Boston and Sports

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I go to school in North Carolina but I’m from Boston. After this week, with the Boston Marathon bombings on Monday and the showdown at Watertown on Friday, I’ve gotten a lot of questions from people in NC about why it matters that other city’s sports teams show support for Boston teams. Especially since what happened had nothing to do with sports and the teams weren’t anywhere near the Boston Marathon. Since I’ve gotten so many questions, I figured I’d write a little something here incase other people are wondering the same thing. Personally I feel like sports are a catalyst for hope. I can’t explain it but to have the New York Yankees say “hey, we got your back” feels truly amazing. It helps me deal with what’s going on in a way that seems almost normal. What happened in Boston is a big thing for anyone to wrap their head around. Sports are a way to heal from that. Another thing is that Boston sports teams are a huge part of the Boston community. We think of the Red Sox, the Bruins, the Celtics, and the Patriots as our boys. We stand behind them 100%, and in return the athletes have a huge space in their hearts for the people of Boston. So even though they’re from all around the country and the world, they’re all Bostonians. And when someone attacks our home, everyone is affected. To see other teams show support for our’s feels really great. We know they’re being taken care of. Here are some examples of support from this week. These are only a handful out of many. Ballparks across the country also played Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond before, during, or after games. Sweet Caroline is a Fenway favorite.

Chicago Tribune’s sports page on Tuesday

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Phillies Outfielder Ben Revere

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Phoenix Coyotes defenseman Keith Yandle wears a warm up jersey with the name Martin Richard, an 8 year old boy killed in the blast at the finish line

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Hats worn by Mississippi State’s baseball team

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Pittsburg Penguins’ helmets

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National Anthem tribute by the New Jersey Devils

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Heralded as the biggest rivalry in sports, the New York Yankees stand with Boston

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A 7 year old Cleveland boy gave Red Sox’s 2nd baseman, Dustin Pedroia, this note before the Boston Red Sox played the Cleveland Indians on Tuesday night. Dustin hung it in the dugout.

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Rocky Balboa Speech

This is my all time favorite speech from a movie. It’s been a long, tough week and I found myself listening to this again. I used to listen to this to get myself pumped up before games back in high school. It really it homes. Give it a listen. Text is at the bottom.

Sylvester Stallone in Rocky Balboa [2006]

The World Ain’t All Sunshine and Rainbows Speech

“Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done! Now if you know what you’re worth then go out and get what you’re worth. But you gotta be willing to take the hits, and not pointing fingers saying you ain’t where you wanna be because of him, or her, or anybody! Cowards do that and that ain’t you! You’re better than that!” – Rocky Balboa

 

 

Boston

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The tweet above was posted by a Batman parody account yesterday and I can’t express how true it is. By now everyone has heard about what happened in Boston on Monday. I’m currently going to school in North Carolina so I was thankfully a thousand miles away. But my family and friends were there. My Dad was at his office three blocks away. My friend crossed the finish line 3 minutes before. Another friend was standing about 500 yards away. I’ve been experiencing a lot of emotions over the past two days and I’m not really sure how I feel. There is one thing I do know. I have NEVER been prouder of my city (even after the 2004 World Series). I’ve always known Boston to be a community that stands united and displays extreme resilience and perseverance. And now the whole world will know the same.

7-Year-Old Cancer Patient Scores Touchdown

I love sports, like many people. I believe sports are a great way to learn teamwork, sportsmanship, and humility, and of course have some fun while you’re at it. But the biggest reason I love sports is that it has the ability to transcend past just one player, one team, and one game; it has the ability to reach out and paint a bigger picture, to touch humanity and remind the world of what’s really important. Yesterday during Nebraska’s Spring Game they sent out a player who fights for a greater cause, 7-year-old Jack Hoffman who is currently fighting brain cancer. With 60,174 people watching from the stands, Jack took the field.

Check out the full story at ESPN by clicking here.

Batman and Philosophy

Batman and PhilosophyI just finished reading this book for the 5th time. This is one of my favorite books to read when I’m in the mood for some fun. I love philosophy and Batman is a fascinating subject. Each chapter is written by a different philosopher so there are many different perspectives that are combined. This book will satisfy a die-hard Batman comic fan and yet it’s still comprehensible for someone who has only seen the Christopher Nolan movies. I highly suggest!

MLB 2013 Predictions

With the first game of the season taking place tomorrow, I’ve decided it’s time to make my 2013 MLB predictions official.

American League:

MVP: Mike Trout

Cy Young Award: Clayton Kershaw or Justin Verlander

ALCS: Angels over Rays

National League:

MVP: Matt Kemp

Cy Young Award: Stephen Strasburg

NLCS: Dodgers over Reds

World Series: Dodgers over Angels

I’m not even going to bother trying to predict Rookie of the Year. There will be stars that will bust and underdogs that will shine, as it is every year in baseball. However I suggest looking out for Bryce Harper (NL: Nationals), Jedd Gyorko (NL: Padres), Matt Moore (AL: Rays), and Aaron Hicks (AL: Twins).

