An Early Easter at Steve's Place

I'm a big fan of Steve Pavlina's Personal Development Blog. It's right over there in the blogroll, see?

Lately Steve has been unnerving some readers by pooh-poohing the scientific method and other heresies against the Church of Objective Reality. They wonder what happened to the Steve who wrote practical articles like How To Give Up Coffee and How To Become An Early Riser, but then veered into topics such as polyphasic sleep and intention-manifestation model of development.

I think he dropped a hint at what's going on in his recent post Musings on Reality, the Scientific Method, and the Cure for Dandruff, with this particular passage:

[Reader Question] Please stop. You're frightening me.

[Steve's Response] I'm afraid I can't do that...

Where have we heard that before?

Nice one, Steve!

posted by Mike at 10:02 AM 0 comments


Wrath of the Football Gods

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Green Bay Packer Fans: Do you get the feeling the Pack is cursed this year?

I have good news and bad news for you.

The bad news is that the team IS cursed.

The good news is that the curse could end as soon as 2007.

The story begins a few years ago when the plans were finalized for the Lambeau Field renovation.

"Vince, we're getting some disturbing information about the plans for the Lambeau renovation."

"What do mean, Curly?"

"Well, we all agree that the team needed to upgrade the facilities to stay competitive in the league, but I think Harlan and Sherman are going overboard."

"In what way?"

"A 1.6 Million square foot locker room, for starters..."

"One point six MILLION square feet!? That's something like forty acres! What could possible take up that much space?"

"I don't know, Vince. But our first stadium was a lot smaller than that."

"We'd better go down and have a look."

"What's this?"

"A football shaped locker room with lights in the shape of football laces!?! This isn't a #^$ country club!"

"A locker room is a place for warriors to dress for battle, not primp for the prom!"

"And are those cherry wood lockers? If you slam your helmet into one of those you're going to send splinters everywhere! And that wood could stain your false teeth!"

"Still, it doesn't look like 1.6 Million square feet. What else are they planning?"

"Is that an indoor basketball court?"

"And they've got racquetball courts, too!"

"Those multimillionaire players can't afford a membership at the Y?"

"Those boys ought to be out in the fresh air if they want to get a workout!"

"What else is on the drawing board?"

"There's the steam room, and it looks like 9 coaches' auditoriums..."

"Nine coaches' auditoriums? Whatever happened to gathering the team around the old chalkboard to draw up plays? I know Favre would go for that."

"I wonder what Halas would think of all this..."

"I'd think your fans are lucky they can still tailgate! Our new place is going to have all underground parking, which doesn't exactly lend itself to barbequeing!!"

"Papa Bear! How'd you get up here?"

"Very funny, Vince! Is that the gratitude I get
after bailing out your 'storied franchise'?"

"Just kidding with you, George!"

"I don't like what I'm seeing here. At least they didn't include a team beauty salon. But they're turning this place from a stadium teams used to fear into the Green and Gold Resort and Day Spa. Those guys are about this far away from invoking my wrath!"

Time passes...

"That's the last straw!!"


"See that little plaque in the middle there?
It marks the fact that we are standing in Harlan Plaza!"

"But isn't he still alive?"

"Very much so, but he and Sherman are going to get the Moses treatment for all this. They'll never get to the Promised Land of football. In fact, they'll never win another playoff game!"

January 4, 2003

Atlanta Falcons 27, Packers 7

The first playoff loss by the Packers at Lambeau Field.

"Better stock up on the antacids, Mike. That's just a preview of things to come..."

Opening Day 2003

"I love the new Lambeau!!!"

Minnesota 30, Packers 25

"That's just wrong!"

January 4, 2004

Packers 33, Seahawks 27

"I know. I know. But I had to make an exception. Holmgren made Super Bowl XXXII all about him, and lost the game. That was far worse than what these guys have done!"

"You got that right!"

January 11, 2004

Philadelphia Eagles 20, Packers 17

Admit it Packers fans; this one still hurts. Fourth and one with the game on the line and Sherman punts when the Eagles haven't stopped Green the entire second half?!?

"Sometimes you don't need a curse to lose ignominiously.

But we're not done yet."

January 9, 2005

Minnesota Viqueens 31, Packers 17

The ultimate insult: a playoff loss to Randy Moss and Co. at home!

So there you have it, Packers fans. The whole sad story.

But as I said, the good news is that Bob Harlan is scheduled to retire at the end of the of the 2006 season.

As for Mike Sherman, only time will tell.

Brett Favre has announced that he will only stay if Sherman is coach, so this is probably the only Favre that will be in uniform for the Packers' next playoff victory at Lambeau.

Don't worry fans, the glory days will return!

posted by Mike at 7:11 PM 1 comments


Let's Run It Up the Flagpole and See Who Salutes

As 80's entertainment dynamo Mr. T would say: "I pity the advertising fool that landed the Charmin Fresh Mates account". It was only a matter of time before some brainstorming session at P&G produced the bright idea of adult baby wipes. (Trying to increase total lifetime value of the customer and all.)

Naturally, the television campaign would need to leverage that hot bear-in-the-woods brand.

But of course, the bears have spent years extolling the virtues of toilet paper, so they couldn't very well just come out and tell us they'd been fooling us all this time with an inferior product (especially since they don't talk).

What to do? What to do?

Then Brady came up with the idea of another friendly woodland creature introducing the wipes to the bears. After several focus groups, the team settled on a duck.

NOTE: Since the real Charmin duck has yet to grace the internet with his presence, we had to use a stand-in.

Unfortunately, the initial versions of the commercial didn't test well. People who had spent all of their lives wiping their posteriors with soft paper tissue needed more than a duck and a bear to change that habit. Showing actual Klingons flying around Uranus was out of the question, but how could the spot demonstrate the superior cleaning power of the wipes? The team struggled for weeks, and then the answer came as if by Providence.

Silberberg was playing with a new toothpaste dispenser in an adjoining cubicle when he accidentally squashed it and smeared the stuff all over the back of his hand. He started rummaging around for something to clean it off. A handy Kleenex did a poor job, but when Laves handed him one of the wipes - VOILA! - a clean, fresh smelling hand! A bright light appeared over the cube, accompanied by an angel choir, a light bulb went on, and the problem was solved!!

Unfortunately, the concept didn't translate perfectly to a 30-second spot. A family member watching the commercial the other night remarked that the real message of the spot is: Never smear toothpaste on your ass if all you have around is toilet paper!

They should have gone with the bidet-in-a-box concept.

posted by Mike at 12:33 AM 0 comments