Saturday, December 29, 2012

1/8/13 UPDATE: Bowl Progressive Pot Games with Pete Weber and Kelly Kulick


Off the Street Pro Shop located within 4th Street Bowl announced last night they will host (VISE and Storm sponsored) another fundraiser for the family of Tony Reyes.  It will be held on Friday, January 11 at 4th Street Bowl (San Jose, CA) and on Saturday, January 12 at Pacific Avenue Bowl (Stockton, CA).

Entry fee is $200. For more details on the tournament, you can view/download the flyer here.

For those that will be participating, it sounds like loads of fun and wish you luck against PDW and Kelly.

UPDATE: As of January 9, 2013, Pete Weber is injured and will not be able to bowl. PBA Analyst and Hall of Famer Randy Pedersen will bowl with Kelly Kulick in PDW's place.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Chris Hardwick, Nerdist & Newest PBA Team Owner


image source: Chris Hardwick

As mentioned in my November 11 blog entry, the PBA announced a 6-team league which will begin in January 2013. Yesterday, it was announced the league's newest owner is Chris Hardwick.

Chris is a stand-up comedian/AMC's Talking Dead/Nerdist host. What I found out today is he's the son of former PBA tour professional Billy Hardwick. He is named after ABC Sports legend  Chris Schenkel. While Chris's bowling isn't quite at the level his dad's once was, he is an accomplished bowler with a 190-200 average.

Team will be based out of Silver Lake, CA. Players on the Silver Lake Atom Splitter team include Chris Barnes as captain as well as 2012 Weber Cup Europe team members Dom Barrett and Stuart Williams. From what I've seen so far, these guys are going to be my favorite team.

For those who of you not familiar with Nerdist, there are podcast segments of bowling with their celebrity guests. Guests have included the cast/crew of Mad Men, Mythbusters and Breaking Bad.

Here's a YouTube clip of a Team Nerdist vs. Team Mythbusters (serious bowling it's not):


Monday, December 17, 2012

Jack Pinto, A Giant Hero


image source: ABC News


image source: @TeamVic

Victor Cruz, wide receiver for the New York Giants, learned via Twitter (@TeamVic) that he lost one of his biggest fans from Sandy Hook Elementary School, 6-year old Jack Pinto. The picture of the red cleats in today's game against the Atlanta Falcons is a tribute to Jack.

To paraphrase numerous Facebook responses, "I'm not a New York Giants fan. Never will be. But Cruz. WOW."

Victor is planning to visit Newtown this week to give his jersey and cleats to Jack's family.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Moneyball


image source: imdb.com

Over the weekend, I finally got to see "Moneyball" online through my cable provider. As described in imdb.com's summary of the movie, "Oakland A's general manager Billy Beane's successful attempt to put together a baseball club on a budget by employing computer-generated analysis to acquire new players." 

This analysis is the foundation of SABR, which stands for Society for American Baseball Research, or better known as sabermetrics. Until I saw this movie, I underestimated its impact on how today's baseball game is managed as a business. If you're a baseball fan and haven't seen the film, I strongly recommend it.

Here's a YouTube clip from the movie which summarizes what the Oakland A's achieved in the 2002 season.


(note: the actor portraying Boston Red Sox owner John W. Henry in this scene is Arliss Howard.  Mr. Howard is married to Debra Winger).

Monday, December 03, 2012

UPS My Choice


As we are officially into the holiday season, many of us will or already have ordered merchandise online. I recently signed up for UPS My Choice, a free service that notifies you of pending deliveries. The attached screen shot from my cell phone is one of my San Francisco Giants 2012 World Series orders from MLB.com.

Two great features of this service: 1. Signup is free; 2. Specific 4-hour window as to when your package will be delivered. And if that date and/or time isn't convenient, you can click on the tracking number link, sign into UPS My Choice and opt for a different delivery window time and date to have your package delivered.

For me, this service is a wonderful convenience. No more impromptu treasure hunts trying to figure out where the driver decided to leave your package. Best of all, no more attempt to deliver notification dangling on your mailbox or front door.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

MLB World Series Film Narrators



The above video is the closing part of 2012's MLB World Series Film, which premiered last Tuesday (November 20) at the Castro Theatre. The attached film clip features San Francisco Giants players Matt Cain, Jeremy Affeldt, Ryan Vogelsong, Barry Zito, Buster Posey, Marco Scutaro, Angel Pagan, and Pablo Sandoval. They have been asked to do their best impersonations of right fielder Hunter Pence's motivational speeches during post-season play.

What you may miss in the opening credits is that the narrator of the film is San Francisco native, longtime Giants fan and actor, Benjamin Bratt. After hearing Giants president Larry Baer mention other well-known actors that have narrated in previous years, I found out they are also avid, longtime fans of the teams featured in other World Series films.

Here are a few:
2004 - Denis Leary, Boston Red Sox
2006 - Billy Bob Thornton, St. Louis Cardinals
2007 - Matt Damon, Boston Red Sox
2008 - Terrence Howard, Philadelphia Phillies
2010 - Rob Schneider, San Francisco Giants
2011 - Jon Hamm, St. Louis Cardinals

MLB Network has been re-airing many of these films this past week.  For me, it makes the films much more fun to watch. A famous, well-known actor who's just like us. An excited fan talking about his favorite team playing in the World Series.

Taking advantage of MLB's online Black Friday specials, I ordered the DVD yesterday. Can't wait to see it. Over and over again.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Hostess with the Mostest


image source: Financial Press

Unless you were in an alternate time line for the past 2 days, it was sadly announced that Interstate Bakeries, aka, Hostess Brands declared bankruptcy, seeking permission to close business and sell its assets.

As reported in countless news stories, there have been mobs of people emptying store and grocery shelves across the country to stock up on what may be gone forever. For me, it's not a bad thing. It'd wipe out any temptation I'd have to buy a box of creamy, sugary so-bad-for-you-goodness.

My fondest memories of Hostess snacks came as a kid in grammar school. Mom used to buy boxes of Ho Ho's and Ding Dong's to eat for breakfast. I personally preferred Ho Ho's. Neatly wrapped in foil, small, portable, and like M & M's, didn't melt in your hands. The cupcakes always looked so pretty on TV and in magazines, but when it came to eating them, my hands always ended up in a crumbly and sticky mess.

Twinkies, the most well-known Hostess snack cake (and seemingly the biggest loss for most people since bankruptcy was declared), cast its own magic spell on Dad. He often had a box of Twinkies, cans of Coca-Cola's Mello Yello, and/or Nabisco's Nilla Wafers on the TV tray next to his favorite recliner.

