The Patriots, President and that “other” Drive-Thru Window

April 1, 2008

I’ll kick this post off with a little ditty on how clandestine the Patriots actually are. So I’m on my way to the New England Revolution’s Media Day last Tuesday for work. It’s at Gillette Stadium, which, of course is shared by the football and soccer teams in the region. I didn’t read the intro email and stupidly walked to the door I’d normally enter when going to a Revs game. Locked. OK, so now I know I have to walk all the way to the entrance at the other side of the stadium. Fine. So I’m walking along, checking stuff out. Try one door. Locked. Try another. Doesn’t look right so I leave. I realize the guy at the gate earlier had mentioned something about the Pro Shop. So maybe the entrance is through there. I’m walking across a private lot, almost there when I get stopped by a guy with a headset. Security.

“What are you doing,” he says.
“I’m lost, maybe you can help me out,” I reply.
“You can’t be around here. This is a football area only. We’ve been watching you on the security camera the whole time,” he says.
Now here’s where I wanted to say something witty and awesome like “Well, Eric Magnini sent over…” or “You guys always have your eyes on the camera…” but instead paused to figure a cool way to say it, struggled, chickened out and just asked him to point me in the right direction. Still, THAT’s how clamped down things are in the land of Belichick. Now…on to the info post:

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How obsolete is that other window in a drive-thru? Thing’s just a placeholder for a “Next Window, please” sign now. When’s the last time anyone has used that? And who thought that was a necessary idea? No, no we can’t have people paying and getting their food at the same window. We def need two. And then everyone went and copied it like it was a brilliant breakthrough. About as useful as a VCR now.

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Had some internal debates with tipping recently. Not the standard tipping like at a bar or restaurant, but in other realms where the rules aren’t as clear. For instance, I heard that some people tip the guys who pump your gas at full-serve stations. Incred to me, thought never crossed my mind. I would never tip them, but on the other hand, I tip the kids who wipe down your car after you go through the auto car wash. Also, I always tell them to keep the change when I go through the Dunkies drive-thru, but I’d never do the same at a fast food place. Isn’t it basically the same thing? There’s some weird rules there that need clarification.

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One of my favorite Will Ferrell SNL characters was his George Bush bits. Here’s a nice little summary clip.

LOL this got be searching some Bush stuff. This is probably the shortest and funniest one:

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The Problem with Facebook Apps and Brett Favre Retires

March 4, 2008

Rachel McAdams

What happened to Rachel McAdams? Besides being absolutely gorgeous, and in my personal Top 10, she had a 15-month period in 2004-05 when she was absolutely on fire, with big roles in Mean Girls, The Notebook and Wedding Crashers. She was at the top of her game. Every guy loved her and girls didn’t mind her either because of The Notebook and her cute role in Wedding Crashers. I thought she was gonna be a star. Guess Red Eye was a bad idea.

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How much do you hate moving your car for someone to get out of a driveway or something? I know I do. It takes literally 45 seconds, but when you’re throwing on those shoes and reaching for those keys, I swear it feels like I would rather do anything else. Especially in the winter, too, when you have to throw a jacket into that mix.

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Retta and I were talking about it the other day, and he actually thought about posting something here himself, but got a little nervous of the female response. Well I’ll do it for him: how whack are Facebook applications? Things are a chooch meter, the more you have the bigger tool you are. Girls sending you Patriots’ fans apps 3 days before the Super Bowl. Bumper stickers with alcohol and slut jokes. Comparing hotness of people. What type of mixed drink are you? LOL C’mon now. I ignore all those things. Are me and Retta wrong about this?

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Brett Favre retired today. Pretty sure it shut down ESPN. Specials on every channel that have right now. I can’t get away from it. Pretty sure Skip Bayless almost just broke down on First Take. Guy’s spewing Favre propaganda right now. Funny how he bounced right after the Pats resigned Moss. Sorry pal, but he’ll stick with Brady.

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Every week I update email accounts for my weekly newsletter I send out every Monday for my job with Soccer New England. I cope/paste emails my boss sent me from people who used to subscribe to the print magazine, advertise with the magazine, or anyone who had some sort of affiliation with. I have about 10-12 huge word docs with hundred of emails – all about 4-5 years old, mind you.

A lot of the time I have to delete most of them after I send a test email because the address doesn’t exist anymore, stuff like old AOL screenames when that was all the rage and accounts from servers that don’t exist anymore (like Adelphia and Media One).

So…other day I’m doing my usual copy/paste routine and a certain email address jumped out at me: kgceltics@aol.com. What theeee? This was 5 years ago. Who knew about this? Who is this messiah? Well I racked my brain for a bit (probably too long considering I should have been working) and couldn’t figure out what else this could stand for. KG initials? I got nothing. I thought about the soccer team Celtic, but why the “s” then? If anyone has any ideas, please comment below. Or if you have AOL, give me a quick info search.


