Juan Williams gets two million from FOX after NPR does him dirty…just Political Correctness in effect….
October 22, 2010
Funny story but when I was in MN, I hung out with a dude named DD, my dude from way back. We were hosting a small soiree at our pad and we hang out with Juan Williams’ son. Needless to say, that dude liked to party, which made him aces in my book.
At our party, there were always all types at the party. We didn’t discriminate based on politics, only on your party quotient. If you brought something to the party, then we wanted you around. At our spots, politics were not really discussed, so your political identity normally got checked at the door, with the coats.
Looking at the Juan Williams situation, the terrorists have clearly won. The inability to express your beliefs is the hallmark of a totalitarian regime. If we can’t discuss our feelings, then covert racism will rule the day.
By Matea Gold
Tribune Washington Bureau
12:35 PM PDT, October 21, 2010
Reporting from Washington
As NPR weathered a storm of criticism Thursday for its decision to fire news analyst Juan Williams for his comments about Muslims, Fox News moved aggressively to turn the controversy to its advantage by signing Williams to an expanded role at the cable news network.
Fox News Chief Executive Roger Ailes handed Williams a new three-year contract Thursday morning, in a deal that amounts to nearly $2 million, a considerable bump up from his previous salary, the Tribune Washington Bureau has learned. The Fox News contributor will now appear exclusively and more frequently on the cable news network and have a regular column on FoxNews.com.
“Juan has been a staunch defender of liberal viewpoints since his tenure began at Fox News in 1997,” Ailes said in a statement, adding a jab at NPR: “He’s an honest man whose freedom of speech is protected by Fox News on a daily basis.”
The worst part about this is that it allows FOX to come off as the reasonable party here. For once, I have to agree with FOX here. While they are not really fair and balanced reporting in any sense of the phrase, the ability to paint a picture of intolerance to set up another, major point is necessary in discussion. His beliefs are ones that others share and he was talking about how to combat and recognize that subconscious discrimination.
Meanwhile, conservative leaders lambasted NPR for firing Williams and called for cutting public funding for the media organization. By midafternoon Thursday, more than 4,900 comments had been posted on NPR.org, including many from people who said the media organization was bowing to political correctness and unfairly punishing Williams for expressing his personal opinions.
“In one arrogant move the NPR exposed itself for the leftist thought police they really are,” read one typical post. “After this November elections I hope one of the first things the new Congress does is to defund this poor excuse for public radio.”
NPR serves a public good, a necessary purpose. I want them to re-examine their hiring practices, I want them to bow less to political correctness, but I want them on the radio. Just like NPR overreacted to this situation, the public needs to take a step back, take a deep breath and then keep it moving.
The controversy kicked off Monday night when Williams, a Fox News contributor, made an appearance on “The O’Reilly Factor.” In a conversation with host Bill O’Reilly about how fear of terrorism affects perceptions of Muslims, Williams noted that he harbored some anxieties, even as an author of books about the civil rights movement.
“I mean, look, Bill, I’m not a bigot….But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they’re identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous,” Williams said.
He also noted that it was not fair to cast all Muslims as extremists.
On Wednesday, NPR told Williams it was terminating his contract, saying his remarks “were inconsistent with our editorial standards and practices, and undermined his credibility as a news analyst with NPR.”
The abrupt break came after years in which Williams’ role at Fox News caused internal tension at the public radio organization. Many NPR listeners registered complaints about comments he made on the cable news channel, particularly remarks last year in which he described First Lady Michelle Obama as having “this Stokely Carmichael in a designer dress thing going” and saying she could become “an albatross.”
In response, NPR executives asked Williams to request Fox News not identify him as an NPR analyst when he appeared on “The O’Reilly Factor.”
Dana Davis Rehm, NPR’s senior vice president for communications, said in an interview that Williams’ comments violated internal ethics policies that prohibit NPR journalists from going on other media and expressing “views they would not air in their role as an NPR journalist.” The guidelines also prohibit NPR journalists from participating in programs “that encourage punditry and speculation rather than fact-based analysis.”
