Ryan Welton

Sports + Digital + Music + Life

Monthly Archives: August 2018

Paco’s Tacos might have the best tortillas in America

0

It’s Labor Day weekend 2018, and for the second straight year, Kristi and I are taking a little vacation.

Last year, it was Albuquerque.

This year, it’s Southern California.

And it’s my first time in Los Angeles. My first impression is that it’s a city deeply rooted in the 1950s and 60s. A lot of the architecture hasn’t been updated at all since then – and that’s not necessarily a bad thing!

This was also my first time to land at LAX. Kristi and I rented a car through Budget, which is an awful company (all rent-a-car companies are poor, and I can’t wait until there’s an Uber-of-that-world).

But we survived.

And then we asked the Budget attendant about places nearby to eat.

She had a list. On that list was a Mexican joint I had never heard of: Paco’s Tacos. It could turn out that this place is a total chain, but on their website, I’m only seeing two locations, both in California.

Including one location right near the airport.

The first thing I noticed when we walked into the place was that it didn’t smell very good. The door is situated near the bathrooms, and they had some kind of plumbing issue.

Don’t let your nose fool you though. Have patience.

The host led us to a back room that was virtually empty. We got there well before lunch rush.

And then a waiter brought us homemade chips and a salsa that would rip paint off of metal. It was glorious and hot. For a mainstream type of restaurant, this was the hottest salsa I’d ever eaten.

They also had a station where two women were making homemade flour tortillas from scratch. Kristi and I devoured a stack of them with the help of some sweet cream butter.

And now I’ll stop.

The rest of the experience was good but ordinary. Tamales were good. Enchiladas were a-ok.

But for the chips and salsa and tortillas alone, I’d rate Paco’s Tacos as pretty much the best Mexican place I’ve been to in a long while.

You just have to get past the bathroom smell.

Pittsburgh baseball pilgrimage capped with visits to PNC Park

0

Of all the places I’ve traveled to in the past decade, no place has surprised me as much as Pittsburgh.

I picked the Steel City three years ago as a baseball destination, a vacation to end the summer. I had never been to Pennsylvania, and I think I was fascinated by the city having watched Steelers games over the years and a few WTAE newscasts as part of my employment with Hearst Television. Plus, a friend of mine is from Pittsburgh, and I had heard a lot about the city from her over the years.

Didn’t make much of an itinerary aside from two baseball games, a Friday night and Saturday day game against the world champion San Francisco Giants. The Friday night game was a chance to watch the great Madison Bumgarner pitch, and Saturday a chance to watch Gerrit Cole.

I’ll blog about my other Pittsburgh experiences soon, including a visit to Primanti Bros., the Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum, the Andy Warhol Museum and a trip up Duquesne Incline.

However, for now, I present to you PNC Park.

img_0468img_0475

First of all, I knew it was going to be a good day when I was able to negotiate a deal for an all-day parking spot. There was this shaded parking area under a bridge, and it was supposed to be $15 through 6 p.m. and extra for Pirates parking, but I got there by lunch time and told the attendant my situation: I’m a tourist coming to see Pittsburgh, and it’s my intention to be downtown all day, eat at local establishments, root on the Pirates and take a crap ton of photos.

He told me to enjoy my stay in Pittsburgh and gave me the stub that would cover me through the Pirates game.

My first stop was Mullen’s Bar & Grill. I picked it because it was pretty big and had lots of TVs tuned to sports. It was noon, and I was on vacation, so of course I had a beer with lunch.

img_0430img_0427img_0425

But I didn’t have just any beer.

I had a Yuengling, my first. Yuengling is a Pennsylvania institution.

img_0428

My taste buds sensed the strong carbonation and robust flavor and were sent to beer heaven. I hate to describe it this way, in 2018, but it tasted like a manly beer. Drinking it made me want to chop wood and work on my car.

Mullen’s is within a couple blocks of the ballpark, and I noticed that the district was already busy with people, early in the afternoon. Mostly it was business people going to lunch, but the party atmosphere at PNC Park ramped up quite early, rocking and rolling by 3 or 4 p.m.

