Behavioral observations as a new Tesla driver

To cut to the chase, I bought a Tesla.  Okay, it’s really my wife’s car and she’ll be the one making the payments on it, but on paper, I’m the purchaser, since I don’t have student loans and my credit was more optimal to get the financing done.  But we have a Tesla, and I get to drive it around every now and then.

It hasn’t been long, but it’s definitely a fun new toy to drive around in.  There’s definitely an adjustment period getting used to regenerative braking, and how you can literally drive with your foot on a single pedal.  The feeling of there being no gears shifting at all as you accelerate, and the sheer lack of sound of motors or smells of exhaust definitely makes you feel like you’re driving a spaceship.

Without question, there’s still a treasure chest worth of experience yet to be tapped as far as diving deeper into ownership of our Tesla, and I’m sure weeks, months and maybe years down the line, there will be functions and features that we’ll still be discovering, and hopefully none that will have been gamechangers early in our ownership.

But the point of this post is about behavioral observations that I’ve had, now that I’ve been driving around in the Tesla myself for a few weeks now.  I didn’t really think much about it after experiencing some observations, I guess I can kind of understand what’s going on around me whenever I, or my wife are riding around in the Tesla.

  1. Surrounding drivers are more aggressive. This is really the big thing that I’ve noticed the most when driving around myself.  Turning on a turn signal to initiate a lane change, way more frequently than I’ve noticed in any other car I’ve been in or driven, results in adjacent drivers stepping on the gas to forcibly deny me entry.  If at a merge point, surrounding drivers are noticeably more aggressive and out to make sure they get ahead of me, regardless of our spatial positioning.  At stop lights, in just the last two weeks, I’ve had more people act like they’re Brian O’Connor on me, and turn a green light into an impromptu drag race, and seemingly make a point of getting in front of me like they just won the le Mans.  I’m all like, buddy, I’m still trying to learn the pedal of this car, I’m definitely not trying to get in any races here.  Plus, I’m 40 with kids, I’m long past caring about 95% of red light matchups.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’ve pushed the pedal a few times, and the acceleration is staggering.  In most cases, I probably could smoke a lot of the cars that have gone Dom Toretto on me, but just because I could doesn’t mean that I am, especially where I’m still new to this and learning about the car.

    But I don’t know if it’s the color of the car, or the notion that all Tesla drivers must be rich assholes, but it’s pretty undeniable that drivers all around me, when I’m in the Tesla, have their aggression ramped up like that one cheat code in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City where you can make everyone super aggressive.

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The AEW All-Atlantic Championship hurts my brain

As if AEW needed any more blets to clog up their roster of 189 men and women, they went ahead and introduced a new, not-an-intercontinental championship, called the AEW All-Atlantic Championship.  It’s first title holder will be crowned at the AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door show later in the month, by virtue of a tournament, which I’m sure will be decent, but Tony Khan just can’t stop dipping his fingers into the cake to make everything so convoluted.

The best part about the whole tournament is the fact that of all eight of the guys in it, only two of them, maybe four if you consider Mexico and the Netherlands as actual Atlantic-facing countries, with Rusev Miro, Buddy Murphy Matthews, and two TBD NJPW all coming from the very Atlantic Bulgaria, Australia and most likely Japan.

Interestingly, there are no Americans in this tournament, which is probably Tony Khan’s insistence, to really drive home the fact that this isn’t an intercontinental championship, as if there were something actually wrong with it, considering the IC champs in both WWE and NJPW are usually the best workers of the respective companies. 

But make no mistake, this is very much the AEW equivalent of an intercontinental championship, and it’s fitting that it showed up after Cody Rhodes left the company, because he was always so adamant that there would be no such things as “mid-card” titles in AEW, because they were all important, from the bullshit non-sanctioned FTW championship, and all of the Impact, ROH, IWGP and NWA titles that have gotten screen time on AEW programming.

And it will be vied for by mid-card talents, since the actual AEW World championship is really reserved for those willing to play ball with the Elite, which has remained a very tight-knit circle since the inception of the entire promotion.

