Yes, the Browns game today was total crap. Hell, the season has pretty much been total crap and as a lifetime fan of the franchise, sometimes it is just so hard to be a Browns fan. Regardless, I am in it for life. I would not have it any other way.
Don’t worry, my site is not turning into a sports page or anything, I do, however, want to share a fun hoodie my pal Nick from Flagrant-T came up with. It is simple, to the point, and aimed at all you frustrated Browns fans out there:
I have already rocked mine last week when coming home from my trip to Austin and a whole slew of people got a kick out of it. With today’s loss, it is safe to say I will be wearing this tomorrow to work.
It’s been a while since I have done an interview here on BHP but I thought I would make it up all you readers out there by creating a super interview. I have been wanting to do this for a while now and thank the fine women who make up the Northeast Ohio Rock ‘n’ Roller Girls.
Seeing women of all shapes and sizes skate as a pack on a oval track is indeed something that everyone needs to see. With music playing, announcers calling out the match, and the fans cheering their team the bout is just as entertaining as any other sport out there.
Just in case you have no clue what I am talking about, I speak of roller derby. Specifically women’s indoor flat track.
If you have not heard of roller derby you are missing out. Maybe you live under a rock or just don’t get out much but roller derby is a pretty big deal. Don’t agree? Check it out live at least once, I promise you will think differently.
Not only do the girls skate their hearts out all season long but they also get involved with charity and local organizations. Honestly, out of all of the sporting events I have been to in my life I have never seen the wholeheartedness that is seen during a roller derby bout. When you go to a match you are also going to a fundraiser of sorts with the money collected from the raffle tickets and beer sales sold by the roller derby grils during and after the bouts.
Last October I attended a roller derby match at the Summit County Fairgrounds. The bout was between the Northeast Ohio Rock ‘n’ Roller Girls and the Buffalo, NY Assault City Roller Girls. Along with a nice sized crowd, I cheered the home team on to a victory. It was actually the final bout of the season so not only was it a pretty important win for the team but also a start to a well deserved break.
For those of you who do not think roller derby is a sport you really need to reconsider. The girls wear helmets just like football players do, elbow and knee pads like pro skaterboarders wear, and mouth guards (do you see what I am going here?). To top that, their playing grounds are flat concrete surfaces where they compete to score points by pushing, blocking, and shoving the opposing team.
I watched girls fall hard on to the concrete that night only for them to get back up and jump back in the game. A couple of them took falls so hard I don’t think I would have gotten up myself but they were in it to win it and brushed themselves off and jumped back in the game. It was an exciting event with the fans going crazy and both teams trying their hardest for a win. When all was said and done the final whistle was blown and the Rock n Roller Girls finished their final bout of the year with a victory.
So who are these girls? Some are moms and wives, some are students, and many carry successful full time jobs. They are people just like us and they do not hide their secret of roller derby status like they belong in Fight Club. They are good people with families and friends with their own lives outside of the rink.
Regardless of what their day gig is or how they live their lives, they all are part of a sport where practice is mandatory and teamwork is key. When the team comes together they become their own supportive family not only helping one another but also helping the community.
Recently I had the privilege to get some questions answered by a slew of the wonderful girls of the Northeast Ohio Rock & Roller Girls as well as a couple of their referees. Instead of interviewing one team member I decided to interview as many as I could. Be prepared, this is a long read…
I end my weekend tonight watching The Rock on TNT, you know Nicolas Cage and Sean Connery and bio-hazard chemical warfare fun. I am not interested in the Oscars one bit and NASCAR has overlapped on to my Seth MacFarlane Sunday night ritual… Not as exciting as I wanted tonight to be but I will deal with it.
I watched a couple of movies over the weekend that really entertained me…
First up was Zack & Miri Make A Porno. This movie was rude, crude, and hilarious. If you have not seen it and are a Kevin Smith fan, or even a Seth Rogen fan, check it out. I laughed my ass off. After the movie my wife went to bed and I decided to check out the deleted scenes. While funny they lasted almost 2 hours!!! It was longer than movie itself.
This morning I checked out Jason Statham in Death Race. The glorified Fast & The Furious kept me entertained with the dark action, but that was about it. I liked the concept of the movie and it kind of freaked me out because I could totally see it happening one day…
My weekend was not spend in front of the TV entirely. I admit it was relaxing and I could have gotten more accomplished but sometimes you need a weekend off.
In an attempt to be productive I went to Big Lots! this morning to get some dog treats and just see what junk was around. I walked past what looked like a bn of junk DVDs and thanks to curiousity having the best of me, started looking through the titles. Good thing I decided to do that because I found Singles and Reality Bites for $3.00 a piece. Score.
I also have been cooking/baking a lot. In an attempt to save money I have been trying to eat out less and make interesting meals at home. Some of my meals have been next to delicious while others need some help by yours truly. For example the chilled peanut Chinese salad was ruined when I added a wee too much garlic salt into it but the oatmeal walnut chocolate chip cookies were a great success. Earlier in the week I fried up tofu and added it to a spicy dirty rice…delicious. Next up I am trying what Kelly & Jose over at Sensory Overload had the other day.
This week looks to be a good week. I am getting a free meal at the Texas Road House thanks to my employer. I helped move some 300 computers last month and as a thank you they are taking me out to eat with some of the other guys that helped me out. Good deal. Friday I am going to my first hockey game ever and hope to see the Lake Erie Monsters win.
So that ends my weekend. Sean Connery and Nicholas Cage saved the day…
Good night Cleveland and the rest of the internet world.
