I was planning on running Crazylegs this weekend, but then I looked online and saw I’d be paying $40 to most likely finance Barry Alvarez’s bloated salary, so I said screw it. But before coming to that decision, I did some reading up on the event and found that Ron Dayne was the race’s Grand Marshal in 2008, which is the least surprising thing ever. I feel embarrassed for Dayne when he’s introduced at Camp Randall every year just because he has nothing better to do, or when he’s signing autographs at whatever shitty appliance store happens to have its grand opening that week. No appearance is too insignificant for Dayne to extract every last ounce out of his 15 minutes. His Heisman Trophy is displayed at a goddamn Buffalo Wild Wings for fuck’s sake! What, Chili’s wasn’t low-brow enough?
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National news has been quite active for the last week-plus, and for the most part, I think the media outlets did a commendable job with their coverage—with the notable exception of CNN, which has covered the Boston bombing with all the delicateness of a monkey tossing around its own feces. I can’t help but preemptively cringe while the cable networks take the time to politicize the bombings in the dumbest ways possible. “You know,” some fool on MSNBC will say, “This wouldn’t have happened if our country had stricter immigration laws.” While we could be celebrating the resilient human spirit in the face of such tragedy, leave it to some talking head on cable to try and divide the nation five minutes later.
With warm(ish) temperatures arriving earlier this week, it feels like summer is near, or as I like to call it, the transition from bitching -about-the-cold to bitching-about- sweating. Seriously, I could have four people fanning me like I’m Cleopatra and I’d still sweat walking the 10 minutes to class. I really wish sweat was a vestigial trait like wisdom teeth, or an appendix you could just opt out of or have surgically removed. I’d give my life savings to pay for that procedure.
Before getting into the rest of the column, I’d be remiss if I didn’t first tip my cap to the late Roger Ebert, one of the foundational figures not just for film critics, but for aspiring writers everywhere. In a world where Old Guard writers like Mitch Albom get paid millions to write books that make postmenopausal women soil their granny panties, it was refreshing to see Ebert remain relevant to his dying day, embracing new media platforms and pumping out even more content than he did in his healthier years. He’ll be missed dearly, no smarm intended.
Unless you’ve had your head up your ass for the past week (not unlikely if you were in PCB), you know by now Rebecca Blank will be the new chancellor at University of Wisconsin. Which means… something. She’s expected to improve the school’s economic outlook, I think. As a columnist who specializes in cheap dick jokes and unnecessary cursing, I’m not qualified to speculate on what this news really means. In all honesty, I had no idea David Ward was British until over a year into his interim chancellorship. I am truly a terrible representation of the university.
Hey, it’s March Madness! The one time of the year where everyone becomes a manic basketball fan because low-stakes gambling and day drinking are involved! If you give a shit (you shouldn’t), I’m picking Miami to win it all. I’m definitely one of those insufferable people that will brag about what great foresight I have to make a correct pick. It’s always great to say, “See, I told you guys South Dakota State would beat Michigan. Just call me Nostradamus.”
Daylight saving time returned this weekend to remind you how useless it is. I did some research, and it turns out Ben Franklin came up with the idea, thinking extending the daylight hours would increase productivity. Ben Franklin also didn’t have a phone on which he could play unlimited games of Temple Run. Stick to flying your kite, Benny Boy, and quit messing with our clocks.
I read an article about last Thursday’s fire at Medical Sciences—which apparently closed driving routes along Henry Mall and Linden Drive, to which my biggest takeaway was, my god, Henry Mall has actually been open all this time? It might just be me, but I felt like that area has been under construction since the Clinton administration. I remember it being closed when I toured campus in high school. And it was STILL closed three years later when I had a class out on Linden. But that thing’s open now? I have the sudden urge to run through Henry Mall and up the Ag Hall stairs like I’m Rocky.
I decided to watch the Oscars Sunday and thought they started at 7 rather than 7:30 p.m. This was a brutal mistake, as I was subjected to catch most of the Red Carpet show, which made me want to tear my eyeballs out. I guess the consensus was that Jennifer Lawrence was the best dressed. That’s the same Jennifer Lawrence who later tripped over her mountain of a dress and faceplanted on the steps when she accepted her Best Actress award, perfectly illustrating the absurdity of the Red Carpet show. If I’m ever invited to the Oscars, I’m going to show up in a T-shirt and jeans just to lampoon the Red Carpet show. And then when the TV host asks me, “Who are you wearing? Dior? Armani?” I’d be all like, “The hell if I know. Probably some 10-year-old kid from a sweatshop in Indonesia.”
We’re already on Week 5 of the semester, and now I’m forced to do real work, which is bullshit. Those movies about college told me college was this beer-soaked oasis where you “can really find yourself!” Well, somebody needs to tell Old Man Ward that we’re not finding ourselves by reading this 30-page scholarly journal article that’s written in four-point font. I’m not here to learn, dammit, I’m here to rock and roll!
Movie from your childhood that still kicks ass
Welcome back to school, everybody. If you read this space in the Cardinal last semester, you may remember me as a shameless hater with a Bruce Springsteen obsession often bordering on masturbatory. Those characterizations are indeed still accurate, but this semester I plan to convey such thoughts through a series of predetermined subtopics. My hope is that it makes my writing more enjoyable to read (Note: It’s also because I’m too lazy to synthesize an original column topic every week). We’ll call it the “Wednesday Morning Hangover.” Let’s dive in.
Like many who watched the Penn State-Wisconsin football game a few weeks ago, I couldn’t avoid thinking about last year’s horrifying revelations of former Nittany Lions Assistant Coach Jerry Sandusky’s crimes against children. From the infamous 23-page grand jury indictment to the cringe-worthy phone interview with Sandusky on NBC’s “Rock Center”—I will never forget a sullen Bob Costas speaking of “rhythmic slap, slap, slapping sounds”—the news story was unlike anything I’d ever come across before. The lurid accusations, the high-profile figures, the institutional failure—it all seemed so surreal.
I’ve alluded to it in this column before, but in considering its timeliness at the moment, I wanted to say it again: I love Bruce Springsteen.
There’s a lot to dislike about election season. Campaign volunteers inundating your home with phone calls and solicitations imploring you to vote for their candidate. People starting flame wars regarding who “won” the debate, if that’s even possible to discern. The mouthbreathers who say “I’m moving to Canada if Candidate X is elected president.” (Quite frankly, those people should move to Canada, because they’re insufferable.)
I probably won’t vote in the upcoming presidential election (that’s a story for another week), but if I did, I’d definitely write in comedian Louis C.K, star of the FX series “Louie.”
Back in high school, when I was still had not decided which college I wanted to attend, I enjoyed perusing thick college guidebooks to help me in my decision. Those books included nearly every college under the sun, offering ratings of both academic and social life, campus hot spots and perspectives from students who attended the colleges.
Among my group of close friends, over the years I’ve been consistently regarded as the “old man” of the crew.
At various points in my college career, I’ve seen Facebook posts, newspaper columns and other forms of media celebrating the idea of “what it means to be a Badger.” And I have to say, as I enter my senior year, I still don’t get it.
The first full week of classes is just about in the books, and so is the sense of wonderment that comes with it.