As for the design of the blet itself, seeing as how I am an aficionado of professional wrestling blets, it’s pretty mediocre, at best.  The plates are too tall, and anyone who knows anything about blets knows that vertical plates are typically frowned upon, because it makes the blets very difficult to wear, most notably the old ROH Television championship being the prime example; the height of the center plate dug into the abdomen as well as the crotch of anyone who tried to wear it and do any sort of bending at the waist.

I’m very perplexed by the incorporation of the Chinese and Japanese flags, as they are so very much Pacific countries, and what they’re doing on a blet claiming to be All-Atlantic.  And then there’s not one, but two lions from the UK’s royal coat of arms, which is again confusing considering the true crest features one lion and one horse.

The font of “All-Atlantic Championship” is the exact same one used in the old WWE US championship, adding to the irony of how this isn’t supposed to be an intercontinental championship, considering the US championship basically was WCW’s equivalent to the IC title too.  The font selection is also funny, because the V2 of AEW’s Women’s championship used the same font as every IWGP championship blet, adding more fuel to AEW’s blet creator’s lack of imagination.

And speaking of the AEW Women’s championship, it’s hard to not notice that the All-Atlantic is kind of a larger scale of it, primarily because of the large four circles at the corners of the center plate, as well as the overly tall plates in general.  Granted, it’s a large improvement over the original Women’s championship, but now it’s starting to look like AEW’s blet maker has created a template in which all future AEW blets will be based on, so when they inevitably introduced the Trios championship they keep churning the rumor mill about, I’m sure it’ll be a derivative of these two.

Overall, everything about AEW’s All-Atlantic championship is about as sloppy and poorly thought out as much of the promotion’s general booking.  It’s kind of a perfect metaphor for the promotion itself; kind of borrowing a lot from rivals and predecessors while trying too hard to be unique but making a lot of embarrassing mistakes in the process.  But the blet is shiny and new, and much like Chris Jericho once said about Ultimate Warrior promos, it (looks) cool, so… yaaaayy will be the general feedback from casual fans and AEW diehards.

As for predicting the title’s first holder, of the eight men vying for it, I think it’s ultimately Neville Pac’s to lose, and he’ll defeat one of the mystery NJPW guys for it.  Although it would tickle me pink if an actual Japanese guy from NJPW were the first guy to hold a new AEW championship, and it’s not an outlandish outcome, considering the working relationship between the promotions, it would be a good time for AEW to scratch NJPW’s back for a change and let them walk off with one of their blets, considering how strong NJPW has been booking AEW talents over the years.  But it would be funny if a Japanese guy were to be the first holder of an All-Atlantic blet.

Frankly though, I feel like there is a possibility that MJF is walking out with the All-Atlantic.  As murky as they’re trying to make the waters with MJF’s nuclear promos, I still think it’s a work, and somehow and some way, MJF is walking out of Forbidden Door with a championship.  He’ll be “fired” by AEW for his recent worked shoot conduct, and then immediately “hired” by NJPW and enters the All-Atlantic tournament under their banner, and does his usual schtick of using the Dynamite Diamond ring to cheat to win the All-Atlantic blet, where he can rub it in AEW’s face for being the first holder of it.  He also strikes me as a guy who was probably fan of all the intercontinental champions of history, and would love nothing more than to build his own legacy with AEW’s own intercontinental blet.

Not a bad place to start while he bides time for his contract to end so that he can go be a jobber in New York.

Yes it’s that time to talk about pooping again

One of the… no, it is definitively the best aspect about returning to the office, is the fact that I am able to get back to the gym, by virtue of the modest but adequate little gym inside my office’s building.  It’s free for tenants, has showers and complimentary towels, and the best part is that it’s hardly ever used.  Since I’ve been working out there, the maximum number of other people working out at the same time has me has never exceeded two people.

Knock on wood.

However, in spite of the fact that there aren’t a lot of people who work out on the regular as I do, the gym doors, are still somewhat commonly opened and entered, by people who believe the gym restrooms are the best place to poop.  Presumably they’re thinking they’re the most private, or least frequented, so that they can drop a deuce in perceived peace and cleanliness, but I don’t think any of these bozos seem to understand that I’ve already witnessed a number of people who use them that’s high enough for me to not even consider them myself if the need arises.