Isn’t it a fact that Juan felt that way? He is analyzing his personal beliefs and how that colors some of the things that he thinks about, and he even claims that approach is wrong. NPR is really asking him to lie about what he thinks. If it really is National Public Radio, then the some in the Public think the same things. Exposure can only help, since it leads to discussion that might help people to recognize the other side and have more tolerance.
Rehm said Williams had been warned several times in the past about making personal comments that violated the policy.
“This wasn’t the first time where we felt Juan crossed the line in terms of what’s permitted for NPR analysts and journalists as a whole,” she said. “We felt we really didn’t have an alternative. And it was not without regret, and it was not a decision that was made lightly by any means. We do appreciate the work he has done.”
Williams told Fox News on Thursday that he was let go over the phone and taken aback that he wasn’t given a chance to defend himself.
“It’s not a bigoted statement,” he told Fox News in an interview the cable news network ran throughout the day. “In fact, in the course of this conversation with Bill O’Reilly, I said we have an obligation as Americans to be careful to protect the constitutional rights of everyone in our country and to make sure that we don’t have any outbreak of bigotry. But that there’s a reality. You cannot ignore what happened on 9/11, and you cannot ignore the connection to Islamic radicalism, and you can’t ignore the fact of what has even recently been said in court with regard to this is the first drop of blood in a Muslim war in America.”
Fox News made the most of the incident, rerunning a package about the controversy throughout the day. Williams was scheduled to appear on “The O’Reilly Factor” Thursday night to further address the issue and will guest host the program Friday.
In the meantime, NPR was slammed by conservative leaders such as Newt Gingrich and Sarah Palin, who tweeted, “NPR defends 1st Amendment Right, but will fire u if u exercise it. Juan Williams: u got taste of Left’s hypocrisy, they screwed up firing you.”
NPR, if you really are defenders of the left, why would you give them this ammunition?
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who hosts a show on Fox News, said he now plans to boycott NPR and decline its interview requests.
“NPR has discredited itself as a forum for free speech and a protection of the First Amendment rights of all and has solidified itself as the purveyor of politically correct pabulum and protector of views that lean left,” Huckabee wrote on his blog, adding: “It is time for the taxpayers to start making cuts to federal spending, and I encourage the new Congress to start with NPR.”
NPR receives no direct federal funding for its operations, but between 1% and 3% of its $160-million budget comes from competitive grants awarded by publicly funded entities such as the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the National Endowment for the Arts. Since 2009, NPR has received $8 million in competitive grants from the CPB for technology development and journalism initiatives. It also received a one-time grant of $78 million between 2007 and 2009 to upgrade satellite technology.
Local NPR stations receive $90 million in annual appropriations from the CPB that amount to about 10% of their revenue, on average.
Rehm said it was inappropriate for politicians to interject the issue of federal funding into an editorial decision, adding that she hoped the controversy would not affect financial support for public radio. “Stations are in fund-raising season, so it is unfortunate that this occurred at this time,” she said.
June 27, 2010
Some of you might be wondering what the hell happened to the blog?
I wonder that too. I blame Erik for moving to the song of the month and I blame myself somewhat since I moved. Ronin…well he moved too.
Does that mean that the blog is at it’s end? I think so, at least in the current form. I plan to continue to write things on the blog and it will be a daily occurrence. You will get music from me, you will get stories that I found amusing and/or interesting. I will have stable internet soon.
But, for now, I have internet due to the kindness of Dowling Catholic HS. Yes, I am in the wonderful world of Des Moines, IA. It is hot and sticky here and I am looking to leave as soon as possible.
At least I got to eat here.
