APPETITE FOR DISCUSSION
Welcome to Appetite for Discussion -- a Guns N' Roses fan forum!

Please feel free to look around the forum as a guest, I hope you will find something of interest. If you want to join the discussions or contribute in other ways then you need to become a member. We especially welcome anyone who wants to share documents for our archive or would be interested in translating or transcribing articles and interviews.

Registering is free and easy.

Cheers!
SoulMonster
APPETITE FOR DISCUSSION
Welcome to Appetite for Discussion -- a Guns N' Roses fan forum!

Please feel free to look around the forum as a guest, I hope you will find something of interest. If you want to join the discussions or contribute in other ways then you need to become a member. We especially welcome anyone who wants to share documents for our archive or would be interested in translating or transcribing articles and interviews.

Registering is free and easy.

Cheers!
SoulMonster

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Page 2 of 2 Previous  1, 2

Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 4:25 am

Making it, without jumping a fence

August 9, 2011

Like more than a few of you readers (one would assume), I played youth football. Also like most of us, I look back at my time playing football and think in much more grandiose terms than what was probably the actual truth.

In my head, I was NFL material, of course. I mean, I did play with eventual Washington Huskies greats Hugh Millen and Mark Pattison way back then in youth football, and they went on to the NFL. I'm just sayin' …

Regardless, I of course never went that far in athletics, but found music instead. All the while -- and not unlike all of us sports wannabes -- I dreamed of a sparkling and undaunted football or baseball career.

I grew up in the shadow of Husky Stadium. It was this giant monolith in my back yard that made me and the other kids around my neighborhood dream about playing there one day. Millen and Pattison made it, while the rest of us rooted and wished. … I was envious.

Having Husky Stadium so close was a tease, too. As kids, we'd try to hop the fence on many occasions, just to run the field and throw the ball where our heroes like Sonny Sixkiller and Warren Moon played. But that fence proved unhoppable, and the security staff there proved good at their jobs, too.

Time moved on, life got busy and all the while those dreams of becoming a Husky faded without me being aware of it. I think anyone past college football or NFL age can probably understand what I am talking about.

If it was the Trojans, Buckeyes, Orangemen, Longhorns … or the Huskies … or whomever, those halcyon days of dreaming about "making the team" were just suddenly past, and we all started to live in some sort of real world or another.

My work took me away from the Northwest for quite some time, as I am sure many of you reading have also left your hometowns because of opportunities or other events in your lives.

For me, though, I've gotten a second chance of sorts. I'm back living in that neighborhood that is in the shadow of Husky Stadium and -- more importantly -- my great-nephew, high school standout Dexter Charles, is a true freshman offensive lineman on the Huskies squad. (Dexter is the grandson of one of my sisters, and my oldest nephew, Dennis, is his dad … confused? Good.) It's one of the coolest things ever in our family. He is a great kid and he likes to hit and intimidate an opponent. Cool things from where I sit …

And I get to live a bit vicariously through him for a bit here and there. On Monday, they opened up Husky practice to the public, and I got to finally enter that place not on a game day, without trying to scale a darn fence. There was my great-nephew, big ol' No. 76 … well, he will be big ol' No. 76 once he ends this latest growth spurt … For now, he is more accurately "fairly large ol' No. 76." I can't wait for his career here to start, for him … and for me.

As I was standing there gawking at the players on the field, and telling myself that perhaps I could maybe still suit up, my old friend Hugh Millen saddled up next to me. He has been doing an outstanding job up here in Seattle as a sports radio host, and he looks like he could still stiff-arm a dude or two on the gridiron.

It suddenly dawned on me, that … you know what? I was never meant to play any longer than I did. There are those on the field who work on their craft and train their bodies to grow and suffer more than you or I maybe do. Those are the ones we cheer on, and aspire to be.

In no way, thankfully, do I regret the path I took. As men, we look to athletics as a gauge of our manliness. Manliness, I think, is also about being content and confident in what you do now -- and not what "could've been," right?

Because, here is the deal: If it were you and me playing out there, no one would want to watch … We'd probably just look plain old funny.

Enough rambling for now. I'm ready for some football!

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked our columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Went and saw the "Hell On Earth" tour last weekend, featuring Slayer, Rob Zombie and Exodus. Suffice it to say, there were no teddy-bears and pink pom-poms to be found anywhere near. RAAAARRR … BLARR … or whatever.

Exodus -- "Deathamphetamine" from "Shovel Headed Kill Machine" (iTunes | Amazon): The perfect example of when hardcore punk and metal meshed. These guys were one of the true pioneers of thrash, but have been overlooked by many.

Rob Zombie -- "Living Dead Girl" from "Hellbilly Deluxe" (iTunes | Amazon): Classic Zombie storytelling of the creepiest kind. These guys have just simply been killing it live lately, and last Saturday night in Seattle marked the end of their epic two-year tour.

Slayer -- "Angel Of Death" from "Reign In Blood" (iTunes | Amazon): Oh yes, and then there is the almighty Slayer. I saw them on this "Reign In Blood" tour back in the 1980s, and they were totally unstoppable. Judging from the crowd at the WaMu Theater, they still are.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111206132417/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=6847682
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 4:33 am

Old Sonics remind us of what we lost
Or, more specifically, what was stolen from Seattle


August 10, 2011

It has been a few years since we've even thought of a "Sonic" in Seattle. A few years before that, we couldn't have imagined the two words "Sonics" and "Seattle" being separate. But alas, and all of a sudden, the mean ol' NBA took the Seattle SuperSonics away.

It is hard to fathom, but it seems to be that the city of Seattle has gotten used to now being just a two-sport town (major sports, that is). It hasn't been easy, as this area simply has a legion of ardent and hard-core fans of the NBA. More specifically, of a team called the SuperSonics.

The first year the Sonics were gone, people up here just sort of sat in dumbstruck disbelief. The lawsuit and subsequent trial, which labeled seller Howard Schultz and buyer Clay Bennett as the villains, would do nothing to bring our team back. I think the people up here knew that. I did. (Fans in 29 other NBA cities will get a taste of what Seattle went through if the lockout ends up canceling the upcoming season.)

The second year the Sonics were gone, the sickening quiet that can only be known to a metropolis whose love for its NBA team was only bested by its very vocal crowd presence, started to leaven and dampen our hopes.

By Year 3, we were used to it to some degree. Not cool with it, no … but getting used to it.

In sports, we are often the ones who get jerked around when business gets in the way too much. This fact could be seen no truer than when Schultz sold this team to an Oklahoma City-based ownership group. We knew then and there that they would want to move the team out of Seattle. New owner Bennett claimed he did not intend to move the team. Well, not until the next year. …

Rumor and speculation have been rearing their heads in Seattle ever since Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and company left. "Seattle would get a new team?" or "Seattle will never have a friend in the NBA until commissioner David Stern is gone!" or "Gary Payton is putting together a new ownership group to bring a team back to the Northwest," etc.

It was announced a couple of months ago that the Seattle Mariners would be holding a "Sonics Celebration Night" on July 29. Being the hard-core Sonics fan that I am, I made myself available to go to that game. I wasn't quite sure which old Sonics players were going to come, but just being around other Sonics fans, all together under one roof, was enticement enough.

Sonics games in the 1990s, more than any other Seattle sport before or since, were like attending a religious event. Around that court we would rally and rejoice and sometimes repent. But sinners or saints, we Seattlelites -- along with Nate and Gary and Shawn and George -- would gather together and weather the storm together. And it was good. Real good.

So here we were, the fans of those teams, all back together again … under one roof. The "Sonics Celebration" bit was set to happen a half-hour before the Mariners' first pitch. All-pro Sonics announcer Kevin Calabro came out on the field to announce the "Sonics legends" one at a time, we all lost our, uh, minds.

They were as follows:

Spencer Haywood
James Donaldson
Gus Williams
Slick Watts
former coach and player Lenny Wilkens
"Downtown" Freddie Brown
Jack Sikma
Tom Chambers
Dale Ellis
Michael Cage
Nate McMillan
Detlef Schrempf
Hersey Hawkins
Shawn Kemp
Gary Payton
and …
former coach George Karl

Payton came to the podium and spoke for all of the players. He told us how much Seattle meant to him as a basketball town and as a place that has always felt like a home to him. He told us how he thought Seattle got a raw deal in the team's move and that of all the cities in the United States, Seattle was the last place where it should have happened. He told us to hold tight; an NBA team would be back here, and soon! The crowd again lost its collective, uh, composure.

I want a team back. I actually want our team back, the one that is in Oklahoma City. But that would never happen. As a sports fan, I don't want to necessarily take some other city's team, but for us to get a team in that scenario, that means expansion. In this economy, expansion most likely won't happen anytime soon. So where does that leave us?

I just want an NBA team back here in Seattle. Me, and a whole legion of Sonics fans.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked our columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

"SuperSonics" by The Presidents Of The United States Of America: Maybe the best song ever written for a pro sports team.

"Not In Our House" by Sir Mix-A-Lot: There was a saying in Seattle at the KeyArena in the 90s: "NOT IN OUR HOUSE!" The slogan emerged for the simple reason that the Sonics rarely lost here for a whole chunk of years. Sir Mix-A-Lot put the slogan to song, and an instant classic was born.

"The Witch" by The Sonics: Because this Tacoma garage band was so good. Check it out.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111116053147/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=6825236
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 4:35 am

Big racing thrills in Small-town USA

August 17, 2011

All of the sports talk this past weekend seemed to be heavily slanted toward the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Watkins Glen, and the rain, and Dale Earnhardt Jr. not winning a race since 2008. Stock car racing, as we all know, is a huge deal, and rightly so. It is fascinating drama that unfolds right (er, or left) in front of us, and at ridiculously fast speed.

Have you ever wondered where these drivers come from? How do they get to be this good, or how do they get started in the "minor leagues" of this sport of auto racing?

I tour all over the world for a living, and when I get home, I like to get up over to Small-town USA for some summer fun. One of the things I like to do with my wife and kids is go to the Wenatchee Valley Super Oval, the "fastest quarter-mile in the Northwest."

In Central Washington, one can forget about being a "hipster," or otherwise "keeping up with the Joneses." People over here are hardworking and honest, and thus will take an outsider like me at face value. It ain't about what you have done lately over here, it is about if you know how to hold a ratchet, or if you can watch a super oval quarter-mile race and pick out a good driver's technique.

If you have had trouble getting into car racing as a fan, may I suggest taking a trip out to one of the small tracks somewhere on the outskirts of where you live because this is just plain, old, good-time fun.

And the minor leagues for car racing are here. Some of the best racing out at this oval track is done by the Youth Hornets, 14- to 17-year-olds who race fairly stock 3- or 4-cylinder little Nissans and Toyotas and such. This is where these kids initially learn the rubbin' is racin' edict. Either you've got the killer instinct, or you don't, and it becomes apparent pretty quickly in Youth Hornets who the rising stars are in racing.

The next big notch up in oval racing -- and where the stakes can start getting real, money-wise and getting-spotted-wise -- is the Super Mod. These are souped-up and extremely light modified cars that are built just for turning left. At well more than 500 horsepower, these 2,500-pound cars can get a-movin' in scary fashion.

But back to the "Small-town USA" aspect of this whole thing.

Ticket prices to this thing are $10.

Candy is 25 cents.

50-50 raffle tickets are $1 (if you win the raffle, you get half of everything they take in that night).

They don't sell beer, it is free (or rather, you can buy a wooden chip for $3, and then trade the chip in for a beer from the same person you buy the wooden token from).

Midway through the races, they bring all the cars out. They then open a gate so that all the fans can come out and get a close-up look at the cars and meet the drivers. The drivers put candy out on the hoods of the cars for the kids in attendance.

Kids can ride around the track between one of the heats on a "fun bus."

Because it is a small town, you are apt to meet at least one of the drivers somewhere in town. In my case, the guy we met, and ended up pulling for, came in second in the Mod class. Totally respectable. We felt like we had a "dog in the race." Nice work, Ben!

The next night, I took my daughters down to the K1 go-kart racing track in town. In big cities, we are used to paying $60 at one of these places. But in Wenatchee, you are only gonna pay a whopping $10.

