Surviving Survivor

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Until three years ago I had never watched an episode of CBS’s Survivor. My roommate was a fanatic and asked if I wanted to join a Survivor fantasy pool. I said yes for a couple reasons. First, it was a good excuse to turn my brain off in the middle of the week and have a beer or two and not stare at text books. Second, I figured I’d man up and see what all the fuss was about.

The pool is still a thing. However, after last week’s episode, I think I’m done.

Survivor is in its 32nd Season and is taking place in Koh Rong, Cambodia. The show generally puts out two seasons per calendar year. The 32nd season premiere saw 8.3 million viewers tune in. I was one of them.

In Survivor tribes enter a ‘remote’ island and square off with one another for a chance to win 1 million dollars. This season sees Survivor revert to a tried and tested formula of three tribes; brains, brawn, and beauty. A lovely lesson to teach viewers – you’re either a model, you’re strong, or you’re smart, but good luck being two of these defining features. Let alone three. I suppose it’s more innocent than their ‘Blood v Water’ concept which sees family members wrestle with the idea of betraying loved ones for a shot at money. But not by much.

Tribes compete in reward challenges and immunity challenges. If a tribe wins a reward challenge they are rewarded. Pretty simple.  Immunity challenges see teams compete in challenges that generally combine some form of physical challenge and puzzle challenge to win an immunity idol. Immunity idols prevent tribes from having to go to the dreaded tribal council. Each episode one tribe must to go to tribal council. It’s the source of the show’s drama. And at each tribal, one member of the tribe must be voted out. This continues until the tribes dissolve into one tribe and eventually 3 cast members are left.

The premise of Survivor is simple. Win. Above all else.

Have an alliance with someone from day one? Blindside them at tribal and live to see another day. It was only your word. You only shook hands with someone and told them you have their back. What’s that worth? Apparently a million dollars.

This season saw Aleica bust her ass off over the first 3 episodes to try and help the tribe. We’re told she spent hours trying to make a fire while everyone else in her tribe laid around and rested. When she knew she was on the outs, she found an immunity idol clue. She thought she was safe until a former professional athlete and a former member of the U.S. army used their speed and strength to wrestle it from her like a couple of 6 year olds on a playground. Fuckin eh man. The lesson we can derive from that? It’s not how hard you work it’s who you know. Who your friends are.

The examples are endless. Morals are compromised again and again in the name of the game. In the name of money.

Last weeks episode sealed the deal for me. The tribes headed into the reward challenge just 5 minutes into the episode. Huh? That’s pretty early. We usually get plotting and planning for a while. Not today.

The reward challenge consisted of going through a small obstacle course, digging under a log in the sand and crawling under it, and digging up three bags of balls in the sand which would be used in a Survivor bowling game.

Koh Rong gets hot. The highest average monthly temperature was 33 degrees Celsius (that’s 91.4 Fahrenheit for you yanks). That’s hot and it’s only the average. I’ve worked labour jobs before where the day is over if the temperature hits 36 degrees Celsius (96.8 degrees Fahrenheit). We weren’t told how hot it was on the day of the challenge, but it was hot.  According to the show the tribes spent well over 45 minutes in the sun that day digging for bags. Three of them collapsed due to heat stroke. Which three?

Caleb – 28 year old army vet. Guy is built like a truck. Absolutely shredded.

Debbie – 49 year old Chemist, who according to the episode, weighs about 98 pounds.

Cydney – 23 year old professional body builder.

What do these three have in common? They don’t have a lot of water kicking around inside them. Those three going down to heat stroke/heat exhaustion was completely foreseeable. And it wasn’t so much the fact the show let them go down that was most disturbing (though it certainly was) it’s how they handled it.

The second Debbie’s teammate called the host over for medical the tone of the show flips. The music cuts out. In comes the string section in their ominous beats. And the show begins to reveals itself wholly for what it is. But first, a commercial.

