Monday, May 19, 2008

Win 10 (Crummy) CDs!

Every so often, I’m hit by an uncontrollable desire to do something insane. This used to manifest itself in behaviors such as doing large amounts of illegal drugs – those that could blow up my heart, like cocaine, becoming particular favorites near the end of my recalcitrant youth – or perhaps with forays into gambling that I could barely afford. As I’ve aged, I’ve been able to limit myself to one hideously unhealthy habit – smoking – and sublimated the rest of my risk-taking into things that might actually have benefited me in some way; fast-pitch softball, for example.

You’ve probably heard me say it far too many times, but I’ll repeat it again for those who might be new around here: I’ve retired from playing ball. I’ll still be a part of the teams I once played for, as coach and/or statistician, but that doesn’t quite do it for me, insofar as raising my adrenalin levels is concerned. I still need something else. As a result, although I’ve been a fan of the Celtics, Red Sox, Patriots, Bruins, and Boston College for many years, I’ve now become somewhat more dependent upon the sporting teams I root for to provide me with a high.

Lucky for me, the Celtics have had a wonderful season. I’ve been able to ride along into the playoffs with Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo, and the rest of this very entertaining team. As a bonus, the coaching of Doc Rivers is definitely enough to raise my blood pressure a few points and put me at risk of a stroke, so that has certainly been a delight for a demented thrill seeker like me.

(Honestly. Does the man have any clue? There have been 82 regular season games, as well as 14 playoff games, and he still has no idea from one night to the next what his rotations are going to be. His starting five is set, and that’s good. But as to who’s coming off of the bench at any point in the game, I think he just goes “Eenie-meenie-minie-mo, now’s the time for Leon Powe!” or, perhaps, “My mother and your mother were hanging out clothes – My mother punched your mother right in the nose – What color was the blood? P. J. Brown!”)

All of the above, as disjointed and disconnected as it truly is, leads to this seemingly even-more-random-than-you-would-have-thought-possible sentence: I cleaned my bedroom last week.

Yes, there’s nothing I won’t do to get the rush I need. Danger is my middle name.

Now to be honest, "cleaned" is not quite the correct word in this instance. What I did was take a bunch of crap off of a desk. This created an empty space that I will fill with different crap, sooner or later. In the meantime, I have a pile of CDs that need a good home. I could put them back into the empty space, but they’re really crummy CDs and I want to save that space for something more meaningful; perhaps the remaining hair on my head, which I will yank out the next time Doc Rivers tosses the dice, comes up with eleven, and inserts "Big Baby" Davis for almost the entire fourth quarter of a playoff game.

(Davis is a good, hustling, likable player. He’ll be around in the NBA for many years, and I truly hope those years are with the Celtics. However, Leon Powe was such an outrageously obvious choice to have in there against the Cavaliers in game six, rather than Davis, that I think perhaps Doc Rivers is doing hallucinogens. Powe is superior to Davis, at this point in their careers, in just about every aspect of the game. Davis MAY have a better short jumper, and he is certainly a bigger body to put on someone, but Powe is easily the superior rebounder. The Celtics were getting their asses handed to them in the paint. They needed someone good off of the offensive boards in there. So, Doc Rivers said, “One potato, two potato, three potato, four – Davis can eat more potatoes than Powe! Get in there, Davis!”)

(OK. No more Doc Rivers bashing. After all, he’s gotten it close enough to right this year to win 74 of the 96 games the team has played. Everything he did yesterday worked, that's for sure. I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps in game six he was privy to information I didn’t have. Maybe Leon Powe came down with polio overnight.)

So, I believe when last we met outside of the parentheses, I was telling you about how I have 10 (crummy) CDs that need a new home. That would be YOUR home! That’s right, ladies and gentlemen. Here’s where you get yours!

If you’ve been hanging around at this address for any reasonable length of time, then you know that my taste in music is execrable. I have been known to admit publicly that I actually enjoy Grand Funk Railroad. I am probably the only American alive with a collection of every recording made by Budgie. I have the complete works of Bloodrock, something that most members of the group themselves probably wouldn’t fess up to. What this means to you is this: If I think these 10 (crummy) CDs are crummy, you might think they’re pretty good, because you might have normal tastes in music.

