The Clock King is most definitely the worst villain ever

A long time ago, I posed the question if The Clock King really was a villain, in the grand spectrum of things.  That he really was just a punctual and time-considerate individual in a world full of shitheads that don’t have such qualities, and he’s the one that gets painted to look like the bad guy, and eventually a member of Batman’s rogues gallery.  Back then, it didn’t really seem fair to me that he was considered a villain and I wanted to open that discussion to my then-six readers.

But after a weekend like this past one, and 2+ years of parenting, all I can really think of now is that not only is The Clock King most definitely a villain, he’s without a shadow of a doubt the greatest evil in all of comics.  Worse than Darkseid, worse than Doomsday, worse than the Joker.  Worse than Thanos, worse than Kang, worse than Onslaught.  Shit, it transcends comic books, and The Clock King is the greatest evil in the history of, history.  Worse than Hitler, worse than bin Laden, worse than Trump.

Obviously this goes into the obvious notion that there is no greater force in existence than the passage of time, and how it’s unfeeling, unbiased, impervious by nobody, and never ending.  Which means those who wields it to greatest effect, like The Clock King, are basically the worst people ever.

At this current juncture of my life, there’s seldom any time in which I am not up against a clock on a fairly regular basis, and there are times in which it becomes absolutely maddening and fills me with despair and levels of stress that I have a hard time coping with.  By individual nature, I am a punctual person who believes in punctuality and adequate lead time; I hate to rush, I like getting to my destinations early, and as a worker I believe that 15 minutes early is on time and on time is late.

But since I’ve gotten older and had kids, my agenda is always packed full of things for other people, I’m routinely stretched past capacity, and I’m way more prone to being late to things, and I concern myself that I’m developing a reputation of being flaky and unreliable.  Or just a typical parent maybe.  Regardless, it goes against everything that I’ve always put a lot of conscionable effort into maintaining, and I have a hard time dealing with the seemingly endless stress that comes with being up against the clock.

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Kind of one of the worst days ever in a long time

[transcribed on my phone while I was laying awake in a sweltering house at 3 in the morning]

  • Couldn’t really work due to all sorts of conflicting appointments to do
  • Work team building function sucked up even more time in which I would have preferred to have gotten some actual work done than swing golf clubs when I don’t golf
  • Had to rush pack and head to the airport to which of course there was hellacious traffic because Atlanta
  • Atlanta’s airport logistics are never the same each time you visit and my risk of missing my flights due to being unable to check bags increase with every passing minute
  • Successfully getting our baggage checked was probably the only good part of the day
  • The plane ride from hell where #1 pissed herself during the taxi time in which nobody can access restrooms and then 30 minutes later, shit herself, requiring me to change her out of soiled clothes and into a spare outfit in the confines of a tiny airplane lavatory
  • Also #2 was a squirmy handful the entire flight because she was bored, hungry and past her bedtime and I’m pondering how much I hate air traveling with an infant and a toddler and never want to do it again
  • My dad’s house turned out to have turned into a house of horrors with no working refrigerator, no hot water from certain outlets and worse off, no working air conditioning. It was literally 84F upstairs, resulting in numerous people to sleep in the dungeon of my old basement to have any chance at staying sane

I went to bed after a cold shower feeling dejected, embarrassed and miserable at the circumstances of my surroundings and that I had to subject other people to them, much less my wife, kids and mother-in-law.  Need to figure out how to salvage the rest of this trip’s lodging situation even if it means relocating to a hotel or my mom’s place.

The Inevitable Unveiling of the AEW Trios Championship

On the Dynamite before the one I got to see live, the AEW Tag Team championship changed hands in a pretty exciting triple threat match.  The Dynamite I got to see live was a relative clunker with no championships defended or any surprises of any sort.  So naturally, it would be the Dynamite after the one I got to see live, AEW debuts the Trios six-man championship that everyone and their mother knew was inevitably going to happen because it was probably in some contract at the inception of the promotion that there would one day have to be a title in which the Young Bucks and Kenny Omega could hold all together.

