The So Late It’s Early Show with Carson and Dayn

Carson and Dayn

Image created by Canada’s most prominent seller of illegally obtained paint cans, Nick Labbe.

Title: The So Late It’s Early Show with Carson and Dayn
Format: Late night and/or early morning talk show
Hosts: Carson Cistulli and Dayn Perry
Airs: 5/9/15, 2AM EST, Allendale Correctional Institution CCTV

DAYN: Ladies and gentleman, your host: Average-Tits Turdmouth!

[applause]

CARSON: Thank you, thank you. None of you are my wife, so your applause does very little to remedy life’s malaise. I’m your host, Carson Cistulli. We have a great sho…

DAYN: Where the **** did you buy those pants?

CARSON: Uh, so we have a great show. Or at least, it’s a show. Charlie Blackmon of the Colorado Rockies is here.

[applause]

CARSON: And what a week it’s been in the news, huh? Alex Rodriguez just surpassed Willie Mays with his 661st home run. How about that, Dayn?

DAYN: Good for Alex. Maybe time will eventually heal the wound of controversy and we’ll remember A-Rod mostly as the great player he was.

CARSON: As time so often does, I suppose. With each new day, the days before it turn increasingly halcyon. History becomes a highlight reel as all the past’s disappointments, failures, the infinite reasons for self-loathing, and loathing of everything other than the self become gone.

DAYN: Okay.

CARSON: So let’s bring out our guest. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Colorado Rockies outfielder Charlie Blackmon!

[applause]

(As Charlie Blackmon approaches the dais, Cistulli faints.)

CHARLIE: Is he gonna be okay?

DAYN: Eh, probably. So listen, Hot Cakes. Where’s the best place to buy cocaine on the Georgia Tech campus?

CHARLIE: [stares blankly]

DAYN: I think you’ve earned yourself plenty of respect in Colorado over the past year or so. You think you carry enough ******* weight around there to tell those ******** in the front office to bury those purple ******* jerseys?

CHARLIE: Uh, well, the fans seem to like…

(Carson groans, rolls over on his back, and adjusts his glasses.)

CHARLIE: Oh, hey buddy.

CARSON: What happened?

DAYN: I think you saw Charlie and your boner grew so fast it took all the blood out of your head.

(Carson stands and doesn’t dispute Dayn’s claim. He takes his seat in the host’s chair.)

CARSON: So Charlie, could you ever learn to love someone whose middle name is Harrington?

DAYN: This show blows. Hey audience, close your eyes and imagine Karl Rove having sex.

(Charlie locks eyes with Carson, and for a few short seconds they are conjoined by each other’s gaze.)

CARSON: Someday you’re going to die of cancer or heart disease, and in 200 years the word “crunk” will hold no meaning.

CHARLIE: Alright, boys. I’ve got to go, um, grocery shopping.

CARSON: But you’re only in town for two days?

CHARLIE: What? I can’t hear you. Maybe I’m getting an ear infection. Better go to the doctor right away!

DAYN: Perhaps it’s catarrh!

(Retired Col. Lettuce Stephenson, director of programming for Allendale Correctional Institution CCTV, enters the studio and turns out the lights.)

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Notes on the Kimbrel Trade (Happy Opening Day, I Guess)

Isn’t Opening Day great?

Doesn’t each aural occurrence of ball meeting bat in that first game make you increasingly warm from head to toe? Is there anything better than ogling perfectly dressed high socks in a game that actually means something?

Opening Day is perfection. It is the unhindered actualization of idealism. It is Sweet, Sweet Mother Earth forgiving our puny asses for everything we’ve ever done wrong.

Unless you, like me, are a Braves fan. For a Braves fan, 2015’s Opening Day was the worst metaphor come to life. It was waking up from a nightmare to realize our nightmare is real and inches from our stupid, sweaty faces. It was that broken, vengeful Mother Earth arriving on our day of reckoning and shoving tons of radioactive whale turds down our deserving little throats.

It was Craig Kimbrel being traded to the Padres, and then Jason Heyward kicking the shit out of baseball in a Cardinals uniform.

But here’s the thing about the Kimbrel trade: I, uh, sorta like it.

It’s probably more accurate to say that I 75% hate it, but 100% understand it. Within the context of what John Hart is doing, it makes absolute sense, and what John Hart is doing is transforming the Braves from an incidentally good baseball team in 2013 to a purposefully great baseball organization.

