Dammit, Russell…I never thought I would agree with Coach, but it was 100% true in that “only the penitent man shall pass”. Seriously…you played the most entertaining game until the end YET AGAIN and, YET AGAIN…your arrogance cost you votes and cost you a million dollars. Did Sandra deserve to win? No…Parvati deserved to win, but the problem is that both her and Russell forgot the social element to the game of Survivor (Russell, especially). It’s not just all about making strategic decisions and getting to the end. Playing the social element of the game is a MAJOR part, as evidenced by the last two Survivor winners.
Yesterday was a REALLY difficult goodbye with Sunshine. We’ve been doing really well for so long, but I’ve had a really rough week and it all came to a head yesterday. I’m trying to work through some personal issues (internal demons that I haven’t quite found the words to write about yet), I had a couple of REALLY stressful days with the Ankle Biter’s operation, and then when I was time to say goodbye yesterday I just broke down. I couldn’t help myself…and I wish I could really put into words why I kinda lost it. I think it’s just that Sunshine brings so much joy and happiness into my life that to have to leave her yet again…especially after the rough week I had…just caught-up to me.
I’ve been thinking about the Ankle Biter all weekend, especially where I went to visit Sunshine on Thursday night so it was a 3-day weekend without hearing from him. My ex called me last night and, because she’s sick, she asked me to look after him tonight. I absolutely JUMPED at the opportunity. She told me that his speech is improving dramatically and I cannot wait to spend some time with him…some real father/son bonding time.
- I’m not losing weight and it sucks. But I’ve GOT to climb back on the wagon this week. I mean, I’ve been using my inner demons and stress from my son’s operation last week as reasons for not trying very hard. And to be honest, those things have REALLY been taking their toll on me. But I want to get back into the swing of things. I want to feel healthier…be healthier…so I guess I’m starting over again YET AGAIN. God…why does this have to be so difficult?
- Rugrat’s mom emailed me late last week to tell me that she’s getting a hysterectomy. Scary, actually. All I could say to her was that I was here for her and for Rugrat for anything they needed. I truly with her the best.
- One of the gifts I gave to Sunshine for her birthday was a cd of songs that remind me of her when I hear them. Well…one song that I left off the disc was the song I ended up getting played as a request on her favourite radio station, KOOL FM. That song was “I think we’re alone now” by Tiffany…and it’s one of those songs that make us laugh every time we hear it because it’s cheesy greatness. The thing was, she had actually made a birthday request just five minutes before I had sent in my request/dedication for her. The radio station played my song instead of hers. So I might as well end this post with the song that Sunshine actually wanted to hear initially…
- Potty training is an experience I’m never, ever going to forget. On one hand, seeing the pure joy from my son’s face when he “has to go pee” and then he ACTUALLY DOES (i.e. no running back and forth with multiple ‘false alarms’) is priceless. A “Yay!” comes out of his voice before he washes his hands, then it’s a hi-five with his dad and then back to whatever he was doing before. To join your child in that sense of accomplishment, regardless of what that accomplishment actually is, is a very cool feeling. It’s something, unfortunately, I haven’t really been able to share much with Rugrat as she lives to far away and I only see her a couple of times a year (although I helped her learn how to blow bubbles when chewing gum…so that was pretty awesome). Of course, with every success there must come some failure and frustration. In this case, the multiple trips to the bathroom “to go poo” were some extremely frustrating moments for me. Not so much on Friday night, but for three hours on Saturday morning it became (no word of lie) a trip every 10-to-15 minutes. I did my absolute best to NOT show my frustration to him, as he hadn’t gone #2 since Wednesday and was probably suffering from some kind of performance anxiety. I encouraged him…I sang to him…I let him read…I told him to relax and left the room to give him some space. It was rough. Of course, eventually that feeling of accomplishment finally made an appearance when it finally (FINALLY) happened. He was stoked…I was proud…and the next step in Ankle Biter becoming a big boy had been made.
- Last night’s finale of the Amazing Race was pretty awesome. I haven’t missed a season since it started. To me, it’s the only reality program that I’d seriously consider doing. No, wait…it’s the SECOND reality program I’d ever consider being on (the other being Big Brother, but I’m too old and too out of shape to appear on television all summer long). It’s not so much the teams, because I’m not really a huge fan of any of them this year. Rather it’s the race itself…travelling around the world to some absolutely amazing places and doing some amazing things. To me, coming in third would be an accomplishment in itself because that meant you would have travelled all over the world. In the end, Dan & Jordan pulled it off. I’m a little surprised, actually…but a couple of mistakes by the cowboys and the dating models pretty much gave it to them.
