Saturday, September 14, 2013

Next Victim of Technology: The Stadium Hot-Dog Vendor

The food isn’t always fresh or affordable, yet the roving vendor shouting “Peanuts!” or “Beer Here!” is a timeless cultural fixture at stadiums across the country, where millions of Americans have experienced the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.
Perhaps not for much longer, though.

MasterCard (MA) is rolling out a digital app called QkR (pronounced “quicker”) that, among other things, could streamline the process of ordering food at a stadium. It’s currently being tested at Yankee Stadium in New York, in Section 130 (field level, left-field line, regular ticket price $83-$105). The system is already up and running in stadiums in Ireland and Australia, and it’s based on technology that’s essentially proven. So it seems likely to catch on in American venues unless fans reject it.
The MasterCard technology would civilize the current unruly system. From your seat, you’d use the QkR app on your smartphone to scan one of those puzzle-like quick-response codes on the seatback in front of you. That would call up the stadium’s concession menu and indicate where, exactly, you’re sitting. You’d tap on your phone to order your hot dog, pretzel, beer or gelatinous nacho dip. Your order would materialize at a nearby concession stand, and the charge would be billed to your MasterCard account. A runner would deliver the food to your seat once it’s ready.

Bowling Green’s Paul Senn made one of the best punt blocks you’ll ever see (GIF)

If you're fortunate enough to block a punt, the ball usually deflects wildly and there's a mad scramble to prevent the receiving team from recovering the ball and advancing it further.

There was no mad scramble when Paul Senn blocked a punt in the first quarter against Indiana on Saturday. Why? He simply caught it off the foot of Indiana punter Erich Toth and ran it in for a touchdown.
It was an incredible play. Senn escaped the first line of Indiana blocking and had a free run at Toth. He was so close that Toth ended up basically kicking it into Senn's stomach. Senn sucked it up like a vacuum cleaner and was off for a 56-yard touchdown.
Punt block of the year? Definitely. The only way to top Senn's play is if a player was able to snatch the ball from a punter's drop. Get on it, NCAA special teamers.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Hey Beer Man! meet "Can Head" - The Human Suction Cup?

The Cleveland Indians were up 14-3 in the 9th inning against the Chicago White Sox on Thursday night, the game was pretty much over and my remote that was on the other side of the room was the only reason why I didn’t change the channel. I’m glad I didn’t because out of nowhere this guy appeared on my TV. (he wasn't wearing Cubs gear though)

The baseball fan known as “Can Head” had not one, not two but three beer cans plus a bottle of water stuck to his head. I decided to Google the man they call “Can Head” and I found out this real life super hero’s real name is Jamie Keeton, of Chicago, Ill. Unlike a juggler who balances items on his head, Keeton’s skin acts like a suction cup, holding aluminum cans, plastic and glass bottles, and other objects. Can Head is one of four worldwide! A reason why he's been dubbed by some as The Human Suction Cup and has a huge following on Facebook.

It all started about two decades ago, shortly after having his head shaved, Keeton accidentally discovered the ability, he said, explaining he was at a ball game, cooling his head with a cold drink, when one of the players hit a homerun. He threw up his hands and then realized, because of the people snickering around him, that the can was stuck to his head! He soon realized that objects not only stick to his head but also his hands, back and stomach.  Keeton’s body stays a constant 100 degrees Fahrenheit, and the pores in his skin take in a much higher quantity of oxygen than other human bodies do. What’s great about this is that his skin doesn’t wrinkle. Here’s a local story Marcus Leshock of WGNTV did on “Can Head”
I’m sure Jamie Keeton aka “Can Head” will become a national hit before we know it so “STICK AROUND"!!!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Texans safety Ed Reed receives walker as a birthday gift from teammates

(Greg Hurst's Twitter page)
Houston Texans safety Ed Reed has the sympathy from every person who grew up watching the original Transformers, Voltron, Mister Rogers, The Great Space Coaster and ALF.
Reed turned 35-years old on Wednesday, which is only old if you cannot recite the chorus to a Justin Bieber song right now for $1,000. Considering Texans cornerback Bradon Harris was 12-years old when Reed was drafted in 2002, it is easy to see why his teammates consider 35 to be over-the-hill.
That is why Reed’s teammates decided to surprise him with a walker as a birthday gift on Wednesday.

