NJ T-Shirt Tuesday 96: New Jersey Generals

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Although it only lasted a few years, the USFL obviously left quite an impression. Think about it, people aren’t necessarily clamoring for NY/NJ Hitmen t-shirts from Vince McMahon’s ill-fated XFL. Even though it was short lived, the USFL created enough of a stir that the NFL wound up bringing up many of the star players and even incorporated some of the rules of the game we are accustomed to today.

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Wikipedia notes that the NFL was clearly influenced by the USFL. Several rules and practices of the game we watch today were taken from the USFL game play such as the two-point conversion, challenging officials rulings using instant replay, and even a league salary cap was introduced. The main difference between the two leagues was that the USFL played their games in the spring and summer.

The local team for the NY/NJ area was The New Jersey Generals. After their abysmal first season, (the team went 6-12) the team was bought by Donald Trump. Aside from their rough start, their bright spot was running back Herschel Walker. The Generals breakout star won the rushing title in ’83 and ’85. The following year, Walker was snatched up by the Dallas Cowboys and then bounced from the Vikings to the Eagles and then to Giants for one season before going back to the Dallas Cowboys. Another major star who played for the Generals was quarterback Doug Flutie. In 1985, he helped boost the team to 2nd place with an 11-7 record before heading to the NFL.

Last month, what was first thought of as an April Fool’s Joke was actually dead serious. The USFL issued a press release stating that they would be back in business by Spring 2013. There’s no news yet on which 8 cities will have teams in the league.

Giants, Devils, and Sexy Armpit Special Edition M&M’s

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Here’s the official Sexy Armpit mascot of M&M candy! I made this little guy at the M&Ms website where you can create your own character that can be put onto t-shirts and other swag. I wouldn’t normally go to M&M’s website, but not too long ago I walking down the Atlantic City boardwalk and took my typical stroll through the It’s Sugar candy store which prompted me to visit the M&M website. They have a dizzying array of various candy products as well as a humongous replica of the Jersey landmark, Lucy The Elephant. I definitely recommend paying them a visit next time you are in Atlantic City.

What I found really cool in the store was their color separated assortments of M&M’s. They even had M&M’s blended by colors that represent local sports teams. Below are two pictures I snapped and cut together to show off their New York Giants and New Jersey Devils M&M assortment. I’m sure if I go back I can make a special Sexy Armpit edition, but I’d prefer to wait until I can get the the limited dark chocolate edition!

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Giants’ CRUZ: From Paterson To The NFC Championship!

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You see those numbers under his eyes? That’s the Paterson NJ area code! 
CRUUUUUZ!!!!

The Sexy Armpit is celebrating The New York Giants huge win over the Green Bay Packers tonight. Next week The G-Men will be facing off against the San Francisco 49ers for the NFC Championship. Before that we’d like to pay tribute to one of the G-Men who has been so instrumental to the team this year and that is Victor Cruz.

If you think you hear boos when he makes a huge catch or scores of TD, that’s actually a CRUUUUZ chant. It’s just like the BRUUUUCE chants at a Springsteen concert, maybe that’s because Cruz is also a Jersey boy. Cruz hails from Paterson, NJ, amid gangs, drug busts, and shootouts. That strife clearly could not distract him from becoming the NFL superstar that he has become.

There have been a slew of kickass Cruz moments this year. Cruz made a 99 yard touchdown on Christmas Eve 2011 against the Jets and he also now holds a Giants record for most receiving yards in a single season, but perhaps his biggest accomplishment was becoming a dad just last week. He’s already turned down the chance to be on Dancing With The Stars because he’s onto bigger and better things such as possibly taking a vacation to Disney World! Be sure to check him out next Sunday when he salsa dances all the way to the SUPER BOWL after the Giants beat the 49ers!!!