When we come back the host proudly proclaims, with a smile on his face, “We have three different stories happening”. One of those stories is 49 year old Debbie curled up like a ball getting medical attention. The host graciously returns to Debbie and stands over her and asks for the update from the doctor. It’s all sort of eerie and wrong. Debbie is still what she’s always been, a set piece. Like all survivor contestants she’s been manipulated and put through tests and trials designed by TV producers and Network execs hundreds of miles away from the start. But now, her physical state, the helpless skinny middle aged woman who can’t pick her head off the ground, represents it perfectly. She’s helpless. As a viewer you can’t NOT see it. They throw it in your face. And what does the perfectly groomed, well dressed, host do? He doesn’t help her himself, there’s no real concern going on his end. In fact, he’s borderline excited. What great television this will make.

When Caleb goes down it’s a whole new level of heat stroke. The entire crew has scrambled from the bushes now. They’ve come to the aid of their stranded and deserted subjects. The poor guy can’t keep his eyes open, it looks like he’s in and out of consciousness, and no matter what the medical team try they can’t cool him down. They ran a mainline of Saline solution but he had roasted himself completely. There was no coming back. The music is rising and falling like an epic war movie. And then Cydney goes down. It’s a full blown crisis now.

The host jumps back and forth asking for updates on his set pieces. Cydney recovers. Caleb, as I mentioned, isn’t so lucky. He needed some serious attention and was helicoptered off the island, back to civilization. The last thing the host says to Caleb is, “You’re a warrior dude, glad you were out here”. This might be the most real thing said in the history of reality television. Caleb offered a great episode of suspense and chatter. I’m even writing about this shit. Unfortunately for him, it came at his health.

Now, we cut to Caleb’s team reacting to finding out Caleb is out. The string section which spent most of its time on the lower end of the scales ascends to angelic heights. The music is soaring and so is the last contestant to leave Survivor.

It’s just T.V. Salt, why the fuck does it matter?

It matters because Survivor is just one facet of celebrity culture that we obsesses over today. It matters because people in America are willing to compromise themselves, family members, and any shred of morality for a shot at a million dollars. Survivor is a symptom. The sickness is systemic and it has infiltrated almost every facet of North American culture. Survivor plays itself out in the real world almost everyday.

Don’t believe me? Donald Trump is another symptom. He’s just playing Survivor: become president and profit no matter the cost. Sound familiar?  Just as many people seem to be tuning in to Trump’s version of Survivor as well.

Maybe the time will come when I get into Trump. For now, fuck Survivor. I’m out.

-Salt (@hardnosalt).

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The Real 10 Commandments of Beer League

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Today, Bardown released the ’10 Commandments of Beer League Hockey’. Their 10 commandments had 3:

  1. Honor thy GM Above All Else;
  2. Thou shalt pay they hockey fees on time; and
  3. Thou shalt not bail on game day.

Did you see what they did there? 1,2,10. Holy fuck. I was going to accuse them of having never played beer league hockey, but based on the way they count, they are exactly the type of guys who play beer league hockey.

I’ve played a lot of hockey in my life. In the grand scheme of things I was bad. Major/Junior and then University if I must qualify myself. Beer league is the reason I quit. The following 10 commandments seem to be the 10 commandments every beer league player adheres to. We’ll call our beer league player Barry.

#1 THOU ART A HERO BARRY, AND THOU ART BETTER THAN THIS LEAGUE638b1f68d9ebe9d284a65a25f6dd0651

This is the golden rule that every middle aged man seems to agree to in beer league. Barry can’t wait to tell you who he played Bantam Hockey with, oh and by the way, he’s in the Show now. Barry just missed his chance. Or he got hurt. Or the scouts just couldn’t see how good Barry was. Or. Or. Or. Meanwhile, the biggest obstacle on the ice is the blue line which Barry seems to trip over, again and again. You’re a real life Gordon Bombay, Barry, minus the skill. Sick dangles.

