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The Steve WenPetren Project, Part 2

For those who missed it, check out Part 1 of my series on how to stop being a terrible golfer.

Last week, I showed tremendous consistency in not being able to hit a single ball far or straight, so the good news is, there’s no where else for me to go but up as I prepare for my second lesson with Steve. In between the first two lessons, I did play 18 holes of golf at Reston National, not well, but at least I showed up. More importantly, I spent the week trying to grasp my practice grip (now named “Black Magic”) to the point where it felt comfortable and natural. I’ve already told Steve he’s not getting “Black Magic” back for a while, as I plan on traveling with it and taking pictures with it as we’ve formed a special bond.

I was very eager for lesson #2, as not having ever taken lessons before I was curious to see how the transition would go from what was learned last week into this week. Steve told me to warm up and hit some balls, and then after me taking at least a full minute in between swings, Steve told me that it’s only an hour-long lesson and that I should just hit balls to get loosened up and not as if I was trying to win the Masters on every shot.

So I got loose by hitting everything to the left as usual, which segued nicely into this week’s lesson…

LESSON #2 – Release Some Tension

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Valentine’s Day Gift

This is worthy of its own post.  This afternoon, Maggie came back from the gym and said she wanted to go to Taco Bell to get a small bite to eat.  I went along with her, b/c not only had I been a little stir crazy being home and cleaning most of the day, but I can’t resist the 89-cent chicken burrito also.

We pulled into the drive-thru and after some misunderstanding with the person taking our order (why would I want extra lettuce with my iced tea?), we proceeded to the window where they handed me our food, and then the manager came to the window and handed me a big red and white gift bag and said that it was a Valentine’s Day present from them.

Ooooookay, that seems weird.  Instead of opening it right then and there, I thought I should drive away just in case it was something ridiculous.  Sadly, a severed head was the first thought that popped into my head.  I pulled us into a parking space and looked in the bag and found a brand new 64 GB Apple iPad!  After a split second of wondering why Taco Bell just gave me an iPad, Maggie’s lack of a poker face gave it all away as she orchestrated the whole thing.

I’m not one for receiving gifts, just never been my nature, but not only was the actual gift itself awesome (especially those who know about my recent frustrations of not winning an iPad), but the hilarious execution made it all the more amazing.  I think I was in too much shock to laugh hysterically, but this was a great prank/present.  And couple with the birthday surprise back in August of Blanche and how that was delivered to me (came home from work, Maggie told me shower was leaking, go upstairs and there’s Blanche in the shower), I may start expecting these great gifts more often.  (What can I expect for President’s Day next week?)

Thank you very much to my lovely and talented wife.  You are my blog muse and I’m very lucky to have you to love and to be loved by you this Valentine’s Day, even if you’re going to be in Vegas the next few days.  Try to win some money baby, so I can get all the fancy apps for this mega-phone, mini-laptop contraption that I’ll be obsessed with now.

NFL Overtime? More like Blow-vertime

How’s that for a classy title?

I was going to write a quick movie review tonight of True Grit until I was listening to sports talk radio on the way home and apparently I didn’t pay enough attention when the new overtime rule came out after last season.  I caught the gist of it though, in that both teams are guaranteed a possession in OT unless the first possession involves the wind chill dropping below 20 degrees and an ostrich laying an egg at midfield before the entire cast of The Facts of Life does a conga line during a touchdown celebration.  Something along those lines.

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I’m Baaaaack!!! Did I miss anything?

So apparently when I said I was going on vacation, I really meant, 8 1/2 month blog coma.  Hope I don’t find out in a few weeks that I’ve fathered some little blog children.  My sincerest apologies to all 7 of my loyal readers for abandoning you these past months, I feel like some terrible combination of Dylan McKay’s father and Natalee Holloway.  I’m not even really sure what that’s supposed to mean, I’m still a bit rusty after not having used half my brain since April.

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Vacation

Sorry for the absence of a Fischer Friday Five this past week.  The amount of hate mail that I got in response to it would make Erin Andrews’ lawyers jealous.  Unfortunately I have been absolutely swamped with a variety of mediocre excuses and like my olden days of being a waiter at Bennigan’s (RIP), I’m in the weeds now.  Literally, so many weeds to pull in the yard, and the harsh winter has taken a rough toll on our land, so we spent the entire weekend having to deal with that.

With the Madness coming to an end and coupled with me heading out of town the next two weekends, the blog is taking a virtual vacation for the next two weeks, but it promises to be back bigger and better than before.  Ok, maybe not bigger, and possibly not better, but it will be back.

In fact, here’s what you’ll have to look forward to…

– the usual suspects of Fischer Friday Five, SAS Movie Reviews and American Idol Blog (hopefully by then, Tim “keyboard smash” Urban will be gone).

– the Steve WenPetren Project (working title – real name TBA); I will be taking a weekly golf lesson from club pro Steve and will be chronicling my hopeful turn from awful golfer to semi-awful golfer.

– a new  Tournament Showdown featuring 64 of the best television shows of all-time.

– a recap of my guest starring role on Gossip Girl (ok, not really, but you never know what might happen in the next two weeks).

Thanks for everyone’s support these first two-plus months, already surpassed over 10,000 viewers in that time.  Looking forward to more participation from everyone too, as it makes it more fun for me to write.

Before I go, one quick thought on the HUGE football trade that just went down and then my 2010 MLB Predictions (for mocking purposes).

EAGLES TRADE MCNABB TO REDSKINS?!?
Redskins will boo Donovan McNabb by Week 6, Eagles win the Super Bowl this year (Patrick Ewing theory in full effect).

