Monday, April 29, 2019

...Remember That Depth Is the Greatest of Heights...

Fiona Apple | "On The Bound" | When the Pawn...

I don't know what I'm doing, 
Don't know should I change my mind, 
I can't decide, there's too many variations to consider
No thing I do, don't do no thing, but bring me more to do,
It's true, I do imbue my blue unto myself, I make it bitter
Baby, lay your head on my lap one more time
Tell me you belong to me
Baby say that it's all gonna be alright
I believe that it isn't.
     -Fiona Apple


Friday, April 26, 2019


Pick up yo trash bitch

Palms to sky
Digital fellatio
Those robots are crazy
(remnants of burning man?)
I'm taking them home someday

Double 00h
(sup wrangler?)

- eightychoices.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

OKC goes Bye-Bye

Damian Lillard waved bye bye to the Thunder last night in an immediate classic after he air-mailed his final dagger en route to 50 points, booking the Blazers a second-round matchup. This was his game, his series, his time. There are few players in the league with his skillset, fewer still are blessed with his temperament. He's ice cold in the eyes of his opponents, and yet he's warm, enduring and humble to the Rip City fans who love him. Hell, if you like basketball, you gotta like Dame. For the sake of appreciation, just look at where he shot that game winner from. 

Dame's first half was flame-throwing; he kept the Blazers afloat while CJ dealt with foul trouble. Lillard's shot-making is artful and relentless. He wants it. I thought Curry and Collins brought a lot of toughness and intangibles to the table in the first half. Curry also played well late in the game as both teams stayed "small". Mo Harkless, mo problems was at it again, bringing all the little things to the game that coaches love—his willingness to do what is asked of him. He and Aminu play the role of role-players perfectly, no easy task in the ego-driven NBA world. Regardless of Dame's point total before halftime, it was his sense of timing and commitment to team that stood out alongside his heroic shot making. He kept his team in the game. And therein lies the point, his team. The Trailblazers are a team; they trust each other and exude togetherness. He remains calm and thus the team operates under a sense of calm. Even after he hit a 40-footer for not only the game, but the series, there he is, calm, waving bye bye to the team that lives within the volcano that is Russ. 

If Damian's first half didn't impress quite enough, how bout his first shot of the third, another deep-ass three that found the bottom of the net. "He's having a night," a direct quote from my most trusted game watching partner. I replied, "F*ck'n daggers." As the game unfolded with multiple momentum swinging runs, there was Dame trusting his team. His kick out to Chief in the corner after he drove baseline from the opposite side was another snapshot of his ability to make the right choice. Then he hit a three to put the Blazers up nine, forcing OKC to call a timeout. After that timeout the Thunder went on to take a 15 point lead. The team that played like one still had enough to fight back however. CJ finally warmed up (We saw you Nurk! and so did McCollum), hitting shots that proved pivotal down the stretch. There was lil Curry making a defensive play, and there was Mo making clutch free throws, and then there was Dame.

Lillard would wind up making a driving layup to tie the game one last time, his next shot was game! You know what time it is, Dame Time. How's about a nice even fifty in your eye? BYE BYE. 

Only in the NBA,


Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Crushing | Julia Jacklin

Best New Music |

Julia Jacklin | "Body" | Crushing |

that's when the sound came in
I could finally see
I felt the changing of the seasons
all of my senses rushing back to me

go your own way
watch me turn my own head
eyes on the driver, hands in my lap
heading to the city, to get my body back
     - Julia Jacklin

Crushing, absolutely crushing, keep listening, Julia Jacklin, best new music.


Sunday, April 21, 2019

Those Darlins

Those Darlins | "That Man" | Blur The Line |

raw, emotional, fuzzed out, with meaning, rock n roll, Her Voice.


