Sunday, March 11, 2007

Hardly an Idol Worshiper

Except for two seasons of The Amazing Race [the Linz and Aiello family were cool] and one of the Biggest Loser, I cannot stand "Reality" shows.

I wouldn't have cared less about American Idol except that I was in Oregon during 2004, calling home and being confused when Mom would start talking about someone named Jasmine and another named Camille. Who? They did what?!

Thus, I was dunked head-first into the world of AmIdol. Camille had something different to her and an evident local-personality. Jasmine cried like a girl but sang her heart out. Actually, I was more a fan of Camille only because Jasmine is similar in appearance to my friend JoyFul who had tried out that season. Those who know JoyFul know I 'aint lyin' when I say that the lady can out-sing anyone. She said her nerves got her at the audition and that's probably true 'cause JoyFul's not the type to seek out the spotlight, yet I would've bet she'd have been on the stage at the end with Fantasia. Maybe it wasn't her nerves; maybe the judges already let in a few Jasmines by then and JoyFul no longer "stood out".

Then I dropped out of the AmIdol loop. Either the big-D (my doctorate thesis) or a better show got my votes.

Then for some reason, out of my own volition, I watched AmIdol last year; maybe I was somewhat avoiding big-D. "Chicken Little" annoyed me to no end; I was waiting for him to cry. I liked Ace's falsetto and yes, sometimes I am attracted to the pretty boys. I tried voting a couple of times but never got through so gave up, but I was calling for Chris Daughtry [not another Chris! They're invading my life!] and for Katherine McPhee. I liked Chris rocking out and yes, sometimes I can appreciate a pretty girl [not in that way and not ever sexually but, like others, I have an appreciation for inner- and outer- beauty]. I just couldn't wrap my mind around Hicks on the show...I just can't...

This season, I caught a couple of the audition shows. I couldn't believe the mother and daughter with the floor-length hair; right now, my hair is the longest it has EVER been and reaches a little below the middle of my back when I straighten it. I like my long hair and feel very feminine, but I'm finding that it bothers me to have it get stuck under the straps if I have to carry a backpack and somewhat annoys me as I sleep 'cause I don't like sleeping on top of my hair and always brush it to the side but now that it's long, I have to brush it aside more often and... [ach, shut up about hair].

Oh, so for the auditions, I liked Chris Sligh [not another!], Antonella, Melinda, Phil Stacey, and Gina.

It's unfortunate about the Antonella picture thing, but as Simon said, she held up well after that [you will never find pics like that of me, they don't exist so don't even look].

I didn't vote during the top 24 and most likely won't vote at all for the top 12. I probably won't have to anyway 'cause Melinda's my front-runner and she blew it out the past few weeks! Her humility elevates her to unbelievable heights in my opinion. And I can relate to one of her video pieces; I could definitely use a personal stylist, one with an understanding and sensitivity of island life and my delicate skin.

I also like (surprise) rocker Gina. For the guys, I still like Phil and Chris Sligh. I also liked Blake mixing it up to 311's "All Mixed Up". I can't believe Randy and Paula didn't know it! Ahh, it takes me back to my CA days and all-night studio sessions with the Ripoll or driving around, getting lost in the Hills of Beverly with B-H at 3 in the morning... good times!

I'm sorry, what? Oh, so I commented in the previous entry about who I want off AI, here's what I said: Even though, like a good local, I am proud of our local people making the national stage, but Mom'll tell you that I don't support every single one JUST because they once lived in Hawaii. Case in point: that guy on AmIdol who lived in Kauai for four years and did a terribly fake tourist hula on his AmIdol video. I didn't vote for anyone yet, but I would've voted for him to be booted if I could've.

I still can't stand AmIdol. I can't stand Seacrest even more. What his kindergarten remarks to Simon have to do with anything on the show or as entertainment is beyond me. It's annoying. And isn't it great to make it to the top 24, do your best to sing your best, and have Paula tell you not to worry 'cause you're beautiful? Yes, sarcasm. It absolutely annoys me when she says something like that. I guess Idol's my thing I love to hate. If Mr. Hula makes it to the 10, I'm quitting.


Volleyball: Still Not Worried

Okay, now it's coming down the stretch to the MPSF playoffs. The Rainbow Warriors have yet to win a match since playing USC on February 16. They're currently in 10th place in the MPSF and 14th nationally. And this past weekend, they battled another #1 team: Pepperdine.

Sounds like a death sentence right?

Far from it. As I said earlier, the MPSF is the toughest conference in collegiate volleyball with the top 4 teams shifting places constantly. That UH had taken its place among the top 4 constantly if not consistently in the past...I don't know how many years, and is now at its lowest ranking ever, I'm still not worried about our team.

It seems that everyone in the MPSF are stepping up their game and loading up on talent this year. It's anyone's guess, even more so this year, as to who will be MPSF champs, or the NCAA champs.

But back to my team: back in Jan., we started the season playing UC Irvine who were #1 at the time. I have to say that UCI was very impressive last year and I was one who expected them to hold #1, maybe #2 throughout the season, even in the very volatile MPSF.* We lost both matches.

After the win against USC, the 'Bows [forgive me, my favorite cheer is still "let's go 'BOWS!"] were on the road to play two matches against the #4 BYU, who had been #1 just the previous week. We lost both matches [it was difficult to listen to that over the radio].

Then they came home to play the Alumni match. Mom and I were in attendance as Coach Wilton rested his seniors (Beckwith, Hakala, Kalima, Dante). It was different and still very fun! Usually I get tickets in the Student Rooter section (near the band), but since the Alumni match was reduced price, Mom and I sat in the lower section, almost in line with the net. I have 20/20 vision still, so the players' faces weren't any clearer for me. The upper official blocked my view of the net though, so I couldn't see any blocks happen.

However, the crowd was small and quiet compared to a near-capacity crowd, so I could hear the players talking on the court. Eyal and Costas were electric as teammates again; Costas even let out an "Oh, YEAH!" as he bumped a perfect set. Tory Tukuafu entertained the crowd; whenever the ball came over to the alumni side, he'd yell out "SET ME! SET ME!" Kai Kahele lost his shoe and Leoni, without his old trademark lion's mane but with the trademark headband, fired things up from the service line. The night was complete with a rotation error by the alumni and someone in the crowd shouting, "Let them play!" but both sides battled it out.

And then back to MPSF matches and to current #1 Pepperdine.

Pepperdine swept on Thurs. night, winning 30-28, 30-18, 30-28. I watched from home, cheering loudly at the TV screen, probably to the annoyance of neighbors. I watched as Beckwith pointed to the camera before tossing up the first serve of the night. I watched him use a much improved and effective jump serve; Hakala back at Opposite, the position which kept people at the edge of their seats last season; and they came so close and so far to winning games 1 & 2.

Saturday's game was 100% more exciting. Even though Beckwith still had to run around a bit, he fired things up with that jump serve again, an inspiring effort with several delicious sets to the hitters, getting his MB's in the act more often, and, after a dislocated finger early in game 4, served up rockets, still put up amazing sets and hustled more than...I don't know, it was just great to watch!

Freshman Matt Vanzant had a great match with 24 kills, just 8 errors, hitting .364! And now that he's getting rather consistent, you know he's just going to get better every time!

On the injury list with wana stuck in his foot, Dante played as if he was just a kid playing with his buddies: all fun, no work, zero worries. 7 kills, 1 error, .400. Kalima, listed as having the flu, must've had some mana on tap; with Cervantes stepping up big time at the L-pos., it left Kalima free to get in some swings at the net. [the full stats are even more impressive]

We lost the match, 30-28, 19-30, 28-30, and 28-30.

So the Rainbow Warriors are primed for making a run on the rest of the season (about a month left) and showing up for the playoffs. If ever there was a season that I wish I could've afforded season tickets, this would be it. Yet, I haven't missed a second of it, and don't plan to, even from home.

*I'm not just saying that because local boy Brent Asuka (Iolani) is back playing Libero for UCI (2006 MPSF newcomer of the year, first-team all-American, all-MPSF). Even though, like a good local, I am proud of our local people making the national stage, but Mom'll tell you that I don't support every single one JUST because they once lived in Hawaii. Case in point: that guy on AmIdol who lived in Kauai for four years and did a terribly fake tourist hula on his AmIdol video. I didn't vote for anyone yet, but I would've voted for him to be booted if I could've. And UCI, phenomenal so far.