NCAA Basketball Tournament of Death [ Round Three ]

I somehow made it to Round  Three without any major casualties.  At the end of the second round, all my FINAL FOUR picks were still alive.  But Round Three is like the third quarter of a San Antonio Spurs or a Texas A&M football game.  It always seems the team is running out of steam and it ends up being the worst of their quarters.  Since I'm a fan of both of those teams (living in San Antonio and going to Texas A&M), I knew this concern was valid.

So to recap my system for picking teams.

  1. Get asked by your college buddies to join in.
  2. Not wanting to seems like you're only major events in the house is when a new episode of Phineas and Ferb comes on.
  3. Making your picks based on having five minutes to get to work.
  4. Don't put money on it.
With that here's the breakdowns.

I got both my picks for MIDWEST BRACKET CORRECT.  Somehow I've got this one mostly right each round.  I really wanted Louisville to lose this round even though I picked them.  The main reason is that is the ream most of my buds picked to win the whole thing. They won though and I still got the points.

Syracuse is my pick to win the whole thing.  They win as did Marquette.  Got them both right on this one too. My buddy Jeff picked Indiana but their loss means he's out.

My SOUTH BRACKET just needed for Michigan to win.  They upset Kansas, which upset my buddy Matt whose whole set of brackets were busted with their loss.

 My WEST BRACKET was a different story.  I was already almost halfway busted with Kansas State's loss in the first round.  I just needed Arizona to win to keep all my FINAL FOUR teams still alive. 

They failed to win which means my WEST BRACKET is ...

I'm honestly surprised I lasted this long.  Two of my buds are out (if by out you mean the team they picked to win is out), the rest of them have Louisville to win.  I'm the only one to have Syracuse to win.  I have Louisville to get knocked out by Duke in the next round.  Let's hope that happens.

After Round Three:
Of the six games I was eligible to pick from, I got five of them correct.

I have 570 ESPN Basketball Tourny Thing Points ( + 200 from round one )
Ranked 1,754,577 out of 6,973,738,933 in the world (I'm not sure if they're all playing though)  ( + 4,772,824 in the rankings )

I am currently third in my group and in unfamiliar territory.

How'd your brackets do?

Welcome to Bracketshire.


NCAA Basketball Tournament of Death [ Round Two ]

I decided to fake it that I actually watch any type of televised sports by participating in a NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament Bracket Challenge or whatever it's called.  I really had no clue on who to pick other than who was already ranked and who I remember playing on the Playstation Uno.

Round one went pretty well by my standard.  More than half of the teams I picked to win actually advanced.

My West Bracket was halfway killed when Kansas State lost in the first round.  Since I have Arizona making it to the FINAL FOUR, I needed them to win.  They did and my West Bracket is still alive.

My South Bracket was similar to my West.  I only needed Michigan to win, but with Kansas' win as well it gave me extra points in my total score.

My East Bracket got me excited.  The three winners I had left all advanced.  Indiana, Syracuse and Marquette all picked up the "W" to help me go up in the rankings.

Louisville, Michigan St and Duke all won their respective games and made my Midwest Bracket finish strong.  While it would have been nice if Saint Louis won as well to give me four wins in this bracket, three out of the four picked is pretty awesome I think.

After Round Two:
Of the 19 Picks I got correct in Round One, I only had 11 games to pay attention to.
Of the 11, I got 9 correct and 2 incorrect.

I have 370 ESPN Basketball Tourny Thing Points ( + 180 from round one )
Ranked 6,527,401 out of 6,973,738,933 in the world (I'm not sure if they're all playing though)  ( + 444,409 in the rankings )

I'm currently in last place in my group.  Mainly because we all picked the same teams to win and I was already 6th place after last round, so everyone moved up.

The good news for me is that none of my brackets are busted just yet.  I have a few more days of victory until The Sweet Sixteen round.

How'd your brackets do?

Welcome to Bracketshire.


NCAA Basketball Tournament of Death [ Round One ]

Sometimes I'm just a glutton for punishment.  Maybe it's just the need to be a part of things that aren't related to shows on Nickelodeon or the Disney Channel.  Yet, after a devastating attempt a couple years ago to be a part of the NCAA Basketball Bracket Tournament Challenge Thing or whatever it's called, I accepted a friends invitation to participate this year.

Eric, why would you even bother?  You know you're going to fail horribly!

I know. I know.  But self deprecating blog posts are awesome.

Eric, what was your method at choosing your brackets?