- Looks like the financing for the buyer of my house *might* take place this week. As I mentioned earlier, an offer came for my house and it was accepted. Of course, a few days later I was told that the “pre-approved financing” had not actually been approved. Well…the couple is still interested in buying and their financing looks like it’s already approved, they’re just trying to add a few bucks onto it for other things. I should hear something…hopefully good…by Wednesday.
I’ve been absolutely loving this season of Survivor. I realize that Russell is a huge asshole and a bully…I get that. But you set that aside and you simply must recognize and respect everything that he brings to the game. The strategy…the idols…winning when he needs to win…to me, he is the greatest player to never win (yet). I’m actually surprised he’s still in the game, to be honest. Fingers crossed, because I’ve got him in my Survivor pool at work.
- Sunshine’s birthday is this weekend. I think I’ve got an idea for a gift that I’m really happy with…it’s just something that I don’t know if I can pull off or not. If I can’t, it’s really gonna suck (although I think she’ll still be happy with the effort). Keep your fingers crossed, everybody.
- Oh, and because of the name of today’s post…
Sometimes I drift off at work a bit. It’s not like I actually fall asleep or anything…I just let my mind wander. But sometimes on a break or during lunch I’ll hear or read something online that sticks with me. This week has been crazy because Rugrat has been with me, and needless to say my concentration at work hasn’t exactly been 100% because I’m wanting to spend time with my daughter.
It’s been awhile since I’ve had enough downtime during the day at work to actually write down some random comments, but today is the day.
What I usually do is just jot something down and then finish these thoughts once I’m home (hence this being posted on Christmas Eve instead of, say, yesterday). And for whatever reason, people seem to enjoy my random take on the world…
- It’s been four days since the season finale of Survivor Samoa and I’m still bewildered and upset. I mean, Natalie won?? Seriously?? I understand that social politics play a major role in games like Big Brother, but it’s a rare occassion when a jury on Survivor is so envious and jaded that they take personal feelings and put them ahead of the end goal: choose the person who outwitted, outplayed, and outlasted everybody else. Russell should have won…hands down. I can’t even fathom those who feel otherwise. I mean, there are those who felt that Natalie was a nicer person and that her riding on Russell’s back was a great strategy. WHAT?? Since when has doing NOTHING been a great strategy?? And that argument holds little to no water because Mick received no votes. I mean, the guy won two immunity challenges and was just as nice and sweet and boring as Natalie was. Russell, however, not only found THREE immunity idols (TWO without having any clue, whatsoever) but was single-handedly the one responsible for the voting out of 90% of everybody else from the very beginning. He ran the show. Period. People don’t like him? That’s fine. Popularity has rarely been a major issue on Survivor. Sure, social politics play a certain aspect…that have to. But snakes win all the time because they, for the most part, play better games. It’s not about who is the most popular or honorable. It’s about who plays the GAME better…and there is zero valid argument out there that says Natalie played a better game than Russell. That’s not to say she didn’t play a good game…riding somebody’s coattails is certainly a valid stategy. But to say that her strategy was better than Russell’s? I just don’t see it.
- I went out on Friday night with Sunshine to a bar with a few friends of mine from work to hear another friend from work play an acoustic set. I gotta be honest…she wasn’t that good. But that wasn’t the thing that stuck out for me the most. This hole in the wall (and literally…this bar was exactly that) had one of those machines that you pop in a few bucks and get a stuffed animal out of. A little out of place, I guess…but whatever. Upon closer inspection, though, I found that this machine contained a bit more than just stuffed animals. It contained a blow-up doll, a big-ass vibrator, and a porn dvd. Now, this got all of us laughing and we each took a turn throwing away $1 on the off-chance of getting that vibrator…but it got me wondering afterwards just why everything else in there was a stuffed toy. I mean, wouldn’t it be more fun to put a whole bunch of adult toys in there instead? If you’re going to go for it, you might as well go all the way…AMIRIGHT? I dunno…I just found it a bit odd. And no…neither Sunshine or I won.
