Game of Thrones – My Thoughts So Far

  • The chick who shows her boobs a lot can talk to dragons. They’re either her best friends or her lovers, I still haven’t figured that out yet.
  • King Joff

    Everyone knew King Joffrey was going to die but it happened way later than expected. Personally I had no idea it was coming.

  • No one knows if John Snow is dead or alive. He also could be gay. Who knows. It’s all going to be revealed this season. Maybe he’s the one who killed Joffrey?
  • The little person was stuck in jail for a while. I think it’s the same actor who plays Mickey in Seinfeld. Patrick Dinkleman or something is his real name?
  • They cast the real life strongest man in Sweden to play the little man’s father. I don’t get why he’s capable of talking to animals though, that part never made sense to me.
  • Cheater!

    The one woman cheated on someone and had to walk through the town naked while people egged her. I thought they were going to kill her, but I’m pretty sure I saw her on the ad for this new season, so she may still be okay.

  • It was fall for a while and everyone was enjoying themselves, but now winter is coming, and it’s time to go inside.

If you can’t tell, I’m PUMPED for season 4 to start.

Upper Dublin Bagel Squad vs. The World

Today was an example of why the home-grown stores like Upper Dublin Bagel Squad struggle to keep up with the Wawa’s and Dunkin Donuts’ of the world.

The Bacon, Egg, & Cheese on an Everything Bagel: A+

10/10. I love Sizzlis, but they don’t compare. If there’s any reason to go to a non-chain, it’s for stuff like this.

Price: D

A breakfast sandwich and medium coffee is $7.50. A Wawa Sizzli and medium coffee is $4.50. That’s a dramatic difference.

This is the single biggest reason I won’t go here more than once in a blue moon.

Box of Coffee: F

It took over 10 minutes for me to get a box of coffee this morning.

When I get a box from Dunkin, it’s rapid fire. This place isn’t equipped to handle box-of-coffee orders and is another scenario where I’d choose Dunkin over them.


It’s not a matter of emotion and wanting to keep the locally owned stores in biz. It’s a matter of efficiency. More people want cheap / efficient compared to an A+ sandwich over a B sandwich.

I’ll stop in once a month when I want a treat, but for now, I’m still loyal to Wawa & Dunkin.

Reflections on Losing $18,000 in 15 Minutes

I wrote my last post 7 hours after going from $18,000 to $0 at Sugar House (for the record, only $1,500 of it was mine when I walked in, the other $16,500 was profit).

I was hungover and having a very difficult time wrapping my head around what just happened. Now that I’ve had a few days to soak it in, my thoughts have changed slightly:

I thought about not sharing this with anyone.

Having $18,000 in chips and not have the discipline to save even one dollar of it could be seen as a fault in my character. It’s judge-worthy. But what’s the point of having a personal blog if you’re NOT going to write about that?

It didn’t feel like real life when I woke up.

I felt like losing it all was a dream and that I would check my pocket and find the money. It was a very hard / depressing reality to accept.

The reason I didn’t walk away when I was up, more than anything, was because I was drunk. 

Plain and simple. This didn’t fully occur to me that morning because it was so soon after. The magnitude of how much I was up was lost on me because I was drunk. That’s why I didn’t put any of it aside or have any goal in mind.

The reason I got up to $18,000 in the first place is because I was drunk.

I bet $4,000 when I had $10,000 and DOUBLED it to $8,000 (and won). Betting 40% of your stack, then doubling it, is not a sober-person move.

I don’t think I need to evaluate my life.

I felt like I had sinned the next morning, like this was a deeply troubling issue that I had to face up to. A few days later, I don’t feel that way, and I’m not swearing off gambling.

I’ve already ‘moved on’.

I’ve told a dozen people in person and the reaction has been the same from everyone. It’s a great story and a bone-head move and I’m taking it at that.

…But if I DID walk away up $16,000…

What the actual fuck would I have done? Left with 160 $100 bills? Left with all of my chips instead? Gotten mugged somehow out of the casino? Do I report it as earned income? I’m just curious for the next time this happens.

I feel for kids these days

Here’s a video that was posted back in April where a ~11 year old kid goes HAM on the Mets. You get the point after about 10 seconds.

Kids these days are cursed with the ability to film themselves at all times. 10 – 20 year olds shouldn’t be able to film themselves out of respect for their future selves.

