Life Comes at You Fast
... But that's no excuse for such a long layoff from posting here. First off, meet Iggy! Allie and I adopted this half-Corgi half-Heeler in April. Her full name is Andrea Iguodogla and she loves socks, miniature tennis balls, and dryer sheets.
Sidenote: Wifey cut a deal with me where I get to name all of our dogs, and she gets the final say on the names all of our children. I know, I win this pretty easily here. Not only do I get more artistic license with dog names, but we will definitely have more dogs than kids.
In other news (why I wasn't writing): decided to buy a house, re-injured my neck (I learned my lesson: never rush a workout and always focus on form), played at churches for 10 straight weekends, decided to not buy a house, and had work send me all over our territory from Imperial, CA to Morenci, AZ... You get the picture.
I'm not as pessimistic about losing the lottery as the rest of the fanbase seems to be. Sure we didn't get a top 3 pick, but the three teams ahead of us (Celtics, Lakers, and Sixers) all need point guards. So we might get our choice of impact small forwards! I am a Jayson Tatum guy, but I'd be happy with Josh Jackson too.
On the bright side of tanking: we kept two extremely injury-prone players in Bledsoe and Chandler from getting hurt, while getting to see what Len and Ulis can do in expanded roles.
... Never mind.
Paramore's new album is out now, and sadly it is without one of my favorite bassists Jeremy Davis. His playing style was something I tried to emulate in my late teens/early 2o's, and he had some beautiful Gibson G3s.
Roy Mitchell-Cárdenas, the bassist for MUTEMATH, announced that he will no longer be touring with the band. Roy is one of my favorite bassists of all time, so I was sad at first. But I have so much respect for him because he is taking a step back so that he can be a more present dad to his 3 kids.
... Also never mind.
Housing and Perspective
I am not a very knowledgeable person as far as how the housing market and tax breaks are intertwined with poverty on a macroeconomic level. How Homeownership Became the Engine of American Inequality by Matthew Desmond of the New York Times is really eye opening piece with a cool historical note at the end.
And yet over the course of our history, there have been times when Americans embraced a politics of sacrifice. During World War II, families volunteered to pay more taxes, ration food and give blood to serve a higher purpose. And even today, in what can feel like an age of insecurity and self-preservation, some Americans have shown a willingness to take a personal financial hit to promote social mobility and equality. Take the people of Seattle: For 36 years, they have agreed to be taxed more to raise revenue for affordable-housing programs. Last August, 70 percent of Seattle voters agreed to the largest housing levy yet, one expected to raise $290 million over the next seven years. Contributions to the levy are based on home values; a family living in a $480,000 home (the city’s median value in 2015) pays an additional $122 a year in taxes. With that money, Seattle will fund emergency rental assistance, loans to first-time home buyers and the construction of housing units that must remain affordable for at least 50 years. Previous housing levies have generated over 13,000 affordable apartment units and enabled 900 low-income families to buy homes. The 2016 Housing Levy will do more because the residents of Seattle decided to invest in economic diversity and residential stability, sacrificing a pinch to help those in need.
Politics are so divisive right now, it feels like we are constantly at each other's throats. This made me feel a little better knowing that, as a whole, we still want to make progress as a society, even at our own expense. If you have the time, please take a few minutes and read the whole article. I promise it will be worth your time.
Eating- Tuck Shop
Wifey took me here for my birthday meal, so this recommendation is coming late. This was easily one of the best and most unique meals I have had in a long time. The menu is constantly changing (usually a good/fresh sign) and their cocktails are to die for. I had two different drinks with Japanese whisky, and citrus-brined chicken with a cheddar waffle. Take me back!
Drinking- Whistlepig 10 Year Rye and Del Bac
I recently tried Whistlepig 10 Year Rye at House of Tricks and I think I am looking to get myself a bottle.
Del Bac Classic (and Unsmoked) have always held a special place in my heart. Great price, local (Tucson, AZ), hints of vanilla and butterscotch... It's everything I would want in a whiskey.
Watching- Master of None
Late to the party, but we finally started Master of None. I finally understand the hype! The perfect combination of feeling real, being so funny, short episodes, and the great H. Jon Benjamin.
Final Thoughts- NBA Finals
It's like the end of a vacation. You're finally in your groove, getting used to a life of luxury, not having a care in the world, and then you get the reminder to check in for your flight. You start thinking about having to pack your bags, the long flight, the lines, the terrible airport food...
This is exactly how I feel about the end of the NBA season. There is going to be a large NBA/NFL sized hole in my heart until September (late October for NBA). So far my plans include watching all of the Lethal Weapon and Christopher Nolan Batman movies, and maybe going through HBO's The Night Of.
The Finals start tonight and it's the match-up everyone expected to see all season. No big surprises, just two super teams fighting for the Larry O'Brien trophy for the 3rd tim in 3 years.
One thought I can't shake is how 2015 LeBron put up 35.8 points, 13.3 rebounds, and 8.8 assists with a lineup of Matthew Dellavedova, Timofey Mozgov, Tristan Thompson, and JR Smith... and they managed to get 2 games from the Warriors (2 more wins than the Spurs, Jazz, and Trailblazers could get through this entire postseason).
Everyone knows that I am rooting for the Cavs. Biases aside, I don't think that the Warriors will be able to roll to a 4 game sweep or a 5 game gentleman's sweep. The safest bet, in my opinion, is Warriors in 6, but I am going to put my rooting interest in my pick and say Cavs in 6.
- The Cavs best 7 match up almost evenly with the Warriors best 7. Irving/Curry, LeBron/KD, Love/Green, Smith/Klay, Tristan/Zaza(or Iguodala).
- If both teams go into a switch-heavy defense (and they will), I think that we will have to see how well the Warriors avoid foul trouble. Both teams will set picks until they get the most desirable match-up. I would expect LeBron to try to get KD/Curry in the post and try to draw fouls to get them out of rhythm. LeBron is usually pretty good about avoiding foul trouble, let's see if KD and Draymond can stay on the court while still being able to contest LeBron's drives.
- I still think that the Warriors bench with Livingston, Iggy, and JaVale will have success against the Cavs. Livingston will make a point to attack Deron Williams, and the Cavs have no answer for JaVale rolling to the rim if Tristan Thompson is off the floor.
- As an obvious statement, the series will be better if everyone gets/stays healthy. Kyrie and Iguodala have the most recent injuries, and we don't know what is causing Klay Thompson's slump. Let's just hope for the best here
- Lastly, Ty Lue and Mike Brown are coaching in the Finals. Take that for data.
Ball is life. Hopefully, I will have time in the next week or so to do some more thoughts on how the games played out. As always, thanks for reading!