These tracks are where the entry-level racers who just saw the super oval races the night before try to get a sense of what it feels like behind the wheel. My girls were psyched, and so was I. ( I mean, I had to race too, right? I had to protect my girls out on that track, right?)

As the race started, I could feel my testosterone and adrenaline pumping. I gassed it, and saw another grown man, and we began a heated rivalry. I totally forgot about my mission of protecting my girls. I needed to beat those other dudes.

We fought it out, and I have faint memories of pushing someone into the tires. But that's racing, right?

Wrong … I spun out my youngest daughter. What a schmuck.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked our columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Country music is a big deal over here in Small-town USA. I have a small collection of country stuff that I have grown into. James Otto is a country guy with some soul, who seems to be writing from a place that is real.

"Long Way Down" from "Days of Our Lives" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Close to a perfectly written song. Otto's baritone voice is that of the everyday man … if we could all sing like a man possessed.

"Gone" from "Days of Our Lives" -- I dig one word titled songs. Gone says it all here.

"Miss Temptation" from "Days of Our Lives" -- We all know one of these. Am I right, gentlemen?

https://web.archive.org/web/20111205203246/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=6866563
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 4:37 am

Returning to Canada not always smooth
It took 15 years for the Jets, but my band's adventure had its own travails


August 24, 2011

Many of you probably are already well aware that the great city of Winnipeg, Manitoba, has finally gotten an NHL hockey team back. After 15 years without the Jets, the little prairie city had at last received the good news in the spring that the Atlanta Thrashers were moving north.

I haven't been to Canada for a few years now. I do live in Seattle, and thus, only about 80 miles from the border, but playing rock shows up there is really only worth it if you have a string of dates north of the border.

The original Winnipeg Jets franchise was moved a decade and a half ago, all the way down to Arizona, and suddenly dubbed something called the Phoenix Coyotes. Being a Seattle Sonics fan, I totally get how that sudden loss of a team and a city's identity can throw fans into a tailspin of pain and suffering. And I can feel a kinship with the folks of another "Jet" city that had its first major-league franchise yanked out from under them.

Don't get me wrong, places such as Phoenix and Oklahoma City totally deserve major league franchises. If a city can support a team, then let it happen. But at the expense of a small but rigorous market like Winnipeg, it just seems like unfair bullying.

Last weekend, my band, Loaded, played a one-off show in Winnipeg, at the Canadian "Rock On the Range" festival with Alice in Chains and others. Like Winnipeg, Loaded is still "small market." Of course, like the business people, civic leaders and citizenry of Winnipeg who never gave up their quest to bring the NHL back despite sometimes long odds, we have the heart of a champion but have yet to grow in size to a place where we can wield a mighty hammer. We still get bullied ourselves a bit at places such as customs and immigration stops at international border crossings and shared merchandise tables at gigs.

I have been in rock bands that have spent their fair share of time in the limelight. It comes in handy being well-known at times. If you come through customs and immigration in Canada, for instance, and you are recognized by an officer for being in such-and-such a rock band, chances are good you won't be mistaken as a drug-runner or other border-crosser-with-bad-intent hooligan. In Loaded's case, we were taken to secondary inspection at immigration at the Vancouver, British Columbia, airport on Friday. We were mistaken for something other than a rock band.

Canadian cities, such as Winnipeg, Edmonton and Calgary, should never, ever be mistaken for anything other than hockey towns. This is center-ice ground zero, and for Winnipeg to have ever have lost an NHL franchise in the first place seems almost diabolical. Ripping the hearts out of hard-core hockey fans and moving their team to a place in the desert that wasn't exactly clamoring for an NHL team isn't fair. But this is big business and with big money at stake, other "players" come into the fore. Commissioners, out-of-town deep-pocket ownership, etc.

I tried to explain to a Canadian Immigration officer that my band was only going to play a show, and this show was for a Canadian company. We had the right paperwork, and none of us is a felon or has ever had trouble of any kind in Canada. I saw that the queue in front of us appeared to be a four-hour line. That's not 15 years long, mind you, but close to it in airport time. If we had to wait, we would simply miss the plane, and hence the gig. I asked this officer to simply "let us through or send us back," because waiting for four hours would serve no purpose at all. It made sense to me, but not to him.

Six weeks ago, Winnipeg got their Jets back. The city was totally on fire with celebration. The city of about 690,000 on the Canadian prairies finally got major-league hockey to see the light. With a couple of good owners and a new arena right in the middle of town, the NHL leaders and power brokers finally saw the light and the errors of their past. Top-level hockey is back in a home where people love it and are passionate about the sport. Makes plain sense to me.

When the immigration officer at the airport rebuffed my plain sense talk, we thought of one last angle; call the promoter in Winnipeg. We were not supposed to use our phones in immigration, but our dilemma was such that we threw caution to the wind. The promoter called the immigration office at the Vancouver airport. Before we knew it, that same immigration officer was sailing us through to our next flight. He did have to make one last snide remark, though, this time to our guitar player: "Hey, Jack Black … sing me a song." Our guitar player is not Jack Black. Our guitar player -- by this time pretty damn tired of these customs and immigration charades -- did not fancy being derided. "The heck with you, mall cop," he said back. But he didn't say "heck."

Winnipeg said "the heck with you, NHL," and did finally get their team back home safe and sound. Loaded said "the heck with you" to that Canadian customs officer, and yet still made it to our "home," that being a rock stage at the very same MTS Centre that the Jets will be playing this season.

Ah, but coming home on Sunday, back through U.S. Customs was a whole new adventure. Not fun. Apparently, we are now a marked band there at the Vancouver airport customs agencies. Oh, well.

Although Seattle still needs a new arena and a wealthy ownership group similar to True North Sports & Entertainment, which bought and moved the Thrashers to Winnipeg, I'm heartened that my dreams of an NBA team returning to the Emerald City might be realized. … Hopefully sooner than 15 years. I always pull for the underdog, so in the meantime, Go, Jets!

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked our columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Let's go Canadian here music-wise, too.

D.O.A. -- "The Prisoner" from "Bloodied But Unbowed" (iTunes | Amazon): Definitely a top-five punk rock single of all time. Joey S***head, Randy Rampage and Chuck Biscuits were the all-time best at what they did. This 1978 single still stands the test of time.

Modernettes -- "Barbra" from "Get It Straight" (iTunes | Amazon): Pop-punk from Vancouver was the best ever. Guitar player Buck Cherry is genius on all of the Modernettes stuff. Check it out.

Teenage Head -- "Let's Go to Hawaii" from "Some Kinda Fun" (iTunes | Amazon): This late '70s Toronto punk band was one of the most overlooked bands of that era. Give 'em a listen.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111210164457/http://espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=6889887


Last edited by Blackstar on Sun Dec 26, 2021 4:41 am; edited 1 time in total
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 4:40 am

Highs and lows of radio drive time

August 31, 2011

So last weekend, my band, Loaded, continued our rock tour -- the same one that almost put us behind bars in Guantanamo two weeks ago for the un-American act of trying to cross a border with (gasp) guitars and tattoos. Ah, but during this past week, we were in the simpler confines of the Northwest, home to this band and home to fans who are familiar with Loaded. Two good things, indeed.

The first gig was a rock-radio affair up near Seattle. You know the kind: Your local FM rock radio station more than likely has one of these per year. A five-band bill, lots of booze, "calendar girls," heat and a fair share of drunken knuckleheads (I used to be one of those latter-mentioned drunken knuckleheads, but now I just prefer to think of myself as a tea-totaling buffoon).

The gig the following day was another rock-radio "summerfest" outside of Portland, Ore. The difference with the Portland show, though, was the blaring fact that Portland's rock station no longer exists. Yes, like the drying up of some of the larger newspapers in this country, advertisement revenue has been wreaking havoc on some of our last great independent radio stations.

Sports radio in major cities with major league teams have been able to stay relatively strong, and many have remained independent too (KJR sports radio in Seattle is a great and shining example, even after 710 ESPN radio started up in the same town). But I am a fan of sports radio and will always try to find whatever I can, wherever in this country I might be.

I have also been a radio nerd of sorts since I was a little kid. I still love to find faraway broadcasts late at night. When I am in Central Washington camping, I have picked up stations off the "skip," from as far away as New Mexico and Texas. The "skip" refers to a radio signal bouncing off, unimpeded, the top part of our atmosphere and traveling greater distances because of it. The area where the signals bounce off this ionosphere is higher at night, allowing them to travel even farther. At least this is how I understand it.

We left the Seattle show after the gig sometime that night. We wanted to get to Portland, get into our hotel, and get a good night's sleep. Driving after a gig, I like to listen to sports radio. Leaving Seattle, it was of course, easy to pick up either ESPN radio or KJR, but at the rate of speed that I drive (yes, I don't drink alcohol, so the worst a cop can do to me is give me a speeding ticket), we quickly started to lose our radio signal.

No worries, I like trying to find those faraway stations on the skip. Well, lo and behold, I landed smack dab on KSFO, the AM station that carries San Francisco Giants games. If you are not familiar with West Coast geography, let me just inform you, that I was a good 700 miles from the Bay Area. And there I was, all caught-up in the late-night replay of that night's Giants game against the Houston Astros.

To those of you with satellite radio in your car, this all may seem just sort of quaint and dumb, but I am old-school. Terrestrial AM and FM radio are just things that I believe cannot be bettered. Take from that what you will. …

At the radio-show without the radio station in Portland that next day, the crowd seemed so much more into it. You could sense that they felt a bit left out and small. They let each and every one of the bands we played with know that Portland should remain a tour stop no matter what. All of those bands took notice (Korn, Chevelle, All That Remains, Loaded and Five Finger Death Punch).

On the way out of Portland on Sunday night, I found "Sports Radio 750 The Game" -- Portland's self-promoted "home" of sports. It carries Trail Blazers, Ducks, Timbers and Dodgers games.

That makes sense. Wait … What? Dodgers games? In Portland, Ore.? What about the Mariners?

They are only 170 miles away. Or the Giants? They are about 600 miles away. But the Dodgers? That team is a cool 1,000 miles away. I checked to see if this was on some sort of "skip," but it wasn't.

What gives here?

Hey, Portland! If you are going to pick some random team out of nowhere to air its baseball games, maybe find some team that doesn't have the McCourts as its owners … for now, anyway.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Korn -- "Get Up!" single featuring Skrillex (iTunes | Amazon): I've seen this band since its inception. The good, the bad and the "just OK." In the past few months I have seen them multiple times, on two different continents, and I must say they have simply just never been better. If you get the chance, go see Korn. It's goooood!

All That Remains -- "The Last Time" from "For We Are Many" (iTunes | Amazon): I've played a few gigs over the past couple of years, with this affable group of Northeast rockers. These guys mean it, and they execute their music with edge and severe aplomb. ATR is a kick-ass and real beast not to be trifled with.

Chevelle -- "Jars" from "Sci-Fi Crimes" (iTunes | Amazon): What can you say? This band has now been around for 12 years and is seemingly going stronger than ever. And, heck, these guys chose their band's name because they are all total gearheads!

https://web.archive.org/web/20111129210654/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=6904914


Last edited by Blackstar on Sun Dec 26, 2021 5:06 am; edited 1 time in total
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 5:06 am

Geeked up for my football fantasia

September 7, 2011

Most of you who have been reading this column of mine here at ESPN for sure know by now that I am far from a sports statistician or analyst. Nope, I could actually give a flying fudge about most of the more banal and intellectual odds and bits about the particular games that I follow. I'm just an everyday fan who hopes his teams will win that year.

So, if you know that about me, then you may find this next part quizzical.

I am now entering my third year as a fantasy footballer. Not only do I play the game, but I am also in a league whose players are pretty damn competitive. The Alice in Chains & Friends Fantasy Football Charity League (quite a mouthful, so let's go with AIC&FFCL; from now on) is chock-full of rock dudes like myself. For whatever reason, "rock guys" have, in a large part, always wanted to be sports guys. I've heard that the opposite was true. Regardless, many of my fantasy football colleagues do not share my aloofness and sense of humor about the sports games.