- Brittany Murphy was 32 when she passed away on Sunday. That’s way too young for anybody to die. Now, I was never her biggest fan so when I heard the news I just thought, “What a shame” and went on with my day. But then I saw the reactions on Twitter. Then I saw the references to drugs. See, Murphy died due to a heart attack. She has had a documented history of drug issues. People immediately went online and told the world that this is what happened when you did drugs. Perez “I’m a huge f*cking douchebag” Hilton actually had the nerve to not only blame drugs, but to also blame her husband for the death (tasteless, really). One celebrity actually blamed her weight loss on the heart attack and claimed that Hollywood’s need for rail-thin girls was the reason for the death. In actuality, there isn’t an official cause of death yet (although the coroner initially said that it appeared to be of natural causes). Regardless of what the reasons end up being (they’re awaiting toxicology results so it probably was a combination of prescription drugs…a la Heath Ledger), it just really sucks that so many people felt the need to judge Murphy before all of the details of her death had been researched. Let the poor woman rest for at least 24 hours before tweeting that “drugs kill”. Seriously. It’s something like last Sunday on Twitter that I really get a taste for just how wacked-out and morally inept the general public can be at times. It’s a shame, really. What if it was an accidental overdose? Are you still going to sit back and say that she’s an example for Lindsay Lohan? C’mon…just let the poor woman die in peace. It’s nobody’s business, anyway.
- Rugrat arrived on Monday without any incident. However, her step-father called me once she was in the air to complain about Air Canada. Y’see, where she’s only 10 (11 next month), there is an unaccompanied minor fee associated with every trip of $100 each way. This is kinda crappy, but it is accepted as required practise until she turns 12. Well, the argument presented to me was that Air Canada’s fee is to pay for an employee to walk my daughter to the terminal and wait for the plane, then walk her from the plane to the terminal to assist with luggage collection (at least that’s what her step-father told me on the phone). Now, Rugrat’s grandmother accompanied her to the terminal and waited for the plane…and then I was there to greet her and pick up her luggage once she landed. So why are we paying this $100 fee? The website states that the fee is mandatory for all children aged 8-11, but her step-father (who’s a good man, by the way) told me that he was already on the phone with Air Canada and was told that because her grandmother was the one accompanying the minor through until the gate, then we should be getting our money back because no service was actually performed. I’m not really on the side of us getting this money back because I think the rules are pretty cut-and-dry, but it’s difficult to justify paying $200 extra on every trip when you’re getting conflicting information from the company itself.
- It’s funny…when I learned that there wasn’t a real Santa Claus and I told my parents that, my number of gifts reduced dramatically the following year. My little brother told me a few years ago that he didn’t believe anymore and I told him flat out: the day you stop believing is the day your gifts will disappear!! I know it’s wrong, but he at least took my advice for one more year (lol). Rugrat is 11 next month…if she hasn’t stopped believing by now, she probably soon will. I don’t know if I’ll give her the same talk I gave to my little brother, though.
- Random Esquire wants to motorboat my girlfriend. Is it wrong that I don’t have a problem with that?
- Is it also wrong that I’m not only REALLY anticipating the 20th season of Survivor in February (it’s the “villains” vs. the “heroes”…as the shows most popular and most hated characters are invited back for one more go-round), but I’m also looking forward to all new episodes of American Idol, Lost, Glee, and Ghost Hunters International? Jeez…you’d think I’d have a life by now or something. Maybe it’s because football is ending soon…
- Speaking of football, I think I’m going with a New Orleans vs. Indianapolis match-up in the SuperBowl. I just don’t think the Vikings can beat the Saints and there is no other team in the NFC that’s even remotely as good. And on the AFC side? The Colts are simply unparalleled. There are too many “pretty good” teams and not enough “excellent” teams in the AFC, so as long as the Colts continue on their path (even if they lose a game before the end of the regular season) I just don’t see anybody else beating them in the playoffs. In the end, I think the Colts might be SuperBowl champs when all is said and done. But having said that, it certainly wouldn’t surprise me to see the Saints come out on top, either. It’s gonna be a GREAT few weeks of playoff football.
That’s all I’ve got on my mind today. Hope everybody has a wonderful holiday…whatever that holiday may be.
