Monthly Archives: July 2010

James Toney and MMA

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After seeing a live chat today (, I have a better appreciation for him. Here’s a quote from that chat:

Everybody has this misconception I don’t like MMA. I love MMA. I love Georges St. Pierre, I love Rich Franklin, I like BJ Penn, I like Anderson Silva, Rampage Jackson, Rashad Evans, I like a ton of these guys. I don’t have a problem with those dudes. MMA is a great sport.

Turns out that Toney isn’t arrogant because he disrepects MMA; he is just full of himself. UFC 118 is gonna be fun to watch.

Category: UFC

Goodbye, Captain Phil.

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Like many others, my wife and I were glued to the TV on Tuesday night to watch the Deadliest Catch episode. Albeit taped on our DVR, we watched the show in between the east and west coast feeds.

This episode held tremendous interest for me and m’girl as this was the episode when Captain Phil passed away.

For those not familiar with the show, the Deadliest Catch allows viewers to watch several fishing boats during crab season in the Bering Sea off the Alaskan coast. Phil Harris was captain of the Cornelia Marie boat. His two sons, Jake and Josh, also work on the boat. They have been on this show for all 6 seasons; fans of the show have watched a lot of life on the Cornelia Marie.

Phil has had several health issues over the past couple of years; his illness and subsequent demise were not totally unexpected. The show is taped during the winter, and aired in the summer after Discovery Channel has completed editing the footage taken by the camera operators on all of the ships (5 of them). When Phil passed away on February 9, the news was made public even though the show informing viewers of his death would not air until 5 months later.

M’girl and I found out about Phil’s passing within a day or two of February 9. Discovery had hyped this week’s episode right after last week’s episode completed. We knew what was going to happen, but did not let that stop us from shedding tears. In fact, this show was emotionally draining to watch all season because we knew the end result while watching all of the drama unfold.

At the beginning of the season, Jake was sent to another boat to get experience working for another captain that wasn’t his dad. He got back on the Cornelia Marie by strapping on a survival suit, jumping off the Northwestern and letting the Cornelia Marie crew fish him out of the frigid Bering Sea.

Jake continued to command the spotlight when Phil caught his son stealing his pain pills (can’t remember which drug). A huge fight ensued with Phil telling Jake that when the ship docked he needed to leave, and proclaiming that “I don’t ever want to see you again!” After Jake pledging to check into rehab, they (thankfully) made up.

Knowing that Phil would be gone within weeks or even days make scenes like this fight hard to watch.

This week’s episode showed more of the struggle between Phil’s sons. After Phil seems to have stabilized, Jake heads off to rehab. The hospital then calls Josh saying his dad has taken a turn, and he needs to head back to the hospital right away. The episode ends with the audio of Josh leaving a voice mail for Jake informing him  “we lost dad.”

Our reaction to this drama brings a question to my mind: why? Why were we moved to tears over someone we did not really know? When we cry over someone’s passing, the normal reason is because there was a relationship. There was no relationship between us and Phil; he never met us. And if it wasn’t for the show, we wouldn’t have known or cared about a fishing boat’s captain that passed away several thousand miles from our home in Arizona.

However, reality shows like the Deadliest Catch allow viewers to become emotionally involved with the subjects of the program. We share the frustrations, triumphs and tragedies of our favorite actors.

Is this good or bad? Or neither? Should we be concerned about how we react to drama surrounding celebrities? I am sure some would say this level of emotional involvement is not healthy because there is no relationship.

We have a tremendous amount of freedom. Whether you identify yourself as an American citizen, a Christian, or something else, if you are reading this blog you have more freedom than millions of other humans oppressed by government or lack of technology. The last thing I want to do is to restrict that freedom because of a moral judgement.

However, I will say this: our freedom should not be abused. Enjoying a reality show is not wrong in and of itself. But I want to be careful to ensure the majority of my time and energy is spent on things that matter. I am glad that I have opportunities to become involved with activities that allow me to make an impact on others, both inside and outside of my family. After all, a television show should never be a substitute for building relationships in life that matter.

That being said, I am glad I got to know a little bit about the life of Phil Harris, Captain of the Cornelia Marie. Yeah, you were a grumpy old bear at times, and you ingested way too much tobacco, caffeine, and alcohol. But you worked your butt off, and loved your sons in a way that leaves them with a legacy they will never forget.

