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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Ranking the Sweet 16

I'm taking a break from movies to rank you the 16 remaining teams in the tournament. The rankings are what teams I think have the best shot to win it all, not win their next game or make it to the Final Four. That is why two of the top four teams are from the same region.

Oh, and speaking of sports don't worry. I'll be taking a look at the season in the coming days.

16. Washington State
Is WSU the worst team left in the tournament? No. The problem is they have the toughest road to win it all. The East region is loaded with this year. There's Tennessee, Louisville, and WSU's next opponent, North Carolina. WSU needs an exceptional game to beat the Heels. And even if they do, they have to play either Tennessee or Louisville in the regional final. That's a lot to ask for any team.

15. Villanova
Nova has been a great story this year, but they got to play Kansas. Considering they are a 12 seed, they should be happy they got this far and enjoy it. They won't be able to keep the run alive.

14. Western Kentucky
I'm still mad Western Kentucky beat Drake, but that's life. Now, they have to play UCLA next. I feel like UCLA is beatable, but is Western Kentucky good enough to stay with them? Like Villanova, they should be happy they got this far. They need a great game to pull it off.

13. Michigan State
The Spartans can't be complaining too much. They saw Miss State almost beat Memphis and that should give them confidence. I won't be surprised at all if they win. Still, this team is not a national title contender. The regional final against either Texas or Stanford should be the end of the line if they survive against Memphis.

12. Davidson
I had Davidson going to the Sweet 16 and have them losing to Wisconsin. Still, I could see them pulling it off. Curry is a great player to watch and Wisconsin doesn't score a lot. The problem is that Wisconsin is a great defensive team, so Davidson will need to keep turnovers low and shoot well. If they can pull off the upset, who knows how far they can go? San Antonio is possible, but win it all might be a stretch.

11. West Virginia
I like this team because it's being led by Bob Huggins. This team exceeded expectations this year and now they are in the Sweet 16. Plus, they get bonus points for knocking out Duke. They have a couple serious weapons led by Joe Alexander and this team could be dangerous. A trip to the regional final wouldn't be shocking and the way they are playing maybe even San Antonio.

10. Xavier
The game against West Virginia should be a good one. I personally like them to win and face possibly UCLA. Unfortunately, that will be the end of the road. Here's one thing the Musketeers have going for them. They have five guys who are averaging double figures. So, who do you defend? That presents problems for defenses and could carry them to San Antonio.

9. Tennessee
I like this team, but I don't like this team. I'm also worried about Chris Lofton's injury. The Vols could have been a number one seed, but instead got stuck in the same bracket as Louisville and UNC. That makes the possibility of surviving and going to San Antonio extremely difficult. And for that reason, that's why they are the so low on this list. I don't see them surviving.

8. Stanford
Stanford goes as far as the Lopez twins will let them. Brook and Robin are ridiculous. That play to beat Marquette was one of the best shots of the tournament. The game against Texas should be exciting and this team could be a sleeper to make it to San Antonio. They can beat anyone in their region, it's just a question if can play their game and dominate the paint. After that it could be tough since they are 0-2 against UCLA this year (possible Final Four opponent).

7. Memphis
I just really don't like this team. Are they good? Yes. Are they a legit contender? No. Their record is inflated after capitalizing on conference play in Conference USA. They also have horrible free throw shooting, which also cost them the game against Mississippi State. They do have two solid scorers in Douglas-Roberts and Rose, but is that enough? Here's the thing about Memphis, they do have a lot to prove since this team has failed to make the Final Four the last two years (Elite 8 each time). If that serves as motivation, then they could make it to at least San Antonio. They have to play a Michigan State team next, which is very beatable. Then, they have to deal with either Texas or Stanford, which should be a great game. Regardless, this team is the most likely number one seed to fail to reach the Final Four.

6. Texas
Kevin Durant may be long gone, but this team has gone further without the '07 POY. Part of that reason is the emergence of D.J. Augustin. Plus, they also have great shooting from A.J. Abrams. And, let's not forget about the double double average of Damion James. Their only issue to go the distance is if Augustin can carry them that far. They may rely on him too much and that could be a recipe for disaster. Still, I like them to go to San Antonio.

