Tuesday, July 27, 2010

0-for-Three

It’s no secret that I have quite possibly the most one dimensional skill set in the history of basketball. Sure I can’t exactly do anything on the basketball court that requires any athleticism whatsoever, but there’s no denying that my jumpshot is as pure as a Colombian eight ball. Call me crazy, but if the objective of a sport is to put a ball through a hoop, I don’t exactly see the point in practicing irrelevant things like “defense” and “passing.” Besides, from Dominique Wilkins’ dunks to Wilt Chamberlain’s ungodly amounts of sex, there are plenty of examples of basketball players who are famous because of their greatness in just a single skill set. Anyway, because I place such an emphasis on my ability to make it rain, it seems like every time I step outside my house, someone wants to talk to me about how well I can shoot. I really can’t go anywhere without everyone asking me how I got so good at “shooting the three ball” or what it’s like “to consistently knock down the three ball.” After hearing a lot of talk about how well I shoot “the three ball”, an obvious question finally hit me the other day – didn’t some kid from my high school used to claim that he had three balls?

Ever since I graduated from tOSU about a month ago, my life as an aspiring underwear model/professional wrestler has basically consisted of playing FIFA (I can’t stress enough how much I love/hate this game. I would devote an entire blog entry to things like how Lionel Messi on FIFA 10 is easily the worst highest-rated-player-on-the-game in the history of sports video games (he’s like the antithesis of Roenick on NHL ‘94 – it’s unbelievable), but 98% of you would have no idea what I’m talking about, so I’m going to stick to writing about things with greater mass appeal, like my high school classmate’s testicles, instead. Wait, did I just do a parentheses inside parentheses in the middle of a sentence? You bet your ass I did) and half-remembering weird bits of trivia. Even though FIFA constantly frustrates me for a variety of reasons, nothing in life is more annoying to me than half-remembering things. You know what I’m talking about. You can remember things like how there used to be an old guy on the Cubs and Cardinals in the 90’s who didn’t have any ear holes on his batting helmet, but you can’t remember that his name was Gary Gaetti and he was awesome. That kinda thing.

In instances like the aforementioned one, you more than likely spend a few minutes (or days if you’re me) trying to figure out exactly what the hell that guy’s name was, before you finally give up, Google it, and then eventually move on with your life. When I was reminded about the three-balled kid, though, I didn’t have the luxury of Googling it, because Googling “kid with three balls” is simply not a good idea for a variety of reasons. This meant that my only real option was to ask a few friends from high school, but none of them could remember either. Now that it’s been almost two weeks and I still don’t know what that guy’s name was, it’s starting to consume me. Maybe it’s just the way I’m wired, but when I half-remember something, I can’t stop thinking about it until I fill in all the missing details. In this case, I can’t stop thinking about a guy with three testicles, which is a problem I would be completely fine with never having again in my life. I need this fixed and I need it fixed now.

Because I’d prefer to stop thinking about this as soon as possible, I’m turning to the Trillion Man March for help, even though I completely understand that just about all of you didn’t go to my high school and therefore have no idea who I’m talking about (although, there’s a chance you went to college with him or something, since I don’t know what happened to him after high school). But for the handful of readers who did go to BHS, here’s a list of things I know about him:

  1. He claimed to have three testicles. But you knew that already.
  2. He “played” football, much like I “played” basketball at OSU
  3. A friend told me that he remembers the kid put tape over his nipples for football practice because he had them pierced (so I guess you could say he was pretty badass)
  4. His last name was “____berry”
  5. He had a very punchable face

That’s all I got. If you know who I’m talking about, please send me an email as quickly as you can, so I can go back to living my life. Again, I understand most of you don’t care about this, but think for a second what it would be like to not be able to remember that kid’s name from your high school who had a rattail and kept a samurai sword in his locker all year without the teachers knowing (if you went to my HS, his name was Charles Crum). That’s what I’m dealing with. If you were to make a movie about my high school experience (and you absolutely wouldn’t because it consisted of playing Jenga on Saturday nights with my family while the rest of the cool kids were in a cornfield on the outskirts of town trying to touch cheerleaders in their naughty places), this kid would be one of the characters, yet I can’t remember his name. It means nothing to any of you, but for a guy like me who prides himself on having a great memory, especially for trivial things, this is a very big deal. So email me ASAP if you know who the kid is, because this is becoming a much bigger deal than it needs to be. It’s become such a big deal, in fact, that you could even say it’s driving me nuts.

UPDATE: Many of you have emailed me to suggest that I look in my high school yearbook to find Mr. Threeball. While I can't say I thought of that, it wouldn't matter anyway because for whatever reason I didn't get a yearbook in high school. I regret this decision already. I'm calling everyone I know who might have the yearbook to sort all of this out. Thanks for your concern.

