76ers – Sevyn Streeter

I was at the 76ers game Wednesday. A day of renewal. A day we were supposed to see the first pick of the 2016 draft but instead were treated to finally seeing Joel Embiid and Dario Saric. Two players drafted in 2014 who had not yet played for the Sixers.

I could tell you about that, and how happy I am that Embiid seems more than capable or that I walked by him Tuesday night around the Ben Franklin parkway and got extremely excited. I was there at the game and saw a Sixers dancer sing the national anthem. Immediately I thought that something happened, that there was some sort of #blacklivesmatter protest planned and things had gone in direction that wasn’t necessarily in their (perceived) best interest.

I would like to say that the woman who sang the national anthem did a lovely job. I hope they have Jemila as the backup at all times because she is more than capable and it’s somewhat unfortunate that the story isn’t about her.

So by now you may or may not know that Sevyn Streeter was not allowed to sing by the organization because she wore a “We Matter” jersey.

This comes not long after another BLM protest at a sixers game; albiet not a home game. It was a preseason game and nothing really of note happened so I cannot really blame the media for focusing on the protest and not the game. I know what the media focused on it because I was bombarded with it the next day.

So I cannot really blame the Sixers for not letting the story be about Joel Embiid, Dario Saric, a slightly healthy Okafor and a Sixers team that aims not to be basement dwellers; at least not on purpose. The BLM aspect would be part of the story or partly interrupt the story and who knows exactly what Ms. Streeter might have had planned besides the jersey. Either way it would definitely be covered and this NBA franchise thing is a business. If  I were running it I wouldn’t want the BLM story soaking up the internet while I’m trying to make the case that I’m a serious franchise again.

It’s an election year and I can’t watch TV without watching some sort of political bullshit ad against Trump or for Trump or against Katie McGinty or Pat Toomey or whatever the fuck. I really don’t need politics at a sports game I paid money to see ad-interrupted. Now if Embiid wanted to wear a BLM shirt or Oakafor wanted to kneel during the national anthem I support that for the most part. But to be asked to sing the national anthem and then make some sort of political statement; I’d rather hear a recording if it has to come to it, Whitney Houston preferably.

This isn’t about BLM or silencing people or sparking a debate. The debate is happening and if you’re unaware there’s social injustice in the United States you’ve probably been in a coma since the early 1400’s.  I’m not advocating for people to stop educating about the issues they believe to be important but I am saying that you may no longer be able to do that with a symbolic gesture; it’s been done to death.

So maybe they should have let her sing and I wouldn’t be writing this and it wouldn’t have sparked a debate of whether or not she should have been able to sing. One thing is obvious, the story is now about Sevyn Streeter and not BLM.

Somewhat lost in all this is the person who books the anthem singer and halftime show because things didn’t really go that well.

I’ll be the first one to tell you that I had never heard of Desiigner but I’m open to new things. I’m not really sure what this new thing was but there was a tattooed white chick dancing at the end of my row. It was energetic but they were clearly not actually performing the raps (maybe besides the yips and yaps). At least I got a t-shirt out of this, but it was a white t-shirt unfortunately which is objectively racist. Way to go Sixers 🙁

Tommy Davidson – ‘Illin in Philly

By: Billy BeerSlugger

I remember seeing this Tommy Davidson standup routine in the early 90’s and laughing my ass off, especially being that it was filmed in Philly. I still can’t figure out why Tommy Davidson never became a huge star after In Living Color. The guy is seriously funny. And the crowd for this performance was amazing.

I also, sort of miss early 90’s fashion in the black community. It celebrated African heritage, was very bright and colorful and looking back on it seems to send a very positive and unified message.

There are 5 videos from the performance, I will post the first two and put links to the remaining 3. It is definitely worth a watch if you haven’t seen it.

Tommy Davidson – Illin In Philly Part 3

Tommy Davidson – Illin In Philly Part 4

Tommy Davidson – Illin In Philly Part 5

Don’t Let Me Down

Robby Ripchord with Music

In what is arguably the greatest Beatles song ever recorded it was also the Beatles last live performance together. This version of Don’t Let Me Down was performed live on the rooftop of Apple Studios in London with onlookers from the street and passerby’s taking notice.  It sounds great given the conditions, much better than a lot of the live acts today. Paul McCartney seems at the apex of 70’s fashion and beards were certainly in style.  I’m not particularly a Beatles fan but this is an amazing song and it’s the type of music that’s just not made today or is not mainstream for sure.

Given that I watched a documentary on the Beatles last night and they are in the news being that their collection is on iTunes I though this would certainly be topical.  And given that is their last performance together it’s kind of an historic thing to watch even if you’re not into the Beatles.