Which, that’s wonderful, right? I think so. It seems wonderful now when there are no games on TV and the mind can wander off a few years into the future and imagine the difficulty of choosing your World Series Game 1 starter from a rotation of Julio Teheran, Shelby Miller, Matt Wisler, Mike Foltynewicz, and Max Fried.

But here in reality, there’s Kimbrel, and he’s jogging across the outfield with his permanently rosy red cheeks and his ill-advised chin hair and his dumb San Diego Padres uniform. His new home crowd will cheer and call him their own and shit their collective pants the first time he strikes out the side on nine pitches. Over and over again, he’ll make his way to the mound and do that awesome thing where his arms look like broken airplane wings and the hitter realizes that this dang guy is an out-of-control aircraft and here I am with this tiny, worthless bat. He’ll do it in Padres gold and Padres blue and oh-dear-god he’ll do it in that awful camouflage thing they do. And each time, he’ll be less and less a Brave.

Just like Jason Heyward, and Evan Gattis, and Justin Upton.

It’s good, though, right? Right? That’s all just sentimental crap, and the only thing it really means is John Hart is a way better President of Baseball Operations than I’d be. These moves are punches to the gut, but they’re good, smart punches. The team was crummy in 2014, and the farm system was even crummier. They’re pretty likely to be crummy in 2015 too, but now the farm is loaded.

The Braves are suddenly in the business of asset collection, and they’re doing it pretty darn well. There isn’t a Kris Bryant or Byron Buxton in the organization, but Bryants and Buxtons don’t always pan out. Atlanta’s list of exciting prospects is long enough to hopefully provide a buffer against the attrition that naturally accompanies the transition from good prospect to Major Leaguer. The big league squad, sometime in the next few years, should almost certainly be very good and very young.

Which brings us to Kimbrel.

How valuable was Craig Kimbrel to an ~80 win team that employs Jason Grilli and Jim Johnson? Not super valuable. The Braves are 3-0, but they’re also a punted football in mid-flight. Now, instead of Kimbrel, they have a top pitching prospect, $46 million (and no more Melvin Upton), Cameron Maybin, and the 41st pick in this summer’s draft. That’s, uh, quite a haul. As hard as it blows to see Kimbrel in a Padres uniform, it makes sense. I’m sure we’ll all look back on this trade in a few years and wonder why it stunk.

Until then, well. Drink lots of coffee and subscribe to one-day-at-a-time platitudes.

EDIT: The Braves are now 6-1. Isn’t that cool? I still don’t buy this team as a playoff contender, but baseball is baseball. Chemistry and roster utilization and magic bunts are very real, and sometimes you get the 2005 White Sox or the 2014 Royals. Let’s hope. Baseball is the best.

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Names of Coaches in the 1989 Men’s Division 1 Basketball Tournament, Ranked

In the spirit of March Madness (read: I happened upon an above-average Wikipedia page), behold: a basketball post!

The 1989 NCAA Men’s Division 1 Basketball Tournament was marvelously weird. It is most notable for being won by a team who fired its head coach during the last week of the regular season. That same team featured Glen Rice, who averaged more than 30 points per in six tournament games.

It should, however, be most notable for the names of the involved head coaches. Here they are, ranked. Continue reading

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The Kluber Event: A Quest for Hope in the Void (or, An Exercise of Madness in OOTP)

Kluber Event

 “Corey Kluber is the essential concept and the first truth.” – Albert Camus

Some pitchers are known for their devastating curveballs. Others are known for their facial hair, or the industrial size of their metaphysical cajones, or their goofy leg kick, or their bloody socks. And then there is one – i.e. Corey Kluber – who is best known as a mass of cosmic-level greatness contained at such density he will soon collapse into himself and pull along with him the entire sum of skills employed by the 2014 Cleveland Indians.

The existence of Kluber and the always looming Kluber Event impose upon humanity a question, and the question is this: What do you do when your best player supernovas, quintuplicates himself, absorbs every bit of talent shared by the rest of your club into his now five physical bodies, and thus renders the remainder of your roster as useless as a single jelly donut?

The answer, for now, is found in Out of the Park Baseball. OOTP is a must-have baseball simulation game for many reasons; chiefly among them, the hyperrealism that affords any baseball fan with a computer the opportunity to run what feels like an actual baseball organization. Slightly lesser among them is the hypersurrealism that allows that same baseball fan to debase any moral obligation baseball owes to the laws of the universe. They can clone players, and/or play an entire season in which a team’s hitters do nothing but bunt, and/or begin a season by intentionally walking every single batter until the sun expires.