January 28, 2010
In what seems to be a pernicious trend as of late, acclaimed author J.D. Salinger has joined the unfortunate ranks of recently deceased writers. The recluse author died in his New Hampshire home of natural causes; he was 91 years old. It seems to me that, at least in the last few decades, Salinger’s 1951 novel, The Catcher in the Rye, has been required reading for students around the world. Oddly enough, it was never a mandatory read for me, though I would suspect that even the large percentage of folks in my situation are still familiar with Holden Caulfield wrestling with the troubles of teen angst. I will take this opportunity to say that Catcher was never one of my favorite reads. I am, however, thankful for the contribution to the literary world and for the effect that this novel has had on the works of so many other authors whom I very much enjoy reading. Brett Easton Ellis (one of my favorites), for one, attributes some influence for his novel Less Than Zero, to Salinger’s work. Of course, on the flip side, how can we forget the various negative influences attributed to Catcher? A number of assassinations (both attempted and successful – Lennon, Reagan, Schaeffer) were also influenced by this one-time controversial work. However, in this time of mourning, let us remember the positive contributions to the world of literature made by this elusive man. Let’s just hope that, wherever he is, the man who detested the spotlight in life won’t be too upset with the amount of attention he’s receiving in death.
January 28, 2010
I just learned that one of the most influential authors that I have ever read has just passed away. His name is Howard Zinn.
When I read material from Howard Zinn I could feel his passion for what he was writing about. He wrote the real history. The History you never find in books in H.S. and rarely find in college. Every chapter would strike a nerve inside of me of mixed emotions. Could be anger, rage, pride, disgust or just about anything “made of sterner stuff”.
The point was that Howard told the stories that no one else told. He resurfaced events in history that had been washed aside by boring antidotes of “great” men of war and conquest. Events that told the real story. Events that gave you a common man’s perspective of events that preceded or followed the so-called “landmark events” you studied about in class. Sure Washington crossed the Delaware. But who was on the boat with him? And why? And why didn’t this fellow that fought in the Revolutionary War get the money he was promised? Or Howard’s telling of Slave Revolts and how they were the most feared and frequent events of a Southerner’s life. Or of the Strike breakers in Colorado that made me swear off a certain beer forever.
I remember Howard telling the story of his reluctance and regret for dropping bombs (yep, Howard was a War hero) over Germany as a young pilot during WWII. And how those events shaped his life, writings, and politics.
Simply put Howard told the truth through a common persons eyes that no one else knew to tell or wanted to tell.
In fact, Howard Zinn is probably the biggest reason I didn’t pursue a career in politics. It just didn’t seem as honorable as it once had in my life after reading a common person’s history of this country. I had no room for a politician’s compromise. Values were reshaped and Nobility replaced by a proud people’s heart and a worker’s sweat.
Good-bye Howard. I will miss you. America will miss you.
Here is something I found, recently published in the Feb 1st edition of the Nation, on Pres. Obama and his report card for year uno. It might be the last thing written by Howard Zinn about our new President.
I’ ve been searching hard for a highlight. The only thing that comes close is some of Obama’s rhetoric; I don’t see any kind of a highlight in his actions and policies.
As far as disappointments, I wasn’t terribly disappointed because I didn’t expect that much. I expected him to be a traditional Democratic president. On foreign policy, that’s hardly any different from a Republican–as nationalist, expansionist, imperial and warlike. So in that sense, there’s no expectation and no disappointment. On domestic policy, traditionally Democratic presidents are more reformist, closer to the labor movement, more willing to pass legislation on behalf of ordinary people–and that’s been true of Obama. But Democratic reforms have also been limited, cautious. Obama’s no exception. On healthcare, for example, he starts out with a compromise, and when you start out with a compromise, you end with a compromise of a compromise, which is where we are now.