Last but not least, the end of Hostess also means the end of the fruit pie (famously encased in red or green wax paper). We also don't want to forget Donettes or Sno Balls. The Hostess Brands closing also means the end of the Peanuts comic strip favorite, Dolly Madison Zingers, Wonder Bread, Nature's Pride, Home Pride Butternut, and Beefsteak.

What I will miss "mostest" about Hostess is the reason why classic food never gets old. It brings us back fond memories of a life and time that may not have been easier, but certainly was a lot less complicated.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Baker System Format - Bowling


A few days ago, the PBA announced the formation of an 8-team league (5 players per team) to begin in January 2013 in Detroit, MI. These are the 8 bowlers selected to lead these teams: Chris Barnes, Norm Duke, Bill O'Neill, Mike Fagan, Pete Weber, Osku Palermaa, Jason Belmonte and Sean Rash. Team owners include Chris Paul, Terrell Owens and Jerome Bettis.

All PBA league (PBAL) matches will bowl under the Baker System format. Rather than 1 player bowling 10 frames, it is a team of 5 players bowling 1 game, 2 frames each. It is most commonly seen in college bowling matches.

Bowler 1 - frames 1 and 6,
Bowler 2 - frames 2 and 7,
Bowler 3 - frames 3 and 8,
Bowler 4 - frames 4 and 9,
and Bowler 5 (often referred to as the anchor) - frames 5 and 10.

To give you an idea of what the matches will look like in January, here is a YouTube clip of 2011's Weber Cup (USA vs. Europe). You'll see most of the players featured from this match bowl on their respective teams in January..

Sunday, November 04, 2012

European Champions Cup Bowling 2012 - Women's Final


From Dutch Bowling TV (commentary in English), here is video of this year's European Champions Cup, Women's Finals. Bowlers: Birgit Poppler (Germany) versus Daria Kovalova (Ukraine).

What impressed me most was their fluid releases. I also noticed was that neither of them were afraid to bowl from the outside part of the lane, something many women don't do (me included). As I've mentioned in previous entries about bowling, I watch female bowlers a lot more closely. Check to see if there's anything from their game that I can apply to mine.

Daria Kovalova lost game 1 and came from behind to win the next 2 games to defeat Birgit Poppler. The final 3 frames of the last game featured some of the best women's bowling I've seen all year. More about the match can be read at BowlingDigital.com.  

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Anatomy of a Post-Season, in Tweets - SF Giants 2012


image source: MLB.com

Series conclusion, San Francisco Giants - 2012. While they aren't as detailed as they were in the regular season (too focused on the games to be coherent), here are the tweets I wrote during their post-season run:

National League Division Series versus Cincinnati Reds:
October 7:
(1) would be nice if some of the 45 points Niners got today could be given to the Giants. Big fat goose egg after 4 1/3 innings.
(2) my, that was painful. Big kudos to "Red Sweatshirt" Dude Bronson Arroyo for an awesome pitching outing.

October 9: no broom today. Giants 2, Reds 1. Kept up hope, slim as it may be. Great pitching effort by Ryan Vogelsong to keep Giants in the game.

October 10: as Tug McGraw put it so eloquently, "ya gotta believe." Giants 8, Reds 3. Another great pitching outing from "reliever" Tim Lincecum.

October 11:
(1) Cheering for that 1st Giants run just now was painful. especially for the ears to hear.
(2) BUSTER POSEY! GRAND SLAM! OH MY!
(3) WOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW! Way to go Giants! First NL team to overcome 0-2 deficit to move to NLCS.

October 12:
(1) keep watching over and over Buster Posey's grand slam, especially where Reds' catcher Ryan Hanigan looks away after Buster smacks it out..
(2) pack your bags Giants! Time to come home to the City by the Bay. Congrats to Mike Matheny and the St. Louis Cardinals for a great comeback.

------------

National League Championship Series versus St. Louis Cardinals:
October 16: Stayed up into the wee hours watching video of last night's NLCS game. Scutaro and Vogelsong: quiet, stoic and tougher than nails.

October 17: Holliday-Scutaro collision discussion needs to stop. We all agree it was a late slide. Focus on Game 3, as I'm sure Marco and Matt are.

October 18: Red and Gold score and no longer trail. Black and Orange deficit grows larger. Rally cap time for Giants.

October 19:
(1) agree with Laskey* (Bill Laskey, former Giants pitcher), the throwing error to 2nd base by Cards pitcher Lance Lynn was the pivotal turn for today's Giants win.
(2) did you ever have deja-deja-deja-deja vu? Clutch win SF Giants! Best pitching effort I've seen from Zito as a Giant.

October 21:
(1) and it's Game 7 for tomorrow! Ryan Vogelsong - wow wow wow wow wow wow. Sets new career high (9) in K's.
(2) now on MLB TV for at least the next 2 hours. Can't get enough of Giants win and praise from Mitch Williams (remember '89 NLCS?).

October 22:
(1) rain starting to fall again. It's less than 2 hours before game time! Rain needed but NOT NOW. Go away. Quickly. Please. Pretty please.
(2) In the pouring rain, the Giants win their 6th elimination game to go to the World Series! So happy Vogey and Scoots are in their 1st WS.

-------------

World Series versus Detroit Tigers:
October 24:
(1) World Series begins tonight. Words to consider from the esteemed Tigers skipper, Jim Leyland, "It's not who you play but when you play 'em."
(2) 2nd night of terrible bowling, but it also resulted in another Giants blowout. A fair tradeoff ;)
(3) LOVE love Giants starting pitchers have RBI's in 4 consecutive games. See if the mighty Tigers starters can do the same.

October 25: Pitching duel to the end. Way to play small ball, G-men. Mighty Tigers manage only 2 hits. Giants 2, Tigers 0.

October 26:
(1) Vogey, WOW. Again. Bases loaded, 1 out. Then 2 pop flies* to end the inning. As I said about him before, tougher than nails. (correction, one of the outs was a strikeout).
(2) GREAT pitching (Vogey, Romo, Timmy) and defense (Crawford, Blanco), part VIII. Giants win 2-0 vs. Tigers. Now 3-0 lead in World Series.

