baseball

Proof the Election Was Rigged: The Cubs Take the White House

Cubs Win Less than a week after winning the World Series for the first time in 108 years, the Chicago Cubs have stunned America again. In fact, the entire planet is flabbergasted after the Cubs won the U.S. presidential election Tuesday night through an unprecedented write-in campaign, winning precisely 270 electoral college votes.

“No one’s more shocked than we are,” admitted manager Joe Maddon. “No one saw this coming. Everyone wants to know about our transition plan. Heck, we haven’t even gotten to Disney World yet. Half of us are still hung over. We’re hoping they’ll give us a few extra days. Maybe lucky 108?”

Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred was summoned before a Congressional panel early Wednesday morning on suspicion of a connection between Major League Baseball and the Kremlin.

“Given Putin’s love of hockey, wouldn’t the Kremlin have preferred the Pittsburgh Penguins?” fumed an indignant Manfred. “They took the Stanley Cup this year.”

A CIA insider revealed that director John Brennan’s pointing his finger at Cuba. “Now that Cuba and the U.S. have re-opened relations, we suspect that Cuba may be angling for a MLB team. Given Trump’s threat to close that relationship down again, it makes sense,” said the anonymous source.

Secretary of State John Kerry declined to comment when asked about a midnight tweet from Cuba’s President Raúl Castro.

@PresCastroCuba Nuestros amigos al norte. No fue nada. De nada. (“Our friends in the north. It was nothing. You’re welcome.”)

Meanwhile, the Cubs have been sequestered in a locker room huddle exploring what a Cubs presidency might look like. Ben Zobrist, World Series MVP, was named the Cub’s presidential spokesperson.

“This is the first time in U.S. history where the oval office will be held by a team of people,” Zobrist said. “We’re still trying to work out the details. Do we have a rotation like we did in high school, when you got to be 'Principal for the Day?' Who gets the Lincoln Bedroom? Can we make hot dogs and apple pie the official foods for state dinners?”

Players are tweeting ideas for the first 100 days and monitoring fan feedback. First baseman Anthony Rizzo took on the issue of the national anthem.

“The most popular idea is to replace the 'Star Spangled Banner.’ Chicago’s favoring ‘We are the Champions’ but we’re not sure we can get the rights," Rizzo said. "So, we’re looking at ‘Take Me Out to the Ball Game.’ Either way, it’s so much easier to sing.”

Jason Heyward, the “J-Hey Kid,” who’s been active in the Real Men Wear Pink campaign against breast cancer, suggested repainting the White House.

“I think it’s time for the White House to represent the changing color of America," Heyward said. "Half of America’s ladies, so I thought why not pink? This isn’t polling well. Maybe ecru or taupe?”

Pitcher Jon Lester reportedly wants a jumbotron and bleachers in the Rose Garden.

“Listen, we weren’t running for president," Lester said. "We’re sort of like a third party candidate team. So, we want to be transparent to the people we now represent. We want to live stream from the oval office and the situation room. America’s bleacher bums can sit there and watch, heckle us, push us to be the best presidents we can be. This is polling in the 79 percent range with a four-point margin of error.”

When asked how he felt about his team being elected president, owner Thomas Ricketts said, “I hope Harry Caray’s watching this from heaven. I can just hear him saying, ‘Holy cow, it’s a bee-yoo-tiful day! We all know the moon isn't made out of blue cheese...but if it was made out of bbq spare ribs would you eat it? Would you eat the moon if it were made of ribs?’”

Gretchen Martens is a DCH graduate who performs with Been There Done That and Brain Wearing Pants. When she’s not working as an executive coach and trainer, she writes satire for her blog www.PotatoNationUSA.com. She is finishing her first play, sanINity, an irreverent look at losing a loved one to mental illness.