I thought that in the area of constitutional rights he would be better than he has been. That’s the greatest disappointment, because Obama went to Harvard Law School and is presumably dedicated to constitutional rights. But he becomes president, and he’s not making any significant step away from Bush policies. Sure, he keeps talking about closing Guantánamo, but he still treats the prisoners there as “suspected terrorists.” They have not been tried and have not been found guilty. So when Obama proposes taking people out of Guantánamo and putting them into other prisons, he’s not advancing the cause of constitutional rights very far. And then he’s gone into court arguing for preventive detention, and he’s continued the policy of sending suspects to countries where they very well may be tortured.
I think people are dazzled by Obama’s rhetoric, and that people ought to begin to understand that Obama is going to be a mediocre president–which means, in our time, a dangerous president–unless there is some national movement to push him in a better direction.
When I read this… just “Pause and Perspective”.
January 20, 2010
In the midst of so many celebrity deaths as of late comes the news of the passing of a “celebrity author” of sorts. Robert Parker was a genius of both the classic detective and western genres. He passed away Monday at the age of 77. I was introduced to Parker by my father, a big fan of the Spenser novels. It seems like just the other day that Ronin and I were trying to find the TV series starring Robert Urich based on the Spenser novels, “Spenser For Hire.” In case you’re wondering, it doesn’t exist on DVD. We found some guy selling a very bootleg set on the internet, but there have been no official DVD’s made. Either way, if you haven’t read any of Parker’s books, perhaps my urging here will motivate you to give him a look. With all of the crap that passes for fiction these days, it should come as a refreshing change. I’ll close by pointing you to a particularly good piece on his life (and death) from the LA Times. Here is the link.
Who wants to read what she wrote? Plus, I want to know who bought the coat? I bet it’s leftover from her spending the Republicans hard earned money out of the war chest.
Sarah Palin book part of conservative boom
By HILLEL ITALIE (AP) – 3 hours ago
NEW YORK — These are boom times for conservative authors.
Michelle Malkin’s “Culture of Corruption: Obama and His Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks and Cronies” spent weeks at No. 1 on The New York Times nonfiction list. Sales have been strong for Dick Morris’ anti-Obama “Catastrophe” and the reissue of “The Five Thousand Year Leap,” by W. Cleon Skousen.
And Sarah Palin may top them all.
In a feat usually reserved for the likes of J.K. Rowling and Dan Brown, Palin’s book was No. 1 on Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.com just two days after Harper announced it had moved up the release date from the spring to Nov. 17 and that the memoir’s title was “Going Rogue.”
Staying power is what it is all about. This book was on the NY Times best sellers list.
The fact that people are lining up to buy it doesn’t really mean much. It might mean people are stupid, but we here have been saying that for a long time.
Palin’s 432-page memoir, still No. 1 on Friday, has been given a first printing of 1.5 million copies and booksellers have begun fighting for sales. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. cut the $28.99 list price by more than half, to $13.50, and Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.com are offering “Going Rogue” for $15.65, a 45 percent discount.
I haven’t seen J.K. Rowling hawking Harry Potter for a big discount. That is because people actually think that she can write and they are patiently (and in some cases not so patiently) waiting for the book.
I doubt that Sarah can string a couple of sentences without throwing one of her trademark “You knows” in.
Plus, have you seen them discounting the book BEFORE IT IS EVEN OUT? That just reeks of desperation and trying to stay in the limelight.
Although she resigned abruptly last summer as governor, and the Republican ticket of Sen. John McCain and Palin was decisively beaten in the 2008 election, “Going Rogue” will surely outsell the memoir of her Democratic counterpart, Vice President Joe Biden, and likely approach the million-selling heights of President Barack Obama’s “The Audacity of Hope.”
Yep, just like people bought Billy Beer back in the 70’s. People like keepsakes, especially if they are memorable. If nothing else, she is memorable for a lot of things, even if it is not being good.
Yes, Sarah, I am calling you the equivalent of Billy Beer, without the cheap price or good taste….
