Jeff – I Hope You Like This One!

I enjoy people who comment on my blog. I don’t know why the comment rate is low, but here and there, people contribute meaningful and worthy comments that I like reading.

Drew Mackin has upped his comment game as of late which I appreciate. He tells me what posts he likes and the specific parts. He also had well thought out comment on my boxing vs. tennis post, which was good input. Thanks Drew, and keep it up!!!

Jeff Stortz, on the other hand, has upped his comment game as well but in a different way. Here are the last five comments from Jeff:

“What the hell are you doing on this blog? Put up something interesting”

“It’s okay Sam, I’ll just imagine your face from 12th grade when I punch it extremely hard”

“You should get whatever rash is on the back of your head checked out”

“Every make any free throws in a game situation? Generally a solid, aggressive player may only get 4-10 shots at it a game. Next time you practice….run a suicide and then shoot 2-4, then do some push-ups, then shoot 2-4 unti you get to 20 and see how many you make.

It is much better practice that way…you should actually do five push ups every time you miss too…see how long you last. I have a feeling your 80% will drop to below 50″

“Sorry, I don’t mean to rain on your parade, but it appears that it is better to be boastful about things that…wellll, things that matter to any degree in life. For example, if you were making these foul shots to ultimately help win in games. That would be a start.

I might be coming off as a dick in these comments, but hey, at least I’m consistently reading the posts”

Jeff can actually be a nice commenter, after all, we are brothers. In the past, he’s offered perspective into music, thoughts about who should be able to vote and who shouldn’t, and even those last two comments offer advice for free throws, in a kind of dickheadish way.

But lately he’s been unsatisfied with my blog, so I’m going to try and make a post he’ll like.

Jeff once commented that the gif below was his favorite one, here it is again Jeff!

pidg LIGAF

 

Here’s a song that Jeff showed me recently that I like a lot, thanks for the song Jeff!

Jeff’s favorite cat is Trooper, here’s a great pic of Noops, Jeff!

Trooper

 

Speaking of favorite animals, I’d bet your favorite bearded dragon is Merg? This is the only pic I have though, sorry.

merg

Jeff’s also a fan of New Zealand AND running, who’s a bigger running New Zealand icon than John Walker?! Here’s a great pic of him winning the 1976 1500m at the Olympics in Montreal.

Walker

But in the end, family is what matters most, and what better way to finish off a post that Jeff will like than with a picture of us, the Stortz siblings (I couldn’t find a pictureof everyone so I did my best).

Stortz

But in reality, Jeff, I’m not offended by your comments, and I think you will actually find this post enjoyable (be sure to let me know via comment section).

 

Modest Mouse Concert

Last night I went to the Modest Mouse concert in Bethlehem and stayed at the Sands Hotel for the night. I took today off from work to enjoy my stay.

The Pregame

Enjoying the Show
The Three Best Friends

I met up with Gourlay and Jonny around 7:00 at a local Bethlehem bar for some drinks. Jonny’s friends from school also showed up and the six of us enjoyed a few beers before heading over to the concert area. Once we parked, we started ripping shots of Fireball which proved to be a good move. I entered the concert with a very good buzz and excited for the show.

Modest Mouse

steelstacks
The Badass Venue Steelstacks

The concert itself was great. Around 8:30 we met up with Liz, Emlamb, and a friend of theirs to watch the show with. Yuengling pints were $5 a piece which is a reasonable price and the band/crowd were into it. Modest Mouse has a lot of songs, so I didn’t know all of them, but I was rockin’ pretty hard to the ones I knew.

Post Concert

Gourlay, Jonny, Liz, Emlamb, and I walked back from the concert to the hotel room which turned out to be way longer than expected due to a wrong turn. I would say the only significant things thatGambling happened were Jonny beating me in a race to who-could-do-five-cartwheels-the-quickest, and Emlamb punching me in the face.

We got to the hotel and began drinking some rum and coke in the room. The two girls aren’t both 21 so after a bit they left while Gourlay, Jonny, and I tried our luck at the casino. Jonny and I played hold’ em while Gourlay played black jack. I was definitely a bit too drunk but ended up taking $100 to $125 in a low-action session while Jonny and Gourlay ended up in the red.

The Hangover

I woke up around 7:45 this morning and knew I was in trouble. I didn’t want to be the only one up so I tried to crawl into bed with Jonny and Gourlay but they didn’t think it was as funny as I was. I knew I couldn’t sleep so I took a 40 minute shower and just stood there miserable.

Those two eventually rose and we planned to get food with Liz and Emily. We picked them up, headed to a local place, and I sat there sipping and apple juice while the others enjoyed their meal. This hangover was not going well.

