This is what we call a smart bride

I would have killed to have had a wedding food budget under $2,000: Georgia bride sparks internet debate after revealing that she had catered her wedding with food from Chili’s

Camp me firmly and unquestionably on the side that is completely on board with catering from Chili’s.  I would have been willing to shave my head if I could have paid 1/6 of what I ultimately paid for catering at my wedding.  Not to mention the menu itself sounded perfectly adequate, if people didn’t hear the Chili’s name attached to it:

served guests an all-Chili’s menu including chicken tenders sliders, egg rolls, chips and salsa, Cajun chicken pasta and salad

I know the woke society we live in is all anti-chain and tends to automatically dislike restaurants like Chili’s, but I have no problem with Chili’s.  In fact, of all the lily-white chain restaurants out there, I’d go out on a limb and say Chili’s is probably among my favorites if not my favorite one.  Their ribs are fantastic, they used to have these tacos that were both good and economical, and frankly there’s nothing on their menu that wouldn’t hit the spot on any given day.

When a Taco Mac is slammed to the gills despite the fact that they’re a chain restaurant themselves, just regional, it’s nice to know that I can probably get expedient and quality table service from a Chili’s if there’s one nearby, which has been the exact case more than just a few times in my life.

I feel like I went to a wedding within the last year where the menu was kind of like this, and I’ll be lying if I didn’t say that it wasn’t completely satisfying to go back up for seconds and get a generous helping of chicken tenders with three different dipping sauces.  It might not have been from Chili’s, but the menu seemed to have some overlap here.

But seriously, I’m completely on the side of this bride who sounds like she made the best of her budget and went with an option that provided decent grub at an extremely economical price point, and I feel like anyone who criticizes her choices probably needs to get their pretentious heads out of their pretentious asses, and get over their prejudices of chain restaurants.  More so if they themselves have never had to plan a wedding and deal with the ridiculous cost of catering, because that shit is absolutely bonkers and they 100% put a cost on the fact that it’s for a wedding in the pricing.

The Galactic Starcruiser experience shutting down pleases me

Surprise, surprise: there aren’t as many people willing to plunk down nearly $5,000 for two days, to live out Star Wars fantasies, as Disney decides to shutter the Galactic Starcruiser experience in September

I like to think that this was some convoluted experiment by Disney, in seeing just how far they could push a price tag before it actually proves to be insurmountable by even the richest of the privileged class.  And it appears that they’ve found their answer with the Galactic Starcruiser, and that roughly $1,200 per person per night for a two-night experience seems to have found that breaking point where they just can’t swindle enough people in order to remain open.

Now I like Star Wars, even though my fandom has been put through the ringer throughout the passage of time and the growth of the internet.  Sure, my fandom has been disrespected, invalidated and questioned by the smarmy segments of fans that feel the requirement to test the level of interest, and the internet has more than opened my eyes to just how shitty and insufferable the base majority of Star Wars fans are, but there’s no level of dedication to the property I could achieve to where I would think it was a good idea to drop nearly $5k in order for mythical wife and I to have a two day LARP in the world of Star Wars.

All through the journey of speculation, development and execution of the whole Galactic Starcruiser idea, it was pretty early revealed that this was something that really only those with the deepest of pockets would be able to partake in.  And when stuff like this is priced out of oblivion for the rest of the, well world, I begin to feel resentment towards it, so it makes me feel smug satisfaction to hear that Disney is pulling the plug on it, in such short order.

At the same time, I feel more disdain for the Mouse at not just, lowering prices, and making the whole thing a little more attainable for the rest of us pleebs, because if it weren’t more than my property taxes, I’d probably be interested.  The idea of shuttering it versus lowering the prices is an egregious act of arrogance of the biggest asshole variety that really could only come from the money printer known as Disney.

But when it really comes down to it, good riddance to an experience that really was catering to the 1%, and it’s very amusing that even the 1% reached their limits with this whole idea, to where even a company that’s so adept at glorifying their wins and hiding their weaknesses like Disney, to have such a public and monumental L on display.

Because as an annual passholder, I can say all this shit, because nobody hates Disney more than their annual passholders.