5. Louisville
Good ole Rick Pitino has himself a team that is really good. Question is whether they can survive the possibility of playing not only Tennessee, but North Carolina before making it to the Final Four. They do have four guys who are averaging double figures led by David Padgett. That gives them options. They also have yet to be really tested so far in the tournament and I really think a team like this needed a close game to prepare for this upcoming weekend.

4. Wisconsin
I like this team because they play defense and they play it very well. Ask Michael Beasley and Kansas State. They shot 39.6% from the field for 55 points. Hell, Fullerton shot 36.2% from the field for 56. Their next opponent is Davidson, which could be an interesting game considering how well Curry has played. I just really believe defense wins championships and that's why this team is dangerous.

3. Kansas
It's hard not to like Kansas. This team is just really deep and well rounded. They can do a little bit of everything and that makes them dangerous. They have great guard play from Chalmers and Rush. Then, they can work you inside with Arthur and Jackson. They got a tough task of possibly playing Wisconsin in the regional final, but they should make it to San Antonio. Although, anything less than a championship will probably be disappointing.

The Bruins had a little scare against Texas A&M, but sometimes that is a good thing. This team is still very good and has arguably the easiest trip to the Final Four out of all the one seeds. Plus, they get to avoid playing either UNC or Kansas until at least the title game. The Bruins are also very balanced with Kevin Love and Darren Collison. That should be enough to get them to San Antonio and maybe win another national championship.

1. North Carolina
Yeah, I'm a Tar Heel fan (since '98), but they look great this tournament. Arkansas isn't a horrible team and the Heels blew them out of the water. They should handle WSU and prepare for an exciting regional final. Louisville scares me more than Tennessee, but both teams will be a challenge. The key to North Carolina is they have a lot of weapons starting with national player of the year, Tyler Hansbrough. Plus, they have the likes of Ty Lawson and Wayne Ellington. They are the number one overall seed and I still think they are the team to beat in the tournament.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

R.I.P. Neil Aspinall 1941-2008

I know he died a couple days ago, but I still feel like I need to say how shocked I was to hear of Neil Aspinall's death. A lot of people have claims to be the coveted Fifth Beatle, but Aspinall might have had the best argument. Along with Mal Evans, he served as one of the Beatles most trusted friends and assistants. Then, after the break-up of the band in 1970, he ran Apple Corps. until April 10, 2007 (37 years to the day after The Beatles publicly disbanded).

Mostly only Beatle fanatics understand his importance, but it's unbelievable when you really think about it. He kept integrity to
The Beatle name and never tarnished their legacy. He held out the release of Beatle CDs until after most bands already were on the format. When the CDs were finally released in the late 80s, it generated an incredible amount of sales. He also refused to let the Beatles songs ever be included on compilation CDs. Aspinall also was executive producer how on the critically acclaimed Beatles Anthology.

I always found it funny that Aspinall and Peter Brown (Brian Epstein's assistant and later a member of the Apple staff) averaged a liquor bill of about 600 pounds a week back in the late 60s and they ate four course lunches. No wonder The Beatles Apple Corps. lost a ton of money and was a financial disaster.

Neil Aspinall was 66.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Sirens of the LAMBs

As I reported last week, I'm participating in an event over at LAMB where 16 female characters battle it out to see which one is the baddest. My character Bonnie Parker from Bonnie and Clyde is going against Sil from Species. Click HERE to view the battle.

Honestly, could care either way if I win or lose. I'm sure my opponent agrees with me that it's an odd match since both female characters are very different in a lot of ways. I think they are both bad ass in different respects and both movies are very different. I never saw Species before this tournament, but it was on AMC last week and I gave it a viewing.

Of course, if you've seen the movie, it's hard to imagine a bank robber from the 30s fighting an alien from the 90s that grows and heals extremely fast. It's not a big deal, but the event should have only allowed human characters in the tournament to make it more realistic. Is Bonnie and Sil really going to have a catfight? Give me a break.

So basically, I just said the hell with the fight and decided to have a little fun. I provided a bunch of inside references to the film in the article that most people probably will never get. In case you didn't know, Bonnie and Clyde is my second favorite movie of all time (trailing only Boogie Nights). After I finished my entry, I realized how ridiculous it was. I was forced to burn Sil alive since I didn't know any other way to kill the bitch.