Ortiz Rides A Sidecar and The Whitest Kids U Know

February 29, 2008

First thing’s first. If you haven’t yet seen the best picture I’ve seen this week, check out David Ortiz riding in a sidecar during Wednesday’s trip to DC. This pic is from the Boston Herald. Get ready to LOL:

David Ortiz sidecar

 Is he the man or what?

 Second thing I got for you is gold. My buddy introduced me to the Whitest Kids U Know, a sketch group that had a show on Fuse and apparently is a pretty big hit on the internet, so you may have already heard of them. Anyway, I checked out a few vids, and this one made me laugh the most:

Here’s one more explaining the “true” assination of Abe Lincoln. Who would have thought:

In sports news, Pats resigned Tedy Bruschi and Kelly Washington, and there’s nothing new on the Randy Moss front. As for Asante, he’s scheduled to meet with Philly today. This must be a dire time for Eagles’ fans because they announce his visit (along with a pic) on the front page of the team’s website. Relax.

In hoops, looks like Cassell is ready to come here. Too bad we already got PJ Brown, so we can’t bring in Spree too. Damn it.


I’m F*cking Ben Affleck: Kimmel’s Response to Silverman

February 26, 2008

Loved Sarah Silverman’s dig to boyfriend Jimmy Kimmel about banging Matt Damon. Truly a piece of comedic genious and made me reconsider my thoughts on her.  Then I saw the other day (last night I think) Kimmel had aired a response on his show. Unreal:

For those of you who havn’t seen the original video in its entirety:



 Another link I thought was very interesting from this week, Harvard’s gym is implenting women’s only gym hours to accomodate its Muslim students who can’t work out in front of men. That’s real. Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to the 1500s!

Also, Floyd Mayweather supposedly is going to wrestle The Big Show in March’s WrestleMania. Supposed to be banking a cool $20 mill for it. Watch him make it rain in that video.


South Park, Ralph Nadar and Derek Jeter

February 24, 2008

South Park

I bought the South Park movie the other day for 5 bucks because I somehow didn’t own it. I’ve seen it plenty of times, but watched it again because that’s what I do after I buy a DVD. I was literally crying during Cartman’s song about Kyle’s mom. Tears came out. That song never gets old and movie in general is so re-watchable. Remember it was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Song for “Blame Canada?”

Just reaffirms how good this show is. Nominated for an Academy Award, nominated for 7 Emmys, winning two of them for “BFF” and “World of Warcraft.” The South Park movie got an unbelievable 81% on rottentomatoes.com, a site that polls major reviews of every movie. That’s so good for that site. For a movie/show that doesn’t take itself seriously and blatantly abuses crude and lewd humor, it must be really good to get such good reviews.

If you still think Family Guy is better, I feel sorry for you. You’re either uninformed or stubbornly ignorant. At least go to http://www.allsp.com/, click on the 10th season and find the episode called “Cartoon Wars.” If you still think Family Guy is better….well you’re just a chooch. I guess the Teen Choice Awards voted FG the best animated series over SP in 2006, so at least you have some pubescent brace-faces on your side. I’m sure they have their reasons.

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So, Ralph Nadar is running for president again?

Wouldn’t be a big deal to except that political experts say he’ll most likely hurt the Democratic candidate, which will incite me with anger if he swings the race from Obama to McCain. Once I found out he was running I thought to myself that I feel like he’s ran every year since I can remember. Turns out, after a quick Wikipedia, he’s run every four years since 1992. What!? Give it up, buddy.

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Funny that Derek Jeter is the voice of baseball. Not really that it’s him because, let’s face it, who else would it be? But more because anything he says is made into a headline and held almost as gospel. For instance, he said he would welcome blood testing in baseball and it was a headline. OK, well that’s just one person’s opinion. Am I supposed to be convinced by this? And I remember back during the Clemens hearings it was “Jeter says hearings bad for the game.” Well, alright, I agree, but isn’t that kind of obvious.

Reporters just ask him a question about a subject, see what he says and then it’s an auto headline. Weird that he’s pretty much the only guy in sports that this happens to.

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Love that the Sox extended Francona. Great move. Always been a big fan of his. He gets a lot of shit (Francoma) but it’s really not his game management that I’m overly impressed with: it’s just his overall professional approach. Guy handles everything and everybody perfect. Lot of egos, superstars and personalities in that clubhouse. Plus the overall media and fan scrutiny/pressure playing in Boston. I think people sometimes forget that the Sox being normal is a relatively new thing. It used to be crazy in that organization. The fact that spring training now goes on without any drama is amazing. The club has certainly come a long way and I think that’s in part because of Terry. So respected and professional. Love it.