October 27:
(1) gonna be a battle in the "driving mist" tonight. Reformed nail biters may fall off their wagons. Giants 3, Tigers 3, bottom 6.
(2) throat now cleared, cue music, fat lady is in her slow walk up to the stage...
(3) Tweet # 4100 - Sergio Romo strikes out AL Triple Crown King Miguel Cabrera! Giants 4, Tigers 3, in 10. SWEEP!!!! 2012 WORLD SERIES CHAMPS.
(4) so much respect for Detroit Tigers' skipper Jim Leyland. He said, "Congrats to the San Francisco Giants, This wasn't a fluke."

What a season. Thank you San Francisco Giants, for making 2012 another World Series never to be forgotten. I've never been prouder to be a Giants fan.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Anatomy of a Season, in Tweets - SF Giants 2012


image source: MLB.com

Last night, the San Francisco Giants won their seventh consecutive post game to sweep the Detroit Tigers in the 2012 World Series. As Giants fans like me never tire of hearing, this is the second World Series the Giants have won in 3 years, capturing their first title in San Francisco in 2010.

A typical baseball season is long and difficult. Probably the 2 biggest setbacks of 2012 - the season-ending injury to closing relief pitcher Brian Wilson, and the drug suspension of left fielder Melky Cabrera seemed to make the Giants resolve to play well only stronger.

I set up my Twitter updates to appear on this blog and Facebook. What astounds me is many of these tweets describe what the Giants did amazingly well throughout post-season. Here's the 2012 regular season (taken from my Facebook timeline), in tweets:

April 13:
(1) awesomely, stupendously, masterful, dominating 1-hit, 11K shutout by Giants opening day pitcher Matt Cain.
(2) watching encore presentation of SF Giants home opener. Face hurts from non-stop smiling of 1962 team escorted by current Giants players.

April 16: what should've been caught in right centerfield turns into a double. Top of 1st not even over and Phillies have 4-0 lead over Giants.

April 17: didn't start out well, but Giants pull it out with a 4-2 win over the Phillies. Nice D to end the game, Brandon Crawford.

April 21:
(1) Buster Posey shoots down 2 Mets runners in bottom of 8th inning. Giants just need to score some runs, down 4-1 going into 9th inning.
(2) full count, 2 outs in top 9th, Brandon Belt hits high fly ball in centerfield falls for double. Game tied! Giants 4, Mets 4 ***(final score Mets 5, Giants 4).

April 25: congrats to Pablo Sandoval for tying the Giants franchise record for consecutive hits at 18 games. Vamos Papi!

April 28: bottom 7th inning: Brandon Belt doubles to hit in Melky Cabrera and Nate Schierholtz to get Timmy L & SF Giants win, 2-1 vs. Padres.

May 8:
(1) top 2nd inning. 2 pitches, 2 hits, 2 runs. And off Clayton Kershaw. SF 2, LA 0.
(2) unlike last night, great pitching and defense to a get a big 2-1 V for Ryan Vogelsong 2-1 and BEAT LA.

May 12: Matt Cain, star of the game: 2 hits, 2 RBI's, takes out the D'backs shortstop as a baserunner, pitches 6 innings for a 5-2 W vs. D'backs.

May 24: Giants 12, Marlins 3, top 8th. So glad to see Ryan Vogelsong get run support long overdue for his awesome pitching.

May 25: Melky Cabrera's 41st hit (HR) for the month of May is only 8 hits from tying club record of 49 held by Willie Mays.

May 27: SF Giants Melky Cabrera now has 45 hits in May, tying Matt Williams. Needs 4 hits in 4 days left to break club record by Willie Mays.

May 29: another awesome outing by SF Giants pitcher Ryan Vogelsong: 7 IP, 6 hits, 3 BB's, 8 K's. Shame that it's another no decision.

June 3: Speed, pitching and defense. Giants now only 3 games back and nipping at the heels of the Dodgers.

June 4: Cubs' shortstop Starlin Castro brain fart, another Vogel-strong effort and defense gets the Giants a win 3-2 and series sweep.

June 7: Giants overcome 4 errors and take 2 of 3 from Padres to win 8-3. Next up, Texas Rangers.

June 13: MATT CAIN - WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! PERFECT GAME! Giants beat Astros 10-0. CONGRATULATIONS!

June 14: encore showing of Matt Cain's perfect game now on. Only saw final 3 innings last night.

June 19: another pathetic effort by the 76th highest paid athlete as listed by Forbes. Not even 2 innings and Angels have a 5-1 lead.

June 22: Timmy redeems himself with a no-decision with a come from behind win for the Giants in top of 9th vs A's to win 5-4.

June 27:
(1) Timmy L so far: 5 IP, 3 H, 1 BB, and best of all, 6 K's. Looking more like Vogey's chat in Oakland helped. Giants 2, Dodgers 0.
(2) SFGiants SWEEP Dodgers with 3-0 win today & tie for NL West lead. Dodgers score ZERO runs in series. Zito, Vogey, & Timmy!

June 28: FOUR CONSECUTIVE SHUTOUTS! SF Giants' Madison Bumgarner pitches 1-hit shutout to defeat Cincinnati Reds 5-0.

July 10:
‎(1) 2 SF Giants (Cabrera and Sandoval), 2 hits, 5 runs. NL 5, AL 0 after 1st inning.
(2) The Melkman Cometh, part II. Top of 4th inning, 2-run HR.

July 14: "There's the beer truck, Mikey..." - Duane Kuiper. Referring to Pablo Sandoval's run home to win in 12th inning vs. Astros.

July 17: Giants get 18th shutout of the season and win 9-0 versus the Braves.

July 20: Freak's mojo is back, got his 2nd consecutive win. Giants 7, Phillies, 2.

July 24: awesome Angel Pagan catch to double up Padres to end their inning sparks SF Giants to a walk-off win 3-2.

July 30: Giants have to play catch up again. Mets retake lead in top of 10th inning. Relievers aren't relieving very well.

July 31: Hunter Pence, newest SF Giant. Best of luck to Nate Schierholtz.

August 15: Man, this sucks beyond belief. IMO, Gregor Blanco in left field. Sandoval bats 3rd.

August 18: missed 3 innings of Giants-Padres game. Turn on TV, score is 1-1, Zito pitching. Hang up laundry, Padres now up 4-1. Figures.

August 22: Melky Cabrera, Bartolo Colon. As Yogi Berra once said, "it's deja vu all over again".

August 28: LA Dodgers lose, SF Giants win - now 3 game up in NL West.

September 3: magnifico Marco! Walk off single earns SF Giants 4 come from behind in last 6 wins. Vamos Gigantes!

September 7: Marco and an Angel in the outfield. Giants 5, Dodgers 2. SF Giants now 5.5 game lead in NL West. Sweet.