But, all of my humor seems to go away as the moment for the actual draft comes upon our league. I've got my draft CliffsNotes from my earnest young nephew Andrew (a 16-year-old dude who does stats like no other). I'm sitting here Tuesday evening next to Alice in Chains guitarist Jerry Cantrell, and ESPN's NFL theme song suddenly starts to chime as the "players" sign in for the draft. My jaw starts to clench, and my teeth start to grind. The funny-ness of thinking in terms of "who cares?" gives way to good old-school competitiveness -- and of being out of my league.

Yes, but I am truly lucky to have a future ESPN sports analyst as a nephew. Andrew hooks me up ahead of time. He sends me a well-developed round-by-round list of players to draft, and gives me plenty of alternates in case these players get drafted from underneath me.

But Jerry doesn't like it so much if I don't play from my own knowledge. At least that's what I tell myself. I stash Andrew's list, and go it alone, trying to remember by rote what my nephew had instructed me. But I went blank.

Jerry is a good dude. He is competitive, to be sure, but he and I share a lot of the same traits and have even gone to a Super Bowl together.

We are both sports fans of the highest order. But he knows the game much better, in a stats sort of way, than I do. He expects from others the same passion for this game that he has. I'm getting there with fantasy football but am nowhere near his echelon yet.

The other guys in the league are well-versed too. Vinnie Paul and Mike Inez are no slouches. Newbie to the league, and sole female player Ann Wilson from Heart, brought much game and smack talk to the draft. Chris DeGarmo of Queensryche fame, brought his intellect to these IQ-deprived FF shores (yes, DeGarmo flies jets these days. That's right. Jets, J-E-T-S, Jets.).

So there I sat at "zero-hour." The mind was blank and I forgot how the ESPN draft site even worked. It was 110 degrees in the San Fernando Valley, and Jerry's air conditioning was only half-working. I started to sweat. I got jerked around by the draft's computerized random order and was the last pick in the first round, but at least I had some extra time to gather myself.

So, how did I do?

I will do this as a sort of "Simon Says" sort of exercise. That is, what did my nephew Andrew suggest, how much of it did I retain, and lastly and most importantly, who did I draft.

First round: Andrew said, Ray Rice. I got Roddy White.

Second round: Andrew said, Vincent Jackson. I got Rashard Mendenhall.

Third round: Andrew said Tony Romo. I got Ahmad Bradshaw.

Fourth round: Andrew said to pick Mario Manningham. I remembered it as Mike Williams.

Fifth round: Andrew's pick was Brandon Marshall. I got Ben Roethlisberger.

Sixth round: he suggested Anquan Boldin. I received Mario Manningham.

Seventh round: He, Mike Tolbert. Me, Owen Daniels.

Eighth round: Andrew, Owen Daniels. Duff, Pierre Thomas (I was only one round off on Daniels)

Ninth round: Andrew suggested Percy Harvin, and I ultimately got Steve Smith of the Panthers.

10th round: Emmanuel Sanders vs. Eli Manning as my backup quarterback.

And etc. …

At the end of the day, I got a pretty good team in my AIC&FFCL; draft. But as you can also see, I don't have the best skill when it comes to name-retention. It is all a game of chance anyway because of the timing of your fantasy team's head-to-head matchups, and who knows what will happen with injuries and so on.

The auto-pick feature seemed to be working well for those two players in our league who didn't draft for themselves, "Mad Men" actor Jay Ferguson and Brewers pitcher Randy Wolf. (I guess Wolf had a pretty good reason for his online absence because the draft conflicted with Milwaukee's game in St. Louis.) I might get spanked by both of these teams, even after all of this toil and sweat I put in.

And before we get too caught up in who got the best fantasy draft, let's not forget that we have the real article about to commence this week. In a year that saw a lockout and the threat of no season at all, the fact we are even playing fantasy football at all should not be lost on us. The real deal is here, y'all. And I, for one, am psyched. Go 'Hawks!

Now, back, to business, do I start Roethlisberger versus the Ravens or Manning against the Redskins? I'm not even at Jerry's house anymore and I'm starting to sweat. … Let's play some (fantasy) football!

*

AIC&FFFCL; Kicks Off Year Three

Duff McKagan joins his pal Jerry Cantrell for the third season of the Alice in Chains & Friends Fantasy Football Charity League, which you can learn more about here.

Cantrell has rounded up another impressive cast of rock stars, plus Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Randy Wolf and "Mad Men" actor Jay Ferguson.

Each participant chooses a worthy charity to represent and puts a valuable item up for auction, scheduled to take place after the season. The AIC&FFFCL; champion's chosen charity then receives the net proceeds of the online auction.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111126182351/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=6932893
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 5:09 am

Spinning, a lot, for war veteran heroes

September 14, 2011

On Sunday, we all probably took a step back. The 10-year anniversary of 9/11 more than likely had different effects on all of us. A lot of us, it seems, at least knew of a family that had lost someone during the terrorist attacks. More still, have a friend who knew a family that was affected. Or, worst of all, some of you reading had, indeed, lost a loved one. It is possible to take that thought a step further, and muse that there were sports fans in the Twin Towers, that may have otherwise even been gandering at ESPN.com on this very day.

No matter what, we were all profoundly changed by that day in 2001, and the days, weeks and months that followed.

Many young men and women saw these attacks as their clarion call to arms. Enlistment in our U.S. armed forces swelled. Not since Dec. 7, 1941, when Pearl Harbor was bombed, had we seen such a massive jump at enlistment offices all around the United States, according to National Public Radio. We had been attacked, and our young generation in America was going to try to make sure that events like these would not and could not happen again. This was their time to rise to this dark and evil occasion.

For obvious reasons, when we read newspaper accounts, or hear TV and radio reports on Afghanistan and Iraq, we hear about the "death toll." I am in awe of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. Whether you support these wars is not right now important, as I just want to focus you all on these brave men and women who travel to scary places, doing what they believe most often to be a calling to make our shores a safer place to live and breathe and work, travel, raise a family and, yes, watch and talk about sports.

But so many more of these young people have come back wounded from the battle-front. Forty thousand of them, as of this writing. Many of these kids have suffered dismemberment, organ damage, brain damage and other acute disfigurement or psychological effects. We can only imagine what else.

To be sure, there doesn't seem to be enough recognition and, more than that, support for these wounded veterans' post-return to the States. Post-return, to a new and alien life with physical and mental disabilities. I do know one guy, though, who is doing his best to single-handedly make a difference and dedicate his time, skill and energy to a few of these Vets.

I wrote last winter of my friend Tim Medvetz. He's a biker, a world-class mountaineer, an endurance athlete, a martial artist and a stubborn man who won't listen when people tell him certain things might just be "too difficult." No, Tim doesn't seem to understand the definition of the word "no," or its negative connotation.

Medvetz, too, found himself in a hospital bed after a nearly life-ending motorcycle accident that occurred on Sept. 9, 2001. When he regained consciousness two days later in the hospital intensive care unit, it was of course Sept. 11. His first conscious sight was of the North Tower coming down on the TV in his room; all of the doctors and nurses were faced away from Tim, agape and tear-filled-witnessing the horror.

As the days progressed for Tim in that hospital, it became clear that his life and well-being would forever be changed because of the bike accident. Tim, a native New Yorker, not only had to deal with the new paradigm we all faced in those days and weeks that followed 9/11, but he also had to come to grips with the fact that he would have to endure countless surgeries to his back, feet and legs, and that the doctors would have to employ titanium and fusing techniques just to put Tim back together again.

They said he'd be a cripple for life. But they couldn't put a titanium cage around the heart and pride of this dude. Nope, he found inspiration in that hospital bed. First, it was in his reading of Jon Krakauer's "Into Thin Air," a epic true tale of the 1996 Mount Everest tragedy. After all that the doctors had told Tim of the limitations that he would now face physically, he left that hospital two months later with a new mission: to summit Mount Everest. He did.

Flash forward to this past Sunday -- 9/11/11. Tim has a foundation now, The Heroes Project, a self-started non-profit organization in which Tim has pledged to guide an amputee veteran of the Afghanistan or Iraq wars, up each of the seven highest mountains on this planet.

Tim's call came when, on a flight home from some climb of his own, he ran across an Iraq vet who was just then coming home from Walter Reed Hospital in Bethesda, Md. Freshly outfitted with a prosthetic leg and arm, there was scant little more after-care for this young man. The kid was hopeless and not a little depressed. He felt that his life was over, and that he was maybe even forgotten to a certain extent. Tim asked him if he could stay in touch. One year later, Tim and this young man scaled the summit of Africa's Mount Kilimanjaro. Epic stuff.

On Sunday, Tim held a fundraiser for three of his new friends whom he will be climbing with:

Noah Galloway: He served in the U.S. Army's 101st Airborne Division during the invasion of Iraq and beyond. He then re-enlisted for a second deployment, during which a roadside bomb forced Noah to face life now, as a double amputee (left leg and left arm). Noah will climb Carstensz Pyramid in Indonesia with Tim next month.

Mark Zambon: A U.S. Marine Corps veteran, Mark will climb Mount Aconcagua in Argentina in January. Being a fairly recent double amputee has not seemed to outwardly affect Mark. It is no wonder. In reading his bio on the Heroes Project website, we learn that he redeployed with a partially amputated hand (from a bomb in Iraq). On his fifth tour, he was again hit by a bomb -- the one that took both of his legs.

Marissa Strock: Of Marissa's eighth attack in Baghdad as an MP, she remembers very little. When she came to from a months-long coma, she had found that she had lost a foot. Marissa has had to deal with so much more than we can ever even imagine. But from what I witnessed in person Sunday, she is gonna kick Tim Medvetz's tail all of the way up Mount Kilimanjaro come spring.

On a personal note, I had the pleasure and honor of being invited to this event. Tim is a joker to a large extent, and it always seems, to me, that I am the main focus of his jabs. I do climb with Tim, but nothing more than some very minor mountains here and there. I've ridden mountain bikes with him, too, and generally I try to simply keep up when he is in training for this or that.

On Sunday, he asked me to get on a spinning bike next to Noah for three hours (McKagan don't "spin"). "Three hours, Tim?!" I blurted.

"Yeah, dude. Listen Duff, if you wanna be a p**** and only ride for an hour, that's fine. Noah is riding for the whole three, and he has a prosthetic leg from above his knee, and is missing his left arm."

Ah, crap …

Luckily for me, Noah was a cool guy and sort of took it easy on me. Our goal was to ride for three hours, to raise money for the Heroes Project and these three vets' upcoming climbs. Noah is a badass, and has been training like a fiend. Neither of us are real big on spinning, though. No matter how tough you are, there is absolutely nothing you can do to toughen up your, uh, undercarriage.

Please visit The Heroes Project website for more information.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

In keeping with the spirit of this week's topic, I've picked some songs that represent the spirit of our wounded veterans.

Merle Haggard -- "The Fightin' Side Of Me" (iTunes | Amazon): This song seems to sum up the conversation that I had with double amputee Noah Galloway. He is a guy who just seems to get the big picture.

Thin Lizzy -- "Fight My Way Back" (iTunes | Amazon): This song epitomizes these war veterans I met Sunday. Fighting their way back for sure!

Foo Fighters -- "Walk" (iTunes | Amazon): Need I say more?

https://web.archive.org/web/20111127194933/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=6967336
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 5:12 am

Besides the punch, are we suckers?

September 21, 2011

At the risk of stating the obvious, the sport of boxing has taken a big downward hit as far as mainstream popularity over the past 15 years. To begin with, we are missing our vaunted champions and our hated villains. To add to that, the overall quality in the heavyweight division (historically the "major league" attraction of boxing), has experienced a nosedive since the days of Tyson/Lewis/Holyfield.

To be sure, the sport of mixed martial arts has filled this void in a large way. Since the halcyon days of the mixed martial arts, featuring Royce Gracie in his judo gee taking on all comers, and MMA's growth since then, boxing has played second fiddle. Has the talent pool of quality fighters run pell-mell to MMA gyms because of the skyrocketing popularity of that sport? Yeah, maybe so.