I spent a good chunk of the afternoon at the Andy Warhol museum, which didn’t allow cameras. Of all the artists whose legacy would support allowing randos to take photos and video of their work, it would have been Andy. He would have turned that video into art. I think it’s crazy that museums don’t encourage photos and videos. Crazy.

Alas, I didn’t know that much about Warhol going in and came out of it feeling like I had learned a lot and also understanding why he was such a vital modern artist. Highly recommend a visit, even though I have zero evidence as to why it was awesome. I’ll just say this: he was a beautifully weird, interesting cat. And he loved Pittsburgh.

Enough “culture.” Lol. Pittsburgh surprises many visitors in how significant its art scene is. This article from the Washington Post details the city’s public art scene.

In terms of cool factor, the only city that has compared with Pittsburgh, for me, was San Francisco. This is a strong segue back into sports because AT&T Park (Giants) is my favorite baseball park in America, and PNC is a very close second.

PNC Park is connected to downtown Pittsburgh by bridges sitting over the Three Rivers of Pittsburgh — the Allegheny, the Monongahela and the Ohio. There’s one bridge that everybody walks on to get from downtown to the park, a pedestrian pilgrimage unlike any other in sports. It’s named for one of the greatest humanitarians in sports history: Roberto Clemente.

Clemente died on Dec. 31, 1972, in a plane crash that should have never happened. The plane was overloaded and run by a super shady company. Clemente was headed to Nicaragua to help ensure that food donations were making it to the people who needed it there after a deadly earthquake.

You can’t go to Pittsburgh and go to a Pirates game and not honor Clemente.

So, by this time it’s 4 p.m., and happy hour is already cranked up to ‘We Are Family’ levels across the blocks that surround the Pirates’ baseball cathedral. Hours after I tried my first Yuengling, I was sipping my first Leinenkugel (“Berry Weiss”), people watching and looking for deals from Pittsburgh vendors.

And then I heard a cover band playing some INXS.

OK, that didn’t catch my attention as much as did this guy, who I presume is probably a banker or an accountant letting loose for the weekend. He was nice and toasty and dancing his ass off.

Fast forward to 7 p.m. and the march into PNC Park. My seats for the Friday night contest were behind home plate and high up, my favorite vantage point for watching a baseball game.

I sat next to a 60-some-odd-year-old woman and her crew and had my first pierogi.

Overrated. Don’t get it.

It’s a dumpling, a Polish ravioli.

Don’t @ me. When I visited Camden Yards the next year, my food treat was kettle chips with some kind of creamy crab cake concoction on top. There is no comparison between the two.

But I needed to try a pierogi, and I did and it was underwhelming.

The park and familial atmosphere of PNC Park was not underwhelming, however. It was fantastic. I felt like I was rooting on a local high school team. The fans were nice. Everybody describes St. Louis Cardinals fans as being the ultimate in nice, but I would submit to you that they haven’t visited Pittsburgh. Pirates fans, at least the mid-2010s variety, were friendly without the cockiness.

And this Pirates club was 72-47 to begin the weekend homestand. They were a contender.

Bumgarner and the Giants won the first game, 6-4. For my second game, a Saturday afternoon tilt for national TV, I sat right behind home plate down low. I could see the dust and chalk pop from the catcher’s mitt each time Gerrit Cole rocketed a fastball down the middle.

And instead of sitting by a friendly older lady, I was sitting next to the guy I’ll call the “old sea captain.”

He looked a little like Howard Schnellenberger. He smelled of cigars and sin.

And he told baseball stories from days gone by, so many and with such detail that I wouldn’t doubt it if he turned out to have been a former Major Leaguer. The Saturday game blazed by pretty quickly, a pitcher’s duel highlighted by seven really strong innings from Cole.

A wild pitch in the top of the eighth helped San Francisco even the score at 2-2, and then all was quiet until the bottom of the ninth when with two outs, Starling Marte decided to start the ‘Marte Party’ (pronounced mart-AY part-AY) a little bit early.

Bam. Gone. Celebration at home plate.

And then the Pirates raised the Jolly Roger to indicate a win.