Filming The Empire Strikes Back Opening Crawl

My inner nerd couldn’t resist. Who doesn’t love Star Wars? Stumbled upon this picture today while browsing The PhotoMag. It’s amazing to think how far film technology and editing software have come. Check out the full post here http://www.thephotomag.com/2013/03/behind-scenes-shots-from-popular-movies.html

Filming The Empire Strikes Back Credits Roll

5 Songs Beautifully Used In Films

Here is my opinion on some of the best uses of songs in a movie scene; film scores are excluded. These are in no particular order because I don’t particularly like ranking things. I’m not a sap so don’t worry, there’s no ‘My Heart Will Go On’ on this list

 

The Departed: I’m Shipping Up To Boston by The Dropkick Murpheys

It might just be my roots, but the movie and the use of the song are perfection. Just a heads up, there are some f-bombs dropped in this scene.

 

 

Warrior: About Today by The National

Spoiler alert! This is the ending of the movie so if you plan on watching it (and I highly suggest you do) it may not be wise to watch this clip. About Today is a beautiful song on its own and this scene would not be half as emotional without it. The intro and outro of the song was edited by Mark Isham for the movie. I will admit I cried the first time I watched it on the big screen. Be reminded these two characters are brothers!

 

 

The Graduate: The Sound of Silence and Mrs. Robinson by Simon & Garfunkel

I couldn’t comprise this list without including The Graduate and Simon & Garfunkel. Whether or not a song is effective in a film is pure opinion; however it is a fact that The Graduate changed how film utilizes soundtracks. The Sound of Silence and Mrs. Robinson, in my opinion, are the two most strongest songs in the film. I spent awhile debating which one was more effective, then I gave up and decided “What the hey, let’s put them both in.”

 

 

 

Remember The Titans: Peace Train by Cat Stevens

It only last about a minute, but the use of this song creates a huge emotional resonance that leaves me with goosebumps.

 

 

The Breakfast Club – Don’t You (Forget About Me) by Simple Minds

I don’t think I need to explain this one. I’ll leave you with this.

 

Hear You Me – Jimmy Eat World

Music has always been a way for me to deal with emotions and understanding what’s going on around me. Two weeks ago from today, my friend Tony suddenly passed away. Ironically just the week before I had rediscovered the song Hear You Me by Jimmy Eat World on my iPod. After all that’s happened, the lyrics really speak to me. I feel like Jimmy Eat World is a very under-rated band. Most known for their song The Middle, most people don’t look past that but they’ve come out with some really solid albums.

“A song for a heart so big, God wouldn’t let it live.” – Jimmy Eat World

To This Day – Shane Koyczan

A friend shared this video with me, and it was so powerful that I want to share it with you. This is a poem by Shane Koyczan based from his real life experience with being bullied as a kid. I think everyone can find something they relate to in this poem, whether you were bullied, the bully, or have had no interaction with bullying at all. Enjoy. If this video impacts you in any way, please share it. Help Shane get his message out.

“To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.” – Oscar Wilde

This is a quote that can having you thinking for days. What is the purpose of life? What is living? Am I making the most out of my life? I like this quote because it makes you want to get off your butt and go do something productive. You only have one life, so don’t waste it.

Chasing 3000

Chasing 3000A simply magical work of art. This film tells the story of Mickey and his younger brother Roger, who as muscular dystrophy, as they travel cross-country to see Roberto Clemente’s 3,000th hit in the 1972 season. The only problem is that their mother doesn’t know and Mickey only has a learner’s permit. This is a well served dish of character development with a side of baseball. You don’t have to love baseball to appreciate this movie, but if you do it just makes it that much more enjoyable. This film captures the true romanticism of the game. This independent film was released in 2008, and I’m honestly shocked that it hasn’t gained a bigger reception. I highly recommend checking this movie out if you’re in the mood for a heart-felt story. A+ to Chasing 3000.

 

If you’d like to learn more, access Chasing 3000’s IMDB page by clicking here.

Red Sox Nation: Four Days in October

In honor of pitchers and catchers officially reporting in on Monday, I’ve decided it’s time for a baseball post. I grew up in Massachusetts, meaning I was born a Boston Red Sox fan. It’s in my blood. I was raised on bed time stories of greats like Ted Williams, Carl Yastremski, and Bobby Doer.  No Red Sox fan (or Yankees fan) can forget the 2004 American League Championship Series. Down 3-0 in the series to the New York Yankees, the Sox rallied to clinch the 2004 ALCS and would go on to win the the World Series. There’s a magic in baseball, and it was shown in abundance at Fenway Park that night the Sox won game 4 of the ALCS. I was 12 years old at the time and remember being allowed to stay up late to watch to the game. The momentum that carried Boston to come back and take the series all stemmed from one play. Check it out here in ESPN’s Four Days in October:

“Don’t believe everything you see on the internet.”  – Abraham Lincoln

A Silent Film

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You know when you stumble upon a band and just know they’re something special? Ladies and gentlemen, I introduce you to A Silent Film. I never heard of them before last night. I made a last minute decision to attend a concert at The Fillmore in Charlotte, NC where four bands were performing, the last band up was A Silent Film. During the first song off their set list I could already tell they were a rare gem. Hailing all the way from the UK, A Silent Film are an alternative rock band with poetic flowing lyrics and a strong indie vibe.