With all of that being said, I still was really looking forward to watching the Floyd Mayweather Jr.-Victor Ortiz fight, a bout that, on paper, seemed one-sided in Mayweather's favor. But there was that intangible "what if" that I think drew more than a few of us to find a way to watch this fight. In my case, my good buddy Slash had purchased the fight and invited me up to his pad. OK, cool. This was going to be fun.

A mildly interesting side note to the fact that Slash and I would be watching this fight together is that we are in no way strangers to things and events that may have had a modicum of drama attached to them. It goes almost without saying that it probably takes a bit more to rattle either one of us than the usual "Joe." But even to us, the outcome and aftermath of this fight left the both of us a little agape. When Larry Merchant finally said the now infamous "I wish I was 50 years younger and I'd kick your …" to Mayweather, even Slash commented then and there that he couldn't believe what he was watching.

Again, we have seen a lot of crap and fallout and unbelievable nonsense over the past 25 years. Things that are beyond unmentionable here at ESPN.

Sports news talking heads were saying that Mayweather was dominating the fight. Me? I didn't see it that way at all. Sure, his percentage of punches that got through were dwarfing Ortiz's, but percentages only count if a fight goes the full distance. From where I sat, it seemed that either fighter could and would throw the knockout punch at any time. Furthermore, Ortiz had taken a couple of great shots from Mayweather and almost laughed them off. It seemed to be anyone's fight. But then Ortiz did that bizarre head-butt.

Was this just theater? And, let us not forget, that this fight was a joint Mayweather-Golden Boy production. If anyone knows that boxing needs a bump in TV ratings and interest, it would be them.

I'm not usually the "conspiracy theory" type, but what happened Saturday night has got me to thinking.

How is it, that the referee Cortez kept his head turned away from the fight after he called the technical and pulled the point from Ortiz. He did resume the fight, did he not? Doesn't Floyd Mayweather Jr. sort of bask in the light of controversy? Controversy is the old-school Muhammad Ali-Howard Cosell way to hype the game, no?

Of course we all know now that as Cortez and Ortiz had their heads turned, Mayweather then executed the left-right KO punches that "won" this fight. The ensuing chaos and dialogue between Mayweather and HBO announcer Larry Merchant, will forever be a thing of legend.

The real kicker for me, and perhaps the reason I most think that this whole fight was just some sort of crafty ruse, was Ortiz's corner non-reaction to the outcome. Wouldn't you think there would be a whole ton of protest?

And Ortiz himself seemed to take it all in stride, in an acute "aw, shucks" sort of way. I instantly felt myself feeling a bit swindled.

I could of course, be completely wrong about my suspicions. I am just an ordinary fan, and in no way really know how I would react if I were Ortiz, but the ensuing "party line" across the board, seemed to be "protect yourself at all times" … as if it were all rehearsed beforehand.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Up in Seattle this week, a celebration of Nirvana's "Nevermind" 20-year mark will be taking place at the Experience Music Project museum. With that being said, let us remember …

"Lithium" from "Nevermind" (iTunes | Amazon): Nirvana were the kings of taking a simple yet uncanny guitar line and crafting great rock songs. Almost pop, if you will. "I'm so ugly/ but that's OK/ 'cause so are you/ we've broke our mirrors." Daunting, dark, beautiful.

"Smells Like Teen Spirit" from "Nevermind": The perfect anthem for a whole legion of disenfranchised youth.

"Come As You Are" from "Nevermind": One drummer. One bass player. One guitarist-singer. Massive sound. There are few better or even in this league.

https://web.archive.org/web/20110924081623/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=6997614
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 5:19 am

Stoked after two weekend wins

September 28, 2011

Ahh … at long last, we here in Seattle had a two-win weekend. It has been a while since we could remain positive on both a Saturday and a Sunday about our football teams (or actually, baseball, too), but it finally happened. The University of Washington Huskies and the Seattle Seahawks both win.

We have learned to live with it in our town … the taste of defeat. The Huskies' excursion into the darkness happened way back when we opted for "Slick" Rick Neuheisel to coach back in 1999, and then got worse with Keith Gilbertson and Tyrone Willingham.

The Seahawks have had only a few glimpses of light ever since the loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 2006 Super Bowl. Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck showed us how to win in the playoffs last year, but he has taken his talents to Tennessee since then, and at 7-9 we should never have even made those playoffs.

But now the Huskies have a seemingly great new coach in Steve Sarkisian, and while the sleek and fast look of Sark's recruitments to the Huskies is a new sight for us, the speed on offense seems to be working. The Huskies are 3-1, and probably could have been closer to being 4-0 if the referees down in Nebraska had not gotten in the way. But that is another story. …

And the Hawks?

What do we take away from Sunday's 13-10 victory over our NFC West rivals, the Arizona Cardinals? It was great to see maligned quarterback Tarvaris Jackson finally sync up with wide receiver Sidney Rice and to see our defense stop a team when it counted. It was nice to finally get a win this season after opening on the road with two losses, and I shall not give up hope of a "rebuilding-esque" .500 season. With our schedule though, the Seahawks will have to overachieve their demonstrated talent level to get there.

Next week is Atlanta at home. I'm not trying to jinx ya, Seahawks, but we could win this game. The Falcons (1-2) are up against a wall of sorts.

If the Huskies really want to try to have a difference-making game for this season, I would assume that this game Saturday against new Pac-12 rival Utah would be it. Could you imagine? For sure, the Huskies are a young team but could you imagine what a win in Utah would do for this outfit? It could happen.

I for one, am happy to just muse right now. Assuming a win for your team is something that is afforded after a two-win weekend.

Check out 'Warrior'
Go see "Warrior." If you liked "Rocky" and "The Fighter," then get yourself to the theater for this new fight flick. I rode my mountain bike up Laurel Canyon four times the next morning …

*

'It's So Easy: And Other Lies' Out Now

ESPN.com The Life columnist Duff McKagan's new book, "It's So Easy: And Other Lies," just came out, and you can order it at Amazon.com.

You can also check out an excerpt by clicking here.

After its first week, "It's So Easy: And Other Lies" was No. 17 on The New York Times nonfiction bestseller list, and it is currently No. 2 on Book Soup's nonfiction bestseller list.

*


McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Speaking of Seattle, I am in an ESPN fantasy football charity league with all of the members of Alice in Chains. My team sucks thus far and hence, their teams have benefited. Oh, well. Go get yourself some AIC, y'all.

"Angry Chair" from "Dirt" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Where I was for the first two games of this NFL season. It is where I still am when it comes to the fantasy game!

"Down In A Hole" from "Dirt" -- See above comment for "Angry Chair," and apply to "Down In A Hole."

"Love, Hate, Love" from "Facelift" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Simply, this song just rocks. Period. End of story.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111023114634/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7027043
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 5:23 am

When is pushing the limits too extreme?

October 5, 2011

No doubt some of you reading here are the types who may fit the category of "active." You may snowboard, kickbox or train in mixed martial arts, skateboard, fly planes, surf, climb mountains. Or perhaps you simply run, ride a bike or go to the gym. A whole higher-echelon level of these types of people simply take things to the extreme -- and some even become a pro in any of these above-mentioned disciplines.

I, myself, go hiking from time to time with a friend of mine, Tim, who is constantly training for some high-altitude mountain someplace on this planet. He is a true mountaineer and has made the summit of some of the biggest mountains in the world, including Mount Everest and Mount Denali.

Me? Oh no, no. I just tag along on some minor peaks with him when I am down in Southern California. Last weekend we "bagged" the summit of 10,000-plus feet Mount Baldy, an arduous scramble but nothing to really write home about.

But we have done Baldy in the winter, too, and during that season up there you will inevitably hear about someone falling off. Falling off a mountain rarely ends up good.

I am an extreme guy. I like dangerous stuff and also like to test myself, from time to time, to see what I "have." Even on these little peaks, plenty of what they call "exposure with consequence" takes place. A nice way to say that is "if you fall, you die." I hope my wife doesn't read this column. …

OK, but that is just me. I am "bush league" when it comes to this kind of danger and just all-around putting-myself-out-there-ness. I am self-confident and fairly athletic. I trust to a certain degree that I can hold my balance and power through certain dodgy moments. I even sort of get off on this stuff. Again, the stuff I do is minor! Then, there are guys like Tim and his high-altitude colleagues.

As Tim and I were traversing something called Devil's Backbone up on Baldy, he was explaining to me that, when we do this in the winter, I would be roped in, and that we would use some ice-screws and etc. The fall from this trail is not a survivable deal. "OK," I thought to myself. "I won't be doing this in the winter." …

Tim went on to tell me a story about when he and a Sherpa were coming down the north face of Everest after his summit, they were traversing a 6-inch ledge, and the drop-off was one mile down to Tibet. Tim and the Sherpa had ice-screwed a rope into the side of the ice, and the rope acted as a sort of a hand-hold. Suddenly though, one of the ice-screws pulled out, then another, and another. They fell.

Hanging upside down, Tim lost the use of his bladder, and his heart was beating so fast, that he literally thought it would come out of his chest. Luckily for these two guys, the last two ice-screws held, and after they righted themselves they climbed back up and traversed the rest of that knife-edge trail to safety. Yet, he still climbs. He told me that he kind of got off on the experience.

There was a Swedish skier named Tomas Olsson on the north face of Everest on that climb. A kid, really. His goal was to successfully summit Everest, and then be the first man to ski down the north face of that mountain. This young man, Tim told me, had all of the self-confidence, athleticism and, well, balls in the world. But in the end, that "daring" and self-confidence did him in. He did summit, but the north face of Everest is sheer ice. This lad put on his skis, and that was the last anyone ever saw him alive.

This story got me to thinking. How can we gauge ourselves when we are going too far?

I think people pushing themselves to become the first to achieve something so physically taxing is a great and amazing thing to watch and experience. It is just when self confidence, athleticism, bravery and thrills gets pushed too far, they can turn caustic.

We work hard, and train, and get more and more in tune with our bodies as we push our physical limits. But when putting our skills to the test have we trained ourselves to fully understand when to tell ourselves "no mas"? How does one develop a "pride" turn-off button?

To Hall with them …

I was utterly surprised and a bit overwhelmed last week when I woke up in the early morning to my BlackBerry beeping without end. Guns N' Roses, a band I co-founded, was nominated for the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. I am very grateful for all of the well-wishes I have received here at ESPN, and everywhere else. Thank you.

But we in that band are relatively young dudes, and I was astonished to see just who hadn't yet made that Hall of Fame. Older artists who have paid their dues in full and have changed how we approach and look at music. Faces? Motorhead? It's a big list. Look it up.

And while I am on the subject of halls of fame. Rock and roll is all good and fine, but when you talk about baseball and football, it is, indeed, a whole and different other league.

How about Seattle Mariners legend Edgar Martinez? It's time, National Baseball Hall Of Fame voters. It is time.

I think Martinez, who hit .312 with 309 home runs, 1,261 RBIs and 514 doubles over 18 seasons, was by far the most effective designated hitter in the history of the game. Yes, I said it.

Martinez, who won two American League batting titles, also earned his impressive numbers in the steroids era, yet his name has never been linked with Bonds, McGwire, Sosa, Palmeiro, et al.

The AL's DH has been around long enough to reward players at that position who performed at an elite level with the highest honor. It's time to send one of them to the Hall of Fame, no?

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Faces: "Ooh La La" from "Ooh La La" (iTunes | Amazon) -- One of the best rock songs out there, ever. Before there was "Rod Stewart" and "The Jeff Beck Group" and before Ronnie Wood was in The Rolling Stones, the Faces ruled everything.

Faces: "Stay With Me" from "A Nod Is As Good As a Wink to a Blind Horse" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Yeah, you know the song. This song is good on so many levels, and personifies the genre of "rock 'n' roll."

Faces: "Pool Hall Richard" from "The Best Of Faces: Good Boys When They're Asleep" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Get yourself a little deeper into the Faces catalog. You shall be doing yourself a favor!

https://web.archive.org/web/20111109000139/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7059324
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 5:26 am

New York fans, I'm sorry … a little

October 11, 2011

Like a lot of you who travel for business, I have ended up in New York City countless times over the past 25 years. It is the first American city that my band Guns N' Roses really "broke" in, outside of our hometown of Los Angeles. That city has hard angles and tough people, and they seemed to love my band's music.

Over the years, I have played too many gigs to count in New York and have made some very good friends there, too. My record company is there, and my book company is there. I am connected to Manhattan and know it well.

But I am a Seattle sports fan. When it comes to sports and games, New York has always been that all-too-powerful, rich, big market that just seems so unstoppable, which comes off to the rest of us as just unfair. I could, therefore, never have much empathy for the Yankees, Jets or Knicks when they would lose. You KNEW that their ownership would spend enough to make it "right" for the next season.

But last week, I spent six consecutive days in that city promoting my new book. I got to my hotel in time to watch the whole second half of the New York Jets getting shellacked by the Baltimore Ravens, and then the New York Yankees losing Game 3 of the American League Division Series to the Detroit Tigers. I was out in the city the next day, and actually for the first time ever, felt bad for some of my friends and acquaintances who are from that town. I do know a thing or two about having a losing team, after all. …

But the Yankees came back in Game 4 and absolutely trounced the Tigers in Detroit to set up what seemed to be another inevitable trip to the World Series for the Bronx Bombers. For Game 5, I was in a car, driving back from Huntington on Long Island, and we listened to the second through seventh innings.

I got back to my hotel TV for the last innings of that game. Alex Rodriguez looked awful. Derek Jeter tried for some of his heroics but fell short. Their pitching looked tired and used up. The Yankees looked just plain human for once, and they lost. Surprisingly, I actually felt terrible for those fans.

I think it is like that in any town in which I spend some time. If my teams are out of the running, which was obviously the case here with the M's, I will look for an alternate team for the postseason -- no matter how much I might still resent that long-ago Mariner A-Rod.

Being in New York, and with New Yorkers, I started to see a human side to Yankees fans that I had never wanted to see before this. You demonize your opponent and its fan base, no?

The next morning, I was up early to work in Manhattan, and the whole city seemed quiet and bummed. Detroit seems to be the city of destiny this year (both Tigers and Lions), and might I say that these teams have their due. But as I watched the Jets lose again this past Sunday to the Patriots, I had to think of that city, and the unsettling quiet that must have certainly been there come Monday morning.

Now, the Giants losing is a whole different story. It was my Seahawks that they lost to and my city has got you beat New York -- by a long shot -- in the losing department.

Go Hawks!

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

My good buddy, native New Yorker Pete Hopkinson, has been busy laying down some serious blues over the past 20 or so years. Petey and I go way back, and he is one SOB who has proven that a tough New Yorker will have your back like no other. Check him out!

"The Levee" from "The Levee" (iTunes) -- Slow hand blues in the Memphis style. Quality.

"Westside from "The Levee" -- This new generation of a more modern version of blues is cool, because now we know that the whole genre has a life beyond the older artists who are now, sadly, passing on.

"Porter" from "The Levee" -- Check this dude out. Get it?

https://web.archive.org/web/20111122192000/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7084388
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 5:29 am

Feeling Minnesota over Vikings rumors

October 19, 2011

Los Angeles and the power brokers who have interests within and around its city borders have been talking for years about how they would eventually build a state-of-the-art stadium and bring back an NFL team. Heck, HBO's "Entourage" even had a plot line that centered on these happenings.

But it does appear now that the hope-filled fiction of the NFL coming to the City of Angels has taken one big step toward reality with the clearance of two possible sites for a real-deal NFL venue.

I was in L.A. last week and, as such, spent much of my time in a car, which is where I listen to all my sports talk radio noise. And the "talk" of the L.A. sports "town" was the "fact" that the team that would fill this new stadium in Southern California would be none other than the Minnesota Vikings.

I have made my view on these things clear whilst writing for ESPN; I do not like the fact that beloved teams from certain cities are getting sold down the river to other ownership groups whose interests lie in taking that team away. Take Sacramento. Or Winnipeg getting its hockey team back (at Atlanta's expense). Or my Seattle SuperSonics being stolen by Clay Bennett. Hell, Minneapolis already lost one NBA franchise to Los Angeles years ago and a hockey franchise to Dallas. It even came somewhat close to losing the Twins a few years back.

I mean, you know if the Vikings went to L.A., Minneapolis would one day vie to get some other team from somewhere else, right? It doesn't make sense. We've got to find a way to keep teams in their hometowns.

As it turned out, I had to make a business trip to Minneapolis this past weekend and decided to find out what your basic Vikings fan thought of all this hoopla. If you are like me, don't the Minnesota Vikings need to stay there for the historical sake of the NFL? I can appreciate the "Purple People Eaters" and, more to the point, the fact that Minnesota has had the biggest Scandinavian populace in the United States and hence has a Norwegian "Viking" as its mascot and call to arms. The L.A. Vikings just don't do it for me for that reason alone.

And what about us fans? And these darn stadium referendums and bond issues. OK. So that's it? We have to pay more taxes if we want to keep the teams we have supported with our hearts and our wallets for all these years, or they can be bought by the highest-bidding city/ownership group that wants a franchise? That's B.S.! Just plain B.S.

It turns out, when I got to Minneapolis and actually spoke with a large handful of these Vikings fans, they didn't seem to disagree with my line of thinking. This great legion of Vikingdom is plain up in arms. The fans don't want to have to pay for a new stadium but are willing to do it. After all the tickets and parking and jerseys and concessions they all have purchased over the years, they are still willing to pay even more, just to keep their team. The Vikings are, after all, a part of these Minnesotans' past and present, and hopefully their future.

So, back on my stump. If we fans of sports are doing all this buying of seats and stuff, and paying the tax to build newer and newer stadiums, ballparks and arenas, shouldn't we have some say when it comes to matters of our teams? Instead of just feeling like used-up workers in the world's oldest profession?

Here is what I propose:

If the ownership needs taxpayer support for a new stadium, we the season-ticket holders get a 51 percent vote in matters that ever have to do with moving the team. Like a majority shareholder in a private company. If we have to help pay for the cost of doing business, treat us as trusted executives.

Or (and I am just spit-balling):

Show us -- if your argument is that pro sports bring revenue to a region -- that this revenue plainly and exceedingly does the greater utilitarian-esque good. If I spend $5 to make $6, I'd be much more comfortable with an extra tax for a stadium or arena. But the logic has to be irrefutable.

In the end, though, I am afraid we fans will always be left to hold the bag for these rich owner blowhard-types. We will go on loving our teams, and probably paying higher taxes whilst losing those teams to the highest out-of-town bidder.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

I was honored last year to have been asked to write some songs with the great Jane's Addiction. Perry Farrell, Dave Navarro and Stephen Perkins became even better friends to me in the process, and I even got to play a few gigs with these fine gentlemen and vicious musicians.

They have a brand-new record out this week, "The Great Escape Artist" (iTunes | Amazon). May I suggest you all pick yourselves up a copy.

"Ultimate Reason" from "TGEA" -- Soundscaping at its best. Great lyrics, sung with angst and venom and beauty.

"Broken People" from "TGEA" -- Old-school Velvet Underground meets the sheen of a modern-rock classic.

"Words Right Out Of My Mouth" from "TGEA" -- Reckless punk-rock abandon.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111116171015/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7084625
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 6:51 am

Nothing left to lose in fantasy football

October 26, 2011

This is my third year playing in ESPN.com's Alice In Chains & Friends Fantasy Football Charity League. I am by no way a "stats guy," and thus, my first year was so-so and I only half-heartedly played. I hoped to luck into a win from time to time.

By year two, Jerry Cantrell, lead guitar player of Alice in Chains and league watchdog, pretty much demanded that I get my "head in the game over here" and learn a thing or two about how to draft, and to "play my own guys, dammit." (My nephew -- a 14-year-old at the time -- was pretty much playing my team for me. Hey, I had a better chance of winning with the young Andrew McKagan at the helm.)

I ended up in Jerry's living room for that second-year draft, and actually learned a ton, had a great draft, had fun and learned just how to "play my own guys, dammit." I came pretty darn close to winning it all last year, too.

By the time this season's draft came along, I was fairly confident. And when newcomer Sean Kinney's "Team Nosering" drafted a kicker in the second round, I felt confident that I was rising in the ranks, would be a sage old-schooler in our league and really start to dominate things around here with my draft choices.

I lost the first game of the season, and had the same result the next week. When I lost again in Week 3, I started to think of which players I could trade for other players. No one of seeming relevance was available. Week 5, I was 0-for-5. By Week 6, yep … still winless.

A fantasy football guru from a famous sports-radio show then suggested that I just trade my whole team. "What have you got to lose?" he said to me. He was absolutely right, and I put my whole team on the block.

Suddenly, I had Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow as my starting guy (instead of Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger), and traded Pittsburgh Steelers running back Rashard Mendenhall for Dallas Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray. In real life, of course, these would be highly suspect moves to make.

As I usually do, I wrote this ESPN column on a Sunday night. And as of this writing, my "Team McKagan" is in a fairly commanding lead. The guy's team that I am playing does have Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice playing on Monday night, but, hopefully for me, Rice won't single-handedly score 24 fantasy points. No. It's looking pretty good for ol' McKagan right now. (Editor's note: Team McKagan hung on for a 105-87 victory over AIC singer William DuVall's Team DuVall.)

I guess it goes to show that in fantasy football you could very well be that chimpanzee picking stocks for your financial portfolio … and still come out ahead. You just never know, eh?

So when it comes down to it I am a very competitve, Type A guy. I want to succeed in all that I do: work, family/fatherhood, athletics, friendships and health. And I will do the work ahead of time to reach satisfying plains within reality.

I'm also very "Seattle" when it comes down to old and new sports villians and rivals.

With all of that being said, fantasy football must be somewhere else in my minds-eye because I have no problem picking up a Denver Bronco as "my" quarterback (despite the Broncos being a former, bitter AFC West rival of the Seahawks). It also didn't ruin my day when I went 0-6 (if the same happened with the Mariners, Seahawks or Huskies, my wife would take our girls to her mom's house for "the weekend").

And speaking of bad teams; how about them Seattle Seahawks? Wow. Not to mention our adversaries, the Cleveland Browns. What an awful NFL showing by both teams last weekend. Just awful. What now, Seattle? What now? …

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

When my teams lose, sometimes the best thing to do is to listen to some good old in-your-face punk rock. None are better at making me wanna break some stuff than Fear, Black Flag and D.O.A. Check them out.

Fear: "Let's Have A War" from "The Record" (iTunes | Amazon) -- If you don't want to drive faster or scream louder after listening to this jam you'd better check your pulse for signs of life.

Black Flag: "My War" from "My War" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Henry Rollins became the voice for rebellion and angst with this one single two-minute epic.

D.O.A.: "The Prisoner" from "Something Better Change" (iTunes | Amazon) -- "Kick somebody in the face." … Yeah, I get it.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111030013351/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7144634
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 6:53 am

Tales of a football fan in transit

November 2, 2011

This season, it has been my predicament that I have had to fly on Sundays since September. Hence, I have had to catch what parts of NFL games I could in some God-forsaken airport or another.

I don't drink alcohol. But that is a whole other story. In airports though, finding a place to catch a part of a game requires sidling up to a bar (in places with names such as "Torchy's" or "Connections" or "Flight Relay"). People seem to like to get their hammer on when flying, and lips get a bit looser, and conversation comes a lot easier than if you were in some other non-alcoholic situation. That's cool with me. … I like to talk to my fellows and see what makes them tick.

These bars in airports are naturally places for fans of myriad different teams to gather. You know, we are all from someplace with our team, in the middle of either going home, or going farther away from our cities and our teams.

There never seems to be animosity between fans here either. Everyone is polite, for whatever social-phenomena reason that is. Hell, I've seen New York Jets and New England Patriots fans hanging and watching a game together (note to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and marketing whizzes for the other 31 teams: A lot more women are suddenly in these bars these days, watching the Patriots and Tom Brady. Women who don't seem to be from anywhere near Boston or the great Northeast at all).

I caught most of the morning games at home before I left for the airport. I have the DirecTV package, and saw that great drive by the New York Giants at the end of the second quarter that seemed to present the Miami Dolphins with enough discouragement to take the wind out of them. I saw the almighty New Orleans Saints and Drew Brees fall to the lowly St. Louis Rams.