I haven’t been to all the baseball cathedrals in this great land, but there has been none better in terms of atmosphere, location, beauty, architecture and fun than PNC Park.

If only the team could be better more consistently.

Big Brother 20: The one houseguest you don’t want to sit next to in the Final 2

0

In the couple weeks since I blogged about Big Brother 20 being Tyler’s or Sam’s to lose, a lot has happened.

Warning: veto spoilers ahead!

If you’re caught up as of August 21, you know that HoH Faysal nominated ally Scottie in a fit of jealousy disguised as strategy. Next to Scottie was Brett, and I say “was” because Brett won the veto and took himself off the block.

Kaycee was the replacement, but she’s going nowhere. Scottie will head to the jury house Thursday night.

But them’s the boring details.

Tyler and Angela are now an item, Hilton Head’s own. #Tangela. The only thing that might creep me out a little is that Tyler complimented her by saying she smelled like a baby. Lol.

But that’s not even what I’m talking about.

What I’m talking about is J.C. and Brett.

The more I watch this Big Brother season play out, the more I think one of these guys is going to win it all. J.C. has been highly influential while maintaining house popularity.

If he’s in the Final Two, he might win 9-0.

And Brett has been a devilish genius, deftly working both sides of the house and winning when he needs to.

Tyler has done nothing to dim his Big Brother shine, but Sam has. Self-pity sessions combined with a recent medical episode have caused some to doubt her will to stay in the house.

Other competitors will sniff that mess out.

In the meantime, J.C. has influenced votes and nominations the past three weeks and done it with the skill of a diplomat.

Eventually, the house has to get wise to Tyler and Brett, if they can keep them from winning the rest of the competitions.

But I’m here to tell you: if J.C. Mounduix ends up in the Final 2, he’s winning $500,000.

Easy, easy, easy: How to play “Rosanna” by Toto

0

One of my first memories of pop music growing up was being at Camp Egan in Tahlequah, in the pool, and hearing Toto’s “Rosanna.” Sure, I was at “church camp,” but let me assure you that it was closer to something out of “Fast Times At Ridgemont High” more than it was anything our parents hoped it would be.

And “Rosanna” was the jam of the summer.

I didn’t know who this woman was or why she’d leave that poor man, causing him to “hurt so bad.” Then 30 years after thinking the song was about Rosanna Arquette, I learn she was coincidental to the masterpiece. Sure, Steve Porcaro was dating her, but David Paich wrote it about a long lost love and imprinted her name upon it because Steve wanted to divulge his love to her in song.

And then they broke up, and it became all too real.

This song was pretty much the moment I decided that music was awesome. I literally remember being in the pool, thinking two things: I can’t swim, and how awesome was church camp if Toto was its soundtrack!? I wish I was a better player in terms of technique. I’ll never be Toto-level good. I started playing the piano when I was three or four, whenever my dad started showing me flash cards with notes and chords. My dad was a professional musician, straight out of the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, and I’ve been fakin’ it for four decades.

But what I’ve lacked in technical skill I’ve more than made up for in passion.

So, I put together this tutorial to help other passionate musicians fake their way through “Rosanna” to impress somebody at work, the bar or maybe a girl named Rosanna.

The song starts in G, and you can chord between G and C in that opening shuffle.

First verse is G-F-Em, and then go to a C. I play it in here as a Bb/C, but really it should just be a C. That takes you to an F-Eb-Dm before a bridge of Gm-F/A-Bb.

The verse ends with a bang: Eb-Bb-F. You’ll have to watch the video to see how I do that little riff to get in the chorus.

I also address the almighty Toto “Rosanna” solo, which is way beyond my technical ability. However, I’ve got the framework down and describe it in my video. If you like piano tutorials, I hope you’ll come find me on YouTube at youtube.com/ryanweltonmusic because for every cover I do from here on out, I’ll also do a tutorial describing the EASIEST way to learn it. I might not give you the technically perfect way to play it, but you’ll be able to impress folks after five minutes with me — if you can play piano at all.

