Category Archives: sports

Break Free

When Filmakademie student Eugen Merher created his Adidas spec ad “Break Free,” he knew he had something special on his hands. Unfortunately, Adidas’ communications department never got back to him; now they get to watch his ad take off without them.

Break Free by Eugen Merher

The spot is set in a rather unlovely care home for the elderly. One of the residents is a former marathon runner who seems broken by the daily grind of his monotonous existence.

One day, he comes across his old running shoes and decides to take them for a spin. This kind of activity is strictly “not authorized” by the home.  While the staff in the home try to crush his ongoing bids for freedom, his fellow residents are in his corner.

Watch the video up top to see a beautiful piece of visual storytelling. Hopefully it’ll inspire you to get out there and create something special.

Gary Kubiak is stepping down in Denver

You can read the story from Yahoo! Sports

In a bit of a surprising development, Denver Broncos head coach Gary Kubiak has reportedly will step down from his post because of health concerns after Sunday’s game.

Less than two years after taking his dream job to coach for his close friend, Broncos general manager John Elway, and less than a year after beating the Carolina Panthers in the Super Bowl, Kubiak will pass the baton, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

In his short, brilliant run as the head coach for the team he spent the majority of his playing career, Kubiak compiled a 20-11 record heading into the season finale and won Super Bowl 50.

It’s believed that Kubiak, 55, would be stepping down following Sunday’s Week 17 game against the Oakland Raiders. Schefter reported that Kubiak would be finalizing his plans next week.

I like Gary Kubiak as a player.  I liked him as an offensive coordinator.  I liked him Houston as the head coach of the Texans and I liked him as the coach of the Denver Broncos.  I hate to see him leave as a coach but as someone wrote, he has made millions in the game and football is taking a toll on his health.  I assume he will step away for the game and become a studio analysis for a network where the hours are far less and the stress is non-existent.

I hope he enjoys his retirement, his place in Broncos lore, and his next stage in a career that will also probably pay him very well.

The mess that is Huskie Athletics

CBC points out the obvious that recruiting someone to replace Brian Towriss is going to be really hard.

Sumarah expects a nationwide search to replace Towriss, but isn’t sure how candidates will respond. He said any serious contender will want to speak first with Towriss before accepting the job.

“I think you’d kind of like to know what occurred, for sure,” he said about the resignation, which Towriss called a “mutually acceptable agreement” in the statement.

“You don’t want to walk into a hornet’s nest as a coach. I mean, the biggest thing a coach can have and get is support. You want to know you’re getting backing from the university.”

That backing is in question.  Cam Hutchison said it best in this column at the Saskatoon Express.

When it was announced the University of Saskatchewan had formed a Huskie Athletics advisory board of trustees, my first thought was Brian Towriss would no longer be the football coach.

I am confident in saying at least one person on the 11-person board wanted Towriss out.

With a six-to-five split between members of the public and employees of the university on the board, I fear Huskie Athletics is now being run by a citizen or a small group of them. It is the first board of its type in Canada. I find that interesting in itself.

Members of the board are David Dube, Diane Jones Konihowski, Tom Anselmi, David Sutherland, Shelley Brown and Ken Juba. U of S representatives are Patti McDougall, Greg Fowler, Debra Pozega Osburn, Chad London and Peta Bonham-Smith.

U of S president Peter Stoicheff appointed Dube as the first chair of the advisory board. Dube is a businessperson, philanthropist, member of the U of S board of governors and long-time supporter of Huskie Athletics.

Dube has sunk a lot of money into the football program. He is responsible for some of the special uniforms the team wears and funds game-day promotions. They have become spectacular events. I am sure Towriss loved being part of them.

Dube made it clear when the board of trustees was announced that change was long overdue at the U of S.

“Do you have the same cellphone as you had 20 years ago? I doubt it,” Dube said. “I’m sure you don’t fly in a 100-year-old airplane, or a 100-year-old car. This was a 100-year-old governance model.”

And you don’t play football for a 60-year-old coach who has been in the job for 33 years, apparently.

The advisory board, which reports to Stoicheff, was scheduled to begin its work last month.

Not long after it grabbed the reins, Huskies athletic director Basil Hughton announced his retirement. Last week, an emotional Towriss stepped in front of the media to announce he was stepping down after those 33 years as head coach. There is a pattern here.

I don’t get out of the office nearly enough for news conferences. I didn’t want to miss this one because I had a feeling the announcement was going to pertain to Towriss’ future with a program. Was he going to be fired?

I had one question prepared: “What was the role of the advisory board in making this decision?”

Right off the hop, an emotional Towriss announced he was stepping down. A month earlier, Towriss told The StarPhoenix he would be back in 2017 unless someone thought otherwise.