Richard Zednick, The Celtics, Kayne and Dec. 12. 2012

February 12, 2008
Simes made a good point the other day (really!) about how I should just post my info’s in ym blog because A) it’s accessible to everyone, not just those with AIM and B) I’m not restricted by word count.
Dece idea, I just don’t think people like clicking on links. So for awhile, I’m going to try to write mini infos in my AIM profile and larger ones here. See how it goes over….
Here’s 2/12 info: 
More unbelievable that Richard Zednick is alive, is that one of the doctors than worked on him also worked on Kevin Everett. Weird.
Other day driving home from Boston I drove through a rain storm, a snow storm, another rain storm, then sunny skies in Rockland. It was so crazy. I spent the whole ride adjusting my windshield wipers. Didn’t get it. Weather is so F’d now, worse than ever. Global Warming is like secret real. December 12, 2012: Don’t say you weren’t warned.
From my blog: “Kayne’s CD already has two pretty big hits, especially considering that everyone you know sweats the ultra-addictive, 80s flavored “Stronger.” Couple that with Mr. West’s high probability for a Grammy, considering he’s only getting better and is now well-respected in the music industry and pop world alike, and his selling appeal seems to be at its peak.” 
–Damn lost to..Herbie Hancock?!?! What the. Still rap album of the year tho.
Celts are redic to me. Responded to all the knocks on them already. Three-headed monster with no bench? Posey, House, Big Baby and Leon Powe have been unbelievable; Big Baby was an absolute steal in the second round. Can’t win against the West? 16-0 vs. Western Conference teams. Included in that are wins over Dallas and San Antonio, both withouth KG. That proved to me right there that this team is an actual contender. Very excited to see what these guys can do. Spurs are still the fav., followed by Det. But No. 3 has got 2 go to the Green.

How To Fix College Football

January 8, 2008

In the wake of  the President of Georgia’s call for an 8-team playoff system, I was reminded of my very own project from my Sports PR class last year that — tada! — proposed an 8-team playoff system at the four major BCS Bowl sites. Guy like copy me??

Check it out:

I am writing you to propose a feature on how Commissioner Myles Brand and the National Collegiate Athletic Association came to the decision to implement it’s first-ever college football playoff system designed to crown an undisputed national champion.

After the much-criticized, highly controversial Bowl Championship Series, the NCAA finally decided to employ an eight-team playoff bracket to be played at the four major bowl sites – Sugar Bowl, Rose Bowl, Orange Bowl and Fiesta Bowl.

This feature would delve into the behind-the-scenes workings of Brand and the members of the NCAA Competitiveness Committee, detailing how they came to this deal after years clamoring for a college football playoff tournament.

Perhaps your broad-based readership would be interested to know what, after years of controversy, made this year different than the rest – what finally pushed the NCAA to comply with popular demand.

I can provide access to Brand, as well as top-tier college football coaches, high-ranking NCAA officials and executives of the four major sponsors whose names appear across everything bowl-related.

Thank you for you consideration.

Sincerely,

Nick Williams

Nick Williams

Sports PR Final Plan

12/12/06

The client for this public relations plan is the National Collegiate Athletic Association, specifically NCAA football. Previously, the NCAA has used the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) standings to determine the participants in the national title game, the National Championship Game, with the other four BCS bowls determined by the BCS rankings as well (Note: there are also 27 non-BCS bowls). Now the NCAA wants to introduce its long-overdue playoff system, an eight team bracket comprised of the top-8 ranked teams in the Associated Press and Coaches Polls and show the fours sponsors of the four bowl games that their revenues will not just be the same as before, but will actually increase.

  1. 1. The quantifiable goal of this plan is to sell out all seven playoff games and increase the television ratings for the national title game.

2. The central message we’re trying to convey is the excitement and closure this new playoff system provides. We want the general public to know there will no longer be any controversy surrounding the participants in the national championship game and for the first time ever, there will be a road to the title game.

Tactics:

The very first course of action will be to hold a press conference announcing the new playoff system. NCAA Commissioner Myles Brand will hold the conference, introducing the new format and answering questions from the media.

We will also use this opportunity to issue the news release and text of the official announcement, so each member of the media has a physical document detailing the basics of the new playoff system. The news release will explain the eight team bracket decided by polling. The poll will be a compilation of the Associated Press poll and Coaches Poll – basically one poll voted by members of the media and coaches. Members of the media will surely appreciate their poll carrying more weight than usual as well as the elimination of any controversy, like in 2003 when the AP Poll had a different national champion than the BCS Bowl designated.