The game can be unbelievably realistic, but only because the game can be almost literally anything the player wants it to be. In this exercise, the game is a window. The Kluber Event, inevitable here in our own reality, has now occurred in this fake one. What follows is a summary of the 2014 Indians’ quest to win a baseball game with a team of five perfect pitchers and their twenty incomprehensibly pathetic teammates. Continue reading

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Regarding the Wikipedia Page of Sweetbread Bailey

Sweetbread

Regarding the Wikipedia page of Sweetbread Bailey, these four wonderful things:

  1. Abraham Lincoln
  2. “Sweetbread”
  3. or simply “Shortbread”
  4. Brooklyn Robins
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A Farewell to (Impossibly Strong) Arms: Notes on the Evan Gattis Trade

El Oso Blanco

Right now, it is 11:49 PM, Central Standard Time, on January 14, 2015. I am trying to write the words “Evan Gattis is a Houston Astro,” which means I am also hoping desperately for a sudden moment of realization that this version of myself – the one that is trying to write the words “Evan Gattis is a Houston Astro” – has somehow traveled through The Great Wormhole in the Sky into a terrible and false reality. The true reality, which will present itself to me any second now, is one in which the employment of Evan Gattis as an Atlanta Brave is wholly and entirely unchanged.

The trade that sent Gattis to Houston was a good one for Atlanta. The Braves exchanged a player with only one discernible skill (i.e., to hit the literal shit out of a baseball) for three decent-to-good prospects. That the deal makes sense for Atlanta is of very little importance to me. Vastly more important is this: when I woke up this morning, the Atlanta Braves employed a folk hero; when I wake up tomorrow, they will not.

Here is a list of things Evan Gattis might do in 2015, ranked in order of certainty.

  1. Hit a home run
  2. Hit a walk-off home run
  3. Hit a grand slam
  4. Hit a ball in New York that lands in California
  5. Hit a ball in California that lands in New York, and puts a hole on either side of a mountain during the trip

The point of Evan Gattis isn’t that he’s a great baseball player – he’s merely an okay one. The point is that he’s a former hotshot-turned-janitor who stumbled down a path of insobriety and ski lift operation, and ended up hitting Major League home runs with his bare hands and costuming in bear pelts for magazine photo shoots. The love bestowed upon Gattis by his fans isn’t merited by the statistical consequences of his performance, but by the wonderfully strange beauty of the performance itself and the person responsible for it. It doesn’t matter that each home run adds another to his career total, so much as it matters that each home run adds another detail to his tall tale-like narrative.

The result of Evan Gattis is the rare opportunity for this author to distance himself from the usual analytical pros and cons, and embrace the fantastically irrational warmth of unadulterated fanhood. And it’s wonderful. What happens is you jump and cheer and slobber and celebrate each homer hit by the most unlikely hero, bald and without batting gloves. When he goes on the disabled list, you temporarily lose a little hope. When he gets traded, you lose a little more hope, and a little less temporarily.

Farewell to Evan Gattis. Farewell to his trademark thickness. Farewell to J.E. Gattis, the eternal cavalier.

May he hit a thousand home runs from Houston to the moon.

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Hunter Pence, Eventually

Pence Socks

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A Consideration of Candidates for the Position of Atlanta Braves General Manager

Wren

Frank Wren is no longer the general manager of the Atlanta Braves. It’s a bit odd, as general managers tend to have pretty great job security, and Wren’s tenure saw the club make the playoffs three times and sign most of its young, talented core to potentially cut-rate deals well beyond their prime free agency years. He also signed Dan Uggla and B.J. Upton, though, so maybe it isn’t odd.

With Wren’s departure, the team needs a new general manager. The most likely scenario favors current interim GM John Hart. Another option, and one I fully endorse, is John Coppolella. Dayton Moore, currently the general manager of the Kansas City Royals and Grand Harbinger of My Downward Spiral Into Alcoholism, is a deformed buzzard who lives in my brain and circles idly around each and every thought about the current job opening.

Fun.

Hart and Coppolella are good candidates. Dayton Moore is a bad one. The five listed below are neither good, nor bad, nor realistic, but I wrote about them anyhow.

John Schuerholz

  1. Hire Schuerholz
  2. Sell the team to Ted Turner
  3. Have Tom Glavine, John Smoltz, and David Justice
  4. Draft Chipper Jones
  5. Acquire Greg Maddux from the Cubs, and Fred McGriff from the Padres
  6. Acquire Marquis Grissom from the Montreal Expos
  7. Win the 1995 World Series

Outkast

My imagination contains zero situations in which the Atlanta Braves would not benefit from the acquisition of space futuristic type things.

