Monday, February 4, 2008

How to Kill Time Until March

If you are like me and you are a Pats fan then right now you are probably saying, "basta" (enough) to yourself after the Pats Super Bowl debacle on Sunday night. You need a break from sports. You need a break from ESPN. You just need to not think about those things for at least a few days because everything you see will lead your thoughts to meandering back to the Super Bowl.

Well, if you are like me then you know that it is absolutely impossible to distance yourself from sports just because you care too much. The Pats lose in agonizing fashion and the only way to snap yourself out of the funk is to start thinking about things like Manny playing like he did in the postseason last year, Dice-K making a Josh Beckett like leap, and the Celtics hopefully having the juice to play up to and even past Memorial Day for the first time since 2002 or the second time since god knows when, the early 90's probably. Of course all those things are not that close. We've got about a month until Spring Training games start in earnest and right now the NBA is in full mid-season mode. At least this year the talk of the Celtics is not where they'll pick in the lottery but rather how they can add that extra piece to make them actually legitimate Championship contenders. As we stand now, the C's are a virtual lock for being a 1 or 2 seed in the East but the team's true mettle and playoff ability will not really be known until the playoffs actually start with it being their first run together and all.

In the meantime, following the Celtics will mean slogging through middling games with the Milwaukees and Atlantas of the world. Fear not though, because THE marquis stretch of the C's season is coming up with a road trip through Denver, Golden State, Phoenix, Portland, and LA (for the Clippers) right after the break and then a couple of weeks later a trip through Texas and to New Orleans. If you are a Celtics fan and you are not excited for that trip then then there is something wrong with you. Aren't you dying to see how they fare against the best of the best? There are 9 road games mentioned there and 8 of those teams have (everyone except the Clips) very real playoff hopes.

And with Phoenix, Dallas, San Antonio, and New Orleans - yes New Orleans - the C's are facing the top seeds in the better conference. As my 12th grade trig teacher used to say, "If you don't like that, you don't like much in life".

After those two trips though, it will be more or less play out the string time for the last month of the seaons for the Celtics, but that will be okay because the start of the baseball season will be imminent and the NCAA Tournament will be ongoing so the excitement of those two events should hold everybody over until the NBA Playoffs get rolling in mid-April.

So sure, we're kind of in dead time now, but there are some good things to look forward to if you are like me and just cannot quit sports like Jake Gylenhall could not quit Heath Ledger RIP on the mountain.

If that is not enough, here are some other things that I'd suggest checking out to keep your interest.

1) Read a book.

Seriously. I'm not trying to be flip. With all of the buzz around Juno, try Nick Hornby's most recent novel, Slam. Slam tells a similar story to what goes on in Juno except this story I found to be both more believable and entertaining once you get over one big leap of faith which is pretty easy to come to grips with because it is dealt with immediately and consistently throughout the novel. The book is a real quick read and I'd dare say it is my second favorite Hornby novel behind About a Boy (much less chick-flicky than the movie). Seriously, I challenge anybody to read Slam and then go see Juno and tell me that Juno was the superior product.

2) Watch more TV.

Ha! I'm crazy aint I! I'm not going to tell you to watch Friday Night Lights or The Wire because you probably already get that elsewhere. If you are unwilling to give either of those shows a try then you very well may be a lost cause because each are fantastic but enough people jerk off over those shows that I will spare you for now and just assume that you don't watch them because you are sick of hearing about them. (The Wire I could write on for years. It is by far my all time favorite TV show. FNL is sneaky excellent, especially Season 1. So there, I did sneak in my two cents on each of those shows and you will be getting about three dollars worth of The Wire sometime real soon.)

Anyway, my TV reccomendation for everybody out there is Six Feet Under. After much prodding from my dad and my friend Chad, I finally started watching this on DVD over the summer. I'm only through the first three seasons so far, but the show is absolutely phenomenal. Honestly, it's a lot more like the later episodes of Sopranos than you may think. The only reason I would ever tell you not to watch Six Feet Under is if you are a virulent homophobe. If that is true, then please do not watch this show. There is a lot of man-love and you will get angry.

As for the three seasons I have seen to date, the first was outstanding, the second took a step back, and the third was outstanding again. The first was definitely my favorite though as it truly embraced the show's black, black comedy potential while the latter two seasons dabbled a bit some melodrama. Not offensive melodrama though and I say that because there is only one "event" in each the second and third seasons that could fall under this label and both serve a greater purpose to the show then just trying to suck you into the next episode. It is not week after week of doom and gloom and preposterous circumstances.

Enough babbling, just give the show a try. I can almost promise you that you will really like it.

Well that is that for now. Thanks for tuning in.

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