"Donnie Nelson said, 'We selected you with the 61st pick.' He said they're looking forward to having me join them and he likes the kind of player I am."
- Former Wazzu men's hoop player Derrick Low, who was selected by the NBA's Dallas Mavericks to play on their summer league team.
"It's the wild, wild West. The internet has changed recruiting completely."
- California high school football coach Troy Starr, speaking about Oregon's scholarship withdrawal to defensive back Xavier Ramos getting plenty of play on that darn internet. Before that darn internet came along, schools used to get away with seamy underbelly moves without immediate reactions or consequences – we presume this is surely how Starr meant it has changed recruiting completely.
"The Americans are a bit older. They play with a lot of enthusiasm – but they don't control the ball very well."
- Iraqi goal-scoring leader Sufian Ali, after a group of Iraqi ex-militiamen defeated a team of Americans comprised of U.S. Army soldiers in a soccer friendly by a score of 9-0.
"Those who dance are considered insane by those who can't hear the music."
- Comedian George Carlin, who passed away last week.
The Lounge has been in mourning all week upon learning of the death of George Carlin. Carlin was the author of a lifelong unholy treatise on, well, life. It is difficult to fathom where much of the Lounge's brain [along with other, assorted internal organs] would have been located today if they were not under the heavy influence of the utterings of Carlin over the years. For instance, how would we know the differences between baseball and football ["In baseball, you go hooome…la de da, we're going hooome!"] or how would we know about impatient people who say they "haven't got all day" ["I always wonder, how can that be? How can you not have all day?"] or what "pre-boarding" means ["Do you get on before you get on?"] or how flamethrowers came to be ["The very existence of flamethrowers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves - "you know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done."] or the distribution of mental pennies ["If someone asks you for a penny for your thoughts and you put your two cents in, what happens to the other penny?"]. We are sure that Carlin would be pleased to know that, by the time of his death, four of the seven dirty words you could never say on television [the title of his famous skit that got him arrested in Milwaukee in 1972] are now routinely commonplace in television shows, at least cable television. The other three though – still mostly off-limits. Which means, of course, it's time for the free Carlin weather forecast for tonight: dark, with continued dark overnight and widely scattered light by the morning – unless you live at the airport, but who lives at the airport?
Sometimes the summer sporting scene is interesting and sometimes it is boring – this year is an interesting year – mostly because of Fresno State and Turkey, both plucky little underdogs that tossed many of the bigwigs on their ears. Fresno State did this in the NCAA baseball world while Turkey did this in the international soccer world. Fresno State went all the way and took the NCAA title – making the ultimate statement for the little guys while Turkey made a brave foray before their train got derailed in the Euro 2008 semifinals by that big brute, Germany. That is all well and good, but now they have stopped playing and we are left with a Wimbledon with no American men and questionable women – unless they allow circus midgets to begin their own tournaments, and the Lounge doesn't see that happening any time soon. Since many in the Lounge clientele would like to see those plucky teams keep playing and because the world's sporting thirst requires nothing less than a complete winner, obviously the thing to do here would be to have a Fresno State-Turkey match in baseball-soccer – a new game which would combine some of the most intriguing elements of baseball [chewing, spitting, scratching, charging the mound] with those of soccer [kicking, pulling jerseys, faking injuries] – in a winner-take-all game unless the BCS Taliban was in charge and both would be shuttled off to the Cotton Bowl and surefire obscurity.
Of course, there is always the Tour de France. But now that they are focusing on having clean cyclists in the race, only the Amish team has a chance. Still, the race is always fun if not to listen to the interesting banter of Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen and some tidbits from Bob Roll. Anybody holding an MBE [Most Excellent Order of the British Empire] must have interesting things to say – and Liggett always does.
Some of them are even socially conscious thoughts and that means they might even get aired on The University Network later this summer. The network, which has the Pac-10 schools as members, will begin "socially-conscious" programming later this summer, to coincide with the return of students to school in the fall.
At midnight on Monday – well, maybe it is not midnight, but it sounds nice and dramatic – the 2007-08 school year officially comes to a close. The athletic year officially came to a close last week and with it came the final Director's Cup standings. Stanford – yawn – won again [for the 14th time] as the Pac-10 was dominant with eight schools finishing in the Top 30 and all finishing within the Top 90 – including Wazzu, which gathered 278.5 points for 73rd place. For WSU, it was their fifth-best placement in the 15-year history of the competition in a year that saw the Cougars get post-season appearances from both indoor and outdoor women's track and field, men's outdoor track and field, men's basketball, rowing and tennis.
