Wednesday, December 04, 2002

WTAE-TV Sponsors Project Bottoms-Up Telethon

Stemming from the success of this year’s Project Bundle-Up, The Salvation Army and WTAE-TV announced plans to hold another telethon aimed at local disadvantaged college students. Project Bottoms-Up will provide collegians ages 21 to 25 with alcoholic beverages to help them fight off the winter chill.

“These days, kids aren’t too keen on wearing hand-me-downs,” said telethon emcee Joe DeNardo. “But they need to stay warm somehow. Believe me, alcohol is a better insulator than some ratty, old parka.”

The three-hour, live broadcast telethon will feature music, entertainment, and appearances by local celebrities including former Pittsburgh Panthers Head Coach Johnny Majors and former Allegheny County Judge Patrick McFalls.

“I wish they had this kind of charity when I was in school,” McFalls said in a telephone interview from an undisclosed alcohol rehabilitation facility.

During the event, sober volunteers will take small groups of students on bar-hopping excursions around the city and also help them navigate their way through Wine and Spirits Shops.

“If I can save just one kid from freezing his ass off this winter by purchasing a case of Jim Beam...well I consider that a sound investment,” volunteer Debbie Shaver said.

Through fundraising efforts, the generosity of the community, and donations from area bars, liquor stores, and beer distributors, organizers estimate that over 50,000 students will benefit from Project Bottoms-Up. Eligibility is based on economic needs and the accessibility to free beer, therefore fraternity members are exempt. “Sure, it’s true that alcohol only creates an illusion of warmth,” DeNardo said, “but we hope to generate enough donations so that these kids can drink themselves numb until spring arrives.” Applications are available at the University Beverage Center, Craig Street Distributing, and Mellinger's Beer Distributor.

Rendell Vows To Do Nothing For South Oakland

Newly elected Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell made thousands of promises to millions of voters in hundreds of neighborhoods across the state. However

“It’s a shit hole,” Rendell commented. “Broken bottles, human [excrement], no place to park, litter in the streets, and run-down housing. This place is worthless to me, the city of Pittsburgh, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.”

Rendell has appropriated zero dollars from the state to improve the ailing community. In addition, Rendell has not appointed any representational resources to the neighborhood. Also, the neighborhood will not be chosen as a “weed and seed” district in which the state allocates money to rebuild struggling communities.

“‘Weed and seed,’ are you kidding me?” said Rendell. “I’m no horticulture expert, but I’ve never heard of any life form which can grow out of vomit, urine, and passed out frat boys.”

While Rendell remains opposed to South Oakland reform, spin doctors warn this policy could potentially alienate the incumbent from the nearly 28 registered South Oakland voters in the next election.

Mayor Murphy Now Working on "Plan U"

Mayor Tom Murphy has been dedicated towards Downtown re-development ever since he offered up his initial plan for golden triangle improvements in 1997. Since an aging Allegheny County population rejected that proposal, Murphy has offered subsequent Plan B-T’s, which have likewise been refused.

Now Murphy is heading back to the drawing board and has come up with a plan which he believes is sure to please both city dwellers and Allegheny County voters.

Murphy’s Plan U is a four tiered plan which he believes will “significantly enhance” quality of life for both visitors and residents of Downtown Pittsburgh. Murphy’s Plan U calls for a ten thousand dollar enticement to:
(1) bring a brand new Dollar General store to the former site of the Fifth Avenue five-and-dime
(2) Lazarus to change and replace a burned out street light in front of its side door
(3) removal of all BL4CK H4M posters from downtown dumpsters, and for (4) all downtown convenience stores to carry Rap Snacks.

“I believe I have finally found the magic formula which will draw suburbanites Downtown,” Murphy declared. “By bringing light, both metaphorically, and in actuality, with the new Lazarus light bulb, by removing unwanted blight, and offering potential for dollar bargains and hip inner city snacks, we have uncovered a winning combination for urban improvement.”

Murphy’s intuitions were backed up by Pitt sophomore John Washington who supported the plan. “Shit yeah, I’d go Downtown if they had Rap Snacks. Those Juvenile ‘Barbequein’ with my Honey’ chips are bomb.”

However, not all Pittsburgh residents are as enthusiastic as Washington. City Council President Bob O’Connor has vowed to fight Murphy’s proposal with filibusters if necessary. He is apparently unhappy with the mayor’s backing of Rap Snacks. “Everyone knows Troyer Farm chips are the way to go,” said an upset O’Connor. “They’re light, airy, and fluffy. They are plain and simply a superior snack food.”