                                  # 2 THIS IS THE GREATEST LEAGUE ON THE PLANET AND BARRY WILL DIE FOR THE 06ab101330a8325f2ca34683c2060a07.jpgSHIP

You know how you can tell it’s beer league and its NOT the NHL? It’s a Thursday night. It’s 11:15 p.m. The only thing in the stands are the empty seats that are full when the local Junior/Uni team plays. And you are just getting on the ice. It’s beer league. Not game 7 of the Stanely Cup finals. Relax.There’s no need to draw blood, bleed, or run the 45 year old man from behind for an opportunity to get the puck out of your end. It’s. just. beer league. Barry.

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#3 BARRY SHALL TREAT OPPONENTS LEGS LIKE TREES AND THINE STICK LIKE AN AXE

See that picture on the left. I swear beer league players like Barry think doing something equivalent to that picture will magically make the puck leave their opponents stick and land on theirs. I don’t know how else to explain why it happens so much. It’s as if they’ve never held a hockey stick before. Settle down Barry, I need to walk to my car after the game.

download (2)#4 BARRY, THINE HOCKEY STICK IS FREE TO FLY

The only thing worse than the hacks is the high sticks. Again, it’s as if Barry’s hands have never held a hockey stick. I swear the average beer league player’s blade spends more time above the crossbar then it does on the ice. Maybe because 75% of them are ready to grate cheese they think it’s okay? I’m not sure. Stick on the ice Barry.

#5 THOU WILL CHIRP BARRY, AND THOU WILL CHIRP POORLY

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There is an art to chirping. It’s perfected over years of being terrible at it and being on the receiving end of some good ones. Giroux is one of the best. Barry, you’re not Giroux. Yelling, “YOU ARE NOT GOOD!” from the bench is embarrassing. To be honest Barry, you’re just letting everyone in the rink know that you, are in fact, not good. Be nice Barry. You’re all in the same boat out there and it’s fine you don’t know the lingo. It evolves. Just today I saw a Junior player tweet that he had made the ‘Ploffs!’ I had never heard that word before in my life (maybe that’s why I went and burnt out in Uni) and I’m not about to start using it.

#6 SICK DANGLES BARRY, NOW CELEY LIKE IT REALLY MEANT SOMETHING

Barry CeleyBarry, you just scored on a 53-year old man who hasn’t put on goalie skates since he was 21. I think his knees have sand in them. You managed to ‘rip the puck’ from the hashmarks low blocker side. Good work Barry. You got one. It’s amazing you guys are all out here trying to play the game. But you’re not Sid, Toews, or Kane, there’s no need to try and celey like you are. Hand up, maybe a yip or two, but fuck Barry, you don’t need to go for a skate around the offensive zone. Your stick is never something you should try to ride. No one is watching Barry, remember that? The bleachers are blue because no one is sitting in them, not because it was blue t-shirt night. Reel it in Barry.

#7 BARRY WILL FIGHT FOR THINE HONOUR

maxresdefaultLook at this picture. Look at Barry. Look how many there are. Barry isn’t afraid to drop the mitts and show Fred who’s boss. This is Barry’s rink and he’ll go ya to make sure you know that. Meanwhile, Barry has to show up to teach grade 11 gym class with a black eye tomorrow. The stitches on the back of his head are because he slipped and fell in a hockey fight last night. Keep the mitts on Barry. Best case scenario you don’t look like an asshole. Worst case scenario you run into someone who used to fight on skates for a living and is tired of you trying to break his ankles and poke his eyeballs out with your stick.

#8 BARRY, THOU SHALL SHIT ALL OVER YOUR GM

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The only guys crazier than the ones running around without a cage on are the GMs. Barry going to show up tonight? Won’t know for sure until we’re 5 minutes into the first. Barry going to pay his league fees? Maybe, certainly not by the deadline. Barry going to remember his jersey? Probably, because it lives in his bag. Barry going to drink all the beer if he shows up, and no matter how many times he tries, miss the garbage can in the middle of the room? Absolutely. Guess who has to deal with all of Barry’s shit? The GM, and he does it willingly, he volunteers for it. Mind boggling.

