Monthly Archives: December 2014

Happy New Year

I just wanted to take a moment and thank everyone for their love, support and encouragement in the last year. I’ve said this before but I’ve gone through some drastic changes in the last 365 days, a lot of them really good. I know most of you don’t see me as often as you like but that’s life.

I’m looking forward to see what 2015 brings my way. I’ll do my best to succeed. After all, luck is for losers.

Have a happy and safe new year.

Here’s some brief history about New Year’s Eve.

In the Gregorian calendar, New Year’s Eve (also known as Old Year’s Day or Saint Sylvester’s Day in many countries), the last day of the year, is on December 31 which is the seventh day of the Christmas season. In many countries, New Year’s Eve is celebrated at evening social gatherings, where many people dance, eat, drink alcoholic beverages, and watch or light fireworks to mark the new year. Some Christians attend a watchnight service. The celebrations generally go on past midnight into January 1 (New Year’s Day).

Samoa, Tonga and Kiritimati (Christmas Island), part of Kiribati, are the first places to welcome the New Year while American Samoa and Baker Island in the United States of America are among the last.[1]

In English-speaking countries, a few popular songs are associated with New Year’s Eve, and it is common for them to be broadcast via radio on (or shortly before) December 31: Even some Christmas song focus on the arrival of a new year during the Christmas and holiday season.

“Auld Lang Syne” by Robert Burns. This is the song most closely associated with the holiday – especially the Guy Lombardo musical rendition. A version performed by Lea Michele was featured in the 2011 film New Year’s Eve.[72]
“Happy New Year” by ABBA.
“Imagine” by John Lennon.
“It Was a Very Good Year” by Frank Sinatra.
“It’s Just Another New Year’s Eve” by Barry Manilow.
“Let’s Start the New Year Right” by Bing Crosby.
“New Year’s Day” by U2.
“Same Old Lang Syne” by Dan Fogelberg.
“Let’s Spend This New Year’s Eve At Home” by Christi Bauerlee.
“Kiss Me at Midnight” by ‘N Sync from their 1998 album The Winter Album.
“This Is the New Year” by A Great Big World.
During the millennium celebrations, Prince’s “1999” was re-released and enjoyed increased popularity due to the song’s namesake year. Will Smith also released a song titled “Will 2K”, which also proved successful, owing to the lyrics’ celebration of millennium parties. Robbie Williams enjoyed a similar success with his 1998 single “Millennium”, as did Pulp for their 1995 song “Disco 2000”.

Spanish band Mecano’s single “Un Año Más” is popular in Spanish-speaking countries; it describes the final minutes of New Year’s Eve by people following the Spanish traditions. A version with lyrics in Italian was also released.

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Last Minute Mini-Bat reviews

Last night I burned through a couple of Batman-related books to cleans my palate for 2015.

The first is “Batman A Visual History”

If you are looking for the quintessential book to introduce people to Batman this is it. This is full of art and information about the Dark Knight, his roots and everyone who has come into his universe. It even goes into detail about the various TV adaptions.

I also finished “JLA: Justice For All”

It features stories by great writers like Grant Morrison, Mark Waid and Mark Millar. In this volume you have well-known leaguers like Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman, as well as lesser known members like The Huntress, Zauriel and Steel. There’s even a cameo from the Justice Society.

This wasn’t my favorite volume of JLA but it was a good way to end the year.

JLA was a monthly comic book published by DC Comics from January 1997 to April 2006 featuring the Justice League.[1] The series restarted DC’s approach to the Justice League which had initially featured most of the company’s top-tier superheroes but shifted in the 1980s to featuring a rotating cast of established characters alongside newer ones and also saw that franchise expand to several series, diluting the prestige of the name brand. When relaunched by writer Grant Morrison, the team again focused on the most recognizable, powerful, and long-lasting heroes in DC’s library.

The low sales of the various Justice League spinoff books[2] by the mid-1990s prompted DC to revamp the League as a single team (all the various branch teams were disbanded) on a single title. A Justice League of America formed in the September 1996 limited series Justice League: A Midsummer’s Nightmare by Mark Waid and Fabian Nicieza. In 1997, DC Comics launched a new Justice League series titled JLA, written by Grant Morrison with art by Howard Porter and inker John Dell. Morrison stayed as writer for the series through issue #41, though several issues had fill-in writers. JLA #18-#21 and #33 were written by Mark Waid. Mark Millar, Devin Grayson and Mark Waid, and J.M. DeMatteis wrote issues #27, #32 and #35 respectively. It was an awesome book.

Mini review: Tedy Bruschi’s “Never Give Up”

One of the finals books I read in 2014 was Tedy Brushi’s “Never Give Up: My Stroke, My Recovery and My Return to the NFL.”