Of course the Braves had to sell their jerseys too

When it comes to clowning on the stupid shit that happens in professional sports, nobody is exempt, especially the teams that I say that I am a fan of.  After all, nobody hates X more than fans of X, so when the Mets were getting dunked on for their ludicrously large sponsorship patches on their jerseys, it wasn’t because they were the Mets, I would’ve done the same to absolutely anybody.

Which brings us to the Braves, who have also jumped aboard the sponsorship patch train, because they clearly need the money; $588 million in revenue in 2022 barely covered the spike in the cost of eggs that occurred.  And much like the Mets who sold their jersey sleeves to a local entity, the Braves sold their sleeves to an Atlanta company, Quikrete, which is among the leaders of the entire concrete industry in the western hemisphere.

But not only did they sell their sleeves to Quikrete, they also did exactly what the Mets did, at first: not really consider just how ridiculously large the sponsorship patch would actually be on their sleeves.  I mean seriously, the patch is maybe a 25% size increase from being the primary logo on the entire fucking jersey, and the Braves would become the first franchise in baseball to go the route of futbol, and have the chief sponsor be the biggest focal point of the jersey, even over the team’s name or city.

I don’t know how many people reading this (zero) have any understanding of embroidery or any experience with it, but it’s tremendously difficult to engrain any sort of details in embroidery.  That being said, Quikrete’s likely insistence that their logo look like it was on one of their signature yellow bags of concrete probably explains why it’s so fucking huge; in order for the tiny little wrinkles to show on the corners of the bag that help make it look like a bag of concrete are the reason why the whole thing has to be the size of an actual bag of concrete, making their logo shout louder than a MARTA rider hoping to avoid the post-Taylor Swift concert rush.

Either way, my theories about how the patches might affect player performance for the Mets now also apply to the Braves.  And considering the Mets’ performance was pretty pitiful, and the fact that they relented and actually redesigned their sponsor logo, let’s hope the Braves wizen up a little bit sooner than the Mets did before their nice little cushion they’ve build in the National League disintegrates.

Speaking of which, among the best slams on the internet to emerge from the mass-dunking on the Braves for selling out, was this particular gem that I chuckled heartily at:

Right to the jugular.  Good job Barves, for never straying too far from the need to be greedy.

I’m surprised it survived this long, honestly

TIL: The Greenbriar Mall Chick fil-A was the first-ever Chick fil-A opened, in 1967.  But it’s closing for good now

I did know that a large part of the original expansion for Chick fil-A’s strategy was to get themselves into mall food courts, like they did at Greenbriar Mall.  I remember the first time I ever encountered a Chick fil-A, it was at Landmark Mall in Alexandria, Virginia and like most kids embarking on a journey towards childhood obesity, the main standout was the fact that they had waffle fries.

But it’s interesting to learn that the very first Chick fil-A that was opened was in Greenbriar Mall, and it’s even more fascinating to know how it has managed to survived throughout the passage of time, because the passage of time hasn’t been particularly kind to Greenbriar Mall.

Since I’ve lived in Georgia, Greenbriar Mall hasn’t exactly been known for the best of things, and off the top of my head the greatest (read: not greatest) hits are:

  • Former home to the only Magic Johnson theater on the east coast which ultimately succumbed to the increase of crime and shenanigans and closed down
  • One of the hottest areas on crime heat maps in the entire Metro Atlanta area
  • Where a massive flock of sneakerheads gathered in the middle of the pandemic for the release of the latest Air Jordans, garnering global ridicule

Needless to say, I didn’t even know that a Chick Fil-A was in the mall and yes I have been there before, because it was pretty much where the last Circuit City in the area was, and I have gone a few times in the past to get computer shit.  But it’s safe to say that Greenbriar Mall was basically the inspiration for Chris Rock’s entire routine about black malls, and even Donald Glover’s Atlanta show acknowledged it as much.

But considering the company as a whole is extremely guarded and calculated with their locations, I’m amazed to have learned that they stuck it out for over 50 years in that location.  I’m assuming that history had something to do with their staunch tenacity at staying put, plus the fact that since the company is based in nearby Hapeville/College Park, there’s something about keeping the OGs intact as long as possible. 