According to Daniel Gotera of KHOU 11, Reed’s teammates considered purchasing him a cake in the shape of a Hall of Fame jacket, but humor ended up winning out. Oh, those young kids.
“Some guys don’t take it as well as he’s been taking it, but it’s pretty good,” Texans defensive end J.J. Watt told KHOU 11. “He likes to joke about it too. It always makes it more fun when the guy receiving the jokes is playing along.”
Reed, don’t worry.
Those of us with authentic MC Hammer pants in our closet support you.

NFL Star Arian Foster: 6 Things I'll Try to Teach My Daughter

By Arian Foster, Houston Texans running back

 Pro football player Arian Foster and daughter Zeniah. (Arian Foster)I remember when I first got the call from my girlfriend (who's now my wife), telling me that I was going to be a father. Her voice cracking, tears brewing, she laid it on me. It was news that would change the course of our lives forever. What the hell was I going to do? All I could think was I was a 23-year-old without a clue about how to raise a kid. I had no job, just a tryout with an NFL team.
At the time, I was chasing a 7-year-old kid's pie-in-the-sky dream of being a professional football player (a dream that has crushed the hopes of 99 percent of children who have ever attempted it). So I guess you could say I'm one of the lucky ones that I not only hit the genetic lottery, but had people around me who believed in my dream. I had also somehow had the luck and wherewithal to keep my nose clean and do just enough in school to get by. And I had a wonderful woman looking at me with love and support, who must have been wavering back and forth herself. That's it. That's all I had. 
When my daughter Zeniah arrived, I had a little ball of life staring at me. How could I teach her that hard work separates winning from losing when I leisurely procrastinated my way through life? How could I teach her to dream when I didn't put everything I had into mine? How could I teach her to be a loving kind human spirit when at the time I was so bitter at life (I had just been passed on by every team in all seven rounds of the NFL draft) that my motto was "turn your back on the world and let them stab." Hypocrites don't make good superheroes and that's what parents are supposed to be ... superheroes. So I vowed to unlearn what I thought to be truth and completely humble myself to this experience.
I've thought long and hard about the values that I want to try and teach her. I'm sure this list will change as we both grow, but as of now this is what daddy wants his princess to learn from him before she tucks him away into her memory.

1. Happiness. This is probably the most cliché virtue on the list, but the most pivotal to her success. She needs to understand that "success" is a voyage, not an "x" on a map. I believe strongly that smiles are contagious, so I fill my home with as much laughter as possible. I do this in hopes that this mindset bleeds into her heart. You can't teach happiness, per se, but you can teach perspective and let her see that the situation she is born into is unique and the things she is accustomed to are not everyone's reality. I grew up in some rough circumstances, but in a very honest and humble way, was content with what I did have because I knew there were others out there that had less than me. This leads into the next thing I need my princess to understand.

2. The value of a dollar. I remember sometimes taking sponge baths as a boy because the water had been turned off, or my mother crying and asking me to go to bed at dinnertime because there was no food. But the most vivid memories I have were things like when my dad let me wear his favorite hat on my 8th birthday while he taught me how to make perfect scrambled eggs (which I would challenge anyone to a cook-off with). Or when my parents wanted to spoil us, we'd go to Blockbuster to pick out a movie and have family movie night. Moments like those I will hold in my memory bank for as long as my blood pumper is pumping. So how do I teach the daughter of a millionaire what money even is? The best way I've found for now came up after she asked for a Dora the Explorer video game that cost $34. I explained to her as best I could that daddy and mommy work hard to get these things that we call dollars. If she wanted it, we'd get it for her, but she had to earn it. We told her she had to do "chores" and every time she completed a task we marked a tally on a piece of paper hanging on the fridge. When she got to 34 "chores", we'd buy the Dora game. She was so excited, and so was I. She really understood and took to the concept of earning and the fact that one chore meant one step closer to getting that game.Foster on the field. (Getty Images)