Fitness Hack: Using sports to pile on the steps

0

Since I’ve downloaded the Pedometer++ app, I’ve become a bit obsessed with checking my steps. Considering I have an iPhone and an Apple Watch, I’m not sure why I’m just now really attuned to how much movement I can produce in a given day, but there you go.

I topped 20,000 steps Saturday.

Weekends aren’t lazy for me. I’m go-go-go, whether it on personal projects or chores, and I tend to get more exercise, too.

If you read my blog last week, you’ll know I’m focused on walking at the moment to help ignite some weight loss and strengthen my Achilles tendons. I need to get in leg shape before I get back to running, and I’d like that temperature to get down a bit more, too. We’ve been enjoying upper 80s and lower 90s here in Oklahoma, quite the change from typical 100-degree days this time of year.

My Mom’s treadmill that I inherited is upstairs, and I’m using it every chance I get. I’ve found an easy, easy weekend hack to getting my steps up, too!

Walk during your favorite sporting events.

In my case, I follow Tottenham Hotspur, whose Premier League season started a week ago with a 2-1 win over Newcastle. Spurs won 3-1 over Fulham this weekend to top the league table.

And I walked on the treadmill for the entire match at an easy 2.8 speed.

img_8112

By 10:30 a.m., I was at 11,000 steps on my way to 20,000.

img_8156-1

Sure, I mowed the yard later in the day, which means I probably would have hit 10,000 regardless. However, I’ll take any opportunity I can get to push myself well beyond 10,000 steps — especially for those days when I can’t come close.

Sometimes work and life come first no matter what your fitness priorities are.

But what I’ve found is that if you have time to watch sports, you’ve got time to walk — and a soccer match at 90 minutes is totally doable, halftime and all.

#COYS

Quest to get back into running shape starts with walking

1

It was four years ago when I first got into running. I’ve run four or five 5Ks and three half-marathons, and I plan to run more for sure.

But for the moment, I’m walking. I don’t dare say ‘just’ walking because much of the latest research shows walking to be more effective for weight loss, which is precisely what I need to be able to get back into running shape, which is something I need both physically and mentally long-term. My running routine was fantasic until this colder-than-normal winter plus a bout of flu in January totally derailed me.

And then on the last Sunday in April, it was 70 degrees outside, which is way too hot for a half-marathon (truly), and my lack of proper training combined with a mild weight gain led to a much slower time for moi. I was happy to finish, but everything about my effort this year sucked. I thought I could work it mind-over-matter, but I actually needed to face facts.

I’m almost 48 years old.

I’m close to 220 pounds.

When I ran my fastest time in 2017 (2:48:00-ish), I was only 205, so I basically ran a half-marathon this year while carrying a sack of potatoes.

Mmmm, French fries.

Unfortunately, the circumstances surrounding me writing this blog and even walking in an effort to get back into shape was all the result of my mom passing away earlier this summer. Technically spring. I wrote about it here.

And I inherited her treadmill.

Dragging it upstairs, I placed it strategically across from a TV so that I had no excuse but to get some steps in and catch up on a bevy of TV shows I would never watch otherwise. Maybe I’d just watch sports. Or YouTube.

As part of a work incentive, I’m trying to hit a certain number of steps per day, month and quarter. I don’t really even know for sure right now what they are. I’ll have to look them up, but I’ve set a goal of 12,000 steps per day for myself in the hopes of getting super consistent about hitting 10,000.

And now I’ve done it for three consecutive days. It feels good. One of the advantages of walking versus running, to start, is that I’m not famished afterward. It also helps to get me nice and tired for bedtime, and it creates for me a daily routine and goal, structure that I’ve always craved.

The goal is simple: Hit 10,000 steps every single day at the bare minimum.

treadmill-10000

I’m hoping the result will be to get me down to 200 or below at some point soon.

And at that point the weather will be cooler, and I’m going to be running again. Outside. Where we were meant to run.

I’m going to document that process here, leading us from now until next year’s Oklahoma City (half-)marathon.

Over the weekend, I was able to achieve well more than 10,000 steps. Heck, the past couple of weekends, I’ve had a dalliance with 20,000.

treadmill-180000

That helps given that I’m still prone to a candy binge or a couple of beers here and there, but I still need to shed that extra weight to help me get back into my running groove.

