Dear Gawker,

This must be hard. Your very existence, ironically, has just been threatened by a story you posted on your site. This one is to be exact (it’s SFW now): Usually, you post these audacious things and enjoy a lot of click traffic and some tweets from the inner circle of the Internet (you know, the one that seems to get to decide what is cool and what is not cool in the blogosphere). But not this time.

This time, you went too far. Regardless of Hulk Hogan knowing or not knowing if he was being filmed, or the reason for him suing you not being this tape but another, I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that any reasonable human being can agree that you crossed a line here in your pursuit of viral content and constant relevance.

Now, we do agree on one thing, and that is the enormity of the $140 million settlement awarded to Hogan by the jury. Seemingly on the heels of Erin Andrews’s $55 million victory in another privacy invasion case, we have learned that white people’s privacy is worth more than black lives, but I digress.

So, you’re going to appeal, and you are confident that this large amount will be reduced drastically, or perhaps entirely, if the appeals court buys the arguments made in Nick Denton’s response here. Even so, a verdict any larger than $50 million would certainly not be ideal, to put it in the lightest of terms. For example, in 2014, you guys made $6.7 million in profit against $45 million in revenue. At least Denton sold a minority stake to semi-prepare for this outcome, but it doesn’t seem like it would come anywhere close to putting a dent in that 140mil, evidenced when he said, “We don’t keep $100 million in the bank, no.”

Regardless of the final verdict, right now you have to pay a bond of $50 million under Florida state law when appealing the case. That’s a good amount of money, and it might clean out your rainy day fund. (Are we wrong? Tweet us if so!) Perhaps you even already paid this $50 million, but in any case, the team at PortaBloggy has a solution for you. It might take some pride swallowing, but please just hear us out.

You guys should totally just crowd fund this. Like, as in, make a Kickstarter right this second, and just see what the hell happens. You have nothing to lose and only money to save if this works out. Will it be embarrassing that you have no other options? Probably. But you know what is more embarrassing? Shutting down because you published (parts of) a sex tape.

Maybe you’re a tad skeptical, but this idea works for a few reasons. 1. Some people are actually taking your side, and would you believe it, they actually like having you guys around! Give them a chance to show you how much they care by giving them this contributing opportunity (Maybe hire them after as freelancers also?) 2. This (sort of!) follows Kickstarter’s rules for a project, that a. projects create something to share will others (you continue to exist and share content), b. projects must be honest and clearly presented (never been a problem for you guys), and c. projects can’t fund-raise for charity, offer financial incentives or involve prohibited items (depending on how you view yourselves at this point, the charity thing could be a slight issue, but I think you can argue your way through that one). And finally, 3. You can’t pay this money and still exist in your current state. Just be honest with us.

So please guys, save money and save yourselves, and crowdfund the Hogan verdict.


The PortaBloggy Staff

Bracketeering – Round 1

Bracket fever is in full swing across the country, otherwise known by our bosses as the least productive work week of the year.

Here at PortaBloggy, our “Bracketeering” (TradeMark not yet pending) doesn’t just stop at the NCAA Tournament. Our creative minds theorized what it would be like if colleges with active NBA players had these current players represent their respective schools in a mega NCAA/NBA joint bracket.

Think of it this way: The University of Kentucky has 20 active players in the NBA. This accounts for the most players produced by any school, so we gave them the #1 seed. On the flip side, Wake Forest only has 6 active players in the league, so we tagged them with the #16 seed.

Our selection committee (party of one) assembled the best possible 5-man lineup using these available players. All statistics were provided to us by our good friends over at Basketball Reference*.

Follow? No? Whatever. Just share this on Twitter and hopefully a friend can help you out.

*we’re technically not friends yet, but that’s neither here nor there

Without further ado, on to…

. . .

Round 1

1. Kentucky – PG: John Wall, SG: Eric Bledsoe, F: Anthony Davis, PF: Karl Anthony Towns, C: DeMarcus Cousins
16. Wake Forest – PG: Chris Paul, SG: Jeff Teague, SF: James Johnson, PF: Al-Farouq Aminu, C: Tim Duncan

Kentucky – True to Kentucky fashion, the Wildcats kick things off as our #1 seed and tournament favorites. Top to bottom, this team is incredibly athletic, balanced, and star-studded, just like Calipari drew up. Players like Rajon Rondo, Julius Randle, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and a dozen others couldn’t make the cut, showing how deep Kentucky’s presence in the NBA truly is.

The backcourt of John Wall, currently 3rd in the league in assists, and Bledsoe, averaging 20.4 PPG this year, would be a sufficient duo to take down most teams in this bracket on their own. Incredibly, they are joined by future MVP Anthony Davis, likely Rookie of the Year Karl Anthony Towns, and anchored by DeMarcus “Boogie” Cousins. If you can find a flaw with this team, you can have my job.

Wake Forest – The Demon Deacons feature arguably the greatest power forward of all time in Tim Duncan, the Big Fundamental. Chris Paul, who has consistently averaged around 19 points and 10 assists per game during his tenure with the Clippers, is a future Hall of Famer himself. Jeff Teague has blossomed into an All Star guard in Atlanta, but Johnson and Aminu remain uninspiring. Sorry fans, you won’t be seeing a 16 over 1 upset this year. Duncan’s age, paired with CP3’s inability to win on a big stage [ducks for cover], leaves Wake Forest short of moving on.

Brandon’s Pick – Kentucky

. . .

8. Syracuse – PG: Michael Carter-Williams, SG: Dion Waiters, SF: Wesley Johnson, PF: Carmelo Anthony, C: Fab Melo
9. Texas – PG: D.J. Augustin, SG: Avery Bradley, SF: Kevin Durant, PF: LaMarcus Aldridge, C: Tristan Thompson

Lookout! It’s the battle of fanhoods for PortaBloggy contributors Kevin Hunker (Syracuse) and Brian Graney (Texas). Let’s see which writer gets bragging rights for the next year. Or, at least, until their first round of golf.

Syracuse – Syracuse is loaded with high-volume shot takers in Carmelo, Waiters, and MCW, but plagued by lackluster defense. Combined, the three scorers are shooting near 42% per game. It’s an eerily similar scouting report to Kevin Hunker’s own basketball skill set nonetheless. Wesley Johnson is a lanky wing who can play solid defense, but doesn’t have the height to effectively contain Durant (who can?). Poor Fab Melo gets his one shot to play next to the real Melo, but will struggle getting rebounds opposite Thompson.

Texas – A former MVP and a perennial top-10 MVP candidate, Kevin Durant and LaMarcus Aldridge respectively, are virtually unstoppable together. Durant’s elite versatility and Aldridge’s prowess in the paint is a sight we get to see once a year at the All Star Game.

Avery Bradley has settled in nicely as an above-average defender. Tristan Thompson, an offensive rebound juggernaut, is averaging 3.4 ORB’s per game throughout his career. His proficiency around the rim can keep alive any rare miss by either Durant or Aldridge. Augustin, nothing more than a replacement level player at this point in his career, appears to be this teams weak point. It will be tough sledding for Syracuse in guarding Texas’s bigs up front, so I’ll chalk this up as a win for Brian Graney.