For those who have never had the opportunity to be mired in Office Space life, one notable behavior that most people don’t like to talk about but exists because everyone poops, is that people have a tendency to try and be discreet and do their work-time pooping on the down-low.  Either by coming in early, staying late, or in most cases with larger facilities, seeking out the bathrooms that are away from their daily peer groups, tucked away for privacy and/or sanitary reasons, or all of the above.

A Where’s Waldo of sorts, of the “best” bathrooms in the building.  I have a bathroom in the building that I think is the best bathroom for my needs.  It’s hidden behind the mailroom and based on the fact that most every time I go into it, I’m the one triggering the motion-sensing lights, which lets me know that nobody’s been there for a while, or the toilets still have the tint of green water from the last time they were disinfected.

Point is, everyone who works in an office probably has in the back of their mind, the bathrooms they like to use when they want some privacy and piece of mind.  And in my building, I’ve noticed that quite a number of people seem to feel that the gym bathroom is that bathroom for them, but unbeknownst to them, they would be sorely mistaken.

The men’s locker room has one toilet stall.  One.  Regardless of if I knew this wasn’t a good bathroom or not, I personally don’t like those odds, and wouldn’t consider it.  Presumably, the women’s locker room has two, due to the lack of need for a urinal, and make no mistake, women come into the gym to poop as frequently as men do, but at least they can hedge their bets with two toilets presumably to pick from.

Regardless, much like NASA gathers data on the all-relevant to space exploration conflicting between alligators versus sharks, solely based on the fact that it’s an interesting behavioral  anomaly that occurs near their Florida facilities, I have decided to start collating data of the pooping habits of the people in my building, who pop into the gym solely to poop, thinking it’s a nice and private bathroom for them to use.  It’ll be a fun little statistical gathering to see if any patterns or factoids emerge from it, and if anything all, just another topic I can dip into to write about in the future.

I also like to smugly meet the eyes of the people who come into the gym to poop; they know that I know what they’re doing, because they always roll in with no bags or gear, and beeline for the locker rooms.  If I weren’t masked up, they would see the facetious smirk on my face when they’re on their way out, because they think they’re being clever and pooping where it’s nice and safe, but based on the revolving door those poor toilets are, they might as well be crapping in a porta-potty during a marathon weekend.

#23: If it had come out sooner, it probably wouldn’t be #23

Nearly three years after it debuted on television, it was finally released as a replica, and I managed to wait it out until it was nearly $120 off its retail cost to snag it at a price point that I could digest: an NXT UK Tag Team Championship replica blet.

I can finally put this chapter of my collection to rest finally, and go back to pondering on whether or not I’ll ever consider getting moar blets for my ridiculous collection.

The funny thing is that had the UK Tag blet come out sooner, there would probably have been a good chance that I wouldn’t be up to 23 replicas in my collection.  It’s because it was never available, that the itch for new blets was never sated over the last three years, and how I ended up with probably 4-5 more blets than I probably would have considered getting.

Seriously, I wasn’t really that interested in the NXT UK blet, but I ended up getting it anyway, because it was on a ridiculous Brack Friday sale price, and I bit on the sale price fallacy.  Plus, I had gotten really into the NXT UK scene, and wanted to have any blet to represent the brand in my collection.

Same goes for the WWE US Championship, the only reason I ended up buying it was that it was on a Wrestlemania sale price, and I wanted to spoil myself to a little retail therapy to soften the reality check that fatherhood was proving to be.

The NWA and WCW Television blets are prime examples of just wanting new blets for the sake of having new blets to add to the collection, and I probably never would’ve ever searched for them ever if my collection were in a state of satisfaction, but I gave them the old college tries and eventually tracked them down and plunked down for them.

And frankly, the Ring of Honor World Championship, I probably never would’ve made it a unicorn blet in the first place had I had gotten an NXT UK Tag replica to sate the itch earlier.  But once I found out that official replicas of it existed, I knew that I had to have one and some Pakistani knockoff would not suffice.