Whether I’m able to get there in a timely manner is something you’ll be able to see and to know about right here.

Featured image: Larry D. Moore CC BY-SA 4.0

My 10 favorite songs from the most awesome band in the world, Barenaked Ladies

0

Before I made the trek from Tulsa to Oklahoma City the other night, one of my colleagues at the station in T-town noted on Facebook how “One Week” wasn’t nearly the best Barenaked Ladies song.

And I totally agree.

But his post set me off on a 90-minute BNL listening-fest on the way home, and it inspired this blog post where I’m going to try to rank my Top 10 Barenaked Ladies songs. It’s not that tough to narrow to ten, but ranking them from there is really tough.

I wouldn’t boot a one of ’em.

My relationship with this Canadian band goes back to my days working at Insite Interactive in Dallas, where my buddy Danny turned me on to Steven Page, Ed Robertston and their classics. With Barenaked Ladies, you’ve got a batch of early quirky acoustic classics and the more modern pop gems. This was right about the time “One Week” became popular. It was that tune that put the band on the broader map, although I think I’d argue that it was “The Old Apartment” that separated their acoustic era from the pop one.

One of the things that has always appealed to me about Barenaked Ladies is how positive their songs are, even amid the band’s own turmoil. Steven Page left or was fired a few years ago due to drug problems and bi-polar disorder, as I understand it, and it was kind of heartbreaking for fans who washed themselves in their uber-optimistic vibe. They were sort of the last band you’d expect this from, and it was kind of like seeing your favorite married couple get a divorce.

For what it’s worth, Page did reunite with the band for the band’s 2018 induction into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, and it might portend further reunions. Page told The Globe and Mail that the decision to let him perform with vocal partner Ed Robertson and the rest of the group was up to them.

One never knows what the dynamics were that caused the split, and addiction takes a toll on behavior and relationships, many of which can’t be repaired, especially at a professional level. However, if I could wave a magic wand, I’d love to see these guys roll into their 50s and 60s back together, making crafty new pop music.

They’re the musical heroes the world needs right now, to be perfectly honest.

Well, here goes nothing — my Top 10 Barenaked Ladies songs:

10. Be My Yoko Ono

Favorite line:
I mean if I was John and you were Yoko I would gladly give up musical genius
Just to have you as my very own personal Venus

 

9. It’s All Been Done

Favorite line:
Alone and bored on a thirtieth-century night
Will I see you on The Price Is Right?
Will I cry? Will I smile?
As you run down the aisle?

 

8. Brian Wilson

Favorite line:
You can call me Pavlov’s Dog
Ring a bell and I’ll salivate
How’d you like that?
Dr. Landy tell me you’re not just a pedagogue

 

7. Too Little, Too Late

Favorite line:
I’m gaining strength, trying to learn to pull my own weight
But I’m gaining pounds at the precipice of too late

 

6. One Week

Favorite line: the whole damned song. It is lyrically odd and brilliant. Make no mistake, this is a wonderful tune.

 

5. Falling For The First Time

Favorite line:
I’m so thrilled to finally be failing
I’m so done, turn me over cause it feels just like I’m falling for the first time

 

4. Get Back Up

I really, deeply love this song. It was recorded and released well after Steven Page left the band, and it feels like Ed Robertson wrote this as encouragement to himself and the band. Plus, he references one of my favorite movies, “Moneyball.”

Favorite lines, two of them:
Now I’m ready for the big rebound
I know you can’t win them all, but I’m swingin’ like Pitt gettin’ hits in Moneyball

Standing eight and I’m on the ropes
Knees givin’ but I wont lose hope
Not the second coming of Muhammad Ali, but can I get a “WOOT” for the boxing imagery?

 

3. Pinch Me

As I understand it, this is a tune Ed Robertson wrote largely about feeling down when the band returned to Canada after first having big success in the United States. As always, and as I’m apt to do in my writing as well, BNL makes it all feel upbeat.