Also add on top off everything that I'm battling the guy who started LAMB, and I know I'm screwed from the start. Then again, I don't have to write another article, so maybe that's a good thing. Well, I'll find out soon enough. I will let you know the result of the match.

The Madness Has Begun!

Today starts what some people call the most exciting four days in sports. It's March Madness and the first two rounds of the tournament take place today through Sunday. In the college sports world, I don't think it gets much better. There are always a couple upsets and close games. It also makes you fall in love with an underdog or two. The tournament is a brilliant idea and fun time to watch basketball.

Now, I'm not going to analyze the tournament. I'll leave that task to Dick Vitale and company. I will let you know my Final Four picks. Here it goes.

North Carolina (National Champion)
UCLA (National Runner-Up)

Will that Final Four happen? Probably not, which is why I waited for the tournament to start, so no one would take my picks seriously. I will say that I've been a North Carolina fan since 1998 (when I started watching college basketball closely), so above all else, that's who I will be rooting for. Go Heels!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

R.I.P. Anthony Minghella 1954-2008

Anthony Minghella has died today at the age of 54. Most people probably remember him for The English Patient, which was the Best Picture of 1996. Minghella also won Best Director for that film. Some of his other work includes The Talented Mr. Ripley and Cold Mountain. According to imdb, he has a couple movies coming up, but what the status of those projects is anyone's guess.

According to what I read he died from complications after surgery. It's somewhat shocking to hear the news. I like to think that 54 is a young age to die in this day and age. Honestly, never been a big fan of his, but I respect what he has done through the years. He will be missed.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Movie Collection Series: St. Patrick's Day

The Movie Collection Series is back. And it has returned for one of the best holidays in the year, St. Patrick's Day. I decided I could take this list in a couple different directions, but settled for movies that contain alcohol rather than movies that contain Irishmen or something like that.

Rather than do a top ten for this holiday, I'm doing a top five. This allows me to come back and do a new list next year if I desire to do so since there were a couple films that were left off.

Anyway, here we go again...

5. Tommy (1975)
Alcohol Featured: Champagne
There's nothing better than champagne and beans. Yes, it's the classic combination in this famous rock opera. Champagne is shooting out everywhere in the white room. Then, beans follow to make it a ridiculous and gross scene. Then again, what do you expect from this movie? It makes no sense, but it also works quite well. The movie is well established by then, so there's no need to question it.

4. Y Tu Mama Tambien (2001)
Alcohol Featured: Hard Liquor, Beer
I really just wanted an excuse to suggest this movie. It's filled with sex and part of that can attributed to drinking to the spanking the monkey, the clitoris, and blowjobs. It also leads to both lead characters getting drunk, having a threesome with Luisa, and making out with each other. Now, that wouldn't be horrible, but there are both guys. That's just not my thing. Mamacita!

3. Sideways (2004)
Alcohol Featured: Wine
This movie is all about wine. It makes you want to drink wine. It made wine cool. Most of the movie showcases red wines (especially Pinot Noir, which is also my personal favorite). It also makes you not want to ever drink fucking Merlot. It's hard to pick one scene since wine is featured so much. Though, the best scene in the film is probably between Miles and Maya discussing how special Pinot Noir is. That's a great speech to a great movie.

2. The Merchant of Four Seasons (1972)
Alcohol Featured: Hard Liquor
I had to put this film in for the simple reason that I love the drinking scene that takes place. This is one of Rainer Werner Fassbinder's best films. Hans has been told that if he drinks anymore that he will die. While sitting at the dinner table with his family he proceeds to drink roughly ten shots. He dedicates some of them to people and places. Before you know it has has drank so much, he passes out on the table and dies. This film is dark and depressing, but is a great and realistic character study.

1. Wild Things (1998)
Alcohol Featured: Champagne
Wild Things as a whole is an average film with some hot scenes. And, there is not hotter scene in this film than the threesome in the hotel with Sam, Kelly, and Suzie (Matt Dillon, Denise Richards, and Neve Campbell). Add unto on the hotness the fact that there is champagne involved and the rest is history. The scene is relatively short, but it does the trick with Sam playing around with both girls. Kelly and Suzie are making out. Then, Suzie pours some champagne all over Kelly and it starts to feel like a cheap porno flick. Seriously, do you really think that in a porno there has never been the lines like, "Guidance counselors get to find out all sorts of interesting things." or "Now, I want you two to kiss." I would be shocked, but who cares?