#9 THINE LOCKER ROOM IS A PLACE TO VENT ABOUT YOUR SHITTY MARRIAGE

download (1)Ladies, if you want to know how your marriage is doing, pull some NSA shit and mic that locker room. I think it’s a preface for beer leagues: your marriage has to be in shambles and you must vent to no end about it. After about 4 beers and a ‘hard fuckin skate eh Barry’ it’s a full blown counseling session. Maybe I’m bias. I was single at the time and just wanted to burn some calories before I hit the hay. I hadn’t yet made the decision to marry someone. Still haven’t. Maybe this is why they’re all so angry on the ice. Either way, keep your marriage at home Barry.

#10 THOU SHALL NOT SHOWER, NO MATTER THE COST

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Barry, it’s just a shower. You can even wear a bathing suite Barry! Or your briefs! It’s fine. Just for the love of god, shower. You don’t air your gear out Barry, guess what? It fucking stinks. It’s rancid. If you want me to go out for a beer with you after, or grab some food, you gotta shower Barry. Even I can’t inhale that smell and try to stuff down Budweiser and chicken wings at Boston Pizza.

Beer league should be great. It’s a place where people who haven’t had the opportunity to play the game can put on some skates and give it a whirl. But, frustrated middle aged men full of testosterone ruin it by trying to be heroes. You’re not a hero Barry. You’re a middle aged man playing hockey at 11:15 at night. And that’s okay.

Salt.

 

The Mortal Lock

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The Mortal Lock. And so it begins. Fuck me.

Starting this Sunday, March 13th, the team at HardNoSports will begin the tradition of picking individual ‘Mortal Lock’ picks of the week. This means Squire, Gritty, and myself will be locked into, and writing about, picking one game each week. If we are wrong there will be consequences. The Rules are pretty simple:

  1. By Sunday night every week Squire, Gritty, and myself must have declared our Mortal Locks for the week;
  2. By Sunday night, by committee, the @HardNo team must select a punishment which must be carried out and blogged about by each member in the event they are wrong; and
  3. Before each Mortal Lock game takes place we must write about why we chose that game and that team.

That’s it. Seems simple. Seems fair. It won’t be. I promise.

First, Gritty is a sports guru. He lives for this stuff. The guy has spread sheets of players in the CFL (the ‘Canadian Football League’) who played in the NFL. Why? So when Squire tees off about the CFL being a shit league he can pull out a spread sheet and politely ask Squire to choke on it.

Squire is a seasoned basketball and football fanatic. He calls out offensive formations in pubs, by himself, repeatedly. He traveled across state lines to attend March Madness last year.

Me? I just played sports. And not very well if we’re being honest. Lord knows I can’t pick em’ either. For example, this week I took a stab at writing about the Caps and Kings game.I predicted the Caps would win. By the end of the first period they were losing 3-0 and had a total of 6 shots on net. They lost.

Squire has been kind enough to tell me if the Caps and Kings game had been my Mortal Lock I would have been attending a CrossFit class this weekend. Next, I would have been writing about attending a CrossFit class this weekend. Wrong, on so many levels. Which, because I pick sports like the Oilers select draft picks, I will end up doing and writing about. Thus the ‘Fuck me’ at the beginning.

If you have any cruel events or ideas I can put Squire through, in the event he’s wrong, please feel free to share them. There can be no mercy in such dark times. And the internet can be a merciless place.

-Salt.

 

 

Question of the day: does anybody like Bubba Watson?

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Does anybody actually like Bubba Watson?

Seriously, outside of his family and perhaps including them too, does anybody actually like Bubba? Now that the charm, of his southern drawl and funny name, has worn off and people have seen the real Bubba, I am pretty confident the answer is no. Why? Here’s a reminder.

How Bubba treats his caddy
http://www.videobash.com/embed/NjkzNDcz

How Bubba treats the fans

And my favorite, what his peers think of him.

