Tag Archives: football

Fifteen Favorites From 2013

We did it! We completed another year discussing things that start with F. I thought for sure we’d run out of compelling things to talk about by now, but the letter F continues to yield a rich supply of fascinating, fantastic minutiae.

2013 was another banner year for TMF. I want to thank all of you for your kind and continued support for this incredibly silly endeavor, which hopefully will continue to serve as an enjoyable escape for F enthusiasts — and Indonesian spambots bent on selling me low price fashion design purses — for years to come.

OK enough with the platitudes, let’s have look at fifteen of the finest flashes from the year that was: 15 of our favorite posts (along with choice excerpts) from 2013!

15. Fourteen Freds“…but the Crime Dog is the best of the bunch. The Tampa native managed to smash 493 career dingers despite his awful swing that looked like an old left-handed man swinging a cane at a mosquito…”

“Another all-time great Fred, Mr. Rogers is still inspiring all of us to be better neighbors. Last year after reading a story about Mr. Rogers, I removed a spiteful cactus wall I’d planted just to anger my neighbor.”

14. FreebirdYou’ve probably heard the song. You most likely know at least some of the words, have cranked it on the radio, and dare I guess, you’ve fervently air guitar’d along with it at some point.  But for those of you in far-flung places like Australia, Belgium, or Ohio, you may not fully appreciate the true meaning – the profound cultural weight – of Freebird.”

13. Frightening Fish“Despite Sebastian the Crab’s misleading portrayal in The Little Mermaid of life under the sea being some sort of delightful Calypso paradise; the reality is not quite so idyllic. The truth is that there are many alarming things lurking under our waters…”

12. 440s – 450s A.D.“Legend has it that during this time, Polynesian bigwig Hawaiiloa and a group of intrepid sailors sailed thousands of miles from their home in the South Pacific and managed to reach Hawaii. (Just another early example of Americans goin’ big, punching limitations in the face, and rockin’ it superpower-style).”

11. Fillmore, Millard“Did he enable a little bit of slavery here and there? You bet. Was he anti-Catholic, anti-Mason and did he generally loathe immigrants? His Know Nothing party affiliation would suggest probably so. Is he almost always rated as one of the worst U.S. presidents of all time? Strike… Either way, it’s redemption time for one of our most obscure, forgotten leaders.”

10. Flossing (Scared Straight)“Y’all just take a seat right over there. I wanna talk about your teeth. I used to be just like you. Cruisin’ through life, not thinking about my teeth. Sure, I knew in the back of my mind it was wrong to not floss; I had seen the commercials and whatnot. Momma always told me it was important. I suppose I knew there would be consequences one day.  But I didn’t care; I was young and invincible, right? <really starts yelling and getting into frightened kids’ faces> Look at me! Look at me now! Y’all don’t wanna be like me! Bleeding gums, needing a prescription mouthwash and a special toothbrush… You think this is funny? Advanced stage gingivitis homey!” Continue reading

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Fantasy Football: Big Evil Corporation League

An email to kickoff the new season of the ultra-exclusive Big Evil Corporation Fantasy Football League.

Gentlemen, the time has come for yet another year of Fantasy Football. I’d like to extend a welcome to our newest addition to the league, FoxConn. You may remember them from such things as paying their workers shockingly low wages, aggressively polluting the environment, and not allowing bathroom breaks until the factory-mandated iPhone quota for the day has been fulfilled.

I’m just teasing of course. You’ll find that there’s a lot of good-natured ribbing here FoxConn, welcome aboard.

We have assembled on this encrypted email thread, 15 of the world’s largest, most ruthless corporations. Continue reading

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Finals Frenzy, Fair-Weather Fans

We are in the midst of another NBA Finals Frenzy here in south Florida. It’s hard not to get swept up in it. Even people who ordinarily hate basketball are finding themselves wearing LeBron jerseys, googling pictures of the Birdman, staying up late to watch the games with riveted intensity, and enthusiastically talking Heat basketball on Facebook.

There’s a shared sense of palpable excitement in the air. It’s gripping and awesome… even though we all know it’s such a fleeting thing – and even more cynically – that our love for the Heat is entirely dependent on the outcome of game 7. Win, and the adoration continues. Lose, and we quickly move on to caring about whatever the next big thing may be. (Dolphins in ’13??? Nah you’re right probably something else.)

