Crap! (No, It’s Not About My Technological Incompetence)

I meant to do something spectacular when Center Holds It picked up its 100,000th hit. (Like what? I don’t know like what. Maybe launch my cat out of a homemade catapult*, light a fart on fire**…I dunno…something I don’t usually do. Man, I really need to get that digital video recorder…that and a Tivo. Working on it.)

Anyway, last I checked, we had reached 100,450. No, those aren’t “mad, sick numbers” – to give an example, I think Soccer by Ives hit 700K in just a couple months – but they’re still surprising, to me at least. I would’ve been thrilled with 50K at this point in time.

So, to pat all three of us on the back, way to go Ryan and Breton. And special thanks to Ryan for bringing it all together.
* Of course I’m joking. A) I don’t have a catapult and B) I like my cat…more or less.

** Don’t even know how to do this, though I hear there are plenty of instructional videos on Youtube. But, yeah, I do want a digital video thingy.

100,000 hits! Thanks Readers!

I’m sure I speak for Jeff and Breton when I say thanks to everyone for making this site take off the way it has. Since we went live in August we’ve been slowly rising in the number of daily visits to our site, which now teeters around 1,000 depending on the amount that we post. Today we officially went over 100,000 hits, which says to me that we’ve got a good thing going around these parts.

When I was writing back at Lets Go Buffalo this summer, sick of looking at 40 hits a day, I decided to test the waters and see if anyone else wanted to get in on a multi-pundit football site.  I sent out tons of emails, but only Jeff and Breton actually got back to me.  We talked for a few days and then I posted the site and it was up and running.

When we started this site, we wanted to have a place where you could get all sorts of football news in one place. With Jeff’s coverage of MLS, Breton’s coverage of the Premiership, Ligue 1, the Eredivise and International games, and my coverage of La Liga, stupid You-Tube videos, and everything that is Spain, we’ve got a solid core of readers that make it worthwhile.

Blogging is something that everyone can do, but not everyone can do well. I make no claims to my ability as a writer, but I know that I love football and that is why I blog here. So many sites start up and then go post-less for months, but on CHI, we maintain a steady stream of daily posts (thanks to the machine that is Jeff). So many blogs come and go, but this one is here to stay.

The reason this post means something is because of the readers. Thanks for the comments and the ideas/arguments/disagreements/jokes/and everything else in between. Keep them coming and make sure to let us know if there is something you want us to focus on in the future, we are always open to new ideas. The more everyone comments, the more we learn and the better the site will be!

Now I’m back to Linguistic Typology and Universals, while my roommate yells at the Jamaican national team.

Random, Personal Gripe

So, today, I made my latest attempt to set a VCR.  The plan was to record Jamaica v. Costa Rica.  The plan has fallen through.

Of my past, oh, six attempts to program the VCR to record, five have failed.  I have left the cable box on the wrong channel.  I have forgotten to turn off the VCR.   I have set the wrong time – as happened today.  I have just flat-out forgotten to do anything at all.

When I was younger, I used to get such a kick out of watching high school teachers and, especially, college professors struggle to make their VCR work.  I have laughed with my friends about how, having mastered a tape recorder, these people should have no trouble with the VCR.  Oh, how we laughed.

Today, I am that teacher.  I am that college professor.  I am a freakin’ moron.  Or, just possibly, has it always been nothing more than a function of age?

And, yeah, I know the punchline to all this is, what the fuck am I doing still using a VCR?  And this one eats tapes like Kobayashi eats frickin’ hot dogs.

So, no Jamaica/Costa Rica game to view or pick apart.  On the upside, this should leave plenty of time to positively dissect U.S. v. Mexico.

Preseason Results, Part One

It seems wise for me to keep current on which teams are doing what in their preseason warm-ups. Then again, if my memory of how accurately the NFL’s preseason tracked regular season results holds, this could very well be one of the least relevant measures going. And, for the record, I haven’t given so much a half-a-shit about the NFL since the early 1990s.

But I find ’em interesting, so I’ll track ’em, as well as mentioning anything about the games that caught my eye. I haven’t decided on a schedule for these – e.g. weekly, or as they come (leaning toward the former) – and I’ll work on a punchier title for the feature over the weekend.

That said, here’s the latest:

I’ve already flagged the first pre-season game I noticed this season: the Kansas City Wizards’ 3-0 win over the U.S. U-17s. And, this morning, comes word of DC United drawing against Toronto FC, 1-1. Of interest in that one – for me, anyway – is the Ronnie O’Brien sighting. Sure, it’s nice that Danny Dichio scored the goal, but O’Brien meant so much for Toronto’s offense in ’07.

OK, more to come as I see them.

BONUS: Impressed as I am by “GasBGon’s” Flatulence Filter as a product, I appreciate the testimonials so much more:

“I cannot believe it, but the damn pillow actually works!!!!!!!!”

U.S. v. Mexico: Parting Shot

UNDERRATED: Tequila shots for every goal.”

That came from a clever over/under feature from and my only response to that is, “Sir, yes sir! What brand, sir?!”

The same piece included the following, which I appreciate:

OVERRATED: Refusing to call this game a ‘friendly.'”

Tee, hee, hee…

Now, I know I’ve spent the past week doing my level, if unconscious, best to deflate the hype on tonight’s U.S. Mexico game (see: LINK, LINK, and LINK). Happily, the hype machine carried on over all that. In my defense, however, I’m not totally obtuse. I mean, I understand why U.S. soccer fans – simple partisanship/nationalism aside – get up for games against Mexico. And this was framed very nicely by that cat, Landon Donovan (at the bottom of the WaPo’s preview: Continue reading

Crew TSID*: Lars Ricken?

(* “This Shit Is Depressing” seemed more apt than the usual, “This Shit Is Important.” Read on…)

I think it was Monday that MLS Rumors reported on the possibility that the Columbus Crew would add former Borussia Dortmund player Lars Ricken to their roster. Figuring nothing would come of it, I sat on it for a few. The post’s cracks about Ricken being past it only made more sense of that.

With Covering the Crew reporting the next day that Ricken will join the Crew in Florida, the story moves from “possibility” to real-life trial – though I have to confess I’m even more baffled by the Crew’s decision. Here’s why:

“Ricken, who scored a goal in Dortmund’s 3-1 victory over Juventus in the 1997 Champions League final, was demoted to Dortmund’s reserve team last year and later said he would retire from professional play. He currently works in the Bundesliga club’s front office.

Um, what?

OK, to give the benefit of the doubt, Ricken isn’t riding some piddly club’s bench; Dortmund was The Poop a few years back. Still, 31 and already in the FO?

I doing my best to read something other than desperation in this…it’s not coming easily. But, like most Americans, I love second chances. Prove me wrong, Lars. Prove me wrong.

BONUS: I believe it’s important to wash down bad news with something, um, wonderful. Lord only knows, then, why I’m passing on this. In the middle of a Drunk Celebrity Countdown, there’s a clip of the late, drunk Oliver Reed going nuts on some English talkshow (he is dead, right? Yep and some time ago). The most priceless moment comes at the end, when someone screws up the courage to ask Reed why he drinks. Good answer….

And there’s some grim viewing in that countdown…let’s just say the infamous David Hasselhoff video tops off the Parade of Defeat.

Rapids TSII: Out of the Goodness of Their Hearts…

…the Colorado Rapids FO has deigned to release their preseason training schedule to great, unwashed masses. In a case that looks a little like putting on airs, they play up the Arsenal FC connection quite a bit. Well, I once talked a random steward into letting me walk around inside Everton’s Goodison Park (provided I didn’t touch….no, don’t look even look at it…the pitch), so I’m less impressed with that than I might have been…though I suspect the Rapids players enjoy slightly better access.

Alternately, the Rapids organization could be playing up the “Arsenal connection” to distract from the relative dearth of preseason warm-up games. Now, I didn’t read this thing closely (press releases make me sleepy), but I counted only two preseason games for the Rapids: one against Real Salt Lake (February 22) and another against the Chicago Fire (March 22). (pssst…you can schedule more games. It’s OK. I mean, look at Toronto FC’s preseason obstacle course.)

In other Rapids news, it appears that Christian Gomez is coming…but, as the Black Panther blog points out, very, very slowly. I hope it’s not cold feet. Seriously. I have to watch the Rapids this year…

BONUS: Rules for alcoholic chess. A good game, I suppose, but it doesn’t hold a candle to some featured in this drinking games collection run in The Portland Mercury. I think my favorite is Aussie Coin Flip. The rules:

“Take turns calling heads or tails and flipping the coin. If it lands on your side, your opponent(s) take a shot. If it doesn’t, you do. The first person to puke is the loser, and “has to get a smack across the head.” (Hey, we didn’t make the rules.)”

Along with the Mercury, I naturally encourage everyone to drink responsibly and to know their limits…all while sowing the seeds of wickedness…