Shirley Temple? I’d Rather Have a Beer

Posted in History, Television with tags , , , , , , , , on March 11, 2011 by Jordan

Sometimes I think back to times past and reflect on what life must have been like during certain time periods. One of those time periods is the post-WWII era and the years of the baby boom. During this time period, economic growth and prosperity was like never before, all the while the fear of communism and the constant threat of nuclear war constantly weighed on people’s minds.  Economics and politics aside, I think the worst part of living during this period had to have been the programming on T.V.  All signs indicate that Shirley Temple was the best thing to watch during the late 50s and early 60s with Howdy Doody coming up a close second.  I have no ideas what Howdy Doody is but I do know that Shirley Temple has an entertainment value equal to that off a Darryl Sutter monologue.  If T.V. was this bad when I was a kid growing up in the 80s and 90s I probably would have become a better speller. I truly feel sorry for anyone who grew up looking forward to this show.

City and Colour can Suck it and Keep on Suckin’ it!

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 27, 2011 by Jordan

The 2011 Canada Games concluded in Halifax yesterday after two weeks of competition.  I took in a couple of hockey games and watched some long track speed skating at the outdoor oval one afternoon. The actual sports of the Canada Games did little for me (the athletes were young teenagers and the elite level of competition just wasn’t there for the most part) but I was a fan of the nightly free concerts put on by the games. Throughout the two weeks I took in four of the free shows, including; Joel Plaskett, Sloan, Hey Rosetta and City and Colour.  The concerts were all outside and other than Joel Plaskett’s show on Valentines Day the temperature was pretty cold for every concert.  However, it wasn’t until City and Colour took the stage last night that I heard a single band complain about the cold temperatures and essential let it ruin their show.

Going into last night, I had seen City and Colour play once before.  It was on other a brisk September evening a couple of years ago in Vancouver’s Stanley Park.  At this concert, Dallas Green commented after every song about the cold and how it kept affecting the tune of his guitar.  As their first song came to a close last night, I turned to my brother and said, “I guarantee you this band complains about the temperature and says that it keeps putting their guitars out of tune.”  Within five seconds of me saying that Dallas Green says, “We’re going to be taking a little more time than usual between songs because the temperature keeps putting our guitars out of tune.”  It was nice that Dallas didn’t make a liar out of me but he and his band followed that comment up with countless others like it throughout the night in addition to long delays between songs, stopping a song halfway through it because Dallas’s guitar went out of tune and taking a five minute break to warm up after playing just four songs.

I get that playing in -10˚ C temperatures is not ideal and that playing the guitar is tough when your hands are cold.  However, City and Colour did themselves no favors last night.  They failed to put their hipster image aside for one night and dress appropriately for the frigid temperatures.  Dallas was wearing a denim jacket with a scarf while the other guitar player wore a three-piece suit and a top hat.  To me, the incessant complaining fell on deaf ears for a host of reasons.  One, the girl that opened up for City and Colour in the exact same temperatures didn’t say a word about how cold she was, probably due to the fact that she wore a winter jacket and a toque.  Two, Sloan played in temperatures close to -30˚ C the week before and absolutely killed their set without muttering a word about how cold they were.  Again, these guys dressed appropriately by wearing parkas, toques and gloves with the fingertips cut out.  Last, City and Colour had several fans blowing hot air on them throughout the entire show.  From what I could tell, Sloan had just one bush league heater on the stage that the one guitar player occasionally heated his hands up with in-between songs.

I’m not saying that City and Colour is a bad band because they’re not…. they write some of the best “sui watch” songs in the business.  What I am saying is that they are a bunch of pussies and complainers that can’t handle less than ideal playing conditions. I have now seen City and Colour play two outdoor shows, neither of which was without complaints about the temperature.  Consequently, if you plan on watching an outdoor City and Colour show you best not waste your time unless the outside air temperature equals room temperature (roughly 20-21˚ C).  Because of this, City and Colour can suck it and Leah Miller can keep on suckin’ it!

Indian Idol Will Rock You… Sing it!

