Sunday, November 30, 2008

Short 'n 'Sweet

Over the next few days I'm going to try writing shorter blog posts so I can actually get things down on "paper" and keep my thoughts moving. I've been tweeting fairly often, so I'm going to try and split up my time between Twitter and Blogger so both kids feel like they're getting their fair share.

Anyway, Juve won this weekend and that makes me very, very happy. I got my aspirin kicked multiple times today in FIFA and that makes me very, very upset. I haven't been on my game in the last couple days, but I pledge to regain form and resume normal mollywhopping tendencies as soon as the Lord of the Rings is over.

Quick side note: the Lord of the Rings was showing all day on TNT and I was kinda ecstatic about it. Nerd status!

Monday, November 24, 2008


A few weeks ago I noted that the demise of blogging had been forecasted by some prominent magazine (I forget what it is, but it's inconsequential at the moment). The publication stated that blogging would soon be completely replaced by Twitter and other such "microblogging" applications. When I read this, I immediately wrote (on my blog) that I wouldn't fall prey to such a thing, and I would maintain my blog as best I could.


I officially shortened what normally would be a half to full-page blog post to around 120 characters earlier today. I thought about writing a whole spiel about how the point of being a sneakerhead was to actually wear the sneakers you've worked so hard to collect, but I ended up condensing it to this short Twitter "tweet" (yes, you can laugh. I have, MANY times): "Isn't the point of being a sneakerhead to WEAR the sneakers, not just put them in boxes and never touch them again?" After I wrote the tweet, it took me a few seconds for it to set in and then I realized that I had fallen victim to convenience.

While I pledge to at least attempt (read: think about it for a half second) to continue to write real blog posts, from now on, if I do have a quick idea, it will go into a Twitter tweet (I just really like saying it) for a few reasons. Sometimes I really just don't have the time to write a full post. Sometimes I just don't feel like it. Sometimes it may work out better in a short idea than extrapolated to a full page. As such, whoever gets the urge can follow me on Twitter (username aawest), and if not, just look for my random blogging as you have (or probably haven't) up till now.

I used a lot of parentheses in this post.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Stuff People Like

I recently came across the website and book "Stuff White People Like", and it inspired me to write a few of my own "Stuffs". This is my exercise in social commentary through humor. If you're offended... Good. If not... Good.

Black People Like: Dressing White

It's important to understand that in today's world, dressing like white people is no longer unacceptable to black people. Black people began wearing clothes and doing activities previously considered "white" because they were tired of being left out of the loop. Recently, young (18-30) black men began wearing button downs, button ups, and sweaters with buttons (white people call them cardigans) as well as Lacoste or Polo caps and boat shoes. In order to wear these buttoned tops, bent-brim caps and boat shoes, black men are very careful to maintain the same percentage of improper grammar and semblance of "hood" status.

Black guys are very careful to never wear khakis with the ensemble unless they are appropriately baggy shorts or Dickies. Equally important to the clothes worn is the requisite posturing to let other black people know that they're still black even though the clothing may signify otherwise. Another important aspect of dressing white is to wear bright enough colors to let other black people know that the wearer has still retained his flamboyant "black" style.

If you see a black person wearing these clothes, it's always a good idea to compliment them on their style and tell them that the colors they're wearing "look great on them". This will give you some cool points with the black person and they may even invite you to a party with them.

More May Come

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Using auto-tune on everything. We're sick of it, and it's making real singers few and far between. It doesn't make you a singer, it just makes you someone with access to the technology.

Acting like that word that starts with "N" in public. You're messing it up for the rest of us that actually act like we have some sense. Plus it's really not cool anyway. Acting goofy from time to time is straight, but for the most part you only attract unwanted attention from the "P" (olice) and by default, we catch the fallout as well.

Touching my hair. I don't even like it when you ask to touch my hair. It was funny years ago when I was like 3 and I didn't know any better, but now it's just ignorant. I don't really care if you've never felt anything like it, it's not my job to educate you on the ins and outs of African-American hair. And when you say, "it's not like you have any hair anyway" it just proves my earlier point about your ignorance.

Kicking my ankles if I run by you on the soccer field. It kinda hurts and it doesn't prove your defensive skills at all. You just look like a donkey.

Sending me chain e-mails that mainly have to do with conjecture, hoaxes or ridiculous warnings. I have a mailbox limit and I don't feel like taking the time to delete all your useless emails. (The sole exclusions for this are Aunts, Uncles and other assorted family members, just because I don't want to hate on them)

Quitting in the 89th minute if I'm beating you in FIFA. At least have the decency to do it before the 70th minute so I don't have to waste all my time mollywhopping you and then not get any credit for it.

Dialing my number accidentally and then not having the decency to explain that it was a mistake when I answer it. It happens more often than you think, and it's very annoying when it happens repeatedly without any apology.

Asking me if I know Steph and if he's cool. Yes I do. Yes he is. But that doesn't make me any cooler or different for knowing him. He's a ordinary dude who happens to be extraordinarily good at the sport of basketball due to a blessed combination of natural talent and very hard work. And maybe I could get you a signed picture, but I'm absolutely not going to bother myself or the man for one.