Robert Stevenson – Vocals/Piano
Karl Bareham – Guitar
Ali Hussain – Bass
Spencer Walker – Drums

After listening to their recorded music today, I have to say they’re even better live. They did an amazing job last night and the energy of the crowd was incredible. I’m definitely seeing them again as soon as I get the chance. I was truly amazed with how connected they were with their own music. You could tell they absolutely love what they do and that’s what music is all about. I have no doubt they’ll make it big time. Here’s a video a fan took at the show, they covered Bruce Springsteen’s Streets of Philadelphia for their encore: (believe me it was more energetic than this during the show!)

Check out their new single Harbour Lights:

Love it? You can get this song and plenty more on iTunes

Check out their website for more information by clicking here

“Adversity has the effect of eliciting talents, which in prosperous circumstances would have lain dormant.” – Horace

Milestone

JabberFeed went international today! I never imagined this blog would get this kind of reception. Thank you so much! You guys are awesome!

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8 Year Old Batman Fan With Leukemia Receives Call from Christian Bale

Another reason to add to the list of why Christian Bale is one of my favorite actors. Zach Guillot is an 8 year old boy with leukemia, and is probably the happiest Batman fan in the world. He received the surprise of his life when he received an unexpected phone call from Christian Bale, his favorite actor. His mother recorded the conversation and posted it on YouTube. Bale stayed on the phone for ten minutes to discuss Zach’s favorite super hero. One of the most heartwarming things I’ve heard about in awhile.

“Anyone can be Batman, anyone can be as strong as him.”

- Christian Bale

Tyler Ward – 5th Year YouTube Anniversary

I’ve been wanting to do a Tyler Ward post ever since I started this blog, however I wanted it to be great and do him justice. I thought today would be an excellent time to sit down and finally do this post because 5 years ago, on this day, he posted his first ever YouTube video. About 3 years ago I stumbled onto an amazing cover artist on YouTube. Since then he has become very special to me and he has become very successful. I’m not a huge fan of covers, but Tyler’s are amazing. He puts such raw emotion into each song, whether it’s happiness  sadness, contempt, angst, love. His voice and skill with a guitar are amazing (and it doesn’t hurt that he’s very good looking)! Check out his cover of Somewhere With You originally performed by Kenny Chesney:

The biggest problem cover artists have is the switch to releasing original material . Tyler Ward’s original songs are just as amazing (if not better!) than his covers. For the past couple years he has been releasing a few on YouTube every now and then, but on September 25th of this year he released his first original album, an EP titled Hello. Love. Heartbreak. (pictured below). Featuring six songs, this EP takes a step away from Tyler’s usual sound and embracing a more alternative pop-rock feel. It’s an album you can jam out to in the car and sing your heart out. You rarely find an album that is worth listening to every single song on the track-list, but Hello. Love. Heartbreak. is one of those rare gems. I can’t count the amount of times I’ve listened to that album start to finish. Each song is as good as the last, you can really tell he put a lot of work to make this album perfect.

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What makes Tyler Ward such a great artist is not only his musical ability, but a big contribution is his personality. This guy is not afraid to be himself and that’s something that’s hard to find these days. He really does have a heart of gold. He’s always takes time out to interact with his fans and puts in the hard work it takes to be successful. He’s an outgoing, energetic, and sometimes crazy guy, and you really see it in his videos and while he’s on stage. I was blessed with the opportunity to go see him in concert twice this year, once in Charlotte and once in Boston, and it was hands down the best concert I’ve ever been to. Everyone was on their feet the whole time and he was so engaging with the crowd. His music is perfect concert music, where you can’t help but rocking out and singing along.

Tyler

Here’s a picture that I took of him while at the concert in Charlotte. I think it captures his fun-loving nature perfectly. At the end of the show, he came out and sat down with crowd. He was very humble about how lucky he was to be able to play his music and tour. He ended with an acoustic cover of Amazing Grace that was absolutely beautiful. I highly suggest going to one of his concert’s if you ever get the chance to. Tickets were only $20 and the show is definitely worth every penny.

To hear more of his music, check out his YouTube channel

Hello. Love. Heartbreak. can be found on iTunes for only $5 by clicking here!

Keep on rocking Tyler!

“A ship in a harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.”

- William Shedd

A brilliant metaphor for life. We can play it safe and take risks, but then we are not living to our full potential. In order to be successful you have to put yourself out there and be willing to do the work.

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