Favorite line is really a favorite verse:
On an evening such as this
It’s hard to tell if I exist
If I pack the car and leave this town
Who’ll notice that I’m not around
I could hide out under there
I just made you say “underwear”
I could leave but I’ll just stay
All my stuff’s here anyway

 

2. Odds Are

Truth be told, this is my favorite Barenaked Ladies song — and like “Get Back Up,” it was released after the great Steven Page left the band. This is catchy, clever, positive and 100 percent true. I wish people would listen to this song more often because, truly, regardless of what one is going through, the odds are that it’s gonna be alright.

Favorite line is, again, a whole verse:
Hit by the A-Train, crashed in an airplane
I wouldn’t recommend either one
Killed by a Great White or a meteorite
I guess there ain’t no way to go that’s fun
But somewhere in the world someone is gonna fall in love by the end of this song
So get up, get up
No it’s never gonna let up so you might as well sing along

 

1. If I Had $1,000,000

It’s hard to discount anybody’s opinions; they’re just opinions. But I’d guesstimate that at least 90 percent of BNL fans would list this as their favorite. The way I’d describe it is that, to me, clearly, this is the most beloved classic in their discography and it’s the reason we all fell in love with ’em.

My favorite line, and there’s so many to pick from:
Well I’d buy you some art (a Picasso or a Garfunkel)

It’s like their success has given the rest of us songwriters permission to let our inner nerd shine.

Shine on.

You can find my music at youtube.com/ryanweltonmusic

By en:User:TheHYPO – Uploaded as en:Image:Golf11.jpg, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Baker Mayfield’s Cleveland Browns debut was about what I expected

0

It’s tough being a Cleveland Browns fan.

I’ve been one for only one game, so maybe it’s not so tough. The Brownies are 1-0 on the young preseason thanks to a good first drive by Tyrod Taylor and two super solid quarters from No. 1 draft pick Baker Mayfield, resulting in a 20-10 win over the New York football Giants.

For the record, I’m a Dallas Cowboys fan by birth, but I’ve wandered like Jimmy Swaggart over the years. I’m currently following the Los Angeles Rams because I like their uniforms, the Jacksonville Jaguars because of their unis and the fact that they nearly dethroned the Patriots last year.

And the Browns.

Because Baker.

Because I’m a Sooner, and that dude was the greatest Sooner of them all.

Was he a better quarterback than Sam Bradford? Don’t know about that.

Was he a better passer than Jason White? Don’t know about that.

But Oklahoma fans had prayed and prayed for somebody with a transformational spirit about him, somebody whose energy was as contagious as Tim Tebow’s — and we got him in Baker Mayfield. I’d guess that 95% of all Cleveland Browns fans are in Ohio (where Baker’s flag is already planted, ha ha).

The other five are in Oklahoma. Seriously. There’s Browns gear in every sports store in the Sooner State.

What makes Baker a hell of an NFL prospect was on display tonight. The dude can place the pig where nobody else but you can catch it, and he can do it in a way that doesn’t risk your body and that leads you into the clear.

Mayfield’s first touchdown pass came with 6:43 to go in the half, a 10-yard strike to David Njoku, who caught two touchdowns against the Giants. The tight end from the U was all about the scores Thursday night, finishing with 46 yards on two receptions, both scores. However, it was Mayfield’s pass into triple coverage that attracted all the attention.

He put it where only Njoku could have gotten it.

It was the same deal when Mayfield fired an across-the-middle strike to Antonio Callaway for a 54-yard touchdown with 13:37 left in the game to give the Browns their final margin of victory, 20-10.

Sure, Baker showed off his legs a couple times on crucial third downs, but he didn’t look like Cam Newton running the ball.

And it’s hard to tell the extent to which Baker has the ear of the rest of the club. At Oklahoma, Mayfield had a way of getting everybody around him on board with the plan, and those guys would have taken a bullet for him.

That very well could happen in Cleveland.

Having watched HBO’s first episode of “Hard Knocks,” I’m not 100 percent sure Hue Jackson is the type of coach who’s going to turn around an organization like Cleveland. He’s not rah-rah enough. I recall watching the Cardinals’ season on “Hard Knocks” and thinking, “Bruce Arians is a guy who can affect change.”