In an ESPN poll of tour players he managed to have nearly a quarter of the players choose him, for the player they would be least likely to help if they saw them in a fight in a parking lot.

So once again I ask who likes Bubba Watson? If somehow on earth you do, I would like to know how and why?

The. Whole. 30.

Miss Vickies Look at that beautiful incarnation. I can taste the chips just by looking at them. I can feel the way they would crunch so loud I could annoy people trying to watch T.V. I miss it. The salt. The vinegar.  All of it.

‘But Salt, they’re just chips. What the fuck are you on about? Go buy some and shut up.’

I would love to reader. I really, really would. Unfortunately I cannot because I’m an idiot.

A word to the wise. If you have a roommate, or a friend (although no true friend would ever suggest such a sick form of torture), or you’re one of those guys who does whatever his girlfriend says, if they suggest doing the ‘Whole 30’, don’t. No matter the cost. Blowjobs aren’t worth 30 days of suffering.

As we now know, Squire is just getting started in the land of the corporate fat-cat. Over the last couple of years he has done his best to embrace the word ‘fat’. I think it’s fair to say the only thing that has grown faster than his bank account is his beer gut. This beer gut has apparently become a burden we both must carry. Why? Because I am a good friend.

When Squire suggested we do the ‘Whole 30’ so we could get in shape I thought ‘Good on Squire, he’s recognized a problem and is doing something about it’. I thought it would be nice to do it with him. To support him. To be a good friend. It’s only 30 days it can’t be that hard. Wrong. Very Wrong.

The ‘Whole 30’ brands itself as a program of ‘tough love’. That’s like calling Donald Trump ‘honest’. Here are the rules for the Whole 30:

  1. Do not consume added sugar of any kind, real or artificial…..Go ahead. Think about what that excludes.
  2. Do not consume alcohol in any form, not even for cooking…..Sober March Madness is not best March Madness.
  3. Do not eat grains…..quinoa? Nope.
  4. Do not eat legumes…..I’m 28, I had no idea what legumes were. I thought beans would be a life saver throughout this thing. Nope.
  5. Do not eat dairy….bye bye yogurt.
  6. Do not consume carrageenan, MSG or sulfites……this one is obvious and pretty easy.
  7. Do not try re-created baked goods, junk foods, or treats with “approved” ingredients…..good bye Miss Vickies, you wonderful, magnificent delicious chip.
  8. You are not allowed to step on the scale or take any body measurements for the duration of the program……. I did. I’m about 5’8 and before this I was in pretty decent shape. Far from anything anyone could wash clothes on but I worked out 5 times week. Why? So I could eat shit like Miss Vickies and have some Jack Daniels and still look decent. I lost 5 pounds in 8 days.

At this point, I don’t know what day we’re on. It doesn’t matter anymore. There is no light at the end of the tunnel. Only darkness.

I eat eggs, steak, salad, and homemade burgers. Smoothies consist of bananas, almonds, frozen fruit, ice and almond milk. The worst part is the cravings. You go through a phase where you can taste things. I was walking around on a Tuesday and I could swear I had a rum and coke in my mouth. It was kind of amazing but also awful. I’m all for being in shape. I’m all for eating healthy. But good fucking god. There’s no reason to go from learning how to walk  one day to lining up against Von Miller in the next. It’s violent, bloody torture.

And I can’t quit. I would never hear the end of it from Squire. Which would be absolutely worse than however many days are left.

So here’s to you Squire and your ever shrinking belly. I hope it’s worth all this. You fuck.

Love Salt.

The Gambling Account.

So Salt and I opened our first official gambling account today. Sure we have placed plenty of bets in our lives, who doesn’t like to watch a game with a little action on it, but we have never had the ability to just go and place a bet, on a moments whim. The bets have always just been among friends, or I have had to get a friends to place the action for me. No longer will there be any barriers to placing bets, as we now have an account at an undisclosed location. Now when I can’t sleep on a random weeknight I can place a bet on a random West Coast Conference basketball game and sweat out the under all night (Who Am I kidding, always bet the over in the WCC, that league doesn’t know defence). #Blessed

Also he doesn’t realize it yet, but it is only a matter of time until Salt is placing bets on random hockey games in the  Belarus Extraliga, while watching the games on some shitty internet stream, and I will take the under on 2 weeks before he is betting on the KHL, guy loves himself some commy hockey.

