Meet The CDP At Geek.Kon!

Meet The CDP At Geek.Kon!

On Saturday, October 6, a nagging question will be answered once and for all: Who is the best Guitar Hero player in the Midwest? Is it a guy? Is it a girl? Is it that one Asian kid that lives at the arcade and plays Tekken 4 with his eyes closed?

Well, I believe that it might be me, which is why I’ll be attending Madison’s first annual Geek.Kon and staking my claim to the title of Guitar Hero II Champion. The tournament will run from 10am to 1pm on Saturday, and that’s where you’ll be able to find me, staring down my competition and filming footage for an upcoming documentary on the entire convention. They expect to have about 1000 people attending, so there should be no shortage of entertainment in the people-watching department.

The rest of the convention seems pretty much standard fare for a sci-fi/anime gathering. And while 99.85% of that stuff freaks me right the hell out (cosplay, schoolgirls, furries, etc.), I fully intend to wade into the crowd and emerge victorious, clutching the hollowed-out skulls of the 15 other souls who dare try defeat me. Pity them, for they did not know what to expect.

I’m in need of both an entourage and a cheering section for the tournament, which is where you come in. If you’re coming to Geek.Kon or plan on being in the Madison area on October 6, please stop in, say hello and root for the CDP. I’ll be handing out free swag and you’ll get to be in my movie! Furthermore, you’ll see history being made when I hoist my trophy over my head and declare myself the best virtual shredder in the tri-state area. Afterwards, drinks are on me. I currently have about 8 people confirmed for my posse, but there can always be more. Admission is FREE, by the way.

Sound off in the comments section and wish me luck; I’ve got practicing to do, and a book to complete.

I’m Not Gonna Teach Your Boyfriend How To Dance With You.

There's something in my eye.

Every once in a great while, the stars in the universe seem to line up in such a way that karma and fate smile kindly upon your being, blessing you with the impossible gift of a dream come true. This could come in the form of a job promotion, a new and rewarding relationship, or something as simple as a free latte at Starbucks. Whatever the case, you mustn’t let these moments pass you by.

Personally, my dreams never come true, and it’s probably a good idea that they don’t. If I were to suddenly find myself locked in a room filled with pink cotton candy, miles of plush, down comforters and my beautiful Oral & Interpersonal Speech teacher from college, I’m quite certain I’d act much differently than I do in my sleep. In fact, I think I’d call the cops.

You are the one that I've been dreaming of.
(This is not the price we bought the car for. Ignore that.)

Nope, today’s post is focusing more on the dreams and aspirations of the Missus. About a year-and-a-half ago, her Taurus was totalled in a rear-ending that left her with whiplash, weekly medical visits and no car to drive. For one reason or another, she didn’t find it endearing to have me drive her to work every day. It might have had something to do with my tendancy to sing at peak volume and drum the steering wheel for 22 straight minutes, but that’s for the divorce court to decide.

Sure, she eventually got the fantastic Ford Focus, but she had always felt like she was driving someone elses’ car. She missed having a vehicle with personality; an attachment of herself, in a way. In a perfect world, she’d be able to buy whatever car she wanted, and when it came to fantasy car choices, there was only one that the Missus has ever longed for.

The 2002 Mini Cooper.

One, I'm biting my tongue.
(Contrast White top with a sunroof, comfy back seats and a trunk that you can actually put stuff in.)

The Missus is a MINI lover (hey, who isn’t?), but the 2002 was her model of choice. Mainly, because this was the only year they manufactured it with the color ‘Silk Green.’ The BMW racing sprite boasts a plethora of stylish glosses and fixtures, but Silk Green was the only color she had ever wanted.

When she was bored, the Missus would go onto the official MINI web site and compile her dream car. Silk Green, chrome package, winter package, heated seats, the works. She did this for years, and was prescribed several medications to stop the addiction. I kept trying to explain to her that it was an unhealthy obsession. Nobody ever gets what they want in life. Nobody gets their dream car. Nobody.

Dance! Dance! Dance! Dance!
(It’s built like a cross between a tank and a go-kart. The crash safety is through the roof.)

Three weeks ago, we were driving home from the mall, when we saw it. A Mini Cooper with the same date, color and exact packages that the Missus had been pining for all this time. The ‘For Sale’ sign was in the window, and it was parked no less than 200 yards from our house. It was as if the fantasy car that she created online had come to life, drove all the way to CDP Headquarters and plopped itself down in our driveway. We were absolutely shocked.

Less than three days later, it was ours. These moments are fleeting, and must be taken advantage of when they arrive. The mere thought of someone else driving the car that she had created was not an option. They wouldn’t love it like she could. They simply wouldn’t understand.