However, there’s no denying the unsatisfactory area that Greenbriar Mall and surrounding area have become throughout time, and I can’t say I’m the least bit surprised to hear that they’re shuttering the location.  I’m more surprised that they managed to last 50 years there, so at this point, it’s not really so much a sad departure, as much as it’s kind of like a sort of honorable death from the Night’s Watch.

And now their watch is over.

Dad Brog (#111): An offense so grand

The nightly routine goes as follows: 6:30pm, it’s upstairs for bath time.  Then comes the night routine of lotions and pajamas, and then it’s story time and then bed time for both the girls.

Tonight however, things took a turn for the explosive worst, when the pajamas I selected for #1 were the Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings pajamas that mythical wife picked up on clearance because my kids are toddlers and girls have a way easier time getting away with wearing boys-designated clothing than the other way around.

When she saw the pajamas that I was about to put on her, I might as well have declared war on the Jews, bombed Pearl Harbor, and released the Bubonic plague all at the same time.  She went absolutely ballistic and outright refused to wear the pajamas.  I tried to coax them onto her, and was met with a fucking Liu Kang bicycle kick for my troubles. 

I did eventually get them onto her, hoping that she’d chill out and resign to the clothes that she would just be sleeping in, and changing out of in the morning, but no, it was screaming and snot and tears and waterworks, and I’m trying my hardest not to die laughing over the fact that it was just a pair of fucking Shang-Chi pajamas that was triggering this meltdown.

Eventually, it became apparent that she wasn’t going to lose this argument.  We went into her room for story time and lights out and the meltdown was still on.  And because my house is kept cold through the night, I didn’t want her to strip down as soon as I left the room, so I acquiesced and changed her pajamas to something that wasn’t as offensive as screaming the N-word at the top of my lungs in College Park.

Lesson learned today: #1 most definitely isn’t a fan of Shang-Chi.  Better avoid that one when eventually going through the Marvel movies timeline in the future.

Someone is clearly a Shinsuke Nakamura fan

Credit goes to mythical wife for turning me onto this story, but out of the blue she asks me if I’d seen these baseball uniforms.  Obviously the answer is no, because I’m so buried in either work or parenting that I see practically nothing that isn’t spoon fed to me through social media, and I’m disappointed in the algorithms that didn’t feed me this one, because it’s basically tailor made for my general interests.

But the Nippon Ham Fighters of NPB debuted some brand-new alternate uniforms, and naturally my first reaction is wtf, but very closely followed with the very obvious parallel that these look basically like one of Shinsuke Nakamura’s signature ring attires.  I mean come on, the two-tone red and black everything, the plunging V neckline with the weird collars on it, it’s straight up Shinsuke Nakamura all over it.

It turns out that these uniforms were “designed” by manager Tsuyoshi Shinjo, who’s a pretty flamboyant guy in his own right, but I think it’s safe to assume that he’s probably a Shinsuke Nakamura fan, because there’s absolutely no reason at all for a design like this to ever manifest from a baseball brand whose colors are primarily blues and golds.

Either way, upon seeing these horrible uniforms, it was inevitable that I couldn’t avoid brogging about it, as well as photoshopping Shinsuke Nakamura onto pictures of the team in these hideous kits.  But apparently, new uniform luck still applies to these as well; from what I understand, the starting pitcher for the debut game ended up throwing a complete game shutout.  Perhaps the Lotte Giants hitters were confused about stepping into a batters box against a professional wrestler, and by the time they realized they were up against a pitcher, they were already behind in the count.

Maybe Shinjo can go ahead and get started with designing the kits for the 2027 World Baseball Classic, because nothing would be a bigger power move than seeing Japan’s best players winning another WBC, all while cosplaying as Shinsuke Nakamura.  Imagine Mike Trout and Bryce Harper striking out to Shohei Ohtani wearing this get up

Legend status.

I don’t think Tony Kemp’s wife understand how all this works

I don’t know why it was fed to me, but from the standpoint of it triggering enough reaction to where I felt like writing about it, I guess our AI overlords sure know how to get to each and every one of us.  But I read this story about how baseball player Tony Kemp’s wife gave him an ultimatum after he was drafted, to make it to the big leagues in three years, and I’m just really annoyed by it.