Thursday, April 18, 2019

Brew Detective: Skies of Wonder

Fort George is damn near batting a thousand. Next up on the Brew Detective radar is Skies of Wonder, an imperial IPA that registers in at 8.7% and doesn't disappoint. Pop the pint can, and pow! Tropical smells blast your senses, there's a super slight cherry vibe too. It's tasty.

The thick haze barely creates a head before dissipating. It does leave some serious legs however. Regardless of its hazy character, it packs a bitter punch. The smell and look do not match the taste (for all of you juice-forward hazy fans), and I'm OK with that. It's unfiltered, so be on the watch when you near the bottom of the can. Skies of Wonder is available year-round, so take 'em slow.

Enjoy responsibly, 


Wednesday, April 17, 2019

(In Forest Park)

(In Forest Park)


We sat
Watching a beetle,
My reflection lit upon its shell.
You, watching the leaves flutter,
Down, down, softly down.
Then two, 
Gracefully dancing,
Causing no pain.

A baby snail

Delicate late season blooms,
Almost unnoticeable. 

- eightychoices.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Almost Navy

Matte blue
Almost navy
Big amber moon,
(Its face looking back at us)

The same force holding our feet to the ground
Holds the moon in our orbit

Wine country roads
It all hangs:
Sweet fruit
The Future
Our lives
(In the balance)
And time, 
Our most valuable resource

- eightychoices

Friday, April 12, 2019

NBA | The Second Season

Lights, cameras, action, the NBA's second season is set to kickoff on Saturday, April 13th. First round match ups are looking like a blood bath out west in the varsity conference. Back east there appears to be two good battles early on, as Brooklyn faces Philadelphia and Indiana plays Boston. The second season is upon us. To the victor goes the spoils. Here's to hoping someone spoils it for the Death Star.

The WestThe Western Conference is going to be a gauntlet. What sort of damage would the Spurs or Clippers wreak if they were in the east? The reward for LA is a series with the defending champs. San Antonio gets to travel to the Mile High City, where they will try to Popovich the feel-good Nuggets. I don't think the Clippers will win, but they will make it tough. In the event the Clip-joint do the impossible, kudos to them for reverse jinxing the Death Star after they wore the "we believe" jerseys at Oracle's finale. A team with three all-world players plus Green and Iggy, shouldn't wear anything that suggests underdog status. With that said, Doc Rivers has no love for Golden State and will most likely encourage a tribal ritual to further their chances. Good luck LA, I'm pulling for you. San Antonio on the other hand has a real shot in my opinion. They have all the pedigree and experience. Maybe Pop's squad can muster some early magic and advance to the second round against a two seed with very little experience. 

Two of the most interesting series are out west. The three six is gonna be fire. The bad news for my newest hometown team is that their diligence in securing a home seed brings them an opponent that swept them in the regular season. I'm a big Dame fan and he's one of the more unstoppable pick and roll maestros in the NBA. The flip side is OKC's defense, and if locked in, it can be smothering to say the least. Oklahoma has its own worries, George's shoulder, Westbrook's jumper, and their lack of outside shooting. I'll be pulling for Rip City regardless of my affinity for Westbrook and PG. I think the winner of this series ends up in the western conference finals. I wish the Blazers were whole, maybe "can't play Kanter" can fill the void left by Nurk's injury (if not, hello Collins). Portland's the deeper team with a solid second unit; Lil Curry, Hood, ET, and Collins can bring it. Dame and CJ versus Russ and PG should be good. Rip City was ready for a run, please basketball gods, look favorably upon the Trailblazers. This series, as well as Houston versus Utah, have the potential to be an all out slug fest.

Houston hosting Utah has the makings of a fiery feud, having faced each other last year in the second round only adds fuel to their fire. Differing playing styles will wage war during this series. I'm not sure which team has the better chance to upset the Death Star, probably Houston, but these two teams are both capable of clashing with the champs. You could easily argue that these are two of the hottest teams entering the playoffs. I'll be rooting for the Jazz, hopefully they can score enough, but there's part of me that feels like Harden is on a mission. The Rockets were a hamstring away in last year's western conference finals. The 3 through 6 seeds comprise the teams I thought could challenge Golden State. It's really any body's guess as to who will survive the first round. The Dark Side has to be the runaway favorite, duh. Will the west be represented by someone other than Golden State? Maybe the unthinkable can happen.