What can I do?
(Yes, I will be attempting to get it up to 150mph. Don’t even bother trying to stop me.)

We sold the Focus last week, and picked up this bad boy shortly thereafter, all at a price that the Missus was more than willing to afford. The standing agreement is that I get to drive it to work at least three Fridays a month. The pessimist in me is concerned that Karma might be screwing with us; causing the car to break down after two hours of driving. We did our homework, however, and the vehicle is tip-top and immaculately maintained. I couldn’t ask for a 2002 car in better shape.

So, the Missus’ dream has come true, and that’s a wonderful thing. As for my own dreams, I’m still trying to track down my Speech teacher’s phone number.

That pretty much wraps it up. We have a very busy October ahead of us. The Missus is heading to Chicago on Saturday while me and Ben shoot footage for our documentary, we’re all taking the MINI up to Oshkosh on Sunday to visit the EAA, I have a Guitar Hero tournament to attend/win on October 6-7, our Pub Quiz trivia titles must be defended on October 8, a trip to beautiful Door County is calling from October 12-14, me and Ben will be actors in a haunted house on October 18, I’ll be hitting Milwaukee for a concert on October 22, Architecture In Helsinki rocks Madison on the 23rd, follwed by yet another concert in Chicago on the 24th, Guitar Hero III is released on October 28, and this will all culminate with a Halloween party on the 31st and the long-awaited release of the CDP Book. In amongst all of this, I need to record about 20 hours of new television a week and find the time to watch all of it. Unreal.

I don’t how I’ll be able to do everything, but I do know how I’ll be getting there. Sound off in the comments section and enjoy your weekend.

(PS – As far as I’m concerned, the Nationwide Mix-Tape Trade is over. I’m through thinking about it, and I’m moving on with my next project.)

The Milwaukee Brewers Want Me To Kill Myself.

I Hate Myself And Want To Die.
(Wow, this photo looks like crap. Thanks, photo compression!)

Those who claim that baseball is boring and emotionless have obviously never watched a game that had playoff implications. More than likely, these people are also Marlins fans.

Next to soccer (which, let’s face it, sucks), there is no sport more emotionally draining than baseball. While football and basketball have rapid ups and downs, wild mood swings and other various forms of mental subterfuge, an epic-yet-losing game of baseball will suck the very will to live right out of you. The methodical pacing of the game lulls you into a false sense of security, then curb-kicks your teeth out with one crack of the bat. When a football game is down to one second, chances are that it’s all over. In baseball, it ain’t over until the final pitch, and even then, they just might have to play until Christmas to break the tie.

Watching a baseball game melt in front of your eyes is like getting a call that your pet was just hit by a car. The weight in your gut makes you feel like you don’t want to live anymore; everything was going so well up to that point. If losing a last-second basketball game is like a shotgun blast to the head, losing a last-second baseball game is like having your wenis carved up with a zesting tool. It’s never over fast enough, and you probably won’t even get the satisfaction of dying. With each passing day on the schedule, it’s just another step closer to your team’s ultimate doom, and there’s nothing you can do but close your eyes, hold someone’s hand, and cry until your wife makes you a salad to quell the pain. Oh, and a glass of wine would be great. Thanks.

If I sound melodramatic, it’s because I’m currently in a huge depression onset by the recent behavior of a certain Milwaukee Brewers franchise. If you’re just catching up, the Brewers had been in sole possession of first place in their division for the bulk of the season, leading by 8.5 games at one point. Now, with 5 games left to play, they are 2 games out of the lead and headed for the 25th straight year without a playoff appearance. What seemed like destiny has once again fizzled and flickered out over the course of the summer. I mean, if we can’t make that playoffs with both the league MVP (Fielder) and the Rookie of the Year (Braun), how can we ever?

Furthermore, when did the Cubs start winning games? Why are they so damn good, all of a sudden? When did they stop being a punchline in Jay Leno monologues? What is happening to the world I used to know?

Well, at least I have the satisfaction of enjoying my currently-overachieving Green Bay Packers. Sure, my wife thinks that Brett Favre is paying the opposing teams off so he’ll look good this season (possible, but not very probable), but hey, I’ll take what I can get. Hell, even if they lose the next 13 games, Mike McCarthy gets arrested for beating his kids and Donald Driver shows up on To Catch A Predator with wine coolers and a wheel of condoms, I’ll still think that they did better this year than they were supposed to.

Also remember that the Boston Red Sox, my Official Favorite Baseball Team, clinched themselves a playoff spot and should be losing to the Yankees right about……now.