I found Bruschi’s story pretty inspiring. Like a lot of athletes who suffer an attack like a stroke come at a crossroads in their life. Bruschi decided to move forward and fight his way back to the NFL.

This book also gave an insight as to how a family of a professional athlete lives. The most of when we see an athlete’s family is on the sidelines or a documentary. Through this book we see how Bruschi’s wife takes some of the burden of his decisions.

All in all a pretty good book. I give it 4 out of 5 stars.

 

On August 30, 2009, broadcast of Sunday Night Football, Al Michaels reported that Bruschi would announce his retirement after 13 seasons in the NFL. Bruschi confirmed his retirement on August 31, 2009 at a press conference alongside New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and owner Robert Kraft. During this broadcast, Bruschi described how fulfilled he felt in completing his 13 years of playing football. He described how it felt to know that he had reached all of the goals he wanted to reach.

One writer speculated that Bruschi retired from the Patriots in the 2009 preseason, rather than being cut/released by coach Bill Belichick before the 2009 season.

Bruschi joined ESPN as an analyst following his retirement, and served as a game analyst for WBZ-TV Boston’s telecasts of New England Patriots preseason games in 2013.

Bruschi has indicated that he would prefer that his number not be retired. It was worn by six-time Pro Bowl guard Brian Waters in 2011. Starting in 2012, his number 54 is now worn by Dont’a Hightower. The New England Patriots held a special ceremony in Bruschi’s honor during halftime on Monday Night Football on December 6, 2010.

On May 21, 2013, Bruschi was voted by fans as the 19th player to enter the New England Patriots Hall of Fame. Bruschi’s Patriots Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place during halftime of a Thursday Night Football game between New England and the New York Jets on September 12, 2013.

On February 1, 2015, Bruschi was an honorary captain at Super Bowl XLIX.

Nina Ansaroff highlight

I stumbled across this highlight video of Nina “The Strina” Ansaroff.

Ansaroff took a big step in her mixed martial arts career this year by making her UFC debut against Juliana Lima. After three rounds Lima got the decision, however Ansaroff showed that she could hold her own. I think she has what it takes to make a splash in the women’s strawweight division.

Here’s hoping for great things for Ansaroff in 2015.

From Ansaroff’s Wikipedia.

Ansaroff started practicing Taekwondo at the age of 6. She began training in mixed martial arts in 2009 as a way to lose weight and to help keep in shape following a motorcycle accident. She made her professional debut in 2010, and amassed a record of 5-3 before joining Invicta FC.

Invicta FC

Ansaroff made her promotional debut against Munah Holland on December 7, 2013 at Invicta FC 7. Ansaroff won the fight via TKO in the third round.

Ultimate Fighting Championship

Ansaroff made her debut in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) against Juliana Lima on November 8, 2014 at UFC Fight Night 56. Ansaroff lost the fight via unanimous decision.

Ansaroff was expected to face Rose Namajunas on May 23, 2015 at UFC 187. Nina Ansaroff missed weight on her first attempt at the weigh-ins, coming in 4 lbs overweight at 120 lbs. After having made no attempts to cut further, she was fined 20 percent of her fight purse, which went to Rose Namajunas. However, on the day of the event, Ansaroff was pulled out of the bout by UFC doctors after contracting a case of the flu. As a result, Namajunas was pulled from the event entirely.

Ansaroff next faced Justine Kish at UFC 195 on January 2, 2016. She lost the fight by unanimous decision.

Ansaroff faced Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger at UFC Fight Night: Rodríguez vs. Penn on January 15, 2017. She won the fight via submission in the third round.

Ansaroff is scheduled to faceAngela Hill at UFC Fight Night: Poirier vs. Pettis on November 11, 2017 in Norfolk, Virginia.

Background

Ansaroff was born and raised in Weston, Florida and is of Macedonian descent. Nina Ansaroff is also in a relationship with fellow UFC fighter and current women’s bantamweight champion Amanda “The Lioness” Nunes.

 

Theater: Markiplier as a security guard at Freddy Fazbears’ part 2

One of the hobbies I developed during my time at The Easterner – courtesy of my friend Kurto – was watching playthroughs of video games. For the most part I’ll watch the ones without commentary unless it’s a horror game.

Below is Youtube user Markiplier’s playthrough of “Five Night at Freddy’s 2.” I’ll upload the first game later.

Aspen Ladd comes into stacked Invicta FC flyweight landscape

Invicta Fighting Championships announced the signing of 19-year-old prospect Aspen Ladd last Friday.

Ladd is 8-1 as an amateur and with six finishes. She is coming off an impressive submission win over Roma Pawaelek where she captured the TUFF-N-UFF flyweight title – which you can watch on the video above.