Shaq doesn’t do Preseason

Sports with Bob McFlurry

Mid-October I was at a Sixers preseason game against the Celtics. A couple of friends and I split season tickets and after a mixup at the will-call window we were awarded seats in the second row behind the basket, adjacent to the visiting teams bench.

Not that I particularly care but Shaq was suited up but wearing slippers. Basically he was not going into the game for any reason and not that I can blame an 18 year veteran for not playing in a preseason game but at least put some shoes on Shaq. Paul Pierce was in street clothes, if you’re not going into the game wear street clothes. But then I thought, “Shaq can probably do pretty much whatever he wants”. I’d say that’s a fair assessment, I wouldn’t want to be the guy who has to tell Shaq he can’t wear slippers to the game.

Also, the dude in the front row who was saying “Kazaam” every time the Sixers scored got real annoying. Dude we get the Shaq movie reference, Shaq I’m sure has heard this barb throw at him a number of times and it’s pretty unoriginal. If I had to guess that fan was from Jersey.

Check out the Footwear!

Elizabeth Shue vs. Lea Thompson

By: Billy BeerSlugger

Elisabeth Shuelea_thompson

Just as we did with Omar Epps vs. Mekhi Phifer we now bring you the 80’s, female, Caucasian version of this conspiracy, Elizabeth Shue vs. Lea Thompson. This investigation was sparked by drunken conversation by myself and co-workers at a conference in Pensacola beach Fl.

It started out as a sort of trivia game, was it Lea Thompson or Elizabeth Shue in Adventures in Babysitting? Which one played in Howard the Duck or the movie Space Camp? Who had a starring role in Cocktail with Tom Cruise? Who was the lead in Hollow Man? Who was in Karate Kid and who was in Back to the Future?

The only things that were constants for me were that I knew it was Lea Thompson in the 1990’s situation comedy Caroline in the City and that Elizabeth Shue plays a hooker and gets naked with a drunken Nick Cage in Leaving Las Vegas. Other than those two pieces of data one can’t be really too sure of who was in what.

Then there was this shocker, both Elizabeth Shue and Lea Thompson are in Back to the Future: Part II. What a mindfreak that is. Who plays what character is still a mystery to me and I’m still not sure if they are even different people. Compound that with the fact that they both played in 80’s Burger King commercials and one even starred Thompson, Shue and a very young Sarah Michelle Gellar. Holy Hot Dogs Batman, shit just got real.

To me  Elizabeth Shue is clearly the better looking of the two but what if Lea Thompson was just a slightly less good looking clone of Elizabeth Shue? What if Elizabeth Shue is Lea Thompson on days when her makeup is flawless? I don’t have all the answers but try the Elizabeth Shue vs. Lea Thompson trivia game when drinking sometime, especially in lieu or talking about work.

Craigslist Adult Section

craigs_list_sex_forsale2010-med-bigBy: Billy BeerSlugger

Just so everyone knows, Craigslist has taken down the Adult Services section on their website. Now you may be thinking, “That’s good, prostitution is illegal and disgusting” and for the most or all of that equation you will be right. Prostitution is definitely illegal and Craigslist is one of the main places that people in every major city have gone to acquire an escort, get a blow job or be beaten unmercifully by a dominatrix.

On the surface, taking down a portion of a website known to harbor such activity is hailed as a victory for morals and right wing politics. However, having one place for people to go to advertise or acquire such services also gave law enforcement a one stop shop to snoop, sting and arrest the people partaking in such activities. So on one hand you have a free-ish website devoted to people providing erotic services and on the other hand the people who are posting these services are opening themselves up to arrest and prosecution if they are providing illegal services as well as the people who are responding to ads may be caught in a sting also. So does one negative and one positive equal a wash? Apparently not.

With a political season in full swing and right wing rhetoric being spewed out of every trying to be a senator/representative that is in a conservative area it put a lot of pressure on Craigslist and they eventually caved. Why? I’m not really sure. Maybe endless days in court and lawyer fees, maybe they didn’t want the bad press, maybe they figured it just wasn’t worth the hassle to let people sell sex for free essentially. Either way, the people that were frequenting the Craigslist Adult Section now have to go other places to find what they are looking for. Places the Police aren’t privy to or do not have good ways of tracking. So that when things do go wrong, someone gets hurt or killed it’s going to be that much harder to solve the case.

You can look at this things from the two angles, pro-adult section and anti-adult section and have a great argument on both sides but I’m of the mind that people will find another way to do their illegal activities, just like in the realm of illegal downloading of copyrighted data. You shut one file sharing site down and 10 more pop up and then more people know that there’s file sharing sites when they hear the news on TV that one was shut down. It’s almost better to leave the original one up and try and control that monster than tear it down and create a long line of copycats.

