get too fatigued.

5) Chameleon: I like larger areas of public gathering. Yes, I know this is a little contradictory to point number three, but stay with me. The better I can blend in with the rest of the people, the more open I will be.

This post is going nowhere fast so I’m just going to quit before it gets painful. Yea, I know it’s not one of my better works, but it was worth mentioning. Until next time, Seacreast out.