The Shopping

Isaac Freakin' Brock!
Isaac Freakin’ Brock!

I’ve been semi-jokingly tell Liz and Emlamb that I need to go shoe shopping with them because they’re girls and would know what I should buy, as footwear is a foreigner concept for me outside of sandals and running shoes. We walked around for a bit and then something crazy happened. Outta nowhere, Isaac freakin’ Brock (Modest Mouse lead singer) was walking around Bethlehem like a normal person with his girlfriend. We followed behind him for 100 feet but never found the nerve to say anything, which I regret.

Anyway, we headed to the outlets near the casino for shoes. I finally picked out new shoes, and added a new pair of sandals, for a total discounted price of $65. Without the discount, it would have been ~$285, score! After that the group as a whole insisted I need new jeans, so I bought a new pair of jeans to cap off the trip.

The End

After an eventful 20 hours, the crew went their separate ways. I drove home and arrived early enough to stop by work. Yes, I went to work at 4:30 on my day off. The trip overall was a major success. I even won money gambling, those as a whole the trip set me back a few hundo. Tomorrow should be a gentle Friday and then I’m off for Memorial Day Weekend. I have no plans.

Livin’ the Sloth Life

The past three weeks of my life have, without a doubt, contained the least amount of physical activity in any three week period over the past 9 years. Here’s what I’ve done:

  • Ran .3 miles around the block once.
  • Ran .3 miles around Ursinus looking for my clothes.
  • Scheduled 10 games of basketball.
  • star wars draw

  • Played zero games of basketball.
  • Played a bad game of Ultimate Frisbee for 10 minutes.
  • Casually tossed the Frisbee for probably 5 hours total.
  • Played three games of volley ball.
  • Played 5 hours of basketball in my driveway, just shooting around.
  • Played 100+ games of Kan Jam.
  • Ran away from a drunk asshole for 30 minutes.
  • Threw the Frisbee at the shed 50 times and jogged to get it.
  • Drank 1,000 beers.

Surprisingly, after being a total sloth for 3 weeks, I only weigh 151 pounds, which isn’t too far above my normal.

I’ll start by saying the only reason I’ve been so useless lately is because of my leg. I want to be 100% healthy for Philly and starting injury free is step 1. I expect to begin training in 2-3 weeks.

My take away from the past three weeks is this – when something becomes your routine, you don’t notice when things go according to plan. I don’t exercise regularly, and since that’s part of the plan, I don’t really notice or care. For the first week I would get antsy about not exercising. Now I don’t even notice. Do I want to be running? Of course, but by committing to this lifestyle for a month+ to heal my leg, I feel no sense of urgency or rush to comeback, and I’m enjoying being a waste of life in terms of physical activity.

In my daily life, I don’t notice being out of shape. When I ran that one block around the neighborhood, I could definitely notice. But since I don’t need to be able to do that, why do I care? I can definitely see how people get carried away in the no exercise lifestyle.

Fortunately, I’m actually pretty motivated to start running again. It’s nice to take some time off, but honestly I’d still be running voluntarily if my leg was better. But until then, I’m going to enjoy some Frisbee, shoot some free throws, drink Natty Ice four nights a week, eat a cheesesteak as my only meal on Saturday, and live the sloth life.

sloth

5/14-5/18 Update

Obviously slackin’ on my posts. Here’s what I’ve been up to.

Wednesday

I went to Ursinus for the night to celebrate their graduation. I drank a lot and had a long conversation with Rob and Emlamb while fake chain smoking cigs. I didn’t black out but managed to pee Slade’s bed. I can debate about whether I should write that on the blog or not, but call it what it is. Sorry Slade.

Thursday

I went to Ursinus for the night to celebrate their graduation. I drank a lot and went down the fountain. I was drunker this night than the previous night, but did not pee the bed. However, pranksters shaved my left leg and Drew on me.

Friday

Friday started horrendously. After going down the fountain, Tony failed to deliver my clothes back to the suite. I woke up in my short shorts at about 6:00 desperately searching for my clothes. I ran around campus for 10-15 minutes before finding them and heading home.

Friday was also Laura’s birthday. Brookes organized a little gathering at a bar in town. I went and had two beers along with a burger. I enjoyed good conversation and quality games of cricket on the dart board. I got a parking ticket which I’m going to fight and went home for an early night.

Saturday

Saturday day I went to a house gathering at a friend of a friends house which was a good time. We played drinking games and kan jam which is always fun. This continued in the night. Overall it was very relaxed but fun.