Out of all the places I could have been born, I was born in Cleveland, OH. Some may find it difficult or depressing to grow up in a suburb of a dying steel manufacturing city but I myself consider it fortunate. I like where I am from and even though I sometimes wish to live life elsewhere I think, in fact I know, I would miss the city of Cleveland.
Realistically I am admitting that Solon was the city I was born and raised. I grew up in that city and while doing so I saw change. By the year 2000 the population doubled and Solon turned more upper class, a bracket I never fit in. Restaurants and stores were built on land that once housed the city’s first school or marshland. New schools had to be built to house all the children that were brought in to the city. It was change I did not agree with.
One change I dealt with was new neighbors. I watched the forest next to my parents property turn in to a upper class haven full of rude arrogant people I never called neighbors. How arrogant? Let’s just say one of the features of this high rolling development were man made ponds in which one of the new residents saw it as a jet ski racetrack… The successful ass also allowed his kids to destroy my folks property and would frequently dump his yard waste. I never rebelled at him as much as I wanted to but I was happy to hear he had to leave that house for breaking the law. What a jerk.
The good thing about Solon is that I had made amazing friends, many of which I still am friends with today. My neighbors growing up put up with parties my brother and I threw. Growing up was great as a kid but when I turned into a teenager and Dunkin Donuts kicked us out of their parking lot or we wanted to see a show Cleveland was just a short drive away.
Solon was a great city to grow up in. Next to a great school system, there were awesome shops including the one of most missed music shops ever, Disc Den (rip). When I was a kid that was the place to go. Mike at Disc Den ran a great shop but could not afford to move on with sales dropping due to corporately run book stores that sold music as well (yes, I worked there, but in my defense I was a barista!!!).
Important people came from Solon as well. Mike Cartellone, once the drummer of Damn Yankees and now current drummer of Lynyrd Skynyrd, was from Solon and he even played football with me when I was just a little tyke. There were even some pro football players born in the city including Kim Herring who was a few grades above me.
So why did I even mention I am Cleveland and where am I going with this? You might be wondering why I just told you my life story and I know it was not that good so let’s continue…
When you grow up you meet friends and lose friends, it’s a life long process. Luckily my close friends happened to like music and hanging out. As soon as I was old enough I started going to Cleveland to see shows. I can not even tell you how many shows I have been to in my life time but I can tell you most of the most memorable took place in the mid to late 90’s, right about the time when I was a raging punk rocker.
Cleveland has some great music venues. I can write all day about the shows I have seen. Bands that were nothing and are huge now I got to see as they hardly had anyone in the crowd cheering for them. Venues that have shut down or moved to the other side of town, been there.
I really don’t feel like writing about all that right now.
I want to talk about two things that recently happened to me that remind me why I like Cleveland so much:
First off…. The Cleveland Browns. I am a Brownie for life and win or lose will always support the team. I recently witnessed the Browns spank the Giants Monday Night Football style. It was a great experience. Even if almost everyone there was drunk and belligerent well before the game even started it was fun.
My brother and I got a pair of tickets so we decided to truck down early to tailgate. As we made way to the community lot we passed the Great Lakes Science Center and the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame Museum. I got to see Johnny Cash‘s tour bus parked in front of the Rock Hall and after checking to see if it was unlocked (I wanted to go on a joyride) we continued to a parking lot about a mile away from the Cleveland Browns stadium.
Tailgating was a treat alone with some folk starting their partying ritual at 9:00am, almost 12 hours before kick off. By the time my brother and I met up with some friends at the community lot around 6:30pm there were people falling over drunk but smiling on the way down. Everyone was decked out in Browns attire and DJs for a day were doing their best to play requests. Food was being consumed and everytime a brave Giants fan walked past crowds of folk would stop during mid beer bong to point and call that fan an a$$h@le. It was funny to see so many people get into it. It was the first time I engaged in tailgating and it certainly will not be the last.
The game itself was even more insane. Yelling and screaming and more drinking. I can honestly say the Browns have the greatest fans ever. We sat pretty far up but it didn’t matter. All the fans around me, many season ticket holders, were great to cheer along with as the Browns beat the Giants 35 to 14.
Another reason I like Cleveland so much… Last Friday’s trip to meet Derek Hess.
I’ve already interviewed the man himself but this past Friday I had the pleasure of meeting him in person.
Along with my wonderful wife, my friends Matt and Adam joined us to a book store in Tremont, a historic neighborhood just outside of downtown Cleveland. We all went to Visible Voice Books where I get to meet Derek Hess and author Kent Smith who both came together and wrote Please God Save Us. Both gentlemen were very kind and autographed my book that Matt purchased for me (thanks pal!). Kent Smith even asked to get a photo of us all where I look like a complete retard in it (see below for proof)! Once I read the book a few times over I will be sure to post something on here about it. If you are a fan of Derek Hess and wish to venture into his politically charged art, you need this book.
After Visible Voice books we went to nearby Lakewood and had dinner at a local bar. The name escapes me at this time but we dined outside at the patio. Even though it was a tad on the chilly side there were gas powered outdoor heaters that kept us warm.
We all sat around and chatted as we ate our meals. While hanging out, I could not help but think how much I have enjoyed Cleveland all these years. It seems like there is always something to do when you you venture in the city. There is also more still to be done and I know there will be many more trips to that wonderful city.
Like I said I could talk all day about Cleveland but just not today. I am sure other folk from Cleveland can agree it is a hell of a city with a lot to offer.
This was my story, for now. Here’s some other photos I took with my crappy camera (except the 1st, that was taken w/ Kent Smith’s camera):