Brandon’s Pick – Texas

. . .

5. UCLA – PG: Russell Westbrook, SG: Jrue Holiday, SF: Arron Afflalo, PF: Trevor Ariza, C: Kevin Love
12. Georgia Tech – PG: Jarrett Jack, SG: Iman Shumpert, SF: Thaddeus Young, PF: Chris Bosh, C: Derrick Favors

UCLA – What an outstanding backcourt. Next to Steph Curry tha god, Russell Westbrook is undoubtedly the best point guard in the game. A truly elite playmaker, he may even have supplanted Kevin Durant as the best player on his team [ducks for cover]. Paired alongside the versatile playmaker in Jrue Holiday, UCLA will be able to feed Kevin Love down low or around the three point line with ease. Add in underrated wings in Afflalo and Ariza, the scoring should never be in drought. Defense, however, may be the knock against this team.

Georgia Tech – A talented frontcourt in Young, Bosh and Favors won’t be enough to offset the deficiencies in the backcourt. Jack is a serviceable veteran and is capable enough to share the rock with the bigs up front. Shumpert, with all of his glorious hair, rap songs, and Instagram posts, has settled into the role of a “Three and D” shooting guard. Barring any unforeseen circumstances, the frontcourt won’t be able to carry this team to a win over UCLA.

Brandon’s Pick – UCLA

. . .

4. North Carolina – PG: Ty Lawson, SG: Danny Green, SF: Vince Carter, PF: Harrison Barnes, C: Tyler Hansbrough
13. LSU – PG: Marcus Thornton, SG: Garrett Temple. SF: Anthony Randolph, PF: Brandon Bass, C: Glen Davis

North Carolina – The Tar Heels boast a talented, balanced lineup. Vince Carter may be riding into the sunset, but he can still be an efficient player and veteran presence for this young squad. Harrison Barnes is finally coming into his own on the Golden State Warriors, and is certainly due for a sizable payday this summer.

On offense, the backcourt of Lawson and Green can be quite competent. Lawson, an undersized point guard, is a dynamic scorer and passer when healthy and not in jail. Danny Green is as good as they come at knocking down threes.

On defense, Lawson probably should take a defensive driving course for his abundant DUI arrests…and for allowing opposing point guards to drive to the hoop. Similarly, Green is a known liability against quick, athletic guards, which puts UNC at a bit of a disadvantage on the boards.

LSU – Aside from Brandon Bass and Marcus Thornton, no other player on this roster is a quality NBA starter. Anthony Randolph never panned out despite his potential, and Garret Temple can kick rocks. Big Baby can take all the charges he wants, but at the end of the day, he’s still Big Baby.

As long as Lawson can avoid getting pulled over on his way to the game, UNC will have no problem handling this sub-par LSU team.

Brandons Pick – North Carolina

. . .

6. Arizona – PG: Jason Terry, SG: Andre Iguodala, SF: Derrick Williams, PF: Aaron Gordon, C: Jordan Hill
11. University of Connecticut – PG: Shabazz Napier, SG:Kemba Walker, SF: Rudy Gay, PF: Charlie Villanueva, C: Andre Drummond

Arizona – The trio of Williams, Gordon, and Hill up front feature some of the best raw, athletic talent. You may or may not have seen Aaron Gordon sit on air during the dunk contest, but now combine that with defensive guru and reigning Finals MVP Andre Iguodala, and you have an Arizona team that can be aggressive with its strength and balance. Oh, and let’s not forget Jason “The Jet” Terry. The maker of many clutch baskets in his heyday. How can you bet against The Jet?

UConn – …and UConn is exactly why you can safely bet against The Jet. As the old adage goes, the three things you can count on in life: 1) death, 2) taxes, and 3)never bet against UConn in a tournament. Sure, Jeremy Lamb is a more talented player than Shabazz Napier. But Shabazz has that UConn magic. When in doubt kids, don’t ever doubt the UConn magic.

Brandon’s Pick – UConn

. . .

3. Duke – PG: Kyrie Irving, SG: JJ Redick, SF: Luol Deng, PF: Jabari Parker, C: Jahlil Okafor
14. Michigan – PG: Trey Burke, SG: Tim Hardaway, Jr. SF: Jamal Crawford, PF: Glen Robinson, C: Mitch McGary

Duke – You may hate Coach K, Laettner, the Cameron Crazies, and everything Dook, but you can’t deny their consistency year after year. The backcourt of Kyrie and Redick is a highly effective pairing. JJ is shooting an insane 48% from beyond the arc this year, and Irving has an effective field goal percentage at over 50%.

Deng, while getting up in age, has been a bulldog on defense throughout this career. Rounding this team off with talented young stars in Parker and Okafor, this Duke squad should have great ball movement and chemistry, and will find a way to win games.

Michigan – This version of the Fab Five doesn’t compare to the original of the 90’s. Former 6th man of the year and Mr. Crossover, Jamal Crawford is the only veteran on this team. The other four all played together in the NCAA championship game against Louisville in 2013. With none of those four standing out as anything more than young bloods learning the game, the Wolverines won’t have the experience to outlast the Blue Devils. ESPN won’t be making a 30 for 30 on this one, folks.

Brandon’s Pick – Duke

. . .

7. Florida – PG: Nick Calathes, SG: Bradley Beal, SF: Chandler Parsons, PF: Al Horford, C: Joakim Noah

10. Washington – PG: Isaiah Thomas, SG: Nate Robinson, SF:Terrence Ross, PF: Quincy Pondexter, C: Spencer Hawes

Florida – Featuring Billy Donovan era NCAA champions in Horford and Noah, it would be hard for opposing big men to clean up the glass against these two. Noah, who plays with passion and loves to get under opposing team’s skin, may be the scrappiest center in the game.

Parsons, shooting 42% from the 3 this year and 49% overall, and Bradley Beal, whose numbers are increasing all around year after year, form a solid core for this Gators team. As for Nick Calathes? Kicking rocks.

Washington – Breakout player and first-time All Star Isaiah Thomas is taking the league by storm. The pint-sized point guard is 10th in scoring this year, and quietly leading the Celtics on a charge into the postseason. Nate Robinson may be bouncing around the league, but there’s nothing more fun than watching Krypto-Nate bounce to the rim. He even did it wearing Shaq’s elephant sized shoes!

Terrence Ross is a complementary piece to this team, just like his complementary role to Lowry and DeRozan in Toronto. However, Pondexter can kick rocks and Hawes is terribly overrated and overpaid, whose numbers and minutes are diminishing each season.
Bracketeering at PortaBloggy isn’t for the faint of heart.

While Florida is the superior team, anything can happen in March (Hi FGCU). The diminutive duo of Isaiah and Nate will blow up for alternating 15-point scoring runs, and the Huskies pull out the upset in OT. If that’s too much for you to handle, you too can kick rocks with Calathes and Temple.

Brandon’s Pick – Washington

. . .

2. Kansas – PG: Mario Chalmers, SG: Andrew Wiggins, SF: Paul Pierce, PF: Marcus Morris, C: Markieff Morris
15. USC – PG: O.J. Mayo, SG: Nick Young, SF: DeMar DeRozan, PF: Taj Gibson, C: Nikola Vucevic

Kansas – Led by The Truth, the Jayhawks are a well balanced squad. Pierce may be old, but he’s adjusted to the game in his elder age rather nicely. Chalmers, love him or hate him, is a solid distributor and has plenty of big game experience from his time with the Heat.