September 8: Oh Pablo. As the 3 hitter on a team that hits few HR's, take a few pitches. DP's you hit into stat may exceed your RBI total.

September 9: wow, miracles do happen. Pablo Sandoval just walked. He must have read my tweet from yesterday :)

September 11:
(1) tonight, Madison Bumgarner, struggling Giants pitcher and sometime power hitter. Swats a 3-run HR to tie Rockies 4-4, bottom 4th inning.
(2) SF Giants overcome 4-0 deficit to win 9-8 against Rockies. Dodgers lose. Giants now 6 game lead in NL West. Magic number - 16.

September 15: D'backs look like Rockies tonight. And congrats to Angel Pagan for breaking Giants club record for triples.

September 20: Nats 4, Dodgers 1, top 7. Subliminally whispering through the TV, "numero tres numero tres numero tres".

September 21: Vamos Papi! Vamos!

September 22:
(1) SF Giants magic # is now 1 and now lead Padres 5-1. Maintain lead for 3 more innings and G-men become 2012 NL West champs.
(2) even my web browser (Chrome) knows. Typed in "S" and the 1st website to show up is sfgiants.com.

Tweets on Giants post-season up next.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Ryan Vogelsong, 2012 World Series, Game 3, Comerica Park, Detroit, MI


source: Lance Iversen, San Francisco Chronicle

Tonight, Ryan Vogelsong won his first World Series game. It was his second consecutive start where he failed to yield a run. It wasn't one of his best starts, but as he's done in the past, he got himself out of trouble 3 times.

Vogelsong's won 3 of his 4 post-season starts. The only start where he didn't get a decision was his first post-season start in Game 3 in the National League Division Series against the Cincinnati Reds. His pitching effort is pivotal because he allowed only 1 run and left the game with the score tied 1-1. The Giants go on to win the game 2-1, and save themselves from being eliminated. From there, the Giants win the remaining 2 games in the series to advance to the League Championship Series.

Back to tonight's game. The San Francisco Giants defense (led by left fielder Gregor Blanco, 2nd baseman Marco Scutaro and shortstop Brandon Crawford) played a huge role in maintaining the shutout, winning 2-0 to the Detroit Tigers, the same score as it was in Game 2.

Here is a recap of the Tigers' scoring threats:

Jam I: Bottom 1st inning:
Tigers center field Austin Jackson grounds out. Left fielder Quintin Berry walks after a full count. 2012 American League Triple Crown King 3rd baseman Miguel Cabrera then hits a single. 1 out, 2 on base, 1st baseman Prince Fielder hits into a 4-6-3 (Scutaro-Crawford-Belt) double play to end the inning.

Jam II: Bottom 3rd inning;
Tigers catcher Alex Avila strikes out. 2nd baseman Omar Infante singles. Center fielder Austin Jackson gets an infield hit. 1 out, 2 on base. Berry ends the inning by hitting into another 4-6-3 double play.

Jam III (Vogelsong's biggest jam) Bottom 5th inning:
Tigers shortstop Jhonny Peralta lines out to Giants 3rd baseman Pablo Sandoval. Avila and Infante both hit singles to right field. Austin Jackson walks after a full count. With the bases loaded, Quintin Berry strikes out and Cabrera pops out to Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford to end the inning.

Relief pitching by 2-time Cy Young Winner Tim Lincecum (2 1/3 innings) and Sergio Romo (1 inning) close out to end the game. Giants are now up in the World Series 3-0 to the Tigers.

All of this information can be read from a gazillion news sources, but I'm writing it for my blog because I don't want to forget what happened tonight. I don't want to forget Ryan Vogelsong's incredible story and what his pitching has done for the San Francisco Giants. It's the tale I want to tell to wide-eyed kids 10, 20, and 30 years from now.

Game 4 begins tomorrow. As it was in 2010, apologies to the rest of the baseball world for making the games look so one-sided. The Giants will approach this as they did when they were down 0-2 to the Cincinnati Reds and 1-3 to the St. Louis Cardinals, one game at a time. There's still work to do. Maintain the great pitching and defense. Stay tuned.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Ryan Vogelsong, resiliency continued


Source: Brant Ward, San Francisco Chronicle

On September 24, I blogged about the resilience of San Francisco Giants pitcher Ryan Vogelsong. In his first National League Championship Series game against the St. Louis Cardinals, he pitched 7 innings, walked 2, struck out 4 and gave up only 1 run, giving the Giants their first win, 7-1, in the series.

Tonight, Vogelsong got his second NLCS win with another stellar performance. As he did in Game 2, he pitched 7 innings and gave up 1 earned run. He walked only 1 and struck out 9 batters (a career high). The Giants win their second consecutive NLCS game, 6-1, to tie the series 3-3 with the Cardinals and force a final and deciding seventh game tomorrow night.

In 3 post-season appearances, Vogelsong has pitched 19 innings, gave up 11 hits, yielded only 3 runs, walked 6 and struck out 18 batters. Regardless of tomorrow's outcome, Vogelsong has been a dominant presence. This is someone who was pitching in Japan 3 years ago and released by 2 teams in 2010 before re-signing with the San Francisco Giants in 2011.

Ryan's journey continues to amaze me. Hollywood couldn't have scripted it any better. Go GIANTS!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Weber Cup XIII (2012)


source: Weber Cup 

This weekend, bowling's Weber Cup (similar in format to golf's Ryder Cup) is taking place at the Barnsley Metrodome in South Yorkshire, UK.

UPDATE - OCTOBER 14, 2012 - USA wins all 6 matches to win Weber Cup XIII, 17-7.

2012 Weber Cup bowlers:
Team Europe: Osku Palermaa, Mika Koivuniemi, Dom Barrett, and Stuart Williams.

Team USA: Chris Barnes, Mike Fagan, Tommy Jones and Bill O'Neill (same as 2011).

At the end of today's competition, the United States leads Europe 11-7. The first team to reach 17 points wins the cup. Here's a summary by year:

2011 - USA 17, Europe 15
2010 - Europe 17, USA 13
2009 - Europe 17, USA 11
2008 - USA 17, Europe 13
2007 - USA 17, Europe 15
2006 - USA 18, Europe 17
2005 - Europe 18, USA 16
2004 - Europe 18, USA 11
2003 - Europe 18, USA 14
2002 - USA 18, Europe 13
2001 - USA 18, Europe 13
2000 - USA 18, Europe 11

In the past 12+ years of competition, USA has a slight edge, winning 7 times. Europe has won 5. Viewing for this year's matches is yet to be announced. I usually find these available on YouTube 2-3 months after the actual competition. 