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I know, I know. This post sucked. I didn’t write it for you, though. I wrote it because I have an enormous character flaw of not being able to let things go and I’m desperate. Sorry. To make up for this letdown and at least give you some sort of reward for reading through all of that, here’s a video of Club Trillion fans from Columbus that makes my Mr. Rainmaker video look like it was easier than a Michigan cheerleader. It was sent in to me by John Jones, who made the video with his friends (and claimed that a few of them are wearing Club Tril shirts in the video). There’s your shout-out, John. And here’s your video.

Proud To Be An American But Even Prouder To Be A Buckeye,

Mark Titus

Club Trillion Founder

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Harlem & Me

I remember when I was ten-years-old and I played basketball with my brother in our driveway whenever I could find time between flirting with girls on AOL and being very sexually confused thanks to a curvy Lorrie Morgan kinda looking like Macaulay Culkin in her “Something In Red” video.

MacLorrie Culkin

“Get down on your knees and tell me ya love me.”

After I would give my brother a steady dose of buckets and rainmaking with a few games of one-on-one, we would seemingly always decide to team up and act like we were the Harlem Globetrotters playing against a ghost defense.  This pretty much just consisted of us throwing behind the back passes to each other, but for those 30 minutes, we thought we were the best athletes in the world. Why did we do this?  Because we were suburban white kids, which meant that playing for the Globetrotters was an unattainable fantasy.  I was so convinced that there was a rule banning white players from joining the Globetrotters that I specifically remember thinking that “Harlem” wasn’t a neighborhood in Manhattan, but was instead a word used interchangeably with “African-American”.  At the time, I still thought I had a chance to play in the NBA, so when it came time for me to play out a basketball dream sequence in my driveway, I always chose the Globetrotter routine because it was the one thing I knew that I would never do.  Until now.

I’m sure most of you have probably heard, but I was drafted by the Harlem Globetrotters about a month ago, which immediately prompted a couple of questions from just about anyone who heard the news:

  1. The Globetrotters have a draft?
  2. The Globetrotters have white people?

Apparently the answer to both of those questions is yes, although they both seem to be a rarity, as I was told that this is just the fourth draft they’ve had and I would be only the third white guy in their 84 year history.  As exciting as the news of being drafted was, the story behind how I found out couldn’t be more boring.  Unless, maybe, Ben Stein read it to you or something.

I found out about being drafted when I checked my voicemail after I got done rehabbing my shoulder one day.  A guy claiming to be with the Globetrotters informed me that I had been selected for their draft and he left a number for me to call. I naturally thought it was a prank, but I called back anyway and realized rather quickly that it wasn’t a prank at all.  He asked me for my address so he could send me a jersey (and a headband), and then told me that the next step is for me to come to training camp in New York in late September. That really is all I know.  I haven’t heard anything since and I have no idea of specific dates this training camp is supposed to take place, but when I find out more details I’ll be sure to let the Trillion Man March know.  I told you it was boring.

Even though I don’t know exactly what I’m supposed to do next, I’m taking this opportunity very seriously, which is why I’ve begun continued mastering the half-court shot (hit four in a row the other day) and I carry a bucket of confetti with me at all times.  I already know that from the onset I’ll be faced with tons of pressure to turn the team around from their dismal 99% winning percentage, but as the franchise player it’s a challenge I’m ready for.  My theory is that their terrible winning percentage is a reflection of their entertainment-first attitude that features a little too much goofing off.  That’s why on the first day of training camp, I plan on getting into the triple threat position right before I punch one of my teammates square in the mouth.  Doing this will have a two-pronged effect. First, it will stress the importance of fundamentals to my teammates. But most importantly, it will also send the message that even though I may look like a marshmallow in a bag of charcoal, I’m not there to screw around. ___________________________________________________

Your awesome YouTube was sent in to my by Thomas from Bethesda. There’s your shout-out, Thomas. And here’s your video.

Proud To Be An American But Even Prouder To Be A Buckeye,

Mark Titus

Club Trillion Founder

Friday, July 16, 2010

Club Trillion 2.0

Before I would inevitably go on to write about how awesome I am as a way to mask my many insecurities, it seems like I used to begin all of my blog entries by apologizing to the Trillion Man March for taking a long time off in between posts (kind of like I’m doing now). In the past, I would take a break from writing because I was too busy either trying to pass my classes, antagonizing Evan “The Villain” Turner, or spending hours on pointless, yet entertaining websites like this (why would I write when I can make pelvic thrusts while hitting the “N” key on that site all day?). This time around, though, my sabbatical was different. I didn’t take a break from writing in May because I found more strangely entertaining websites to waste time on (not exactly true - I did come across this and this). I stopped writing simply because the blog stopped being fun for me. I was a victim of my own success and couldn’t handle the burden it all became. I was overwhelmed with pressure and I wanted to take the easy way out so I could just hang out with my friends.

Basically, I was LeBron.