I was still at home when the afternoon games started. For the first time in my life, I wasn't really even interested enough to go to the Seahawks game first (something I have always done). Again, that is a subject for another column, some other day. No, I wanted to see what the Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers were doing. Heck, I was more interested in the San Francisco 49ers-Cleveland Browns game!

I got to LAX, checked in, went through security, and made my way directly to "Red-Eyes" (or whatever the name of the bar is in the International Terminal). There they were: my people. Hammered. Partying. Wearing different team jerseys and all. There were ladies there for Tom Brady, sitting with those two dudes wearing Steelers jerseys (there are always "those two dudes wearing Steelers jerseys"). There was no bitter discussion. Rather, it was all polite, and that sort of "Hey, that was a really nice play by your team" sort of banter.

It's amazing to watch people's behavior when that "mob rule" mentality gets taken out of the equation. Does that make sense? I mean, those two thugs who beat up the San Francisco Giants fan on Opening Day in the Dodger Stadium parking lot would probably be meek and quiet at an airport bar.

Mob rule dictates that people in a group will do and act on things (usually more dire things) differently than they'd ever do on their own. Travelers go to airports with far-off destinations in mind to connect with other places and people, so fortunately they act more civil with one another. But some sports fans make a stadium their destination for the purpose of causing havoc and increasing divisiveness with their fellow fans who happen to cheer for a different team.

I found myself -- because Ben Roethlisberger was my starting fantasy football quarterback last week -- rooting for the Steelers. Yes, I said it, the hated Steelers. … What else have I got? The damn Seattle Seahawks. Not this season.

Tally ho. I'm off to England. Next week? I'll be writing about the drama and intrigue of the Irish Curling League. My grandfather's hometown team, Cork, will be "throwing brooms" with Limerick.

I also would be remiss not to congratulate the St. Louis Cardinals for showing the rest of us what guts and perseverance look like. Game 6 and 7 of their World Series triumph over the Texas Rangers were a clinic in man-dom.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

The Damned are touring the United States right now. They have inspired many musicians since their inception in the London punk scene of 1977:

"New Rose" from "Damned Damned Damned" (iTunes | Amazon) -- one of the first manic punk rock songs, with a real lead guitar shredding over the top. Drummer Rat Scabies takes things to another level on this song.

"Neat, Neat, Neat" from "Damned Damned Damned" -- take a turn to something even more manic and insane.

"Smash It Up" from "Machine Gun Etiquette" (iTunes | Amazon) -- They found majesty on this record and in this song.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111106013537/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7175067
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 6:56 am

Search for gym works out at Oxford

November 9, 2011

I'm currently on a nine-day British Isles tour, with my rock band Loaded. Needless to say, I'm not at home curled-up all comfy-like, watching college football and NFL games over the weekend.

Modern tour buses these days do have satellite Internet service installed in them. But like satellite radio in your car, every time you go under a tree, or come into the least shadow of a tall building or bridge … your reception just goes to the dogs. Also, there is an eight-hour time difference between here and there.

With that being said, you can understand it if I state that "I shan't be writing on the game of football this week."

One sporty thing I can do every day out here on tour is to work out. This healthy hobby of mine has given me a pretty spectacular dual view of some of our cities and countries all around the world.

Even if it is just simply jogging on one particular day for a workout, what better mode of travel does a tourist have other than running through cities such as London, Brussels, Osaka or even Boise. You get to discover sights, people, activities and whatever else on your own terms, and often by surprise (as in … "Wow, I'm at Buckingham Palace!").

Whether it's health clubs, hotel gyms, rowing clubs, or dojos -- I've been able to shed sweat onto some pretty exotic floors.

Last Saturday, I was in Oxford, England, to play a gig. Remember, in the middle of a nine-in-a-row, it is not so easy to "advance" where you are going to be working out ahead of time. You just sort of wing it.

I woke up on my tour bus, made some coffee, packed my gym-bag, and wandered onto the street straight off the bus. Left standing there and kind of scratching my head, I suddenly spotted a guy who looked like he might have just come from a gym.

Me, being the social guy that I am, just simply stopped him and asked if he knew where a gym was within walking distance. "Sure mate," he said. "Just go down the road, take a left for a bit, then take a right, cross that road, and you will see a gate. There is a nice gym in there where all of the students work out at."

I must have just been concentrating too hard on this dude's directions, as I didn't want to get lost. I took the left, and the right, crossed that road, and … then … BAM! There it was, Oxford University's "Oxford Sports Centre." Ah yes, the bloke on the street did say something about "students," didn't he, I thought to myself.

There is no way that they would let me into this place. There, on a huge blue plaque, was the inscription commemorating Roger Bannister for being the first to break the four-minute mile (the very track was right there, to my right). I mean, this is Oxford for crying out loud! They don't let stragglers like me just wander in now to run in Sir Roger Bannister's footsteps. Or do they?

I meekly sort of walked up to the reception there at the "Sports Centre," and without much scrutiny at all, they simply said "That'll be 5 pounds 40." Yes! For about $9, I was in! Pretty cool.

And there they were. The athletes from the Oxford rowing club, and the Oxford karate team, and the Oxford badminton team, and rugby team, and football club. All at this huge facility, that let a long-haired and tattooed guy like me just sort of waltz in.

And I kept thinking that I was seeing a 1980s version of Rob Lowe out of the corner of my eye.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Being in England always jogs my musical memory a bit. Do any of you remember just how good Badfinger was? Put it this way: Badfinger was the first band that The Beatles signed to their own Apple Records label. So, yeah, Badfinger impressed the best of the best, and for good reason.

Most of the guys in this band have passed on … and rather tragically in their youth. Fascinating story, really.

"Come And Get It" from "Magic Christian Music" (iTunes | Amazon) -- The truest sense of great rock songwriting (Paul McCartney wrote this one, after all). Great hook. Great lyrics. As well as instrumentation and vocals.

"Day After Day" from "Straight Up" (iTunes | Amazon) This is a song that you have heard a million times, and always probably wondered who did it.

"Baby Blue" from "Straight Up" -- Every song these guys wrote was a radio hit. But you can tell, that these guys wrote songs for themselves first, and the fact that they were "hit" songs, just spoke to the fact of what a common chord they struck throughout the rest of the world out there.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111112010024/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7206545
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 7:00 am

Surprising Seattle boost in S. America

November 16, 2011

I write to you this fine Sunday from a plane that is en route from Santiago, Chile, to Sao Paulo, Brazil. I'm down here with Loaded playing a few big rock festivals -- as, of course, spring is giving way to summer in the southern hemisphere.

On this very plane, we have pretty much all of the bands that played last night: Megadeth, Alice In Chains, Faith No More and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. The band Down also played, but inexplicably they are all on a different flight that has a layover in Buenos Aires.

Maybe it is because lead singer Phil Anselmo knows there is a sports bar at the Buenos Aires airport that will have on his beloved New Orleans Saints? Anselmo would indeed go that far out of his way to find a place to catch that game (he grumbled something about an NFC South rivalry with the Atlanta Falcons).

I don't care, and I personally can't find myself getting excited about the NFL. My woeful, dang Seattle Seahawks haven't given me much to go on here; and that is saying a lot. I've stuck with them every year since that franchise began, and now only feel myself being jealous when our drummer sneaks off to some Irish pub in Santiago, all excited to see his Oakland Raiders play the San Diego Chargers.

I didn't even know who the Hawks were playing this week. Yes, yes … I could look it up on the Internet, but the one extra "click" that I'd have to make just seems like a bad idea. What, do I really want to see who is gonna shut down our running-game-only team this week? Simple answer is … no.

This mood is a perfect example of just how far off the mental tracks that a bad football or baseball season can pull me askew. I mean, crap! I'm out here playing dang, big, old rock shows all over the planet, and I still can't get clear of my fandom.

Last night, there were something like 50,000 Chilean rock fans at this Maquinaria Rock Festival that we all played. Even with all of that crazy South American rock energy at this huge outside horse racing track that we played at, I could tell there a little less "oomph" in their rock fandom. You see, Uruguay had just beaten Chile in soccer earlier that day, and it was like there was something not too far from actual mourning going on at that venue we played. I guess it is kind of like what I am going through with my quarterback-challenged Seahawks.

And after that dismal Seattle Mariners season and the Washington Huskies just getting spanked by USC … I'm like a man without a country. A fan without a team with at least a chance to win something.

And just as everything seemed right at its most dire, I arrive at my hotel and connect to the Internet. I first check on my Alice in Chains charity league fantasy team to see that I am somehow going to win another week. After starting 0-5, I am suddenly 4-6.

OK. Now it was time to check the NFL scores and, I thought, time to face the awful score I was sure to see. I mean, heck … the Seahawks were playing the (then-) AFC North-leading Baltimore Ravens, and we were sure to be getting our behinds handed to us.

But, no. Somehow, and some way … running back Marshawn Lynch found his way around and through Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis and his crew of defensive bruisers. Seahawks win. Seahawks win! The drudgery and hustle of this tour somehow all seemed less overwhelming as I basked alone in my hotel room.

But Phil Anselmo may have another take, and perhaps I can even latch on to his spirit for the Saints for the remainder of the season. Or maybe, I can latch onto the Tennessee Titans? I mean, they do have Matt Hasselbeck and Jake Locker (two very "Seattle" guys).

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Down: "Bury Me In Smoke" from "Nola" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Maybe one of the most epic live songs ever. It is no wonder that the fierce Down choose to end their live set with this damn fine rock song. I love this band.

Faith No More: "Easy" from "Angel Dust" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Yes, yes. I know it's a cover song and all, but FNM's live version of this R&B; classic is not ever to be missed! On a side note … I witnessed FNM cover Peaches & Herb's "Reunited" a couple of years ago when they got the band back together. A priceless moment.

Alice in Chains: "Would" from "Dirt" (iTunes | Amazon) -- I just saw 50,000 Chileans lose their minds to this song the other night. You couldn't even hear the band, the crowd was just that loud.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111216180821/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7236866
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 7:05 am

Rock -- and world sports -- in Rio

November 23, 2011

I write this week's column from somewhere 30-something-odd thousand feet above the Atlantic Ocean, flying en route from Cordoba, Argentina, to Berlin. My band, Loaded, has been on a most grueling 16-cities-in-20-days onslaught that has taken us from the United Kingdom and Ireland all the way down to Chile, Brazil and Argentina.

This last leg of the tour in Germany is something I have been looking forward to for some time now: that is, playing six shows over there with the almighty Motorhead. Every show is sold out … and that is something a "lifer" musician like me still looks forward to immensely. These kinds of things -- playing with Motorhead -- are what this is all about, ladies and gentlemen.

OK. Now that I have checked in with you all, I would like to illuminate you all to a story I ran across last week in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil … and it does relate in a large way to sports.

Whether you are the pure U.S.-centric sports fan like myself or hold a more worldly view in your involvement as a fan, I think we can all agree that when the World Cup comes up every four years, we all pay much more attention to soccer. If your interest isn't piqued much by the sport, then surely some simple national pride or curiosity regarding the inane and/or bizarre news and events that take place at such a large event will grab your attention -- for instance, just how did one country add so many prostitutes when the 2006 World Cup was in Germany?

The next World Cup (2014) will take place in Brazil, and the larger cities of Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro have the bigger stadiums and, hence, more of the world's stage coming up.

On a personal note: Back in September 1984, I moved from Seattle to Los Angeles. The date is important only in that the Summer Olympics had just been there, and all the efforts to clean up the filth and crime of that city for the Games stopped being profitable to the city once those sports-tourists left. Many of the cops left, too, and when I got to Hollywood, it was once again a hotbed for unchecked vice, crime and gangs. It was all fine with me because, hell, I was only 19 years old and was up for the adventure of it all.

For those familiar at all with Rio, you may also know about the lawless and huge slum that oozes down the side of a steep hillside, stopping not far from the sugar-fine sandy beaches. It is called the Rocinha, and is famously run by "self-governing" drug cartels.