If you're interested in getting a taste of what the Weber Cup is like, it can be found on my blog entry on March 29, 2012. I've also attached a different 2011 match here:



Sunday, October 07, 2012

Women's Bowling Outside the United States

As I've mentioned in previous blog entries, whenever there's new video of bowling tournaments (particularly outside the United States), I get very excited. A few weeks back, YouTube featured video from DutchBowlingTV the 2012 Women's European Championships held in Tilburg, Netherlands this past June.

The video I've posted below is the women's championship match between Germany and England. While it isn't the PBA, I found these matches fun and exciting to watch. They remind me of the college bowling matches I've seen on ESPNU and on the CBS Sports Network.

Women's 2012 European Championship - Germany vs. England

***
The next video attached is an ongoing series found on YouTube under "P-League", full name: Bowling Revolution P-League. As described in Wikipedia, "..a series of women-only bowling tournaments, developed solely for television. The tournament is open only to selected members of the Japan Bowling Association (JPBA), and amateurs who qualified during the open auditions. "

The "P" in P-League has 5 different meanings: Pretty, Power, Passion, Performance and Perfect. Something for all female athletes, even league warriors like me, always strive to be.

I found out about these videos about 3 years ago from the same dear friend who got me to see the documentary "A League of Ordinary Gentlemen" and has followed bowling a lot longer than I have.

When I first saw the videos, I thought these were fluff pieces to get men to watch (which no doubt they will). My friend said the videos were great in showing him the fundamentals necessary to stay consistent in bowling. After watching several videos on my own, I have to agree.

P-League (Japan)

Even though there hasn't been a regular U.S. women's tour since 2003, seeing videos like these confirm competitive bowling for women does exist, and seemingly quite well.

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Tony Reyes Memorial Services - Sunday, October 7


It's going to be an extremely busy weekend for the Bay Area. Activities include baseball's Oakland A's and San Francisco Giants in the playoffs, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival in Golden Gate Park, Fleet Week, Italian Heritage Festival in North Beach, America's World Cup series races, and a 49ers home game.

If by some small chance, you're a bowler in the San Francisco Bay Area and NOT busy, a memorial service for Tony Reyes (details listed above) is taking place at San Jose State University.

My Wednesday league at Classic Bowling Center in Daly City is selling raffle tickets until Wednesday, October 10. Proceeds will also go to the Reyes family. Tickets are 3 for $5 or 8 for $10. Prizes include a San Francisco Giants XL jacket, Storm Bowling ball roller bag, and a Brunswick Karma bowling ball. The raffle drawing will be held on Thursday, October 11. You do not need to be present to win.

For all SF Bay Area residents: regardless of what your plans are this weekend, traffic is likely to be heavy with all that's going on. Stay safe, drive defensively, and please, please DO NOT TEXT while driving.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Tony Reyes Fundraiser - Sunday, October 14, Bel Mateo Bowl



As I shared on my Facebook page, if there any San Francisco Bay Area bowlers that are interested, Bel Mateo Bowl is hosting a fundraiser for the Reyes family on Sunday, October 14 at 6 p.m. Check-in time is 5:30 p.m.

Tony and co-owner Lindsey Wong operate a pro shop inside 4th Street Bowl in San Jose. I found out tonight Tony was very much involved in youth bowling. This is not a USBC event, so non-league bowlers are welcome to participate. The fundraiser is limited to the first 90 bowlers and spots are filling up quickly. 

If you are unable to attend, but want to donate, please make your check payable to the Tony Reyes Memorial Fund and mail it to: 
4th Street Bowl
1441 North 4th Street
San Jose, CA 95112

or:
Bel Mateo Bowl
attn: Craig Gabriel
4330 Olympic Ave.
San Mateo, CA 94403

My Monday night league teammates and I will be there to bowl. Hope you can help and/or see you there.

UPDATE - October 8, 2012 - As of tonight, there are still about 40 slots still available for Sunday's fundraiser at Bel Mateo Bowl. This is a great excuse for those of you in the area and/or haven't bowled in awhile to come out for a worthy cause.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Tony Edward Reyes - 1973 - 2012

For anyone who's followed pro bowling, we lost one of the great ones today. San Bruno resident, San Jose State graduate, PBA tour pro, Dad to Gianna, Husband to Nicole, and from everyone that knew him, an all-around great guy. Tony tragically passed away in an auto accident on Highway 101 near Menlo Park.

Tony and business partner Lindsey Wong run the pro shop Off The Sheet inside 4th Street Bowl in San Jose. One of my favorite places to bowl with an equally awesome on-site coffee shop. Love their motto "If it doesn't fit, it won't hit". As the PBA has done, here's a YouTube clip of Tony's perfect 300 game in 2006.

My heartfelt condolences to all that knew and loved Tony. You were taken way too soon.
Part 1:

Part 2:

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Resilient - Ryan Vogelsong


source: Ezra Stone/Getty Images North America

I still have a huge grin on my face from last night's Giants win over the San Diego Padres to capture their second National League West Division Title in 3 years.  As I often do after Giants wins, I watch the post game show. Home games with Giants announcers Duane Kuiper, Mike Krukow, Jon Miller and Dave Flemming.

The first Giants player to be interviewed in the locker room was pitcher Ryan Vogelsong. You don't have to be a sports fan to appreciate Vogelsong's career. The Giants first drafted him in 1998, and then traded him in 2001 to the Pittsburgh Pirates. He remained there for 5 seasons, underwent Tommy John surgery, and then pitched in Japan for 3 seasons. He lost twice as many games as won in his time with the Giants and Pirates (10-22, 5.86 ERA).

After playing in Japan, Vogelsong returned to the United States in 2010. He pitched for the Philadelphia Phillies AAA team, Lehigh Valley. They released him in mid-July. He then signed with the Anaheim Angels and was released again.

In 2011, under a minor league contract, Vogelsong returned to the Giants. He finished the season with an eye opening 2.71 ERA and won more games than he did in his entire major league career, 13. He became the poster man for the single word he said to Mike Krukow to describe this year's Giants team: resilient

Resilience, as described in Psychology Today:
"Resilience is that ineffable quality that allows some people to be knocked down by life and come back stronger than ever. Rather than letting failure overcome them and drain their resolve, they find a way to rise from the ashes. Psychologists have identified some of the factors that make someone resilient, among them a positive attitude, optimism, the ability to regulate emotions, and the ability to see failure as a form of helpful feedback. Even after a misfortune, blessed with such an outlook, resilient people are able to change course and soldier on."

