‘Moral Flattening’ and Second Chances

The tweet below rings true to me.

Sometimes public perception feels so black and white. You’re either one of the good ones or one of the bad ones.

Aziz Ansari is a recent example that struck me. In my opinion, his career shouldn’t be ruined (not saying it is) because of the ‘sexual assault’ story that came out against him. Is it questionable behavior? Maybe. It’s hard to know when it’s he-said-she-said.

But similar to the tweet, he isn’t in the realm as Weinstein, Spacey, and more recently, Nassar, etc. even though the general public seems to lump everyone together. Hence, ‘moral flattening‘, a term I like.


This is where second chances come in.

I don’t think people like Larry Nassar deserve a second chance in life. Our justice system doesn’t either, and I think everyone is okay with that.

Then we get to people like Weinstein and Spacey. These two abused their power to take advantage of others sexually for decades. I wouldn’t say this is Nassar level, but it’s pretty bad. Personally, I don’t think they deserve a second chance in their industry, but do they deserve to be in prison forever? That’s hard for me to say.

Then there are levels below this, Ansari being one. The past few months have probably been a PR nightmare, but I think he deserves a second chance (assuming he ‘lost’ his first chance at all).


Another example, non-acting / sexual assault related, is Johnny Manziel. Manziel has famously flamed out over the past few years from football phenom to arrogant party boy who blew his career with drinking and drugs.

I listened to the Pardon My Take interview with Manziel today, and when you hear him speak now, you feel for the guy. He’s not like Larry Nassar or Harvey Weinstein. Some will be quick to judge and say:

“He had every opportunity not to blow it, why should I feel bad for him?

He was thrust into the spotlight so quickly with so many people trying to take advantage of him as he rose to stardom. That’s an extremely difficult situation to handle properly as a 20 year old.

He made bad decisions and burned a lot of bridges, and he acknowledges that now, but I don’t think society should turn their back on him forever. He’s ‘paid his dues‘, and if he works his ass off to get back into football shape, I’d like to see a team take a chance on him.


What’s my point?

For the rest of our lives, we’re going to see stories come out against famous people that we’ve never met. Some will be true and heinous, some will be true and unfortunate, and some won’t be true at all.

But every case and person should be tried (in your head) differently. It’s not black and white. We can’t afford to lump everyone into two groups.

Everything is situational and everything needs context. God forbid you or someone you know goes viral for yelling at their Uber driver or freaking out over mac and cheese. These are undoubtedly bad moments and they deserve what they had coming, but most people deserve a second chance, that’s all.

Lane Johnson’s PMT Comment

Lane Johnson said this on Pardon My Take this week.

“I’d much rather have fun and win a Super Bowl than be miserable and win five Super Bowls.”

Lane Johnson doesn’t know how he’d feel if he won five Super Bowls the ‘Patriot way‘, so I don’t buy what he says, but I immediately thought of my personal equivalent.

I ran for Ursinus. Haverford was the Patriots of our conference. Running was (is) everything for them. They don’t drink, they don’t take shortcuts, and they run a shitload. They turn marginal talent into sub 15:00 5,000m runners all the time and they win every god damn conference championship.

Ursinus was a bit different. Running wasn’t the end-all-be-all for most. We drank every weekend. We tried hard, but we knew Haverford was on a different level.

I ask myself; would I have been happier if I went to Haverford (I wouldn’t have been accepted), sacrificed some of my partying, ran 14:30 in the 5k, and won conferences (that’s very optimistic)?

It’s easy for me to say NO! I had a blast in college! Sure, I didn’t run as fast as I probably could have, but I don’t think I’d trade the memories just to run faster.

But I recognize that, had I gone to Haverford, I’d look at the Ursinus team I was on and think “Man, these guys are just wasting their time and talent. Partying is overrated.”, and likely say that I wouldn’t trade my race times for a few drunken weekends.

So what’s my conclusion? Whatever you do is probably what you’re happiest doing.