Please explain this to me. Why do I invest so much of my personality and happiness in people that have no idea I exist? Why do I put emotional worth and schedule my life around wealthy athletes that couldn’t care less what city they’re playing for? In an organization where only one team out of 30 or so will win each year, doesn’t it make more statistical sense to merely be a fan of the sport itself and enjoy every victory by every team? Why must boundaries and state lines get involved?

Clearly, this is what ‘loser talk’ sounds like. I’m currently in the ‘bargaining’ stage of the grief process, and I’ve been there for most of the summer.

Dude, just driving through Milwaukee on Monday night pissed me off. I was screaming at random passerby, vowing revenge and swearing that I would never return to the city that has caused me so much pain. Due to constant road construction, a 60 mile drive took three hours. I didn’t think that was even possible until I experienced it first-hand; I had to stop at a gas station to shave halfway through.

I don’t know what the deal is with that city, but it needs to get its collective crap together and stop closing three lanes of traffic during a baseball game that has 80,000 spectators. If 50,000 cars leave Milwaukee at an average speed of 5 miles an hour for a total average distance of 80 miles, that theoretically means the last car in line will never get home. Ever. They will age, wither and eventually die in their cars, as orange barrels continue to block perfectly usable and uninhabited freeway lanes.

When your favorite team sucks from the get-go, it doesn’t bother you. Your defense mechanism kicks in, you graciously accept the fact that your team doesn’t have a chance, and the whole thing ceases to bother you for the season. When your once beloved team goes sour and betrays you, however, things get significantly more ugly.

Look at it in relationship terms. If you have a partner that makes no excuses about their irritating personality, lackluster fashion sense and non-existent diet, it’s not going to bother you too much when they talk too loud, wear mis-matched clothes and eat all day. You’ll get over it, or you’ll simply find another person to be happy with. However, when the sparkling, sexy and slim person-of-your-dreams starts slowly deteriorating into an embarrassing, annoying lump, it’s going to hurt you for a long, long time. All this time wasted, and for what?

So, to the Milwaukee Brewers, I have one simple request for you. Win out the remainder of the season. It’s the least you can do, and if it turns out to be not enough, I’ll try to understand and heal. Your fans don’t care if you get swept in the playoffs, we just want to be invited.

TOMORROW: THE MISSUS’ CAR IS FINALLY REVEALED.

Facebook Funnies! (Volume 4.)

Facebook Funnies!

Hello, and welcome to another hilarious installment of ‘Facebook Funnies,’ where we get to peek into the personal lives of Facebook users by simply keeping an eye on the Mini-Feed. It’s wacky! It’s hilarious! It’s Facebook Funnies!

Today’s Facebook Funny comes to us from ‘Ashley.’ This was her updated mini-feed on Friday morning:

“Ashley removed “swing” from her favorite music.”

Haven’t we all, Ashley…haven’t we all…

Here’s one more, from ‘Marshall:’

Marshall removed “staying up all night when I get the chance” from his interests.
Again, haven’t we all?

Thanks for stopping by, and stay tuned for the next installment of Facebook Funnies!

Volume 3.
Volume 2.
Volume 1.

FRIDAY: THE MISSUS’ NEW CAR IS REVEALED.

Ken – By Request Only – The Complete Story.

Ken - By Request Only.

If you’re not familiar with the legend of ‘Ken’ by now, you’re about to be. The album cover widely considered to be the ‘Worst Of All-Time’ has been an endless source of humor to hipsters like myself, cementing its place in Internet Infamy by being featured in every ‘Wost Album Cover’ list and book on the planet.

When the CDP compiled our own list of the Worst Album Covers Of All-Time, By Request Only came in at #2. It was one of our most popular posts ever, and did nothing but spread the Internet Phenomenon that was Ken.

Who was this guy? What was on the record? Was it even a real record? These were the questions that filled message board threads for years, as outsider music collectors and Internet historians debated the merits of this one and only photograph. Mere sleeves of this record were said to be going for big money on eBay. Surely, it was too good to be true. Just a little too nostalgic, just a little too funny, perhaps. People wanted their hands on this album, but nobody even knew if it actually existed.

Until now.

Snopes, the Internet’s premiere Urban Legend website, has finally cracked the mystery of By Request Only, actually tracking down Ken himself for the straight dope. Besides Snopes, I’m confident that the CDP is currently the only place on the Internet where you can see the entire story of Ken from beginning to end.

First off, this album is real. The first big clue came when the album, vinyl and all, went up on eBay and sold for $150. This gave the world their first look at the back cover of the album, along with the actual record itself.

Ken!Ken!

Finally being able to see the back cover of By Request Only opened the floodgates of information. We got a track listing, an idea of the musical genre it entailed (Christian), a personal message from Ken himself, a last name (Snyder) and full contact information! Things were going well for us Internet investigators.