2010 MLB PREDICTIONS
AL East Winner: Boston Red Sox
AL Central Winner: Chicago White Sox
AL West Winner: Texas Rangers
AL Wild Card Winner: New York Yankees
AL Surprise: Baltimore Orioles – finish 3rd in the AL East and give Yankees a chase for the WC
AL Bust: Seattle Mariners – too much hype, not buying it.
AL MVP: Nelson Cruz, Rangers
AL ROY: Austin Jackson, Tigers
AL Cy Young: Jon Lester, Red Sox
Random AL Prediction: To go along with Seattle’s bust year, they give up and trade Ichiro to the Yankees who are 6 GB of the WC at the trade deadline.

NL East Winner: Philadelphia Phillies
NL Central Winner: Milwaukee Brewers
NL West Winner: Colorado Rockies
NL Wild Card Winner: St. Louis Cardinals
NL Surprise: Cincinnati Reds – give the Brewers and the Cards a run before running out of steam at the end
NL Bust: New York Mets – most think they’ll be bad, but I think they’ll finish last in the East, even behind the lowly Nats
NL MVP: Prince Fielder, Brewers
NL ROY: Jason Heyward, Braves
NL Cy Young: Roy Halladay, Phillies
Random NL Prediction: Lou Piniella (Cubs) is the first manager fired this season.

AL Playoffs: Red Sox over White Sox, Yankees over Rangers, Red Sox over Yankees
NL Playoffs: Phillies over Cardinals, Rockies over Brewers, Phillies over Rockies

World Series: Phillies over Red Sox

This…Is American Idol…Blog (Top 11 Perform)

Previously on Idol, we had to say goodbye to what’s her face…oh yeah, Lacey Brown. Good for her, back in 2009 she lost out to Megan Joy Corkrey for the final female spot in the Top 24, and this year, she finishes 12th and still doesn’t get to go on tour. More importantly, she gets to join the merry band of fellow 12th place finishers – Jasmine Murray, David Hernandez, Brandon Rogers, Melissa McGhee, Lindsay Cardinale, Vanessa Olivares and Leah LaBelle. Let us all collectively say, “who?”

So we’re left with 11 hopefuls (well, more like 6 hopefuls and 5 time fillers), but more importantly, tonight we get a true mentor to the Idols, someone with whatever the exact opposite of oodles of talent is but has somehow sold millions of albums…yes, it’s Miley Cyrus! Seriously?  What is she going to mentor these contestant about? How to talk while chewing your own face?

Tonight they tackle the theme of Billboard #1s, so that means songs like “La Bamba”, “Love Shack” and “Ice Ice Baby” could be sung! I’m not holding my breath or anything, but chances are slim we’ll hear any of those, but if it’s like every other Billboard night in the history of Idol, there will be a Phil Collins song without a doubt.

Here’s how I have the remaining 11 ranked thru last week

LAST WEEK’S POWER RANKINGS
1. Crystal Bowersox
2. Siobhan Magnus
3. Lee Dewyze
4. Michael Lynche
5. Katie Stevens
6. Didi Benami
7. Casey James
8. Andrew Garcia
9. Aaron Kelly
10. Paige Miles
12. Tim Urban

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Lazy Man’s Decathlon, Part 2

For a recap of the origin of this supreme event and the early results, click here

So now trailing 1-0 after bowling, it was off to play darts. One minor snag, we had no idea where to find a dartboard. We tried the local bar around the corner from my house, but it was closed. Apparently I underestimated the amount of local drunks in my area. Eventually I remember there was a billiards hall down the street as well. I had never been there before, but it was a surprisingly nice place that I wouldn’t mind hanging out and watching football in the fall.

EVENT #2 – Darts
Rules: Best out of nine. Alternate between three different games.  1) Cricket with points, 2) 301 and 3) Cricket no points

For those who aren’t familiar with the rules of cricket and 301, basically the rule is, well, it might take me a while to explain, so just go to Wikipedia, I’m sure that’s a lot better than me babbling on about it, plus you’ll get to learn the history of the game and how it originated during medieval times.

I got off to a great start in game #1 of cricket with points.  Not having thrown a dart in 3 years didn’t prevent me from hitting triple 20 twice while taking an early and insurmountable 120-0 lead.  Granted, it took me just about 60-70 throws to hit the final bulls-eye to clinch it while letting Steiny slowly creep back in it, but at least I got good practice.  Game #2 which was 301 wasn’t even close as Steiny hit the big numbers early and I kept finding the 1 and the 3 on the board.  However, I took the lead back in game #3 of cricket without points by rallying huge.  Steiny closed out 20, 17, 16, and 19 real quickly, so I decided to just aim for the bulls-eye and hopefully any misses would hit in the 15-20 range.  Strategy paid off as I closed out the bulls-eye before Steiny could and thus it was a 2-1 lead for me.

After a short intermission, game 4 went back to cricket with points, but it was dominated by Steiny from the start, for a 2-2 tie.  But game #5 which was 301, was pure dominance on my part winning in just under 7 turns for the 3-2 lead.  Steiny turned the tables again, by winning games 6 and 7 (cricket no points, cricket with points) for a 4-3 lead and all he needed was to win one of the final two events to claim the event.  However, it wasn’t meant to be, as I won 301 in relatively easy fashion and in the last match of cricket no points, I rallied from a big early deficit to hit the final bulls-eye with Steiny having three throws left to match.  And just like Scott Norwood in the Super Bowl, Steiny was wide right.
RESULT: Jarrett wins Darts 5-4 and the Decathlon is tied 1-1 overall

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