01.31.08

Derek Sanderson Versus The Entire Canadiens Bench

Posted in History's Not Happening, Hockey at 4:35 am by

Forgetting the Red Sox and “Ask The Manager”, this is the hottest possible WSBK footage you could possibly see.

And aside from a dope deal at Chet’s Last Call, this is probably the most unlawful behavior ever witnessed in North Station.

01.30.08

What’s Beef?: New York Times Scoops New Jersey Native On Meat-Related Ritual

Posted in Food, non-sporting journalism at 11:52 pm by

First it’s the outrageously baroque mob-douchery at Jets games, and now it’s beef tenderloin dipped in butter: even though I don’t live in New Jersey anymore, I did grow up there, and I don’t appreciate the New York Times scooping me on things that take place in my (parents’) backyard. That said, I found today’s Times‘ article detailing the long history of the Bergen and Passaic County banquet staple known as “The Beefsteak” (no words left out, there). The sports relevance in this article is negligible…until you consider that it was written, oddly enough, by none other than Uni Watch’s stirrup-sock obsessive Paul Lukas. We join Mr. Lukas in scenic (not really) Hasbrouck Heights, NJ.

About 350 men, seated shoulder to shoulder at long tables, were devouring slices of beef tenderloin and washing them down with pitchers of beer. As waiters brought trays of meat, the guests reached over and harvested the pink slices with their bare hands, popping them down the hatch.

Each slice was perched on a round of Italian bread, but most of the men ate only the meat and stacked the bread slices in front of them, tallying their gluttony like poker players amassing chips. Laughter and uproarious conversation were in abundance; subtlety was not.

As anyone in northern New Jersey could tell you, this was a beefsteak. The term refers not to a cut of meat but to a raucous all-you-can-eat-and-drink banquet with a rich history in Bergen and Passaic Counties.

The events, which typically attract crowds of 150 or more, with a ticket price of about $40, are popular as political meet-and-greets, annual dinners for businesses and civic groups, and charity fundraisers. Caterers said they put on about 1,000 of them in the region last year.

œOnce you start going to beefsteaks, it™s an addiction, said Al Baker, a Hasbrouck Heights policeman who had organized the evening™s festivities to benefit the Special Olympics. œYou™ve got the tender beef, butter, salt, French fries, beer ” all your major food groups. But it™s very unique to North Jersey. I go to other places and nobody™s heard of it.

There’s much more, including a detailed history of the Phillies old zip-up jerseys this particular tradition’s New York roots. It’s recommended, for those who don’t mind reading the word “beef” twice per paragraph.

NPR’s Simon : Will Leitch Has A Problem

Posted in Blogged Down, Racism Corner, Radio, Sports Journalism, Will Leitch Sucks at 8:23 pm by

I’m sure you’ll agree it totally sucks when jealous bloggers routinely mock successful, multi-media personalities who’ve worked so hard to attain fame and fortune. But enough about the cruel treatment afforded to Stephen A. Smith, let’s instead check out someone else’s take on Will Leitch.

“God Save The Fan” author Leitch, whose curious choice of party attire was featured here yesterday, recently sat still long enough to speak with National Public Radio’s Scott Simon. The latter could well have allowed Leitch to peddle his tried and tested spiel about crusty-press-box-reporters being out of touch with today’s fan, but instead took Will to task for some rather bizarre comments about prominent African-Americans, and didn’t let the Deadspin editor escape without suggesting he’s every bit as big a pandering creep as the television bozos he routinely lampoons.

Remarkably, with the exception of this entry, I’ve not seen a reference to said NPR interview elsewhere. That mainstream media outlets who’ve published Will’s work — The Sporting News, New York, The New York Times and GQ amongst them — might not consider such an exchange newsworthy is hardly a surprise. But the deafening silence from the sports blogosphere is rather out of character.

Let’s just imagine for a minute, a prominent pro jock, noted print journalist or sports television personality was interrogated about his or her racial sensibilities on a radio program and took it on the chin nearly as badly as Leitch. What’s the likelihood this hypothetical incident would go unnoticed by the same sports blogs who routinely cover even the slightest faux pas by an athlete or broadcaster?