Posted in Music, Television with tags , , , , , , , on February 25, 2011 by Jordan

I have no idea how many years American Idol has been around but if I had to hazard a guess I would say about 10.  I’ve never really gotten into American Idol but I have tuned in enough throughout the years to have a handle on the state of the show. I think it’s safe to say that “Idol” has become rather stale in recent years and has correspondingly spawned very few stars (if any) since Carrie Underwood.  That said, the addition of the humorous and eccentric Steven Tyler to this season has been a nice touch.   He is after all, Jim Henson’s greatest creation.

 

In an attempt to find some actual singing talent, I’ve been forced to abandon American Idol and engage some of the other national “Idol” shows.  I tried Canadian Idol but it has been downhill since Kalan Porter (Not like Kalan Porter was a real high point in Canadian music… am I right or am I right?).  I gave British Idol a go but it produces nothing but Liam Gallaghers who dump beer on the judge’s heads or Chris Martins who just seem to make the Brits seem a little bit gayer.  Consequently, it wasn’t until I stumbled across Indian Idol that I actually found something worthwhile.

 

Rather than have a billion Indians show up to a cricket stadium to audition for the show’s top 20 contestants, preliminary contestants send in their audition tapes.  The Indian Idol judges sift through millions of tapes and release only the best of the best to the Indian public.  We at The Whole Ball of Wax have gone through the best of the best and in our opinion this is the Best of the best.

 

Enjoy!

 

Worst 1st Overall NHL Draft Pick Ever

Posted in Sports with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 22, 2011 by Jordan

Every NHL draft has had its fair share of busts in it.  It’s not uncommon to look at a list of first rounder’s from any past draft and not recognize half the names on it. What is uncommon is for the first overall pick of the NHL draft to be a bust.

 

The annual NHL draft began in 1963 with the Montreal Canadian’s selecting Garry Monahan from the St. Michael’s Juveniles… that’s right Juvenile!  Since 1963 there have been 47 first overall picks and just three have never played a single game in the NHL.  All three of these players were selected in the 60s when NHL players made like 20 bucks a game so I don’t really care about them.  So, rather than analyzing all 47 first overall picks to determine the worst one ever I am only going to focus on the 26 that have occurred in my lifetime starting with Mario Lemieux in 1984.

 

When I look down the list of first overall picks since 1984 there are some pretty big names on that list including; Wendel Clark, Mike Madano, Mats Sundin, Eric Lindros, Joe Thornton, and more recently Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby and Steven Stamkos.  In addition to these names I’ve mentioned there are a host of other studs that are equally as impressive.  However, three names stand out as the worst; Alexandre Daigle, Patrik Stefan and Rick DiPietro. These three guys are without question the biggest NHL first overall busts of my lifetime.

 

The Ottawa Senators selected Alexandre Daigle before Chris Pronger and Paul Kariya in the 1993 Draft.  It is reported that the Senators even passed on a deal with the Quebec Nordiques that would see them acquire Owen Nolan, Peter Forsberg and Ron Hextall for their first overall pick.  Instead, the Senators selected Daigle and offered him a five year $12.25 million deal, which was the richest entry level contract in NHL history at that time.  Daige amassed just 327 points over 11 seasons while playing for six different teams.

 

 

Patrik Stefan was selected first overall by the Atlanta Thrashers in the weak 1999 Draft ahead of the Sedin twins who were basically the only bright spot of the 99’ draft.  Stefan racked up a feeble 188 points over seven seasons while playing for the Thrashers and Dallas Stars.  Lack of accomplishments aside, Stefan is probably best known for one of the most memorable bloopers in NHL history.  While playing for the Stars, Stefan over handled the puck on an empty net breakaway and then watched the Edmonton Oilers collect the lose puck and score at the other end of the ice forcing the game into overtime.