(Image: Boing Boing)

Doing Dallas: Saturday Night Lights

Each week, this Virginian will try a new Dallasite activity and blog about the experience. Apparently, in Texas, it’s a cardinal sin to not eat, sleep, live, and breathe football. Confession: I am guilty of this sin. What can I say? I grew up in a household where baseball was the main sport of focus. My dad promised my brother and me the “largest milkshake McDonald’s could make” if the Cleveland Indians ever won the World Series. My loyalties have a habit of following my sweet tooth, so it’s obvious where I threw my support. On a side note, I am still waiting for that milkshake; come on Cleveland, give me something to work with. In high school, football wasn’t really a thing either. My football team (go Cavs!) won only a SINGLE game during my four years there, and that was the result of a forfeit. I don’t know about you, but a 40-game losing streak doesn’t ever really get me riled up about a sport. Cut to college, where I am #blessed with a team that is still waitin’ on a sunny day.

As a result, I have never stayed for an entire football game during my four years of college. Or even made it to halftime, for that matter. I’d walk into the stands, take a picture or two to prove that I was there, and then peace out. Saturday night, though, was the last home football game of my undergraduate career, and I decided, for sentimentality’s sake, to give the whole football thing a try. Here are the three life lessons this experience taught me.

Be Careful What You Wish For

Football game or arctic tundra?

My go-to, “Oh I Can’t Make It to the Game,” excuse had always been that it was too hot. I could always rely on this excuse because it’s Texas – when is it not hot? “I’ll go when it gets cooler, you know, actual football weather.”*

It was so cold that ICE formed on the outside of my cup. ICE.

Well, temperatures plummeted on Saturday to ungodly lows. Seriously. I think I left a tiny, frozen piece of me stuck to one of the stadium bleachers. The cold, misty rain that fell from the sky all night really helped make the experience more bearable. Wearing earmuffs, mittens, two pairs of pants, an undershirt, a sweater, a sweatshirt, a scarf, and a wool coat, I think I resembled more of a padded-up football player than even some of the guys on the field.

*Clarification: I just said this to appear knowledgeable about the sport. In reality, I have no clue what prime football watching weather actually is. My ideal watching situation involves sitting on a couch inside somewhere, eating taquitos, and watching something on TV that is not football.

Knowledge is Power

Just because I don’t watch football doesn’t mean I don’t understand it. Well, that’s not entirely true. I understand the general objective of the game, I just don’t have all the terminology to express this understanding. As I found out Saturday night, trying to make sense of the game in laymen’s terms is not always well received by those sitting around you.

See, basically I was trying to explain to my roommate that USF was about to score on our team. “They just have one place to go until they get the point!” I said. “They cannot get that space! We have to win tonight!”

It seems abundantly clear to me that I’m quite obviously saying USF had just five yards to go until a touchdown. My roommate understood me loud and clear. Those around me, however, stared at me as if I’d just shouted a stream of expletives.

“It’s five yards until the end zone,” said a football die-hard, clearly happy to dole out un-requested knowledge. “And if they score, they get six points. Then they can kick an extra point or try for a two-point conversion.”

Hadn’t I just expressed that, but in a shorter, faster way? In the time it took for this fan to “explain” to me what I already (mostly) knew, USF could’ve scored a million touchdowns. Moral of the story: apparently in Texas, football fans get offended by the use of unofficial terminology.

Quit While You’re Ahead

Snapchat photoshoots took priority over watching football.

I tried. I really really tried to be involved in the game. But it was much more interesting to take a Snapchat photoshoot or to go buy hot chocolate or to tweet about being at the game rather than actually watching the game. We made it through the halftime show, but having withstood frostbite-worthy conditions for the past four hours – tailgating takes a lot of time and energy – we decided to call it a night. Conveniently, SMU was up 13-0 when we left. It was only hours later, as we were sitting in a restaurant eating gloriously warm queso, that we learned SMU lost IN THE LAST FOUR SECONDS OF THE GAME. How is that even possible?! They let USF get a touchdown in the last. four. seconds. Four seconds is NOTHING; heck, I could walk on hot coals for four seconds and be fine. (Probably not, but I’m trying to make a point here.)