I watched the first episode of Black Mirror

I listened to that cuck Gourlay (and Jamie) and watched episode one of Black Mirror just now.

Quick thoughts:

  • I thought the acting was very good.
  • I liked that it’s basically here’s what would probably happen if this ridiculous real-life scenario actually occurred, and could see endless opportunities for episodes based on that idea.
  • Initially I thought “just bang the pig, it wouldn’t be that bad“, but when he walked in and they got down to business, it sort of hit me how awful it would be. You would remember that for the rest of your life. 100% scarring.
  • The message of the Princess being released BEFORE he banged the pig, but no one knew because they were all watching, seemed a bit under sold in the actual episode. That wasn’t what stuck with me once it was done at all.

I plan on watching more. Only 6 years late. Thanks blog!

Is Black Mirror worth watching?

Black Mirror comes highly recommended from Gourlay. He explained the first episode is about some prime minister banging a pig on TV, but that the other episodes are really good.

I read a little bit of the Wiki and it actually does seem interesting. Additionally, each episode being standalone and each season being only a few episodes makes it more appealing.

But it takes a lot for me to get into a series. I’ve started-then-not-finished more than I can count. So I’m asking before I even try to get started if this show is good.

Thoughts?

No Phone Before Bed

I check my phone every night in bed:

“GOD DAMNIT SAM GET OFF THE PHONE!”

  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • Snapchat
  • Crypto prices
  • Sports scores
  • Grinder
  • Facebook

On bad nights this can take 20 minutes. I hate it. It speaks to the addictive nature of social media that both Tom and Luke have blogged about recently.

I have no reason to check other than being a slave to the phone. NOT ANYMORE. Rewiring the brain is the first step.

I wrote this post planning to poll people on how much time they spend on their phone before bed, but instead I’m just committing to NO phone before bed indefinitely.

Be BETTER than the apps.

HQ Trivia Sucks

HQ Trivia is all the rage these days and it fucking sucks. Here’s why:

The intros are AWFUL

Every intro is a way-too-long monologue filled with bullshit puns that are charming at first; But after a week you just start to hate them.


The questions are too hard

I know I know, “that’s the point of trivia“, but when compared to bar trivia where music and sports are emphasized, these suck.


There are too many players / the prize is too small

In the 1 in a million scenario that I actually do get all 12 right, splitting the $2,000 between 400 winners isn’t my idea of “fun”.

They’ve talked about increasing the prizes, but unless each winner is getting thousands, I have no interest.


The app lags

I’d say every single time I’ve played, the app has lagged significantly, sometimes resulting in missed questions.


Conclusion?

It’s a good idea and the sheeple will play, but it actually sucks and I uninstalled the app yesterday.

Have fun you H-Cucks!

Hey Gold Bond, WTF

I bought some top of the line Men’s Gold Bond recently because I have really dry skin.

My skin in the winter is like a drug addict, and Gold Bond is like crack. I love it.

But then, after it wears off, I’m even worse off than before. I just seek out more Gold Bond to make things better.

Is this genius marketing / R&D by Gold Bond? Or am I just an anomaly whose skin gets worse in the long term by using moisturizer?

Either way, I just had my fix, so I’m feeling great right now. But c’mon Gold Bond.

LASIK: One Year Later

Almost exactly a year ago I got LASIK. It cost me $2,600 and was one of the best decisions of my life.

My eyes were terrible, -7.0 and -8.0. I couldn’t function without glasses or contact.

Contacts sucked. My eyes irritated me enough to the point where I wore glasses to work most days because contacts weren’t worth the headache.

But I didn’t want to look like a nerd going out so I’d put my contacts in then. But I’d always get drunk and sleep with them in which was awful.

LASIK is such a no-brainer. Anyone who needs glasses / contacts in every day life should do this ASAP.

In 50 years every kid out of the womb will get LASIK on the spot since it’ll be cheap and obvious.