3. Know your why. Any time anyone comes up to me with any kind of idea or business proposition, I always ask them "Why?" It seems simple, but it's actually an intricate question. Nine times out of ten, if someone's why is to make money, they'll fail at what they are trying to do. Here's why I believe this: "Successful" people are usually self-vindicated people. They don't need pats on the back. They don't need compliments. The merit of their work is endorsed by what they see in the mirror. They drive themselves until they are satisfied. People who are monetarily motivated often tire of their occupations and eventually lose focus. But if you are in love with what you do day in and day out, it's not work. Every day you're adding a piece of joy to your ethos. So find your passion, and fall in love with your why.

4. Kindness. It is a virtue that you must have if you are around me. Negative energy sucks the life out of people, and we're here to smile! You must treat people kindly. No one is any better than you are and you are no better than anyone else. We are all doing the best we can to figure out this thing we call life, so humble yourself to the fact that you know very little. I'm no different. I know very little, but I do my best to learn. I've learned things from a man with a PhD, a man who lived under a bridge, and a child. Treat everyone with kindness. It goes a long way. I was taught that people will rarely remember what you tell them, but they will always remember how you made them feel. In that same breath I'll let her know not to let people take advantage of her. Weak people prey on weak people. I'm not into the turning-the-other-cheek business. I firmly believe there are times when people must stand their ground. Pick your battles wisely, but don't initiate any unwarranted hate.

5. Men and her worth. (loads shotgun) A sore subject for any man with a daughter. I will teach her that she is a young goddess. Help her understand her worth. Let her know that she must hold every man accountable for who they are and how they act towards her. There will be a day when I give her away, and they say that a woman spends her life looking for her father in her groom, so until that day I will try to be the example of a man that she eventually will seek out. Men tend to be motivated by one thing. Don't fall victim to a prince charming. If he cares for her, he'll act accordingly. If not (aims shotgun), well, I guess it just wasn't meant to be.

6. The flying spaghetti monster. There are billions of people on Earth with hundreds of religions and sects that trickle off each other. I will never tell her what to believe in. I know parents are very influential on kids' spiritual beliefs and that can be a positive or negative thing. I can give her a basic understanding of religions when she starts showing interest and asking questions. But I will remain silent otherwise. How can I make a young mind believe this is the truth for them when they don't yet have the capacity nor the cognitive desire to delve into something like this? If she shows interest I would advise her to fully investigate a religion and see if it fits her. And if she chooses none of the above, I'll be fine with that as well. The values I instill in her should guide her to her decision. What's most important, I believe, is to support her decision no matter what.

Arian Foster is a loving father, devoted husband, philosopher, artist, poet, philanthropist, health warrior, and fashion enthusiast. He also is a three-time Pro Bowl running back for the NFL’s Houston Texans and will star in the upcoming Ivan Reitman film "Draft Day." He currently lives with his wife, Romina, 4-year-old daughter Zeniah, and 4-month-old son Khyro in Houston.  

Seahawks to have undercover police in 49ers gear!!!

(USA Today Sports Images)
The Seahawks sent a warning to their fans: If you're considering threatening that guy in the Patrick Willis 49ers jersey to a fight, there's a chance he's going to boot you out of the stadium and have your season tickets revoked.Seattle announced that they will have undercover police officers roaming the stadium wearing jerseys of opposing teams this season, in order to detect unruly behavior and take proper action.
"We have great fans," Seahawks president Peter McLoughlin said in a statement. "Our goal is to ensure a safe environment for all in attendance, including visiting team fans."
The announcement comes just before the Seahawks face the 49ers on Sunday night, in one of the most intense rivalries in the NFL.
The idea of having police wear the jersey of the opposing team is pretty brilliant.