“I know a lot of people who are surprised by this,” says Adrian Zackheim, president and publisher of Sentinel, a conservative imprint of Penguin Group (USA). “There was some question as to whether her popularity was still intact after she resigned as governor and some question as to whether the original following was still with her. The answer to these questions is pretty unequivocal.”
“Movement conservatives are voting with their dollars to endorse the values they believe Sarah Palin represents,” says Twelve publisher Jonathan Karp, who has published books by McCain and by a liberal favorite, the late Ted Kennedy, whose “True Compass” came out last month.
“In a similar way, Glenn Beck, Michelle Malkin and Mark Levin provide an opportunity for ideologically motivated consumers to see their views validated. It’s the political equivalent of attending a Grateful Dead concert. Pure and simple, it’s market democracy.”
Wow, Jerry must be rolling over in grave. Really? Sarah is the same as the Grateful Dead?
The Dead(at least the living….if you believe the ACORN scandal, then really the DEAD too) are for Obama
Here is a Dead Show..
and here is a typical Palin fan…
and her conducting politics….will the book talk in depth about that? That might be the best part of the book…
Karp calls the title “brilliant” and says it “suggests she’ll let it all hang out,” a likely attraction for customers on Amazon, which lists purchasers of Palin’s book as also buying “Glenn Beck’s Common Sense” and Levin’s “Liberty and Tyranny.”
Palin herself has said that “Going Rogue” will give her a chance to express herself “unfiltered,” a bold brand for a public figure who has likened herself to a pit bull with lipstick and once alleged that Obama was “palling around with terrorists.” Palin’s collaborator, Lynn Vincent, has her own history of attacking the left. She is the co-author of “Donkey Cons: Sex, Crime, and Corruption in the Democratic Party.”
“That sounds pretty lively,” says Marji Ross, president of Regnery Publishing, which released Malkin’s book. “Palin is certainly well positioned to take on the bureaucrats and government establishment, but she also may be positioning herself for a run at the (2012) nomination and that might have its own discipline.”
A lot of people have disciples, but do we really want them running the country?
“Palin is going to appeal to anyone interested in American culture right now,” says Harper publisher Jonathan Burnham, who declined to offer specifics on the book, whether content or tone.
“Although she has a very strong conservative following, who are with her through thick and thin, she has this large cultural presence that exerts a great deal of fascination. And what we’re seeing here are two vectors coming together.”
The very existence of a Democratic administration means material for conservatives. In the 1990s, Ann Coulter and Barbara Olson were among those who wrote best-selling attacks against President Bill Clinton. Al Franken, Michael Moore and other liberals were popular authors during the Bush administration. Now, says Ross, as Democrats reign in Washington, “conservatives have been energized.”
“They have really come out of the lethargy they were stuck in last year,” she says.
Burnham declined comment on how or whether Palin’s memoir would be fact-checked. (Publishers traditionally rely on authors to tell their story straight.) Liberals are ready to step in. The Progressive Book Club and Media Matters, a progressive media watchdog group, will soon start a joint project to fact-check upcoming conservative releases. “Going Rogue” is high on the list.
“These books are often riddled with sloppy and demonstrably false claims,” says Media Matters senior fellow Karl Frisch. “We feel we have good reason to keep our eye on Sarah Palin.”
Burnham declined comment on Frisch’s remarks. He said the manuscript, much of it written over the summer, was “extremely strong” and covers everything from her family to Alaska to her vice presidential run.
“It’s Palin, up close and personal,” he says.
Copyright © 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
I just do not get her or the people that think that she is the one to lead the country. You have a right to support her, and fortunately, I have a right to make fun of you for doing it.
July 4, 2009
Everywhere I go people are talkin’ about Sarah Palin. Why did she quit? What is she doing? What a stupid move b/c she can’t win? it’s all over the press also. They just can’t figure this woman out. Here is one interesting one I read this morning.
