Alvin Gentry finally has his boys playing good ball. The New Orleans Pelicans I anticipate them to put together a nice run. The duo combinations they have @ PG and PF is enough to beat most teams in the NBA. Clippers have been looking very out of synch and have not been playing their best ball. Paul and Blake will try their best, but as crazy as it sounds I think Pelicans will steal this one. Either way this will be a close one.
Pelicans plus 6.5 for 2 units. GL.
I may have more picks later. Follow me on Twitter @podpicks1
JERK OF THE WEEK: Jerks with Awesome Girl Who Loves Football
My girlfriend, Awesome Girl Who Loves Football, flew in to Philadelphia this past Wednesday night. I knew this meant three things:
1. I would spend an awesome weekend with her.
2. I wouldn't get any work done, which is why I did tons in advance.
3. We would see an unbelievable amount of jerks together. We have the same personality and tend to notice all of the strange people around us, as I discovered when I visited her in the summer.
Well, I was right on all three counts. I had an amazing weekend and I barely got anything accomplished. In fact, we didn't eat breakfast until 5:30 p.m. on Thursday - two bowls of cereal while watching Pardon the Interruption - and 6:30 p.m. on Friday, as we scarfed down some Pop Tarts while driving to Neshaminy Mall. Coincidentally, I lost five pounds in a span of five days without even hitting the gym - a sign that this is a recipe for a very healthy lifestyle.
Oh, and we definitely encountered a plethora of jerks together. I obtained so much writing material that I'd like to share with you.
1. Philadelphia International Airport
Awesome Girl Who Loves Football's flight arrived from Charlotte at 11:57 Wednesday night. It's a half-hour drive from my house to the airport if there's no traffic, but I had never parked there before so I decided to leave a bit early. I've been driven there to fly out, and I've dropped people off in the departures section, but I have never actually parked in the arrivals area. I asked my mom what to do, and she said to find the right terminal - there would be signs for the correct airline - and just park on the ground floor so I could get out easier.
Sounds simple enough, right? That's what I thought. I checked the e-mail I received from Expedia, and it said that she would be arriving in Terminal B. When I arrived at the airport, I saw that US Airways, her airline, was in Terminal B. So, I parked in the Terminal B garage. This was so simple, I didn't know why I was stressing out in the first place.
I followed the signs to baggage claim. I looked at all of the monitors for an incoming flight from Charlotte, but couldn't find one. There weren't even any workers in the area. The only person I saw in baggage claim was a bearded black man talking to himself and slapping himself in the face. Clearly, he was his own jerk of the week.
I stood in baggage claim for a few minutes - away from the psychotic homeless person - waiting for anyone normal to come by. It was now 11:40, and I was getting concerned, so I walked down the hall, looking desperately for any employees. Eventually, I somehow stumbled upon an office where four employees were laughing about something - perhaps the hallucinogens they slipped into the bum's flask. I approached the lady at the counter and asked her if there were any flights coming in from Charlotte. She checked the computer and told me that I had to go to Terminal A. I asked where that was, and she told me to go out the door, across baggage claim and up the stairs.
I followed her instructions. When I reached the second floor, I looked around and saw nothing, save for an old black woman asleep on the bench. I considered waking her up and asking her for directions, but she would only ask me for change - assuming she was even lucid enough to have a normal conversation with me. For all I knew, she and the hobo downstairs were star-crossed lovers who've been searching each other for years, only to be thwarted by the labyrinthine setup of the Philadelphia International Airport.
For a second, I considered joining the bag lady on the bench. I didn't see any signs for Terminal A, so I thought I would be cursed to roam the Philadelphia International Airport for years in search of Awesome Girl Who Loves Football. The airport employees would then put hallucinogens in my flask and make fun of me. Eventually, I'd be so depressed that I'd start slapping myself
"No! I'm not giving up that easily!" I shouted to no one in particular. Luckily,the lady on the bench didn't wake up to ask me for change, so I stumbled forward toward a brightly lit section of the hallway. I turned the corner and saw another old black woman riding around on some sort of a vacuum cleaner. Finally, a real human being I could talk to!
Me: Excuse me, ma'am, how do I get to Terminal A?
Vacuum Lady: Oh suga, you in Terminal B.
Me: I know. I need to get to Terminal A.
Vacuum Lady: Oh suga, Terminal A is close for the evenin'.
Me: But the people downstairs told me that a flight from Charlotte is due to fly into Terminal A!