Fortunately, having quit while we were ahead, my roommates and I had the comfort of heat and queso to soften the blow, otherwise, who knows what we might have done.

Summing it Up

I’ve always said that the day pigs fly would be the day you’d see Chelsea Grogan at a football game. But you know what? I learned some new terminology during the game, and apparently “pigskin” is another word for “football.” So Saturday night, pigs flew and I went to a football game. I may not have witnessed the entire game, but by golly, that is just something to look forward to for SMU Homecoming next year. What is life without goals?! And maybe, by that time, I’ll have brushed up on football terminology and our team will actually be on a winning streak. I mean, anything could happen when pigs fly, amiright?

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Chelsea is a Level 5 improv student at the DCH Training Center. She is obsessed with music of the 60s & 70s and her vices include vanilla lattes and Swedish Fish. You can check out more of Chelsea’s thoughts and ponderings HERE!

What We're Loving: Unpopular Opinions, Hidden Upsides, Deleted Context, Specialized Pitching

Each Friday, DCH performers, teachers, and students offer their recommendations for what to watch, read, see, hear, or experience. This week David Allison makes a bold statement, Jonda Robinson fails greatly, Amanda Hahn needs a mind break, and Ryan Callahan goes to the bullpen. imgresSometimes I really hate popular opinion. There’s a collective hive mind that we all participate in and often times cinema is significantly affected by it’s whims. You’ll hear about this amazing movie that “everyone” loves, set plans to see it opening night, and then realize within five minutes that Benjamin Button is terrible. But you can’t say anything about how much you hated it because it gets nominated for Oscars and stuff. The opposite happens too and it’s even more disappointing. There are so many movies that our pop culture group mind simply rejects and we’re not supposed to give them a chance. Then, like an idiot, I see one of these flicks, love it, and can’t talk about my adoration for it in fear of receiving palpable judgement in return. The current film I feel self conscious about really enjoying is something that was released on DVD this past week: Muppets Most Wanted. AND IT’S WHAT I’M LOVING THIS WEEK. There, I said it.

Where are you going?

Don’t run away yet!

Hear me out on this. Yes this commercial failure that you didn’t hear anything good about is not a great film. With that said, there are numerous factors that make it highly enjoyable to watch. First, you’ve got solid performances from Tina Fey, Ricky Gervais and Ty Burrell. See, that’s not so bad! You liked them in that other thing you liked, so that’s gotta count for something. Also, it’s basically a musical and contains about ten full length songs, most of which were written by Bret McKenzie (Flight of the Conchords). Flight of the Conchords was your favorite show! Plus, McKenzie won an Oscar for the tunes he wrote for the previous Muppets film, so that helps. Oh and it’s the Muppets! You remember how much you loved them as a kid? You would’ve killed another child, straight up murdered a newborn, to go to Muppet Treasure Island with the gang.

So give this movie a shot. Even if it means sneaking it home in a pizza box and watching it under the cover of darkness so that your friends don’t judge you. - David Allison 9780345472328_p0_v2_s260x420

Lately I’ve been trying to look at the positive side of failing. For example, last week I was visiting a friend and we decided to go eat at a certain restaurant. We got a cab and made the trek across town during rush hour, only to find out that they were closed. Sigh. Trying to look on the bright side, I told her that it wasn’t a total waste because it was a mistake we’d learn from. She appropriately rolled her eyes at me.

In an effort to prepare for another year of teaching middle school, I’ve been learning more about the concept of learning through failure from the book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Dr. Carol Dweck. Dweck’s theory is that there are two kinds of mindsets that you can have: the fixed mindset, in which you believe that your intelligence and talents are fixed and do not change, and the growth mindset, in which you believe that your abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work. For the fixed mindset, failure is a terrifying thing that says, “You’re not enough.” But for the growth mindset, failure is a perfect opportunity to learn and become better than you were before. According to Dweck, you get to choose which mindset you approach life with. If you’d like to see which mindset you currently lean toward, there’s a quiz for that! And if you’d like to attempt to change your mindset, there are steps for that!