So no real surprises here, but obviously if there’s any blets involved, it piques my interest because I am a connoisseur of belts awarded to sweaty men for choreographed meat slapping.  Eventually, AEW would have to unveil some blets that I didn’t think were silly and/or looked crappy enough to warrant me to possibly want one for my collection, even if it meant inflating their general count of blets shown on AEW programming to 28 different blets but considering their roster is like 156 people, they kind of need them, even if they only have three hours of actual television programming to show any of them.

Anyway, the Trios Championship: yeah, not really that impressive, design-wise.  Better than Ring of Honor’s Six-Man Tag Championships, but only mostly because gold is nicer looking than silver.  Red Leather, the designer of all of AEW’s titles to my understanding, clearly has an aesthetic that harkens from the old NWA/WCW days, and there’s kind of this retro-feel to it that’s kind of cool, but at the same time, it’s basically a massive spooge pattern of swirls and embellishments that don’t really make much sense other than fluff and artificially ornate.

The font selection of World, Trios and Champion looks odd to me, and I think I would’ve went with a sans-serif font, but considering the pattern around the rest of the design, it kind of trapped them into using it.  Like, of all of AEW’s native blet designs, I still like the Tag Team ones the most, because it feels bold and modern, but between the All-Atlantic not-Intercontinental, the surprisingly quick redesign of the women’s and the Trios blets, I have a feeling that they’ll nix the only cool blet design in order to be more cohesive aesthetically across the board.

It’s hard to make out the side plates, but it kind of looks like a silhouette of the Young Bucks delivering their 69th superkick of a match.  Which means the silhouette in the middle is most definitely Kenny Omega, and it should be of absolutely zero surprise that the side plate design would be of the Bucks and Omega, considering these blets were basically created for them.  To some capacity, they’re basically a trio of Taz’s FTW blet during his ECW heyday, where he just introduced his own title and then it somehow made its way into the circulation.

Overall, the design of the blets isn’t horrible, but they’re also not awe-inspiring either.  They’re safe and vanilla, but definitely not something I see and think oh shit, I need to get that for the collection.  The pattern work will make them extremely hard for Pakistanis to counterfeit, and if AEW wants to actually manufacture and sell replicas, they’ll probably be way too much for what I’d be willing to spend, so all in all, I’d consider this another flop in the blet portfolio of AEW, destined to become lost in the shuffle, and once it’s not being held by a member of the Elite, relegated to being defended on Dark: Elevation.

However, until that happens, there are bound to be some really fun matches to be had while this is in its honeymoon phase.  Inevitably, Kenny Omega and the Young Bucks will be Trios champs, and they will collide with Adam Cole, Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish, and that match will undoubtedly be a fun one.  Death Triangle and the House of Black will also make for some top tier trios, but once the honeymoon phase is over, it’ll be some rando mish-mashes of singles guys trading the blets around like 1999 WCW all over again.

Thoughts on my first ever AEW live event

Despite the fact that I don’t shy away from criticizing AEW, when the opportunity arose for me to get to go to an AEW taping for free, I was excited and didn’t hesitate to commit to it.  When the day is over, going to a live wrestling show with good company is always welcome, and I was hoping that the live experience would be different in-person than what I see on clips of the internet because I don’t have the time to watch AEW or any wrestling for that matter anymore.

I’d heard from those who have gone to them before and general internet scuttlebutt that the events had the tendency to become long-winded, depending on the nature of the agenda; AEW has been known to tape multiple shows in one evening, and contrary to popular belief among wrestling fans, I do believe that there is such a thing as too much wrestling, especially the older one gets with responsibilities commensurate to age and state of life.  But at the same time, if the show(s) were going good and the quality of the matches were strong, then it shouldn’t feel like such a drag, and considering AEW had made much of their name throughout the years of being a place where surprises and highlight matches happen fairly regularly, I was hoping that I would be privy to seeing some cool shit in person.

However, it would be just my luck that the show I went to was kind of a clunker, with no title matches save for one FTW Popeye’s Championship defense by Ricky Starks, despite the fact that the company has about 17 belts floating around.  There were no trademark Tony Khan surprises at all, no shock debuts, no mind-bending swerves or former WWE guy appearances.

Mind you, this particular evening featured a taping of Dark: Elevation, followed by a live episode of Dynamite, which was then followed by a taping of Rampage, so there were plenty of opportunities for some interesting shit to happen, but like I said, it would be my luck that I would be at a show where basically nothing of any importance happened.

