Thursday, July 26, 2007

Le Tour

I am sure some the Stay Classy faithful are wondering, "Where's all the posts about the Tour this year?" Most of you folks know that the Tour is my favorite sporting event of the year, with the exception of a Rose Bowl here and there, the Tour is pretty much it for me. I was excited about the Tour this year early on, Basso was riding for Team Discovery and Discovery was rolling deep. Shortly before the race Basso was pulled from the race for doping allegations. Well shit. Ok, who else is out there. I have never liked Alexandre Vinokourev, but I was happy to see him back in the race this year, he's a very strong classic rider, and a hell of a climber. He pulled in one hell of a TT in Stage 13, annihilating the field by 2 00 minutes. He won that race with a combined 50 stitches in his knees from a fall in an earlier stage. What happens the next day? He gets pulled from the race for doping allegations.
That leaves the race for Michael Rasmussen to win. Two years ago Rasmussen gave Lance a serious run for his money in mountains, and it was his first Tour. Plus he used to be a World Champion mountain biker, obviously I liked him a lot. Especially yesterday when he won the most competitive stage in the Tour. It was the last stage of the Pyrenees, and Rasmussen was being constantly attacked by the two Discovery teammates Levi Leipheimer and Alberto Cantador for the last 6 miles of the climb. Rasmussen did not falter, he pulled away from the attack and won the stage by 0 20. In the last mile of the climb to the finish he transformed into a super-human climbing machine, and I thought to myself, "Wow, he's got to be doping".... but I left it at that and fell asleep. And what do I find out this morning? Rasmussen has been pulled from the race along with the entire Rabobank team for doping. Unbelievable.
So how does it feel to find out something you enjoy so much has now been completely trivialized and may be the dirtiest sport on the planet? Not good. Hopefully after a couple more years of these take downs the dirty will be completely phased out and we can enjoy a clean Tour, who knows.
Anyway today was a good race, Alberto Cantador of Team Disco is in the yellow jersey and is in good position to win the Tour. I have a feeling he may be doping as well though. He doesn't have much experience and he's riding really strong, who knows. On a positive note, another one of my favorite riders who has publicly spoken against doping on numerous occasions in in the green jersey, the great Tom Boonen. Three stages left, including the last individual TT on Saturday. If you haven't been watching, you should tune on Saturday and Sunday - going to be a good day for the sprinters.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Prison Shank: The Musical!

This is definitely one of the weirdest youtube videos I have ever seen. It is a performance of Thriller by the inmates at the Cebu Provincial Detention Center in Cebu, Phillippines. This is fascinating... I have watched this twice already, and I can't think of a possible scenario that would lead to something like this. Must have been a big job for the guy that's Michael to personally talk every single inmate into participating in his dance. What are the day-to-day goings on in a prison like this? I am kind of picturing a West Side Story-esque gang rivalry with a lot of synchronized walking and snapping, maybe some dancing knife fights. Holy shit this is the funniest thing I have ever seen.

NCAA Football '08 Red River Shootout Ad

Saw this for the first time yesterday, kinda gets you amped up for the Fall.

Beckham and Bush

Thought I would throw this up in case you guys haven't seen it. Pretty cool viral for Adidas.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

New Music :: Justice

This is Justice :: Cross. They area French electronica duo with tons of rock influence, check them out. I first saw this video on Subterranean about a month ago and thought it was cool, then a week later Pitchfork gave it Best New Music. I love this video, cool concept and beautifully designed, can't imagine how much time that took. The song is also pretty great.
Here is the aweome video, check it out:

Justice - D.A.N.C.E.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

New Kanye Track :: Stronger

This is a new track off Kanye's upcoming album... it is pretty catchy. But I guess it should be since it's basically a sample of Daft Punk's pop hit - Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger. Seems to be a pretty simple formula for a catchy pop single, take something that was popular 5 years ago and reproduce it. Ah well, I am being to critical... it's a fun song. It has great potential to be a huge beating in a few months. I have heard a little of this new album and it seems like it's going to be a bit of a departure from the two previous, but still sounds interesting and original. We'll see how it turns out. While writing this blog I have been listened to this song 3 times and I think that I am already tired of it, so maybe it won't be that big after all. Touché.
Kanye West - Stronger

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

You Got the Touch! You Got the Power!

I had been sitting in a ginormous movie theater last night for about an hour when I realized that I was witnessing a visual spectacle. One giant robot had just transformed from some kind of bulldozer thing and was rollerblading (really, rollerblading?) down a highway being chased by Optimus Prime. Optimus chases him down, then tackles him as they go flying off a skyway and onto another overpass below in a barrage of blasts and twisted metal. Optimus Prime (the good robot), then pummels the Decepticon's face in with his fists. Yes, they can fight with their fists. It was one of the most over-the-top movie sequences I had ever seen, and I loved it.
Last night in a suburban megaplex theatre filled with a mishmash of 18-25 year olds, I saw TRANSFORMERS. And it was incredibly good, in fact it was amazing from start to finish. The CGI animation is by far the best ever seen, and the story is almost as strong. The robots do talk a lot, which is true to the original animated series. At first I found it a little disarming, then quickly warmed up to it - this is obviously a movie that you can't take too seriously. There isn't any downtime throughout the whole movie, in fact the transforming kicks in about 10 minutes in. Another especially awesome aspect of Transformers is the Maxim-esque talent cast in the two female roles, Megan Fox in particular. Here she is, holy crap: Speaking of eye candy, this movie is dripping with it. If there's one thing that Michael Bay knows, it's how to blow things up and make cars look cool. Tons of awesome fun piled on top of really good times. The only thing this movie was missing was of course the great rock anthem "You Got The Touch" for the original 80's animated feature. Here it is in case you need a reminder, be sure to keep an eye out for the microscope Transformer. Wonder why he didn't make it in the movie? What's more kick ass than an 8-foot microscope?

Which led to this greatness:

John C. Reilly is great.
Transformers also had a ton of product placement, which I think they are getting ripped for, but I think they pulled it off. All the Autobots were GM cars. In fact, half the movie looked like a glorified commercial for the new Camaro. There was also a scene where a Mountain Dew machine, an XBOX 360 and a Nokia phone all transformed. Obviously Transformers is not going to be nominated for best picture (of all time, like the Highlander), but if you like having a fun time at the movies, it will be worth it.

Also - if you like humourous quips, yesterday McSweeney's published "A Letter to Optimus Prime from his Geico Auto Insurance Agent". Which is hilarious, you can read it here.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Montana Photos

I spent some time in Kalispell, MT this past week for a family reunion. We had an excursion through Glacier one day and spent the rest of the week with our incredibly large family. Here are some shots of Glacier National Park and the Ludwig family reunion. My mom has an lot of first cousins - 65 I think, there were about 250 folks at the camp grounds. We are kind of the outsiders up there, most everyone in the family lives in Montana.This was our home for the four days of the reunion - all five of us in there.At night everyone gathered at the fire and drank beer. It stays light super late up there, these shots were probably taken at 10 00.These last two shots are of my Mom's cousin and her family's house outside of Spokane,WA. We stayed with them for a couple days as well. I thought it was so cool, I wanted to show it to you guys. Here is the front yard.
And backyard.