Finally (for now): Stop bothering me. No specifics here; if you bother me, stop it. Cease. Desist. No más. That is all.

What If?

I've just decided to write a series (possibly ending after 1) of posts asking "what if" certain scenarios took place. For example, what if I suddenly grew a foot and gained 75 pounds?

If tomorrow morning I woke up and was 6'10", 240, I would immediately tramp to the nearest basketball court and proceed to dunk on every single person in the gym in turn. Pregnant mothers and small children would be first in line, followed closely by pre-pubescent girls and young wannabe ballers.

Next, I would grab a flight to China's Tianjin Province and simply stand in large crowds as small Asian men and women gawked at my new-found bulk. I would then hitch a ride over to Japan where I would pose as an NBA player and be treated as royalty by the uninformed.

Returning to the States, I would embark on a pimp-slapping rampage, daring anyone under the height of 6'0" to step to me, barring the presence of a firearm. Finally, I would sit down at the end of the day, and sing quietly to myself: "I wish I was a little bit taller..." all the while smiling surreptitiously and wondering if the following morning I would wake up as a 4'10", 100 lb masterpiece of proportional majesty.

More to follow.

Friday, November 14, 2008


I was watching Seinfeld (yes, Seinfeld the TV show) the other day, and I ran into a complex dilemma. I've started to actually enjoy the show and it's everyday ridiculousness. However, every time Michael Richards' character Kramer comes onto the screen, I'm simultaneously incensed and bent double with laughter. Herein lies the problem. I find the character of Kramer to be hilarious and brilliant. By the same token, I find Michael Richards to be absolutely detestable.

I can't seem to draw the line between the character of Kramer and the real-life person behind the character. I find myself laughing, but then being upset at myself for laughing. Nonetheless, I think I've solved my conundrum. I've decided that no matter what the person did, it doesn't matter because his on-screen persona is amusing and enjoyable. Michael Richards is not Kramer, and Kramer is not Michael Richards. As such, I will enjoy Seinfeld to the fullest.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Portrait of a Legend

A while ago, I began to watch the documentary "Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait". I grew up watching the French-Algerian legend, and it has been too long since I had the pleasure of watching him create art with the ball as his brush and the game as his canvas. In the film, a plethora of cameras follow Zidane through a 90-minute match against Villarreal in July of 2005. The multitude of camera angles, superb sound capture and close attendance to the temperamental genius opens a window into a footballing world I had never known.

Never before have I been able to so closely follow in the foosteps of any player, much less the giant prints of Zizou. With this film the audience is given a window into Zidane's ineffable brilliance, while simultaneously exposing slight quirks that somehow shrink the football giant into someone almost human.

As Zidane saunters around the pitch in the first half, he appears lazy and unconcerned at first glance. He walks more often than not, has the annoying habit of dragging his right foot on the ground distractedly, and appears unhappy at best. However, his poor body language belies the intense concentration visible in his face. Every few seconds he glances around the pitch, taking a mental "picture" of the events transpiring. It quickly becomes abundantly clear that while he does not have eyes in the back of his head as he often made it seem, he does indeed know everything going on within a 50 metre radius.

Amazingly, Zidane spends long periods of the first half with not even a sniff of the ball. When he does receive it, he rarely ever physically exerts himself because of his inestimably sublime first touch and vision. Far from being lazy, the man simply does not have to work corporeally because he has done the work mentally. He rarely ever speaks in the first half, but when he lets his voice be heard he calls quietly in the native language of the ball carrier, again betraying his brilliance, mental acuity and vision.

In the second half, Zizou springs to life. He commands possession of the ball more often and in more dangerous positions, he puts in a more physical effort, and above all, he seems to enjoy his surroundings. On occasion we see his lighter side as he jokes with Brazilian Roberto Carlos.

In a flash of brilliance out of apparent nothingness, Zidane takes on no less than three defenders with a burst of dribbling skill and acceleration and calmly dinks a lofted cross to the unmarked Ronaldo to finish. Less than a minute later, the notoriously short-fused playmaker charges late into a brawl to grab a Villarreal player by the neck. As abruptly as his anger boils over, it seems to dissipate as he calmly walks off the pitch, his job done and the day over. His legendary temper on display once again, he shows the dark side that comes with the grandeur. But the world would have it no other way.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Man's Best Friend

My sophomore year of high school, my brother went off to college and left me as the sole member of my "school" at home. For the first time, I was alone at home, and I had no companion to accompany me through my day. While my brother and I are and were very very different people, with different personalities and interests, we still got along very well. We fought often, as brothers will do (mostly ending with him kicking the crap out of me), but we did almost everything together. Every day at lunch we would watch Wishbone on PBS and then go play soccer tennis and/or basketball, stretching what was supposed to be a 30-minute lunch break well past the hour mark. We fought all the time, but we were always together.