If I had to name any particular highlights, it was probably the really drawn-out squashing of Darby Allin, at the hands of Brody King; I kept telling my friends that Brody was getting all of the offense so he looked strong, but would still job to some surprise defeat because Darby is one of the protected pillars of the company, but then Brody would just beat the shit out of him and then pin him after a brutal looking Greetings From Asbury Park-looking driver move.  And as someone who’s never been impressed with Darby or his accused deviancy, I was satisfied with that match.The main event of Dynamite was a painfully predictable blow-off match between Chris Jericho and Eddie Kingston, and I knew in two seconds after not seeing Sammy Guevara get put into the Discovery® Shark Week™ cage, that Jericho was 100% going to win with the assistance of Sammy.

I was really hoping to see guys like Pac and maybe a defense of the not-Intercontinental title, but nope no Pac.  Cesaro Claudio Castagnoli cut a promo on Jonathan Gresham but didn’t wrestle.  No Thunder Rosa and the women’s title, Jade Cargill and the TBS title were mired in tag-team action to further hide Jade’s green-ness, Keith Lee and Swerve the new tag team champions were in a comedy segment and didn’t wrestle, and the AEW interim champion Jon Moxley was also mired in tag team action, teaming with ROH Pure Champion, Wheeler Yuta.  It really was astounding that a company that has so many titles in play managed to chew up four hours with not a single one of them actually defended.

And much like many have opined before me, by the time we got to the taping of Rampage, a third of the crowd had left, and my company was getting tired or bored or concerned over the time in which the show would be over, and we actually ended up leaving early.  We stuck around for one more match as we were planning on leaving because it was Britt Baker, and she’s still relatively in a class of her own within the company as someone who can work, entertain and have presence, and it was a pleasure to see her live, but then we bounced immediately afterward, because most of us were dads, and we all had jobs, and staying out until midnight on a school night just didn’t seem like a very good idea.

One amusing-to-me observation I made, was that it really seemed like the event stacked all of the women’s action into Dark: Elevation, as the first three matches we saw that evening were all the women performers, working on their D show, even quality talents like Toni Storm.  Owner Tony Khan got into a little warm water with accusations of his misogyny when he threw a poor-optics hissy fit over the money he invested into NWA: Empowerrr the women’s-only event, and front-loading his taping with all the women’s matches as if to get them out of the way doesn’t help the optics of his perception of women’s wrestling.

So overall, my thoughts on the AEW live experience weren’t that impressed.  I think I caught a real dud clunker when the company has set a general bar that every episode of Dynamite should expect some surprises, bangers, and/or title matches.  Either Atlanta isn’t as AEW rabid as the company hoped the home of WCW should have been for them, or they just got unlucky, but when I left that evening, I was kind of disappointed.  Sure, the injury bug has hit AEW pretty hard, taking guys like Bryan Danielson, Adam Cole and ReDragon, Kenny Omega and other notable names off the table, but the promotion has a roster of nearly 120 talents, that someone should be able to grab a ball and run with it.

I was hoping that my friends and I would’ve experienced a killer show, to where I could gain a little better perspective of the charm and appeal of AEW, but as I walked out of the arena and to my car, I was left with no real change in opinion, and for a company that so many on the internet think is this savior of the business, I think they’re nowhere near as mistake-proof as the WWE is.

Would I go again if they’re in town and I’d have a hookup for free tickets again?  Absolutely.  But I definitely would temper my expectations a little bit lower, because even the fresh and supposedly mistake-proof AEW is more than capable enough of throwing up a clunker too.

Oh, Georgia #354

/stevecarrellwinceface.gif – Cobb County elementary school unveils new logos, immediately likened to Nazi symbolism, results predictable

Seeing as how mythical wife is an educator, I’ve become more familiar and cognizant of many schools in the Metro Atlanta area by osmosis, and I actually know of this particular school in question.  East Side Elementary is right off of GA-120 which is a pretty major thoroughfare, and I pass by it regularly, despite not knowing what the name of said school was until I read about where it was located.