Lest it not go unmentioned, #22 was also recently acquired, being a white strap WWE Intercontinental championship, which has the dubious distinction of being the first time I’ve basically bought the same blet twice, seeing as how I already had a black strap WWF Intercontinental championship.  The plates are nearly identical in both, and for lack of better term, the only real difference is the strap color.  But it was yet another sale price fallacy, and seeing it nearly 45% off made it very easy to pull the trigger.

Which brings us to the long-awaited UK Tag blet that I’ve wanted for three years.  Now that I have it, in a previous life I would say that my collection is complete, but as I’d already mentioned before, with the gaudy John Cena US Spinner back on the market, I’m only a waiting game away from having #24.  But once that one is acquired, I actually really can say that I don’t know what I’d want afterward, however I won’t say that my collection is complete this time.  There’s always a blet, or an idea for a blet, to make it happen again, where I plunk down hundreds of dollars for these useless toys, no matter how cool I can make them look, all hanging from my wall.

But as it stands, my wall is pretty much full, and nothing short of a massive reconfiguration (a second row) is going to give me the room for expansion that I need to go beyond 23 blets.  Never say never, though.

Blet world problems

With the NXT UK Tag Team replica blet now officially on the radar and awaiting an adequate discount price away from me pulling the trigger on the one blet that I have been wanting for nearly three years, you’d think I’d be running out of blets that conceivably even want for my collection.  Sure, there are tons of blets in the independent promotions that might warrant a second look, but those would be a little too edgelord even for a snob like me.  And AEW, much like New Japan are taking their replicas a little too serious for me to even consider wanting to buy one (yet).  

I’ve gotten pretty much all of the old ECW and WCW blets that I ever wanted (which is basically all of them), blets to represent my interests in New Japan, Ring of Honor, as well as NXT and NXT UK, and I’m currently holding onto two blets for my daughters until they hopefully come to their senses and realize that they want their blets on their own walls one day.

So, at some point, there’s got to be an end to the madness of all the blets that I could even want, right?  Especially with the one UK Tag blet that I’d been pining for basically all but already mine at this point, what could possibly come next?

Well for years, I’ve had friends and acquaintances think they were being clever internet comedians when they’d be telling me that I needed to get a John Cena US Spinner title blet for my collection.  They all thought they were being funny, because the Cena US Spinner was a blet that was polarizing in the sense that most everyone hated it, and I admit that I wasn’t a fan of it either, originally.  But as time passed, and I occasionally actually looked at it beyond fleeting moving video of it on television, I kind of dug it.  Way more than the eventual John Cena world title he unveiled, which for this juncture in time, I still say that I wasn’t a fan of the design and maintain that any blet that was once held by Jeff Hardy doesn’t have much credibility in my mind, even if CM Punk did the lord’s work with it before the got all high and mighty and martyred himself into oblivion.

In the years that I’d been waiting for the NXT UK Tag to release where it never happened, there were all sorts of blets that crossed my radar in that span in order to satiate my perpetual want for moar blets.  It was in this window of time that I figured that I really should try to get my hands on a Cena US spinner, but as was often the case when I decided to go for certain blets, they were already no longer manufactured.

Figures Toy Company lost the rights to make WWE blets, and those that existed on the second hand market were priced to the moon, and I know what my limits are on a blet, much less one that I want more for a joke and irony than actual want.  I’d watch eBay auctions for legitimate ones whenever they’d show up, but then they’d all always soar past what I’d be willing to pay for it, and there were tons of Pakistani knockoffs of them that I had to make sure to not get duped on.

Eventually, I realized that the Cena US Spinner was a blet that probably had a high chance of getting re-released by the WWE Shop, seeing as how I’d observed a parade of older blets getting re-released instead of the NXT UK Tag, drawing my ire endlessly.  I figured the Cena US Spinner would probably see the light of day before the NXT UK Tag in fact, but I figured it would eventually be re-released at some point, because it seemed like all old blets were headed in that path.

Which brings us to today, just days after finding out that the NXT UK Tag blet was finally being replicated, I see a banner show up, announcing the pre-orders for the replica re-release of, the John Cena US Spinner blet.  

