Hi everyone! Been a few days since I checked in with you, but I have every intention of keeping up with my increased rate of writing here. It’s helping me, and I hope it gives you guys just a little distraction too. Let’s talk about some sports and stuff.
I don’t care about Jimmy Haslam’s money. If it takes $20 million to get Trent Williams for a year to help solidify the Browns, it bothers me not even a little bit. We can talk in the abstract about whether it’s a smart use of funds, but ultimately, it’s just a hypothetical conversation because it’s a short-term expenditure with no long-term implications to the Browns’ roster flexibility. Now, if you have to trade draft picks for the right to spend Jimmy Haslam’s money, I’m far less interested.
I’m already impressed with what Andrew Berry has done to address the offensive line by shoring up right tackle with Conklin. The Browns need to do something at left tackle, but Trent Williams can’t be the only option to fix the issue. He’s maybe one of the top three or four options, but that’s just it. The bottom line is that if I’m Washington, I’m not feeling all that confident about my leverage. If I’m Andrew Berry and the Browns, I’m sitting and waiting and playing chicken.
It would be nice to add Trent Williams. I don’t care what he costs in terms of contract dollars. However, I’m sitting tight and waiting. If it happens, great. If it doesn’t, oh well.
I’m a huge Death Cab for Cutie fan from way back in the day, as it’s been called. I saw them at the Middle East in Cambridge Massachusetts for the first time in the early 2000s when they were touring for an album called We Have the Facts and We’re Voting Yes. They were a mopey indie rock band that played heartbreaking songs at a very slow pace. As with anything in life, much has changed since those days for them. Lead singer Ben Gibbard got older, healthier, became an ultra-marathon runner, continued to write great songs and now they have a very big, energetic live show. He bounces around the stage through their songs in a way that feels like I turned on Audible’s 1.5x listening option. They’re still great, but it’s decidedly different than it was when we were all 20-somethings hanging out in that smokey basement club in Cambridge Mass. Except, we’re still the same people.
Ben Gibbard is proving just how much he is the same guy with his home acoustic music series during the quarantine. He’s playing stripped-down versions of songs from all across the band’s catalog. He’s even including some Postal Service and side-project material in the mix. In this setting – as opposed to the much glitzier live shows with his full band of late – he’s proving that the indie rocker is still in there. None of this is a criticism, by the way. We all get older and change. I don’t begrudge him any of his success or the changes they’ve made to their art as they’ve traversed over 20 years of a music career.
With that, I need to share his set of covers from this past Sunday night. If Gibbard has shined playing his own music in this setting, he caught on fire during his set of covers. His cover of Elliott Smith’s Waltz #2 would have been enough all on its own, but he finished the set with Do You Realize? by the Flaming Lips. I hope you enjoy it half as much as I did.
Our friend okPANTS joined the podcast this weekend and it was great to catch up. We talked about lots of different things, including a chat about some of the best immature adult male comedies of all time. I think it’s a worthy listen for sure.
Also, I want to highlight the new products that okPANTS just released in his store. He’s an independent graphic design artist whose business has been impacted in a major way by the situation we’re dealing with right now. He’s not the kind of person to ask for a handout, so he’s put out some products with his excellent artwork on them. Pants is always quick to say “YES!” whenever we ask him to do a podcast. He’s given us lots of content over the years. If you like his art and want to support a great Cleveland small business owner, this is a great way to do it.