But man, talk about a major, major, major fuck-up from this rebranding.  Whatever designer(s) they utilized to come up with this inflammatory design really needs to be scrutinized from a character standpoint, because either they’re some deep-repressed bigots, bigots that think they can pull the wool over the public, trolls who thought it would be a real gas to sneak in Nazi symbolism, or a little bit of all of the above.  However, seeing as how it was still government work, it can probably be safely assumed that the degree of creativity wasn’t particularly high.

When mythical wife showed me these logos, I immediately recognized the red flag, because when I was a wee lad, I played a lot of Wolfenstein on my 486, because it was about the only game it could handle, and Nazi eagles were all over the place.  Imagine my mortified and amused surprise to see something so close to Nazi symbolism, being used to represent an elementary school.

The best part about the trio of logos that they moved forward with, the only element that remained consistent between them all, was the Nazi eagle in the middle of it.  Complete with a monogram that replaces one of the S’s in SS with an E, to suddenly stand for East Side.  Like they were very insistent that of all the elements to be concrete, it had to be the Nazi eagle.  Font, shape, dynamic, all flexible, but nah dog, we GOT to keep that Nazi eagle intact.

To add insult to this embarrassingly ironic design faux pas is the fact that East Side elementary is literally next door to a synagogue.  Like very literally; not down the street literally, or catty corner literally; the school parking lot, if you go straight out of it, you will run right into a synagogue literally. 

Furthermore, this is about one of the whitest parts of East Cobb there is, and that’s saying something considering just how white East Cobb already is.  The neighborhood has “country club” in the name and is flanked by a golf course, and I’ve driven through and picked up cheap/free shit that rich white people were peddling on Facebook marketplace, so I’ve seen first-hand how elevated white it is compared to the rest of the town.

None of it helps feed the narrative of a lily-white community being so dense and ignorant as to not notice their neighborhood elementary school adopting Nazi imagery to be a part of their logo.  In the end, I don’t think the school or community is really that Nazi, so much as the person(s) who developed these logos, probably have some explaining to do.  But what’s done is done, and the internet never forgets, so it’ll be etched in stone that there was a school in Cobb County that was almost branded with Nazi eagles.  hashtagGeorgia hashtag’Murica

On principle, I now have to root against Juan Soto

We pleebs will never understand: Washington Nationals outfielder Juan Soto rejects contract extension offer worth $440 million dollars over 15-years

The armchair baseball analyst stat geek in me understands the impetus behind this decision.  It’s really not that complicated.  Combining never-ending inflation and the fact that between now and 2025, other players will continue to raise the bar of annual value, Juan Soto stands to make more money than $440 million dollars when he his free agency.

But the normal human being in me just sees that a guy has rejected life-changing money two-hundred times over, and can’t help but feeling infuriated at the arrogance of some asshole who gets paid insane amounts of money to play children’s games.  Like really, even in “just” his arbitration years, he’s making more money than most people will ever see in their entire lives, and here he is turning down $440 million dollars like someone asked him if he were interested in learning more about timeshares.

Fuck this guy.  Frankly, fuck any guy who turns down any figure that’s seven figures or higher, and honestly, fuck anyone who turns down a league minimum deal to be a bench warmer considering the league minimum was bumped up to like $700,000 a year.  Y’all motherfuckers play baseball for a living, and turn down big money offers like they’re some sort of insults, like you were genius doctors who were working on the cures to deadly diseases on a daily basis.

Prior to this, I never really had any qualms with Juan Soto.  I always liked that he was this fairly unknown to those outside of the Nationals fanbase, that just quietly came up after all of the pomp and hoopla of the Bryce Harper departure of DC.  And not only did he quickly erase and make people in Washington forget about Bryce Harper, he helped the Nationals go all the way, and win a World Series in short order after showing up.

Obviously, at the rate in which he was performing, it was only a matter of time before this day would come when the rhetorical questions of how much Juan Soto was worth were going to emerge, but I just haven’t been paying any attention.  I can hardly keep up with the bullshit going on in Braves Country™ much less the baseball country outside of it, but I’m not the least bit surprised that we’ve finally gotten here to where Juan Soto is no longer the team-controlled stud that’s just happy to be here, but is a budding superstar who’s on the cusp of getting paid.

All the same though, now that he’s turned down a purported three different extension offers from the Nationals, with the last one being the aforementioned 15/$440M/no deferred money, it’s just absolutely flabbergasting the arrogance and audacity a person can have to actually say no to a sheer amount of money such as these.

Sure, there’s always the game of keeping ahead of the Joneses but nobody ever wins as is the passage of time.  Soto takes a 15/$500 in 2025, but by 2026, there will be some future megastar that will sign a 15/$505, and so on and so on.  It’s a game of insanity that will never end, and other than a few individuals getting rich, it’s only going to result in future professional athletes looking like bigger and bigger greedy assholes as they continue to extort and accept these gaudy salaries for playing kids games.

So now, on principle, I have no choice but to start rooting against Juan Soto.  He is far from the first guy that I’ve held this attitude towards, but as certain as the game of salaries continues to grow every year, he’s just the latest prick to cave into the game of greed. 

Soto may be on pace to be worth more than $440M in a few years, but that is, if nothing bad happens to him between now and 2025.  An injury or two, or perhaps the rest of the league re-writes the book on him and realizes he sucks at hitting pitches up-and-in, or maybe a combination of both.  History has no shortage of professional athletes who completely collapsed onto themselves during their contract years one way or another, resulting in them getting owned into oblivion in hindsight brutality.

I don’t wish physical harm to come onto anyone, but if Soto were to get hurt between now and 2025, I can’t say that I wouldn’t shake my head and laugh, especially if the guy struggles to bounce back and by the time 2025 rolls around, he’s just another silly greedy gambler who didn’t take the money when he had the chance, and instead ends up on the Long Island Ducks just trying to cling to any semblance of a career.

Dad Brog (#092): Fuck parents who send sick kids to school

#1 has gone to but just three days of camp, and she’s already picked up some sort of sickness.  Croup or RSV, most likely, although it would probably be in my best interests to run a COVID test to make sure, but the point remains is that all it took was three (half) days being exposed to other kids before my kid has picked up some sickness.

And because we’re active parents who aren’t content to let our children suffer in isolation, we do what we can to care for them when they’re waking up because they can’t breathe, and I woke up this morning with a slight fever after going to bed with massive chills, and it’s evident that such a bug has afflicted me as well.  I’m mostly fine, but my digestive system is telling me that I’m most definitely not 100%.

The point is, I’m livid and frustrated because the impression I get is that some parent(s) somewhere of kids that go to my kid’s school, knowingly let their sick kid go to school, where they have exposed everyone else to their plague, and in the case of my daughter, she’s brought it into my home where now I’m also affected by it too.

Basically, the overarching feeling I feel is what the subject of this post says: fuck parents who send sick kids to school.  I wish grave misfortune onto those of you who knowingly do it, like some gnarly and violent diarrhea that ruins your day, and maybe some clothes along the way.

I get it, it’s frustrating as hell raising kids sometimes, and when they’re sick and whiny and inconsolable, I’d want to jettison them out of the house for a few hours too.  But that’s a dick move and irresponsible and reckless, and I wish terrible things onto parents who knowingly do it.  Today, we kept #1 home from school, because it’s the right thing to do, and this is how responsible people conduct themselves, and look out for others.

Ironically, my own mother sent me to school with very obvious evidence that I had chicken pox.  But this was when I was in kindergarten, and I didn’t know the severity of the situation, until my teacher took one look at me and shipped my ass off to the office where I had to wait for my mom to come get me.  I still give my mom shit about that story to this day, even more so now that I’m a parent as well.

And I understand that sometimes it’s hard to tell if a kid is sick or not.  In those instances, there’s a little more leniency from my judgment, but if your kid is showing obvious signs of hoarse coughing, snotty noses or any sort of physical addling, then fucking keep your kids home for god’s sake.

I have no idea if the parents of whatever plague rats that have spread their disease onto my kid’s school knew or not that they were harboring a patient zero.  But in my cynical view of society, I assume they did, and so fuck them.  I hope they get a case of the shits while stuck in traffic, because knowingly sending sick kids to school is exactly why coronavirus will never, ever end, and I’ll go homicidal if some shithead passes it onto my kids.  Sure, I know this whole rant sets me up for some future hypocrisy if I’m ever in a position where it’s borderline, and I send my kids to school, but we’ll cross that bridge if and when it ever happens.  But for now, crazy shits for those who do.