Moving On Over

February 16, 2009

I’m no longer blogging at this site.  I’ve moved to http://erikullestad.blogspot.com/

(For those who do the rss thing, here’s the new feed — http://feeds2.feedburner.com/blogspot/erikullestad)

Why move?

I’m tired of explaining the “godsnowhere” gimmick to people.  I need a break from WordPress, which is an awesome blog site (probably the best), but the features are limited if I don’t self-host my website (which costs money)…and requires a certain level of tech-savvy that I don’t have.

I’ll be doing the same kinds of things at the new site.  I would be much obliged if you’d join me over at KOINONIA.  Thanks…

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Super Bummed

February 6, 2009

Like any good Lutheran, I like to take the long view on the issues du jour.  Wait to formulate a cogent thought before spouting an opinion.  Avoid the tendency to jump on or off a given bandwagon.  Live in the tension.  Blah blah blah…

After 5 days of reflecting, watching video, listening to talking heads, and reading hundreds of articles…I’m ready to weigh in on Super Bowl 43 / XLIII with a list of 10 “quick hits”:

 

  1. Easily one of the Top 5 Super Bowls ever in terms of big plays & riveting drama
  2. Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band rocked…especially for AARP members
  3. Kurt Warner cemented his status as a Hall of Fame QB, even in defeat
  4. John Madden says a lot of goofy things over the course of 4 hours
  5. The commercials were uninspired, unoriginal, and uninteresting
  6. Santonio Holmes only got one foot down on the game winning TD
  7. Santonio Holmes should have been penalized 15 yards for excessive celebration after said TD
  8. I will forever believe that Kurt Warner’s game-ending “fumble” was really an incompletion
  9. Lamar Woodley clipped Tim Hightower on the James Harrison TD at the end of the 1st half
  10. I’m way more bitter about this than I thought

Unexpected Inspiration

January 23, 2009

I’m a sports junkie; as much as any church worker I know.  This is not something I’m bragging about.  Sometimes I wonder how much smarter I’d be if a significant part of my brain hard drive wasn’t already bogged down with names, stats, and stories related to sports.  In the grand scheme of life, my devotion to the world of sports is completely and utterly worthless.  I know this; and yet I can’t cut the cord.  

I listen to sports talk radio whenever I’m in the car (the kids HATE it!).  In the past year I’ve subscribed to no less than eight daily or weekly sports podcasts.  I’ve gotten it down to a more manageable number lately — 3 hours a day of the Dan Patrick Show, 30 minutes a day of PTI, and 2-3 hours a week of the B.S. Report.  I just finished listening to Bill Simmons (aka, ESPN’s “The Sports Guy”) and J.A. Adande from the L.A. Times talk about two of my favorite topics — basketball and socio-political culture.  If you are even remotely interested in these topics, or if you just like hearing intelligent people talk with each other, you should carve out some time to listen to the podcast.  (iTunes or Sports Guy’s World)

I realize I sound like a meat-head when I give props to degenerate sports writers for their political insights…but trust me on this.  I have no problem saying this is one of the best sports / race / American culture / Obama conversations ever recorded.  (I didn’t agree with everything that was said – but it was entertaining and enlightening.)

This is especially relevant for people who might be flying in the next few days and want to listen to something on the plane between…say…I dunno…Iowa and New Orleans!!!  Only 4 more days…


Tebow the Messiah

January 12, 2009

I caught this photo montage over at The Big Lead earlier today.  It literally made orange Fanta come out of my nose as I tried to keep from laughing.

 

I really like Tim Tebow.  However, by the end of the college football championship game, I was getting pretty sick of Thom Brennaman’s over-the-top slurping of young Tebow.  By all accounts he’s an amazing kid; one who lives out his faith in meaningful ways.  I’m glad he’s sticking around for his senior year (his NFL prospects as a QB are average at best) so he can hone his decision-making skills, develop a more accurate arm, learn how to walk on water, and discover a cure for cancer.


Oops, My Bad

December 31, 2008

Don’t you just love the feeling of a prediction coming true?  Hidden in the fine print of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs must be the “I Told You So” corollary.  A lot of this has to do with our own insecurities of being *gasp* wrong.  We all know people who will brag endlessly over something they correctly anticipated…even something as insignificant or random as, “I betcha gas prices will go up next week.”

So what happens when you’re a national sports writer?  Their job in covering the world of sports is to be salacious enough to pique reader interest, but solid enough to make salient points.  Thanks to the folks at Real Clear Sports, we have a list of the Top 10 Erroneous Sports Columns of 2008.

  1. The Patriots will win the Super Bowl (they lost to the Giants)
  2. The Mets won’t collapse again (they did)
  3. The Rays won’t make the playoffs (they made it to the World Series)
  4. The Falcons screwed up picking Matt Ryan #3 (he’s the offensive rookie of the year)
  5. The Lakers will win the NBA title (they lost to the Celtics)
  6. Donovan McNabb’s time in Philadelphia is over (he’s in the playoffs)
  7. Kobe Bryant won’t win the MVP (he won it easily)
  8. Drew Brees will break Dan Marino’s passing record (he was 15 yards short)
  9. World Series will be an all-time “classic” (it sucked)
  10. Tony Romo’s broken finger will actually help the Cowboys (they sucked)

The good news (or Good News) is that even people who say stupid things about other people can be forgiven.


Recruiting Tales

December 27, 2008

Absolutely fascinating article about the college football recruiting process, as experienced by Jamarkus McFarland from Lufkin, TX.  

Also, I’m a respectable 5-4 in my bowl game pick’em contest…which is good enough for 36th out of 500.  I’m in the odd position of rooting FOR Florida State to beat Wisconsin tonight.


Pop(pa) Warner

December 24, 2008

I realize this is the second sports-related article I’ve re-posted in as many days, but ESPN.com served up another feel-good football story.  This one is about Iowa’s favorite son, Kurt Warner.  I remember going to a University of Northern Iowa game as a kid and watching Warner play QB for the team that eventually lost to Marshall in the Division I-AA college football championship game.  When he made headlines in the late-90s as a “grocery store shelf stocker turned NFL MVP”, I enjoyed seeing national media outlets do live reports from the Cedar Falls Hy-Vee.  It’s been fun to follow the roller coaster that has been Warner’s football career for the past 15+ years.

This article, part of ESPN.com’s “NFL Hot Read” series, provides a fascinating glimpse into the juxtaposition that is Kurt Warner.  There is a lot to comment on in this piece…but I should probably head to bed so Santa can make a cameo.

Merry Christmas!