Personally, I don’t like the idea of ultimatums in the first place, and feel that ultimatums in general are usually employed in lost cause situations, and I’m of the personality to where I most certainly don’t like the heavy pressures that usually are associated with ultimatums, to where they’re automatically detrimental to whatever cause for ultimatum there was in the first place.

So I feel for Tony Kemp despite not really knowing much about him at all, seeing as how I’m basically a casual baseball fan these days and I don’t know every 25-man roster of every team like I used to, because having to play under such an unreasonable and incredibly selfish clock to begin with probably wasn’t the most ideal of conditions to be starting a professional career with.

When a player is drafted, there’s still a gargantuan amount of luck and moving parts that all need to shift and move and fall into place perfectly for them to actually make it to the major leagues, and there are countless examples of baseball players throughout history who have performed well, and never made it to the big leagues.  Even this year, was a story about a guy on the Pirates who had toiled in the minor leagues for 13 years before getting his first-ever opportunity to play in the major leagues.  And even still, he only made it up on account of an injury, and was jettisoned back to the minor leagues as soon as the player returned.

The typical timeline for a player, and that’s if they play well, have the front office behind them, and have already been invested in, is usually like five years.  They might get a September call-up before then, or a cup of coffee if someone is injured, but if everything goes well, players that are part of a team’s plan, usually still make it up in five for good.  And that’s only if the parent ballclub isn’t trying to manipulate service time and playing chess with a player’s career in order to exploit loopholes in roster construction.

So for Tony Kemp’s wife to basically demand that Tony Kemp make it to the big leagues in three years, to me, comes off as extremely reckless, unreasonable, and because the underlying message was, because her career would have to go on hold, pretty selfish.  Good on her for having her own career hopes and ambitions, but maybe don’t marry a ballplayer, much less slap a ridiculous ultimatum on him, because the pressure of such alone, could very well have blown up in their faces.

The only reason why this is a non-issue today is the fact that Tony Kemp miraculously did succeed at making it to the bigs in three years.  And thankfully there wasn’t any intricate stipulations in his ultimatum with the wife about needing to actually stick in the major leagues, because after he came up in 2016, the Astros ping-ponged him back and forth to the minors multiple times over the next few years, but if I had to guess, since he was a part (at least on the 40-man roster) of the 2017 cheating champions squad, wifey probably got swept up in just how big of a deal it can be, even for a shuttle-bus player like Kemp was then.

Here’s what irks me though; Kemp’s wife was in broadcasting in some capacity up in Toronto, and her career was supposedly trending in a direction she wanted.  Even if she stayed in broadcasting, what kind of ceiling would she capable of reaching?  Probably not to the heights that even a baseball player of marginal talent could achieve, just by being the last guy on a 25-man roster.  Money is not everything in life, but seeing as how the MLB minimum when Kemp was a rookie was still $475K, I’m willing to bet that ol’ Tony was going to be the primary breadwinner.

But the thing is that wifey basically gambled with his career, all because she was concerned about putting her career on hold.  Like, there are ways to go about chasing dreams independently, without having to put unreasonable pressure on your partner, but that’s basically what happened with the Kemps, and that’s kind of why I got fired up over this topic in the first place.

Like I’m sure Kemp’s wife isn’t so torn up about giving up her career, seeing as how hubby has made over $8 million throughout his career, which is kind of surprising considering how mediocre of a talent he kind of is.  He had one okay season in 2021, but he’s still a career .239 hitter with an OPS of .679, and has a career bWAR of 3.6 which is heavily weighted by his performance in 2021.  And the way he’s playing in 2023, his major league career probably isn’t going to last much longer, but like I said, he’s made $8M in his career, and smart people have parlayed less into retirement and the good life.

If I’m a betting man though, a partner who rains on the parade of him getting drafted in the first place with ultimatums, is probably a partner that’s going to be crawling up his asshole once his major league career starts to fizzle, and he’s stashed in the minors of whomever is willing to keep him employed.  Sucks because there are now kids involved, but that’s life in America, and everyone needs to take care of themselves so they can take care of the others that matter; with or without the unnecessary pressures of ultimatums.