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OTP’s Offseason Guide to Chirptastic Living

OTP Offseason Guide Logo 200It’s the offseason in BSU football land, spring athletics are just now firing up, and winter sports are still a bit away from their post season. As such, it’s time to pass on your OTP leadership’s recommendations on things you shouldn’t be living without. Between the folks that run this here site, our tastes and likes run the gamut. We pass that diversity in entertaining pursuits on to you in a little thing we like to call OTP’s Offseason Guide to Chirptastic Living, where you can take our word on things that you should promptly put in your possession. Enjoy…

Movie of the Week
Inside Llewyn Davis AmazonInside Llewyn Davis
Coen Brothers movies are admittedly not for everyone. For me, it gets no better as they were the driving forces behind such classics as O Brother, Where Art Thou?, The Big Lebowski, No Country for Old Men, and Raising Arizona. They even gave Muncie a shout out in The Hudsucker Proxy. All great flicks, all for different reasons. The Coen’s latest creation, Inside Llewyn Davis is THE film to check out if you enjoy movies that have killer music, a not so sappy happy ending, a tremendous study in characters, and a cinematic adventure that at the conclusion leaves you thinking about a whole host of different things depending on how you interpret the last couple hours that you just invested. The cliché of Hollywood about a character who is troubled or ill-fortuned coming to a point of reckoning can often times be hokey or even ridiculous. Not this time. Not this character. At its base, it is a few days in the life of a struggling musician attempting to make it on the East Coast folk scene in the 1960s with a cast of characters he meets (Bonus for the ladies: Justin Timberlake!). That attention to character is what made it so well received at the Cannes Film Festival last year and what won it the Grand Prix. Normally, I’m cautious of a movie that receives rave critical reviews as, for the most part, film critics love what I hate and vice versa, but they have finally got something right with Llewyn Davis.

Book of the Week
No Asshole Rule AmazonThe No Asshole Rule
Odds are if you have ever worked in an office, you’ve had colleagues and coworkers who were the epitome of everything you hated. Perhaps they were annoying. Perhaps they talked to much. Perhaps they didn’t talk enough. Maybe they were doing bong rips in the bathroom and pissing all over the toilet seat. There really isn’t a finite list of things that could encapsulate all the behaviors that would qualify someone as a royal pain the ass at your workplace. I can say in my career more than a few times I’ve wondered how many of my officemates even got themselves dressed without Velcro shoes. Suffice to say, Robert Sutton’s No Asshole Rule was sorely needed. Business self-help psychology books are at base root sort of elementary. This however at least finds a humorous way to pass on some coping strategies for the incompetent momos you surround yourself with or the things you’re doing without realizing that are making your coworkers want to brain you with a three-hole punch. Which, if you feel like these things don’t apply to you and all your coworkers exist in harmonious joy, either you have not had a real job or you, in fact, are said asshole. I would advise you to stop leaving pictures of body parts on the copier and please put on some damn pants.

Game of the Week
Apples to Apples AmazonApples to Apples
We recommended Cards Against Humanity a few weeks ago in our Offseason Guide to Chirptastic Living and classified it as an adult version of Apples to Apples. For those who aren’t adults, like to play games with non-adults, or have delicate sensibilities that may be a bit easier wronged on the offensive scale, nothing beats the original. Believe me when I say, this game could not be easier. Or more family friendly if that’s important to you. One person draws a source card, the other players lay down descriptive words and phrases from their hand, and the person who’s turn it is picks a winner. The person who laid the winning card gets a point, once you hit a certain point total, you win. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy. For example, let’s say Edge, Bababrewey, RV and myself are playing. I draw a card that says Modern Day Love Story. Edge throws down his “Di and Charles” card, Bababrewey throws down a “Sports fan” card, and RV throws down “Justin Bieber”. I don’t know who threw which, because they are subsequently mixed up. I just pick whatever card I deem the funniest/wittiest/most inappropriate/etc. There is no rhyme and reason and fun ensues. For the record I would pick Bieber. ALWAYS PICK BIEBER.

Gadget of the Week
Blue Yeti AmazonBlue Yeti USB microphone
One of the questions we get most often at the Pylon other than age/sex/location? is how we get such a clear sound on the OTPcast. Part of that comes from Jason being a great producer, part of it comes from the equipment we use to record it, as it’s hard to run the Kentucky Derby on a donkey. Without getting too technical, largely because I am too ignorant to do so, it is difficult to achieve premium sound from two remote locations connected by Skype, yet the OTPcast is recorded with one of us in Indianapolis and the other in central Kentucky. The reason it sounds so clear is because of the mics we use, the Yeti Blue USB microphone. I could dazzle you with terms like latency, gain control, and audio pattern selection, but I don’t know what they mean and neither do you. What you need to know is it sounds boss and it makes your recordings sound bosser. What’s that? You don’t record a podcast? Good. Because we have that on lockdown anyway. But odds are you do use your mic more than you think. Any kind of audio or video production? Need a mic. Skype with relatives? Need a mic. Want to try your hand at some voice overs or recording music? Need a mic. Hell, even going to Chatroulette and playing around until someone shows up taking a dump is best with a mic. So trust us, get this and wow your Skype friends with your silky smooth sounds.

For each of the above, you’ll notice that we’ve also included a purchase link to Amazon.com, a site where OTP is an affiliate. By purchasing through our links, you’ll give a small little kickback to the Pylon and help keep the site afloat. If you’d like to help the site in a free way, you should check out an Amazon Prime 30 Day Free Trial by clicking here. It’s a great opportunity for streaming video, free express shipping, and all sorts of other goodies.

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