It's simple.  Forget you signed on to play until the morning the NCAA Basketball Bracket Tournament Challenge Thing or whatever it's called starts. Get to work 10 minutes early and make your picks based on names you recognize. Then push Submit.

No research? No asking your friends?  That hasn't really worked for you in the past few seasons of Fantasy Football.

Again, self deprecating blog posts about how you suck at sports are awesome.

Here are my brackets.

At the end of the first day of playing round one.  I think I had okay results.  But we weren't done with the first round.  So at the end of round one on Friday night, here were my results.

Yellow equals who I picked to win.  If they are yellow in the next round, they won.  If they are redish orange (or is it orange red), that team lost.

I don't think I did too bad.  5 out of 8 isn't horrible.  I tried going for the underdog on a few of them and it didn't really work out.  Everyone I have advancing to the sweet sixteen won at least.

The big thing here was that Kansas State crapped out.  While this bracket wasn't busted by it, I did have them advancing to the Elite Eight.  Five out of eight of my picks made it to the next round.  For this bracket not to be a bust, Arizona will have to win in the next round.

Colorado losing here kind of hurt me.  I picked them as underdogs really to go to the Sweet Sixteen.  Hopefully Marquette makes it through the next round.  The running theme of 5 out of 8 lives on.

Georgetown here messed it up. I'm pretty sure for for everyone else on the planet too.  I had them going to the Elite Eight.  While I didn't have UCLA going past Georgetown in the Sweet Sixteen, I needed them to win to make it  a perfect five for eight in each division.
While it's obvious I need both Kansas and Michigan, I would like them both to win to keep this bracket alive for another round.

All of my picks for the Final Four survived this round.

Right now, I'm pretty excited I did this well.  Sure my college buddies are like, dude you're in sixth place out of seven.  

Yeah, but at least I'm not seventh.

After Round One:
19 out of 32 Picks Correct
13 out of 32 Picks Incorrect

I have 190 ESPN Basketball Tourny Thing Points
Ranked 6,527,401 out of 6,973,738,933 in the world (I'm not sure if they're all playing though).

How'd your brackets do?

Welcome to Bracketshire.


The One About How Babies Make Her Sick [ Texts From Kristie ]

It's that time again for everyone (well mine anyways) favorite bit about my wife and her texts.

Welcome to Boltonshire


Doggie Village [ Loreli's Diary ]

Well the other day we got Loreli a diary.  Apparently it was Nana who told her she needed one.  She started writing in it and taunted me there was something about me in there.  Things got a little out of control and I planted the diary where it would be assumed our dog Rosco chewed it up.

Well she found it, blamed him and because I had promised I would take him to a trainer if he chewed up anything again.  I had too.  

Wanting to see if she was on to me, last night I pulled it out from under her pillow and read it again.

Whew. Off the hook. Well kinda.  I sort of exaggerated what "Doggie Villiage" was.  I said it was a resort out in the Hill Country for young dogs who need to learn how to control themselves.  

I actually only drove to Whataburger down the street and paid Pete, the guy who sits in the grass near Whataburger all the time, thirty bucks and a chocolate shake to watch Rosco for a week.

I keep piling on the lies.  I feel like Walter White in Breaking Bad.

I sure hope my pregnant wife doesn't get a craving for chocolate shakes and french fries in the next week.

Welcome to Boltonshire.


Why We Crop Our Photos [ Contest / Giveaway ]

I'm going to let you know a secret.  Whenever you see a picture of the residents of Boltonshire in the shire itself, there's a lot of effort that goes into the photo.  Sure a lot of them may look like them are candid and snapped during the moment, but more than likely it was probably the sixth or seventh picture taken.  Then even when it's the sixth of seventh picture, there's a lot of cropping going on. 

The cropping is done so you can't see the mess in the background.

Sometimes the mess can be so bad and we need to take a picture of how absolutely adorable our kid is and we NEED TO SHOW THE WORLD via Facebook, we have to take a picture from the floor up.  What happens then is the kid looks like they're about to do battle with the Power Rangers.

Now we don't want the mess there, and our kids are able to pick up after themselves.  It's just when you have five kids you have seven people's worth of stuff.

Like the laundry.

My goodness, the laundry.

How I wish we lived in ancient Rome and we just wore our bed sheets.

So until I can perfect group time travel back to robe wearing Rome, the house will have some form of mess.

It's probably why My Dirty Jobs contacted me to help them in promoting their latest contest. 

The following is from their contest promotional material

-Send them a photo of your Mess Master's best work and you could win a year's professional maid service from Molly Maid and My Dirty Jobs-
NEW YORK, Feb. 21, 2013 – My Dirty Jobs, the company that makes cleaning products formulated to handle the dirtiest jobs, is launching a nationwide search for America's top 'Mess Masters.'  Send them a photo of the messiest mess your own Mess Master makes and if your photo is selected you could win a full year's professional maid service from Molly Maid, one of the country's top-rated professional home cleaning service companies.
Available at Walmart, Lowe's, and Albertsons Market stores across the country, Dirty Jobs broad portfolio of cleaning products are among the strongest and most advanced household cleaning products available anywhere.  They are the ideal cleaner-uppers for everyone's own Mess Master.

Qualifying as the biggest Mess Master requires no special training, just the ability to create the messiest mess.  Accepted entries can include kids and/or pets.  They just need to make a dirty mess and you provide the photographic proof of their best mess.

The contest will run for eleven weeks from February 21 through May 9, 2013.  Grand Prize winner will be announced on or about Mother's Day, May 12, 2013.  It's easy and simple to get in on all the fun.  Just visitwww.mydirtyjobs/messmasters to enter your own favorite Mess Master.  

Send them your best Mess Master photo and you will be entered and eligible to win one of the following great prizes:

Grand Prize Winner - Molly Maid Cleaning Service for 1 year
First runner Up - $500 Gift Card
Second Runner Up - $250 Gift Card
Eleven Weekly Prize Winners will win a $100 Gift Card 

"We developed Dirty Jobs Heavy-Duty Cleaning Products to combat the toughest, dirtiest jobs in America," said Adam Lerner, President and co-founder of My Dirty Jobs.  "Our Mess Master contest will spotlight those really dirty mess makers from coast-to-coast and the incredible messes they make."      

Dirty Jobs is inspired by the Emmy® nominated Discovery Channel series Dirty Jobs, part of Discovery Communications, the world’s number one nonfiction media company, in which host Mike Rowe travels the country showcasing hard working men and women who have some of the country’s messiest occupations.
For more information about Dirty Jobs and the Dirty Jobs Mess Master contest, readers are invited to or www.mydirtyjobs/messmasters. 

It's like my kids knew the future and have been planning on this to happen for the past seven and a half years.  I really hope my readers enter this contest, but I hope none of you win the grand prize.  I'm just being honest, because I'm going to enter and I want to win!!!  You guys can win the other levels of prizes, I just want the main one.  I like my chances because I have the best picture of the messiest mess you could ever see. 

Yes, an aerial picture of my house from Google Maps.

I will be giving away a $10.00 gift card to a Welcome to Boltonshire reader to one of the retail stores carrying the My Dirty Jobs products (minus Albertsons).  All you need to do is leave a comment below letting me know if you prefer a Wal Mart Gift Card or a Lowe's Gift Card.

Requirements for Winning: Please be in the continental United States and no family.  Sorry Nana, if you want a gift card, just ask I'll get you one.

So leave a comment and go do the other thing too.

Welcome to Boltonshire.


Save the Choclate Bunny [ Contest / Giveaway ]

Easter is coming in a couple of weeks. Easter is the time of year where we have the annual celebration when God sent His only begotten bunny to die on the cross for our sins.  But not before spreading a bunch of multicolored eggs around for the children to pick up.  

Unless you're in San Antonio, then it's all about the cascarones (or confetti eggs for you non-San Antonians).  Then you have to make sure your kids do not have any hidden or else this happens.

Yeah, I'm having the TSA checking the kids before they get in the van this Easter.

I kid about the God sending the bunny thing.  My family and I celebrate Easter as the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the grave.  The kids understand the Easter Bunny is make believe even though they still receive a basket or bucket of candy or simple toys, but they understand the gifts are from their parents.

I was tapped to promote Mattel's [ facebook / twitter  ]  "Save the Chocolate Bunny".  The campaign is promoting "toys instead of chocolate" to encourage creative, healthy, sugar-free play for kids! 

You can visit the Save the Chocolate Bunny website,  where you'll find more giveaways and coupons.

They've even made a couple of videos to promote the campaign which you can view below.  The first is a quick animated short and the second are a bunch of celebrities begging us to forgo the genocide of the chocolate bunny.

In the widget below, you will have different ways you can be entered into the contest.  The more times you enter, the better your chances.  The contest ends on 03-28-2013.  The official time is on the countdown timer below.  Mattel is giving away eleven prize packs (again which are shown below).  So enter as many times as you like,  it would be cool if one of my readers would win the big cascarone.

Another giveaway is also at the bottom of this post.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


A lucky Welcome to Boltonshire reader will win one of the following prizes.

To win, all you have to do is leave a comment below and tell me which one you will like: The Hot Wheels Multipack or the Barbie Madison Doll.  This contest will be over 11:59 PM on Easter Day 03-31-2013.  Please only residents in the continental United States for this second giveaway.  

So like Hiro Nakamoru said in the NBC Super Hero Sci-Fi Drama HEROES, "Save the Chocolate Bunny, Save the World!!!"

Welcome to Boltonshire


Ducks and Drool [Loreli's Diary]

Somehow Loreli found out about the existence of diaries.  She wanted to get one and write stuff down she felt was important that no one would read.

Like this blog.

We bought it for her on Sunday and she made some entries throughout the afternoon and evening.  She told me there was something about me and I was never going to see it.

So I told her, I was going to buy a diary and write about her and not tell her.  But I don't feel like leaving right now.  I'll just go in her room, betray her trust and pick the lock to see what she said about me.

This would explain all the quacking and laughing until about 9:30 every night.

Now this part really pissed me off.  I'd rather her talk about a boy than dis the Aggies.  I was so mad I ripped the pages off.  It then occurred to me what I've done.  So I put the diary under her bed where Rosco sleeps.  She woke up and blamed him.

Welcome to Boltonshire.


The One About Possible Baby Names [Texts From Kristie]

Kristie and I text quite often.  I work a lot and she's home.  She's watching Downton Abbey or Once Upon a Time in  the living room  and I'm watching Doctor Who in our room.  It's just hard for us to find time to actually talk to one another.  

One thing we text about right now is what we're going to name the baby.  This is one of those conversations.

Welcome to Boltonshire.


Naming the Baby [Celebrity Baby Names Edition]

A major topic of conversation in Boltonshire is what to name Bolton 6.0.  I think I have some pretty good ideas. My wife doesn't give them a chance, so I decided to see if I could convince her if I put the name in print.

My next batch are of possible celebrity baby names for the upcoming kid.  You know how celebrities really don't like kids so they punish them with weird names?  Yeah, this last child is going to be a little social experiment for me.

Do you think celebrities look at our kids with "normal" names and think we're the bunch of freaks?

In no particular order...

So what do you think??  I  think West Sayid is particularly brilliant.  

I know. I know. I could be messing them up inside with weird names like this.  I'm prepared for such a situation.  Which is why I plan on getting this tat in hopes to reduce the cost of the psych visits.

Welcome to Boltonshire.


Ad Space For Lease

There's this dude who got a Netflix tattoo.  A Netflix tattoo?  Yes a tattoo of the word "NETFLIX".  See the picture?  Yes that is real.  The story is that he loves Netflix so much, he had to make it a permanent part of his body.  He even  tweeted the picture to @Netflix and they gave him a free year of the service.

A free year!

We have Netflix and it's like 8 bucks a month. Multiply that by 12 and it's only 96 dollars.  If he got both the streaming and the DVD service, it's just under $200.00 worth of services.  Is it worth it?

Heck yeah it's worth it.  This guy is a genius because he doesn't have to stop there, he can get tatted up with "HULU+" and  "Amazon" and try to get their services for free.

Now I'm not above trying to find a steady stream of income outside my full time job.  So I decided to take this brilliant idea and make it my own.  There's a lot of goods and services I would like for free that I would risk hepatitis to obtain.

Here's some of my options.

This one is a no-brainer.  Dr Pepper and I are like uuuhhhh... two things that go well together.  I figure if I get a Dr Pepper tattoo and @DrPepper wants to give me a years supply of DP, I'd save like $4500 a year.

But we also need a second car.  We just have the Bolton Battle Wagon right now and I'm sure my wife would like to sleep in once in a while instead of taking me to work.  If I go this route, I might change it to a Dodge Challenger.  I'd even go as low as a '95 Kia.

Seeing as how we spent New Years Day in the ER this year, I wouldn't mind sporting this if I didn't have to pay a deductible to them EVERY YEAR!!!!!!

If I get this one, I need to get it quick since Bolton 6.0 is coming soon.  This one also straddles the line between "free baby" and "restraining order".

Boltonshire needs more square footage.  Even though we got rid of Michael in September, we still need more room.  I figure @PulteHomes would like this one and could supply us with the square footage we need.

So what shall it be my friends?

I  thought about putting a sports team or logo, but a lot of people have those and you hear nothing about free tuition to those guys.

But if I put one on my kid and tweet it?  I'm sure it has scholarship written all over it.

Welcome to Boltonshire.