Either there’s an overwhelming (quiet) consensus that Scott Simon’s out to lunch (but not so nutty that anyone feels compelled to defend Leitch), or there’s a glaring double standard.

(There’s also the possibility no one listens to NPR.)

Blazers Vs. The Sign Vigilantes

Posted in Basketball at 5:06 pm by

The Oregonian’s John Canzano on the city of Portland’s edict that the Blazers remove a 128-foot by 60-foot vinyl banner from a steel grain silo across the street from the Rose Garden :

Attaching the banner in a way that no sign had been attached to the silo before is what city electrical inspectors term a “structural alteration,” which is why the NBA franchise has been notified that it must remove the sign by Feb. 8 or pay a $100-per-day fine.

Understand, Blazers owner Paul Allen has attempted, unsuccessfully, on various occasions to purchase this silo. He owns the riverfront land adjacent to the structure, and the people who work for him are exploring uses for the land. But the Blazers’ primary use for the grain silo, to date, is to carry the hopeful message of the franchise.

Now, it’s carrying a broader question: Portland really is a strange place, isn’t it?

City sign inspectors don’t drive around looking for non-compliant signs, see. In fact, even if a sign doesn’t meet regulations, the inspectors usually won’t issue a directive to remove the sign unless a citizen complains about it by telephone, e-mail or fax.

Which means that some careful citizen, probably one driving on Interstate 5, looked over, saw the team’s “Rise With Us” sign dangling from the silo and decided having the sign removed was a worthwhile cause.

Said John Hauck, a senior inspector: “We have what you’d call a few sign vigilantes who, if something doesn’t appear to be within the law, call us and complain.”

For those about to sneer, “get a life”, rest assured one can be a concerned member of the community and also maintain a very rich cultural existence.

SNY’s Pending 3-Headed Monster

Posted in Sports Radio, Sports TV at 3:40 pm by

Newsday’s Neil Best, for a moment neglecting Joe Buck’s claim that he’s not got a scripted anti-Randy Moss rant at the ready, drops the following tidbit into your afternoon consomme :

I’m hearing SNY is planning some sort of new show (and/or shows) that likely will feature Joe Benigno (above), Scott Ferrall and Chris Carlin, who have become regular personalities on the station.

“I’m hearing” is a cool-sounding way of passing along (well-informed) whispers and making it sound insider-ish.

I hate to take issue with Mr. Watchdog, but there’s nothing “regular” about Joe Benigno-Gazingo’s personality.

Carton would be well advised to steer clear of the gig. He’s already carrying Boomer Esiason Kim Jones on his back 5 mornings a week, and any program that would pair Benigno and Scott Ferrall is doomed. If the former’s face doesn’t terrify SNY viewers, increased exposure to the latter’s voice should do the trick.

We’ll Not See A Finer Commercial Sunday Evening

Posted in Beer, History's Not Happening, The Marketplace at 2:42 pm by

I mean no disrespect to Tommy Heinsohn when stating the above advertisement represents his finest televised moment.

The Author Of The Paragraph Below Will Not Be Speaking At The 2008 EMP Pop Conference

Posted in Blogged Down, Gridiron, record collector disease at 1:25 pm by


(photo by Eve Prime)

Let’s see if CSTB’s savvy readers can identify which great thinker was responsible for this :

The Super Bowl stinks because the halftime show always highlights someone who personifies everything that football isn’t ” melodic and graceful. Football is violent. Is it too much to ask that the music match the visuals? Prince, Justin Timberlake and Tom Petty are all talented artists, but in a game that can end with ruptured spleens, torn ligaments and concussions, I would like to hear an appropriate tune. Maybe some Pantera? How about some Maiden? What could be a better setting for an NWA reunion? Minus Eazy, of course.

was it…

a) Colin Cowherd
b) Rob Dibble
c) Jay Mohr
d) Stephen Merritt
e) none of the above?

No Googling!