 

 

Both Daigle and Stefan were bad first overall selections but to me the worst NHL first overall draft pick since 1984 was Rick DiPietro.  The New York Islanders made history when they selected a goalie for the first time in NHL history as the first overall pick in the 2000 draft.  Islanders GM Mike Milbury traded Roberto Luongo to the Florida Panthers for the first overall pick and the right to secure DiPietro with the first selection.  DiPietro came out of college with a lot of promise and for the most part lived up to the hype in his first couple of season in the NHL while playing on a bad team.  DiPietro was rewarded with his solid play in 2006 when he signed a 15-year $67.5 million contract with the Islanders.  What makes DiPietro a bust in my eyes is that he showed the potential of being a premier NHL goalie, signed a big contract, and then literally fell apart after sustaining injury after injury.  In the last three seasons DiPietro has played just 34 games and accumulated just 10 wins.  DiPietro is the quintessential boom player that cashed in big and went bust in a hurry.  There is no way Mike Milbury can look at DiPietro today and say he has come even close to living up to his potential.  He certainly can’t say DiPietro for Luongo was a rewarding deal for the New York Islanders.

 

Grease II is a Cool Rider

Posted in Movies, Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 20, 2011 by Jordan

When I was in high school the song “Summer Nights” was played at every high school dance I went to despite the fact that the movie Grease came out six years before I was even born.  Even more peculiar than the playing of “Summer Nights” was that everyone seemed to know all the lyrics to it.  Despite the fact that my peers had an acute knowledge of this jam, I always found myself faking my way through the entire song.

 

You see, while everyone was going crazy upon hearing the opening lyrics, “Summer lovin’ had me a blast”  I was  standing there thinking “I could really go for some ‘Cool Rider’ right about now.” Why was I thinking this?… because I have yet to watch the movie Grease nor do I care to watch it because there’s no possible way it could be as good as its sequel Grease II.

 

Grease II embodies everything a good high school musical should embody.  The action is focused around the prestige and thrill of motorcycles, but is complimented with a well-choreographed bowling scene and an unpredictable Luau.  It has hot chicks, a guy with an English accent, and a youthful Shooter McGavin with his collar popped constantly.  There is no possible way the first Grease could ever live up to the success and critical acclaim of Grease II.  As a result, I will never watch the first Grease and accept the fact that John Travolta was once skinny.

Cheese Machine

Posted in Philosophy with tags , , , , , , , , on January 31, 2011 by Jordan

Since last summer, my golf battery has been fully charged.  It’s not uncommon to find me chipping golf balls across my living room with the Golf Channel on in the background.  With a little more practice I’m fairly certain I’ll be able to flop a ball over the armchair with enough spin to stop it before it hits my guitar amp.  If my golf skills fail me, I’ll likely invest in one of the gadgets promoted on Golf Channel infomercials.  The V Harness should help coach my muscles into repeating the perfect golf swing while the Stack and Tilt video should help me keep my axis over the ball…whatever that means.  Should my frustration for golf overtake my passion for the game, I will likely sell my clubs and buy a Cheese Machine.  This should enable me to obtain my life long dream of producing copious amounts of cheese.  Soon the world will need cheese and I will be the one to provide it.

A Genius Sends An Idiot Abroad

Posted in People, Television with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 30, 2011 by Jordan

Ricky Gervais has received a lot of mainstream attention since he hosted the Golden Globe Awards a couple of weeks ago.  At the Golden Globes, he poked fun at Tom Cruise’s questionable sexuality, took a jab at Robert Downie Jr.’s past run ins with the law, and called Steve Carrel “ungrateful” for quitting The Office.  I personally found the jokes hilarious but the stuffy stars of Hollywood did not seem to share my sense of humor.

 

For some reason people seemed surprised at Gervais’ style of humor.  Somehow they forgot that this was the guy who created The Office and Extra’s and solidified himself as a writer and comedian through standup comedy.

 

Rick Gervais has been huge for a couple of years now whether you’ve heard of him or not.  Consequently, he has as much money as Forest Gump after hurricane season.   Gervais has called his newest project, “The most expensive practical joke I’ve ever done.”   It’s better known as An Idiot Abroad and follows the uninformed and unintentionally funny Carl Pilkington to the Seven Wonders of the World.  This is without question, the funniest cultural/travel documentary that has ever existed.  In addition, its Friday midnight timeslot works into my schedules perfectly.  There is after all, no rest for the wicked here at The Whole Ball of Wax.