Friday, March 14, 2008

Weekend Thoughts of an Italian Florist: Vol. 1, Issue 2

Okay, so I missed the last couple weeks. Some things with greater importance came up. I hope you can forgive me.

Thought #1: May have another big agency interview next week. Should be interesting. Honestly, just wish that company (name deleted for privacy) would call me back and set something up.
Thought #2: As the season nears the end, the Celtics may actually win #17 this year. The West doesn't scare me that much and this team is just built to win.
Thought #3: The Bruins are as usual tanking as the playoffs approach. This team looked like at least playoff bound, but they are playing like a bunch of bums.
Thought #4: Not really worried about the Sox, yet. The season hasn't even started and people are pushing the panic button. Why?
Thought #5: Can Bonnie Parker really kill Sil in a battle?

Can Bonnie Parker Kill Sil?

That's the question of the week, friends. I was a little worried at first, but I luckily got an opportunity to watch Species today. It was on AMC and I was not impressed. Could Sil kill Bonnie? Maybe, but I think Bonnie is a little smarter than her. And smarts go a long way in cat fights.

Sil is one of those characters that looks big and bad by description, but the filmmakers dropped the ball. She is boring and spends her time trying to find a man to impregnate her. I was hoping she was going to be this lunatic alien, but that is not the case. It was very disappointing. Granted she is hot, but so is Bonnie Parker.

Only time will tell who wins this battle. I'll let you know if I make it to the "Elite 8".

Kentucky Fried Movie (1977)

The other night I watched Kentucky Fried Movie. I've heard a lot things about it, but finally made room in my schedule to view it. Not going to lie, it was really worth it. Granted the film came out thirty years ago and was made on a shoe string budget, but it was funny.

Basically, the film is a series of skits that are edited together to make a movie. Now, you might think that it doesn't work, but these skits are ridiculous. They're over the top and extremely well executed. The film was written by the Zucker brothers and directed by John Landis. Hell, it even stars a bunch of unknowns, but it works brilliantly.

I don't really want to get into the actual skits because I think it's much funnier when you don't know what's going to happen. It isn't really suspense, but you just watch the skits and ask yourself whether the most ridiculous over the top ending will happen, then it does. Although, you don't care because it's so funny and fits in with the whole film.

Some of the skits that were my personal favorites include "Catholic High School Girls in Trouble", "Feel-A-Round", The Wonderful World of Sex", "Unied Appeal For the Dead", and "Danger Seekers". Then, there is the legendary "A Fistful of Yen", which is the longest skit of the film at near 30 minutes. That is worth viewing the film alone.

"Send him to Detroit."
"No! Not Detroit!"

Every Man's Fantasy

Well, my week has been made. What about you?

It's true. There are lesbians in Hollywood.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Are You a Terrorist?

This has nothing to do with movies or Boston sports, but I thought it was very interesting. I was reading this article online about there being over 900,000 names on the U.S. government terrorist watch list. There should be over one million by July 2008.

I don't know what to make of this list. I like to consider myself very liberal, so considering that roughly 1 in 300 Americans are terrorists, I'm probably on the list. I probably know about 299 other people that are more patriotic than me. The government probably classifies anyone who is a Democrat as a terrorist.

I guess what I did learn was always watch your back. A terrorist could be anywhere. Look at my current situation. I live with a black man and a white man who can't grow a beard. Fuck, I'm screwed.

Click HERE to read the article.

Was It Worth It?

I just saw some pictures of the prostitute that Eliot Spitzer got it on with. Granted the guy just resigned as Governor, but who really wants to be Governor of New York anyway? I don't. Governor of Massachusetts? Maybe.

So, the question is whether it was really worth it?

Of course, Spitzer will say it wasn't, but you have to wonder. Not going to lie, the girl is not ugly.

Why is it every time I get a prostitute, she is always ugly. Yet, the Spitzer gets a fox? Am I doing something wrong?!