Can't argue. Congratulations, Vogey, Buster, Matt, Timmy, Barry, Angel, Brandon, Brandon, Sergio, and the rest of the San Francisco Giants.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Female Action Stars


I'm watching on FX now "Salt", starring Angelina Jolie and Liev Schreiber. If you've ever seen the movie or at least the trailer, Ms. Jolie does a lot of what Jason Statham does - run, jump, shoot, and fight the bad guys. She also did the same in her roles in "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" and "Lara Croft: Tomb Raider".

To see Ms. Jolie in "Salt" reminds me of an article that came out at the time "Expendables 2" was released last month and posed the question, "Who would we choose for a women's version of The Expendibles?"

I decided to do some purely unscientific research. From Google, I entered "female action stars". There were numerous articles from the Washington Post, New York Daily News, Parade and Starpulse. I entered the names from 6 different sources on a spreadsheet. Then I sorted and counted the names.

Here are the names that appeared at least 2 times:

  1. Angelina Jolie and Uma Thurman, 6 times.
  2. Sigourney Weaver and Milla Jovovich, 5 times.
  3. Carrie-Anne Moss and Kate Beckinsale, 4 times.
  4. Lucy Lawless, Linda Hamilton and Michelle Yeoh, 3 times
  5. Lucy Liu, Michelle Rodriguez, Jennifer Garner, Jessica Alba, Halle Berry, Pam Grier and Sarah Michelle Gellar, 2 times.
Again, the emphasis is that these findings are unscientific. I'm sure many of you can think of others not included on this list. For me: Ashley Judd, Maggie Q, Katee Sackoff, and Stana Katic come to mind. 

Which reminds me. I need to put "Haywire", starring Gina Carano, in my Netflix queue. Regardless of the women that are or aren't on this list, the best part is that action star roles aren't just for men anymore. Boys drool, chicks rule.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Hollywood Chinese - update



In April 2008, I wrote about a fascinating documentary I saw at the Sundance Kabuki called "Hollywood Chinese", directed by Arthur Dong. As Wikipedia describes it, "Dong utilizes clips of more than 100 films and interviews of prominent Chinese Americans to create a thorough overview in the depiction of Chinese in mainstream Hollywood films."

I have since seen Hollywood Chinese at least 3 times. In May, 2009, PBS's American Masters aired the documentary. Above is a YouTube preview. Please note the embedded link is disabled. To watch the preview, click the link and you will be taken directly to YouTube.

Monday, September 03, 2012

National Bowling Stadium - Reno, Nevada


The Asian American Bowling Association hosts 3 annual bowling tournaments on Chinese New Year, Memorial Day and Labor Day. Yesterday, I returned from the AABA's Labor Day tournament (my second out-of-area, first was in Fresno, California) at the renowned National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nevada.  Great to see familiar faces from league and past tournaments.

If you're a serious bowler and you've never been to The Stadium, you must make a trip to go there. 78 lanes. Stadium seating. Spacious, clean, comfortable seating and equipment areas. I thought it was extremely cool to see my name on the jumbo scoreboard.

The best part about bowling in The Stadium, no walk-ins. Activity is mostly year-round tournaments and probably why the facilities are always so pristine.

Now that I've gotten a taste of what it's like to bowl at a state-of-the-art facility, I'd love the opportunity to bowl at the International Training and Research Center (ITRC) in Arlington, Texas and the Kegel Training Center (KTC) in Lake Wales, Florida.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Bowlers in the family

As it is in the workplace and in all of the sports I've played, many of my co-workers and/or teammates have become friends and family. In the 4 years since I began bowling so much, I often see couples bowl together and notice (in most cases) how much they enjoy each other's company. No doubt it's the same on the PBA tour, as I've found many of the wives/girlfriends of players are bowlers too. Here are a few examples:

Chris and Lynda Barnes



Carolyn Dorin-Ballard and Del Ballard Jr.
photo courtesy of BOWL.com



Brenda Edwards Padilla and Stephen Padilla


Other couples include: 
  • Bill O'Neill and his wife, Christi White O'Neill, who bowled at Farleigh Dickinson University. 
  • Shannon O'Keefe and her husband, USBC coach Bryan O'Keefe. 
  • Mike Fagan and his fiancee, Emily Maier, who bowled at Wichita State.
  • Stuart Williams and his girlfriend, Tina Stickney, who bowled at West Texas A&M. 
  • Tim Mack and his wife, Brenda Norman Mack.
It extends to the spouse's families as well. Carolyn Dorin-Ballard's sister, Cathy Dorin-Lizzi, is a pro bowler and helps out with ESPN's women's bowling events as a field reporter. Cathy's husband Jeff, has bowled in PBA regionals. Parker Bohn's wife, Leslie Beamish Bohn, bowled at Wichita State. So did Leslie's sister, Chrissie Beamish Kent, who's married to PBA veteran Doug Kent.

A wild guess that date night for these folks isn't always dinner and a movie...

Sunday, August 19, 2012

East of Main Street - Small Talk and Asians Aloud


The focus of my last 3 blog entries has been on Asian-Americans. I decided I'd write another one, but had no clue as to what that would be. Some of the information I researched on "No Look Pass" featuring Emily Tay came from Asia Society.  So I went back to their website for ideas.

I found a trailer (shown above) for an HBO Family feature that aired in May called, "East of Main Street: Small Talk", directed by Jonathan Yi. Charming, sweet and funny, I laughed out loud. Mostly because I know I would have answered with the same responses when I was their age.

As I began to write this entry, I then noticed on YouTube a link under the same documentary name, but with a different subtitle, Asians Aloud. HBO On Demand aired this in April 2010 (May is officially Asian Pacific American Heritage Month).

The biggest difference in this trailer compared to Small Talk is that it's from adults - and, not all of it is funny. This time, I nodded at what the adults said because like the kids, I would have answered with the same responses.

Here's the trailer for East of Main Street: Asians Aloud:


HBO Family will rebroadcast Small Talk at the end of this month. Check the website for more information. HBO isn't among my list of subscribed cable channels, but I'll go back to YouTube to find out what I can.