And just like that, after boasting about how the NXT UK Tag wouldn’t even be coming out of my blet money from surveys, the WWE Shop has to up and drop yet another blet that I had been casually keeping my eye out for, creating a scenario where I will eventually have to dip into my hard-earned blet money after all.

Also, I’m currently sitting at needing to mount three new blets to my wall.  The NXT UK Tag would make it four, and if and when I eventually get my Cena US Spinner, that’ll make five.  Which is a pain in the ass because then I’ll need to buy more wall snaps, which are only sold in packs of 25, which means I’ll end up with extra snaps enough for eleven more blets afterward.

I’ve basically given up on saying that I’ll ever be finished, because let’s be real here, there will always be new blets to come out, or a change in opinion, or a killer sale, that will result in me buying just about every blet there is out there.  

Such is the life, of a blet collector.

lol China

Where all-you-can-eat doesn’t mean all-you-can-eat: man blacklisted from all-you-can-eat barbecue restaurant because he was eating too much

Frankly, there really is no place in the world that this could’ve occurred at then China.  China has no regard for rules, and they’re not above applying draconian outcomes onto their own people, especially when money is involved.  It’s just unfortunate for all parties involved, that The Internet caught wind of this story, because now it’s basically a meme, with all the observational humor armchair comedians that are coming out of the woodwork to chime in their two cents.

Naturally, the initial favor goes and should go, to the customer, whom was capitalizing on the general concept of all-you-can-eat, and it really is not his problem if the restaurant’s golden ratio of food consumed versus cost of meal begins sliding in his favor because he’s a monster capable of consuming large quantities of food.  As far as the restaurant goes, if they’re incapable of actually being all-you-can-eat, they probably shouldn’t be in business in the first place.

But then it’s revealed that the guy in question was a live-streamer, and then I feel like there’s a lot of context that kind of went missing in the bigger picture.  I think it’s safe to say that Mr. Kang here, was probably going to the restaurant, partially to eat a meal, but at the same time, ham shit up for his six viewers, by acting a little bit outlandish, and eating beyond normal, for the entertaining of others.  Now, from the restaurant’s standpoint, I can kind of lean towards them, because based on their description of how Mr. Kang would pick up the entire tray of prawns instead of using the tongs, that sounds like a dick move done deliberately, for the lulz, but is also fucking all other customers in the restaurant from getting any.

Sure, Mr. Kang wasn’t wasting any food, but at the same time I have a hard time believing that he was pounding away 3+ lbs. of pork trotters or downing 20-30 bottles of soy milk because he was just that hungry.  No, live-streamers are inherently attention whores, so he was probably stuffing his face for the camera, and most likely most definitely didn’t need to be eating that much food.

There are definitely ways to exploit buffets, most obviously being, don’t make a spectacle of yourself or draw attention to the fact that you’re trying to stay and eat the place out of business.  I used to see senior citizens at Old Country Buffets in the past, who undoubtedly were there for upwards of three hours plus, because they probably got in the door when it was senior-priced breakfast, but milked the clock to where the more expensive lunch options began emerging, and then had multiple meals while there.

But by making a spectacle of himself by grabbing entire trays, or running trains on soy milk, and undoubtedly bringing camera gear to his table, Mr. Kang ends up looking like a tool, the restaurant looks like assholes for denying someone all they can eat, and in the end, everyone loses, because lol China, of course.

Not going to lie though, all this thinking about Chinese buffets makes me miss the ever-living hell out of them.  Coronavirus be damned, I’m quite tempted to take the risk and go find some rando-China King Buffet and stuff my face stupid of lo mein, General Tso’s chicken, crab rangoons of doom and of course, chicken quesadillas.

The new era of college sports

A while back, I used to have the attitude that agreed with the notion that college athletes shouldn’t be getting paid to apply their talents under the banners of their respective schools, and that the education that they receive, should they actually choose to accept them, was compensation more than adequate in the tradeoff.