Palin’s stunning announcement raised more questions than it answered: Is she bowing out of public life? Is there a more nefarious reason for her resignation after only two-and-half years in office – yet another G.O.P. scandal in the offing? Or is the woman who tops most G.O.P. 2012 shortlists to challenge Barack Obama stepping down to get a head start on her next presidential campaign? Palin took no questions after her unscripted, rambling address, and her comments seemed to hint both ways: that she’s “passing the ball” of elected office, and that she plans on working for all Americans, not just Alaskans. “Some are going to question the timing of this and let me just say that this decision has been in the works for a while. In fact this decision comes after much consideration,” Palin said, holding up her left index finger as she amended her thought, “Much prayer and consideration. And finally, I polled the most important people in my life, my kids. And the count was unanimous. While in response to asking, ‘Hey, do you want me to be a positive influence and fight for all our children’s futures from outside the governor’s office?’ it was four yeses and one ‘Hell, yeah.’ The ‘Hell, yeah’ sold it.”
This reporter goes through every scenario. Everything. Except the truth. Palin did it for the $money$. How tough is this one? Palin can’t make much dough in freezing Alaska. But out of Alaska…. Like Tony Montana “The World is Yours”. She can take over Michael Jackson’s tour dates. (too soon?) Go on the speakers tour with all the other out of office politicians like Bill Clinton. (could you imagine an affair between Bill and Sarah? I could…) Make loads of $Loot$. She can also write her book. All politicians have to write a book. Even Obama wrote a book. Palin’s book will be a #1 Best Seller before it even hits the printer. Imagine the $dough$ from that….millions I’m sure.
Youuu betchaaa! Doggone it!
On a side note.
Is she gonna start speaking proper English? I hope not b/c she is so funny when she talks. Her use of prepositions is plain comical.
I say keep it up Sarah. The country could use some more humor during this economic crisis.
This is an open letter to you. You need help and we here at Too Old are here to help in any way we possibly can. I know that you need attention. Who doesn’t crave it? But the way that you are going about it will only hurt in the end.
50 already killed you…it might be best if you just stayed hidden or better yet dead. I mean with lyrics like these
SHUT THE FUCK UP!!!!! We don’t wanna hear your mafia tough talk
That fake fuck boy shit don’t fly in New York…
its better to keep quiet and have people think that you are ignorant, than to open your mouth and prove them right. 50 lyrically destroyed you and whatever is left, Tia is going to get.
At least you have been honest about one thing. The deposition records that 50 got a hold of seem to be true upon further reflection.. When you were telling them that you were not spending all that money, you were right. You were buying your family bootleg gear.
Now, comes the letter that XXL received and put on their website to put you on blast. When will it end? It will end whenever you want it to, but you can’t go around trying to floss if you don’t have it. I looked at the Forbes list for richest African Americans, and I didn’t see you on it.
When 50 Cent isn’t taking baby mothers shopping at the Gucci store, and cleverly assassinating the character of Florida rapper Rick Ross, he’s making trips to the bank.
According to Forbes magazine, Curtis Jackson is the second highest-earning African-American superstar, with an estimated earning of $150 million. This places him behind Oprah Winfrey and in front of movie mogul Tyler Perry.
Most of the rapper’s earnings were raked up by the $100 million sale of Vitamin water. Last year he outearned your favorite rapper on Forbes “Hip Hop Rich List” with a whopping $100 million. Jay-Z came in second with $82 million. Diddy came in third with $35 million.
Then, the XXL Editors received this letter from Louis Vuitton concerning the May 2009 cover of Rick Ross.
We were dismayed to see the cover of the May 2009 issue of XXL Magazine, which features a photo of Rick Ross wearing a pair of sunglasses prominently featuring counterfeit Louis Vuitton trademarks. Because the photo has generated considerable confusion among your readers and Louis Vuitton customers among others, we feel it is important to clarify several points.