Anyway, that’s why we call them issues because they have two equally different but somewhat logical thought processes behind them. Whats great about this country is we are allowed the opportunity of free thinking unlike many other countries and cultures. I always find it’s best to discover both parts of the argument, look at both rationales behind the thought processes before you make an informed decision.   Don’t know why but this issue kind of reminded me of how blindly following a politician on certain issues is often not the right thing to do. They were some of the people frequenting Craigslist Adult Section to begin with.

Catch our fun take on BeerSlugger.com’s brief foray into the world of Adult Personal Ads on Craigslist.

Kings of Leon – Come Around Sundown

kings_of_leon-youth__young_manhood-frontalBy: Robby RipChord

Admittedly I came later than some but earlier than most to the Kings of Leon party. I downloaded Only By The Night the day it came out in September 2008 and it was played continually in my room and at get-togethers during the Phillies run to a World Series Championship in late October that same year. After really liking that album I downloaded their whole discography and started jamming out to Kings of Leon on the regular from then until present.

Come Around Sundown is their 4th studio album due out Oct 19th and certainly will not disappoint fans. Even though I’ve seen a bunch of reviewers say they think the album sounds like their first record Youth & Young Manhood I think it’s more of an extension of Only By The Night in terms of sound and commercial viability think. The same commercial viability and success that have some of their early followers dissociating from the band because they got too big. Fans who used to be able to pack a small venues like the Trocadero now have to choose arena rock and inflated prices to support the band or stay home.

Either way it’s a little too early for me to fall off the bandwagon. One of rocks biggest music groups will unleash one of the best albums of the year on the 19th and you can listen to it free before it’s release by clicking on the link below.

Listen to Kings of Leon – Come Around Sundown

Lebron Plays the Race Card

55454513Bob McFlurry with Sports

So Lebron James has recently come out and stated that race played a role in the amount or severity of the backlash he received stemming from his decision to leave the Cleveland Cavilers and sign along with Chris Bosh to play in Miami with Dwyane Wade.  Yes there’s always going to be a racial component to a pretty much everything dealing with multimillion dollar athletes and their coverage in the media. The media handling of issues is then fed to the sheepish American public, most of whom don’t think for themselves or read between the lines.

With that being said, Lebron James wasn’t obligated to stay in Cleveland. This is America and if he chose he could have went anywhere that would have signed him to a contract. What Lebron should understand is that being the most over-hyped sports figure in modern sports and decision he makes is magnified to an exponential level. If Žydr?nas Ilgauskas had decided to leave Cleveland it doesn’t have the same effect as the most heavily marketed player in the game (by the way Big Z is heading to Miami too). Being the so called face of the NBA comes with a lot of weight on your shoulders. You have to take the good with the bad and that includes how the media deals with you and how race is involved in that coverage.

So Lebron is right, there is a racial component of how the media dealt with him and his decision. Always has been, always will be. What James’ may or may not have taken into account is how much these kids look up to him and expect him to do the right things. I learned a long time ago that there aren’t anymore heroes, at least not advertised ones, but kids and other people who saw Lebron as infallible don’t understand why he left Cleveland. The people of Cleveland certainly have nothing to cheer about now that their home grown superstar has flown the coop, leaving Josh Cribbs as maybe the most recognizable athlete in Cleveland. Fans in Chicago, New York and New Jersey are pissed that James didn’t come to their team. Millions of people including retired NBA greats looked at his teaming with Bosh and Wade as a cop-out, as the path of least resistance to win a championship. And the fact that he had an hour-long special on ESPN to announce his decision didn’t seem like the kind of thing that even media/endorsement whore Michael Jordan would have contemplated doing. Granted these are different times.

But for Lebron to act as if the media painted him in a negative light partly due to race is ignoring the essentially free pass he’s gotten from that same media and partially because of race up until his decision to leave Cleveland. For the first time in his career he’s had to endure some national ridicule. A multi-millionaire since he was out of high school and commonly known nickname, “KING JAMES”, it couldn’t possibly be that James brought this ridicule onto himself in the way he handled changing teams.

Even if James didn’t mean to implicate that race was anything but always an issue he did it in the wrong way and gave his detractors the means to attack him further.  If he wants to be anything like his idol Michael Jordan he better shut up and start blaming things on himself instead of other people or crying about how the media is treating him. The blue collar contingent of the U.S. doesn’t want to hear a multimillionaire bitch and complain about how tough their lives are. They’ve been making fun of rich white people for decades for that reason and I will bet that African American blue collar people feel like they just lost a little bit of pride in a guy that bitches and complains like a rich white guy.