Former top overall pick Andrew Wiggins would benefit with real life experience playing under Pierce’s wing, rather than the abyss that exists in Minnesota in regards to developing young stars. Wiggins is an effective scorer still learning the game, but has the talent to contribute at a high level today. Hopefully they don’t ship him up to Boston when he’s ready to win a ring…

The Morris twins, headcases they may be, have that from the womb to the hoop chemistry. Both big bodies and above average rebounders, they will keep Kansas competitive in every game.

USC – Let’s go from the bigs down for this one… Vucevic is an underappreciated player on a rebuilding Orlando team. A big body with a deft touch, many teams would be more than happy to have Vucevic anchoring the paint. Taj Gibson, more of a 6th man than a starter, has the length and experience to contribute nicely.

DeMar DeRozan has improved tremendously over the course of his career, and earned a well-deserved All Star berth this season. He reminds me of a young Kobe-lite. As for Swaggy P and OJ Mayo…oh boy. Unfortunately for USC, they’ll end up forfeiting this game as the two will be ejected for fighting (each other) in the first half. Swaggy P get’s KO’d in case you were wondering.

Brandon’s Pick – Kansas

And that about wraps up Round 1 coverage. Round 2 featuring the Elite 8, Final 4, and the Championship game is coming your way later on.

Haunted Dreams 2016

Monday, 3:45 am.

I gulp for air as I break out of the nightmare, the same one for the third straight night.

I’m sweating, and breathing heavily. The cat is terrified, staring at me at the end of the bed with its head cocked to the right. “It’s ok buddy,” I say, gesturing for him to join me. He obliges, and places himself in my lap. I reach for the water on my nightstand, still lost in thought, and stare at my Ikea carpet, recollecting the dream once more.

I’m on the New York City Subway. It’s the 2 train, downtown, towards Brooklyn. I know this because of the signs, yes, but also because the stops are being repeated by the conductor rapidly, without hesitation, and while the train is motion.

We stop, but not at a station. I turn to the man to my right to bemoan yet another “train traffic” hassle, but just then the doors open, and from somewhere below the door level, men in suits climb aboard. Except they’re not quite men. They have the heads of rats.

I freak out. I feel the sudden need to get off the train. I have to. But the men keep coming. And coming. And coming. They’re filling the car rapidly. They’ve taken all the seats and are now clogging the standing areas, grabbing hold of the poles. I suddenly am struggling to breathe. I try to push my way past them, and this act of resistance is met by every single set of beady eyes turning to me. I feel all of them. They’re gnawing at me from every angle. I push and I push and I push. But I can’t get off. More of them are pouring in. I’m getting squished into nothing. The lights dimming as the men continue to stare. I’m going to pass out. My head and neck are pushed from the left and I face the rat closest to me on the right. He says something.

“Good night Donald.”

Now I can’t fall back asleep, so I might as well get the day started.

I turn the shower on, and the water hits the basin with force. I undress and jump into the warm water, hoping to calm down, but I can’t. My mind turns to the dream.

I used to take the 2 train to work in lower Manhattan, but haven’t taken it in quite some time. It’s a popular express train line that serves three boroughs: The Bronx, Manhattan, and Brooklyn. I’m not sure why this dream happens on this subway, but perhaps since it’s the one I am most familiar with, it is the one my subconscious has chosen. I have no idea what to make of the men, dressed in suits, with rat faces for heads. Why are there so many of them? Why are they flooding onto the subway without ebb? Why did one call me Donald? That’s not even my name!

I’m washing my hair when I hear the voice. It’s so low, so faint, that I can’t make out the words, but it does seem to be repeating the same two words over and over. It continues throughout my shower, subsiding only when I shut down the water.

“What the hell is going on?” I mutter, grabbing my towel. I dry myself, and look in the mirror. In it is a black mass that quickly dissipates when I notice it. I jump and knock my head on the wall. I’m dizzy, and I stumble with my eyes closed when I see something in the black of my eyelids. Senator Ted Cruz.

Tuesday, 8am.

I wake from a restful sleep, one spared from the horror of the dream, and set my alarm for a 20 minute snooze. Hey, after the past few nights, I’ve earned it.

I relax under my covers, and fall into that not-quite-awake-but-not-quite-asleep phase that often follows the press of the snooze button. Images of Ted start to flash; he’s at the podium, then on a different stage with a microphone in hand, then taking pictures with supporters holding signs in a large auditorium.

I pop out of bed, thoroughly discomforted by the images in my head. I grab my phone, and call out of work. Something is happening here, and I need to investigate.

I call New York’s top rated demonologist, and he tells me he can do 2pm. Perfect.

I spend the morning doing more research, and it turns out that there have been similar cases across the nation, of people seeing presidential candidates in their dreams, and even hearing words being said aloud in their heads.

Lunch time approaches, and I head out for some food. At the corner of my block, two construction workers are having a lively discussion. They’re shouting expletives in front of each other’s names. One of them is named Ted.

I return to my building after lunch, and kill some time watching CNN. Ted Cruz is on the rise in many states, passing Marco Rubio and threatening Donald Trump.

The demonologist arrives.

Upon entering my apartment, his body language shifts from greeting to suspicion. “When did this start happening did you say?” He asks. “Well, the first dream was Friday night. It happened again Saturday night. Then it happened AGAIN Sunday night. I didn’t have it last night, but I’ve been seeing his face and hearing things while I’m awake.”

He nods in comprehension as he walks my apartment. Living room, kitchen, bathroom, bedroom. He joins me again in the foyer and says, “Look man, I’m not sure what’s going on here, but I’m feeling a presence in this apartment. It’s not serious yet, but it could get there. If you have the dream again, give me a call, ok?” “Ok,” I answer him skeptically, and he bids me goodbye while pulling out his phone to shoot off a text. I watch him walk down the hallway of my floor and down the stairway, with an air of familiarity. Had he been here before?

I’m on the train. The conductor repeats the stops. The train comes to a halt. The men are coming in. They have rats heads. They don’t stop. They are staring at me. They are laughing at me. Why are they laughing? “Why are you laughing?” I ask. They keep laughing. Louder. Louder. Louder. The train gets smaller. Smaller. Smaller. I’m going to pass out again. I’m not going to make it off this train.

Wednesday, 5:06am.


I’m awake, but I don’t feel alone. I realize that the cat isn’t in my bed.

I sit up to call him, and that’s when I see it.

“It” is a black mass in the shape of a man at the edge of my bed. It’s saying something over and over. “Trust me.” “Trust me.” “Trust me.”

I’m horrified. I back into the corner of the wall my bed rests against. I gather my courage to ask the figure something.

“Wh — wh — what do you want from me???”

The muttering stops. The figure leans closer to me.

It speaks clearly now as it says, “Your vote.”

I jump out of bed and the figure disappears simultaneously. I grab my phone and call the demonologist. I expect to be waking him, but he answers on the first ring. Was he waiting for my call?

I’m in shock and can barely speak. I stutter, “H — he — hey. Uhh, I — I had the dream again — and — uh — um — he — was — in m — my — my room.” He tells me to wait outside of the building. He’s on his way.

15 minutes later, we shake hands and we walk into my building and subsequently into my apartment.

He stiffens up as we enter, severely this time, and takes a deep breath. He withdraws his phone from his coat pocket and places it to his ear. He doesn’t greet the recipient of the phone call, just gives him or her the address to my apartment.

He turns to me. “Do you have somewhere you can stay for the day?”

The knock on the door is surprising at this hour, but not unwelcome. The man declares confidently, “Come in.”

The assistant enters the large bedroom and addresses the man in an exasperated voice. “There’s another, Mr. Trump. We need you to get down there ASAP.”

The candles are lit and the living room is crowded with his staff. Trump looks around the apartment. “Who could live like this?” He asks rhetorically. The demonologist gets his attention. “We’re ready sir.” Trump sighs, and pulls a folded piece of paper from his back pocket.

“Ok, let’s make this quick,” he says into the air. He then turns his attention to the paper, and begins to read.

“Ted, I know you’re here Ted. Come out now Ted. I found you, ok, I found you because I have the best people and the best demonologist in New York, ok. What did you think was going to happen, Ted? Did you think you could just set up shop in my city and remain hidden? No way Ted, ok. I could maybe expect this carelessness from Baby Rubio, but from you? Frankly I’m disappointed.”

Trump’s arms, which had been wildly gesticulating, fall to his sides, and he looks to his team. “Ok everyone, time to chant.”








The last chant is interrupted by a high pitched, rat-like squeak. A black mass comes from the bedroom and into the center of the circle, where the candles are, and materializes into Ted Cruz.

Trump is elated. He has found the soul piece Ted had sent to New York. Trump addresses the figure in Trump baby speak. “Ha! I got you Ted, just like I told you I would.” The business man is handed the hat, a Make America Great Again hat, and places it on the ghostly representation of Cruz. The rodent-esque screech returns, loudly, and the figure vanishes into thin air.

Trump smiles widely.

“That was fun.”

I hang up with demonologist. He tells me the apartment is safe now, and I can return whenever I’d like. I thank my friend for her hospitality, and head to Starbucks for the beverage with the highest caffeine content they have.

I order my latte, with 6 shots of espresso, and sneak a look at the barista’s name.

It’s Ted.


$#*! Tech: 2009 MacBook Pro

Editor’s Note: Complete $#*! is a new section we are launching today that will focus on topics  we find to be $#*!, or want to find out if they are $#*!. Here is the first post, regarding an old MacBook. -PJS

Backsliding is what they call it; where an individual returns to an ex in the hopes of finding what once was, thereby completing the regression into a certain time in his or her past that is remembered as so much better than the present.

I’m pondering this term as I put my 15inch MacBook Pro with Retina display atop a newly purchased iPad Pro. In fact, the iPad is still residing in that temporary buyers’ remorse phase where it still sports its plastic wrap. I won’t be needing either of this devices this evening.

It’s time to explore an old friend, and find out if he has turned to $#*!.

The 2009 MacBook Pro, the elder statesman of my devices, sits on its side on the floor by my bed. It has to remain constantly plugged in to avoid the quick death that comes with having the battery carry the weight of handling background computing functions.

I remove the old laptop from the sleeve it’s lived in since it was given to me as a high school graduation gift. The shell of the device gives away its age immediately. The aluminum unibody casing is discolored and scratched badly, giving the computer a battle tested, yet unaesthetic, look. Even so, I can’t help but smile as I recall all the late nights in the library, the meetings planning events, and the classes spent on Facebook instead of taking notes. The damage on its aluminum is not so much a product of neglect, but rather of intense use and companionship.


I place the laptop on it’s rightful perch on my thighs, and the weight and thickness from the old components, like the optical drive, is immediately evident, and unpleasant. Not only does the computer look old, but now it comes to light how old it feels as well.

I flip the clamshell open, and that doesn’t feel too great either, to be honest. Over the last 7 years, the hinge has become mushy, and now the top flips open haphazardly. This is bearable though, because once I select an angle to use the laptop at, it holds. I press the power button, and the screen reluctantly comes to life.

After years of using Apple products with Retina displays, the ‘09 computer’s screen looks deplorable. One really has to ask how he or she survived using the low resolution found here for so long. It’s remarkable what passes as “cutting edge” when looking at one generation of technology to the next. Look, you can even see the pixels in the picture below! Perhaps this is too personal a gripe, as many continue to use this same screen or a similar one on computers like the the MacBook Air without complaint. At the same time, there’s a good chance these people haven’t gotten a chance to use a Retina laptop, so they have no basis for comparison, and no idea what they are missing.


I bang the old keys to enter my account password, a welcome reminder of the papers written, emails sent, and Facebook messaging done. In fact, this keyboard feels better than the one found on the 2014 MacBook Pro with Retina Display, which frankly feels kind of “clickity,” as opposed to the elder Mac’s “clackity.” The travel and rebound on the ‘09 are more noticeable for sure, while the ‘14 feels quite shallow with not a ton of travel in the keys. A keyboard has never been a huge deal, but rather an added delight to my computer experience, so I can accept the slightly less than ideal experience typing on the ‘14 in exchange for improvements like the Retina display. However, I may begin to reach for the ‘09 instead if I find myself in a situation where a lot of writing needs to get done. The trackpad, on the other hand, is a different story. It feels sluggish and clunky compared to the new one found on the ’14.


That about does it for the hardware that you can see and touch. Now for software performance. I should note that everything in this machine is as it was purchased back in June 2009, except for the RAM, which was upgraded from 4GB to 8GB in early 2014.

Since the end of my college career, I’ve been a pretty light laptop user. I really only went with the 15 inch model of MacBook for two reasons: 1, because I was an Apple Retail Store employee at the time and wanted to maximize the use of the massive discount, and 2, a desire for the extra screen real estate. As such, it’s probable that the ‘09 can handle the tasks I need done: browsing the web, watching video, writing for this site, sending some email, etc. I didn’t test the laptop on intense tasks like editing video or gaming, because they are not essential to my ability to use this computer as my daily machine. Additionally, it’s rather obvious that a 2009 computer of any brand would not be ideal for this kind of work.

Anyway, Let’s get on with the testing. First up: checking social media. The computer should be able to accomplish this, which is probably/pathetically the majority of what I do with my current devices, and usually the first.

I navigate to Facebook using Safari, and do some browsing. It’s not bad at all, as pages load comparably fast to my newer tech. However, I notice some lag in scrolling through the news feed, and the trackpad feels even slower to respond on the webpage than on my desktop when no programs were running. I open Twitter in another tab, which puts additional and again noticeable strain on navigation. It’s slight though, and tolerable.

To add to the stress on the machine, I add another tab, the PortaBloggy WordPress page, and boot up YouTube to stream some music. I start typing, which goes is alright at first, but after a few words, lag sets in. Auto correct is also slow to respond to corrections, and YouTube skips in the background. This would not work as a writing and listening solution for me as a soon-to-be-world-famous-blogger. It is a poor experience, and introduces frustration in the form of hiccups when trying to write.

I now open a fifth tab, Gmail. I mark some conversations as read and draft an email to my co-bloggers about who is going to cover Thursday with a post. Same issue, more lagging on text input and a skipping video in the background.

Tab #6. Netflix. I switch off the YouTube music for now, and fire up an episode of Always Sunny in Philadelphia (watch it if you haven’t). Oh man, does this computer hate me right now. The video of the show is stutters badly. I jump back to Facebook to check notifications and Twitter to check new tweets, and both are super sluggish in their response to my trackpad prompts. Typing a post on WordPress is impossible, due to pauses when the website auto-saves my work. With this much going on at once, this machine feels truly unusable. I step away from the laptop for a moment, and return to jump around tabs again, only to find the performance has worsened greatly. The fans are going at top speed, and in the 30 minutes I’ve been using the computer, the battery has gone from full to 50%, so taking this out of the house for work on the go, without the charger, is not an option. This wouldn’t work for someone looking to head down to the local Starbucks and get some writing done.

All things considered, the ’09 MacBook performed admirably and surpassed expectations. While not a buttery smooth experience like the two products I set aside for this review, this computer would step up when required to do some very light web browsing and writing, as long as that’s all one is doing. Oh, and bring your charger if you are leaving the house.

I know this omits a ton of topics a typical review would cover, but this is what I do on my computer, and what I believe the majority of computer users do on their computers as well. Besides, a tech-informed individual would already be aware that this machine would not provide a usable experience for video editing and the like, so I felt it unneccessary to explore those use cases.

While I wouldn’t make this computer the first choice for fulfilling my needs as an individual and my needs as a blogger, it certainly was a dose of nostalgia to use it, and made me smile in the process.

7/10, might use again. Not $#*!.


Introducing Chipotle Roulette

Editor’s Note: This post is the first in a series of PortaBloggy “Life Hacks,” centered around the digestive system and ways to get creative with your #2 time. Enjoy! -PJS

This past Wednesday, I decided to play a dangerous game. I ate Chipotle at 2pm, and I had a flight at 8:30pm.

In light of the recent E. Coli outbreak and questionable food safety at America’s favorite slightly classy fast food restaurant, I figured it would be fun to eat it for lunch, and then fly halfway across the country that evening. This was to be the ultimate test of my intestinal fortitude, using perhaps one of the best methods for doing so in the 21st century. I was being a millenial. I was being a blogger. I was being irrational. People have written long form pieces and even books about less interesting topics. Pondering this, I ordered, then devoured, my double-chicken-guacamole-Tabasco-added-on-top burrito bowl in about 15 minutes. It went down great. I wiped my mouth with the brown recycled napkin. Now, it was time to play. The name of the game? Chipotle Roulette.

For the rest of the afternoon, I ran some errands and packed the rest of my items. At around 5pm, my friends and I headed to the train station to catch the AirTrain to John F. Kennedy International Airport. Everything went smoothly; from checking in at the automated kiosks, to clearing security, to finding seats together at the gate.

As we sat down and placed our luggage by our feet, my friends announced that they wanted to get something to eat. I, having eaten such a high volume of chicken, white rice, and black beans, decided to skip this meal, and volunteered to hang back with everyone’s bags. This actually turned out to be pretty stressful. What if my digestive system decided now was the time for the unruly gang of ingredients to be purged from my body? I reached for my phone to tell the guys not to be long when a text came in from one of them: “We’re getting Chinese, want something?” I thought for a minute. While not hungry, I could certainly eat, especially a little pork lo mein perhaps. The side benefit being, the stakes in this round of Chipotle Roulette had just been raised and compounded significantly. I responded with my order, and in a few minutes four young men were chowing down on some Chinese food at Gate 7 in the JetBlue terminal of JFK airport. Dignity optional.

We finished our meals and boarded the plane without issue. I grabbed my seat on the plane, proud of my body for still holding the garbage I had put in it without complaint. The flight was pretty smooth, aside from the delay in taking off due to a backlog of planes waiting for runway space. After four hours in the air, we landed in Denver, and this round of Chipotle Roulette was won by me, handily.

My goal in writing this is to inform PortaBloggy’s readers about this fun, self-imposed challenge that can be issued at any time. Have it for lunch before a work event taking place that evening. Have it for the dinner before going out drinking for the night. Will you have to go or will you not have to go? That is the question. The answer is yours to find out. May the guac be ever in your favor.

Also, PortaBloggy would like to announce a business relationship with and our own endorsement of Chipotle. They get more diners, we get more readers who find themselves on the toilet after their meal. It’s a win win here, so please, head over to your neighborhood Chipotle and PortaBloggy, in that order.

Brooklynite Found Pt. 1

Jacob grabbed his phone, keys, wallet and briefcase, and quickly rushed out the door of his small, yet charming, 2 bedroom apartment in Park Slope.

“I’m late, I’m late!” cried Jacob, as he scurried down the subway station steps and raced towards the arriving Manhattan-bound train.

Please swipe again” appeared on the miniature screen above the turnstile.

Jacob obliged, swiped his MetroCard a second time, but was met with “Please swipe again.

Jacob, noticeably agitated, swiped a third time, only to come across the earth-shattering prompt that read “Insufficient fare.” He turned around and made his walk of shame to the kiosk, soaking in the death stares from commuters stuck in line behind him.

This is how Jacob normally begins his daily commute to work. No, not by being denied entry due to lack of funds (though the $2.75 fare is unworldly), but by willingly hopping aboard the claustrophobic shuttle we call the subway.

“This day could NOT get off to a worse start,” he muttered to himself. Jacob was late to a meeting at his office, and knew his boss would not be a happy camper.

Finally aboard the next train, Jacob could not believe how overcrowded it was. He squeezed his way in, only to be shoved further into this mosh pit by the crowd behind him. He was a sardine in a can. The train then began it’s slow, screeching crawl to the next station.

Ten minutes went by, and Jacob still wasn’t able to move an inch. “Well, it’s no use to email my boss ‘I’ll be late.’ There’s no chance I’ll get service down here.” He thought to himself. No chance indeed. For reasons unbeknownst to man, in the year 2016, there remains no cellular service in the subway tunnels of New York City (yet little Boston has service in its tunnels…)

The train screeched to a sudden halt. “Oh, what now!” gasped Jacob, as a large man braced himself onto Jacob’s hips to regain his balance.

“Ladies and gentlemen, we are being held momentarily due to train traffic ahead of us. We apologize for any inconvenience,” echoed the prerecorded announcement throughout the sardine can. “They don’t mean this apology. They never mean it.” Jacob thought to himself.

All he could do was think. The train was stuck. He had no room to maneuver his hands. For some reason, the large man’s hands were still on his hips. A grueling ten minutes later, the train resumed its slow crawl, and Jacob arrived at his destination. Not even noon and thoroughly defeated, Jacob lethargically sat at his desk and read the admonishing emails from his boss.

He hated this cycle and needed a way out. Not the job, which he (somewhat) enjoyed, but the daily grind of this nightmarish commute.

There was a soft ping in his headset, and a G-chat appeared from his old college roommate Kelvin:

Kelvin: Hey man how’s it hanging?

Jacob: Not so great, pal. The MTA is draining my soul.

Kelvin: Sorry to hear that. You ever try CitiBike?

Jacob: Citibike? For sure not. That’s just for tourists. And a public relations stunt from Citigroup because of their role in the 2008 financial crisis. The last thing we need is more bikes in this city.

Kelvin: Just think about it, bud. I’ll email you my offer code for a free ride.

Jacob had always wondered how Kelvin remained so slim and fit after they graduated college. He also recalled how Kelvin had so much energy at the end of the day when they would go for happy hour drinks. “Why not, I’ll give it a shot,” he said to himself.

.   .    .

Jacob made his way to the nearest CitiBike station and entered Kelvin’s free code. Using Google Maps, Jacob pre-planned his route using all the nearest bike lanes. He hopped on the bike, strapped his bag to the pannier, and began his journey.

Feeling nervous, he proceeded with caution, stopping at every red light and slowing down at every yellow. His mother did tell him that biking was dangerous. He couldn’t help but notice the experienced bikers whizzing by him with grace and expertise. He admired how they were able to time the lights, avoid traffic, and ride on without having to slow down.

Jacob started to gain confidence. He felt energized from each pedal. “Wow, what a view!” Jacob said with a smile as he took in the magnificent city skyline.

“Out of the way, a**hole!” yelled an Uber driver as Jacob drifted towards the middle of the street. But Jacob remained unfazed and continued his trek home.

He finally reached the nearest dock to his apartment, and dismounted his shiny blue stallion.

Jacob finally felt free.

He felt liberated.

He was a sardine no more.


This story is the work of a guest contributor who preferred to remain anonymous. – PJS


“Help me man. Make sure you don’t leave any fingerprints.”

“It’s our bathroom dude. It’s going to have our fingerprints!”

“Fuck you. I’m stressing out right now. The least you can do is give me some God damn sympathy.”

“Sympathy? I’m in the shit with you now. Plus, I’m not the one who invited their friends over.”

“Whatever man. Go get some plastic garbage bags from under the sink and the cleaver from the kitchen. Get the rubber gloves too.”

“Fuck y–”

“Matt, just go get them.”

The body was on the couch now, carefully placed onto a commemorative 1999 New York Yankees World Series blanket that had been spread out by the two men.

“Where did it all go wrong?” The man muttered to himself.

He was startled by Matt’s re-entrance to the room, “Here are the bags. I couldn’t find the cleaver, but I think there’s an ax in the back shed.” The man nodded, but he wasn’t really listening. Instead, he was pondering the precision needed to correctly maneuver the situation he had put himself in. A single slip in the oncoming events could screw him and his brother for the rest of their lives.

“Ok, fine. Go get the ax. Just be quiet. We can’t wake Mom!”

The man opens one of the bags and tosses the Yankees blanket into it. The figure had fallen into a sitting position, staring at the man. His face was contorted into a grin.

The man recognizes the face. He recognizes the smile. He hears the laughter that accompanied both.

The voice of the figure taunted the man. “Why did you do this to me? Answer me! Hehehe.” The man questioned whether he was going crazy, but knew there was no time to do anything about it. In a few hours people would start asking questions about where the figure was.

The man needed to hurry. He couldn’t bear to look at the figure much longer. He was a friend. He was part of the family. He was also a lover.


Matt returned from the shed with the ax. “Hey Kel, are you alright man? Should I call someone for help?”

“I’m fine. Let’s just get Ben into the bags.”


Kel and Ben first met back on the bus to Our Lady of Forgiveness in the 6th grade. Kel, too scrawny to protect himself from the endless onslaught of the bullies of the local public school, was sent for a Catholic education by his parents.

The first day at the bus stop was intimidating to young Kelvin. Throughout his life he had been surrounded by loving family and friends, never knowing the cold feeling of being an outsider. There was an arctic breeze that autumn morning, stinging Kel with previously unknown loneliness and pain. Children at the bus stop would recall that Kel did not say a word during that first day, ironically. They say that now they can’t get him to stop giving unwarranted hot takes. Privately, they yearn for the Kel they met on the first day.

The bus arrived 20 minutes late that morning, an ongoing theme Kel would endure for the rest of his life. Slowly walking up the steps, the boy can smell booze coming from the overweight, middle aged bus driver. He was familiar with the smell from an uncle on his mom’s side that couldn’t handle Thanksgiving dinners. “I wonder if we’re ever going to make it there,” Kel nervously thought to himself. All of a sudden, the boy hears a faint, high pitched sound from the back of the bus. At first he couldn’t recognize the words, but the sound continued to draw him closer to the back, until he was facing a smaller Indian boy singing Will Smith’s hit single, “Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It.” Kel’s favorite song.

Ben was an innocent child. Well-mannered and always sitting up straight, he was the perfect young gentleman. The only issue with his behavior was the consistent backing out of obligations. From birthday parties to calling his grandmother in India, he would promise to do things, but would ultimately stand up the engagement. His parents hoped the strictness of a Catholic education would stop this behavior.

Kel the white Irish Catholic, had never before seen a darker skinned boy of his age. He was intrigued. His parents had warned him of those of a different skin tone, but he was hypnotized by the way Ben’s skin glistened in the light.

The site of Kel’s intimidated face brought Ben’s singing to a sudden halt. Mustering the courage to say something, especially to someone he was fascinated by, Kel said the only words he could think of. “Hi, I’m Kel.” Ben smiled.

Little did either of the boys know, but this was the beginning of the most important relationship of either of their lives. What started as a friendship would grow into a forbidden love. Once their parents caught wind of the romance, they chose to split the boys up. Kel’s parents were old school Catholics, and would probably make Ted Cruz blush on the topic of homosexuality. Yes, they loved their son very much, but they knew young Kel would never get through Heaven’s Golden Gates of Endless Happiness if he didn’t change his ways. To remedy the situation, they sent their son to the once prestigious High Holiness High School, a different school than Ben was going to. The school held the principles of the Catholic Church, no doubt, but also was lenient on discipline. They hoped that the right girl with just the right amount of insecurity could change the course of Kel’s future.


It wasn’t always easy, but Kel and Ben kept in contact throughout the years, even during college. They would meet up during breaks, and were able to keep their love a secret. They graduated, and both were fortunate to start working in New York City. They planned to move in together into a quaint apartment in Brooklyn in the fall of 2015, and they decided that would be the right time to reveal their love to the world.

That was at least the plan.

There’s a saying, “Tell God your plans and he laughs.” On the day Kel and Ben were planning to sign their lease after weeks of negotiations, God laughed thunderously.

It had been a week since Ben and Kel had agreed to the price with their new landlord, Gloria Goldstein. Gloria was a hardened soul, growing up and living in the Brooklyn home since she was born. Her grandfather, the original owner, had won the home in a poker game during the early 1900’s. Having being passed down from generation to generation, the house had a certain life to it. Ghosts of past family members would often creep their way through the halls. Gloria, as the home, was once a strong, peaceful woman. But as the years passed, she changed dramatically. Bills began to pile up and renovations were desperately needed. Reluctantly, Gloria with the help of a young Asian neighbor, Anthony, were able to put the “Renters Wanted” posting on the Internet.

As any landlord would, Gloria had a simple background check run on the young men. In the report, Ben was found to have no alarming incidents. Kel, on the other hand, was a different story. Five incidents were listed involving Kel while he was in college. All five involved apartment cooking fires. Two of them were due to tin foil in the microwave. Gloria had no choice but to deny Kel from leasing the apartment.

Ben saw the apartment as too good of a deal to let go. After 2-years of commuting to New York City on the LIRR, he could not take it anymore. So he went on Craigslist and created a “Roommate Wanted” post. “Young Indian millennial looking for roommate that enjoys hiding the pickle.” Unknown to Ben, hiding the pickle has a sexual innuendo. When he was growing up, Ben and his family would make their own pickles. After they were done, his parents would hide the pickles all over the house for him and his siblings to find. Needless to say, Ben loved the game.

Alex Dabber was an interesting fellow. The man had always had a self-entitled and totalitarian attitude. This was evidenced by him being upset when excluded from weekend plans and complaining about not being invited to sporting events, which he didn’t actually enjoy (he just wanted to go to give his opinion). Ben originally met Dabber at a high school party with Kel. Although no one knew of their partnership, Alex was able to see past the ruse. He sensed their love and was jealous of it. So pure and unadulterated, if he was unable to have it, no one could. Seeing a chance to finally disrupt their love, Alex quickly sent Ben a text. “I want in on the apartment!”


For the first 2 months, everything was working out great between Alex and Ben. They rode the subway together to and from work, and ate together during the nights. On Wednesday nights they would head to the bar down the street and play Roc n Roll Bingo. On weekends, Kel came to visit, and all three men would go out together. They even went to a Knicks game, where Alex was on his phone the whole time. Even so, Ben couldn’t have enjoyed living the city more.

Although Ben had always been faithful to Kel, Kel was suspicious. Alex was always around when he was over and was a little too comfortable with Ben for his liking. His Instagram was filled pictures of Ben, and one night, he thought for sure he saw Alex make a pass at him. Though he feared the worst, Kel thought he was being jealous and should keep these thoughts to himself. He came up with a plan, which was to invite Ben and their larger group friends over the next weekend. They would play some poker, drink some beers, and everything would be great.


That Friday, Kel and Ben met at Penn Station after work to catch the train back to Long Island.  Like the bus that fateful first day of 6th grade, the train was late by 20 minutes. This wasn’t actually too bad for the Long Island Railroad, and Kel thought this was the first sign of a good weekend to come.

They returned to Kel’s parents’ home, and Ben got his things for the evening ready. As he was getting his things out of his bag, his phone beeped. Taking a look to see what it was, he laughed.

“Hehehe, that Alex,” he said to himself. Ben picked up his things and continued to the bathroom for a shower.

Kel had overheard Ben. “Fuck Alex!” Kel exclaimed. Ben’s phone continued to get notifications, again and again and again.

“This guy, I should tell him to get the fuck out of my face.” Kel walked over to Ben’s phone. He then saw something he could not unsee. Several naked photos of Alex appeared on his phone. Kel shivered in pain, but that quickly grew into uncontrollable anger. He proceeded to grab a towel, wrap it around his hands, and he headed to the bathroom. He quietly opened the door and scowled at the figure in the shower. He positioned himself so he would be behind the figure. He firmly grasped both ends of the towel, took a deep breath, and with catlike reflex pulled back the curtain and wrapped the towel around Ben’s neck, taking him out of the shower and down to the cold bathroom tile.

Ben struggled, but Kel was able to get on top and establish leverage. Kel’s weight was too much for Ben to get himself free. He stared at Kel and smiled before he took his final breath.

Realizing that the deed was done, Kel got off Ben. Hearing the struggle, Kel’s brother, Matt, walked into the bathroom.


“Matt, grab his legs, we got work to do,” Kel promptly told his brother.


Glaring through the window, having seen the whole evening’s events, a dark figure stood in the shadows. The only areas on him that were visible were his hands, one holding a freshly lit cigarette, and the other a new iPhone 6S.

“Yes officer, they’re leaving now. You need to hurry,” said the voice in a composed tone as he hung up the phone.

A devilish grin appeared on the man’s face. He took another drag of his cigarette as Kel and his brother started to pick up the trash bags. Snow, which had started over an hour ago, began to get heavier, covering his beanie. Sounds of sirens blared in the distance, drawing closer to his location. He watched Kel grab the final bag and turn off the light.

Now, Alex could only see himself and his reflection in the glass of the window. He was cold and alone in the dark. He continued staring at a face that he did not recognize anymore. A face that had deceived and manipulated. The satisfaction he was feeling seconds ago was replaced with depression and despair. He cried out to the sky, but only the devil answered because God wasn’t there.

Alex grabbed the revolver from his pocket and raised it to his head. The devil stared and smiled at him through the reflection of the window.


– The end-

March Madness 2016

Each year, the country is drawn to the insanity of the NCAA College Basketball Tournament. From the casual sports fan to the current student to the crazy alum, each is drawn to the games in a winner-take-all tournament. Everyone knows the big names: Duke, Kentucky, Louisville, North Carolina, and UCLA, but this year there is no clear cut favorite. Due to this, the 2016 tournament is poised to be one hell of a ride.

The casual fan in America probably hates the idea that there is no clear favorite entering the tournament. He or she wants a dominant #1 so they can win the office pool or some bets in Vegas. As an avid college basketball fan, I love this. Why? Because of one reason and one reason alone, the chaos. It makes it so much more entertaining that a small school can upset a traditional powerhouse in this year’s tournament. Think of the years where teams such as George Mason, Davidson, Florida Gulf Coast, or VCU went on runs. It creates better stories, and the nation does seem to be much more interested if there’s potential for a Cinderella Story to make it all the way.

We all know everyone loves filling out brackets. People pick the games and hope against hope that they can get that perfect bracket, along with the fat prize check that comes with it. There are all types of strategies for picking: which mascot would win in a fight? I like the color blue instead of red. That team has cool bench celebrations. That senior looks pretty cute. (Looking at you, Ryan Arcidiacono) This year, you probably can keep whatever strategy you’ve been using the past 17 years and you might turn into a genius, and a millionaire. If you don’t have any slightly insane methods for picking the games, well, you might want to get on it. This tournament is wide open.

Why is this tournament such a crapshoot? There are several reasons. First, top ranked teams have been taking losses like crazy. Just this week, 8 of the top 10 teams lost. That is insane! If you take a look at the rankings this year, the recurring theme has been the number one ranked team staying in that spot for two or three weeks and then dropping due to a loss or losses. The longest a team has been ranked #1 in the AP Poll was Michigan State. They held that honor for four weeks earlier in the season. The rest of the season, the #1 ranked team has held for three weeks or less. In fact, this even carries over to the Top 10. Teams make it into the Top 10 and lose a game or two and subsequently drop. That is not supposed to happen, and we are a week from the conference tournaments! One has to believe the upsets are just beginning, and that the the 64th ranked team has just as good of an opportunity to win the tournament as the Number 1.

Another reason for this unpredictable year is the “one and done” rule. College basketball has been and is becoming a one-year pit stop on some star players’ roads to the NBA. These players don’t care about going to class, and they don’t care about the team. They care about getting through that one year of college, and then being on their way to the draft and to being a professional. It’s hard to blame them; if I had their talent, I would probably take that route too. The NCAA can fix this, but they choose not to, and as a result, many players jump to the NBA or overseas prematurely. College basketball is about developing as a player, and most of these guys are still pretty raw after their one-year. Coaches can work with them to encourage them to work as part of a team, teach them how to handle adversity, and how to improve their game. By leaving early, players are depriving themselves of these experiences, and America of the opportunity to see a game with higher teamwork and chemistry.

The third big reason for inconsistency in top teams’ play is the lack of talent of some of the “top freshmen.” Every year, we see the McDonald’s All Americans who are going to take the college basketball world by storm. This year, there are two top freshmen, and then everyone else. Ben Simmons and Brandon Ingram are the top two freshmen in college basketball this year. They have so much talent that they are projected as the number 1 and 2 picks in most NBA mock drafts, but there aren’t many freshman players close behind them. Even so, both aren’t accomplishing as much as you would expect of players of their caliber in college. Ben Simmons, for example, is the best player in the country, yet his team, LSU, may not even make it to the tournament!

Also an issue this season is poor play on the road. It would seem that during conference play, teams are having a difficult team dealing with the adversity that comes with playing on road, mainly from being out of their element and dealing with deafening noise from fans. We’ve seen normally tightly coached teams become prone to dumb mistakes, which wind up being costly if the home team can capitalize. High emotion rivalries are also huge, and this year is no different. Higher ranked teams come into a rivalry building with a target on their back, and can end up dropping the game if they aren’t composed and smart with the basketball. This can come into play during the tournament as teams are playing far away from their campuses, and have to deal with travel after every couple rounds.

The final big reason for the inconsistency this year is injuries. I know every team is going to experience nicks and bruises throughout the season, but it seems that a lot of players have been hurt and have been out for a long period of time, and other players haven’t stepped up. Some teams put all their eggs in one basket with their star, and when that player goes down, the team is left scrambling. If you look at any team, you can find a top player who was, or is, currently hurt. I know injuries happen, but teams not being prepared and the lack of that player bouncing back has definitely damaged their seasons, and may continue to affect them in the tournament.

“The Tourney” is probably my favorite event to watch. I am locked and loaded from opening tip until the final score. I won’t give you my answer for who I think will win this tournament, as it is only March 1, and there is still plenty that can happen, but I firmly believe this tournament will keep up with the overarching season theme of extreme volatility. There will be upsets. Top programs will fall. Cinderella’s will be born. So get your best bracket picking strategy ready, because it might actually pay off this time around.

Let the chaos begin!







Welcome – A Letter from the Editor


Welcome to PortaBloggy! This site is the result of over a month of discussion, collaboration, and procrastination by myself and three of my good friends: Brandon Babwah, Brian Graney, and Kevin Hunker. I speak for all of us when I say we are looking forward to producing content that will sometimes be solid, but most times will probably disappoint. But hey, we’re trying, so that’s got to count for something right?

Our goal here is simple: to produce pieces of writing that are long enough for your bathroom time, but not so long that you spend your whole morning in there (well, unless you want to, in which case we won’t judge). Like any bowel movement, the writing here will be a collection of different styles, different genres, and different stories. We have a pretty eclectic group of individuals writing here, each bringing something unique to the table that will allow us to hopefully appeal to a broad audience. We wanted to write, and we wanted a place to do it, but we also wanted a site that came to be thanks to a strong objective and mission, and we think PortaBloggy is just that.

We welcome feedback and suggestions in the comment sections and on Twitter. This won’t be perfect for a while, but we’re going to work hard to achieve our goals, and hope you will enjoy watching us grow. If you’d like, for some reason, to contribute or have something published here, please email us. Also, check out the About and Staff pages.

So please, grab a seat, pull out your phone, and let’s take this journey together.


Super Tuesday Presidential Candidates and Their Toilet Paper Brand Equivalents

Well, it’s here: Super Tuesday. Arguably the second most important date in an election cycle behind the actual general election. On the Republican side, 11 states will vote and ultimately dish out 595 delegates to the five remaining candidates. On the Democratic side, Clinton and Sanders will battle for 865 delegates in 11 states and American Samoa. These primary elections have been an absolute circus. Candidates hurling middle-school insults at each other, barking like dogs, tweeting (this is where I imagine I’ve gone back to 1776 and had to explain to Benjamin Franklin what tweeting is and how it’s become a platform for candidates running for the most important office in the world and I have to look into Ben’s disappointed eyes and console him and tell him everything they’re working for still has meaning), and acting in a morally questionable manner. What better way to describe my feelings towards them all while tying in the central theme of our new blog site than by comparing each candidate with the paper we use to wipe our butts. Without further adieu.


Donald Trump – Charmin Ultra Soft

On the surface Charmin Ultra Soft seems like it’s a great idea. Easily the richest of the toilet papers (63 cents/176-sheet roll). Strong message with the two-ply action. People who use this probably think to themselves “Hey, there’s no harm in this. I know this is probably a little over-the-top and I don’t need it but hey I’ll give it a whirl.” But ultimately after a few months of  use the shtick gets old. Even the jingle with the bears running around and singing “Cha Cha Cha Charmin” lacks substance. Next thing you know, the toilet bowl starts acting up, it gets tougher and tougher to flush and next thing you know you’re calling up the plumber and your stuck with a $367 bill. Make pooping great again!

Bernie Sanders – Cottonelle Aloe & E

Designed to be as gentle as possible, Cottonelle Aloe & E gives everyone what they think they want. Aloe on toilet paper is like free education and healthcare for everyone. All the poor people want it but at the end of the day it’s outlandish and unrealistic plus who’s gonna pay for that?!?

Ted Cruz – Envision

Ever get into work after a miserable commute go straight for the shitty pantry coffee in your office only to be speed walking to the bathroom thirty minutes later? You finally get into the stall for a little relief and when you go to grab for a couple squares you get hit with the harshest, sandpaper-like ply imaginable. This unique design has the sole purpose of making you and your bum sensitive for the next 24 hours of your life. Uncomfortable, unnecessarily harsh, and probably doesn’t believe in evolution. That’s what envision is all about.

Hillary Clinton – Scott 1000

Probably the most sensible toilet paper in the game. Scott 1000 is nothing flashy but for a one-ply TP it’s got the best value. Dissolves quick and easily, quality price per roll (67 cents/1000-sheet roll), and won’t clog the internal plumbing. However, it’s also the type that is perceived as rough, falls apart in your hand, and will probably not do as good a job as its husband.

Marco Rubio – Quilted Northern Mega Roll

Ranking somewhere in the middle of the pack, Quilted Northern is the brand we’ve all heard of but nobody’s ever really taken the plunge and tested it out. It appears to be a well-absorbing, thick 2-ply product that remains strong when wet. Much like Charmin Ultra Soft, you could run into issues with plumbing here. But that’s just a chance you’re going to have to take when you purchase anything with “Mega” in it’s title.


So, there you have it. They’re all shit.