The first is that the sunglasses Mr. Ross is wearing were not made by Louis Vuitton, and in fact, are counterfeit. Louis Vuitton did not grant permission to Mr. Ross or to whoever did make the sunglasses to use our trademarks. The second is that no affiliation, sponsorship or association exists between Rick Ross or XXL and Louis Vuitton. The third is that counterfeiting is illegal.
Thank you for giving us the opportunity to correct the confusion.
Michael D. Pantalony, Esq.
Louis Vuitton Malletier
P.S. Have a nice day! William, they are killing you. Hopefully this will get to you in time for you to make some changes in your life. If we can do something to help, please, just let us know…
The Management of Too Old
April 29, 2009
When looking over the Financial Times, (yeah, I read it, what of it? Ronin is the residential financial guy, but I read to understand what little my 453B is earning) I couldn’t help but to notice what the stock market is doing. Our “Friend” Jason has gotten into the financial game and he talks about earning money for people. He loves to celebrate his accomplishments and brag about getting million dollar accounts for his brokerage firm. (We will not mention them because they do not need your business)
The problem is that this guy is like Bernie Madoff…
He took so many people to the cleaners, it isn’t funny. But, Jason idolizes this guy. He says that he wants to become bigger than Madoff. That is why the inside investor tip of the day is “PASS”… Jason says it as a joke, but inside, you can see him scheming on getting your hard earned loot… Read the rest of this entry »
March 16, 2009
Surprisingly, the entire crew got their favorite teams/alma maters in the dance. ( I have to fudge a little bit, I got Berkeley, my favorite team and hometown team, but a little and dirty secret that I have is that I started at Davis (because I was waitlisted at CAL) and I graduated from Weber St. who lost in the semis of the Big Sky to Montana St, even though we ran through the regular season at 16-2.) This at least gives me some reason to keep an eye on the NIT, since Weber will be playing SDSU in the first round, one of the final teams left out of the field.
Ronin will be cheering the UCLA Bruins into battle, while Erik is the resident Trojan fan in the house, cheering for the University of Spoiled Southern California, an illegitimate, wanna-be California Regent School…( I couldn’t help it, since Erik knew he was in dire straights at the end of the regular season needing to win the Pac-10 tournament to make the big dance. We rode him mercilessly about playinng in the NIT or the CBI. They made it, so hats off to Trojan fans everywhere. This is the one time where I throw my support behind all Pac-10 teams, even USC…)
Putting those little annoyances away, it’s time to think about the tournament. I found an interesting article on the LA Times website about resources to use for the tournament and I added a section on food.
- Chicken Wings. You have to have a lot of chicken wings and they are not that hard to prepare. You can do them the conventional way, or do something nontraditional in the preparation, like bread them first, and then fry them, or bake them in your favorite style sauce. One of the Too Old ways will be the use of a Garlic Pepper Sauce to coat the wings, as the sweetness plays really nice with the hotness. I might unveil my curried chicken wings, but I don’t want too much out there, because the gremlins don’t leave…
- Mexican Bar. We usually have some sort of Fajita/Mexican bar for people to make their own tacos and/or burritos during the game. I usually make my sought after al pastor (spicy pork that has been marinated at least two days) chicken and carne asada. I think that this year I will include refried black beans as a slight twist on the traditional classic. This works extremely well, because we have hipster vegans that can’t eat much and they can usually eat the tortillas and salsa and beans. (Although I am going to spike the beans with lard, which is Animal fat…that is where the flavor comes in…) One area that I (and you) can cut corners on is the tamales. Mi Pueblo, a mexican market here in the Bay Area, has a restaurant inside the store. You can buy tamales that they make there that are really, really good. Also at the Oakland Farmers Market (in the DMV parking lot in the Rockridge/Temescal area) have good ready made tamales as well.