Then the time came for my brother to go to college and I was left by myself at home. I wasn't out of sorts, but I did truly miss having Brent around to play with. After a while, I started to get relatively lonely, so I did what seemed most logical at the time. I asked for a dog. After much pleading and case-making my parents finally agreed to let me get a dog, and I embarked upon my lengthy search for the right companion. I finally settled on a beautiful Catahoula Leopard Dog I named Reina. She became my favorite diversion. I spent hours teaching her tricks, walking her and just playing with her in general. Finally the time came for me to go off to college and I had to leave her with my parents.

Whenever I returned home, Reina would greet me as if I'd been gone for 10 years and all she had done was wait for me. As soon as she smelled/heard/saw me get out of my car she would erupt into a chorus of barks, squeals and yells until I went to greet her. As I got older and my visits grew fewer and further in between, her enthusiastic greetings never changed. Since I was gone, my parents became the primary caregiver for Reina. They often would jokingly complain to me that I left "my dog" for them to take care of, but since the death of our other, older dog around 3 or 4 years ago, Reina has become more their dog than mine. I recently asked my dad if I could bring her to our new house in Charlotte and he hastily rebuffed my inquiry, giving the fact that we don't have a fenced-in backyard as reason to leave her with them. While we don't have a fenced-in backyard, I think the main reason she's staying is because my parents love her just as much as I do.

My thoughts recently have been preoccupied with getting a dog. While I can't afford it, and it wouldn't be prudent to get a dog at this time when I haven't actually settled down geographically and work-wise, I still want a dog with all my heart. I know I'm going to eventually get one, but I want one so badly it threatens to override all normal logic. I want another best friend of the quadruped variety.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Abnormal Psych(e)

I'm a weird dude, I'll admit it. I do a variety of things that most people would consider out of the ordinary, off the wall or just plain crazy. When I eat pizza, I take a bite of both corners of the crust before I proceed to the cheesy part. I listen to audio books on a regular basis. Especially when I'm driving, because it alleviates the boredom that normally pushes me to speed and get to my destination faster.

I love candy, but I don't really like most other sweets. In fact, I don't even like most candy. I only really like "clear" candy and Snickers.

I'm a serious grammar and spelling nazi. I am severely bothered by the use of "they're" for "their", "grammer" for "grammar" and the mother of all offenses: "definate" for "definite". I am more than willing to let it slide for those with whom I'm close, but it does still bother me. Especially when the offense is repeated chronically.

I get bored way too easily. If I don't actually concentrate on a sports game I will lose interest within 10 minutes and move on to something else. If a book doesn't draw me in, I find it very difficult to push through and make it worthwhile. I normally can't even play video games for more than a 30-minute spell straight through. Case in point: to beat me in Madden, a friend of mine simply set the quarters to 5 minutes each and waited for me to get bored in the second half so I'd stop caring and he could win easily. I ended up losing 70-66, or by an absurd score very close to that.

I have plenty of other idiosyncracies that make up my psyche, but I embrace most of them because they make me unique. Yes, I'm absolutely weird as can be. But yes, it makes me who I am. The coolest, weirdest guy named Christopher Aaron West who went to Davidson and graduated in 2008 that you'll ever meet.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Some Random Thoughts

What do Swedes do to stay so young-looking? I think if Olof Mellberg and the rest of his Swedish national teammates didn't have beards they'd look like the u-21 team.

Tiago Mendes of Juventus looks like Sarah Silverman of horrible television.

By the way, I love Juventus.

I really don't care about politics. I don't really care that Barack Obama won. Yes, he's (half) Black. But I don't know him. So quit asking me if I'm excited, because I really just don't care.

José María Gutiérrez, or Guti (of Real Madrid) is ridiculously left-footed and runs like a girl. But man, if he can't play a sublime through ball...

Marcelo (of Real Madrid) looks like a taller, light-skinned Katt Williams and hasn't improved nearly as quickly as I thought he would.

Royston Drenthe is what would happen if Edgar Davids and Whoopi Goldberg had a child.

And finally... If Javier Saviola (again of Real Madrid) hadn't been so stubborn he'd be getting regular minutes for a good club team and would probably still be in the Argentinean national team frame.

That's all for now.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Quality... Or Quantity?

Over the last couple days I just haven't felt like posting. It's not really that I didn't want to write, it's just that I hadn't bothered to think of anything creative, nothing ridiculous came to mind, and I just didn't feel like wracking my brain to dredge up something worth writing. That's when I came to the realization that I really don't have to write every day. I do prefer to put something out there at least 4-5 times a week, but if I don't have anything of "substance" (read: funny or ridiculous) to write, I'm not going to force it just for the sake of getting something on the page.

I refuse to simply blog for the sake of blogging. If I write something, it's going to be at least semi-interesting to me. I don't really care if anyone else thinks it's interesting because, frankly, I don't write what I think others will find interesting. I write what I think is interesting, and if others happen to agree, it works out for everyone. Long story short, if my blogging gets fewer and further between, you'll know why. However, I will continue my attempt to write 4-5 times a week.