Clearly, someone or a group of someones thought otherwise.

I changed my question.

“Was the decision yours, Brian?”

He stumbled, but toed the company line.

I had a phone call when I returned to the office, confirming what I suspected. A tweet from an insider, since deleted, said people are being naïve if they believed Towriss was leaving of his own volition.

The boosters have been given the U of S Huskies.  It’s as simple as that.  The Huskies are not an athletic department of the University, they are a play thing of wealthy donors.  Have fun recruiting someone to fill that position.

An NFL Sunday with Benny from the Bronx

This is a beautiful story about the NFL embracing the passion of a true fan.

The 2011 NFL lockout had already dragged on for four and a half months, when, in late July, there was finally some hope: the owners had approved a proposal for a new collective bargaining agreement. Sensing the end was nearing, Roger Goodell spent the weekend hammering out the final details with the players in New York. Both sides worked late into Sunday night, and before Goodell left the city in the wee hours of Monday morning, the two sides reached a general agreement to end the work stoppage.

It was a triumphant moment for the NFL and for Goodell himself. As his car snaked through Manhattan and the Bronx, heading to his home in Westchester County, the commissioner had to tell someone right away.

So he called Benny from the Bronx.

To anyone who listens to sports talk radio in the New York City area, Benny needs no introduction. He’s a regular WFAN caller with a thick Bronx accent and an unrivaled enthusiasm for all things NFL, especially his beloved Packers. Goodell had recently been introduced to Benny by Peter King, the editor-in-chief of The MMQB.

Benny had read King’s stories in Sports Illustrated for years, dating back to when Benny spent nearly a decade in and out of psychiatric care for obsessive-compulsive disorder and bulimia. For a while, with no TV, reading King’s stories had been Benny’s only connection to the football world. Benny wrote King a letter one day out of the blue, telling him all this, and they formed a bond over football. King gave Goodell Benny’s number and urged him to call, because, he told commissioner, no one loves the NFL more than Benny from the Bronx.

Benny loved the NFL so much, in fact, that the lockout hit him very hard. For those four and a half months, he didn’t want to leave his house. He didn’t want to see anyone. He thought he’d never see his beloved NFL again. Suicidal thoughts crept back in.

Then, one day in July, Benny woke up to a late-night message on his answering machine from Roger Goodell, telling him the lockout was over and everything would be all right.

Benny dialed Peter King.

He called,” Benny said, stammering and panting with excitement. “He called. HE CALLED!”

How Tiger Woods Life Unravelled

A great longread from ESPN on what went wrong with Tiger Woods.

If Tiger was looking for something, it was seemingly lots of different things, finding pieces in a rotating cast of people. He and Rachel Uchitel bonded over their mutual grief. His fresh wounds from losing Earl helped him understand her scars from her father’s cocaine overdose when she was 15, and her fiancé’s death in the World Trade Center on Sept. 11. The broken parts of themselves fit together, according to her best friend, Tim Bitici. Sometimes Rachel stayed with Tiger for days, Bitici says. Nobody ever seemed to ask Tiger where he was or what he was doing. Bitici went with Rachel down to Orlando to visit Tiger, who put them up in a condo near his house. When he came over, he walked in and closed all the blinds. Then he sat between Tim and Rachel on the couch and they all watched Chelsea Lately.

“This makes me so happy,” Tiger said, according to Bitici.

Many of these relationships had that odd domestic quality, which got mostly ignored in favor of the tabloid splash of threesomes. Tiger once met Jaimee Grubbs in a hotel room, she told a magazine, and instead of getting right down to business, they watched a Tom Hanks movie and cuddled. Cori Rist remembered breakfast in bed. “It was very normal and traditional in a sense,” she says. “He was trying to push that whole image and lifestyle away just to have something real. Even if it’s just for a night.”

The real issue may be that he is an introvert and can’t function as a superstar.

“Frankly, the real Tiger Woods isn’t that marketable,” a friend says. “There isn’t a lot of money to be made off a guy who just wants to be left alone to read a book. Or left alone to play fetch with his dog. Or left alone to play with his kids. Or left alone to lift weights. Or left alone to play a video game. Do you see a trend? Tiger was a natural introvert, and the financial interest for him to be extroverted really drove a wedge in his personality. Being a celebrity changed him and he struggled with that — and he struggled with the fact that he struggled with that.”

Tiger uses well-rehearsed set pieces as standard icebreakers — things that get trotted out again and again. Famously, in front of a GQ reporter in 1997, he told a joke that ended on a punch line about a black guy taking off a condom. He told the same joke in 2006 to a SEAL at a Navy shooting range and to a woman at Butter, a New York nightclub. Talk to enough people who’ve met him and it starts to seem like he’s doing an impersonation of what he thinks a superstar athlete is supposed to be. Once he bought a Porsche Carrera GT, similar to the one driven by many celebrities, but one of the first times he got behind the wheel, the powerful car got away from him, spinning off into the grass near his house. He took it back to the dealership.

