Happy 4th of July

Hope everybody has a great holiday weekend.  Take some time and spend it with family and friends.    Forget about work and any nagging issues for a few days

Was surprised a happy to see Culture Club performing on the TODAY show this morning.   Boy George can still sing with the best of them

Culture Club on Today Show (07/02/15)

Last nights Mets game against the Cubs was hard to watch.   I am not sure what I would do to get the team out of the current funk, but would definitely do something.  Just to change the current attitude.   Not sure if something like getting rid of the hitting coach would help, but it may be worth a try.   Im still not sold on Terry Collins being the long term manager, so would consider letting him go, again, more to just change the attitude of the team.   I am happy that as of now, upper management are not considering trading the young pitchers.    I would rather they pick up some decent utility players (who should be able to be picked up relatively cheap – Something the Yankees have done for years)

I am willing to wait until the All Star Game, but if they don’t make some kind of move by then, it will quickly become Football Season for NY Mets Fans which would be a shame for the young pitchers, and the few players like Daniel Murphy who have been around for a while and should be given the opportunity to win

Finished “The Martian” by Andy Weir.   One of the best books I have read in a while.   Really well written, and kept me on the edge of my seat.   I had avoided the trailer for the movie coming this fall (Starring Matt Damon).   For those of you who want to watch, here it is

While on vacation, saw in the paper (I am one of the few who still enjoys getting a paper in the morning), that President Obama would be on the Marc Maron Podcast

Marc Maron Podcast

I listen to podcasts, but have never listened to this one, so I thought I would give it a listen.  I really enjoyed the interview. It was very interesting to hear the president in this format.  He sounded very personal and down to earth.

Finally, Big Brother is back on CBS, and I am enjoying it again.  There is something about it that I find intriguing.    Will write more about it as the season progresses.

Thats it for now.

Happy 4th of July Holiday, and will catch you on the other side

Andy

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And away we go

Finishing up a Friday before going on a much needed vacation next week.   Will be staying somewhat local for the 1st time in a while.    Usually head down south (Hilton Head Island, or Rehoboth beach in Delaware).   This time it just down the Parkway to the Jersey shore.  Looking forward to relaxing for the week.    Looking forward to having family and friends come by and join us throughout the week.

The NY Mets continue their strange season.  In years past, the were horrible at home but played decent ball on the road.  This year they are playing great at home, but just awful on the road.  Getting blown out by Pittsburgh a few weeks back, and Toronto the past few weeks takes away all the good they have at home.    I hate to really complain since they are in 1st place, but will they be able to keep things up in the 2nd half.   And if terry Collins the long term solution.  I dont think so, so at some point the will need to decide if they want to go for it this year (keep Collins and look to add some veteran players) or give up on the year and get rid of Collins and bring in a new manager).   Time will tell

See that the Amazing Race will again be doing a live send off for next season.   This time it’s in LA instead of NYC

The next adventure begins Monday in CA! Join us at the Venice Boardwalk Graffiti Wall to send off the teams starting @ 8am PT.

Still mad at myself for not making it to NYC for the live send off last year.   Yes it was at 3:00 AM EST, but still should have made the trip.  Hopefully next time the start the Race in NYC, AverageAndy will be there as a contestant.  (Have applied with my sister, still waiting for the call  :)

Sat down to watch Wayward Pines last night, and realized it wasn’t on because FOX has the US Open Golf and it’s on in Prime Time from Thursday – Sunday.   I actually like the idea of having the Golf on in prime time and thinks it will be fun to watch Sunday night.   Not sure if I like Joe Buck doing the golf.  I do like him for both Football and Baseball, but this might be too much.    Almost feel like FOX should have given somebody else a chance (Same with Curt Menefee – Let him do the football pre / post game shows, and get somebody else to do golf)

Looks like I might not be alone

Early thoughts on FOX / FOX Sports 1 US Open Golf Coverage

More to come…

Andy

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Of all the Charlie Browns in the world, you’re the Charlie Browniest

Been a huge fan of Peanuts forever and am really looking forward to this

Looks like they did a great job of mixing new computer animation with the feel of the old cartoons

Haven’t been to the movies in while, but between the Peanuts movie, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Terminator: Genisys,  Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation,  James Bond: Specter, and The Martian, I may be spending a lot of time in the theater

Will try to post reviews for the movies I get to see

On a music note, great to see that Bruce Dickenson of Iron Maiden has been give a clean bill of health following cancer treatment for a tumor on his tongue.   They just announced they are releasing a new album “Book of Souls” in September and will be touring in 2016.  One of the all time great bands, and another band that deserves to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Iron Maiden – Book of Souls

Also looking forward to catching U2 at Madison Square Garden in July (8 Sold out shows).