Now, having raised your expectations so slightly, I have to come up with a fair way to distribute these 10 (crummy) CDs. And what better way to tie this mess together than to announce a contest involving the Celtics? Yes, as is the case with most junkies, I would like to see you become as addicted as I am. To that end, I will have you watch the Celtics (or, at least, follow the scores of the games) over the next week or two.

In the comments section, please leave your best guess as to how many points the Celtics will score between May 20th and June 16th. The person coming closest to the actual total will win the 10 (crummy) CDs.

To sweeten the pot, if anyone guesses the EXACT total, I will throw in a $25 gift certificate to Amazon.

If you’re not a Celtics fan (heathen!) here are some facts you should know in order to make at least an educated guess.

There is a possibility of 14 games being played during that time period. There will be AT LEAST 4 games. The number will depend upon whether the Celtics are eliminated from the playoffs in straight sets by Detroit (4 games) or win some games, and maybe even win the NBA Championship (I hope, I hope, I hope, I hope.)

The score of one NBA team, during any particular game, could run from about 60 up to 150. A more rational expectation would be from 75 to 125. In my humble opinion, the Celtics will likely score between 80 and 110 per game.

There you have it. Figure out how far you think the Celtics will go, and how many points they’ll score in getting there. Give me that number in the comments section. The person who comes the closest to the actual total will win the 10 (crummy) CDs. And you may get lucky and win a real honest-to-goodness $25 gift certificate. What have you got to lose?

(One entry per person. Deadline is 7pm EST, Tuesday, May 20th. Winner will be decided either at the end of the NBA playoffs or on the night the Celtics are eliminated from competition. I will cover the cost of shipping. In the event of a tie, I will come up with some suitably absurd tiebreaker. The decision of the judges – as if there were any – is final. When you receive the 10 [crummy] CDs, you are not allowed to ship them back to me. If you do so, I will come to your house and cave in your skull with a hammer.)

Make your best guess, and GO CELTICS! In the meantime, I’m going to go do something extremely life-threatening. I think it’s called "work."

Soon, with more better stuff.


Tara said...


Balcony Gal said...

I don't know what made me laugh more - your PJ riddle or Tara's guess. I'm not going to guess because I'm trying to give away my own stinking junk over at the Balcony. And why should I guess when I just know the Celtics will win. You know? Good luck to the rest of the contestants, though!

lime said...

950 points

can we still be friends if i say i am a sixers fan (such as i define fandom...meaning i can't even name a single player on the team nowadays but i have a vague hisotrical/geographical loyalty)? i mean i grew up outside of philly during the dr j era and all. but i have a healthy respect for the celtics because of larry bird. yes, i am pathetic, i know that. maybe the music would help. ok, stop laughing.

Sassy said...

I couldn't even guess. I am following the Celtics now simply b/c a) I find it amazing how far any team has come in this Playoffs season being that NONE OF THEM can win on the road, apparently, and b) they're in my general vicinity at the moment and finally c) the Mavs blew it and then prematurely (IMO) fired Avery Johnson.


So I'll just throw out a random guess and say 934.


Sharfa said...

OK, I admit I'm not a huge basketball fan. I have heard about the trouble winning away games. I'm going low ball here and guessing 385. I just think they won't win in the Detroit series.
Playing the devils advocate and Tara's polar opposite

Julie said...


...coming from someone who's watched only one full basketball game in her life: my little brother in elementary school.

But if it's worth anything, I'll be hoping for the sake of your high that the Celtics do well. :)


Kevin Smith said...

Must important question in life for which the answer is not 42. This will take some thought.

FHB said...

OK, being COMPLETELY ignorant of all things related to broball, well not TOTALLY, my chances of actually guessing correctly are very slim. However, I'll accept your challenge and make the radical guess of... 410. I figure four games, four times 100, plus a little extra so you won't think I'm dissing your team.

Play on, and good luckk to all. And by the way, I like GFR. Never heard of the others.

Jeri Burtchell (TickledPink) said...

A gazillion.

(same answers I gave when my dad asked "how many times have I told you ___??!")