As a 25 year old, technology like this was just becoming accessible when I was growing up. Alex and I once recorded a voiced over Linkin Park song to include the word “Jew” like 20 times in it just to piss Ben off. I’m pretty thankful that file isn’t still available.

When the ~13 year olds of today grow up, a large percentage of them are going to have videos like this Mets kid to look back on and cringe. Whether it’s choreographed dances, singing your favorite song, rants, whatever. In 15 years he’ll probably sigh every time someone brings it up.

Some may say it’s a good thing. I for one have no interest in looking back at myself in the most awkward years of my life. I remember them well enough and would gladly choose to not relive them.

28 Weeks Later Intro – What Would You Do?

Rob and I were talking about the opening scene to the movie 28 Weeks Later which is about as intense as it gets. You’ll see the “decision” within the first 30 seconds of the clip.


The ultimate question – what would you have done if you were Don?


I don’t have a significant other, but I’ll substitute Alice with any of my siblings or parents.

Personally, I think I’m doing what Don did and running away. One comment put it best – “You can either survive alone or die together.”

The question then becomes, can you live with the guilt afterward?

I don’t know how I’d deal with it. But even if I decided to kill myself out of guilt, the end result is the same.

I don’t think there’s right and wrong, I think there’s live and die.

Bed Frame for the Sheep

After four straight years of not sleeping with a bed frame, I caved and bought a bed frame.

The higher the frame, the more of a sheeple.

People can only laugh at your mattress on the floor so many times before you break, even I’m not immune it.

But I stand by my statement, that bed frames make no sense. Does anyone stop and ask themselves WHY they have a bed frame? What is the benefit of sleeping three feet off the ground? I don’t get it.

The only one that comes to mind is storage, but my room has nothing in it as is. Maybe less spiders will crawl on me? I actually like spiders.

Forget spiders, here’s to being one of the sheep!

What do you see when you look at this image

This image available for purchase on multiple stock photo sites.

Is your first thought:

“That looks like diverse group of four hard working business people”

or

“Holy shit, that’s a Swastika”

How in the world does someone create this, show it to ANYONE, and not get the instant feedback “I like where you’re going with this…. buttttttttt it looks a lot like a Swastika.”

I hope I don’t get sued for using this image in my post. Could be the end of old Bansheemann. All credit to Getty Images? If they sue I may counter-sue based on the image being insensitive.

 

Elvis Passing is the End of an Era

Elvis was put down last Thursday.

Animals passing sucks. I think it’s due to their innocent nature. Humans know when they’re dying and what it means, so you don’t feel as bad. Animals just know they don’t feel well.

Elvis passing is a symbol. For the first time in over 20 years, my parents’ house does not have a cat in it. Elvis was the last remaining cat of an era of cats that represented my childhood. That time in all our lives, the Stortz ‘childhood’, is formally done.

Unfortunately, JC’s birthday was the next day. JC loved Elvis more than anything, probably more than me. It’s a sad reality but it’s a part of life. So while we mourn the loss of Elvis, we celebrate the time we had with him, especially JC. Happy birthday dad.

That said, I’ve ushered in a new ‘era’ with Covy. He’ll be the cat I have for the next ~10 years as I transition through this stage of my life. Then, perhaps when he passes, I’ll be entering a different part of life and get a new cat. Pets are a timeline of life.

I’m embarrassed to say I can’t even find a good picture of Elvis. RIP buddy.

PolitEcho – My Political Bubble

I don’t like harping on this topic, but since it’s something I’ve mentioned before (and something that stirred a lot of conversation), I think this post is relevant.

Someone shared a link to PolitEcho which is a Chrome plugin designed to show you how your Facebook feed is skewed (if at all) politically. It looks at all of the page-likes of all your Facebook friends, ranks how liberal / conservative they are, and plots them on a graph (you can get more specifics on their site).

Obviously this isn’t an exact representation (since some people don’t like ANY pages, like me), BUT it does show you who’s popping up most on your Newsfeed, so you can see what you’re exposed to.

Here are my results:

The cool thing about this graph is you can hover over the bubbles and it shows WHO it is and WHAT pages specifically they like. The shade of the bubble shows how confident the algorithm is that this person ranks where they should rank. It’s confident that the dark blues are liberal and dark reds (there are none on my example) are conservative.