After 19 seasons, Survivor has really gotten to the point to where there are two schools of thought: you either still like it or you think it “jumped the shark” long ago.
I, however, am someone who actually stopped watching it for a few years because I got tired of it. I didn’t like the characters and found most of the people dull (not to mention the challenges didn’t interest me at all). I started watching again a few seasons ago when Rupert Boneham was on (Pearl Islands in 2004, I think), and have been watching faithfull ever since. I loved the All-Stars version and really enjoyed last season in Tocantins, Brazil (c’mon…it had COACH!!)…so I was definitely looking forward to last night’s season debut.
Needless to say, I wasn’t disappointed.
Last night’s episode centered around one of the most intriguing characters any reality show has ever had: Russell Hantz. Apparently, Russell is a multi-millionaire oil company owner from Houston, Texas and isn’t playing the game for the money. No…Russell is playing this game specifically to raise hell and try to win by being the dirtiest player in the history of the game.
Let’s start off with his bedtime story, shall we? While the Foa Foa tribe were cuddling up on their first night, stories were being passed around in an effort to get to know one another. Russell’s story was heart-breaking. He was living in New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina hit. His house was right next to the levies when they broke. As the water was rushing into his house, he didn’t know what to do next. It was him and his dog and his trusty ax…because being a firefighter, he knew that an ax may come in handy. So the water was rushing in faster than he could have ever anticipated and he scrambled to go up the stairs. He looked down into the murky waters for his beloved dog…but he was nowhere to be seen. He had to fight his way out of the roof of the house with his ax before finally being rescued.
Russell has never been a firefighter, didn’t lose a dog to Katrina floodwaters, and has never even lived in New Orleans.
Yes…I think it’s safe to say that this man is the new hell-raiser on Survivor. I mean honestly, this was the greatest lie told since Johnny Fairplay informed the group that his grandmother had died. But alas, he wasn’t done here.
His plan was to make his fellow teammates weak both mentally and physically so he could take advantage of them. He snuck out to the fire in the middle of the night and emptied out all of the water bottles. Yes…even his own. ALL of them. He then decided to burn random personal effects just so it would cause issues. Example? He burned a pair of socks belonging to Jaison…one of the big physical threats in the game. The next day Jaison was saying that his feet were starting to get blisters and didn’t know where his socks were.
In addition to that, Russell began making one-on-one “final two” deals with every woman on his team. He proceeded to call them weak, stupid, and pathetic. This guy was really firing on all cylinders, calling it the “Dumb Ass Girl Alliance“. Seriously.
When one of them, Marisa, told him that it concerned her that he was talking one-on-one with so many other people (i.e. she was questioning her own alliance with him), he immediately went on the warpath. He went to everybody in the tribe and told them that Marisa was coming after him and really wasn’t a person on the tribe that was to be trusted. Most of the tribe believed him, so when the Galu tribe won the immunity challenge, it all but spelled the end of Marisa’s time on Survivor.
While Ashley got a few votes, it was Marisa that ended up being voted off first.
Random thoughts from last night’s episode:
- The “other” Russell (yeah…two people with the same name this year) was voted leader of the Galu tribe, while Mick was voted leader of the Foa Foa tribe. Russell #2 (also described as a “better looking Lennox Lewis”) was doing a pretty good job leading, where Mick was pretty much a non-factor.
- SHAMBO!! This woman is an ex-marine with a mullet that would have even made Billy Ray Cyrus back in 1992 go “DAAAAMN!!!” Why the name “Shambo”? Well, her real name is Shannon and she loves wearing a headband like Rambo did back in the 80’s. Thus, she’d rather be called Shambo throughout the game.
- First impression? Shambo is a moron.
- First impression? John, the rocket scientist, really needs to STFU. Over-talkers can be early-exiters on Survivor.
- If you’re gonna trash talk another team before an immunity challenge and call them “losers”, then you better back it up and actually WIN the damn thing. Idiot.
- Ben’s got an attitude that’ll earn him enemies quickly in the game.
- Betsy might be too smart for her own good…beware of Russell!!
I thought it was a great season premiere…99% because of Russell. I mean, where do you FIND somebody like this? I initially thought that he would be playing the game too hard too quickly, but now I’m fascinated to see just what he’ll be doing next!
Did you watch the premier last night? What did you think of Survivor: Samoa?