Some of the most fun things I have done in the past year, from taking a sketch writing class to wakesurfing, were scary things that I at first said no to because I was afraid of failing. If there’s something you’ve been wanting to try, I highly suggest that you go for it, even if you’re afraid you’ll fail at it. It’ll help you become a cooler, better version of yourself. And if you need something to help you get motivated, check out Dweck’s book to give you that little push that you need. - Jonda Robinson

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The end of each semester is typically unusually busy. This summer’s semester has been no exception. Sometimes you just need a mind break from everything. I found the perfect one: Ads Without Context . The name is misleading because it’s more like “ads re-contextualized” than ads with no context. And thank goodness it is. This entire feed is just .gifs from infomercials with captions giving new context to the melodramatic ads. The mix of the silent overacting overlaid with the captions is endlessly silly and delightful.

Some are simple.

Some are gross.

Some make me laugh out loud.

Some are weirdly sad.

And many more are endlessly re-watchable.

So turn off the TV and tune into No Context Ads. The infomercials are way better on there. - Amanda Hahn

51fbRsn29aL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_You ever find a book and feel like it was written just for you? That's how I feel about The Setup Man: A Novel, the debut thriller by T.T. Monday. The book introduces Johnny Adcock, a 35-year-old lefty relief specialist for the fictional San Jose Bay Dogs. Johnny only pitches when the Bay Dogs have a lead, and only against left-handed hitters. He works about ten minutes a night. Most guys in his position would be content to chew on sunflower seeds and let the money roll in. Not Johnny Adcock. He's the restless sort. He needs something to fill the rest of the day. That's why he works as a private detective. Worried your wife is cheating on you with the pool boy? Someone from your time in the minors trying to blackmail you? Johnny Adcock is your man.

The Setup Man combines my two favorite things: Private detectives, and private detectives who are also other things. Private detectives are my favorite fictional characters. As a child I loved them all: Encyclopedia Brown, Thomas Magnum, Rick and A.J. Simon. The A-Team was essentially a private eye super team. In high schoool I discovered Humphrey Bogart's Phillip Marlowe, still the greatest onscreen P.I. ever. After college I devoured the Continental Op stories of Dashiell Hammett, such as Red Harvest, for my money the best P.I. novel ever. I've spent many an afternoon or evening binge watching reruns of Psych or Monk. Private detectives are the best.

But the private detective who is also something else is even better. How can something be better that the best? Here's how: What would be better than a private detective who investigates the paranormal? Oh, I don't know, maybe a  private detective who investigates the paranormal and has a day job as a lifeguard. What could be better than a private detective played by Andy Richter? A private detective / accountant played by Andy Richter! And what could be better than a private eye who investigates the seedy underbelly of Major League Baseball? A private eye who investigates that seedy underbelly while having to pitch to lefties every couple of days.

I started reading The Setup Man late Tuesday night and finished on Wednesday. Once I started, I had to keep reading. That's about the highest praise you can give a P.I. novel. I needed to know what happened next, and I wanted to see how Johnny Adcock would solve the case. The book isn't perfect. There are a couple thudding moments of authorial intrudsion that feel like an after-school special, and the book jacket inexplicably features a right-handed pitcher, but the plot moves, the tone is charming, there is a vivid cast of characters, and the details about day to day life in the majors seem authentic. I can't wait for Johnny Adcock's next adventure. - Ryan Callahan

What We're Loving: Happy 238th Birthday, America!