It became obvious to me a few months ago that my blog was stale. I didn’t enjoy writing it anymore and, judging from the feedback I got, people didn’t enjoy reading it anymore (still can’t figure out why the people who didn’t like it continued to read). What made the blog so much fun for me in the first place was that I wrote each and every blog post without caring about what anyone thought of them. I was concerned with telling funny stories from my life, not the number of page hits I averaged per day or whether or not my blog had mass appeal. Somewhere along the line, though, all of this changed and writing became a chore. That’s why I made the decision a couple of months back to retire from blogging (you probably don’t remember, since my retirement was overshadowed by Amanda Bynes’ retirement from acting and, hopefully, using a fart machine to be a huge cockblock, cause that’s just not cool).

The primary goal behind my “retirement” was for me to gauge how much I actually enjoyed writing my blog. If I stopped writing for awhile, realized it was a huge weight off my shoulders, and I didn’t miss it one bit, I probably wouldn’t have ever started blogging again. Instead, I found that after two months of doing virtually no writing whatsoever, I started to have a weird feeling. You know the weird feeling you get when you stick your finger too far down your bellybutton and hit the right spot? Yeah, it wasn’t like that at all – I just wondered if anyone else noticed how awkward that feels. No, mine was more of a “your only contribution to society is your blog and without it you’re a nobody” weird feeling. Ya know, the kind of weird feeling that gives you a kick in the pants and reminds you that nobody cares how good you are at FIFA 10, even if you do beat a five star team on “Legendary” difficulty (like I’ve done).

With all of that being said, I’ve obviously decided to start blogging again, but in a lot of ways I’m starting a new blog rather than resuming the old one. Since my days on the Ohio State basketball team are over, I’ll be forced to make the blog more about my personal life and my weird random thoughts and less about how I check out cheerleaders instead of watching the games or how I try to make postgame handshake lines as awkward as possible. I’ll still write frequently about sports, or more specifically my basketball “career” (the story of how I got drafted by the Harlem Globetrotters is coming soon), but nothing is off limits anymore. In other words, the blog will become much more irrelevant and even more uninteresting than it already was. So you have that to be excited about.

Besides making the blog irrelevant and uninteresting, the other drastic change is my plan to write short posts more often rather than waiting two weeks to write 5,000 words. I know I’m somewhat contradicting myself with this post, but in the future I plan to make this more of a traditional blog that basically consists of posts that are only two or three paragraphs. By doing this, I allow myself a chance to write about things I think are mildly interesting but aren’t important enough to warrant an entire eight paragraph blog post. Things like my hatred of receipts or how my girlfriend and I recently got engaged (just kidding, baby! You’re definitely worth eight paragraphs!). Finally, the last major change with the blog is that I’ll no longer continue the recurring theme of linking to my Mr. Rainmaker video (see what I did there?). Sorry to disappoint.

Whether it was a guilt trip or just an overwhelming sense of boredom, something compelled me to start blogging again and I’m glad it did. After all, it wouldn’t be right for me to turn my back on the blog, considering it has done more for me than oversized sunglasses have done for ugly girls.

Seriously, though, have you noticed how hard it is to tell if chicks are attractive now that they all wear sunglasses covering half their faces? Of course you have. The same problem exists when trying to determine if a girl is of legal age or not. That’s why I just stopped going to high school proms and Justin Bieber concerts altogether. What’s that? Admitting that makes me sound like a pedophile? And I’m engaged? Oh, I guess you’re right. Whoops. Let’s move on.

I guess the purpose of this post was to inform you that even though I’m bringing the blog back, I’m not exactly bringing the blog back. If you came to the blog only because you liked reading the behind the scenes stories of college basketball, this blog is probably no longer for you. But, if you read this blog because you know what it’s like to be a benchwarmer in some regard and you can’t help but laugh at jokes about farts, you might be in luck. So welcome to Club Trillion 2.0. It will feel a lot like the old blog, only now far less people will read it because it won’t be nearly as good. Ultimately I’ll get a real job where I write about things that actually matter, but until then I’m going to have some fun on my blog, because I’m an unemployed college graduate who has nothing better to do. There promises to be a few cool things within the next month, so stick around and check them out. Or don’t. It’s your call. Just know that if you stop reading, we’re all going to make fun of you on here because we know you’ll never see it. But I guess if you want to relive your sophomore year of high school when all the cool kids talked behind your back, well, that’s your prerogative.

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I’m going to continue the awesome basketball-related YouTubes at the end of posts, mostly because it’s a way for me to guarantee that anyone who reads the blog will be entertained by at least one thing. So email me your favorite YouTube that has some sort of tie to basketball, but please make sure it’s awesome. In return, I’ll give you a shout-out, which is pretty much the most significant gift I can give to anyone. When I thought I was done blogging, I deleted all the old fan submissions for YouTubes to use, so I’m not going to give any shout-outs this time around, but I’ll still include a video I found on my own. In the future, I hope to use exclusively fan submissions, so send and re-send anything you come across. In the meantime, here’s Bill Walton being Bill Walton.

Proud To Be An American But Even Prouder To Be A Buckeye,

Mark Titus

Club Trillion Founder