Okay, seriously, based on the number of actual CD's to be given away and multiplied by their crappiness factor, dividing by the square root of new desk space aquired and finding the quotient of free desk space divided by the number of days the space will remain free, I have to state the obvious and say 919. I can't believe nobody got it.

Can you guess I know diddly about sports? (That's a technical term I wouldn't expect the lay person to understand.)

Anonymous said...

1066. If it was good enough for William the Conqueror, it's good enough for Leon Powe.

Chris Stone said...

990? I really haven't a clue. I haven't watched the Celtics... but after reading you description of Doc it certainly sounds entertaining.

what a great way to clear off a desk!

kuanyin333 said...

Hey, I've been meaning to visit you, so mahalo for jogging my memory. As you read, I'm chin-deep in excavating the old. Doesn't it FEEL great giving stuff away?

As for predicting, I joined the online company Predictify this past year, and asked my partner to help me out with sports, but he didn't help me out much at all! He's got a penchant for picking the underdog for some reason, and thus the scores didn't come out so great! So I know we'd surely loose your contest too!

But you've inspired me to get rid of my crappy cd's of which I have plenty too! I'd forgotten about them! I know I could match you there for crappy ones!

Good look with your contest, and congrats on the new advertising sponsor. May it put some moolah in your pocket for beers!

SandraRee said...

A long LONG time ago I was a huge Rams fan, wait... that's football right? I don't know a whole lot about basketball except the players are always tall and make way too much money. ;) And to heck with the CDs I want the $25 gift certificate!
EXACT total: 860

your comment on "The Five Fingers Prayer" was funny, bad but funny. :)

Anonymous said...

Okay Sully here is the deal, I wish to play and I don't wish to win!! Therefore if I do win, give the CDs to the 2nd place person or a charity of your choice. If you send them to me, I will bring them to your hosuse so we can accomplish 2 things at once; I can return the CDs and you can bash my skull in. The answer is 1012.

Dave said...

I think it has been well-established that the Celtics will win every game at home and lost every game on the road. That means 14 games to go. Call it 1190 points.

If I win, though, you have to send the CDs to Doc Rivers. Playing Cassell ahead of Rondo to start the fourth-quarter of Game 4?? WTF?

Shrinky said...

Basketball - isn't that a little bit like our netball? Our rounders is very similar to your baseball.. except it's usually played by a bunch of girls (oops, sorry)!

Ah well, never a one to give up on a freebie, I'll guess 689. The crummy cd's can take pride of place with all the other crummy cd's I use to wallpaper the shed.

Rooster said...


Nice contest - get the lads thinking! Well, history is staring us in the face with the Pistons on deck, and the Lakers en route for a meeting in the finals. To please the NBA gods, both series will need to go to 7 games. Celtics are averaging ~89 points against the Pistons, and ~108 against the Lakers (which won't hold up in the playoffs). So...

Let's go with 630 points versus the Pistons, 665 points versus the Lakers for an exhausting total of...

1295! Going upper end on this one!

Buck said...

Thanks for the brief but informative roundball tutorial at the end. I have NO clue, even with your help, Jim. And it appears the Universal Answer (42) doesn't apply in this case.

Or so one would hope.

But: for the 962.

eileen said...



Chuck said...

I'll be an optimist, since I don't follow basketball closely at all...and guess....lucky 1300.

John-Michael said...

After input from a panel of sixteen Advisers who have entered their best evaluations, analysis, and estimates (with hope for no personal gain beyond a chance at being recognized as one of the panel enabling me to win ten crummy CDs) the agreed upon answer is 941 ... that is nine hundred, forty-one points (US.)

And tis proud I'll be to throw open the windows of my ride and have the sonorous tones of yet-unknown works of musical magic waft out over the neighborhood where I have heretofore spread nothing but good will and cheer as I have delivered the Tampa Tribune each morning for the past twenty years. But since my contract has now been terminated ... screw 'em!

I humbly thank the board of judges, the panel of advisers, and my sick Aunt Tilley for this dubious opportunity at ignominious honor. (The rest of my acceptance speech is being withheld for the awards ceremony in order that he suspenseful tension can mount to a critical point worthy of such an occasion.)