Murphy’s proposal is pending city and county council approval, and, if approved, will be enacted starting in Fall 2003.

Local Bars Offering "Suicide Specials" to Capitalize on Seasonal Depression

The sign outside of Denny’s Bar says it all: Santa’s Special: $5 Wild Turkey Fuck-it Buckets! That’s 5 Gallons of Bourbon for only $5!

In an attempt to cash-in on seasonal depression, many South Oakland bars are offering all-you-can-drink specials so patrons can slowly gulp themselves into a state of drunken indifference over the holidays. Recent studies indicate that over 75% of the population suffers from the “winter doldrums,” a sub-clinical level of Seasonal Affective Disorder, brought about by stress, fatigue, over-commercialization, and family togetherness.

“Suicide rates skyrocket around the holidays,” said Mad Mex owner John Fillmore, “and it’s easier to put a shot in your mouth than a shotgun. That’s why we’re offering 25-cent tequila shooters from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. now through New Year's Eve. Here at Mad Mex our philosophy is ‘when life gives you lemons, break out the tequila!’”

Peter’s Pub, usually a haven for upbeat alcoholic revelry, will hold Unhappy Hour every evening from 5 to 7, featuring dollar Jagermeister pints. It’s burly bouncer Dave Graver’s job to see that patrons are sufficiently suicidal before entering the bar.

“If they look even the slightest bit happy I’ll call them names and give them a wedgie or something,” Graver said.

After Unhappy Hour at Peter’s, gloomy drinkers can head down Oakland Avenue to Fuel and Fuddle, home of J.C.’s 100 Beers Cult. Now through the end of December, customers can try and drink all 100 beers in one day!

“We’re not like most cults,” said manager Rob Goode. “Chugging arsenic-laced Kool-Aid isn’t an obligation of membership. Fuel and Fuddle’s only stipulation is that you drink $500 worth of beer in 24 hours. If Mark Nordenberg can do it … anyone can.”

Bootlegger’s bartender Bob Talbot is hopeful that the holiday blues will generate lots of green.

“I can’t wait for our ‘Pitcher of Bacardi 151 for $1.51’ special!” he said. “I plan on making a killing in tips. No pun intended.”

Christmas In Oakland

(Click to enlarge.)

Pederson Welcomes Winners of Season Ticket Lottery

Earlier this year, the University of Pittsburgh announced that only some students were going to be given the opportunity to purchase season tickets for the 2002-2003 Men’s Basketball season. Not only is this season the first to be played in the newly built Petersen Event Center, but also follows a year which saw the Panthers advance to the semi-finals of the NCAA tournament. Knowing public demand would be high and the university would stand to make a considerably larger profit selling season tickets at full prices, the Athletic Department chose to minimize the amount of tickets made available to students at discounted prices. Those students looking to be eligible to purchase season tickets had their names placed into a lottery system.

The fervor surrounding “who would win” ran wild around Oakland and the Pitt community throughout the school year, while the mystery of what wonders lay within the Events Center grew larger. “Nobody ever goes in… nobody ever comes out,” said one crazy looking knife-cart-pushing man near the entrance. Finally, this past month, the lucky winners of the “Season Ticket” were announced.

Winners were sent their tickets, on which was printed:

Greetings to you, the lucky winner of this Season Ticket from Mr. Steve Pederson. Present this ticket at the Events Center gates at ten o’clock in the afternoon of the twenty-third day of November and do not be late. In your wildest dreams you could not imagine the marvelous surprises that await you!

“I’ve got a season ticket!” sang Charlie Bucket, one of the winners. “I’ve got a season pass to watch the games. And with a season ticket, it’s a golden day.”

Finally, on November 23, the first regular season basketball game was held, and those lucky season ticket winners were escorted personally by Mr. Steve Pederson into the Events Center for a grand tour, before the game began. “Come with me,” Pederson began, “and you’ll be in a world of Pitt imagination.” Pederson could hardly contain his own excitement and awe inside the new state-of-the-art facility. “If you want to view the University of Pittsburgh’s new athletic/academic paradise, simply look around and view it.”

Pitt Junior Wonders What the Hell's Going On With Iraq

It is a subject which has been on the minds of most Americans across the country for months. However, for one University of Pittsburgh junior, the looming war with Iraq and its threat of acquiring nuclear weapons is a subject of confusion.

“I know whatever it is, it’s not good,” Pitt junior Jeremy Cassel declared. “Maybe something about a war because they did something to us. I think they might have said something bad to President Bush or his father.”