U2 2015 World Tour

Will post again tomorrow before heading to the Jersey shore for well deserved vacation

Andy

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Wednesday

Boston in Atlantic City NJ 2015

Boston in Atlantic City NJ 2015

Had a great time at the Boston concert last Saturday in Atlantic City.   The band was great and continues to rock.   Have friends who say “I have no interest in seeing them since Brad Delp died”, and “Who’s the lead singer now”.   Also get a lot of “They’re still around, thought they broke up in the 80’s”

Well, they continue to tour and out out new music (latest was 2013’s Life, Love & Hope)

Boston (band) Wikipedia

Them and other great bands such as Cheap Trick,  Styx, and Foreigner continue to show that great music and musicians hold up over time.   These bands deserve to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

This site has some great info on bands that are eligible, and their chances of getting in

Future Rock Legends

Gotta run and do some work.   Will try to write more later today

Andy

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Not much new today

Its a overcast and raining Friday here in NJ.

Been a pretty good week.   Got some stuff done and was able to take some nice walks after work.   Really enjoyed the latest This American Life Podcast (Episode 558 – Game Face)

http://www.thisamericanlife.org/

Some great and inspirational stories.  Also liked the cover of Lady Gagas “Poker Face” at the end of the episode.

I know I’m late to the party, but am glad I started listening to podcasts including “This American Life”   It has opened my eyes to some wonderful places and stories and reinforced how big the United States (and the world) are.   Combined with watching “The Amazing Race” and I feel much more alive and inspired to travel and see and experience places.

The Mets are doing just enough to keep Terry Collins around as manager.  They should be better than they are, but it’s tough to complain when they are in 1st place this far into the season.   They are kind of frustrating to watch as they should be better than they are.   Would love to see them get on a little hot streak and win 8 or 10.   Would then start to make things fun as we head into the All Star Game.

Have to admit, I was a bit shocked when I saw the starting lineup for the Arizona Diamondbacks last night against the Mets.   I have followed baseball my entire life, and play in Fantasy Baseball Leagues, but I had never heard of most of their players (Other than Paul Goldschmidt, and recently acquired Jarrod Saltalamacchia)

http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/gametracker/boxscore/MLB_20150604_NYM@ARI

Don’t know if it’s due the Diamondbacks not being that good, not in a major market, or if they are just a nondescript team.

Thats all for now.  Will be back next week with some thoughts on my trip to Atlantic City to see Boston.

Andy

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Friday

Hope everybody had a good week back after the holiday.

Few random thoughts

The NY Mets showed a little spunk by taking 3 straight from the awful Phillies after a horrible weekend series in Pittsburgh.   The 1st thing a winning team needs to do is beat the bad teams (teams you know you are better than).   This has been a problem of  the Mets the past few seasons.   The 2nd thing a winning team needs to do is win at home (another problem the Mets have had the past few seasons).  This has kept the Mets in the discussion of play-off teams.  Im hoping they can keep it up this weekend against another bad team (Miami) before heading to the left coast.   In the past this they would definitely lose 2 of 3 in this spot.  This year seems a bit different, so lets see what they can do

Looking forward to seeing the band Boston next week.   They always put on a great show so should be a lot of fun.   Will be the 5th different venue seeing them (Continental Arena, PNC Bank Art Center (twice), MusikFest – Riverstage,  MusikFest – SteelStacks, and Trump Atlantic City).

After a rocky start, I am actually entertained by Wayward Pines on FOX.    Looks like I will be sticking with it for its 10 episode run.  Still a bit contrived, with lots of stuff taken from other shows, but just strange enough to keep me guessing.