Lovin' Ya Jim, you SulDog Friend, you.

Stu said...

I suffer from Dyscalculia - so I won't even pretend to guess. However, I can say, clearly, that I AM A CELTIC. So I offer you this video from 1986 - First Time Since 1969 - Enjoy, and Go Boston!

Neponset River Bridge Dig said...

I couldn't enter this contest with a clear conscience -after all, I'm just a fair weather fan. Really I haven't had much enthusiasm about this Celts since the 80's.

Go Celts!!

BurningSky said...

I don't watch basketball much at all. I'm more of a hockey fan (Philadelphia Flyers \m/), but you commented on my blog, so I'll throw out a guess...


Anonymous said...

As the person who's musical tastes most closely resemble yours, I'm certain I will find the 10 CD's to be just completely horrible...but here goes.
The Celtics will fall to Detroit in 7 games while scoring a total of 630 points.
Also wondering if "The Price Is Right" rule applies where you must be closest without going over?

Stu said...

Go Sox!

Suldog said...

Two things stick out here, concerning your comments:

1 - Just about nobody else is a basketball fan. This means most of you are likely to be bored every time I write about it. Get ready to be bored a lot in the coming month!

2 - You are a bunch of very entertaining commenters! I can't remember anything I've written that received such a huge pile of truly funny comments like this stupid contest has.

So, when I write about basketball again, I expect that you'll be bored, but I'll be highly entertained. Thanks!

To answer Goody's question: No, it is not the closest guess without going over. The winner can be above or below the actual total. My hope is that one of you will hit it on the nose.

David Sullivan said...


The fix is in...wink...wink

Kevin Smith said...

Okay - here it is...I'm guessing that the Celtics, if they get past Detroit, end up playing 14 more games and score 1287 points. I reached that conclusion by the scientific method of pulling it out of my ass, thank you very much.

Unknown said...

OK just under the wire here...My guess is 912

I am sorry but the number is as arbitrary as your cd collection. I am a heathen who hates basketball. If I win maybe I'll donate the cd's to a kids basketball youth organization so I can feel good about it. Right after I load them all into iTunes.

Good luck everyone!

Anonymous said...

How does 627 sound to you? That's my guess and I'm sticking with it, so there.

CapCity said...

Now, u know i'm no celtics fan or ANY sports fan for that matter (i know -- WORSE than a heathen - down right AMORALE! LOL!) - so, i don't want the cd's - i just came by cuz i'm a SulDog FAN (flattery will get me everywhere, right?;-) ANNNNDDDD I've been on a cleanin' frenzy, too! Wooo hooooo! LOL!

Urbie said...

Hey, Suldog -- I think you should give up the Celtics and take up bowling.

Following a sports team (which I admit I used to do -- I gave up the Sox after '86 and the Celtics after Reggie Lewis died) is a classic example of co-dependency. You're putting your emotional well-being at the mercy of something that is totally out of your hands. Why do that?

Instead, when you're out rolling the rock, you've got (some measure of) control over the outcome. What's more, you have lots of fun, and you get back to something that was once a very important part of your life!

Just a helpful suggestion from the U.R.B.A.N.A.T.O.R. (Under-Rated Bowling Animal, Not Advisable To Ove-Rlook)....

Janet said...

Being originally from a state without a professional basketball team and currently residing in a state whose official religion is COLLEGE basketball, I generally follow the Celtics if I'm paying attention at all, because I like Larry Byrd. Yes, I know he's retired. I'm just going to guess 1041 because that's my street address and it's all way too much math for me to do when I don't have to. One of the posts I read in the previous blog blitz mentioned Christmas CDs. We have Esquivel as well. And my brother-in-law-in-law (I'll explain that sometime) recommended the Trans-Siberian Orchestra so we plan to get that one if we can remember. We have the Dr. Demento Christmas CD. We have a pretty eclectic collection that includes Broadway, Roy Rogers, Indigo Girls, Led Zeppelin, Beethoven, and David Arkenstone. A lot of it is on vinyl. We've been looking at CD recorders for the stereo so we can put all our vinyl on CD, but haven't been brave enough to spend that much money. I'm waiting until they get really cheap, like DVD players.