"Woo-hoo! We have somebody to root for at the Olympics!" exclaims Lounge newcomer The ArchDuke of Guacamole, who is referring to former Wazzu heptathlete Diana Pickler making the USA Olympic team in the heptathlon.
Well, Your Supreme Avocadoness, it is okay to root for other Americans and – horror of horrors – even athletes from other countries at the Olympics. It is not like somebody is constantly telling you how to think and what you can or cannot say or do – after all, what do you think this is – China!? Wait a minute, let us rephrase that. What we mean is…oh never mind, Pickler is going to Beijing – by a slim 10 points – otherwise known in fancy track lingo as by the skin of her chinny-chin-chin. Pickler was the first Cougar athlete to secure her berth on the U.S.A. Olympic team. She made the team with a Hollywood-style performance in the 800 meters, finishing within two seconds of heptathlete competitor Virginia Johnson to lock down the third and final spot. Pickler will likely be joined by former Cougars Bernard Lagat [who, we hope, got his wallet back, good riddance to the cell phone] and Ian Waltz this week but she will not be joined by freshman hurdling sensation Jeshua Anderson, who was unable to get into the 400-meter hurdle finals after running a 48.92 in the semi-finals – good enough for ninth place with the top eight going to the finals. Anderson had a tough road to hoe since he has not yet run less than a 48.69 and virtually all the Olympic hopefuls have run faster than that time. Still, Anderson had a good year – gathering a Pac-10 championship in the 400-meter hurdles, an NCAA title and the USA Junior crown all in the last two months.
"I'm glad Kyle got drafted. I just wish Derrick had been too," says a somewhat glum Man From Next Tuesday, Uh, He Means Wednesday about former Cougar hoopsters Kyle Weaver and Derrick Low.
Weaver was drafted by Charlotte with the 38th pick in last week's NBA Draft and will get the extra benefit of going to the same city where his head coach Tony Bennett played his three years' worth of NBA ball. Low, meanwhile, was not drafted but wait a minute, maybe he was, Tuesday, uh, we mean, Wednesday – didn't you see? He was taken with the 61st pick! Low was asked by the Dallas Mavericks to play with their summer league team, where he will be evaluated further and have a chance to make the Mavericks' roster later in the year and that at least keeps him in the NBA range.
The Lounge is not completely down with social media – seems like a lot of unnecessary drama that some people think you need to have 24/7, and really, who, besides short-attention spanned adults and sub-adults, needs to know with national emergency-type spontaneity if Jenny's new boyfriend is cute or Johnny's boss is a stuck-up, overactive libido drone? Couldn't that kind of important stuff wait until cocktail hour when it can be better enjoyed anyway? So the whole Facebook/Myspace thing is like so "whatever" to the Lounge clientele, but if you got a good name, you got a good name and Plurk has got themselves a good name. Plurk has a few bells and whistles that differentiate them from the others, but the core theme is the same and, in that regard, they are not really any different than the rest. Except that they have that name. Plurk!
Something else that has a good name is chocolate. Chocolate has had its good name for quite some time now. Just ask almost anybody and they will have good things to say about chocolate. The Lounge Scientists have some good things to say about chocolate. Big candy company Mars and big technology company IBM along with big government agency, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, all put aside their fancy staplers for a minute so they could all devote time together toward sequencing the entire genome of cocoa – the main ingredient in chocolate. The plan is to sequence the genome and then find ways to make healthier, stronger, more productive cocoa trees and, hence, more and better chocolate [also, as Whiz and Ice might say on the Homeboy Shopping Network – "Mo Money, mo money, mo money!"].
"A lot of people make a living from cocoa," says Lounge Scientist #10, Isidore Rigoutsos, a researcher at IBM, who reputedly can grow chocolate candy bars on trees in his backyard.
What comes next? Why, a chocolate Plurk, of course.
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Attention COUGAR fans and well-wishers! Summer is here and you have the hunger. How can you afford to go one day further without some tasty morsels from Clark's Restaurant in Grays Harbor – home of the Best Hamburger in Twin Harbors for nine consecutive years? Come in for the burger, fresh homemade fries and milkshakes concocted from homemade ice cream. Go ahead, we dare you to try and pass up more than 12 varieties of hamburgers to choose from, full dinners, lunch and full breakfast served daily. Clark's Restaurant 360.538.1487. Seven miles south of Aberdeen, Washington on Highway 101. Proud supporter of CougZone. Mention this ad for a free small ice cream.