The EastThere seems to be less drama in the east regardless of the dreamy potential for a chalked filled second round. The fact that a non-LeBron team will be represented in The Finals for the first time since 2010 adds some gusto to the journey. Honestly though, I expect chalk to win out. There are two teams that could play eraser. Philly will get all it can handle from Brooklyn, especially if they start the playoffs with Embiid in street clothes. I've wrote it before, the 76ers could be the biggest threat to the western conference champ (or the Raptors), assuming it's the Death Star. The big what if is Embiid's knee. If Joel is his normal destroying self, Philly should smash. However, if he isn't 100 the Sixers could get got by the Nets. Philadelphia has trouble containing crafty guards. That's exactly what Brooklyn throws at it's opponents. D'Angelo Russell has been trending seriously upwards, he's got game. Brooklyn's loaded with perimeter players who are multi-positional, both on offense and defense. Their spread, off-the-top attacking offense could spell trouble for Philly, especially sans Joel. And another thing, I think Brooklyn has the better coach if it comes down to that. I think the 76ers  should win, just don't be surprised if they get upset.

When Indiana lost home court to the Celtics it probably sealed their fate. This will still be a gritty contest between teams who trend differently in more than one way. Boston possesses talent and depth, while Indiana has heart, effort and camaraderie. Which will win out? I'll go with green. It's too bad Oladipo got hurt and the Pacers fell to the 5th spot. The other eastern series should be chalk. I'd be dumbstruck if Milwaukee or Toronto lose in the first round. Giannis is ready to ruin the east, he's wired differently and his only friends wear the same jersey. I expect the Bucks to come out clicking.

MVP: Giannis or Harden, Harden or Giannis? The debate will linger far beyond the presentation of the Maurice Podoloff Trophy, that I'm sure of. Who's the more deserving candidate—a question that has two answers? The bummer is, one irreplaceable and transcendent star is going to be left empty handed. Antetokounmpo is the anti-Hollywood superstar who can do everything on both sides of floor, a gift to the NBA, a young man with humble roots, who's abilities are limitless. He has jettisoned Milwaukee to the best record and home court advantage throughout the playoffs. Giannis played in 72 games and averaged nearly 28 points, 12.5 rebounds and 6 assists. His 30.9 PER and WS of 14.4 are eye-popping. Did I mention he's also a force on defense.

James Harden is an offense by himself. Say what you will, but the Beard just averaged 36.1 points per game, plus 7.5 assists (most of those assists are three pointers, the others are lob dunks and layups). Doing a little on-the-fly math, I came up with 19, those are the points/game that Harden generates via assist. That means he's accounting for, at minimum, 55 points per game. That's an all time number. He's a supernova on offense and single handily kept Houston in the mix for a top four seed. James averaged 36.1points, 7.5 assists and 6.5 rebounds over the course of 78 games. His PER was 30.6 and he had a WS of 15.2. Did I mention he totaled 2,818 points this year!

This will be one of those years where we actually have two supremely viable candidates for MVP. You can look at my rundown of predictions for awards here. I'm still leaning towards Harden, but damn if Giannis' game against Philly didn't make me think twice. Giannis does it on both ends, James is a cheat code meant to disrobe defenses, each is immensely valuable to their team. Is it who's better, or who's more valuable? Either way it's a difficult decision. 