Each week, DCH performers, teachers, and students offer their recommendations for what to watch, read, see, hear, or experience. This week we're changing it up. We asked some of our blog contributors to share what they love about The Fourth of July. Here's what they had to say:  59429_10There’s not a lot of space to be genuine on a comedy theater’s blog. But this week, I’m going to skip all of that other bull shit because it’s July 4th and America, much like the Wu-Tang Clan, ain’t nothin’ to f*** with. Every Fourth of July, I go out of my way to watch Ray Charles’ rendition of “America the Beautiful” taken from The Dick Cavett Show. I love this video because it perfectly showcases the timeless voice of Mr. Charles. I love this video because of the unique verse that Ray sings for the first half of the performance. I love this video because it reminds me of The Sandlot. The simple, understated beauty of this performance can’t be topped and if I see you this weekend, we should share some earbuds and give it a listen. - David Allison

enhanced-buzz-20909-1349299472-15I love that, on July 4th, baseball is on TV all day long!!! I can watch gigantic Thomas Jefferson and George Washington mascots have a foot race in DC by morning, see the Cubs choke and lose another one at lunch, and spy Jackie and Kelso kissing at a Dodgers game in the evening. It makes me feel so American. Turning our presidents into comical figures, embracing lovable losers, and drooling over celebrities canoodling is just so us, isn’t it? And, I get to enjoy it all while wearing my red, white, and blue Texas Rangers jersey. God bless America! God bless America’s pastime! - Glenn Smith urlI remember when what I loved about July 4th was the release of Will Smith movies.  That’s right -  I even spent money on Wild Wild West.  I was 17.  I had worked my first job, earned my own money, and made sure I got the day off to spend some of that money on watching the Fresh Prince battle a dude with half a body (but a whole of racism) on a giant mechanical spider in the Old West. I’ve grown up since then and now, the thing I love about July 4th is holiday pay.  I will get paid double time working this Friday!  I will spend some of that money on getting to the Oklahoma City Improv Festival to perform with my troupe...because Dairy Based is something I love year round. - Julia Cotton

Screenshot_2014-07-02-13-24-37-1Freedom, Family, Fireworks, and Food - These are the ingredients to a great 4th of July. I could write a book about the things that make the holiday great. For now I will focus on the single most important thing I’m lovin’ this holiday weekend: THE GREAT AMERICAN SLAMDOG. It’s a food as versatile and diverse as this great nation. For those uninitiated, The Great American Slamdog is a traditional Hot Dog – made the way you like it – wrapped in a great big slice of pizza. I can’t think of anything more American. Get one! It’s what America wants you to do! - Tommy Lee Brown

idesofmarchThe fourth of July has never been a super important holiday for me. I mean, it's no May 6th (George Clooney's birthday), but I do enjoy it. I like the fireworks, the music, having a day off and actually spending it with friends and family instead of in a four hour marathon nap after watching the third season of 30 Rock for the 1776th time. My favorite fourth memory is probably from last year. I live close to Fair Park so I drove to a car wash parking lot that had a clear view of the fireworks, turned on some music and sat on the hood of my car and soaked it all in. It was a really nice moment in a really nice country. I mean, we're no George Clooney. - Sarah Wyatt

TallChickenBurgerI do my best to eat low-carb, low-calorie foods. It's how I maintain my svelte figure and teenage energy. And one of my newest food discoveries is the Original Brat Hans Jalapeno and Sharp Cheddar Chicken Burger. Let me run down some key highlights: No antibiotics, no added hormones, no preservatives, no MSG, no nitrates/nitrites added, gluten free, soy free, 150 calories/serving, and 1 gram of carbs. You can find these heavenly patties two to a package at Whole Foods. So, if you're looking for something healthier to cook on the grill this holiday, try these. The mixture of jalapeno and melted cheddar will have you thinking, "This is what America tastes like." - Jason Hensel

declaration_big_enhancedMost people don't know this, but I carry a copy of The Declaration of Independence with me everywhere I go. In my computer bag, right next to my passport, surrounded by pens, The Declaration sits, sharing the same little book with The Constitution. Every once in a while, when I need to be inspired, or reminded of how good we have it in this country, I open the book and read the start of the second paragraph: "We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." Equality for all. A concept so important they had to out it down in writing. Sure, it wasn't actually true in 1776, and it remains untrue today, but progress moves slowly in our Great Experiment. It is only a matter of time until we achieve the full promise of our Founders. - Ryan Callahan