Ladd, who is expected to make her debut inside of the Invicta cage in 2015, is coming at an interesting time in regards to the promotion’s 125-pound division. In women’s mixed martial arts, the flyweight division can be overlooked because of the popularity and growth with the bantamweight (135 pounds) and strawweight (115) weight classes.

But Invicta has a lot of good talent in their flyweight division. Veterans like Vanessa Porto, Roxanne Modafferi and current champion Barb Honchak sit at the top of the mountain. There are also prospects like Rachel Ostovich, DeAnna Bennett and Andrea Lee who all had breakout moments this past year.

Ladd has good hands and grappling, not to mention she can work the clinch pretty well. It will be interesting how she does in her first foray inside of the Invicta cage.

Over the next two years, she fought five times and remained undefeated with all but one win coming by way of stoppage before the final bell. Ladd was scheduled to make her UFC debut against Jessica Eye on July 7, 2017 at The Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale. However, the day of the event Ladd fell ill and the bout was canceled.

 

Ladd’s record.

W Sijara Eubanks Unanimous Decision MMA 01/14/17 Invicta FC 21: Anderson vs Tweet, Kansas City, Missouri, United States
5:00 R3 / 3×5 Pro Bantamweight • 135 lbs • Under Card • Weigh-In: 135.3 lbs (61.4 kgs)
W Jessica Hoy TKO (Punches/Elbows) MMA 07/29/16 Invicta FC 18: Grasso vs Esquibel, Kansas City, Missouri, United States
3:14 R2 / 3×5 Pro Bantamweight • 135 lbs • Under Card • Weigh-In: 138.1 lbs (62.6 kgs)
W Kelly McGill TKO (Elbows/Punches) MMA 03/11/16 Invicta FC 16: Hamasaki vs Brown, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
1:47 R3 / 3×5 Pro Bantamweight • 135lbs • Under Card • Weigh-In: 135.9 lbs (61.6 kgs)
W Amanda Cooper Armbar MMA 09/12/15 Invicta FC 14: Evinger vs. Kianzad, Kansas City, Missouri, United States
4:42 R2 / 3×5 Pro Flyweight • 125lbs • Main Card • Weigh-In: 125.7 lbs (57.0 kgs)
W Ana Carolina Vidal TKO (Punches/Elbows) MMA 02/27/15 Invicta FC 11: Cyborg vs. Tweet, Los Angeles, California, United States
4:21 R1 Pro Flyweight • 125lbs • Main Card • Weigh-In: 125.8 lbs (57.0 kgs)
W Roma Pawelek Guillotine MMA† 08/01/14 Tuff-n-uff, Las Vegas, Nevada, UnitedStates
2:54 R1 Amateur Flyweight title
L Cynthia Calvillo Unanimous Decision MMA† 04/26/14 WFC 9: Mitchell vs. Jara
3:00 R3 / 3×3 Amateur Flyweight title
W Maddy Simmons TKO (Punches) MMA† 02/15/14 WFC 8: Avila vs. Berkovic
2:02 R1 Amateur Flyweight title
W Silvia Babaeghian Unanimous Decision MMA 10/05/13 Ultimate Reno Combat 44
3:00 R3 / 3×3 Amateur ……………………………………………………………………………………..
W Leslie Rodriguez Unanimous Decision MMA 08/03/13 West Coast Fighting Championships 6
3:00 R3 / 3×3 Amateur ……………………………………………………………………………………..
W Veronica Carousos Armbar MMA† 07/20/13 Ultimate Reno Combat 42
0:25 R1 Amateur Flyweight title
W Karla Gonzalez-Santoyo TKO (Punches) MMA 06/01/13 Ultimate Reno Combat 41
2:08 R1 Amateur ……………………………………………………………………………………..
W Michelle Mix Armbar MMA 04/13/13 Ultimate Reno Combat 40
1:08 R1 Amateur ……………………………………………………………………………………..
W Jaimelene Nievera Armbar MMA 03/15/13 Montbleu Resort & WFC: MMA at the Lake
2:14 R2 Amateur ……………………………………………………………………………………..

Fight Theater: WWE hits of 2014

One of my resolutions is to watch a lot of combat sports in the year, particularly 1,000 bouts of wrestling, MMA, boxing and kickboxing – each. The rule is simple: they cannot be matches I’ve already seen.

In preparation of this, I’ve gone through and watch some WWE-reccomended matches that happened this past year. Here are some of those bouts.


Bad News Barrett vs. Dolph Ziggler for the IC title


Randy Orton vs. Cesaro from Smackdown


Tyson Kidd vs. Dolph Ziggler vs. Cesaro for the IC title