That is a bit of a sad thought, but it says a lot about human nature. Continue reading

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Ferdinand Magellan Fires Up Modern-Day Portugal

Caramba.

Portugal, it’s time for a chat. I’ve just been kind of hanging out, forlornly navigating the nether realms the last 500 years, but enough is enough. Clearly you need a pep talk.

There was a time when Portugal was great. I mean truly big-time. Harlem Shake? Are you kidding me? At one point in the 16th century, a quarter of the earth’s inhabitants were doing the Lisbon Shimmy – provided they had finished their 15-hour shift of brutal forced labor and yielded sufficient production for the day.

It’s time we recapture our glorious heritage. Do you remember what that even entails? Do you remember what I did? Or to a much lesser extent what Vasco da Gama or Henry the Navigator did?

I’ll tell you what I did. I navigated the crap out of planet earth – not so much for myself or my Spanish paymasters – but for you. I captained a ship that circumnavigated the world so future generations of Portuguese meninos e meninas could have what I never got to enjoy.

I didn’t intrepidly sail around the world with a crew of rough men, eating penguin flippers, dodo bird legs and shoe leather; enduring storms, loneliness and unbelievable hardship for my own benefit. I sailed for you.

My parents died by the time I was 10, so I had to grow up fast. I spent what little time I had exploring, risking it all, advancing, and fighting; until I got speared to death on a remote Philippine island. Do you have any idea what that was like? It was awful. Yet I died a horrific death 8,000 miles from home not for my own gain, but to ensure a glorious future for mother Portugal. The last few hundred years I can’t help but question this decision.

Look at you now: a debt-ridden country bereft of overseas possessions that has had to legalize drugs because everyone is so sad. Clearly this sadness is due to a lack of maritime glory.

I feel we have lost our noble Portuguese identity. We are a land that is smaller than those bobos North Korea, or even the U.S. state of Indiana, yet we have given the world so much. The delight of sardines, the faux hawk – that was totally Cristiano Ronaldo – and Fogo de Chao? You may think of that as more of a Brazil thing, but the way I see it, the riches of Brazil, Cape Verde, Mozambique and Goa are yours, Portuguese people.

The spoils of these savage lands are your birthright. In fact, a fellow apparition just informed me that Angola now has better job prospects than our beloved motherland. So there you go. It’s all out there, you need only tap your inner navigator and set sail for a new Portuguese Golden Age.

I exhort you, Portuguese homens e mulheres, recommission the caravels and raise your masts. Plunge your padrões into foreign lands and stake new claims.

Reclaim your birthrate. Rediscover your heritage. Reclaim greatness. For Portugal, for God, for future glory.

– F. Magellan

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Fantastic Floridians

The assault on Florida continues. This is really getting out of hand, guys. It is Threat Level Midnight* in the battle to protect the reputation of our colorful and delightful state. While we wait for the political will and/or bold legislation needed to enact some sort of aptitude test requirement to live here (and/or wait for Georgia to be caught unawares so we can start spiriting weirdos across the border), I think the best thing to do is to continue highlighting Florida’s finer features. With that in mind, TMF presents this list of just a few of Florida’s fantastic folks.

Ron Magill – The mustachioed communications director of Zoo Miami is a genuine national treasure. His weekly appearances on the Dan LeBatard radio show here in South Florida are the stuff of legend. He responds to rapid-fire animal-related phone calls with remarkable patience (Yo Ron, who wins in a gorilla-grizzly bear fight? Etc.), good humor, enlightening insight, and an absolutely encyclopedic knowledge of just about every species known to man.  While some animal advocates come off as annoying, pompous or exceedingly awkward, Ron just seems like a cool guy who wants everyone to learn about and appreciate the world’s fascinating critters. His animal calls are also uncanny.

Zora Neale Hurston – She was a brilliant author and anthropologist who wrote, most notably, Their Eyes Were Watching God. A festival is held in her honor every year in her hometown of Eatonville.