Sunday

I woke up early, did nothing, ate Randazzo’s with Gourlay, watched the Pacers Heat game with Gourlay, and am now writing this post, which sucks by the way. Hopefully one of these make you laugh.

breathalyzer

car jump fail

cat mirror

out for a ride

Under-Appreciated Bands by My Generation

I’d been thinking about this post for a week or two now, but after buying tickets to the upcoming Foreigner/Styx concert at the Susquehanna Bank Center, I’ve decided to write it now.

These aren’t necessarily bands that aren’t well known or underrated, but bands that aren’t well known and underrated by my generation. I would never hear someone put one of these bands on at a party, and I’d be surprised if more than 25% of my friends could name more than one or two songs from these bands. I don’t claim to be the #1 super-fan of any of these, but I know a bit of their music.

Supertramp

Songs You May Know: Breakfast in America
My Favorite: Goodbye Stranger

Supertramp is an English rock band from the late 60s and 70s. Breakfast in America will probably be most known to kids around my age due to the sample taken by Gym Class Heroes for the song Cupid’s Chokehold (I like that song). These guys have a number of great ones, but Goodbye Stranger is an absolute gem in my opinion.

 

Styx

Songs You May Know: Come Sail Away, Renegade
My Favorite: Too Much Time on My Hands, Grand Illusion

Styx is an American rock band from the 70s and 80s. Come Sail Away is awesome and obviously everyone knows it (with a little help from Eric Cartman). In case you were curious, the long break/pause near the end before jamming back into awesomeness is 18 beats. I always try my best to count it out and time it perfectly. It’s harder than you think. Renegade has been in a number of movies, including Billy Madison. Those two are great, but Too Much Time on My Hands and Grand Illusion are in the same league for not being as popular.

 

Dire Straits

Songs You May Know: Money For Nothing
My Favorite: Sultans of Swing

Dire Straits is an American rock band from the 70s and 80s. All I know about Dire Straits is that Mark Knopfler is a beast and probably isn’t as well known as he should be. When Wacker tells me that he knows the song Money For Nothing because his dad used to play it, it just shows me that it’s more well known that I thought. Regardless, Sultans of Swing has one of my favorite guitar solos of all time, showing how good Knopfler is. Walk of Life is recognizable as well. Listen to Romeo and Juliet if you’re feeling slower/more lovey dovey.

 

Foreigner

Songs You May Know: Feels Like the First Time, I Want to Know What Love Is
My Favorite: Any song referenced in the Foreigner Aqua Teen Episode

I didn’t know who Foreigner was before the Aqua Teen Hunger Force episode on it (one of the best episodes), but now I’m a big fan. All the songs mentioned in that episode are great: Hot Blooded, Cold as Ice, Head Games, Double Vision, Dirty White Boy, Urgent, etc. This concert is going to be AWESOME. Here’s a few gems from that Aqua Teen episode.

5/7/09 – A Letter to Myself, Five Years Later

In Mr. Ortiz’s government class my senior year of high school, we all wrote a letter to ourselves that would be sent to us five years later. Today, I received this letter in the mail, and have transcribed it exactly as it was written five years ago. You can scroll all the way down to see the actual letter.

“Dear                                           5/7/09                            Probably – Jonny

 

Sam Stortz

Well, I’m a senior now and am just realizing High School is over. I went out with a bang, I have 3 E’s, and 2A’s right now. Track Districts is coming up, hope to get to States. This track team has really been a special group of friends. Me and Mike, yea we’re pretty tight, but everyone else too. Me and Jon are really good friends now, Sorry Jon, no Pitt. Gourlay and his freakouts. Matt and his Bipolarism. Desch and Smith. Kruegz and Charlie. Everyone is really cool and I’m glad I spent the last 4 years with these guys. But maybe even more important was meeting Emily. Yea we were friends last year but out of nowhere we really hit it off this year. Obviously she was my first Kiss and all and I’ll probs never forget that night, (in case I do 3/11/09 9:15PM) HA, Yea Shut Up. Disney was fun, one last hurrah before I never see half these kids again. But back to Emily, with me not going to Pitt I wonder what will happen with us. I’m expecting a big summer and if things go well I’d be willing to stay together or something as long as we could. God knows I wouldn’t/couldn’t cheat on her even if I wanted to. Har Har, we’ll wait and see I guess. I think I’ll still be running, I’m hoping olympic trials poss? but almost Def not. But hey, if you told me as a freshman I might make States senior year I’d say you were nuts. As for my family. Tom married, Laura and Brooks married, Jeff doing something gay like always, Mom and dad still together (hopefully). Going to the U. Hope I made the right choice, but if I Choose Pitt cause of Emily I’d be mad at myself. The U I think was a good choice. Maybe my hand writing will get better too. Just started my blog also. Maybe I’ll have that who knows. Alex Ben and Jared have kind of trailed off a bit. It’s weird thinking that I could have been a cool kid, I mean I am ROWS! but still. I rarely drink and still haven’t smoked. I’m practically the most inexperienced person that I could be. But I still think I’m smarter than everyone here so, whatever. Guitar hero I still do a lot (I know my grammar sucks stfu nub gtfo BBQLULZFTW) But yeah, GH has taken up so much time but it’s fun and I like it so whatever again. I wonder if I’ll still be playing, probs not. Who Knows. Emily Says I should try new food, she just said that, try mayo… Sike Naw! I won’t. Do that. What I’m really interested to see is whether or not I’ll still be this arrogant. Tom is so I think yes, but seriously I know what I’m talking about when I talk. Prom is coming up, that should be fun if you know what I’m saying. Probs not but we’ll see. 

That’s it, I think that was pretty good. Skate or die? I dunno. BBQ.”

I’ll address things in order.

  • I ended up with a good GPA senior year, zero Es.
  • I ran 9:42 at Distrcits and didn’t make States.
  • Mike and I are still friends, but not as much so as Gourlay and I. Jonny and I are friends, but not as much so as Gourlay and Jonny.
  • Meeting Emily was a very big thing as she was my first real girlfriend. I would say we had a “big summer”, but our relationship ended two months into college. Experience has taught me that long distance relationship are very difficult to manage. Emily and I are still friends, and talked to each other today about the letters.
  • Disney sucked.
  • I’m not going to make the Olympic Trials.
  • Tom is not married, Laura and Brookes are, Jeff I’m sorry for writing that, and my parents are still together.
  • I made the right choice going to Ursinus.
  • My hand writing is still terrible.
  • My blog is as good as ever.
  • Alex, Ben, Jared, and I are still very good friends, along with Scott, Stolz, Dan, and Kurt.
  • I’m a bit more experienced now than I was then in every aspect of life, some moreso than others.
  • I still think I’m smarter than everyone.
  • I don’t play Guitar Hero very much (at all) anymore, though I’m still very good.
  • I eat mayo every day for lunch.
  • I went to Prom sober and it was awkward.
  • Skate or die.

Page 1

 

Page 2

My Almost Accident

Tonight, I almost killed someone. What happened has never quite happened to me like that before. Here goes.

I was driving to Swarthmore College to watch Chuck run the 5k in one of his last efforts to break 15 minutes. He told me the race started at 10:00PM, and I got off of 476 at about 9:55PM. It’s roughly 5 minutes to get from the exit to the track. When exiting off of 476, you turn onto Baltimore pike, pictured below.

baltimore pike

Baltimore Pike is a two lane road with a median and a speed limit of 40-45mph, I don’t know which. The part pictured above (I was on the side with all the cars) is slightly uphill and the scene of my almost-accident. Since I was cutting it close to the time of the race, I was speeding, between 55-60. I was driving in the left lane with no cars around and out of nowhere, an overweight black/latino woman with a black tank-top and purple leggings came outta-fuckin-nowhere crossing in the middle of the street (there were no street lights at this area). I saw her when she was probably 15 feet away and she wasn’t making a huge effort to get out of the road. I reacted and swerved hard to the right, harder than I’ve ever swerved before, and missed her by roughly 2-3 feet. My heart was beating about 175 BPM and my palms went into insta-sweat mode.

I almost killed this woman. The difference of a few feet is all it was. If I was texting, I probably would have killed her. I think I deserve some blame, as I was a bit over the speed limit, but why this woman was walking across a street, where there’s no light, and no cross walk, at 10:00 at night, is beyond me. She also didn’t seem to care that much that I almost killed her.

My life would be altered significantly. First, I’d probably get charged with some crime. I don’t know what (involuntary manslaughter?), but something that would be a big deal. Second, and probably worse, I’d have to deal with the fact that I killed somebody, even though it wasn’t entirely my fault. I’m not sure what coping mechanisms people use, but I think that would rattle me pretty good.

In a few days, I’ll probably forget about this and only think of it every couple of months, but had I been going a few miles per hour faster, or not paying as much attention, this could have been a life changing event.

Also, good race Chuck. He ran 15:14 and although it wasn’t sub 15, it was still solid.

 

Storied Success

When I wrote the post on Friday describing my battle with Shayna, I had a feeling it was going to be well received. I did my best to include clever lines and knew that the overall story of was funny. I threw in a relevant picture and .gif, and when I finished, I thought I had something worth reading. Because of that, I posted it on Facebook and received positive reviews. That Facebook post drew in 38 visitors, 21 of which had never been to this site before. The average read time was just under three minutes which is great.

I’ve been blogging for over five years and written more than 1,000 posts, and it JUST occurred to me that I could use this blog to tell stories (that happened more than one day ago). How is that possible?

The point is that even after five years of blogging, and more than 1,000 posts, I’m still discovering new ways to make the blog better. And it’s not just small things like adding a picture or changing the font size. The stories idea has opened up an entire stream of posts that, if written well, are going to be a significant addition to the blog.

In opposite fashion to Office Space, every day you read this blog, is the best day of this blog’s life. That doesn’t mean each post is better than the last post (this post isn’t particularly good), but that the overall trend-line for blog quality is headed upward. Now if I could only figure out how to do that in real life.

Improving

Wrong Side of History

The Obvious Ones

Slavery

Anyone arguing for slavery in the mid 1800s was not doing so because they thought slavery was right, they were doing so because it made their life incredibly easy. Free labor? Hell yeah! It took a while for people to stop and say “Hey wait, this is fucked up, we shouldn’t let this keep going on”, and you could easily argue that everyone else was doing it, so I just went along with it? But once people started speaking up and trying to make a change, you should have hopped on board, because you look like the scum of the earth when you argue for slavery.

Holocaust/Any Genocide

This is the same idea as slavery. Trying to take away the so called inalienable rights of all humans will never look good through the lens of history. For slavery, at least they were using people as a resource (I’m not arguing for slavery), but in the Holocaust, it was a kill as many as possible attitude. How could you possibly think that plan was going to work? This really goes for all similar situations/genocides, this however, is the most well known one.

The Get-on-the-right-side-now Ones

LGBT
Who cares if two gay guys want to be together and marry each other? I don’t understand why people would go out of their way to try and stop other people from doing things that don’t affect them. And frankly, I don’t understand how it’s gotten this far with people who oppose this. I have no problem with it. On a personal level, I haven’t encountered many transsexuals, but I’ll be honest, the idea creeps me out a bit, for lack of a better term. But then again, kissing another dude doesn’t seem very natural to me either. It doesn’t mean I’m going to go around trying to kill any gay, lesbian, bi, or transsexual person. I’m not super knowledgeable on the topic, but I’ll probably fully support any equality laws they propose.

Global Warming/Going Green

go greenI’m hesitant to put just global warming on here. In 12th grade I had a teacher named Mr. Schmidt who was a very very smart guy. Global warming talk was all over the news and he would consistently tell us that a lot of what we’re hearing is BS or unconfirmed. This has always caused me to take everything related to the topic with a grain of salt. However, I still think humans have had a negative impact on the environment. Going green is the wave of the future and if you’re not green, you’re going to be on the wrong side of history. This is an easy topic to wave off because the direct impact isn’t felt by those causing the problem, but we’re smart enough now to realize that at our current rate of consumption (destruction), we won’t last many generations into the future.

The Not Obvious Ones

Legalizing Weed
Had you asked me a few years ago, or even a few months ago when I wrote this post, I would have said this belonged in the above category, but you never know these things until you put them into practice. There are so many variables that go into a scenario like this and it makes it really difficult to predict the outcome. Since legalizing it in Colorado, there have been a slew of problems/issues related. Transporting drugs out of state, related crime, effect on major sports (is it okay for Peyton Manning to smoke, but not Tom Brady?), DUIs for someone who smoked a week ago, etc. The list goes on and on and will only grow. The idea of allowing people to smoke weed is easy, but the execution is never as simple. In the end, I would guess weed will continue to grow in popularity/accessibility, and ultimately be “legal”, but not without problems/backlash.

Religion

This may seem like an odd one, but I’ll put it out there. I’ll start by saying this – religion can be good. In general, they preach living life as a good person and they give people a meaning or a purpose. If believing in god makes you a better person and helps you get through life, I have no problems with that.

rowan atkinsonIf I were a betting man, I’d say there’s no god, though I’m not an atheist. I think there could be a god, I just don’t know, and neither does anyone else. What I will say is this, I definitely don’t believe in any of the religions that are out there now. I think they’re all bogus. As the world continues to progress, a lot of things that religion used to “explain” are being explained by science and logic. I think religion is slowly being backed into a corner. Science is shedding factual light into the dark places that were previously unexplainable, the same dark places that religion blindly tried to explain. Though there is still plenty left to be explained, religion is losing ground and science is gaining. It will take a while, it will take a very long time, but I think in the far future, religion will kind of be a thing of the past.

 

Anyone others for any of them?