Rio itself will also be host for the 2016 Summer Olympics, and with all of this lucrative tourist dough coming down the pike to a country such as Brazil, which is one of the fastest-growing and pragmatic economies in the world right now, it seemed time for the powers that be to try to pull a "1984 Summer Olympic cleanup" type of thing.

To be more succinct, I found this little Reuters blurb in the local newspaper:

"Elite police units backed by armored military vehicles and helicopters invaded Rio's largest slum before dawn Sunday, the most ambitious operation yet in an offensive that seeks to bring security to a seaside city long known for violence.

"The action in Rocinha is part of a policing campaign to drive heavily armed drug gangs out of the city's slums, where the traffickers have ruled for decades.

"Authorities vow to continue the crackdown and stabilize Rio's security before it hosts the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics. Officials are counting on those events to signal Brazil's arrival as a global economic, political and cultural power."


If history repeats itself at all, though, we probably will see a safe and pristine Rio for a couple of years. But if you are a 19-year-old rock kid in 2017, looking for a dark and edgy place in which to start a band, may I suggest Rio de Janeiro. I'm sure many of the cops will be gone by then, and it will once again be electric there for sure!

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Motorhead: This is not the type of band that I even dare try to pick some tidy little tracks for you to download. NO. Go buy these records on vinyl and crank it. Break stuff. But if I must suggest a "starter" Motorhead record, then I would of course steer one toward …

"Ace Of Spades" (iTunes, Amazon and any store that calls itself a record or CD store)

https://web.archive.org/web/20111126005320/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7270442
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 7:07 am

Called up to 'The Show' with Motorhead

November 30, 2011

This week, I was going to try to answer a few of the questions you have all sent into my "mailbag" here at ESPN. But, I have been overwhelmed this week with the sheer power of the mighty Motorhead and thought I'd share a bit of what that is like.

Oh, and to those of you who might blubber on about Motorhead not being sports-related, and "why am I reading about a rock band on ESPN?" I shall pre-empt all of that garbage with a simple suggestion: Go read some other dude's column this week. Period.

Yes, I am still on the road with my band, Loaded. This tour will, in the end, see me land in no fewer than five continents in a scant 30 days. To say that my bandmates and I are exhausted would be a laughable understatement. My kids, I hear, have begun to point at a picture on the wall back at home and say "That's my dad." I'm not a real physical personage anymore to them. My wife refers to me as "what's his name?" My clothes are filthy. My hands and vocal cords are ripped and torn. My eyes are so bloodshot that I don't even need rose-colored glasses anymore … I simply must just assume that life is just grand outside of my peripheral and double-vision'd view …

But, all of that is rather beside the point.

We are ending up this tour run, with seven sold-out shows in Germany, opening for Motorhead. If you are a rock band of Loaded's size and ilk, playing Germany with Motorhead is like making it to The Show when you get called up to the major leagues in baseball. We have been "called up," and even my wife and daughters from afar revere the great Lemmy, Phil Campbell and Mikkey Dee.

This past 10 days away from home have been the hardest, but playing with Motorhead makes things OK. We would have said "no" to any other offer and simply gone home after South America.

Motorhead came to be sometime around 1979. With a perfect mix of all the good parts of punk and heavy metal, Motorhead forged the way as leaders to all of the rest of us who would shortly form bands.

From Metallica to Megadeth to Alice In Chains, Soundgarden, Guns N' Roses, and on and on … they all have noted Motorhead as a key influence.

And it's not just the music of Motorhead that sets them apart from all of the rest of us. Lemmy's no-B.S. attitude toward touring and making records, and his relentless touring stamina, make everyone else rather pale and weak in comparison. He is like the Brett Favre of rock 'n' roll … well, except Lemmy Kilmister is still playing and doesn't cry.

Through all of the fads and assorted "press darling" bands and artists over the past 30 or so years, Motorhead just simply pinned their ears back and did what they wanted. They could never be bothered with trying to fit in. And their consistency remains a sort of explosive touchstone for all of us who need to be reminded of what is real and true and honest about rock music.

Actually being here on the road with Motorhead is to get an awe-inspiring peek into legend. Motorhead guitarist Campbell has never been better. Dee plays drums like a beast possessed. And Lemmy is still more on top of his game than five 20-year-olds combined.

If you get a chance to see this band, just don't even try to think twice about it. They are the very best of what it is all about … it is like going to rock 'n' roll church.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Graveyard: "Satan's Finest" from "Graveyard" (iTunes | Amazon) -- This fine '70s-tinged rock band from Gothenburg, Sweden, just may be our brightest hope of what is to come in rock music.

Black Sabbath: "N.I.B." from "Black Sabbath" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Word is, that the mighty Sabbath shall be on the road again this summer. All original. All good!

Motorhead: "Killed By Death" from "No Remorse" (iTunes | Amazon) -- One of the all-time MH classics. There is nothing better than to hear the almighty Lemmy rip into the opening bass line of this song … live. His bass tone is comparable to a 747 taking off. Pure shred.

https://web.archive.org/web/20120113011641/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7290844
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 7:17 am

Boxing hype still pulls me in

December 7, 2011

Just back from a month away from the good 'ol USA and, starving for American sports news, I ravenously digested ESPN and ESPN2 for the most part of Friday morning through just after noon.

As a result, I found that the rematch of Cotto-Margarito fight from some three years ago would be on HBO pay-per-view the following night. As a fight fan, I know that HBO, of course, does those "24/7" exposes of the two fighters, their training camps, and the "angle" that may or may not be there. (Another result of me back home watching ESPN was that I found out that UCLA was playing Oregon for the Pac-12 championship that night. I thought I had read the ticker wrong. UCLA? At 6-7? Oh, that's right, USC is on probation. This North and South Division thing: Dumb.)

The "angle" that was making this fight interesting for most seemed to be that it might have been possible Antonio Margarito had used plaster in his hand-wraps before his late-round annihilation and bludgeoning of Miguel Cotto in that last fight. The suspicion was brought about when plaster was apparently found just before a fight Margarito had with Shane Mosley after the Cotto massacre.

HBO took the viewer along, as they painted a plainly black and white picture; Good (Cotto) vs. Evil (Margarito) was the story HBO has to tell, and they played it to the hilt. Hey! This stuff sells. I took the bait.

It is interesting stuff for sure, and I found myself engrossed in the back-to-back episodes of "24/7" that I watched on Friday night. I ordered the fight the next morning, still a bit buzzed from the "hype of the plaster" from the night before.

Boxing, as of late, has slowly but surely begun to feel the sting of the fleeing diaspora of young would-be fight talent over to the world of mixed martial arts.

MMA just holds a greater luster these days to those young kids who would have otherwise gone to YMCA or Boy's and Girl's Club youth boxing gyms. Those kids are now simply learning to wrestle and learn submit holds, armbars, etc. MMA has flash and youth on its side. Boxing has failed to bring in a new, young, hip audience for the most part.

This all leaves HBO kind of holding a bag that they must control and make interesting.

My little "discussion," here and now, is in no way meant to favor either boxing over MMA. Judging from the last time I wrote about boxing, this seems to be a favorite topic for some of you to go against each other. They are two very different sports, if you ask me. It's like arguing soccer vs. football. It's a dumb argument.

Back to the matter at hand: the actual Cotto-Margarito fight on Saturday.

If you needed any further proof of the dwindling talent level in boxing, one had to look no further than these three undercards to be convinced. Besides maybe Brandon Rios, there was not one elegant practitioner of the "sweet science" of boxing. It even seemed tedious to HBO-PPV announcers Max Kellerman and Emanuel Steward.

As the main event started, it was evident from the start that Cotto was by far the dominant fighter that night. But the question still remained, would Margarito outlast Cotto's stamina into the later rounds and pay his retributions? No. And even though the HBO-PPV announcing team did its very best to instill doubt about the skill of Cotto, in the end it was just a lopsided affair. You wouldn't have known that if you had only listened to the broadcast.

And yes … yes, I know that in the early 1970s, when the boxing audience had last waned like it seemingly has now, we had two champions of their crafts who fairly conspired to conjure interest. But when Muhammad Ali and announcer Howard Cosell did their stage-play, writ large, there were game opponents in Joe Frazier and George Foreman, and there was no MMA draining the talent pool.

So, I am all for HBO trying to drum up interest and all, but the pickings are getting slim, fellas.

Unless, of course, Mayweather vs. Pacquiao ever happens.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

I had the great pleasure of sitting next to punk legend Rat Scabies at a U.K. awards ceremony a few weeks ago in London. If you are a guy around my age, then perhaps you were as influenced as I was by the great music of punk pioneers The Damned. Mr. Scabies, of course, was their reckless drummer. A gentleman for sure, and I found Rat to be in a class all to himself. Genuinely funny, and the real deal.

"New Rose" off "Damned, Damned, Damned" (iTunes | Amazon) -- I've always liked this song so much that I even got my GNR bandmates to cover this song back when we did "The Spaghetti Incident."

"Fan Club" off "Damned, Damned, Damned" -- This song still seems vibrant and current. The whole record does, for that matter.

"Love Song" off "Machine Gun Etiquette" (iTunes | Amazon) -- One of the better rock songs ever recorded, in my humble opinion. The Damned knew who they were by the time they recorded "MGE" and really laid into this whole record, performance-wise.

https://web.archive.org/web/20120112190639/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7319603
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 7:23 am

Cool confidence under spotlight's glare

December 14, 2011

Have you ever been in a stressful group situation? A team deadline at work? Witnessed a school-yard fight?

We have all probably, at one time in our lives, been privy to seeing that one guy who seems to take those stressful situations in stride. He is the guy who performs well at work when everyone else is freaking out. He is the one guy in the "group" who remains calm and sees the right way through. He is the guy who wins the school-yard fight.

The myth of "the big guy upstairs" being on Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow's side will undoubtedly grow even larger than it is now. It seems to be the biggest topic on sports talk radio these past couple of weeks.

And what about New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning? His sense of calm during all of his fourth-quarter, come-from-behind wins this season should not be overlooked. Watching the Giants' and Broncos' wins last weekend made for one of the best NFL Sundays in recent memory.

Sunday may have also proved that the Chicago Bears and Dallas Cowboys are in real tailspins. It is all well and fine to be playing a game against supposed "QBs of destiny," but when you are in the NFL and are up 10 to 12 points in the second half of the fourth quarter -- your team should just flat-out win. No?

But if your team is already on shaky ground, an opposing quarterback with some poise and calm and back-story (such is the case with Tebow this season) can and will shake you even when you are up in the fourth.

It's kind of like when you play one-on-one basketball with that guy who has no razzle or dazzle, but he has that sense of calm that just sort of throws you off. Even when you go up 9-2 in a 10-point game, you have an uneasy feeling of dread when this guy starts to come back. By the time it is 9-8, that sense that you are "crushing" this guy is just gone, and you now know you are going to lose by the requisite two points. This loss has just as much to do with you and your sense of panic and lack of confidence as it does with your opponent's cool head and hands.

Like Lemmy Kilmister or Jerry Cantrell or even Keith Richards, these are guys that -- even when the crap seems to be getting thick -- exude a "cool under pressure" that the rest of us only wish we had.

Not much has been made nationally of Eli Manning this season, and yet it is out of the main spotlight that a calm confidence like his shines the brightest.

But much has been made of Tim Tebow. At first, of course, it was all about being on the naysayers' bandwagon. But now it seems everyone is changing their story in Tebow's favor. He knows how to win, and it is a guy who knows how to win who will take down a team of Chicago's ilk and possessing the Bears' sense of dread.

I would say that the Broncos as a team are feeding not off Tim Tebow's sense of faith, but rather off his sense of confidence in himself and his team. That shared sense of confidence can indeed make for a dangerous team in the postseason.

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

Thank you all for the nice emails, calls, comments, etc. regarding Guns N' Roses' induction into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. What an honor, to be sure.

Here are a few of the songs that were my personal favorites to play live:

It's So Easy from "Appetite For Destruction" (iTunes | Amazon) -- When we used this song as the opener for our live sets, it definitely set a tone and drew a line in the sand.

Mr. Brownstone "Appetite For Destruction" -- Rarely does an opening drum beat cause as much of a ruckus as this Steven Adler-divined gem. Killer song. Genius lyrics.