Another graph:

 

These results are likely very similar to what my readers would see, the feed skews liberal. This isn’t surprising, but it does go to the point of the name “PolitEcho” – are you in a Facebook political echo chamber or are you being exposed to both sides?

Nothing groundbreaking here, but it’s interesting to get data on the topic.

Running Frauds

The running community has become littered with frauds and cheaters. While there are plenty more than the four I’ve listed here, these are some great examples. I don’t understand what possesses people to do things like this.

Mike Rossi

The Mike Rossi thread on Letsrun has more than 26,000 posts.

Mike Rossi went viral for writing this letter to his son’s principal when she didn’t grant his son an excused absence from school to watch him run the Boston Marathon.

Funny thing is, Mike cheated to qualify for Boston. He claims to have run 3:11:45 at the Lehigh Valley Marathon in 2014.

After piling up evidence that he cheated, Letsrun’s founders offered him $100,000 to duplicate the time within a year. A year has passed, Rossi never attempted to claim his prize but to this day denies any wrongdoing.

Boston has a finite number of entries, meaning Rossi stole a spot from someone who ran slower, but actually ran. A travesty. This happens more often than you think.

Alex Viada

Alex Viada is a trainer for “hybrid” athletes.

Viada’s claim to fame is being able to squat 700 pounds while also running a 4:15 mile, which is still quoted on a number of articles. He regularly posted GPS results of his workouts on his Facebook, including many 400m repeats in 60 seconds.

At well over 200 pounds, the Letsrun crowd wasn’t buying it. After long threads on the topic, Letsrun admins began mysteriously deleting anything that mentioned Viada. Conversely, Viada removed all mentions of running times on his personal website and Facebook profile. So it appears some mutual agreement was reached.

I give him credit that he stopped making the claims, but he had to be caught for that to happen, and never actually owned up to his lies.

The multiple false claims of running ability surely built his reputation with prospective clients though.

Robert Young

Robert Young recently attempted to “run across the USA“. Similar to Rossi, the Letsrun crowd exposed the cheater with a 10,000+ post thread on the topic.

Robert was knocking out 60-70 mile days left and right and publicizing the attempt as much as possible.

Letsrun recaps how he was caught here, but once all eyes were on him, he got “injured” and had to end his attempt.

He vehemently denied any cheating and said he was going to release the GPS data, including cadence and heart rate, to prove his innocence, but never did. When investigators went to get the data from his GPS watches, he had wiped them clean. Even his own sponsor said he cheated.

The run was to benefit charity, but there’s no telling how much was going to Young’s pocket. He’s since deleted his personal website.

This all brings us to our newest fraud – Kevin “KP” Kelly

The other stories have played out, but KP’s is at its infancy, which is why this is interesting.

On Friday, the Letsrun crowd questioned KP’s claim to have run 100 marathons in 100 days (but on the 100th day, he decided to run 100 miles just because). He also says he’s run a 3:00 marathon and a 4:20 mile.

KP is 6’7, 250 lbs, and like the other runners on our list, he has little natural talent but a lot of drive!

He runs for charity, but says that the money donated should go directly to his gofundme, which he’ll then donate to charity himself.

Unlike Robert Young, he didn’t wear a GPS watch for his feat, and has no real proof of anything, though he claims many of the marathons are being done in he low-mid 4 hour range. He hasn’t lost much weight in the 100 days that’s for sure.

To raise more eyebrows, his marathon PR comes from a race where he missed every timing mat. That, coupled with the fact that a 4:20 mile PR would likely be the world record for someone weighing 250 lbs, provides more than enough evidence to justify calling this guy a fraud.

He hasn’t come under fire yet, but he’s indulging in the publicity while it’s still focused on his amazing feat instead of the amazing fraud.

It may seem premature to call KP a fraud. Like the die-hard fans of Rossi, Viada, Young, and other frauds, people will say that guys like me are cynical and trying to tear down a good thing.

My response is they’re naive and uneducated on the subject matter – 6’7, 250 pound guy who has no proof of running ONE marathon faster than 4 hours cannot run 100 marathons in a row in the manner which he’s suggesting.

I’m excited to see how this one plays out! Follow the Letsrun thread if you’re interested!