Andy

PS – See the Lehigh Baseball team made the NCAA Tournament, and plays LSU  – Go Mountain Hawks

http://www.lehighsports.com/news/2015/5/28/BB_0528152044.aspx

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My Thoughts on Survivor and The Amazing Race (And Happy Memorial Day)

Both Survivor and The Amazing Race wrapped up another successful season.   Both shows continue to set the standards for reality TV shows.   Here’s hoping they continue for many more years

Don’t know how I feel about Mike winning Survivor.    Didn’t really like him throughout the season, but have to admit he did play a great game.   He gave 100% at the individual immunity challenges (Don’t forget he did throw one of the group challenges), and was always thinking of his best moves.   He worked hard around camp and seemed to genuinely care about the other contestants.   He did come across a bit arrogant and self centered, but you need some of that if you want to win the game (and not just take it as a free adventure).   I probably would have voted for him over Carolyn (who should have realized she was at the bottom of her alliance, and tried to make some sort of move to at least show she had an idea where she stood),  and Will, who really didn’t do much other than not make waves with the wrong people.

At the end, I was actually rooting for Rodney, and it would have been fun to see him in the final 3 and how he would have handled the jury questions.   And I have no problems with him  voting for Will.   He made it to the Jury and can vote any way he wants.  Seen some people who were upset how he voted.   To bad.   Just another reason why Survivor is such a great show, and great study of people

Enjoyed watching the Ponderosa Videos of the players who made the Jury.  Gives you a different perspective, and a good insight on the player’s true views and thoughts about the game.  Was interesting to see how people like Joe were upset, not for not winning, but for not making it to the loved ones part.   And players like Jenn who simply treated this like a free vacation and something to do for a few weeks.    Would really like to see how I would react to making it to the jury.   Would I be happy, upset, or just glad to be there.  Hopefully I’ll never know and never see Ponderosa but instead last all 39 days as a contestant

Always enjoy the live Reunion Show (Still remember how awful the early ones hosted by Bryant Gumbel were – Who ever decided to let Jeff Probst host was a genius)

http://variety.com/2000/tv/news/gumbel-to-host-survivor-reunion-on-cbs-1117785232/

Liked the way the announced the cast for the next Season  (and happy that some of my favorites, Kelly, Kimmy, Keith, Vitas) were selected.   I did think they spent too much time on Dan and his complaints about the way he was edited (But did like the way the pulled a 60 minutes on him by showing him the unedited footage).   But felt it was a bit unfair to the early players who didn’t get any air time at all.

All and All, it was a great season, and can’t wait for next season to start.

PS – Will be submitting my next audition video in a few weeks for future seasons.   Fingers crossed that one day, somebody will be writing a blog about how great a game AverageAndy played and how he Outwited, Outplayed, Outlasted everybody to take home the title of Survivor Champion

As for The Amazing Race.   Another great season.  Was happy to see Laura & Tyler win Season  26.  They ran a great race and deserved to win.  Do feel a bit sorry for Hayley and Blair.   They put aside their differences and were right there at the end.   Can’t say they would have won if Hayley had seen the Race Flags, but would have been interesting.  And I give Blair credit for not blaming Hayley, but congratulating her on a job well done.  Need more people like that who can see and appreciate the good and ignore the bad

Its so much fun watching each week with my daughter (Who is becoming a bigger fan than me).    The show continues to show how fun and exciting the world can be, and how we all should take any opportunity we have travel and experience things.    Would love the opportunity to be able to see the places and the people along the race.    My sister and I would make a great team, both as competitors and as interesting and fun contestants.

Already looking forward to next season

PS – Was at my In-laws last week, and my Father in-law had a picture of Australia on his wall.   While looking at the map, I talked to him about the trip they took to Australia years ago.  I have always wanted to travel to Australia (and New Zealand) just looking at the map got me excited.   Never realized how big Australia is, and that there are lots of remote areas along the western coast that would be interesting to try and visit.  And I still want to make it to New Zealand and go to Burger Fuel and have a Bastard Burger  (as seen on an earlier season of The Amazing Race)  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burger_Fuel

Thats all for now and thanks for reading

Have a Great Memorial Day Holiday Weekend.   Relax and enjoy the time off with family and friends

Will write more next week

Andy

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