Aspyr Adrenaline Sports Pack for the Mac

Adrenaline

Holy crap!!! Did you watch the X-Games? Man, they were doing some sick stuff. Makes me want to do some xtreme sports, except I’m afraid of getting hurt. Trying to grind down a handrail on a skateboard could be a testicle-crushing experience or I could drown trying to surf ten-foot waves.

Growing up I used to be big on jumping ramps with my BMX bike. (Note: Never jump with rubber slippers. You might end up with scars on the top of your feet.) I tried to jump as high as I could and on occasion take a foot or arm off. I remember this one jump when I tried to do a no-footer. As I gained altitude, I quickly pulled my feet off of the pedals and spread them outward. Unfortunately, as I brought my feet back, I missed the pedals and my love nuggets got crushed. Fortunately, for my future children, every thing was all right.

Thank gonads, for the Adrenaline Sports Pack (ASP) by Aspyr, which allows me to participate in xtreme sports from the comfort and safety of my computer. The ASP consists of three best-selling games: Tony Hawk Pro Skater 4, Kelly Slater’s Pro Surfer, and Wakeboarding Unleashed Featuring Shaun Murray. Individually, each game sells for $20-$30, however the ASP costs only $19.99 for the full versions of each game. Although I purchased the Mac version, there’s also a Windows version available.

Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4 is by far the best game out of the three. I guess when you’re up to the fourth game in the series you’re going to know what you’re doing. It can be a very frustrating game if you play in the career mode, because some of the goals seem almost impossible.

As for Kelly Slater’s Pro Surfer and Wakeboarding Unleashed…Um…I didn’t really get to play with them yet because I’m still trying to beat Pro Skater 4 and I guess that’s why I said it’s by far the best game out of the three. It really is a frustrating game. I would’ve waited to write this review until I spent some significant time with all three games, but I really, really, really needed a review for today and this was the only one closest to being done. Also I don’t play a new game until I beat the game I’m playing.

One thing to note about the ASP is the high system requirements for Macs, which consist of at least a 733 Mhz G4/G5 processor with 256MB of RAM and 32MB of Video RAM. For Windows, you’re going to need at least an 800Mhz Pentium 3 with 256MB of RAM and 32MB of Video RAM, which seems pretty modest.

Also to make the game easier, it would be wise to purchase a game controller. For my Mac, I bought a $13 USB to Playstation adapter from a national electronics store chain that uses B-List celebrities in their commercials and a $10 Playstation 2 controller from a national computer store chain that’s slowly moving away from computers to be more like its competitors.

If you’re looking for some xtreme action without the possibility of broken bones or you wrapped around a park bench, try the Adrenaline Sports Pack.

But then again a wise man once said, “Pain heals, chicks dig scars, and glory lasts forever.”


Item: Aspyr Adrenaline Sports Pack for the Mac
Purchase Price: $19.99
Rating: 4 out of 5
Pros: Great price for all three games. Ability to experience xtreme sports without the hassles of emergency rooms and doctors. Tony Hawk Pro Skater 4 is an xtremely fun game and as for the others, maybe I’ll let you know later.
Cons: High Mac system requirements. You can control games with your keyboard, but buying a controller would make it easier.

REVIEW: Salt and Pepper Pringles Potato Chips

Salt and Pepper Pringles

A couple months ago, I tried the limited edition Ketchup Pringles, which I purchased from the national, small-business destroying superstore behemoth I sometimes shop at. I really enjoyed them, although this is from someone who thinks ketchup goes great with anything.

While watching a Pimp My Ride marathon and mowing down the can of Ketchup Pringles in one sitting, I wondered if Pringles was going to come out other limited flavors. Fast-forward a few months and on the shelf at the national grocery store chain I shop at, I discovered Salt and Pepper Pringles.

To describe the experience of eating Salt and Pepper Pringles, I have decided to express it in rhyme. Or to be more exact, take someone else’s rhymes, change a few words, and make them my own rhymes.

So I give you Salt ‘n Pepa’s “Push It,” with a few of my changes in the lyrics.


S-S-Salt and Pepa Pringles are here and it’s in effect.
Want you to try it babe,
Tryin’ it by day then at night you’ll have some regret.
C’mon Pringle, you sure like to show that you know,
how to make messed up chips to eat during a TV show.

Now salt and pepa it

Ah, salt it – salt it good
Ah, pepa it – pepa it real good
Ah, salt it – salt it good
Ah, pepa it – p-pepa it real good

Hey!
Eeew!
Salt and pepa it good!

Oooh, baby, baby.
Baby, baby.
Oooh, baby, baby.
Baby, baby.

Yo, yo, yo, yo, baby-pop.
Yeah, you come here, take way these chips.
Better make it fast or else I’m gonna get pissed.
Can’t you taste too much salt and pepa like I wish you would?
Now salt and pepa it.

Salt it good.
P-pepa it real good.

Item: Salt and Pepper Pringles Potato Chips
Purchase Price: $1.50 (on sale)
Rating: 2 out of 10
Pros: Got to be “Weird Al” Yankovic for a few minutes.
Cons: Too much salt. Too much pepper. Would you like some potato chips with your salt and pepper?

XtremeMac SportsWrap iPod Armband

SportsWrap

You want a piece of me? Do YOU want a piece of ME?

Bring it on, baby! I’ll take you on with my huge guns? Take a gander at one of my 11-inch pythons in the picture. Uh huh!

I know you’re scared now! Take a look at that picture again. The Velcro on my XtremeMac SportsWrap iPod Armband is barely holding together because of my bulging biceps.

Don’t let the paleness fool you. My guns are powerful weapons and the SportsWrap looks damn good on either one of them. I used to run with my iPod in the back pocket of my shorts, but because of my muscular buttocks it would skip every so often, so I got the SportWrap, which puts my iPod in an ideal place to minimize vibration and shock. After a month of running with it, I haven’t had one skip yet.

The SportsWrap is made out of moisture-resistant neoprene, so the sweat from my huge arms while running won’t soak my iPod. It also has a clear mylar cover which protects my iPod and allows me to control it. There are headphone holes on both the top and bottom of the SportsWrap, which allows me to use my iPod in either vertical orientation. There’s a convenient place for earbud cord storage and in case my arms get even bigger, the SportsWrap comes with an extension strap.

It’s simple to slide the iPod in and out of the case, which was made for third-generation iPods. I don’t know if they work well with the fourth-generation iPods, although they are about the same size. If you have a silicone case, like the Jam Jacket, you’re going to have to take your iPod out of it, before you slip it in the SportsWrap.

Despite my huge arms, the Velcro strap holds well. I haven’t had it slip down my arm at all.

The only problem I had with the SportsWrap was the fact that the headphone holes were too small. Or maybe they look small because I’m looking at them next to my huge biceps. These small holes didn’t allow my headphone plug to be fully plugged into my iPod. Eventually, using my huge, muscular arms and a pair of scissors, I made the one of the headphone holes big enough.

After doing research on the various armbands cases for the iPod, I decided to purchase the XtremeMac SportsWrap because it fully encloses the iPod and it didn’t look as bulky as other cases. My purchase was a good one. Despite the headphone hole problem, it has worked very well for me. I would definitely recommend it to someone who is looking for an iPod armband case to go running, biking, or working out with.

Oh yeah, baby! Feel the burn!

Update: Ever since I washed the SportsWrap in a washing machine (letting it air dry), slight condensation consistently forms on the bottom back of my iPod after I finish a run. I don’t know if in the long term it will cause a problem to my iPod.


Item: XtremeMac SportsWrap iPod Armband
Purchase Price: $27.00 (on eBay)
Rating: 4 out of 5
Pros: Encloses iPod. Moisture-resistant neoprene. Mylar cover allows ability to control iPod. Looks good on my huge arms.
Cons: Headphone holes are waaay to small for headphone plugs, unless you modify them.

REVIEW: S’mores Pop-Tarts

Smores Pop Tarts

I have a new guilty pleasure and I owe it all to someone who is hairy than I am.

Thanks to the Pop-Tarts Yeti (watch their commercials or visit their website and you’ll understand) I currently have an addiction to FROZEN Pop-Tarts. Who would have thought sticking Pop-Tarts in the freezer would make them…Um…Slightly better?

When I mean “slightly better,” I mean they’re cold, because anything cold tastes much better in this summer heat.

The instructions on the box say you should put them in your freezer for at least 20 minutes. However, I found out that either 20 minutes is too short of a time or my one-year old freezer sucks, because my frozen Pop-Tarts were hardly frozen. I recommend leaving them in for at least two hours.

What the freezing does is make the Pop-Tarts chewy, cold, and that’s about it. However, that’s good enough for me because in three days, I ate eight frozen S’mores Pop-Tarts. That approximately averages to too many per day.

I can’t help it though. Those S’mores Pop-Tarts were downright good. They tasted like s’mores, with its chocolate/marshmallow filling and graham cracker frosting. It’s a wonderful way to enjoy s’mores without the gooey mess and the hassles of building a campfire, which is hard to do in the middle of a concrete jungle and my property manager doesn’t allow open fires on the premises.

Actually, this was supposed to be a review on the new Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Pop-Tarts, but the national grocery store chain I shop at didn’t have any. Instead, I had to settle for whatever they had (i.e. S’mores Pop-Tarts), which turns out wasn’t a bad thing to settle for. It was like I really wanted to go out on a date with Angelina Jolie, but I ended up going out with Lindsay Lohan instead. Not really what I wanted, but delicious nonetheless. (Wait, I can say that? Lindsay Lohan is 18 years old, right? I don’t want to seem like some pedophile creep. She’s eighteen? Good.)

To be honest, it’s been awhile since I’ve had Pop-Tarts. The last time I had them was when the craziest flavor was Brown Sugar Cinnamon and the rest of their offerings were fruit flavored. Now they’ve got all these crazy concoctions that sound more like flavors of ice cream than flavors of Pop-Tarts and my sweet tooth thanks them for it.

For now, I think these S’more Pop-Tarts are the best tasting Pop-Tarts I’ve ever had…Frozen. Unfortunately, during my frozen S’mores Pop-Tarts addiction, I forgot to try toasting them.

Damn you Pop-Tarts Yeti!!!

Item: Frozen S’mores Pop-Tarts
Purchase Price: $1.69 (on sale)
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Cool, chewy goodness. Just like real s’mores, without the mess, burnt tongues, and possible forest fires.
Cons: Must wait for freezing. Fricking store didn’t have Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Pop-Tarts!!!

Nike IMPAX Running Shoes

Nike Impax

I needed new running shoes because my current fleet of running shoes, which consists of three pairs of two-year old Asics, are getting up there in mileage. So who do I turn to when it comes to the dire matters of athletic shoes?

My roommate, of course!

Why him?

First off, he owns more pairs of athletic shoes than you and I have fingers and toes. Secondly, he works for a national athletic shoe store chain, so it’s his business to know shoes and to use his employee discount to create a shoe collection that equals those you see on MTV Cribs.

I told him I wanted something like my current pair of running shoes. He recommended the brand new Nike IMPAX shoe, because they were just like me, good looking and cheap.

He wasn’t kidding, at $75 a pair, these kicks are very inexpensive. They also look good, especially the metallic silver/black/red/white ones I purchased. But I didn’t buy them just for their looks, I really wanted to know how they feel on a run.

These shoes are similar to the Nike Shox series in that they provide excellent cushioning, with its innovative shock-absorbing system.

After putting them on, one of the first things I noticed about the Nike IMPAX is how light they are. Each shoe weighs a little over 11 ounces, which can mean a lot during a three-mile run. Of course, one of the bad things about light shoes is the fact they won’t have much of an effect if you throw them at something or someone. Remember force equals mass times acceleration (f=m*a). So if you ever need to throw your shoes at something or someone, make sure they’re Timberland boots.

After three days of running in these shoes, I like the feel of them. With other shoes, my body has had to get used to them, which always involves shin splints. However, with the Nike IMPAX, I was surprised I didn’t have this problem.

One problem I did face was trying to keep them clean. With my old shoes, I didn’t care what I stepped in: mud, puddles, or someone’s flower garden. The Nike IMPAX are such good-looking shoes that I couldn’t imagine staining them with grass or mud. Strictly sidewalks and asphalt for now.

Another thing I noticed about these shoes is that they attract the attention of married, middle-aged women for some reason.

How do I know this?

When I walked into my client’s offices with them on, two married middle-aged women, instead of saying hello, instantly commented on how shiny my shoes were. As you can see from the picture, they are shiny shoes.

As a young, single man, I have no desire to attract the attention married, middle-aged women. Why can’t these shoes attract young, single women? Damn, to be cursed with these shoes.

Anyway, if you’re a casual runner and are looking for a new pair of inexpensive running kicks, might I recommend the Nike IMPAX. They’re one of the best running shoes I’ve used in a long time. (However, according to my roommate, if your feet tend to pronate or if you have wide feet, these shoes might not be the best for you.)


Item: Nike Impax Running Shoes
Purchase Price: $75.00
Rating: 5 out of 5
Pros: Surprisingly inexpensive. Very light. Awesome cushioning.
Cons: Attracts married, middle-aged women, instead of single, young women. Inability to cause any damage when thrown at something.