I have no scientific evidence to back that up, and in fact I’d guess that’s a terrible idea since the eyes probably aren’t developed yet.

Still, get LASIK.

More emotional in my old age?

I’ve been moved to tears (or close to it) four times in the past couple of weeks and I don’t know why.


Kathrine Switzer’s SC Feature

Switzer was the first woman to run the Boston Marathon. She wasn’t supposed to but she said DGAF and did anyway. Out of it came one of the most iconic sports / women’s rights photos. I literally cried for like the last 3 minutes of this feature.


Solinsky’s 10,000m American Record

I rewatch the last mile of this race every month or so. Every single time I almost cry when he crosses the finish line. The race, the call, the time, it’s all perfect. Favorite race of all time. Start watching at about 24:45 if you’re interested.


Patriot’s Day

Yes the Mark Wahlberg movie.

This is about the Boston Marathon bombings (apparently the Boston Marathon is my weak spot) and at the end they show the real people; the police, the terrorists, the victims, etc. and I cried.


Nick Symmonds hugging his mom after winning the 800m ’08 Olympic Trials

Wheating retired a few days ago so this video has been popping up a lot. After winning, Symmonds starts jogging down the home stretch and gives his mom a big hug. It happens at 4:40. This was a tear-jerker somehow.


So what’s going on? Is this just what happens when you get older?

My Attempt at Christmas Song Lyrics

Below are some classic Christmas songs, and I’m going to write as many lyrics as I know for each one. Shane is going to LOVE this post.

Green means I’m confident.

Red means I’m not so sure.

Let’s get started!


White Christmas

I’m dreaming of a White Christmas. I’m dreaming of snow.

Can’t even guess the rest of the lyrics.


Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer

You know Comet and Jonah and Prancer and Vixen. Donner, and Jolly, and Snowboard, and Blitzen. But do you recall, the most famous reindeer of all? 

I actually know the rest of the lyrics and am not going to type them out because it’s boring and long. Does anyone know all their names?


Frosty the Snowman

Frosty the Snowman, had a very shiny nose. And if you ever saw it. You would even saw it glows.

For the life of me I can’t think of the second line. I keep going to Rudolph but I know that’s not right.


Let it Snow

Oh the weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful, and since we’ve no place to go. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

Oh la-la no signs of it stopping, and the fire is surely popping, and since we’ve no place to go, let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

I actually like this song.


Jingle Bells

Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way. Oh what fun it is to ride in a one horse opened sleigh. HEY!

That’s the whole song, right?


Joy to the World

Joy to the world, the teacher’s dead. We bar-be-que’d his head! Then we took his body and flushed it down the potty and round and round it goes! And round and round it goes!

I remember the latter part from elementary school.


Deck the Halls

Deck the halls with crowds of jolly fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la. *second line*. Kill your neighbor and your sister fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la!

Again that latter part is from elementary school.


Have yourself a merry little Christmas

Have yourself a merry little Christmas. Have yourself a good time…? Have yourself a merry little Christmasssss Niiiiiiiiight.

What an original tune. Like c’mon, this song fucking sucks.


Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree

Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree have a happy holiday. Jingling and Singling, you and me, have a happy holiday! What a bright time, it’s the right time, to rock the holidays. Jingle bell time, it’s a swell time, to go riding in a one horsed sleight. Giddy up Giddy up, kick up some mud. Don’t forget your coat.

I know most of this from Mean Girls.


‘Twas the night before Christmas

‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house, there wasn’t a peep, not even a mouse.

I’m not sure if this is a song or a poem or what. I’m also pretty positive there’s more to it than just this.


Silent Night

Silent Night. Holy Night. All is well. All is right. Peace may come. Peace may go. Weather forecast. Is calling for snow.

I didn’t know this was a Christmas song until I looked up “Christmas songs” just now. I remember this from the Simpsons when Bart / Lisa sing as Homer breaks into the house.