Things change though, and for every Cardale Jones that flaunts his hired gun status that gives no shits about a college education, are still countless other student athletes who are stalwarts at the college level, but the harsh reality is that they have very little to no actual future in professional ranks.  It’s those guys that that have helped change my tune when it comes to compensation for student athletes, because college is most likely going to be the pinnacle of their athletic careers, and it would be great if they could cash in on a modicum of it before their window of opportunity to earn, is shut.

So the news of the NCAA now allowing student athletes to start making money on their likenesses, endorsements and social media accounts is definitely a positive step in the right direction at a knee-jerk reaction, but at the same time, there’s a lot of gray area and things that could potentially go in an unsavory direction, that spurred this train of thought post.

Like I said, my knee-jerk reaction is one of positivity, and general happiness for all student-athletes who will now start to be able to make some money off of their sweat, efforts and contributions.  They won’t be explicitly being paid by their schools, which is still something that I agree should not be allowed, but it’ll be nice to know that an innocuous autograph session or them showing up to a local car dealership or restaurant to make an appearance can get them some punishment-free cash, just because they play some sport for their school.

The one thing I like the most from this is that I think it will help curb the culture of one-and-dones, in mostly basketball and football.  Fringe prospects that aren’t Zion Williamson or Trevor Lawrence-good might actually stick around for another year or two, and now have options to choose from whether or not it’s worth becoming a benchwarmer in the pros versus remaining a god on campus and cleaning up on endorsements and other profitable endeavors.

College-good athletes will be more likely to stick around four years, and not only will their teams benefit from having physically and mentally matured juniors and seniors on their squads, the ones that actually take life seriously might actually get educations and graduate legitimately, instead of a parade of paper African-American studies majors trying to survive illiterately in the world after college.

The benefit to this is that fringe contenders’ windows of contention might remain open a little bit longer, because key members of contending teams might stick around longer if they’re capable of earning while in college, instead of bolting for any Euroleague hoops or XFL or CFL if they can’t make it to the bigs directly. 

And it goes both ways when it comes to the power schools in the nation, because obviously schools with preexisting relationships with major companies will still get the lion’s share of top prospects, but if programs start to get a little crowded with upperclassmen staying in school, it’s going to funnel prospects or force incumbents into the transfer portal to go to other schools, which may or may not raise the amount of parity throughout college athletics.

But like I said, it’s not a perfect solution, and for all the good that’s possible, there’s still a lot of room for negative things to be or remain the case; like the aforementioned obvious aspect that the major schools with preexisting relationships with companies like Nike, UnderArmour and other relationships are still going to get the best prospects, due to their now-available opportunities for endorsements, so it will still probably feel like the rich will remain getting richer, while all the other schools will feel like they’re fighting over scraps.

And foolishly counterpointing one of my positives, programs like Duke will be tailor-made to probably do well under this new era of college sports, because as much as everyone loathes Duke, Duke is great at producing college talent.  Sure, a lot of it has to do with Coach K’s brainwashing, and he is allegedly on his way out, but the fact of the matter is that Duke rosters historically have been loaded with well-built teams that dominate the college level, and keeping these rosters mostly together for 3-4 years at a time might result in some return to prominence by the Dukes and other programs that operate in similar manners.

Finally, let us not overlook one of the more annoying outcomes of this development: the era of self-promotion and rise of obnoxious social media presences of student athletes now who are going to embark on missions to promote themselves, develop personas, brands and identities to try to monetize and make bank while they’re in college now.  If I had as much time to fart around on the internet and sports websites as I once did, I can only imagine how obnoxious things have the potential to be as college athletes across the nation will be getting up in our virtual faces trying to become famous so they can make money.

Either way, it’s ultimately a step in the right direction, with both positives and negatives up in the air, and the fact that it’s so new and unrefined, it’ll take all of two seconds for college athletes and the inevitable wave of agents that will prey on them, to find all sorts of loopholes and gray area for things to get muddy really fast.

But man, how much must it suck to be the graduating seniors of 2020/21’s NCAA athletes?  Sure Najee Harris probably was cleaning up on all sorts of under-the-table non-monetary compensation while winning a national championship for Alabama, but how salty do you think he’s going to be knowing that all the freshmen coming in are going to be able to make money without needing to hide and be as secretive as he once was?