All-NBA: Low and behold, I had to rejigger my selections a bit for the All-NBA team. Here goes...
1st team: Harden, Dame, Giannis, PG, Jokic
2nd: Curry, Beal, Durant, Blake, Gobert
3rd: Kyrie, Westbrook, LeBron, Kawhi, Embiid

The playoffs have been injected with some new blood. Whether we make predictions with our head or with our hearts, this should be fun to watch. I'll try and revisit some topics of interest as the playoffs unfold. Buckle up, the second season is about to begin!

Only In the NBA,


Thursday, April 11, 2019

National Poetry Month

Those Darlins | "Why Can't I" | Single

April is National Poetry Month, which is awesome, because poetry is awesome. I encourage anyone to jot down some words, be it creative, inspirational, or therapeutic. Poetry is an amazing form of expression and reflection. Observation skills, and a patience to pay attention, can aid immensely in the effort. April 18th is, poem in your pocket day, a day meant to share poetry. The novel idea of personal interaction is waning considerably in today's today. Keep a poem with you; then all you have to do is share it, read it to someone, hopefully it's read to many someones. Enjoy poetry and let's all try and appreciate it a little more during the month of April, especially the 18th.

Throughout this month I've been posting some pretty powerful wordsmiths via the music I've chosen to highlight. The list includes Fiona Apple, Julia Jacklin and Jessi Zazu, all phenomenal writers that use words to further illuminate their music, their art. Quality songwriting is another form of poetry. These women represent the beauty of poetry through song.

I embrace poems. I too will offer up personal scribbles, images, memories, thoughts and emotions. Take from them what you will. The final piece of poetry's puzzle is to share them...



Ps. This is a 1 week warning, have a poem in your pocket April 18th. Poems soon to follow.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Julia Jacklin | Crushing

Best New Music |

Julia Jacklin | "Don't Know How to Keep Loving You" | Crushing |

what if I cleaned up, what if I worked on my skin
I could scrub until I am red; hot, weak, and thin
too tired to run away, what do I do now
there's nothing left to say
     - Julia Jacklin

beautiful, sad and honest, too real, and too good, can't stop listening, CRUSHING.


Sunday, April 7, 2019

Brew Detective: Pillowfist

Old Town Brewing has great branding, their small batch hazy IPA ain't too bad either. Pillowfist is unfiltered, unprocessed and unapologetic. Old Town describes Pillowfist as, "tropical, juicy, ripe"—their words, not mine. Here's my two cents...

The smell was not what I expected when popping the top. But then, the aroma regains itself and smells like old school, Dole pineapple juice. A literal pillow forms over the ale. It holds distinct notes of bitterness, which compliments and juxtaposes the nose and the appearance, a pleasant contradiction. With each drink you both smell it and taste it. Look for these in the single bottle section of your local grocer or beer shop. 

Pillowfist | 6.8%
Hops: Citra, Mosaic, Amarillo
Malt: NW Pale, Flaked Oats, Cara Foam

Enjoy responsibly,


Thursday, April 4, 2019

When the Pawn Hits the Conflicts...

Fiona Apple | "A Mistake" | When The Pawn...

So I'm gonna fuck it up again
I'm gonna do another detour
Unpave my path
And if ya wanna make sense
Whatcha lookin' at me for?
     - Fiona Apple


Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Brew Detective: Level Beer + Ground Kontrol Vintage Arcade

I've Got Next is a delicious collaboration that encourages us to, "place our quarter on the screen and crack open this hoppy pale ale while you wait for your buddy to crash and burn!" The coolest of pairings team up as Level Beer and Ground Kontrol vintage arcade, combine forces to craft a beer. I mean c'mon.

When you crack the pint can it releases an IPA-like smell. A great doughy head forms and the liquid itself is pretty much opaque. Once you taste it, it brings you back somehow to the deliciousness of a hop driven American pale ale, even though it looks like a juice bomb. It's light in color, perhaps due to the type or amount of malt. I've Got Next somehow lets everything happen gradually in the experience. I highly recommend scoring a four pack of these should you see it. It has something for everyone and registers in at 5.8%. Level up responsibly and don't forget quarters.