- Drinks. This can cause riots in some places. Some people will make the call to load the kegerator and let’s get going. There are some hipsters and other sophisticated types that will claim martinis and such. I don’t discriminate; I say live and left live. I am going to have a decent selection of beer ( re: Beer that I would be willing to drink, like Guinness, Newcastle, Stella, Red Stripe or some Hefeweizen. Does this mean I don’t drink Bud or other cheap derivates? Yes, if I can help it, and I can. I will start the morning games with fruity drinks to keep my vitamins going and get lubricated. So, to get in the proper spirit, I will open up with Baileys and Coffee, with a splash of Kailua, and then move to Pineapple juice and dark rum. Beer really doesn’t work for me until the afternoon games come on. I will have the standard Seagram’s Seven and 7-Up going as well for the mid afternoon change-up
- Kayak.com is the first place I check for cheap airfare. It’s a different business model, but think of it as the Craigslist of travel. Kayak seems to either partner with or one-up all the other heavy hitters (Orbitz, Expedia, Priceline and Travelocity). I’ve also heard good things about Mobissimo but haven’t used it yet.
- Unfortunately, Kayak misses a couple of the best budget carriers. Specifically, you should double check on Southwest, JetBlue, and Virgin America for good rates and dependable quality. My personal favorite is Virgin America. While they only fly to a few destinations, it’s clearly the airline for the millennial generation — tons of in-flight entertainment, mood lighting, on-call food, and even WiFi on select flights.
- Still can’t meet your budget? Google your destination. You might see an ad for a cheap flight.
- Everybody should know about Weather.com by now. Even if you’re a regular, make sure you’re checking the 10-day forecast for your city of choice. It’s at least as reliable as the local weatherman, and gives you all the info you need with one glance.
- While less practical, I’m always amused by GoingToRain.com.
- You’re reading a sports blog, (we do more than just talk trash….we talk sports too…) so there’s a good chance you’re a college student or upcoming sportswriter. In other words, you’re more broke than the BCS. While I don’t have personal experience with the site, I’ve had several friends (and fellow sportswriters) recommend CouchSurfing.com as a cheap (heck, free) alternative to a hotel.
- Use Facebook, Twitter and whatever other social networking sites you’re on to announce your travel intentions — and needs. You never know if a long-lost friend might be able to hook you up at the last second.
- Quickbook.com can find you good deals on higher-end hotels.
- When all else fails, go back to Kayak (or Orbitz, Expedia, Priceline or Travelocity).
- FanFoodie.com is a stinkin’, rotten, awful idea. In other words, I’m really jealous that I didn’t think of it first. They guys behind HuggingHaroldReynolds.com are the brilliant minds behind the site, which has guest contributors from around the country (I did one a couple months ago). Check it out, and look for the categories just to the right of the main column. Click on the city you’re going to, and prepare to eat well!
- Sure, you know about Google Maps. Sure, you use it for driving directions. But did you know they also offer public transportation and walking directions? Next time you’re filling out your start and end locations, look for a drop-down menu that says “by car” and change it to your mode of preference. Unfortunately, this is good for some but not all of the NCAA tournament cities.
- Speaking of Google, travelers on a budget should search for “rideshare” (try it with and without the name of your destination city). They say nobody rides for free … but you can if it gets the driver into the HOV lane.
- Use the forums at TripAdvisor.com to post a question. Unlike Citysearch, you won’t be left wondering if you just got advice or an advertisement. A friend recently went to Istanbul (not Constantinople) and got a recommendation for a good burger.
- LikeMe.net is a relatively new site, but has some good recommendations for places to go. The first time I went there, it told me to check out three of my favorite places in my hometown.
- Yahoo Travel has a number of local guides that will give you tips on what to see and do at your destination.
- You can always try the official NCAA men’s tournament ticket page, but some sites are already sold out.
- If you like to hedge your bets, check out FirstDIBZ.com. The site allows you to plunk down a non-refundable deposit (ex: currently $25 to $150 for UCLA depending on the seat). If your team makes the semifinals in Detroit, they will guarantee you the opportunity to purchase the seats at face value.