Phil, I hope I get to see you in heaven. When I get there, I fully expect you to be in the wheelhouse of a crab boat pulling in a lot of opies. Godspeed.

Category: Television

Bountiful Baskets

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We just got back from our Bountiful Baskets pickup. For $15, we got:

  • 9 nectarines
  • 8 bananas
  • a huge head of romaine lettuce
  • a bunch of white asparagus
  • 2 lbs of seedless green grapes
  • a pint of blueberries
  • 6 ears of corn
  • a pint of cherry tomatoes
  • 3 oranges
  • 3 small yellow squashes
  • 2 green bell peppers

All for $15, and they keep smaller farmers in business. If you’re in the Phoenix area, check ’em out at and tell ’em Bubba sent ya. No, they don’t know me. But I think it would be funny.

Category: Shopping

UFC 116: Pre-event thoughts

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Dana White has been both lauded and criticized for the way he promotes the UFC. However, he stated in an interview that people have been waiting for years to see a heavyweight title bout with the potential that Lesnar/Carwin carries.

Like him or hate him, he is exactly right.

I grew up watching boxing, and remember watching some of the fights with my dad. It wasn’t my favorite sport at the time but I enjoyed the contests, and looked forward to some of them. Sugar Ray Leonard, Ray “Boom-Boom” Mancini, and some other fighters I can’t remember right now put on some impressive bouts.

However, boxing has become irrelevant. I can’t remember knowing or actively caring about a boxing match. Outta sight, outta mind. Dana is making sure this fate doesn’t happen to the UFC anytime soon.

Brock Lesnar and Shane Carwin are two trains with heavy locomotives on the same track heading toward each other at 100 miles per hour. You know the collision is gonna happen, and you can’t wait to see which train is left standing. OK, maybe you aren’t that keyed up about it. But if you’re a UFC fan, a boxing fan, or even a mild sporting fan…the more you  know about this fight, the more you are anticipating it.

For those of you that do not already know, Brock Lesnar is a former WWE wrestler that switched to MMA in 2007. Because of his size and quickness, Lesnar managed to fight for (and win) the UFC Heavyweight Title in his fourth MMA fight. Some were upset because Lesnar got a title fight so quickly, and others (myself included) are not cheering for him because of his brash, often offensive outbursts about his opponent.

Most UFC fighters have great respect for their opponents, and in a world often short of true sportsmanship these fighters have gained a lot of followers. Brock, however, has chosen a different road. Because of his antics, he doesn’t garner as much respect as maybe he should.

Say what you want about the man, but his ability, athleticism and desire cannot be questioned. The improvement in Brock’s game has been tremendous, and if he loses tonight at UFC 116 it will not be from lack of training.

Shane Carwin, on the other hand, is well-spoken, well-mannered, and appears to be a true sportsman. Not only has he won all 12 of his fights, but every fight has ended with plenty of time left in the first round.

The train wreck created by these two men is gonna be intense.

Some other things you need to know about this fight:

  • Brock is fighting for the first time in about a year due to a severe bout of diverticulitis. Ring rust may be a factor.
  • While Lesnar looks like a huge beast (and he is), Carwin’s glove size is bigger.
  • Lesnar won the NCAA Division I wrestling championship in 2000. Carwin won the NCAA Division II wrestling championship the year before. Lesnar is greatly downplaying Carwin’s Division II championship. While I am sure there is a difference between the two in skill levels, I am not sure it is going to matter in 2010. Remember when Lesnar got caught in a heel hook from Frank Mir? A world-class wrestler on top of his game would never have been caught in that hold.
  • Lesnar is a favorite right now in Vegas (odds -145/+125 as of right now) but has lost ground over the past month when he was as high as -200 (

I am calling this one for Carwin. Mostly because I want him to win, but also because I believe his style is much more controlled than Lesnar’s. Brock will come at you like a raging bull but Shane has been very patient and methodical in his victories. Funny to say that about a guy that hasn’t needed any more than one round to put away his opponents.

If you don’t wanna drop the money on PPV ($40+), find a sports bar that will show the fight. BWW and Hooters usually shows UFC fights.

We are visiting some of my wife’s friends from school right now…so not sure how we are going to catch the fights. If we don’t see them tonight, we will catch it later from home.

If you have never seen the UFC or haven’t seen it for years, this is the fight to catch.

Category: UFC