Cassel’s difficulty understanding current events issues stems from his failure to read or watch a local or national news outlet. Cassel has apparently not seen a news headline since this past summer when he witnessed a CNN news piece about a potential drought for the East Coast while waiting for his Atwood Street barber, Joe Bellasario.

“Yeah, I guess this summer was pretty hot,” remembered Cassel. “There was maybe not enough water in Philadelphia, so people couldn’t wash their cars or something. Maybe we’re warring with Iraq to get more water so we can wash our cars again?”

Cassel’s closest encounter with a news story about the potential Iraqi conflict came while smoking marijuana with roommate Geoff Lewis. Cassel apparently caught a Daily Show spoof on the subject, but was reportedly too high to understand its implications.

South Oakland Tits Expected to Bounce Back in '03

Chief South Oakland breast forecaster Donald Wideman has predicted a favorable upswing for horny, undergraduate males on the lookout for chesticular scenery this coming year. Wideman predicts a big bounce back starting in the second quarter of 2003.

“Those getting discouraged by the market need to be patient,” advised Wideman. “The current breast climate is not the same one you’ll see towards the early part of 2003 when the market will start to peak. The best thing watchers can do right now is pick out potential prospects and wait for them to pan out.”

Wideman explains the current cleavage drought is due to several conjoining factors. He cited cold weather, which causes females to pile on layers, a current trend towards wool sweaters, and a worldwide reactionary fashion movement against Pop-Star Christina Aguilera’s latest makeover.

“I think once spring starts to arrive, you’re going to see a tube top/tank top resurgence which will really spark the jugular impetus needed for a full recovery,” continued Wideman.

While Wideman says the turn around is still months away, breast watchers do not need to hibernate until spring. He recommended some tips for power players to stay active during the current dry spell.

“Although the cold weather brings increased coverage, watchers still need to remember that it provides valuable opportunities for hard-nipple spotting. And while breast spying on the street is at a low, keep in mind high-yielding virtual alternatives. I personally explore ‘skin-a-max,’, and reruns of Felicity when the market’s stalled. The opportunities are there, you just have to know where to find them.”

What South Oakland treats are you leaving for Santa this Christmas?

(Click to enlarge.)

Point / Weaker Point: Responsibility

My Son Is So Responsible
By Evelyn Mathers

I am so proud of my little Billy. He’s a junior now at Pitt, majoring in Engineering. Ever since he was little, he loved to play with his erector sets and create structures, building them higher and higher each time. His grandparents gave him a chemistry set when he was young and he would spend hours concocting new potions and showing us his experiments.

Billy’s father and I are amazed at his accomplishments. He’s always been responsible by budgeting and saving money for his future. He has a work-study job and pays his own bills, but his father and I decided recently to help him out with the rent. I know how tough it is to be a full-time student and make ends meet. I don’t want him to have to worry about balancing too many jobs and school just to keep his head above water. His studies are the most important thing right now. My little Billy is going to have a successful, high-profile career in Chemical Engineering and nothing's going to stop him.

Dude, Check Out This New Three-Foot Bong I Bought
By William Mathers, Jr.

So, dude, check this out! Ain’t it sweet? I just got it this week…man, I can’t tell you how awesome it hits. My job’s been sucking lately and they’ve been making me work more hours. And I’ve been spending all my time at Jody’s house because they’ve always got weed there.

I guess I kind of have been neglecting my school shit. I might fail two of my classes, but that’s all right cause I’m having a good time. Now’s the time, right? Fuck school anyway. I’ll be able to find a job when I get out.

I’ve been working so much that I needed a release. I can’t have all my money go to bills. So I told my mom that rent was like $400 and she believed me! I spent all my cash from working those long hours just to get this righteous bong. Now I don’t have to worry about my schedule because this bong kicks so much ass that I don’t even want to leave the house – good thing Mom and Dad are picking up the tab!

What's Cookin, Souf Oaklin' Gourmet?

(Click to enlarge.)

Stevie Leiter's Head's Up!

Hi. How are you?

Well, let me just tell you that Stevie is just fabulous!

These past few months have been absolutely glorious!

First, my great friend and boss Tom Stilley got married in such a beautiful wedding ceremony. That Donny is growing up to be quite the looker! And, oh, what a beautiful bride Veronica made. But enough of this mushy stuff, really, I’m getting upset. Oh, I need a spritzer!

So, why are you so happy, Stevie?