Friday, August 10, 2012

The Hapa Project - Kip Fulbeck


Photo courtesy of Seaweed Productions
The Hapa Project - website
  • Summer Olympics 2012 U.S. team members Nathan Adrian and Kyla Ross 
  • Actors Jennifer and Meg Tilly, Russell Wong, Moon Bloodgood, Ian Anthony Dale
  • USF men's basketball coach Rex Walters 
  • MLB pitchers Tim Lincecum, Ron Darling (retired) and Danny Graves (retired)
  • NBC news anchor Ann Curry 
  • Sean Lennon
  • The children of my cousins John, Kin, Ming, Kit, Faye 
  • More than I can count on all my fingers and toes, my friends and their children
What do they have in common? All are of mixed ethnic heritage with partial roots in Asian and/or Pacific Islander ancestry*.

Or, in Hawaiian language, Hapa.  In 2001, American artist Kip Fulbeck began The Hapa Project, a photographic montage of 1200 volunteer subjects who identified themselves as hapa. To find out more about the project, please click the website link posted below Kip's picture.

For me, the objective of the project, as described in Wikipedia, said it best: The Hapa Project was created to promote awareness and recognition of the millions of multiracial/multiethnic individuals of Asian/Pacific Islander descent in the U.S; to give voice to multiracial people and previously ignored ethnic groups; to dispel myths of exoticism, hybrid vigor and racial homogeneity; to foster positive identity formation and self-image in multiracial children; and to encourage solidarity and empowerment within the multiracial/Hapa community.

While I may not be Hapa ethnically, I certainly am culturally. Loudly and proudly.

*from "about The Hapa Project" website.

Sunday, August 05, 2012

Nathan Adrian - "Bok Choy"


Photo courtesy of Channel APA

Count me among the millions of women who find Olympic swimmer Nathan Adrian absolutely adorable. As I'm probably in the same age range as his parents, I'll admire him from afar. He's from Bremerton, WA (in the Seattle area) and a recent UC Berkeley graduate, with honors, so he's no slouch in academia either.

At the start of the 2012 Summer Olympics, all the publicity was on teammates Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte. Nathan got heads turning when he upset favorite James Magnussen of Australia in 100m Freestyle which earned him a gold medal. He also swam the anchor leg (freestyle) in the men's 4 x 100 medley relay which got him another gold medal.

Cute, smart, and based on what we've seen and heard from him, humble, and friendly, with a quick smile (Reminds me of someone special I dearly miss). On top of that, his mother Cecilia was born and raised in Hong Kong, which makes his ancestry half-Chinese. When swim teammates found this out, they nicknamed him "Bok Choy" (Chinese cabbage).

Sigh. Best of luck to you, Nathan. You've got a bright future ahead. And I wish you even more luck in fighting off the swarm of women who'll desperately want to be your girlfriend.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Asian-American, former Harvard point guard, and not Jeremy Lin


Somewhere between the Giants-Dodgers game and the start of the Summer 2012 Olympics Games in London, I watched an awesome documentary called "No Look Pass". Melissa Johnson, a former member of the Harvard Women's Basketball Team, wrote, directed and produced the film.

The film's primary subject is Emily Tay, a Burmese-American point guard who also played hoops at Harvard University.  Emily was a year behind Jeremy Lin.  Her upbringing is typical of many children of foreign-born parents that come to the United States poor, hoping for a better life for them, but even more so for their children.  The goal for a better life is often achieved, but how they want their children to live that life can be a major source of conflict. Something many of us experience from our own upbringing.

Emily's mother is set on getting Emily married to a wealthy man once she graduates from Harvard.  Emily wants to play professional basketball in Europe and has made this known to her parents repeatedly. What Emily's parents don't know is that she's gay. The documentary takes us through slices of Emily's and Katie's life (Emily's best friend and basketball teammate) during their last years at Harvard and where life takes them after graduation.

As an Asian-American and former height-challenged hoopster with foreign-born parents, I could identify with so much of Emily's life. Except Emily is a much taller, faster, better dribbler, shooter and master of the no-look pass than I could ever be on my best day.

I found the documentary on Showtime through my cable provider's OnDemand service. It was also featured at the San Francisco International Asian Film Festival this past March. I highly recommend this film for any Asian-American, straight or gay, who has played sports at a competitive level.

Monday, July 23, 2012

From Sci-Fi to Western in today's Wyoming


Photo courtesy of A&E TV

On another channel surfing expedition this weekend, I stumbled upon a new TV series,"Longmire" (based on Craig Johnson's Longmire Mystery Novels) on A&E, starring Robert Taylor and Katee Sackhoff.  

Science fiction fans know Katee as Starbuck from Battlestar Galactica.  I didn't recognize Robert Taylor and immediately looked him up on the internet.  He's also been in the science fiction genre, as Agent Jones from "The Matrix".

If you're fan of Tony Hillerman's Navajo Tribal Police mystery novels, then I strongly recommend you give "Longmire" a look-see. For me, it's the classic Western tale of good versus evil and cowboys versus Indians in today's complicated world, even in the sparsely populated state of Wyoming.  

Lou Diamond Phillips is also in the cast and there are terrific guest performances by Peter Weller, C. Thomas Howell, Tom Wopat and A. Martinez.  After I finished watching last night's episode, I went to my cable provider's OnDemand feature and watched 2 more episodes. I plan on catching the pilot episode as soon as I can.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Lunatic Fringe - Red Rider / Tom Cochrane

Continuing on my quest to showcase music from The Great White North (Canada), this blog entry features Tom Cochrane, the former lead singer of Red Rider.  In 1991, Tom began his solo career with "Life is a Highway".

Several years ago, I heard an updated version of "Lunatic Fringe" on KFOG's Acoustic Sunrise.  It's been awhile, but I found on YouTube an acoustic version Tom did in 1997.  I don't think it's the same one I heard on KFOG, but it's still awesome.  Here it is:


In case you want to relive 1981 (the year the song first came out), get the disposable lighter out (cell phone flashlight is an acceptable substitute) and turn the volume up.



Sunday, July 08, 2012

Learn to Bowl by Andrew Frawley

Andrew Frawley is an Australian bowler and currently the head coach of the United Arab Emirates National Bowling Team.  I've included a 4-part series of instructional videos he did several years back called "Learn to Bowl".  For me, the 3rd video on Spare Shooting was helpful as I've been struggling with picking up the 4 and 7 pins (left side) consistently.

I found these videos to be very informational and easy to follow, especially for bowlers new to the game.  He covers lane courtesy in the first few minutes, which is sorely overlooked in non-league bowling.  Keep in mind your results may vary.  Good luck.







Wednesday, July 04, 2012

What do I love about bowling?