Random Picture Series: Part I

Am I the only person who spends some of their free time surfing the web for ridiculous pictures? Well here is another series I'm going to do just for fun. Every so often I'll just post some random pictures I found online. It's a real simple concept that I like to call the Random Picture Series.

I credit to finding most of these pictures from the site Reddit.

The Beatles on American Idol

I've never been a big fan of American Idol, but what's the deal with them always honoring The Beatles? Last year they did a Sgt. Pepper tribute on the finale. This year they are doing not one, but two weeks of songs from the Lennon/McCartney songbook. Now, I don't have anything against it, but I'm just curious.

I watched some of the performances on last night and they were average. I thought some were better than others. Part of the problem is that people try to do too much with Beatles' songs. They try to put their own spin on them and it just doesn't work.

Look at David Archuleta last night. He bombed during his performance since he put this Stevie Wonder twist on "We Can Work It Out". Compare that to say Brooke White's "Let It Be" and my point is proven. She took "Let It Be" and just did the song with a lot of heart.

I'm not saying you have to sing them verbetum, but keep it simple. Or KISS (keep it simple stupid) as my old high school teacher used to say. The Beatles are the greatest band ever for a reason.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Two Days at the Whittier Film Festival

As I stated yesterday, I did want to write a review on the Whittier Film Festival. A film I produced, I Saved the World from Global Warming, screened at the first annual fest. Let me just say that I gave a hard review on the Boston Film Festival and I'm going to give this festival the same treatment.

The festival was two days long and I thought the length was perfect. I don't know how many submissions they got, but it felt like they were desperate for submissions. I wasn't very impressed with the selection of films. I found most of them to be mediocre. They did have some quality ones in there, but it was a very top heavy festival.

We saw a film on Friday night called Journey to India. What a piece of shit! It was like watching a home video for a little over an hour. It was an amateur film shot on mini dv and edited on iMovie. They used copyrighted music that they didn't have clearance for. The audio levels were horrible. Most of all, it was not interesting at all. It had no structure or point. It was torture to the extreme. I hate to sound like an ass, but if you're going to show something in public be prepared for a review. And my review is real simple. Never, and I mean never, watch it.

A couple of the short films there were good. Although, most were average. Nothing special to brag about and nothing that caught my attention. I liked an animation short called Gecko and another Chapman short called Negoitations. That's all I'll publicly admit to liking.

I also found some of the volunteer staff to be somewhat rude. I went with one of the co-directors of the film and the volunteers were giving us a hard time. The festival refused to give out passes, so we had to keep persuading people to give us tickets to watch the films. I found this very unaccommodating. The guy who ran the festival was nice and that's the most important thing. Volunteers come and go, but the organizers are the ones that are in it for the long run (I hope).

Here's the thing that Whittier has to remember. We're the filmmakers and we're attending the festival. It would be nice to get some special treatment. Filmmakers make film festivals succeed and without them, then it is just like going to the movie theatre on any given day. As a filmmaker, I shouldn't have to pay money to attend a party when my film is in competition.

Whittier reminded me of Boston in a lot of ways and it's funny. It made me realize that Boston was run like a first year festival. Sadly, Boston just had its 23rd festival. Thinking about it in that perspective makes Whittier look promising and I look forward to what the festival does in the future. It can only improve.

Oh, and the film I produced won Best Short at the fest. Does that make me an award winning filmmaker?

A Look at Greatness

I was all set to post this today and I got beat by Jeff Wells, but I'm going to post it anyway. I originally saw this on Cigarettes and Red Vines.

Basically, it's a look at all five of Paul Thomas Anderson's films. It actually surprised me how good it was made. It kind of got me all tingly inside and now I have the urge to watch all five films in a marathon as soon as Blood is released on DVD. Anyone live in LA and want to join me? We'll go in chronological order. Probably take over 12 hours to do, but it would be legendary.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Trying to Write

Just realized I haven't posted in a couple days. I've been a little busy the last couple of days, so I have a legit reason. I was at the Whittier Film Festival over the weekend. Plus, I got to write this argument for an event I'm doing with LAMB.