Has Brian Kelley overstayed his welcome at Notre Dame?

Is Brian Kelley done at Notre Dame

At Notre Dame, it’s exceptionally important to be considered different. Maybe nowhere else in the country is appearance so vital to the identity of a place: It fancies itself the high-minded sanctuary where athletic and academic excellence can coexist without the need to compromise on either. Feel free to debate how plausible that is. At Notre Dame, it must seem to be possible or else what’s the point. South Bend is no battleground for perception versus reality. Perception, it can easily be argued, is all there is.

So here is why Brian Kelly is in deep, deep trouble as the school’s current football coach: He is losing the perception crusade worse than he ever has, if he hasn’t completely lost it already. The football team is finishing the 14th losing season in 128 years of playing the sport, a year that began with multiple player arrests and ends with the NCAA ordering Notre Dame to vacate victories from 2012 and 2013 after an inquiry into academic fraud. The defeats would be problematic but not necessarily mortal sins, not in the context of Kelly’s tenure as a whole. A belly flop off the moral high ground, however, is intolerable at Notre Dame. And not even Kelly’s fiercest allies can protect him for long if very influential trustees and benefactors feel the fabric of their beloved institution is coming unwound.

It doesn’t even matter whether that’s true or whether Kelly, the seventh-year coach, bears responsibility for any of it. As soon as people of influence feel things are too significantly un-Notre Dame, those to blame are all but finished.

We say “all but,” because there’s nothing a 10-win season can’t cure. In this way Notre Dame has never been much different from anyone else. So far, Kelly has survived the death of videographer Declan Sullivan, who should never have been sent atop a scissor lift that collapsed due to high winds in October 2010. (I was in South Bend that day as the Notre Dame beat writer for the Chicago Tribune. The wind was anything but typical.) Kelly has survived the 2010 suicide of Lizzy Seeberg, a student at neighboring St. Mary’s College, which followed a much-criticized investigation into an alleged sexual assault of Seeberg by then-Notre Dame player Prince Shembo. (Notre Dame’s handling of the case ultimately prompted an investigation by the civil rights office of the Department of Education.) Kelly has even survived his own sideline tantrums, which drew the ire of Notre Dame fans who expect a certain level of comportment from their coach. (Though, honestly, where else does that happen?) Kelly has come through because there have been enough insular excuses and enough academic success paired with enough victories—a 55-23 record before the face plant of 2016—to help Kelly clear controversies large and small.

Recipes for the ultimate Grey Cup Party

Recipes fit for the ultimate Grey Cup Party

For those of you holding a Grey Cup (or a Western or Eastern Division playoff game), check  out Wendy’s collection of recipes for watching the big game.  There will definitely be something that is appropriate for the big game festivities this year, no matter who is playing.

Christmas Gift Guide for the Men in Your Life | 2016 Edition

It’s Wendy.  I’m back to do my annual Christmas Gift Guide for the men in your life, whether that be your husband/boyfriend/father or even some grown children.

Keeping Track of Time

Let’s start with watches.  Nothing quite turns a boy into a man like a good watch.  Here are some great ideas any guys, whether that are always connected or love to get away from it all.

Pebble Smart Watch

Pebble Smart Watch

It does almost everything an Apple Watch does at a fraction of the cost.  It also works with Apple iOS and Android devices.

  • Notifications at a glance: calendar events, text and emails, incoming calls, and more.
  • Includes Pebble Health, a built-in activity and sleep tracker with daily reports and weekly insights.
  • Built-in microphone for voice notes and quick replies (sending voice replies works with AT&T iPhone accounts and most Android apps including SMS, Hangouts, Gmail, Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp and hundreds more. iOS voice features for other carriers will be available in a future software update)
  • 9.5mm thin chassis with curved, ergonomic profile.
  • Marine Grade Stainless Steel bezel with PVD coating, matte and polished finishes.
  • Tough, 2.5D glass display
  • Tactile buttons for easy, eyes-free control.
  • Magnetic charging with cable that works in any USB port.
  • Vibrating motor for discreet alerts and alarms (wake yourself, not your loved ones).
  • Includes 22mm Silicone Strap and USB Charging Cable.
  • Battery life up to 7 days
  • Water resistant to 30 meters
  • Always on, color e-paper display with LED backlight

Another popular option is the Fitbit Blaze Smartwatch.

Invicta Men’s ‘Pro Diver’ Quartz Stainless Steel Casual Watch

Invicta Men's 'Pro Diver' Quartz Stainless Steel Casual WatchLuxury and quality don’t always have to cost a fortune. The Invicta Pro Diver men’s dive watch features a 43mm wide and 12mm thick solid stainless steel case with a unidirectional rotating blue accented silver tone bezel and textured screw down crown. Invicta is powered by Japanese TMI PC32A quartz movement. This stylish watch also features a sharp looking blue dial with white accents silver tone luminous hands and dot hour markers along with the date display function, scratch resistant flame fusion crystal and water resistant to 200 meters. The Invicta Pro-Diver watch comes in an original Invicta gift box and is backed by a 5 years limited warranty.

I bought one for Jordon for his 40th Birthday and it’s looks amazing and draws all sorts of attention whenever he goes out with it.

Timex Men’s Atlantis 100 Watch

Timex Men's Atlantis 100 WatchDiscover the sleek, streamlined design of the Timex Men’s Atlantis 100 Watch. Features include a 100-hour chronograph with lap or split in large digits, an easy-to-use 100-hour countdown timer, a 99-lap counter, a daily alarm, day and month calendar, and a two time zone setting ideal for traveling. Thanks to the Indiglo night-light system, the digital face is easy to read, even in low-light situations. A strong black resin case and stationary black resin bezel hold a durable acrylic window to protect the dial, while a black resin strap with a buckle clasp make this watch ideal for exercising. This versatile timepiece uses precise quartz movement and is water-resistant up to 165 feet (50 meters).

Both Jordon and Mark have (different versions of this) watch and it is their everyday watch which is great for work, looks good if they are going out and tough enough when they are hiking the trail or we are camping.

For even less money, check out the attractive, tough and affordable Casio Illuminator watch.

Moleskine Weekly Planner

Jordon has the 2016-2017 version and loves it.  What makes this dayplanner better than all of the other ones out there, it has your weekly calendar on one side of the page with a full page of notes on the other side.  It is a good enough planner to make Jordon give up Google Calendar and go back to pen and paper.

Mokeskine Weekly Planner

Parker Urban Rollerball Pen

Parker Urban IM Rollerball Pen

A great daytimer is nothing without a great pen.  This pen is nice and durable enough that he will always want it with him but affordable enough that he won’t be afraid to leave home with it.


Getting Personal

From there, let’s look at some personal gifts like an amazing shaving kit or as the British call them, a dopp kit.  You can spend a lot of money on a dopp kit of use an old pencil case.  Personally I find the Kenneth Cole Reaction Shaving Kit to be the perfect balance between the two and you get a bag he will use for the rest of his life while being a good value.

Kenneth Cole Reaction Shaving Kit

 Gillette Fusion Proglide Power Razor With Flexball Handle TechnologyDon’t just get him a Dopp Kitt, inside it place some essential shaving products that he will love.  The market leader is the Gillette Fusion Proglide Power Razor With Flexball Handle Technology.  It’s a razor any man would love and if he doesn’t have one, it’s a great upgrade.

Jordon has preferred the Schick Hydro 5 Power since it came out.  The blades are quite a bit less expensive then Gillette’s yet they last a long time and the shave is a great.  Schick Hydro 5 Power Razor for Men

If you are looking to save some money up front and down the road, I recommend the Magnum M5 razor.  We got one for Mark and he loves it.  5 blades, good shave and a package of blades lasts a long time.

Magnum M5 razor

 Kingsley Shave Soap Bowl with Lid Dark Wood: This will last for decades and he’ll think of you every time he uses it.

Kingsley Shave Soap Bowl with Lid Dark Wood

Henry Cavendish Himalaya Shaving Soap with Shea Butter & Coconut OilHenry Cavendish Himalaya Shaving Soap with Shea Butter & Coconut Oil: He may not admit how good this feels on his skin but he will appreciate it.

Escali 100% Pure Badger Shaving Brush: The bristles on this brush are made from genuine pure badger hair, for a soft and luxurious feeling every time he shaves.

Victorinox Swiss Army Classic Eau de Toilette Spray: For when he goes out and wants to smell nice but still let the world know he is still tough enough to conquer it.

Slim Leather Wallet with ID Window

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Jordon switched to one of these a few years ago and we later gave one to Mark for his birthday.  It easily holds a bank card, a couple of credit cards, drivers license, health card, and a few others without causing your pain if you sit on it or irritate you if it is in your front pocket.

Kenneth Cole Reaction Leather Briefcase

Kenneth Cole Reaction Leather Briefcase

A great looking and affordable high quality leather briefcase.  He will take it with him everywhere.


Out for an Adventure

Victorinox Swiss Army EvoWood 14 Swiss Army Knife

Jordon’s grandfather had a wooden pocket knife that he carried with him every day for his entire life.  This is the knife that your guy will carry will carry in his pocket each and every day of his life.

Victorinox Swiss Army EvoWood 14 Swiss Army Knife

Not only that but if the fate of the world does happen to depend on him, he will be prepared with the same knife that MacGuyver had with him.  If you are looking for a classic red Swiss Army Knife, check out this version.

Gerber Bear Grylls Compact Scout Knife

Gerber Bear Grylls Compact Scout KnifeJordon and Mark aren’t big fans of Bear Grylls (they one time watched him bite the head off a large frog for no real reason) but they love this knife.  It is small enough to carry in a pocket or toss in a bag that is ready and packed for adventure.  Jordon’s knife has  been used to make kindling for a fire, cutting some branches to cook with and is what he grabbed when we a wolf came into our campsite.   He also uses it for work and carries it pretty much everywhere.  If the guy you are shopping for takes pride in being self-reliant and the one that fix any problem, he needs a good knife.  It’s one of those gifts that not only will he appreciate but when he bails everyone out because he has it, you will too.

Solo Stove & Pot Combo

Solo Stove & Pot Combo

Jordon has a Primus Classic Stove and Mark has a MSR Pocket Rocket stove but they fuel canisters.  This does not.  It burns twigs which are always around if you are camping and boils water in under 10 minutes..  It is a Gear of the Year winner from Backpacker Magazine and is ideal if the guy you are shopping for loves the outdoors.

Pentax UP 10×21 Binoculars

Pentax UP 10x21 Binoculars

Jordon gave me a pair of these for Mother’s Day and a pair for Mark for his birthday.  Jordon keeps a small pair of binoculars in this bag all of the time for when we are hiking and they are great for watching Mark’s football games at SMF Field.  The 10 times magnification is great for almost everything and they are good for almost any kind of daylight viewing.


Chilling out at Home

We live in a small house in Saskatoon.  We don’t have the room for a vast sound system or home theatre system.  So if we are entertaining at home, we want a great room filling audio system in a small package and good headphones when we want to escape into our work or a great playlist.

Let’s start with some headphones.

Bose SoundTrue II Headphones

Bose SoundTrue II Headphones

Bose Sound True around-ear headphones II were engineered with advanced Bose technologies. They feature exclusive TriPort technology so your music sounds deep, clear and full of life.  The headphones feature a softly padded headband that distributes weight evenly across your head, and memory foam creates a gentle cushion around your ears. So they stay light and comfortable whether or not you are working in a co-working space or just relaxing to a long playlist at home.

Sennheiser HD 202 II Headphones

If the cost of the Bose headphones are too much, check out a long lasting resident of these gift guides, the Sennheiser HD 202 II Headphones are a great value.

Sennheiser HD202II Headphones

The HD 202 MK II closed, dynamic hi-fi stereo headphones are the ideal partner for DJs and powerful modern music, providing great insulation against ambient noise and a vivid, crisp bass response. The rugged lightweight headphones have a secure fit and can be used for both mobile sources and home (mini) hi-fi systems. When out and about, a convenient cord take-up lets you adjust the headphone cable to the required length.

For when we want some room filling sound, we use our Bluetooth speakers.  It is discrete enough to never be noticed but has enough oomph to fill the room.

Bose Wave Music System IV

Bose Wave Music System IV

This is the sound system you have been looking for.  For almost all of us, the first time we ever heard one of these, we went, “Oh, that is what the big deal is about.”  The latest Bose Wave System IV works with your home Wi-Fi network and Bluetooth devices so you can play almost anything you can imagine. Use it to stream millions of songs from music services like Spotify and Pandora, thousands of Internet radio stations and your stored music library. There’s also a CD player and AM/FM radio tuner. So you can hear whatever you want with room-filling sound-all from an easy-to-use system that now comes in a new design.

It is the kind of gift that not only will he love but so will the entire household.

Amazon Echo and Amazon Echo Dot

You really want an Amazon Echo

I don’t know how to best describe Amazon Echo other than comparing it to either the computer on Star Trek or Jarvis from Ironman.  It is like Siri for your home.

Setting up an Amazon Echo

It started out as a music player but it keeps getting smarter and smarter.  Check this page out for what it can do now (and it keeps getting smarter in the future).  Of course if you aren’t looking to play music, check out the Amazon Echo Dot.   At $50 you can have them all over your house.  If two of them hear you, the closest one answers.  It connects with everything to your phone to your furnace.  Again with it being cloud based, the upgrades happen online so you aren’t a slave to adding new hardware all of the time.

Anyone who owns a smartphone or tablet would probably enjoy owning a portable Bluetooth speaker. The best deliver sound quality that’s good enough for casual music listening, podcasts, and Internet radio. Portable Bluetooth speakers have a rechargeable battery that lets you easily take them all around the house or to the park or the beach. We’ve found they make hotel rooms feel more like home and long business trips much more bearable.

UE Roll 2

Here is what The Wirecutter has to say about the UE Roll 2

The original UE Roll was our unanimous pick for best portable speaker when we tested 30 new models last year, and we feel just as strongly about its replacement, the UE Roll 2. Like the original, the UE Roll 2 sounds full, with smooth reproduction of everything from bass notes tUE Roll 2 Bluetooth Speakero cymbals, and it plays loud enough to fill a hotel room or a beach blanket with sound. It’s so watertight it will survive being dunked one meter underwater for 30 minutes. Seven months of worldwide traveling with the original Roll have only confirmed our love of this design. The only real downside is that it lacks a speakerphone function.

Bose SoundLink Mini II

Bose SoundLink Mini II Bluetooth Speaker System

For those who want even better sound quality and louder volume and don’t need their portable Bluetooth speaker to be super-portable, the Bose SoundLink Mini II is worth the cost (roughly twice the price of the Roll 2). It’s shocking to hear how much better the SoundLink Mini II sounds than most of its competitors, with clearer voices and a fuller sound closer to what you’d expect to hear from a decent small stereo system. It also plays loud enough to drown out a small dinner party. At 1½ pounds the SoundLink Mini II is perfect for lugging along on family vacations or from room to room in the house but probably heavier than backpackers and business travelers will want to carry.

Panasonic ErgoFit In-Ear Earbuds Headphones with Mic/Controller

31KkJHBsooLThese are always dirt cheap and available everywhere so it’s easy to dismiss them as not that good but The Wirecutter’s blind hearing test of in ear headphones consistently rates these near the top of their rankings despite their low price.  So if you are on a budget but are looking for a great gift for a traveler, hiker, or someone who is always on the move, you can do a lot worse than a pair of these headphones.

Harman Kardon Soundsticks III 2.1 Channel Multimedia Speaker System with Subwoofer

Harman Kardon Soundsticks III 2.1 Channel Multimedia Speaker System with Subwoofer

A 6-inch, 20-watt downward-firing powered subwoofer. Eight 1-inch full-range transducers. Plug-and-play compatibility with virtually any multimedia device. And stunning industrial design that perfectly matches the clarity of the sound. The Harman Kardon SoundSticks III desktop sound system brings a new level of excitement to music, games and movies with a minimum of wiring and looks spectacular doing it.


Something to Watch

Acer Iconia One 7” Tablet

Looking for an affordable tablet?  The Acer Iconia One 7” Tablet is the one you are looking for.

Acer Iconia One 7” Tablet

Another slightly more expensive option is the Asus Zenpad 8” tablet.  Of course you will want a discrete case to carry it in.  I recommend this one that looks like a manila envelope.

Manila Envelope 7" Tablet Case by Boxwave

Jordon got one of these when he bought a Kindle a few years back.  They protect the tablet well and people smile whenever he pulls a tablet out of one.

Apple iPad Mini 4

If you want to go higher end, check out the Apple iPad Mini 4.

Apple iPad Mini 4

Capture the Action

Why does he wants a drone?  Why do you want a drone?  Check out this video of a New Zealand family vacation which I love.

How much fun would one of these be to document a family vacation or a long weekend away.  Our household is a big fan of Casey Neistat and his use of drones do such a great job of capturing his adventures and they are so easy to use.

DJI Mavic Pro

DJI Mavic Pro Drone

One of the best drones one the market as well as more affordable than other options on the market.  Since it folds up, it is small enough to fit in a shoulder bag and carry with you always.  A 27 minute battery life gives you the time to capture all of the footage you want.

Yuneec  Breeze Drone

Yuneec Breeze Drone

The Yuneec Breeze is another affordable drone that is designed for social media.  If the DJI Mavic is there to capture cities and adventures, the Yuneec Breeze exists to capture you.  It’s even easier to fly, works well inside and out, and has a 4k video camera to capture everything.

It doesn’t have the performance that the DJI Mavic does but it costs about half as much.

Around the House

Survival Seed Vault

So if you are convinced the world will end in 2017 or 2018, you probably already have this.  For the rest of us, this seed vault offers a wide variety of seeds to take you guys garden to the next level.

Survival Seed Vault

These 20 fruits and vegetables provide an excellent source of nutrients you need for a well-balanced diet. Each seed variety is individually sealed to remove air and moisture and will store for five years and even longer at temperatures below 75 F.

What’s Inside the Survival Seed Vault:

  • Blue Lake Bush Beans <150 seeds
  • California Wonder Bell Pepper < 70 seeds
  • Market more Cucumber < 150 seeds
  • Scarlet Nantes Carrot < 800 seeds
  • Parris Island Cos Romaine Lettuce < 900 seeds
  • Golden Acre Cabbage < 530 seeds
  • Detroit Dark Red Beet < 260 seeds
  • Lincoln Sweet Pea < 100 seeds
  • Stowell’s Evergreen Sweet Corn < 260 seeds
  • Beefsteak Tomato < 180 seeds
  • Champion Radish < 320 seeds
  • Green Sprouting Broccoli < 500 seeds
  • Waltham Butternut Winter Squash < 100 seeds
  • Bloomsdale Long Standing Spinach < 260 seeds
  • Yellow Sweet Spanish Onion < 145 seeds
  • Black Turtle Bean < 70 seeds
  • Hales Best Cantaloupe < 70 seeds
  • Snowball Cauliflower < 285 seeds
  • Black Beauty Zucchini < 50 seeds
  • Crimson Sweet Watermelon < 60 seeds

Manly Cookbooks

If you guy likes to cook, raise his game with one of these fun cookbooks this Christmas.  I picked a barbecue/entertaining focus because not only will this encourage him to help out around the house but he’ll have some friends over to eat all of the food he has proudly made.  It’s the gift that keeps on giving.

Cooking with Beer CookbookGordon Ramsay's Sunday Lunch: 25 Simple Menus to Pamper Family and Friends Essential Company's Coming Guys' CookbookEat Like a Man: The Only Cookbook a Man Will Ever NeedBig Bob Gibson's BBQ Book: Recipes and Secrets from a Legendary Barbecue JointPaul Kirk's Championship Barbecue: Barbecue Your Way to Greatness With 575 Lip-Smackin' Recipes from the Baron of BarbecueSouthern Living Ultimate Book of BBQ: The Complete Year-Round Guide to Grilling and SmokingThe Hell's Kitchen Cookbook: Recipes from the KitchenGordon Ramsay's Home Cooking: Everything You Need to Know to Make Fabulous FoodGordon Ramsay's Fast Food: More Than 100 Delicious, Super-Fast, and Easy RecipesThe Dude Diet: Clean(ish) Food for People Who Like to Eat Dirty

You might us well upgrade his cooking utensil game while you are it.

Victorinox 8 Inch Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife

Victorinox 8 Inch Fibrox Pro Chef's Knife

 

A great all-round knife that at a great price. The Fibrox Pro 8″ Chef’s Knife is optimally weighted with high-quality, lightweight European steel that reduces hand and wrist fatigue, making it feel less like a knife and more like an extension of the hand. Perfectly suited for dicing onions, mincing shallots, chopping herbs, crushing garlic, slicing meats of all varieties, and shredding cabbage, its versatility will quickly make it his go-to knife.

Cuisinart Deluxe Stainless-Steel Grill Set

Cuisinart Deluxe Stainless-Steel Grill Set

  • Grill set includes chef’s spatula, grill tongs, silicone basting brush, 4 pairs of corn holders, cleaning brush, and extra brush head
  • Also includes aluminum storage case–perfect for the on-the-go griller
  • Durable stainless-steel tool construction
  • Elongated handles; convenient handle rings for hanging
  • Spatula has built-in bottle opener

Time to Play

DMI Bristle Dartboard in Oak Finish Cabinet

DMI Bristle Dartboard in Oak Finish Cabinet

All work and no play makes for a dull guy.  How about spicing up their games room with a dartboard, darts, and oak cabinet.

Christmas & Holiday Gift Guides

Christmas-Gift-Guide2-1[13]Christmas Gifts for the Men in Your Life | Women In Your Life | In-Laws| Teens | Elementary School Aged | Explorers and Adventurers | Cooks & Foodies

It literally can’t get any worse

I don’t blog much about work but I thought you would like this.

My boss is a genuine long term New England Patriots fan.  His wife is a Pittsburgh Steelers fan who hates the Patriots.  I think that is awesome.   They are genuine fans.  I don’t know how their marriage survived some of those playoff games.

A sad Tom  BradySo being a Broncos fan, you know how classy and graceful I would have been when the Broncos beat the Tom Brady led Patriots twice and won the Super Bowl.  Well I may have posted a photo of Tom Brady sitting on the turf near tears on the bulletin board.  Just like that one to the left.  See I can’t even help myself now.  It wasn’t always classy.  As a true fan, he accepted the mockery that his team was beaten by a team with a noodle armed QB.

Then this came out.  The Broncos have the worst QB situation in the NFL.

The Broncos have the worst QB situation in the NFL.