Watching last night's U.S. Open Championship in Women's Bowling outdoors in the dust and wind in downtown Reno, Nevada made me appreciate more than ever how tough it is to be a pro bowler.  And because there hasn't been a dedicated women's tour (PWBA) since 2003, it's even tougher for females.

Kelly Kulick and Missy Parkin, the bowlers in the championship match, have proven that women can bowl with men.

In 2010, Kelly was the first woman to win the PBA Tournament of Champions.  In 2011, Missy won the USBC Queens.  In college, Missy bowled on the men's team for 2 seasons at Cal State-Fullerton.

It's extremely unlikely I'd ever reach the level of Kelly or Missy. But my love for the game is everything that's described in the above promotional video for last year's PBA shootout.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Starry Night in San Francisco


Art by Jason Gorelick

I shared on Facebook and Google+ this morning a YouTube video which featured Vincent van Gogh's Starry Night depicted in dominoes (work by Flippy Cat).  My friend Amy's nephew, Jason Gorelick, saw my posting and sent me his rendering of Starry Night, done San Francisco style.  I liked the art so much it's now the cover photo on my Facebook profile.

Artistic talent runs in Jason's family. His little sister Rachel and mom Rika have featured their lovely works of art on Rika's Facebook page.  This young man possesses many other talents well beyond his years.  

Here's the video which got this all started:


Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sunday sunset in the Sunset

This past weekend wasn't shrouded in fog. I took this picture at about 7 PM today.  San Francisco, in fog or sun is breathtakingly beautiful.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Sarah Polley / The Tragically Hip

Continuing on my trend of writing about people you may or may not know about - this entry features a film actor and a rock group from Canada.  There's a lot about Canadians we Americans don't know about, so this is my small part in trying to change that.

First up, actor/director/singer Sarah Polley.  Not yet even 35, she's directed and acted in 2 outstanding films.  The first film I saw her in was "The Sweet Hereafter" (1997), directed by Atom Egoyan, one of Canada's best.  Ms. Polley's directorial debut came in 2006, "Away From Her", starring Gordon Pinsent and Julie Christie.  For me, this is one of the best films on Alzheimer's effect on loved ones.  Ms. Christie received an Academy Award nomination for her performance.  In Canada, the film won 7 Genie Awards (nominated for 8).

In "The Sweet Hereafter", we see the aftermath of a tragic school bus accident in which most of the students are killed.  Sarah's character, Nicole, is one of the few survivors.  Nicole was an aspiring country music singer before the accident.  One of the songs Nicole sings is "Courage".  Here is a video featuring clips of the film and Sarah Polley's vocals:


Next up, the artists who sang and wrote the song (full title is "Courage (for Hugh MacLennan)") are one of Canada's immensely popular rock groups, The Tragically Hip.  My first exposure to the band was their 1998 song "Poets", which is one of two of their songs that have become personal favorites.

Here is The Hip's original version of "Courage":


And to close out, here's the video for "Poets":


***UPDATE: August 10, 2016***
While replaying my favorite Tragically Hip song "Ahead by a Century", I learned from recent YouTube comments that lead singer Gord Downie has been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer.
Gord and the rest of the boys (Rob, Gord Sinclair, Johnny and Paul) are currently on their Man-Machine-Poem summer tour in Ontario. Dates and locations can be found on their website.

I send thoughts and best wishes to Gord. His songs will always hold a special place in my heart.

Friday, June 08, 2012

Graduation Anniversary



For the past few days, several Facebook friends have posted last day of school and/or graduation pictures of their kids. I love seeing all of them, as they are permanent snippets of wonderful memories in the years to come.  

The above listed pictures in this blog entry are mine. It's my Bachelor of Arts degree from The Ohio State University. In 3 days (June 11), the date will mark a significant graduation anniversary for me. Those who know me well already know. For those who don't, feel free to enlarge the picture. Hint:  it's more than 20 years.

To all students that have finished their school year or have graduated, congratulations. You and your family should be proud of your achievements and what the future holds. If you get a chance, here are some funny and irreverent snippets of this year's graduation speeches, courtesy of Mental Floss.

Sunday, June 03, 2012

Aimee Mann and Michael Penn


photo courtesy of Vanity Fair

The above photo are 2 American singer-songwriters.  As I blogged previously about Jessica Yu and Mark Salzman, you might not be familiar with them.  But you might be familiar with their music. And yes, they're a married couple too.

The spectacled blonde is Aimee Mann, former lead singer of 80's new wave band 'Til Tuesday (known for "Voices Carry" and "Comin' Up Close).  The video clip listed below is the song "Save Me" from the film "Magnolia".


The bearded brown-haired fellow next to Aimee is her husband, Michael Penn (Sean's older brother).  He is best known for the toe-tapping, cleverly written tune, "No Myth".   I'm not ashamed to admit I play this song full blast and sing at the top of my lungs (alone in my car so I don't shatter anyone's eardrums or make any dogs howl).  Check it out for yourself.


By now you're probably wondering if Aimee and Michael have ever performed together.  Yes, they have.  Below is a video from the movie (starring Sean Penn) "I Am Sam", which features the Beatles song, "Two of Us".


Keep up the great work and continued success in your music.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Galbi - Korean short ribs


In the United States, the Memorial Day holiday weekend is our launch to summer.  My favorite ritual for this holiday, Fourth of July and Labor Day is the cookout.  Corn on the cob, potato/macaroni salad, hot dogs, hamburgers and a tradition among my friends, galbi, or more commonly known as, Korean short ribs.  The primary ingredients in the marinade are soy sauce, garlic and sugar.

Our love of galbi began with my friend Pauline and her former husband.  Because I live in San Francisco proper and close to numerous, inexpensive Korean markets, they asked me to pick up galbi for a cookout at their house.  Clueless and confused, I headed to First Korean Market at 4625 Geary Blvd (between 10th and 11th Avenue) in the Inner Richmond.  My August, 2008 review can be found on Yelp.

When I realized I didn't have to speak Korean to get what I needed, this market became the go to place anytime an event with a grill takes place.  As I mentioned on Yelp, "I've brought the short ribs to work pot lucks and softball cookouts.  They're always a huge hit and get asked where these can be bought."  Other Korean markets and restaurants offer them, but First Korean consistently offers the largest quantities and leanest cuts for a reasonable price.

The above picture shows exactly how I like my ribs cooked, medium well with a bit of singe on the edge of the meat.  Once they're off the grill, forget all civilities with a fork and knife.  Grab 'em with fingers and eat them like regular ribs.  If you plan to make a trip, there's other meat and food worth getting.  And save some galbi for me to pick up for my posse.