The next step, of course, was to break the fourth wall and actually track this guy down. Did Ken know that he was an Internet Celebrity? Was he aware that By Request Only was making big bucks on eBay and considered the worst album cover of all-time?

After some more digging, a Ken Snyder who matched the description and location of the album recording was linked to a church in Sheldon, Iowa, along with an updated photograph and contact information!

Ken!

Surely, this was the same man. Now, not only did we know that the album was real, we also knew that Ken was still alive and well, spreading his message of faith throughout the Bible Belt. This was a very good thing.

Eventually, someone had the balls to make the phone call, and contact was made. Here’s the Snopes entry on said conversation:

“Talked with Ken, he said he was somewhat aware of the notoriety, but was surprised to hear about the eBay auction and wanted a link. He hadn’t received any calls about it, hopefully I didn’t start anything, he’s a really nice guy.”

Contact with Ken! The Internet truly is an amazing thing.

After this conversation with Ken, he was happy to know that people were still interested in his music, and actually put up the LAST 4 COPIES OF BY REQUEST ONLY THAT HE HAD. In the eBay auctions, he actually put ‘Worst Album Cover’ in the title, so it’s clear that the man has a very good sense of humor about this. In fact, shortly after finding out this news, Ken’s daughter posted on the Snopes board and offered this information:

“Hey, I’m Ken’s daughter. Just thought you would like to know my dad has loved reading these sites about him. That record is from 1976. He used to travel and sing all over the U.S., and that was one of his records he sold. He only has about 4 left now, decided ‘why not try selling them if people are actually interested in buying them?’ He called me up immediately after he got a call saying that one of you had told him his record sold on eBay. He knew the album cover was under “Worst Album Cover” but didn’t realize he was the talk of people online. Crazyness!”

So, that pretty much brings everyone up to speed. The album is real, Ken is real (with a great sense of humor), and he’s selling off the last 4 copies of By Request Only known to exist. He’s even going to sign them! I love it when mysteries like this end with happy endings, although I am a bit sad that the Internet has halted yet another great Urban Legend.

Ken – By Request Only. Solved.

You should also know that I’m getting myself a copy, and I don’t care the price. I’m currently the highest bidder on one of the auctions that ends tomorrow. I’ll tell you how I did when it’s over.

Corn Maze 3: The Revenge Of The Cob.

We All Scream For Cobs.

This weekend, I (along with the Missus, Benjamin & Sherry) headed out to the Treinen Farms Corn Maze for the third time in three years. If you remember from our first venture to Lodi, Wisconsin, a good time was guaranteed to be had by all.

Before venturing into the maze itself, I helped myself to a pumpkin.

Ripe For The Slingshotting.

This was the earliest in the year we had attended the maze, so the crowd was light, the weather was beautiful and the corn was sky-high. For all the work that the Treinen Farm staff puts into their production every year, I certainly hope that they rake in the cash every Autumn. Judging by all of the employees and custom-made t-shirts, I’d venture that they’re doing just fine for themselves.

Rope Tied Down On A Leaky Boat.

Complete with a pumpkin slingshot, multiple hayrides, a funhouse for the kids and animals galore, spending a day at the farm is well worth the $7.50 admission. Having been raised on a dairy farm for my entire childhood, I can assure you that they’re normally not this awesome. In fact, the gift of simply not being a double-amputee was all the thanks I needed for my years of hard work.

The Smallest Things Make Me Angry.

My team is always very businesslike when traversing the maze. We had a plan, we had a mission, and failure wasn’t an option. We agreed upon on a distress call (donkey in heat), did some chest-bumps and we were on our way.

And We'll Be On Our Way.

It was almost not fun. I think we knocked the maze out in record time this year, to the point where Ben and Sherry went back in to retrieve some bonus items off of the beaten trail path. While they bent the Corn Maze over a sawhorse and repeatedly scarred it for life, me and the Missus tried to catch ourselves a free-range chicken, Rocky-style. I attempted to explain that catching a chicken really was impossible, but it didn’t stop her from trying. She slept well that night.

At Midnight, I Turn Back Into An Asshole.

I experienced a huge downer when I discovered that the famed Pumpkin Slingshot was not yet ready for public enjoyment. Having previously gone 1 for 2 in this event, I had been looking forward to the rubber match all week. Every time I closed my eyes, I fantasized about my hand-picked gourd sailing hundreds of feet through the air, but I guess it was all for naught. I shall get my revenge in 2008.

A Storm Is Brewing, Better Stay Awesome.

We’ll be back again, but not soon enough. Sound off in the comments section and enjoy your Monday.