We’ll see.

What’s particularly exciting for Browns fans and even me, a first-time Cleveland Browns rooter, is that if they could get Josh Gordon back (and keep him off drugs) and if they could somehow lure Dez Bryant to the shores of Lake Erie, Cleveland would be set up quite nicely at the receiving corps.

Njoku is solid, and Jarvis Landry is already fantastic.

I’m sure Tyrod Taylor is a talented dude, and he seems to be a terrific guy.

But Baker Mayfield demonstrated throughout his college career an uncanny ability to place a football precisely where it needs to go. And then he turns around and does it for two scores in his NFL debut, albeit preseason.

What will eventually separate Mayfield from his competition, however, is that he’s a transformational leader. People flock to him. They want to play with him, play for him and will get on board (eventually) with whatever he wants to do on the field.

Even though it was just a preseason game, tonight’s effort against the Giants was a fantastic start to the NFL career of Baker Reagan Mayfield.

I’m not crazy. I don’t have him booked for Canton already.

But of all the people on planet Earth, Mayfield is probably the last dude I’d bet against.

Cleveland should be very excited to have this guy on their team.

Big Brother 20: Tyler has been saved; Bayleigh blindsided in more ways than one

0

If you’ve been watching Big Brother all season, you know that South Carolina native Tyler Crispen has been this year’s puppet-master although he’s infinitely more likable than Paul Abrahamian. Tyler’s like some 1970s teen-heartthrob throwback. He might also be the fourth Hanson brother.

And if not for what happened Monday, he might have been going home Thursday.

But I’ve got good news for you: Tyler Crispen is here to stay. For now.

I don’t typically look ahead in the Big Brother game. I wait for the television episodes to take me where they will. However, upon seeing Tyler get nominated as part of the Hacker @comp that Haleigh won, I knew I couldn’t wait until Wednesday.

I had to peek.

Angela won the veto, and tonight she pulled Tyler off.

And then Angela, who like Tyler is from Hilton Head, nominated Bayleigh for eviction, sitting alongside Rockstar.

So, let’s back up for a second.

Angela had won HoH and decided on Scottie and Rockstar for nomination, and part of the beauty of that move was that it kept Bayleigh placated. Bayleigh has a power app called ‘Identity Theft’ that will allow her, until there are eight people left in the game, to hijack the nominations and put up anybody she wants.

All along, Angela’s idea has been to backdoor Bayleigh. Angela’s nominations were innocent enough, in Bayleigh’s eyes, to keep her from using her power app. It lulled her to sleep.

And might usher her out the door.

I know I’ve given away a lot here, well, unless you’re already on Twitter or the live feeds. Then you know, too. And you might have heard that Bayleigh thinks she’s pregnant. There’s talk that she asked production for Plan B after a night with Swaggy C, and talk that she believes she’s with child. It stemmed from a dream, apparently.

That’s got to freak her suburban family the heck out.

Anyway, I’ll leave it at that, ready to watch an action-packed Wednesday night and then watch the houseguests send Bayleigh to the jury house Thursday night.

It could be a ‘double-eviction’ night, if you know what I mean.

In all seriousness though, what in the heck!?

Review: WalMart’s ‘Keep It Green’ pre-packaged smoothies

0

So, Kristi and I have been drinking smoothies for breakfast for at least a month. Our first foray into smoothie-world was centered on fruits, spinach and Greek yogurt.

I’ll write about it another time, but we recently added peanut powder, hemp seeds, chia seeds and cacao nibs to our smoothie repertoire.

And this morning, we tried our first pre-packaged smoothie. It was WalMart’s Great Value-branded “Keep It Green” pre-packaged smoothies with pineapple, mango, avocado and spinach.

It had three servings, which for our purposes is a bit odd unless young Olivia would also want one.

And she wouldn’t.

This smoothie pack was easy to put together. You just opened the package, put it into your smoothie cup and add 8 oz. of water.

The taste? It tasted like a super healthful smoothie. Heavy on the green and light on the fruit. Could have definitely used a little honey.

However, it wasn’t awful and it was unquestionably healthful.

%d bloggers like this: