Thursday, December 04, 2008

Simon Says Shoot Hoops

The Bucks' good luck charm, my Stella, joined me last night for a satisfying, if not boring win against Da Bulls last night. I'm stealing the phrase "boring" from The Bratwurst who continues to be my favorite place to get real Bucks analysis on the game, while I concentrate on the sideshows, general fashion sense of the team, performance of the Energee Girls, and such. However, we're still having fun watching the game. Right now, Stella and I are down with "that short white guy," Luke Ridnour. People, he's 6'4", he is not short. In fact, to prove the point, Saturday Dec 13 is "Luke Ridnour Growth Chart Night" so that the kids can measure themselves up against him and see that indeed, ol Luke is one tall mofo. At least the folks in the front office know that people would think he was "short." But he's a tall dude. And a fast one too. This guy hustles really well and he was on fire last night.
But yes, my Stella was there last night, and she has yet to see the Bucks lose. We had a good, straight up anthem from an operatic type guy by the name of Will Johnson. Johnson has such a well-trained operatic voice that I'm surprised they even bothered to give him a mike. Because he had nothing to prove, he didn't add any unnecessary flourishes, except to hold "La-and of the Freeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee" out so that we could hear how big his lung capacity is, but that was it. Refreshingly well done, Will.

OK, let's whine a bit. I know the concession stands are staffed by volunteers that are making some money for their respective schools or civic groups, but would it kill management to give at least a half hour training on a little customer service? Like, if a register isn't open, don't ignore the customer standing in front of it. Try this phrase on for size: "I'm sorry sir, but that register is closed. These two lines are open, however..." Now that isn't so hard, is it?

So halftime entertainment is a -- get this -- Simon Sez tournament hosted by "Steve Max -- Professional Simon Sez Leader." What a great job! "Hey, I'm John Doe and I sell insurance." "Glad to meet you John. I'm Steve Max, the Simon Sez guy. Do you have a business card? WHOA! I didn't say SIMON SEZ!" Anyway, I have to admit it, he was good at it. He led two groups, the classic men vs. women, and I pointed out to Stella that the kids dropped out early because they just don't listen.He narrows it down to one guy and one girl, and neither of them are faltering. So he takes the easy way out and gives them both a prize.

Maybe that's what's been up with the Bucks until last night. They were waiting for somebody to say "Simon Sez." As in "Simon says quit doing those funky shots you never make" "Simon says play massive hard defense" "Simon says pass the ball a lot" "Keep on shooting from the 3 point line and count on it" WHOOPS! I didn't say Simon Says!

Tomorrow night, for our birthday weekend, Brian and I will head on back to the BC to see them beat Charlotte again, and the game's not televised. And after that, Floor Model is at Zad's with Danny Price and the Loose Change. If ever I needed a Floor Model night, it's tomorrow. I just heard that Atomic Records, after some 20 years in the business in one name or another, is closing its doors in February. OK, I have to admit, I'm probably one of the reasons why. With the kids and all, I don't have time to cruise the record stores like I used to and I've been buying my music either online, via iTunes or directly from the artists when I see them at shows. And the closing of Atomic is a symptom of a bigger loss. What a void my life would have suffered without the cool record store in every town I've lived in! -- staffed by people who were as passionate about music as I was, who learned my tastes and could always recommend something great that would change my life. I would have never known about anybody from Devo to the Pretenders to the Magazine to ..... the last piece of vinyl I bought before I bought a CD player, the Pixies' "Doolittle." And it was recommended to me by some pierced college student behind the counter at Rich Menning's Atomic Records. I wish all those guys the best and hope (and gotta believe) that they'll somehow still be in the business of moving great music from artist to consumer. Hey Rich, nobody said Simon Says!

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