Tom Petty – Originally from Gainesville, TP is rock royalty. The dude’s done it all: He’s written a song that will be played on skydiving videos forevermore, and a track that every stadium in the world plays whenever there’s a stoppage in play… He’s toured the world, formed a supergroup, smashed his hand in a fit of rock rage, lost a band mate to drugs, done a major movie soundtrack (She’s The One kinda sucked, but hey…) and acted in a major movie (The Postman kinda sucked, but hey…).

What else can we say about Tom Petty? It’s good to be king.

Dave Barry – One of the best and most influential humor writers of all time. In addition to his hilarious nationally syndicated Miami Herald column, which led to a Pulitzer Prize in 1988, who could forget such classic works as Boogers are my Beat, or Stay Fit and Healthy Until You’re Dead. He’s also not a bad musician apparently.

Andy Garcia – This son of Cuban immigrants attended high school in Miami, and went on have the best role in the worst Godfather movie, and the worst role in the best Bernie Mac movie.

Osceola – An iconic Native American warrior. He fought to keep his homeland, and for the freedom of all people. He was captured in a cowardly manner and died of malaria in 1836, but his intrepid legacy lives on.

Henry Flagler – Flagler was the visionary who laid the groundwork for making our state the powerhouse it is today. After making boatloads of cash along with John D. Rockefeller at Standard Oil, Flagler started building the infrastructure needed to make Florida the accessible tropical paradise he envisioned. To accommodate and bolster his many acquisitions in the state (hotels, land and such), the Florida East Coast Railway was methodically built; along with accompanying roads and canals which complemented his support for local farms, schools and hospitals. This engineering marvel would stretch all the way to Key West by the early 1900s. Oh yeah he managed to found West Palm Beach and Miami along the way.

He was laid to rest in St. Augustine.

Don Shula – “Here’s what I’m going to do for you, city of Miami. I’m going to raise up your team and your city out of sports obscurity.  With an iron will and fierce determination, I will turn a group of relative unknowns into the greatest football team of all time, win the Super Bowl, then win another one the year after. I’m not done. After I retire as the NFL’s all-time winningest coach, I’m going to make a place where you can enjoy reasonably priced, large hunks of choice, juicy meats.”

– Don Shula (unauthorized paraphrase of life accomplishments)

Thanks coach, we love you always. You will always be “unforgotten” in our eyes.

*Excellent “The Office” reference

**Bonus Fantastic Floridian — Mark Twain, who was born in Florida (Missouri). I feel like he would get a chuckle out of that pun.

*** Apologies to Ernest Hemingway, Marjory Stoneman Douglas and Stetson Kennedy – we ran out of room but you will most definitely be featured in the next round of Fantastic Floridians

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Fake Friendships, Flying Frogs, Falcons & Flacco

What a week for F! The Falcons and the greatest F-QB since Frerotte, Gus – Flacco, Joe – both have a shot at the Super Bowl this weekend, Manti Te’o set us up beautifully for a Fake Friendships post, and Neatorama reported on a new species of flying frog. Whew, where to begin… Let’s start with the Te’o debacle.

Fake Friendships

You’re not going to believe this, but some people use the anonymity of the Internet to pass themselves off as something/someone they are not. I know right! Hard to believe. Notre Dame star Manti Te’o learned this lesson the hard way this week. Continue reading

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Filed under F Athletics, F Commentary

Future Forecastings: 2013

As we welcome a New Year, it’s time once again to unleash the groundless hunches, uneducated guesses and baseless predictions our new media have trained us to love so much. To honor our noble modern traditions: jumping to conclusions, inflaming passions for ratings’ sake, and of course biased, uninformed prognosticating on world events… we give you this list of things that may happen in the coming year.

  • Upon hearing of rampant unrighteousness among penguins, the “Westboro Baptist Church” will sail to Antarctica to protest. The penguins will get a bit annoyed but for the most part tune them out.
  • I will somehow be bitten/tusked by a wild boar and a tiger, thus completing the rare feat of having been bit by the entire* Chinese Zodiac animal roster. Completing the “Bitten by the Zodiac Cycle” will somehow be parlayed into an attempt to secure a General Tso’s For Life prize.
    After this year's rat bite, just a boar, tiger and mythical dragon short of the cycle.

    After this year’s rat bite, I’m just a boar, tiger and mythical dragon short of getting ‘bit by the cycle.’

    Continue reading

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