Well, skipping the obvious reasons, like it being football season (yummy!) and cooler weather (I love the Winter!), I’ve met someone special with whom I’ve been spending a lot of time. Oh, and I just get all gushy around the holidays! Thanksgiving was great! I love turkey. Can’t wait for some Christmas ham and New Year’s pork.

But we want entertainment news and gossip!

OK, but I’m warning you, you won’t like it:

Rick Sebak is getting fat. There, I said it. I know, I know, he’'s always had a bit of a cute ’lil spare tire, but really, Rick, maybe you should stop eating sausages all across the country and just stick with some Primanti’s at home or something. We all want to hear: I used to have a big gut, but it’s not there anymore.

In other news, Antwan Randell Cunningham is a bona fide hunk. I got some balls for him to catch!

Did anyone see Mr. Rogers on the 61C last week?

Well, that’s really all I have for you right now. Remember to wash your backside. You never know when it’ll be needed! Happy Holidays!

Scientists, Astronomers Eagerly Await Implosion of Pitt Sports Program

A joint group of Astronomers, Physicists, and other assorted scientists recently held a conference on the campus of the University of Pittsburgh to discuss what they believe to be the upcoming complete implosion of Pitt's sports program.

Led by Dr. Stephen Wells of the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Physics and Astronomy and co-chaired by long-time sports analyst and Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writer Ed Bouchette, the conference focused on the larger sports programs within the university’s Department of Athletics.

“We mainly looked at the explosive growth of both the Football and especially Men’s Basketball programs,” explained Dr. Wells. “If you look at this chart that we drafted, you can see that if these programs follow along the same route as most typical red giants, they only have a very short time until they collapse completely, imploding in upon themselves.”

Added Bouchette, “I think that the accelerated growth of [Men’s] Basketball is going to trigger a chain reaction, destroying the hard work of [Football Coach Walt] Harris’s slow, successful rebuilding effort, not to mention completely destroying Pitt’s Big East Champion Swimming and Diving Teams, as well as Wrestling. I’m afraid to even speculate what this could do to the long-standing Big East Champion Dance Team.”

Dr. James Stallworth, the scientist who catalogued the collapse of the Temple University Owls’ Men’s Basketball program in 1988-89 (following the stellar 1987-88 season) was the keynote speaker of the conference. “The Panthers parallel the Owls in several ways. First, we see that Temple’s program seemingly grew beyond its natural boundaries when Coach Chaney acquired Mark Macon in 1987, as with Brandin Knight here at Pitt. Second, we have Coach Chaney taking his team to the NCAA Tournament, getting to the Elite 8 in 1988, then garnering Coach of the Year awards in 1987 and 1988. However, Temple fell hard in 1989, winning only 18 of their 30 games and only getting an NIT berth.”

“Finally, and this is where the Big Question still remains, we have here at Pitt somewhat of an anomaly: The [John and Gertrude] Petersen Events Center. What will the ramifications of such a venue be? Will it enable the Men’s Basketball team to overcome the sudden thrust into greatness – something Temple was not able to do? I just don’t know!”

The main conference findings indicated that Pitt’s sports program is indeed on the verge of collapse. “We’re all eager to watch how this implosion develops,” summarized Wells. “We note that it will most likely take the form of a really bad losing season next year for Men’s Basketball – and I mean losing to E.A. Sports All Stars bad. See, it’s already begun. Did you see that football loss to WVU?”

Big East Looking into Fellatio Allegations

A Heinz Field spectator held an impromptu press conference to announce his disapproval of Big East officiating during the November 30th Pitt/West Virginia collegiate football game.

“Hey ref, get off your knees cause you’re blowing the game,” chief spectator Greg Jones, 23, of Aliquippa declared after a holding penalty cost Pitt an apparent touchdown.

Jones’ comment was directed at Big East Field Judge James Donaldson, who called the aforementioned penalty as well as a roughing-the-passer call against Panther Middle Linebacker Gerald Hayes.

Big East authorities are currently investigating the accusations of fellatio against Donaldson and his crew.

“Historically, authority figures take certain liberties over younger and more vulnerable subjects. One need only remember President Clinton and Monica Lewinksy, or more recently the Catholic Priest scandal. That’s why we are taking these allegations very seriously. We do not condone any lewd or improper acts by any of our referees against any player, team, or physical sporting match,” said Big East Commissioner Michael A. Tranghese.

Jones later consoled his officiating frustrations throughout the rest of the contest with the flask of Jim Beam he smuggled into the stadium. By the end of the 3rd quarter, Jones had reportedly forgotten making the allegations against Donaldson.