This Needs to Stop

Posted in People with tags , , , , , , , , , on January 26, 2011 by Jordan

There’s been a lot of fan mail coming in as of late asking about the LC and what she is up to.  In order to dispel the rumors that she has succumb to the Fun Dip, it is my privilege to announce that The Whole Ball of Wax’s gossip insider has started up a side project with three others called, This Needs To Stop.  This blog dabbles in a plethora of topics ranging from Bruce Jenner’s unreal hair to movie reviews.  This blog is so hot and hip it makes US Weekly look like an aborted fetus on the floor of a McDonald’s washroom after a homeless guy shit himself in the stall while smoking crystal meth.  I’m personally so inspired by this blog that I’ll be coming out with my own sex tape next week.

In the words of Kenny Powers, “Perez Hilton, you’re fucking out!  This Needs To Stop, you’re fucking in!” Pffffffffff.

Man vs Food vs Reduced Life Expectancy

Posted in Education, Television with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 25, 2011 by Jordan

The technology of television is unbelievably fascinating to me.  When I was a kid watching wrestling in the 80s, TV’s were pieces of furniture that sat on the floor of the living room and weighed about 300 lbs.  Now, TV’s are pieces of art mounted on walls that are no thicker than a Gordon Korman book and weigh about 30 lbs.

 

The evolution of TV’s over the last 20 years is both impressive and remarkable. What’s not impressive and remarkable is how dormant and contradictory TV programming is on a nightly basis.  For example, The Biggest Loser on NBC documents the physical and mental process of morbidly obese individuals as they learn to drastically alter their lifestyles while competing against each other to lose the most weight.  This is both a positive and educational show that most North American’s can actually benefit from.   On the other hand, you can flip to OLN on any given night and find a show called Man vs. Food.  For those that have not seen this show, Man vs. Food basically takes everything positive The Biggest Loser has achieved over the last 10 years and marginalizes it with every 30-minute episode.   Man vs. Food follows a guy named Adam Richman around America as he exhibits unique American comfort food and attempts to complete a nearly impossible food eating challenge.

 

Man vs. Food is everything that is wrong with North America.  It promotes excess, greed and poor manners.  If this guy came over to my place for dinner and talked with his mouths full as he moaned with ecstasy, I would have no choice but to thank him for his awkward compliments and kick him the fuck out of my home.  Adam Richman is 30 lbs away from being the likable chubby guy that showcases food around America to competing on the next season of The Biggest Loser.

 

So basically what I’m trying to say here is The Biggest Loser is like a 50 inch plasma mounted on your wall; while, Man vs. Food is like the TV in my grandma’s basement.  It’s outdated, clunky and uses a rotary dial to change the channel.

Mud Flaps

Posted in Music, People with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 19, 2011 by Jordan

While I was at the gym today a song on the radio caught my attention.  I was drawn in by the baritone voice of the singer and wondered who owned the soothing voice.  It took about five seconds of wracking my brain to identify the voice as that of pop diva Cher.  As I listened to Cher make my voice sound high I thought to myself, “where does Cher get off?”

As soon as Sonny and Cher ceased to exist, Cher started parading around in fishnet stockings and a little flap of cloth that barely covered her crotch.  I’m sure there is the odd grease ball out there that actually finds Cher attractive and loves the suggestive nature of her flap; however, if Brittany Spears, Lindsay Lohan, or Miley Cyrus danced around on stage wearing fishnets and a crotch flap they would be nailed to a cross and probably forced to enter some sort of rehab.

The media holds a ridiculous double standard when it comes to female pop singers.  Old disgusting women like Cher and Madonna have a free pass to dress like ‘pros’; while, young attractive trendsetters are under constant media scrutiny and ridicule.  In order to maintain consistency, there needs to be a mandatory flap rule implemented for all female pop singers.  This way there will be no talk of who is pushing the envelope… there will only be a question of who wears the flap best.

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