Rules of the Account

So there are a few rules to the account…

  1. We have started with $100 (yes we are ballin like that)
  2. We can each place any bets under $5 up to a maximum  of $20 total in a day that we want, without any rules or permission from the other.
  3. To place a bet over $5, or to bet over $20 for any given day we need to have the permission of the other
  4. No personal savings may be used to replenish the account.
  5. So if (let’s be real, when) our account goes to zero we will have to come up with way to replenish the account, and it can’t be from our personal savings, regular income or lines of credit. This means we will have to find odd jobs, or things to sell (i.e. collecting pop cans). On an unrelated note anybody need a bartender for an event? Asking for a friend
  6. No money can be taken out of the account for a year, at the end of the year we will decide new rules for the account

The other thing about the start of this account, is it almost perfect coincides with the start of March Madness. There is nothing I love more than March Madness and I can almost guarantee you I will be begging Salt to let me increase my limit so I can hit the late games on the first day. There is also a pretty good chance I am going to have to take a vacation from my real job after the first weekend so I can scrounge up enough money to play the second weekend.

So if you have any hot tips please hit us up on twitter @HardNoSalt and @HardNoSquire! We love hot tips,and are almost guaranteed to place some action on any tips we get! #GetThatPaper

EDIT: I just found out that you can bet on esports. There is no chance that Salt isn’t betting on esports by the end of this week. Our TV is going to be constantly streaming warcraft tournaments or some shit like that FML. Dweebs playing games is not a sport nor entertainment, and even as someone who advocates being able to bet on almost anything I am against this. Again FUCK MY LIFE and FUCK ESPORTS TOO

Who we are…

Squire@HardNoSquire

You can call me Squire. I am 26 years and stuck between two worlds. From 9-5 I exist in the grown up corporate world. However, I can’t quite seem to let go of the care free and responsibility free life of an early 2o’s male that I used to know. Sports are my outlet and escape from this conflict. I also love making a buck anyway I can, so am always chasing my next dollar. Oh and did I mention I have an addictive personality and just opened a sports betting account…

I live with Salt, and am technically his landlord, hence the name Squire. Salt is one my best friends and we decided to start this blog to entertain ourselves, if no one else. It will have our thoughts on sports, current events and tidbits from our daily lives.

mortonsaltumbrellagirl@HardNoSalt

After many years of higher education Salt is currently trying to find a real ‘grown up’ job. This is stressing him out.  He currently watches movies, watches sports, plays video games, lifts heavy things and puts them back down, and applies for jobs. Oh, and he studies. He really doesn’t know how good he has it.

Salt gets his name because of his tendency to look for the negative in everything. Despite this, he can still be one of the most fun humans I know. This conflict between negativity and desire for fun leads to an endless river of  sarcasm flowing from Salt’s mouth.  If there is going to be any artistic side to this blog, it will definitely be coming from Salt (he moonlights as a rockstar, a film critic, and music critic…..it never stops) and you can also count on him for a few conspiracy theories…

Krang@hardnogritty1

We asked Gritty to join us on this fun little project of ours since he is the biggest sports fanatic we know. He also happens to be one of the smartest guys we know. Lord knows we could use some brains around here.

Gritty is also, honestly the nicest guy I have ever met and you have to wonder what he is doing around a place like HardNoSports. He will probably be mortified by 95% of the posts we make. Gritty will provide the actual sports opinions and analysis for HardNo, while claiming the league they try and call football, the CFL, is great.

That’s it. That is our team and this is the beginning of HardNoSports. At this point you know as much about the next post as we do……not a thing.