Vacuum Lady: What people downstairs? I been downstairs, and I ain't seen nobody downstairs.
What? Was I imagining this whole thing? Did I not talk to anyone? Was there even a flight coming in? Does Awesome Girl Who Loves Football even exist? What if I was really the hallucinating bum downstairs and I conjured up my entire existence, believing that I was some sort of Web site owner who conveniently wrote about football for a living from his own house? Would I be cursed to aimlessly roam the catacombs of the airport for the rest of my meaningless existence?
My mind was blown. I didn't even know what to say. Fortunately, a pilot of some sort happened to walk by at that instant.
Vacuum Lady: Excuse me, sir, is Terminal A close for the evenin'?
Pilot: No, I believe there is still one more flight due in.
Vacuum Lady: Oh it appears to be that Terminal A is still open.
Me: Yes! Can you tell me how I can get there?
Vacuum Lady: OK suga, you gonna have to go downs the stairs and walk downs the hall to Terminal C and then you gonna cross ova another hall and walk ups another stair and then cross ova another hall and then you gonna be at Terminal A.
Me: Wow, that sounds confusing. Can you repeat that?
Pilot: No, you don't have to do all that. See those doors? They lead to a train platform. Just walk across the train platform, and you'll be in Terminal A.
Vacuum Lady: Oh OK, he can do jus that.
I don't know why Vacuum Lady tried to confuse me with her nonsensical directions, but I followed the pilot's instructions and quickly located baggage claim for Terminal A. I still somehow was early - but five minutes later I joyfully greeted Awesome Girl Who Loves Football.
2. Potato Chip Thief and Wawa the Hutt
I barely ate anything all day, so as we arrived into my neighborhood around 1 in the morning, we had two options: a random, late-night diner or Wawa. Awesome Girl Who Loves Football never had been to a Wawa in her life, so I decided to take her there. She wasn't even hungry, but she wanted to see the inside of one after reading about it on this Web site for so many years.
I ordered the standard - a meatball-and-cheese hoagie. Since I'm on a diet, aiming to lose 0.1 pounds each week, I chose the 6-inch version instead of the foot-long. I grabbed the order slip, and we stood in line, waiting for the cashier to come to the register. This took a while because the cashier happened to be someone I like to call Wawa the Hutt. This person is an enormously large Mexican woman with a faint mustache. When I say "enormously large," I'm not exaggerating. She's easily pushing 350 pounds. In fact, I could almost hear her thinking, "HO HO HO JEDI, GOOD CHOICE BUY MEATBALL CHEESE SANDWICH BUT WHY NO FOOT LONG? ME BUY FOOT LONG IF ME CUSTOMER, MAYBE EVEN TWO-FOOT LONG, HO, HO, HO."
As I was handing my cash over to Wawa the Hutt, we noticed that two men, one of whom was another Wawa employee, appeared to be doing some sort of jig near the entrance. The two guys were moving oddly, apparently mimicking each other's movements. The Wawa employee then snatched something out of the other dude's hands. The second guy then bolted out the door and ran toward the street.
I suddenly realized what happened, but I had to ask to make sure.
Me: Wait, did that guy really just try to steal those bag of chips?
Wawa Employee: Yeah! What an idiot!
The other Wawa employees, who were just standing around, had a good laugh at that. Wawa the Hutt was amused as well.
Wawa the Hutt: HO HO HO, IF ME STEAL FOOD ME STEAL MORE THAN BAG OF CHIPS, HO HO HO, OODA BOODA JEDI, HO HO HO.
Awesome Girl Who Loves Football, meanwhile, was completely amused by this whole situation. I turned to her and simply said, "Welcome to Philadelphia."
3. Angry Asian Guy
My sister hosted her second-annual 26th birthday party at my house Friday. It was a cowboy-themed affair, but because I don't own any cowboy hats and absolutely hate jeans, I wasn't going to dress up like that.
Awesome Girl Who Loves Football doesn't own any cowboy hats either, and being a New York Giants' fan, she didn't like idea of dressing up like a cowboy anyway. So, we thought it would be funny to don Giants' gear because the Cowboys and Giants are divisional rivals. That's why I have several pictures wearing a Giants' t-shirt on my Facebook profile. And yes, I'm sporting jeans. I considered sweat pants, but I wanted to look my best for Awesome Girl Who loves Football.