This digitally illustrated desk placard

THE General Manager

This digitally illustrated desk placard (which the author has titled “THE General Manager.jpg”, and stored neatly in a desktop folder full of ignorant shit), is not just any general manager. Rather, said placard is *the* general manager.

Jeb Lund

Congratulations to @Mobute on his new job as general manager of the Atlanta Braves.

Kevin Towers

Because why the shit not? ‘Sports’ as the practice of ridiculously well salaried idiots enthusiastically competing against one another within the boundaries of absurd man-made rules is capital-L Lame. The best ‘sports’ is the one which creeps its stupid unnecessary hand into your very real, very necessary human soul and twists it into a confused mess of existential and moral questioning. Is it worth rooting for your favorite team even if your favorite team stands for everything you hate? There you go, sports. Keep asking the tough ones.

I don’t like Kevin Towers. I think he’s an insufferable dick. Kevin Towers as the general manager of my favorite sports team is the stuff dreams are made of.

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J.E. Gattis and the Quest for Strength

J.E. Gattis Banner

J.E. Gattis went to the woods, but not because he wished to live deliberately. That is something a transcendentalist poet would do, and the only thing J.E. Gattis hates more than a transcendentalist poet is every other type of poet.

“Poetry is a milksop’s work,” Gattis is known to say, usually just before shaping the least ductile of precious metals into phallic monuments to himself. He once found himself in an argument with Stéphane Mallarmé about the existence of France, after which Mellarmé found himself punched into outer space.

J.E. Gattis

So J.E. Gattis went to the woods. He was accompanied by a well-known circus strongman whose career appeared suddenly in jeopardy following a drunken brawl (v. Gattis) which cost him all of the right shoulder blade and half his left. Their mission was to find strength, and the immediate destination was an undercroft which was long-forgotten and now the home of a disgraced Carmelite monk. The discalced friar was understood to be the wisest in the world, but he was recently fired when he showed up to work in a good-as-new pair of Reebok tennis shoes.

“Hey holy man, where does a never-ending badass who gallivants through all of time and space in search of fine spirits and recently divorced women find strength?” Gattis was already growing impatient.

“What sort of strength do you seek, young man? The spiritual? The physical?” The friar spoke without facing his guests. “The strength, perhaps, of a lover?”

Gattis scoffed, and from his place in the grotto, he seduced and pleased the Queen of Spain. “I only need as much as it takes for this bald cartoon of a man to lift hollowed rods over his head.”

The friar quickly replied, “You’re in the wrong place, kiddo. The kind of strength you seek is not found here in the Earth’s roots. It is, rather, found in the clouds.”

“Sit tight, you fat-armed dolt,” Gattis said to the strongman, just before setting off on a solo journey to the apex of Chomolungma.

At the mountain’s peak, our protagonist met the ghost of Songtsän Gampo, founder of the Tibetan Empire. When Gattis asked the ancient ruler for the strength, he was instructed to return to the ground. The strength would not be found in the clouds.

So Gattis did return to the ground, and then down to the monk’s room below it. From the tomb, he dragged the strongman up and back into the woods. It had been three whole hours since Gattis’ last proper meal, and eternity’s Gentleman was overcome by hunger. The search was over, and so it was replaced by a new search for a decent chicken sandwich.

Finished with the quest for strength, and emptied of remorse re: the strongman’s shoulder blades, Gattis pulled one aged tree up from its roots, and then another. After fashioning the two trees into good-sized baseball bat, he swatted the strongman into orbit alongside the French poet, then excused himself from the woods for a high stakes game of rounders.

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The Fifty-First Section of Whitman’s Song of Myself, Slightly Amended to Include Jumbo Diaz of the Cincinnati Reds

Jumbo Whitman

The past and present wilt—I have fill’d them, emptied them.
And proceed to fill my next fold of the future.
Listener up there! what have you to confide to me?
Look in my face while I snuff the sidle of evening,
(Talk honestly, no one else hears you, and I stay only a minute longer.)
Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am Jumbo, I contain multitudes.)
I concentrate toward them that are nigh, I wait on the door-slab.
Who has done his day’s work? who will soonest be through with his supper? 
Who wishes to walk with me?
Will you speak before I am gone? will you prove already too late?

Multitudes are what Jumbo Diaz contains. About this I am certain.

Now, what is it which lives within said multitudes? This is a more questionable topic.

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