There's no reason a fan should feel threatened when he goes to see his team play a road game. Two years ago, a San Francisco Giants fan was so severely beaten after a game at Dodger Stadium that he suffered brain damage and didn't return home until this June. Nobody wants a repeat of that.
Among the things the Seahawks don't allow is "verbal or physical harassment of opposing team fans." Those who violate the Seahawks fan code of conduct have to complete a four-hour online educational course, at the cost of $75, before they can return to the stadium. For the most egregious behavior, season tickets may be revoked.
The Seahawks have good fans and it shouldn't be a problem for most to root for their team in the most anticipated regular-season game of the season without acting inappropriately. For anyone who does get a little rowdy, just remember that the person you're thinking about harassing might not be a 49ers fan after all.

Maryland man’s $300 storage auction surprise: A locker full of Dikembe Mutombo swag

It's the kind of "Storage Wars" story that would make Dave Hester proud -- some guy in Maryland bought a unit for $300 at a storage auction recently only to find more Dikembe Mutombo memorabilia than you can shake a giant finger at.

The winning bidder is Adrian Petrus ... who competed for the contents of a forceclosed unit -- and just like on "Storage Wars," Adrian had no idea what was inside.

So you can imagine how pumped he was when he opened the locker and realized the whole thing was packed full of Mutombo items -- signed basketballs, shoes, jerseys,  trading cards and photos of Dikembe with celebs like Michael Jackson and Nelson Mandela

The locker also contained works of art painted and signed by Mutombo's brother.

So who would abandon such an incredible cache of Dikembe stuff?

Turns out, the unit belonged to one of Dikembe's brothers ... who lost the locker recently after missing several rental payments.

TMZ was told the brother had gone back to the Congo to deal with family issues in the wake of his father's death -- and simply forgot to make his locker payments. Sucks. 

Petrus tells us .. once he realized what he had, he reached out to Dikembe to try and make a deal to return the items ... but never heard back.  So, naturally, the next step ... is eBay.

TMZ reached out to Dikembe for comment -- but so far, we haven't heard back from the big man ... he was too busy getting a humanitarian award.

Monday, September 9, 2013

One Direction singer injured in Charity match

There were 60,000 people at Celtic Park for Stiliyan Petrov's emotional charity match, but all anyone talked about after it was over was how Aston Villa's Gabriel Agbonlahor knocked One Direction singer Louis Tomlinson out of the game. Former Celtic and Aston Villa midfielder Petrov, who is in remission from leukemia, assembled a team including the likes of John Terry, Dimitar Berbatov, Gareth Barry and other footballers and celebrities to face a Celtic squad including Henrik Larsson and Neil Lennon.
 Early in the second half, with Petrov's side up 3-1 (they would go on to win 5-3), the Petrov XI's Agbonlahor knocked Tomlinson to the ground while attempting to take the ball off him. It wasn't the hardest of hits — and it shouldn't have been a problem for someone who recently signed for Doncaster Rovers — but for a diminutive boyband member, it was apparently like getting hit by a train.
Dazed and limping, Tomlinson asked to come off. And then he vomited into his hand.
Some members of One Direction's hardcore fanbase decided to try and defend Tomlinson by making death threats against Agbonlahor on Twitter because they're teenagers and take silly things far too seriously.

"It was one of those things," said Agbonlahor of the incident. "I'll apologise to Louis when we meet up with everybody after the game."
Agbonlahor will likely be enshrined in the English Football Hall of Fame on Monday for his contribution to the game.

Oakland Raiders quarterback Terrelle Pryor takes out sideline official!!!!

Terrelle Pryor showed some impressive stuff in his second NFL start on Sunday. After an early pick, he rebounded and gave the Oakland Raiders a lead in the second half before the Indianapolis Colts ultimately held on for a 21-17 victory.
Not surprisingly, it was Pryor's rushing prowess that was the biggest thorn in the Colts' side.
Although Pryor didn't make a first down on this 5-yard rush in the third quarter,it did set up a field goal to cut the Colts' lead to 14-10.But what was also notable about the play: Pryor absolutely smashed one of the sideline officials who looked to be about triple Pryor's age.
In the end, though, it was Pryor and the Raiders who felt the crunch as their impressive comeback attempt came up short in Indy. But Pryor impressed pretty much everyone who watched. Despite the two picks — one early that was a de facto punt and one in the waning seconds as he tried to make a play — he threw for 217 yards and two TDs and ran for 113 more yards.
The Raiders’ starting quarterback job appears to be his until further notice.