My plan is to post a review on the film festival tomorrow. Maybe try to write some other exciting things. Trying to find material after Oscar season is beginning to be more difficult than I originally thought.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Mustache Postponement

As I reported on this site last month, I was planning on doing a feature for the month of March called 31 Days of Mustache. Obviously, it being March 6th, that is not going to happen. I'm going to postponement it a year, but considering how fast time flies, it will seem like nothing. I may still do a top ten list or something at the very end of the month. We'll see how I feel.

The feature was delayed due to the death of my Aunt and other personal matters. Not making excuses, but I hope you understand. I want to do it right since I don't like doing half ass blogging.

I also decided not to participate in Mustache March this year due to my current situation. I'm in the middle of interviewing at a couple places and I can't be going into the interview with a mustache that either resembles a porn star or pedophile. It just doesn't look good and I probably won't get hired.

It's kind of sad, though, because I really like Mustache March. I think I did it like the last two or three years. I looked forward to it. Growing a mustache is fun and it's actually a good conversation starter. Granted it doesn't work at getting girls, but you got to stay positive.

As I've learned in my young life, not every man can grow a mustache (including a couple of my friends). And sadly, some women can grow a mustache (Ladies, waxing was started for a reason). It's funny how that works.

What's Going on Patrick?

Am I the only person really confused about Patrick Swayze? Yes, I know he has cancer, but how serious is it? Does the guy have only five weeks left like it has been reported? Or does the guy have cancer, but it's still a fight he can win?

Honestly, not a huge fan of his, but I hope he can fight the cancer and win. I've seen Dirty Dancing before (Yes, I'll admit it). Hell, I've even seen Ghost. That scene with Demi Moore is steamy.

Anyway, that is one story that has caught my eye in my absence and I just had to write something about it.

Good luck, Patrick. From your friends at Spaghetti Sauce and Sweet Peas.

Catching Up on Sports, Bostonian Style

What a busy week in Boston sports. It's only fitting to take a look at what the hell is going on.

They were riding a six game winning streak before getting blown out 10-2 by the Capitals. Still can't figure this team out. I just feel like they are missing a key piece to the puzzle of a world championship. Will they make the playoffs? Probably (sixth seed right now). Honestly, if they are smart, stay in the sixth seed because they draw the Carolina Hurricanes. They should be able to take out the Canes. After that, who knows?

Believe it or not, they clinched a playoff spot last night. They signed a couple veterans (Cassell and Brown). They have stayed relatively healthy. I had my doubts early on, but this team could win it all. Even look at their matchup with the Pistons. They should really be 3-0 against them. They lost the first game because of a foolish foul with a second to go. They are even playing against the West really well. Expectations will certainly be high and they really can't afford to blow it especially after the Patriots' collapse.

Yes, they lost Samuel, Gay, and Stallworth, but they are not in horrible shape as some people would make you think. They resigned Bruschi, Gaffney, and Moss. They have signed a couple role players. Plus, they still have the draft and free agency isn't over yet. Their big issue is whether they can find a couple diamonds in the rough whether it be free agency or the draft. I do trust Belichick and Pioli. Any Patriot fan really should. Just don't expect them to go undefeated again.

Red Sox
A ton of pressure is on the Red Sox this year. Besides being defending champs, they need to make people in Boston forget about the Patriots. As soon as the Super Bowl ended, everyone in Boston wanted to know when spring training starts. Well, it's in full swing. Papelbon just got his new contract today. Schilling is possibly gone for the season, but this team is still built solid. I believe they have 23/25 guys from last year still on the team. That's unbelievable. Yeah the Tigers and Yanks will be scary, but the Sox are still the team to beat. As with Belichick and Pioli, trust Theo because he knows what he is doing.

I'm Back

Well, it's official I'm returning to the blogging world as of today. Yes, I know it's the biggest announcement this week. Sorry, Brett. After spending the last week or so reflecting and whatnot, I feel it's time to get back into the game.

First off, thanks to all those who sent their thoughts as I really did appreciate it. I don't think you ever get over the fact that someone has died. You just learn to adjust and make sure it doesn't dictate your life. As I approach a little over a week since the death of Auntie Tina, that's how I feel right now.