The eight teams in the playoff bracket will be seeded properly (i.e.: No. 1 vs. No. 8, No. 2 vs. No. 7, etc.) with games spread over four sites – the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif., the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, Ariz., the Orange Bowl in Miami, Fl., and the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans, La. These were the four bowls which previously hosted the BCS title game, with a four-year rotation implemented to decide which site hosted the title game that year.

But that was before 2006, when the NCAA and BCS decided that there would be a Bowl Series Championship which would be the No. 1 vs. No. 2 game separate from the four major bowls (in the case of 2006, the game will be played in Glendale in addition to the Fiesta Bowl). This is the premise that we will operate on – namely that two or more games can be played at the same site.

The eight teams in the bracket will be allocated to the four different sites, with the host of the 2-7 and 3-6 games to also host the semi-final game in each respective bracket and the host of the 1-8 game to also host the national championship. The host of the 4-5 game obviously receives the best first round game on paper and will not host an additional game – this designation will rotate every year amongst the four bowls.

We will also hold a meeting with our four current sponsors, Tostitos, Citi, Allstate and FedEx, explaining to them that this system will work – and better than the old one. Our point of emphasis will center on the fact that each game in this playoff system will be bigger (more hyped) than any bowl game in history.

Plus, three out of every four years, a site will host two games – that’s two games of ads, two game of a worldwide audience seeing the sponsor’s logo on the television graphic. Each sponsor will get its logo on the name of the game (i.e.: The Tostitos Fiesta Bowl quarterfinal game, the Rose Bowl National Championship game sponsored by Citi, and the FedEx Orange Bowl semi-final game). The usual augment advertising will still apply – the logo on the field, on all the banners, etc. – and will be two-fold in three out of the four years because of the hosting of two games.

Basically, we will drive home the point that the sponsors do not lose, they either host one game as usual or get to be a part of two games. And as for the 27 other non-BCS bowls, we’ll ensure those sponsors and those associated with those games that they can still be held, based on whatever selection process and formula they used before. These bowls have always been held before the Big Four anyway, and they will still have the same pool of teams to draw from (the four bowls always necessitated eight teams).

Once we conduct the press conference and get the word out about the new, exciting less-controversial playoff system, we’ll create our own website to fuel the pre-event hype: http://www.roadtothetitlegame.com/ will be an NCAA run website designed to foster the fervor surrounding this historical movement and provide easily accessible information on the playoff tournament itself and the teams involved.

The site will feature a message from Commissioner Brand to the fans describing his feelings for why the NCAA finally switched to a playoff format and the excitement this brings him and the college sports community. Once the eight teams in the bracket have been finalized, the site will contain information pertaining to all the schools, specifically rosters, player and coach bios, the team’s schedule, record and results from the year and a brief team history. We will create a section for game previews for each game, laden with injury reports, scouting reports and any other information pertaining to that game’s matchup (who’s hot, who’s not, history between the two schools, key matchups, etc.). Basically, we want this site to be the site for fans who want to follow the road to the national title.

The website will also contain a section pertaining to the four host sites and brief history of each as well as section with information on all four sponsors. The website will also allow for more advertising opportunities for other sponsors to advertise on the site itself.

To market this website and the event itself, we will take our ads in all major metro dailies, as well as USA Today, across the country. We’ll run television ads on ESPN and the major networks covering the game. On each TV ad and at the bottom of each print ad, we’ll be sure to broadcast the name of our website, depicting it as the go-to source for all info on college football playoffs.

As for the media targets, we can sell this new playoff system easily. There will be no shortage of coverage for this historical, perhaps overdue, announcement. For feature ideas, we can suggest the obvious and most interesting: how this new deal came to be. The story of Commissioner Brand holding closed-door meetings with everyone from sponsors to coaches and what finally pushed his hand will surly spike the interest of any sports fan, business executive or anyone who follows the news – this is a momentous occasion. In addition, national and local media outlets alike will strive for the story of what got the wheels in motion on this movement and what was done this year to get this deal done that was missing in years past.

In addition, features on each of the eight teams would not only be applicable for their local media outlets, but also for national publications. And once a winner of the tournament is crowned, a magazine feature on the “first undisputed national champion” would surely be a hit. Also, because so much of the bowl games are business- and sponsor-driven, a feature in regards to the business aspect of the tournament, like the effect hosting two games will have on sponsors, would make for a good placement in national business magazines, The Wall Street Journal or any local business section.

In terms of the electronic media, 60 Minutes could conduct a sit down interview with Myles Brand explaining how this decision came to be. Also, an ESPN special on the eight teams in the bracket and their road to the title game would be applicable.

Overall, because of the magnitude of this change, we are practically ensured blanket coverage. But, we want to take this to another level, and that hinges on the website and the promotion of the website. We want the road to the title game to run through the NCAA, and the fans’ road to information to run through our website.