That Sanchez may actually lose a training camp battle to Trevor Siemian tells you everything you need to know about his ability. The Broncos will not ask much from whomever they elect to start come Week 1: Just don’t turn the ball over too much and complete some simple play-action passes. But even that may be too much for Sanchez, who, even at an advanced age, is just a mess in the pocket, melting down at the first sign of pressure. And, unlike his predecessor Peyton Manning, Sanchez offers very little in the way of pre-snap adjustments.

When Denver signed him, friends phoned up and were like, “How are you and Mark handling this?”  It was like this was sports news that was sooooo bad, it actually provoked some people I know to think, “I should phone up Jordon to see how he is handling this.”

Then you read the rest of the reviews and it’s like Mark Sanchez stole the writers girlfriend while at USC, they are all pretty fair.  Sanchez is just that bad. 

Guess who is number 1?  Yeah, some dude from New England.

I read this and thought, “It’s going to be a long season at work.”  Note that I said it wasn’t going to be a long day or week but a long NFL season at work.

I was left with a ethical work related dilemma.  Do I show Glen this or just pretend it didn’t happen ignore the reality that Mark Sanchez is the Broncos QB.  Maybe he wouldn’t realize how bad Mark Sanchez was.  Yeah right.  That whole AFC East thing.

When I showed the article to Mark, who is also a Broncos fan, he goes, “Bad couple of months at work ahead.”

So I emailed my boss with the subject like, “I’ll just get this out there” and sent him the link.  He didn’t even read the entire list.  Seeing the Broncos at the bottom of the QB pile was enough joy for him.   If I was him, I would have just read it slowly and savored the list of horrible QBs that were listed as better than Mark Sanchez.

As Mark and I talked, we realized that there is only one way to get through this.  That is go online and purchase this life sized replica of the Vince Lombardi Trophy and carry it around work wherever I go.  If I am writing, I have it beside me.  If I am in a meeting, it’s there with me as well.  I even take it to the washroom or for lunch.  Then whenever I am mocked for whatever Sanchez has buttfumbled this week, I say, “I’m sorry, I am just admiring my teams Super Bowl 50 trophy” and move on to the next topic.

Replica Super Bowl 50 Trophy

Wendy wasn’t enthused at me spending almost $600 on this so it looks like a long season of mocking is ahead.  Mark Sanchez, it literally can’t get any worse.

Update: Here is some feedback from friends.

  • Dominant defenses generally slip the next season.  There is little chance that Mark Sanchez could become Trent Dilfer.  Partly because no one thinks that Sanchez is even as good as Trent Dilfer.
  • There is some hope that Paxton Lynch could become a great QB but this year?  It’s unlikely that he becomes the next Ben Roeslisberger and ride a dominant defense and running game to a 15-1 record.  Also, that ended with a loss to the Tom Brady lead Patriots.
  • My favorite comment was “even if you do buy the trophy, Sanchez would just fumble it”.
  • Some Detroit Lions fans out there have told me that if they could win the Super Bowl, they would take Mark Sanchez and all of the mocking from Patriots fans in the world.  So context is everything. 
  • I actually hoped the Broncos were able to draft Sanchez out of USC back in the Josh McDaniels era.  Instead they drafted Tim Tebow.  At least Sanchez is still back in the league.  Well maybe that isn’t a good thing.

Now I will honor the Rules for being a Sports Fan.  If there is anything left sacred in the world of sports, it is these rules.  The main one is that I can’t complain for five years since the Broncos won a championship.  So no Mark Sanchez complaining from me.  None at all.

Verizon to purchase Yahoo!

Here are the details at the Globe and Mail.

As a Canadian, I don’t have any experience with Verizon but they have done a decent job in stabilizing Aol and hopefully the same thing will be done with Yahoo!  Maybe they can figure out what to do with their content properties like Yahoo! Sports.

I don’t understand Yahoo! Sports.  They have an amazing roster of writers like Dan Wetzel, Pat Forde, Adrian Wojnarowski as well as some of the best bloggers in the business.  I love their writing and coverage.  It rivals the best in the business but for whatever reason, Yahoo! hides in the middle of all of this other crap that bring in from content farms or even the Yahoo! Contributor Network (where anyone could write garbage and it would appear on the site).  That was the problem with the site, there was all of this garbage and you actually had to work to find the good stuff.

When the site was excellent, it was their contributors providing opinion, bloggers covering news, and the AP and wire services doing game summaries.  You could go and easily find the teams you wanted to read about and the writers you wanted to follow.   It was a combination that made them one of the best sites on the web.  Now go look at it.  All of it is sponsored or third party content disguised as click bait.

Hopefully Verizon will stop this and even it takes a short term loss, figure out how to make some of their signature sites great again.  Some of the properties have gone from the best of the web to the worst.  If Yahoo! ever becomes anything ever again, great and easy to find content will be a big part of it.