The party was tons of fun. I won three games of beer pong in a row with Awesome Girl Who Loves Football as my partner. There was lots of delicious food, which thwarted my tenth-of-a-pound diet. And Body Burner got pretty drunk and started singing "Big Dick Walt!" whenever he wasn't covering himself (and parts of my house) with some caution tape that he found in my garage.
There were two jerk moments during the party though. The first is when my friend Val initially conversed with Awesome Girl Who Loves Football.
Val: So, did Walt show you around Philly yet?
Awesome Girl Who Loves Football: We went to Neshaminy Mall earlier today.
Val: Nesham... Neshaminy Mall? NESHAMINY MALL!? WALT, WHY DID YOU TAKE THIS GIRL TO NESHAMINY MALL!?
Me: What? What's wrong with Neshaminy Mall?
Val: What's wrong with Neshaminy Mall? WHAT'S WRONG WITH NESHAMINY MALL!? It's the crappiest mall in America, that's what's wrong with Neshaminy Mall!
Awesome Girl Who Loves Football: I liked it...
Val: No, there are so many other malls that are better, like King of Prussia Mall. Walt, why didn't you take her there?
Me: King of Prussia is so overrated. It's like 45 minutes away and all of the stores are the same. Besides, we were just there to buy a Giants' t-shirt for...
Val: No, no, Neshaminy Mall is terrible. Where else are you going to take her? Wawa for dinner?
Me: Umm... yeah, we went to Wawa.
Val: Ugh! Walter, Walter...
I still don't understand what's wrong with this. Neshaminy Mall is cool. Wawa has awesome food. Who wouldn't want to go to Neshaminy Mall and Wawa? That's like my dream day. So, I apologize for liking simple things. Luckily, Awesome Girl Who Loves Football enjoys them as well.
Anyway, several guests slept over, so people made breakfast downstairs the following morning. Awesome Girl Who Loves Football and I came down pretty late; everyone was already finishing up. My sister pointed to a plate containing two pieces of French toast.
"There are two slices of French toast - one for you, and one for Awesome Girl Who Loves Football," my sister said. "Sorry, but Angry Asian Guy ate the rest."
Angry Asian Guy is a friend of mine from Penn State. He's a very short, Asian man with a bad temper who always wears a fedora hat. He can be cool, but sometimes he can be a dick - like he was Saturday morning. My sister later told me about what he did during breakfast.
My Sister: Walt, it was horrible. Angry Asian Guy ate like six pieces of French toast. I told him to stop, but he kept piling them on to his plate.
Me: Ah, so that's why we were stuck with only one each.
My Sister: Yeah, I told him to stop because I was saving some for you and Awesome Girl Who Loves Football, but he wouldn't listen. He said that because you weren't downstairs yet, he could eat your food.
Me: Are you serious? What an a**hole.
My Sister: Yeah. I was like, "But this is Walt's house," and all he said was, "too bad, rules are rules."
Me: Rules are rules? What does that even mean?
My Sister: He said the rules were if you were late for breakfast, others could eat your food.
Me: Wow, who made up those rules?
My Sister: I don't know, but that's not even the worst part! After he was finished, he asked me if I could wrap up some more food to take home with him. When I told him to wrap it up himself, he snapped at me.
Me: What a surprise. What did he say?
My Sister: He told me that his parents ordered him to bring some food home with him, and that I wasn't being a very good hostess because I wasn't wrapping up food for him and his family.
I really wish I were making all of this up. No, really. I wish I were because I only had one piece of French toast. It was a horrifying morning.
You know what? I can't even type anymore. I'm so upset by not having more than one piece of French toast that I'm going to have to cut this entry short. Yes, yes, I know, you want to keep reading about the jerks I saw with Awesome Girl Who Loves Football, but I am running on no sleep. I've been having terrible dreams every night about fedora-clad Asian men stealing my French toast and other delicious food items. I keep waking up in a cold sweat, but the nightmare reoccurs over and over. In my slumber, I always think I'm going to eat more than one slice of French toast, but that's never the case.
Actually, the truth is that I realized I have so many other jerks to write about from my weekend with Awesome Girl Who Loves Football that it's going to approach 6,000 words if I don't split this into a two-parter - and if I write 6,000 words, I'll develop Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, and then my fingers will fall off. And then I won't be able to work on this site anymore and I'll be broke, which means I'll have to walk around the airport asking for money.
Stay tuned next week. I'll have many more jerks from my experience with Awesome Girl Who Loves Football - including my dad and an old favorite, Gay Portuguese Waiter.