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gwj90GMIeu8?rel=0]

Harry Carson’s Captain For Life: My Story as a Hall of Fame Linebacker Review by Nick Holden

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The game of football has, is, and always will be a violent spectacle of human bodies crashing into one another at high speeds, with teams of players vying for victory at all costs. For legendary New York Giants linebacker (and Franklin Lakes resident) Harry Carson, his thirteen year career remained relatively low-key, yet his impressive numbers and his toughness earned him accolades from his fellow players, coaches, and legions of fans all across the country. But it all came at a high price for Carson, who documents his professional and personal highs and lows as member of the Giants and beyond in his new book Captain for Life: My Story as a Hall of Fame Linebacker. Staying free from the controversy that plagued players such as fellow teammate Lawrence Taylor, Carson had his share of drama yet stayed true to himself, his family, and the game, all the while paying for it with his body, the effects he still feels to this day. 
Carson, in a simple prose, charts his journey that started in a small North Carolina town during the time of the segregated South. Despite being small and ill-coordinated, he slowly rose through high school and college as a fearsome defensive end and dedicated student, winning raves both on the field and in the classroom. Drafted by the Giants in 1976, Carson was switched to linebacker and played among such notable players as Brad Van Pelt and Brian Kelley. This defensive trio, dubbed “The Crunch Bunch”, was considered one of the best linebacker teams in history. Later, after the drafting of George Martin and Taylor, the Giants rose from a last place team and the joke of football, to winning Super Bowl XXI and securing a place in history. Carson was also elected to the Pro Bowl nine times in his career and later, after much frustration and near misses, he was voted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2006.
But while he was shutting down players and putting up impressive statistics, Carson’s body bore the brunt of his physical play as he suffered several injuries; blown knees, torn muscles, and the general grind of his position would take its toll, causing him to eventually retire in 1988. But to Carson, the worse was the repeated hits to his helmet that left its mark on his body; the brain doesn’t respond well to collision, and taking multiple hits over time would cause more damage than he would realize. Carson speaks at great length about his battles with Post Concussion Syndrome, an illness that is brought on by one or numerous concussions. Once thought to be a myth in football, it is slowly become more and more prevalent in past and present players. He talks about the subtle signs such as severe headaches and sensitivity to light and noise early in his career to the more serious effects, such as drastic mood swings, slurred speech, and problems with motor coordination, symptoms that continue to afflict him. Carson breaks down the machismo of football players and is honest about his condition, saying that the game is largely responsible and he fears that while only a handful of players have come forward, many are afflicted with PCS yet ignore the many symptoms. In recent years, an alarming number of past players have died, and studies have shown that many have had brain damage that contributed to their demise. Carson now speaks about the importance of recognizing the signs of PCS and travels around the country, speaking to players about the disease in the hopes of warning them before it is too late. He deals with the pain every day, knowing that one day his mental faculties might be fully gone, and is sure that if more people know about the risks, players will think about life beyond football instead of just making the plays.

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One thing that sticks out about Carson is his frankness about everything, from his faults as a player early in his career to his bitterness about how his career ended. He also talks about the mystique of a football player, stripping away the glamour to tell it how it is; a game that swallows you mentally, physically, and emotionally. He shares his perspective of the game as a player, detailing what separates players from stars, and how he lasted so long (the average career span of a player is around four years; Carson stayed around for thirteen), competing with veteran players and winning over coaches and fans while staying away from many dangers that derail players; drugs, alcohol, and other scandals. His tell-it-like-it-is attitude and funny insight make Carson both down to earth and a likeable fellow, but his downbeat attitude toward the game that made him a name might turn off some football fans in addition to the lack of any type of photography; it would have been nice to see some pictures here and there. But if you’re a true Giants fan or a fan of Carson, Captain for Life is a must for the bookshelf.

– Nick Holden

Best of The Sexy Armpit 2009

New Jersey

There were many amazing moments for The Sexy Armpit in 2009. I was able to cover events like The New York Comic-Con, the eXXXotica expo, The Perfect Age of Rock ‘n’ Roll, (an amazing film that I hope you will all be able to see very soon), as well as Rock of Ages, the only musical on Broadway worth seeing more than once. Moreover, possibly the most enduring effect that this blog has had on my life is meeting and starting friendships with a ton of awesome people who are not only in New Jersey, but literally all over the world. I know how risky it is becoming friends with a guy from Jersey, you wouldn’t want to get caught up in any underworld riff raff, so as the Golden Girls theme song states, “Thank you for being a friend!”

I continued some of the recurring columns that I enjoy posting regularly, and I also premiered a couple of new ones too. To read the installments of my recurring columns, just click on the icons on the right sidebar. There’s NJ’s Great Pop Culture Moments, Nocturna Mission, NJ T-Shirt Tuesday, Classic WWF/WWE Event Cards from New Jersey, and the best of all… The Garden State Playmates!

There’s no Dick here. No Carson Daly either. Just a Sexy Armpit wishing you a happy and healthy new year. The only ball dropping in New Jersey is watching the NY Giants and the NJ Nets drop the ball this season. I also want to thank each and every person who have visited this blog. Whether you’re a fan and have read it extensively or just skimmed through a few posts out of curiosity, I appreciate it. As 2009 comes to an end, here’s a list of the 25 best posts from 2009 as voted by me. These are the ones that are most worthy of reading if you haven’t checked them out already.

The Sexy Armpit covers the New York Comic Con 2009! Part 1 and Part 2

NJ T-Shirt Tuesday 33: Springsteen Wrecks the Stadium

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It’s a good thing we’ve got Springsteen, because the New York Giants sure as hell didn’t come through for us this season. Couldn’t they have at least won their last game in Giants Stadium? And while I’m at it, are the G-Men really moving on to greener pastures? I’d say that playing in “The New Meadowlands Stadium” is a step down in comparison to having an entire stadium named after the Giants franchise for over 30 years. From now on, the Giants and Jets will have to share a stadium that’s generically named so it won’t offend Jets fans. Big Blue couldn’t end it all on a high note? Nope, instead they let the Carolina Panthers trounce them. It’s a good thing my woman got us tickets to see Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street band put on the last concert ever in Giants Stadium back on October 9th, 2009.

Bruce Springsteen T-Shirts
Bruce Springsteen and The E-Street Band’s final shows at Giants Stadium were commemorated with different variations of t-shirts that were available in honor of each night’s show.
I feel that BRUUUCE bid the stadium proper adieu by bringing on his own “Wrecking Ball.” If you were there, then you know how special the night was. Emotions ran high that night and Bruce was in great spirits. He uplifted the crowd in many ways, and the crowd even uplifted him when he randomly decided to stage dive. Nobody, not even the drunken buffoonery in Jersey would drop Bruce Springsteen. That’s like dropping the Queen of effing England, if for some reason she happened to be stage diving. God might not save the Queen in that instance. The last night of Springsteen’s concerts in Giants Stadium was more special than the previous shows because as far as concerts go, he’s the main event there. The spectacular show was only weakened by the fact that the G-Men’s new digs was only 50 feet away next door. But Bon Jovi can have the shiny new New Meadowlands Stadium. I prefer old, weathered, and worn in any day.
Bruce Springsteen T-Shirts
You can visit Bruce Springsteen’s official online store and grab these tees while they are still available! (www.brucespringsteen.net)

NJ T-Shirt Tuesday 14: The New Jersey Giants

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Courtesy of XL3 Vintage Clothing

Last night the New York Giants won their first pre-season game against the Carolina Panthers at Giants Stadium. Depression sets in every time I watch a Giants game and I’m forced to fixate on that silly “NY” logo on the players’ helmets. Growing up in the ’80s, the Giants helmets simply read “GIANTS.” It was sleek and concentrated on the team name without any implication of geographical ownership. It’s a simple fact of life that the Giants will never change their name to the NY/NJ Giants, regardless of the fact that everyone in the country knows that their official headquarters, training facility, and home stadium are in East Rutherford, New Jersey. In a non-sports related argument, there’s no reason why a New York/New Jersey feud should even exist since their relationship is symbiotic. There’s no way the Giants would even exist without New Jersey, and their new stadium affirms that they’ll be sticking around for quite a long time.

During the ’80s and ’90s (and I’m sure it’s probably still happening) there were many bootleg “New Jersey Giants” shirts printed up. If you bought or wore one of these throughout the years, your fake boobs or juiced pecs were clinging to a lie. Wearing a shirt or an illegally created jersey that purported the Giants to be a New Jersey team was like falling in love with a girl who was already married. It’s a fruitless affair. New Jersey doesn’t want the Giants to be ours exclusively, we’re happy sharing Big Blue, but hell, we just want some credit! What’s the sense of having a fierce custody battle when we know that the Giants have lived in the swamps of New Jersey since ’76? I wonder how it would pan out if the Boston Red Sox stadium was actually in Rhode Island? The Rhode Island Red Sox has a better ring to it…and so does the Jersey Giants!!!

This shirt is a small, and it’s from the ’80s when everyone was the size of Napoleon, so I’d bet it’s only going to fit small children and girls without much in the boob department. Regardless, this sporty slice of retro heaven is ideal for those who love the G-Men, AND New Jersey!

To check out the listing click here: XL3VintageClothing.net

NJ T-Shirt Tuesday 13: Bon Jovi at Giants Stadium 1989

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No joke: This shirt was $199 bucks on eBay. The auction offered free shipping though, as if that was any incentive to buy a 20 year old, used t-shirt.

Internet, oh Internet, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways! 1) you make it easier to pay my bills 2) you provide me with an occasionally biased, poorly edited, publicly written encyclopedia that has become the Britannica of the modern age. 3) you’ve made it so simple to find pornography at little or no cost to millions of men around the world (and excessively horny women…you know who you are!) 4) Where would we be without social networking sites? Actually speaking to each other on the phone, or better yet interacting with someone IN PERSON? OK, so the Internet is a blessing, but it’s also a curse because now we rely on it like a drug.

Above all of the aforementioned reasons why I love the Internet, the reason I love most is that we can find cool shit that isn’t for sale in any store, not even a thrift store or a flea market. You see, there are just some things that no one in their right mind would actually sell to you in person. That is where the Internet comes in. Places like eBay, Craigslist, and other auction sites have afforded us the opportunity to buy entire series bootlegs of TV shows that will never have even a minute chance of getting an official release. The Internet, and Google has opened up doors for us that lead to toys from our childhood that mysteriously disappeared from our den when we were young, only for us to find out that our father’s got rid of them so we can grow up and become men. You want Castle Grayskull mint in box? eBay! How the f-ck does someone still have that, you ask? Well, I have no idea because I ask myself that same question.

Where do our old hand-me-downs wind up? Remember that Kiss Animalize tour shirt you wore constantly back in ’84? Well, you can buy it on eBay for upwards of $200! Who would spend that kind of scratch on an old ratty, smelly, shirt that’s probably been soaked in someone elses beer puke once or twice? There’s someone out there who will, I guarantee it! Would you spend it on that Bon Jovi t-shirt that you had from their homecoming concert at Giants Stadium back in June of ’89? Even if it was a special shirt produced and sold that night only?

Even at their height of success, Bon Jovi was never known to have the best concert t-shirts. Proving that statement is the Jovi tee pictured above, created for their ’89 concert in East Rutherford. The graphic on the front of the shirt begs to be discussed. The first noticeable flaw is that Jon Bon Jovi is clearly not “Giant-Man: the all Mighty and Powerful Rock God.” It’s not humanly possible that all 5 foot 5 of Jon Francis could dwarf Giants Stadium! C’mon people! Whoever drew this must’ve been mistakenly drawing Jon Mikl Thor in Rock and Roll Nightmare, because Jon Bon Jovi is not that Herculean. I also had no idea Jon was the Intercontinental Champion, either that or he’s wearing a gold encrusted chastity belt. Dear Jon Bon Jovi, The Sexy Armpit wishes you good luck in defending rock and roll in East Rutherford, New Jersey from all the evil creatures attempting to stop you from playing your concert.

For more vintage, overpriced concert tees check out Power Seller “stormcrow-vintage.”

The Atlantic City Food & Wine Festival

Atlantic City Food & Wine Festival 2009

Do you enjoy watching Guy Fieri, Tom Colicchio, and Ingrid Hoffman? Then you should have been at the Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival that took place all weekend at Harrah’s, Bally’s, Showboat, and Caesar’s. If you couldn’t make it, The Sexy Armpit was there to experience it for you. Oh and some guy named Emeril Lagasse was there too. Now, I’m no Tommy Salami (he’s my Guy Fieri), but allow me to recount the trip, from breakfast through dinner.

Our attempt at a nights sleep at Harrah’s was interrupted by some maniac screaming at his girlfriend in a nearby room at 2 a.m and trying to break a door down, while we were also graced by having a troop of guidos staying in the connecting room who never learned how to speak at normal decibel levels. By some miracle, my girlfriend and I did manage to get some rest in between all the Riff Raff. If only Riff Raff was in an adjacent room maybe we’d actually be invited to get up in the middle of the night to do the time warp with him again.

I was opposed to eating breakfast because I knew we’d be in for a day of engorging ourselves with a variety of different kinds of food and liquor. My girlfriend convinced me that we would need some breakfast because we wouldn’t be eating for a while. I caved in. We went downstairs to the Sack O’ Subs in Harrah’s and placed our order for breakfast. I was excited to find out that they offer wheat wraps as an alternative to regular sub rolls. It’s become a standing joke with my friends at work that I ask if they have “wheat wraps,” everywhere we go, as in “Yo, you got wheat wraps?” in my best, albeit unintentional, Nick Moore from Family Ties impression. “Ay, yo Mallory, you got some wheat wraps?” Roasted peppers and eggs on a wheat wrap was my breakfast of choice and damn it was delicious. It was cooked up perfectly, and I dabbed on what tasted like hot pepper relish that was in little clear containers stacked by the pickup counter. Sack O’Subs’ lineage can be traced back to the legendary White House Sub Shop in A.C which opened in 1947.

It was on to Bally’s where Sunday’s chapter of the Food and Wine Festival was happening. The line to get in was intimidating at first, but it went quickly. Before we knew it we had our wristbands and wine glasses and we were about to wreck house. An interesting tidbit about me is that when I go into these trade show type events, I tend to pretend that I’m in a first person shooter. I want to annihilate each table and leave dust in my path. I have no time for dilly dallying. If mofos want to linger around and ask silly questions then I’m taking my sample and moving on! To make the whole event go quicker, why don’t they just sit me down somewhere and bring me all the samples? That would be a cool overload, which is rare.

From Pinot Noir samples to Magic Hat brews, I downed it. I don’t even drink that much, but we were there and it was free. As I walked through the aisles I wondered how it was possible that people weren’t aware of some of these brands. For instance, does Blue Moon beer really need to advertise and give out free samples? It doesn’t seem like they’re hurting considering every girl and every girly man I know LOVES sipping it. To me, I don’t care if your drinking gourmet beer, strawberry flavored beer, milk stout, or Mr. Fancy Pants Oatmeal Brew…it’s still f–king beer. Beer’s been around for an eon without having all these exotic additives, so let’s cut the crap OK? Of course, I’m joking if you love Blue Moon, you’re NOT a girly man, but on the other hand, I may very well be. Perhaps the best drink I tasted all day was a Pina Colada from Bally’s Bikini Beach bar which was graciously served to me by a young girl in a teenie weenie bikini. Those are the best kind. It was possibly the greatest Pina Colada I’ve ever had.

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As for the actual food, there were only a few products that left a big impression on me. All you need to do to get my attention is put “Jersey” in your ad or sign and I’ll stop in my tracks and squint my eyes like Batman does in the intro to Batman the Animated Series after targeting some thugs. And coincidentally, “weed” is also a grabber, so when I saw the sign that said “Get Your WEED at the Jersey Shore” I naturally stopped in my tracks for a taste test of southern style Jeremiah Weed’s Flavored Iced Tea Vodka on the rocks (nothin’ to do with the pigtailed cowgirl with the bare midriff, of course). The flavor I tasted combined two of my favorite drinks, Iced Tea and Bourbon. Scarily easy to drink, it’ll probably sneak up on you and make you sick without even realizing it because it tastes so good. Go easy on it!

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The award for best chili ever goes to Pistol Pete’s Steakhouse and Saloon in Pleasantville, NJ. I gulped down a sample cup of chili that the guys at the their table handed to me, and I was immediately sold. Just by that tiny portion I was able to savor the chunkiness and intense flavors their Chili had. Literally amazing. The next time I’m in A.C, that’s where I’m going for dinner.

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Unfortunately we weren’t able to get into the show Guy Fieri was running, but we were able to sit in on Aaron Song’s demo. I’m like a 5 year old, aside from cartoons and pro wrestling, I actually don’t watch much TV, so I had no idea who “The Asian Guy” from Hell’s Kitchen was. Sweating profusely, Song was entertaining as he cooked, when he wasn’t being buried by fellow chef Guy Mitchell who was clearly trying to live out his dreams of being the next David Letterman. Regardless of his culinary accomplishments, Mitchell had no business with a microphone, especially considering the extremely racist Chinese and Japanese jabs he continuously took at Song (he didn’t even know the difference between Chinese and Japanese). Damn Emeril for making these cooks think they’re all entertaining! This wacky chef routine is getting old! Next thing you know we’ll be heading to the Stress Factory where they feature Stand-Up Chefs. Instead of one liners, he’ll throw appetizers at you. In between his shtick, Song whipped up macadamia encrusted scallops drizzled with wasabi verblanc sauce and asparagus rolled in Italian pancetta. Champagne was also handed out like it was gatorade on the sidelines of a New York Giants game.

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Ketchup has always been my favorite condiment, even to the extent of finding it in my stocking on Christmas morning, but barbecue sauce is in my top 3. You can’t really lose when it comes to barbecue sauce because they all have strong points. There aren’t many BAD barbecue sauces out there, some are serviceable and do the trick, while others bowl your mouth over and make you want to jump into the bottle and bathe in the sauce. Upon sampling two pieces of meat dunked in the sweet and spicy versions of Funni Bonz barbecue sauce, it made me want to grab a basting brush and start lathering myself up with it. The only thing that comes close to comparing the feeling I got when I came in contact with this sauce is when Saul first introduces Dale to the Pineapple Express weed in Pineapple Express. Saul hands Dale the bag of bud and tells him to smell it:

DALE: Ohhhhh!
SAUL: what do you want to bathe in it?
DALE: I just want to live in here
SAUL: Yes, you want to BE it?
DALE: Oh my God! I just want to shove it up my nose and have that smell all day! That’s amazing…
SAUL: Shove it anywhere you’d like.

Later, after trudging through torrential downpours on our drive home, we dunked some delicious breaded chicken in both the spicy and sweet sauces that I bought. I was literally licking the spoon as if we had just made chocolate chip cookies. Do your damndest to get your hands on several jars of Funni Bonz BBQ sauce! The company was founded by 2 best friends from New Jersey. For more visit http://www.blogger.com/www.funnibonz.com or http://funnibonz.blogspot.com/

I left this event with one complaint. If you’re an exhibitor or salesman for a company at this festival, you need to step up your game. When it comes to food and alcohol, you need to be smooth. People want free stuff when they go to these events, not to be given the hard sell. When they get samples and free swag, they’re more apt to recommend your product to friends. So if I hear you utter the phrase “You want to buy some?” it’s probable that I won’t. I want to hear information as to why I want your product in or around my mouth. Fill my ear with the subtle nuances that make your product better than its competitors. Does it have natural ingredients? Damn, do I have to do your jobs for ya?

The Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival has been going on since 2007, and judging by this years expansive event, it will only get bigger. If you find yourself watching Food Network constantly and you have an appreciation for fine cuisine and liquor, then make it a point to be a part of it next year!

The Sexy Armpit is Brought To You By The Number 11

What’s your favorite number? Do you even have a favorite number? Is it completely lame to have a favorite number? Does this topic even garner enough attention to require a full post devoted to it? I’m sure it will once I tell you that the number 11 has been exiled. I know what your thinking right now. “C’mon Jay, are you that fresh out of ideas that you couldn’t come up with your usual geeky or perverse material?” The survey says: We’ll have plenty of time for the usual stuff, but for now keep in mind how much we revered numbers back in our Sesame Street days:

I bet the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the number “11” is the terrorist attacks of 9/11/01. Not only was the date 9/11 but one of the hijacked planes was American Airlines flight 11. On the anniversary of 9/11 it’s certainly not a proper time to be discussing vulgar tirades in movies, why I want to bang Janine Melnitz, and other useless crap that makes me such a geek. I’d like to get serious for a moment and recognize the number 11 for all its positive accomplishments. The number 11 has held much significance in my life and with that kind of service I hate to see it being cast out as a tragic, unlucky number. As you’ll read in this article 11 is not all bad, and it sure as hell isn’t the loneliest number.

You’ll hear a lot of people say their lucky number is 7. Not only do 7 and 11 share the moniker of a famous convenience store but they also have other similarities. Even though the attack on Pearl Harbor happened on 12/7/41, you don’t see people treating the number 7 like Dr. Richard Kimble, do you? It’s number prejudice! 11/11 is veterans day and it symbolized the end of WW1. So next time you roll up to get a Big Gulp or a Slurpee, take a moment to contemplate the long and storied relationship of numbers 7 and 11.

The world of rock music also has several ties to the number 11. Perhaps the most well known is Spinal Tap who can turn their amps “up to 11” even though others only go to 10. Since then, “Turn it up to 11” has become a rock cliché. My birthday falls on 3/11 and an easy way to get people to remember it is to think of the band 311. They got their name from an indecent exposure ticket issued by the Omaha Police Department which had the code 3.11 on it. Motley Crue founder and rock icon Nikki Sixx heads up Eleven Seven Music, (another instance of the classic 7-11 pairing) a record label that features Crue, Buckcherry, and Marion Raven. On their album Move Along, The All American Rejects feature a song titled 11:11. At some point I’m sure you’ve heard someone (usually a girl) say “it’s 11:11 make a wish.” Then you went on to wish for one night alone with Angelina Jolie instead of the sloppy mess who told you to make the wish.

Recently, after I told my boss that there are all these coincidences regarding my favorite number he immediately thought of 9/11. “You need to change that number” he warned me. I’m not known to be superstitious or reject honest, innocent numerals so I will continue praising the awesome number 11. Through the years of having anniversaries on the date and the number 11 etched on my basketball and track jerseys how can I abandon it now? You expect me to wrap the number in bloody towels and throw it in the trash? No way! I’m hoping it will help me out since I’m off to Las Vegas in a couple of days and 11 is no stranger to sin city. In Blackjack, the ace can be counted as 1 or 11, whichever benefits the player. Also, the 1960 heist film Oceans 11 featuring the Rat Pack and it’s 2001 remake are both considered to be 2 of the best Vegas films of all time. Will 11 be my lucky number in Vegas?

Wikipedia has an exhaustive entry on the meaning of the number 11 and its references in pop culture. Here are a few that are included in that entry and some others as well:

– There’s eleven players per team on the field during an NFL football game. The New York Giants are the only team to retire a #11 jersey.

– The first manned spacecraft to land on the moon was Apollo 11

– The average adult male heart weighs 11 ounces

– The eleventh hour is known as a time of urgency

Ben Hur, Titanic, and Lord of the Rings have each won 11 Academy Awards.

– Mash and Cheers both ran for 11 seasons

**During an “11” Google search I found a page that is just asinine. The site is called “Joy Greetings” but features a picture of the twin towers ablaze. It lists all the numeral coincidences surrounding 9/11. This struck me as ridiculous since there’s no “joy” to be had when thinking of that day and how it relates to being a “greeting” is beyond me. Somewhere the person that runs that site is raking in a ton of money from traffic revenue.