I also want to make an announcement that I've had a mysterious illness the last week. I was talking to my Mom the other day and I think I caught something she had. I lost my appetite and my stomach has been upset. Not that you want to know all of that, but I just wanted to sound like Nikki Finke for a paragraph. Although, if any of my roommates get sick, don't blame me.

A lot of exciting stuff has happened in the Boston sports world during the last week. I'll post more on that in the near future. Even though I'm still bitter over the Pats' Super Bowl loss, it's a good time to be a Boston sports fan.

Don't worry, I don't plan to do that much posting for the 2008 Oscars, but I've got some exciting entertainment news to discuss (at least according to me).

Oh, and I know that the blog's banner is too big. I got to fix that. I'll be playing around with some stuff over the next few months. Trying to make this blog look cooler and more professional. Just in case anyone really cares.

And finally, I appreciate the support. My readership has greatly expanded since the start of 2008. I credit that to my fellow bloggers, LAMB, other networking sites, and myself (What? It's true.). I hope you come back to reading this blog because I'm going to start posting again, and I don't feel like talking to myself.

"Don't Ever Stop Coming"
AT 2/26/08

Monday, March 3, 2008

Getting Better

It's been five days since my last post. I think that's a record for this blog. Not going to lie, don't really care. I'm actually writing this to let everyone know that I'm still on "vacation". Don't expect to be blogging again until later in the week. The past week has been extremely difficult for me and I still feel like a piece of shit. Can barely sleep or eat. I just need time to not think about anything.

I was very close to my Auntie Tina. To the point that she was really like a grandmother to me. She watched my sister and I a lot when we were growing up. And, it was tough to say goodbye. I delivered the eulogy on Saturday and I was surprised at myself. Considering the circumstances, I didn't break down. Yes, I cried, but I was able to keep it together. Whether you believe it or not, I'm a great public speaker. It's easier for me to talk in front of 500 people than one person. I guess it's just my personality or something.

I will also say that giving out a eulogy is one of the best things you can ever do in your life. This was my second one. I gave out Nana's (paternal grandmother) back in 2002. It's the hardest and most rewarding experience in your life. It's bigger than making movies or writing in a blog. Why? Because you have the final word on someone's life. It's the time to remember that person for who they were not just to you, but to everyone else at the funeral. Granted it's impossible to sum up a life in a speech, but it's your responsibility to do it to the best of your ability.

I truly believe I observe life very well and I plan to volunteer to give out eulogies throughout my life. I don't like doing it, but I feel like it's a duty. It's the last thing I can do for some people that touched my life.

I also did some things this weekend that I never did before. Things I won't ever forget. Things I will only share with those very close to me.

It's also amazing how at a funeral (or wedding), it's one of the few times you see all your aunts, uncles, and cousins in the same room. I saw people I either never met before or I'd seen only a handful of times in my life. It makes you realize that you have a huge family really. It also made me realize that I have some really crazy full blooded Italians in my family with names like Dellorfano, Garofano, and Devito.

I don't consider myself an extremely religious person, but three odd things have happened to me since Auntie Tina's funeral on Saturday.

1. I open up the local newspaper on Saturday and see an article about a man entertaining the residents of the nursing home Auntie Tina was staying at. This is how the article ends.
One resident, a woman named Christine, reaches for his hand.

"Don't ever stop coming," she says.
The article was reported on Tuesday, the next day she died. Of course, I'm not 100% that it's her, but I really think it is. I can picture her doing that. The quote itself can be taken multiple different ways, but I know what it means to me and that's all that matters.

2. I'm washing my hands in Logan airport at the bathroom on Sunday. And a song comes on the radio. Here are the lyrics:
Thanks for the times that you've given me,
The memories are all in my mind.
And now that we've come to the end of our rainbow
There's something I must say out loud.
That's the lyrics to The Commodores' song, "Three Times a Lady". It sent a shiver down my spine that resulted in me breaking down in the bathroom.

3. I'm riding home from the airport on Sunday with one other woman. Guess what she was doing? Attending a funeral. She spends the majority of the ride talking on the phone about death and how to accept it.

Maybe it's all coincidence. Maybe it isn't, but that's crazy how some stuff works out. At least I think so and it really makes you wonder. Are the deceased really watching over the living? I don't have the answer, but I'd like to think so.

I'll be back in a couple of days...