"Pretty Tied Up" from "Use Your Illusion II" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Izzy Stradlin was for sure, one of the best rock and roll story tellers ever. I loved playing this song live even way before this record came out; crowds seemed to identify with the groove of" PTU."

https://web.archive.org/web/20120112233809/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7345347
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 7:25 am

Wishing for good will, Hawks in playoffs

December 21, 2011

In recent memory, I cannot seem to remember the fact that so many NFL teams are still in the hunt for a playoff spot this late in the season. Especially those teams with .500 records or sub-.500 records.

This NFL season has been a real "head scratcher" for sure. For instance, my own beloved Seattle Seahawks came out of the gates this year like scared fawns in a forest fire. No offense. No real quarterback to speak of. No spark.

Conversely, the Oakland Raiders came out of nowhere and seemed to have gotten their groove on early this season. Then just as it seemed that they were back, the Raiders went on a losing streak of the grandest kind.

The New York Jets? Who are they?

The New York Giants? Man, I thought they were getting on cue for the late season.

The Philadelphia Eagles still in the hunt at 6-8?

The Kansas City Chiefs suddenly believing in themselves and beating the previously unbeaten Green Bay Packers? And, Kansas City is still not mathematically out of the playoff picture? Whoa.

No one wants to have to depend on other teams losing for their particular team to get into the postseason, but that is the case in so many scenarios at this point that it doesn't seem to be a weird wish.

Santa Claus, all I want for Christmas is for my Seahawks to win out, and everyone else to lose.

Santa, our defense has been very, very good this year -- and that has been enough for them to go 5-1 in their past six games.

Santa, the big, bad NBA stole our basketball team from Seattle, and our MLB team is horrendous these days. All we want for Christmas is something positive sports-wise for our city. Can you put that somewhere under just one of our abundant supply of fir trees up here in the Northwest?

Other than all of that dumb sports-talk and joshing and wishing for more, let me just get real for a moment.

It is the holiday season.

All of you people reading right now, just take care of yourselves and maybe look out for someone else. 'Tis the season to wish well on others, and reflect on our own fortune and deeds.

Plenty of people are out there without a job to support their families.

There are those at places such as Ronald McDonald House, their kids sick in the hospital with unmentionable chances perhaps. Those families' financial resources chewed away from the fight.

Our Veterans Affairs hospitals around the country are bulging with those men and women who made huge sacrifices to serve our country. Don't let them feel forgotten.

Or maybe do something as simple as just slowing down a bit. Don't let the rush of life overwhelm you. Let that driver on the freeway merge in front of you when they have their blinker on. Try not to let the rage of the road kick your behind. Take a breath. Be cool.

One by one, we can make this world a better dang place.

Happy holidays to one and all, and thanks for reading all of my nonsense.

-- Duff

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

I had the occasion to see Prince here in the Seattle area on Monday night. It is always like going to musical church for me, seeing this guy and his band play. Epic as always!

"Little Red Corvette" from "1999" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Maybe the best-written rock song ever. Big statement? Whatever. From where I sit, it is a true statement.

"Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?" from "Prince" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Listen to this song all the way to the end. The guitar and bass solo are utterly ridiculous. Dude was only about 18 years old when he laid this stuff down.

"The Cross" from "Sign O' The Times" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Two chords and the truth. Period.

https://web.archive.org/web/20120112225058/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7374362
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Blackstar Sun Dec 26, 2021 7:32 am

Time to open the old mailbag

December 28, 2011

After writing 50 columns for ESPN in the past year, I'm changing things up this week by answering some of the many emails you've sent in to my mailbag.

Duff: I know exactly how you feel! I'm a Cleveland sports fan from Columbus, and not only get to see the Browns blow it year in and year out, but the Cavs were on the verge of winning it all and blew it! And then, as if it couldn't get worse, I got to watch the Buckeyes come oh so close two years in row, only to watch them lose it at 4 in the morning from the Persian Gulf aboard an aircraft carrier! I feel your pain, but keep the faith, Sooner or later, our teams have to win, right? Right?!
John-Ryan
Boulder, Colo.


Answer: Damn, I hope so John. Well, at least your Buckeyes were dominant for a few years there (I was lucky enough to see the first game of that undefeated 2003 season at The Horseshoe against Texas Tech). The Browns have Colt McCoy and Mike Holmgren as a GM. That program has as good a chance for an uptick as any. Cavs? Well, that is probably a different story.

Hi, Duff. Great write up. Longtime fan of you and your music and Northwest sports in general (born and raised here in Washington). Just finished your book and it was great. Glad you made it out alive Smile Nothing better than talking rock 'n' roll and football. Thanks for all you do and here's hoping the Hawks can go 10-6 … well it could happen!
Allen Reed
Puyallup, Wash.


Answer: Thanks for the props on the book, Allen. It just seems that rock 'n' roll and sports go hand in hand for whatever reason. The Seahawks have made great improvement throughout this second half of the season, but alas, 10-6 was not our lot. Here is hoping for a .500 season anyways!

I'm in the Navy down in Florida and though I'm not traveling the world at this moment I feel you on the disappointment that is Seattle. I love my Hawks, Huskies and M's and will defend them to the death, but it seems like I'm always being let down. Just wanted to say I enjoy your articles and it's good to know there are other fans out there.
Jon Borden
Jacksonville, Fla.


Answer: Well, we've got the Huskies in the Alamo Bowl against the mighty Baylor Bears. Let's get a win, eh?!

I too feel the Seahawks-Mariners pain. Been a Seahawks fan since the beginning with my mother back in Albuquerque. (Mom was a Husky.) And now it seems Seattle has hit the lowest of lows sports-wise except for the Sounders. Thank God for that, finally a Seattle team to lift us out of the doldrums! You need to get on board man!
Andy Simonson
Suquamish, Wash.


Answer: Yeah, I'm not sure how I can get my head around soccer. I went to a game this year, and totally dug the excitement that was happening down there at the Sounders game. The fans are unreal for sure. But not growing and playing soccer (I was the football/basketball/baseball guy), has probably got a lot to do with me not fully getting with "the program."

Duff: I'm a lifelong G'N'R fan. I was born a few years too late (1978) to have caught the real G'N'R band on your original tours, but grew up in the early 1990s rocking out to y'all all the time.

I recently read Slash's autobiography and currently am about 3/4 of the way through your recently released autobiography. After reading your columns now for the last year or so and your new book, I wanted to say you are an inspirational guy. I read through your highs and lows and felt really moved to tell you that although I don't know you I was definitely touched by the story you had to tell. Very uplifting. Keep rocking man!

BTW, being from Tennessee I am a Titans fan and would be honored for you to follow the Titans! I know some folks from the Seattle-Tacoma area and they call the Titans the East Seahawks, or something to that effect based on all the Washington/Seattle players we now have. Anyway, just wanted to tell you all that. Give us Titans fans another shoutout and keep in mind you and your band are always welcome down south in Memphis, Tenn!
Doug Carriker
Memphis, Tenn.


Answer: Go Titans!

Just read your book … I laughed, I cried … I want more! The only sports I have ever been interested in are The Ohio State Buckeyes football! However, I am so glad that you are putting your columns on Facebook for all your fans. I am a very new fan … only a couple months … (long story). However, being able to read your columns just may turn me into a broad-range sports fan, after all! Keep it up, Duff! Also loving Loaded, especially "Dead Skin"!
Holly Lhamon
Columbus, Ohio


Answer: Thanks, Holly. Yes, me not actually being a "sportswriter," and keeping away from stats and whatnot, has probably opened up a few people who would otherwise find sportswriting boring. But, there are plenty of people out there who, conversely, find my writing about sports just a fully unholy thing.

I know you are a great M's fan, what do you think of the impending move of the Astros to AL West now the M's will play two California teams and two Texas teams?
Kathy Johnson
Seattle


Answer: I guess the Mariners are going to further expand on their dang air miles. … No MLB team travels as much.

Duff: I travel a fair bit from California to Washington, Idaho and Montana. I always take runs wherever I am. The course along the river in Boise by the university is a good one. It wins the award for the most people saying "hello" to me as I ran. I started to think folks thought I was famous, needed encouragement, or maybe they were just that friendly.
Brian Lucas
Newport Beach, Calif.


Answer: Gym etiquette is as different as are places you go to. Running is the best way to get out and really get a grip on the particular locale you might find yourself in.

Duff, I stumbled upon your column on ESPN while looking for something else. I was surprised that you do this. I was a fan of you music back in the late '80s and early '90s and now will pick back up on your latest offerings. I too am a fan of "the skip." I love sitting at home picking up far-off signals, especially during baseball season.

On nights when I have nothing to do the next day I like to take a drive and see how many different cities I can pick up. Radio is a great (and unfortunately) dying medium that most under-30 people don't appreciate. Anyway, you have a new column fan and I'll be sure to check out your other publications columns. Keep up the great work and be well!
John McIntosh
Chicago


Answer: Hiya John. Yes. From what I understand, getting radio from far and wide (otherwise known as the "skip") is much easier in the Midwest. No mountain ranges getting in the way, as is the case out here in the West. It's a fascinating thing for people like us I guess.

I just wanted to say thank you for a great message in your book. I picked it up after being a huge fan of your music and became a fan of you the person. I struggled with addiction until I found jiu-jitsu four years ago and have not looked back. I enjoyed reading your story and how martial arts has helped you as well. Thank you, by the way, the new Loaded record is fantastic. Good rock and roll is hard to find these days.
Jason Wood
Atlanta


Answer: Keep it up, my friend.

Duff, I am fascinated by your point of view and commentary. It is always good to know that like the general public; famous rock stars should not be lumped in one category. BTW, what do you listen to when you work out?
Mark Slaughter
Dallas


Answer: I listen to some Fear or Slipknot or Refused. The hard stuff works for me in the gym.

Always a big G'N'R fan, you've always been just kind of "there" in my conscience. One of the core guys of a rock band that had one of the greatest runs of all time, I never really thought too much about Duff McKagan as an individual. Truth be told, if I had to take a guess at what type of person Duff McKagan would be, I would first think of a negative stereotype; see: Sebastian Bach. An uneducated, overly self-entitled, primadonna whose time passed two decades ago. Instead I find your stuff on ESPN, of all places, and take a look so I can laugh at the rocker trying to write. And it's good. Really even tones, insightful, and self-deprecating. In fact, you had a couple of lines in there that I'll take with me. Very impressed, dude. Thanks.
Brian McMillan
Houston


Answer: I got a case of the self-deprecations back in the '80s or early '90s. I made a bunch of money somewhere around then, and then paid others to deprecate me. It was the best of times, Brian, the best of times.

Duff, first time responder, longtime reader … I have a feeling you might mean "hurling" not "curling" when you are back in Ireland. Hurling is the lacrosse\field hockey Gaelic game. Curling I don't think is massively popular in Ireland, but I'll stand corrected if you write about Cork vs. Limerick in curling … to be sure, to be sure.
Ciaran M
Adelaide, Australia


Answer: Damn it, man … Yes, of course I meant hurling. Curling is for wieners!

*

McKagan's Playlist

The Life asked columnist Duff McKagan to give us some music recommendations. Here's what he had to say:

The question was posed to me of what music I listen to in the gym or on a run. I like the harder stuff for those times when I need to harness the pain as opposed to resisting it. Music for me, takes me to places in my head, that otherwise may lay dormant and stagnant.

Fear: "The Record" (iTunes | Amazon) -- A classic punk record that can push you to a higher plain.

Germs: " M.I.A." (iTunes | Amazon) -- This complete Germs collection used to make me question authority. Now it makes me question how many more reps I can get.

Slipknot: "Vol. 3: The Subliminal Verses" (iTunes | Amazon) -- Ah, yes. The ultimate "break stuff" record.

https://web.archive.org/web/20120112183503/http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/thelife/music/news/story?id=7390118
Blackstar
Blackstar
ADMIN

Posts : 8352
Plectra : 57970
Reputation : 94
Join date : 2018-03-17

Back to top Go down

2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column) - Page 2 Empty Re: 2011.MM.DD - ESPN - The Life (Duff's sports column)

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Page 2 of 2 Previous  1, 2

Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum