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43 Balls

Posted February 9, 2016 into Sport by John Birmingham

In which Beeso and the Doc talk Bathurst's code war, Going Small for Dummies, Beeso's Hot Take™, private equity Dicks, the Wide World of Extreme Sports, their comprehensive, thoughtful and flat-out-wrong Super Bowl 50 preview, and much much more for so much less than you would expect to pay.


1 Responses to ‘43 Balls’

BigWillieStyle is gonna tell you...

Posted February 10, 2016

I thought it was Super Bowl L? When did they decide to ditch the Roman numerals?

I watched the Super Bowl on Monday. Couldn't believe how relentlessly awful both quarterbacks were. And the choice of Von Miller as MVP was just wrong. I thought Jarryd Hayne was easily the best player on the field.

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Balls Ep 28

Posted September 22, 2015 into Sport by John Birmingham

When too much sport is barely enough, Beeso and the Doc more down your throat. With a fistful of free books, signed by me.

All the deets are here, along with wraps of all the finals.

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dweeze is gonna tell you...

Posted September 25, 2015
Listened. Loved it. Liked the promos for JB bookiness. Loathed that ya gotta be on FB or a tweetererer to enter. To paraphrase Danny Trejo:
"dweeze don't tweet"
...nor does he do the book of faces.
...but I'll be back anyway.

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Two Balls

Posted September 17, 2015 into Sport by John Birmingham

Because my balls handling skills were a little off this week.

First up, Beeso and the Doc discuss fat blokes running into each other, and then they look back at TISM.

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dweeze is gonna tell you...

Posted September 21, 2015
What a load of bollocks. This is just the sort of ballsup that I enjoy. I'll be coming back for more next week.

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Balls Ep 26

Posted September 9, 2015 into Sport by John Birmingham

In which Beeso and the Doc get busy with summer ales, backlash clickbait and "who is the Star Wars of football sides".

Press play.

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JBtoo ducks in to say...

Posted September 9, 2015
holy shit!

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Fitbit review, sort of

Posted May 16, 2013 into Sport by John Birmingham

How totes ironical that after linking to the Power Paunch story, I get a nudge from Attendly that a long piece I wrote for them about the Fitbit has just gone live. Here's the opener:

I used to be a fat man. Not Biggest Loser fat, but fond enough of my bakery treats to have spent more than a decade on the wrong side of morbid obesity. It would have killed me eventually.

But about four or five years ago I got rid of most of the weight through a combination of brutal exercise and calorie control. (I know, who’da thunk it?) And since then I’ve (mostly) kept it off.

You too could look this svelte if you weren't so fat.

But it’s a struggle. It’s a hell of a struggle to change the habits of a lifetime in the first place, and even more so not to relapse. So anything which helps keep me out of the bakery and going to the gym, or the dojo, or just walking the damn dog a couple of times a week, is welcome.

That’s why I rushed to embrace the Fitbit earlier this year. It’s why I’m still wearing it right now, even though it’s not a magic device that melts fat and builds muscle like an action movie montage.

So, for those of you unfamiliar with the technology, what the hell am I talking about?

The Fitbit is just one of a whole bunch of wearable gizmos — digital pedometers really — which have been selling like the hotcakes I shouldn’t be eating anymore. I can’t speak to the usefulness of competitors like Nike’s FuelBand because I’ve never used them, but I’ve been wearing my Fitbit since getting it last Christmas. It’s basically a small black lozenge-shaped device, a little smaller than your little finger. You can slip it into your pocket, or put it in a clip-on holder and attach it to a piece of clothing. Your jeans pocket, a bra strap, whatever. It measures not just the number of steps you take, but the intensity of your movement. There’s also a quite sophisticated altimeter to keep track of the number of floors you have climbed—(although ‘floor’ is really just an estimate).

As somebody who works in front of a screen all day I can attest to the accuracy of the Fitbit in tracking how much energy I burn—or don’t. On days when deadlines see me slumped in front of my keyboard, it lets me know all about my complete lack of mobility.

And here's the rest of it.

6 Responses to ‘Fitbit review, sort of’

pi mutters...

Posted May 16, 2013

OT, but someone has written an open-source newsreader to replace google's shutdown. If interested :

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w from brisbane would have you know...

Posted May 16, 2013

Good article! Write that, Dan Brown!

I like that old observation.

What is the best day of a diet?
Tuesday, because it is over by then.

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Dave W ducks in to say...

Posted May 16, 2013

I got me a watch that links up to one of those wanky elastic chest strap heart rate monitors. The effect of knowing the estimate of how many calories I burnt and my heart rate in a sesh has helped me to shift a couple of kilos in the last six months.

My bet is that anything that makes us conscious of our energy output also makes us conscious of our energy input and whether we're doing enough about either.

The suits that I bought in Vietnam a couple of years ago need replacing because the trousers keep sliding down and that is something that I'm cheering about. The alleged Power Paunch can get fucked, I want to live and move in the manner to which I was always accustomed.

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Barnesm asserts...

Posted May 16, 2013

stop wasting time with gagets science and hurry up and give me my supersoldier serum that turns me into a buff superman with no effrot.

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JG asserts...