Tennessee Titans’ Darius Reynaud make embarrassing mistake to start season

The optimism of the new season can be replaced by cursing and tears before a team even runs a play.
Ask any Tennessee Titans fan, who was already holding their head in their hands at about 1:01 p.m. ET on opening day.
The opening kickoff by the Steelers was handled by Darius Reynaud. Seemed innocent enough. His feet were on the goal line, but he wasn't aware of that. So he took a step back. Oh, no.
When Reynaud took a knee in the end zone, he handed the Steelers a safety, because he fielded the ball outside of the end zone. Pittsburgh led 2-0 to begin the season without getting a tackle or gaining a yard.
The good news is this: It got better for the Titans. From that point until the final two minutes of the game, they shut out the Steelers and pulled off an improbable 16-9 victory, and everyone can laugh about Reynaud's gaffe now.
So the 2013 Tennessee Titans can attest, first impressions aren't always that important.

Bill Leavy admits officials messed up downs in 49ers-Packers game

During Sunday’s 49ers-Packers game, there were offsetting penalties after Packers linebacker Clay Matthews hit 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick out of bounds at the end of a run.
Matthews was penalized and so was 49ers tackle Joe Staley, which should have led
to fourth down for the Packers. The officials ordered a replay of third down, however, and the 49ers scored a touchdown on the third down that shouldn’t have been and won the game 34-28.
On Football Night in America, Mike Florio said that we might hear from the league acknowledging that a mistake had been made. Referee Bill Leavy has made just such an acknowledgement.
“On the play where the quarterback went out of bounds and was hit late out of bounds. And then there was a subsequent hit by a San Francisco player. The down should have counted,” Leavy said after the game in quotes provided by the 49ers. “The penalties were both dead ball, and they should have offset at the spot where the runner went out of bounds. And it would have been fourth down.”
There’s no way to know how the game plays out if the correct ruling had been made, but the fact that it came in the second quarter makes it a little easier to accept than if it had happened on the last play of the game.

The Chiefs’ victory over the Jaguars was the first 28-2 score in NFL history

Leave it up to a couple of 2-14 teams from the year prior to make some history on the NFL's opening weekend of 2013.
The Kansas City Chiefs' 28-2 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars was the first time in NFL history that a game has ended with that final score.
As you can imagine, games where teams only score a safety are quite rare, and it was the 37th game and first since 1993 when a team finished with just two points on the scoreboard.
Yes, the Jaguars' offense was that putrid. Jacksonville had two turnovers, gave up six sacks and had just 178 yards of total offense. The Jaguars scored their points on Sunday on the Chiefs' first possession of the game when they blocked a Dustin Colquitt punt and the ball rolled out of the end zone.
Chiefs-Jaguars was also one of three games on Sunday involving safeties, though in the case of the Titans and Jets, they each were able to score more points on offense.
Here are some more safety points of interest:
• The 28-2 scoreline is the 19th NFL score combination involving a team only scoring a safety.
• The most common score combinations are 2-0 and 14-2, which have happened five times each. Those 2-0 games? The Akron Pros over the Buffalo All-Americans in 1923, the Kansas City Cowboys over the Buffalo Rangers in 1926, the Frankford Yellow Jackets over the Green Bay Packers in 1928, the Packers over the Chicago Bears in 1932, and the Bears over the Packers in the most recent game in 1938.
• That 1993 game was a 7-2 win for the New England Patriots over the Cincinnati Bengals. The Patriots' touchdown came on a pass from Drew Bledsoe to Ben Coates.
• The most lopsided win involving a lone safety was the Los Angeles Rams' 45-2 wins over the Baltimore Colts.
• The most common score in NFL history is 20-17, which has happened 240 times. However, the scoreline didn't happen during Sunday afternoon's slate of games.