Posted May 16, 2013

Great review, JB. I wear my Fitbit all the time too. Found out about it from you, so thanks. I love it but the manual food entry and the limited range of foods is a pain. Thanks for being my Fitbit pal, JB. I'm into week one of Michelle Bridges 12wbt. I using other fitness apps too: Endomondo and FtitnessPal. Typing on phone, so please excuse typos

JG :)

P.S. I have lost 12kgs since January thanks to my Fitbit. Now 58.6kgs. I ran 8kms in the Mother's Day Classic Fun Run in Brisbane last Sunday. Thanks for getting me back to health and fitness, John.

Joanna G.... Long P.S. ;)

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Tim swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 10, 2013


I know this is only a few weeks after you reviewed The One, but I wonder if you have heard any feedback about FitBit's Aria scales or the Flex? I already have a set of fancy scales, but the Flex looks pretty intriguing, particularly the alarm - I'm curious about the lack of a screen, though...

Would apprecite your thoughts or direction.

I also agree with your final pars in at the end of the review - I recently lost fifteen kilos after eight solid weeks of intense boxing and diet, and then smashed 2/3 of it back on in response to work strees and the black dog. Bring on the emotional re-engineering, I say!


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Sensei Flinthart

Posted April 22, 2013 into Sport by John Birmingham

Woke up at five this morning with a migraine closing in on me. So I'm disinclined to spend much time in front of the screen for the next few hours.

Never mind. Mr Flinthart has all your Monday morning reading needs covered with this excellent post about taking three of his littl'uns to a tae kwon do tournament.

It was a well timed post for me, having spent an hour with Anna on the weekend laying down the basics of kumite. Not satisfied with the gnarlier street defence aspect of jujitsu she'd asked if we could do some 'regular fight' training, where the fighting is bound by rules and obigations of honor, unlke those methods in which she's being trained for self defence.

Flinthart explains how they do things in his dojo, which is pretty much how they do them everywhere children are taught in the Tokhon Ryu.

I expected my three players to get tagged out on points fairly early. After all, the ruleset actually precluded about eighty percent of what they know how to do: no grappling, no locks, no throws, no ground-fighting, no strangling, no knees, no elbows, etc. In the Scottsdale dojo, I break it up for them, of course. Sometimes they practice judo-style, trying to throw. Other times they wrestle on the ground. Sometimes they practice the standing/striking stuff. And there are games: with padded foam "swords"; games where they try to push one another out of a designated square. Learning games. And sometimes, for the fun of it, I ask them to put it all together: stand and strike until someone grapples. Then struggle for the throw. Then keep going on the ground for a submission of some sort.

That's what they think of when someone talks about "fighting" on the mat.

In other words, they went into this competition at something of a disadvantage. Not only were they barred from most of what they know, but they were competing with kids for whom the standing/striking stuff was all they did.

What happened next is well worth a read. Especially if you have your own littl'un and you're considering enrolling them in a martial art. (With one caveat. Flinthart's kids live at home with him. They live at the dojo, in other words. They live the art every day, whether they know it or not, whether they are on the mat or not. It's not the same as turning up once a week for an hour's practice).

5 Responses to ‘Sensei Flinthart’

Dirk ducks in to say...

Posted April 22, 2013

Well. One of 'em weren't my personal kid, like. But he's around here most weekends. You know what kids are like in a country setting: they're kind of communal.

I was damned proud of 'em, though. The ability to adapt their own game, and derail that of the opposition while staying within the rules is as much as I could have asked for.

You're right about living in the dojo, though. I do occasionally reflect on the way ju-jitsu has altered the way I live, and yes, it's under the skin. A long way down. From breathing to walking to lifting and carrying; from problem-solving to prioritising and just about everything else. The underlying principles of absorbing what comes and adapting it, taking energy and redirecting it -- these are things that can be applied to simple living, and they do make it a lot easier.

I expect the kids see a lot of that, whether I think about it or not.

JG is gonna tell you...

Posted April 22, 2013

I didn't know you were a ju-jitsu sensei, Dirk. How many years have you been practising it? Did you meet JB through ju-jitsu? It sounds like a lovely martial arts, utilising the transfer of energy... eg 'from breathing to walking to lifting and carrying'.

I can see how ju-jitsu is an analogy for life, and how it could be useful across one's life (ie learning self control, transforming difficulties to challenges and advantages).

What martial arts discipline would you recommend for older females (ie middle-aged and over)/beginners with no martial arts background?

JB - Sorry to hear you have another migraine. I hope it goes away soon.

Joanna :)

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Bondiboy66 swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted April 22, 2013

When I hear 'kumite' I instantly think of that fabulous Jean-Claude Van Damme training film 'Bloodsport'.

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coriolisdave reckons...

Posted April 22, 2013

Awesome stuff Flintheart. What you describe as your go-to sparring sounds very much like ultra-traditional TKD "TKD sparring" - basically, anything goes, grappling/etc/etc. Still kick-heavy, being TKD done by TKD people, but still. It's not done anywhere near as much as the more sporty stuff, unfortunately, but it definitely exists.

Not sure if the WTF mob (aka olympic-style, which is who your hosts sound like) do it, but if you can find some local ITF clubs you could host your own wee tourny. I know I'd have loved to go to something like that back when I was training.

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ShaneAlpha mumbles...

Posted April 22, 2013

Studying any martial art, armed or unarmed, influences your life in ways you never expected.

And kids gowing up in that environment just absorb it through their skin, which scares the hell out of those of us who started later in life.

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