Wednesday, April 8, 2009

This is what I did yesterday....

Sorry not much time.... That's me and Fletch on a rock in Cinque Terre. Andrew took the picture and then came out to hang on the rock.... Ill try to post more soon!

- MFG

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Uhhhhh... GAME ON!

See ya in Venice!


Oh, and we won last night.. Woo Hoo

- MFG

Friday, March 27, 2009

Clip of the Week!

Game tomorrow, yada yada yada.. This week's clip is a good one.... Now, when you get something on youtube sent to you from your mother, you usually think to yourself "What the heck could she have seen that I, a younger, more experienced youtuber, have not seen yet?" Welp, she got me on this one.. its tight



Sooooo, that was sick and my mom got me on that one... Im stressing hard right now due to our impending trip, last minute changes, and of course, packing up and leaving the life I have been living for the past 8 MONTHS! That is insane to me and I cannot believe it is all over, but, on the other hand, I am so excited to travel and get back to my life in America with my family, girlfriend, and friends. Alot of conflicting emotions plus stress equals I need to relax. I am sure I will once Andrew, Fletch, and I crack open that first bottle of red in Italy... That is all for my rant, I am sure there will be more to come over the next 3 weeks... Until next time......

- MFG

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Soccer is Tight...

I have officially decided being a pro soccer player in Europe is one of the coolest jobs in the world. Marko and I went to the BVB Dortmund vs. Bremen bundesliga game this past weekend and it was amazing. I guess Dortmund's stadium is one of the biggest in Europe, holding 85,000 people, and it, my friends, was LEGIT.

The fans all have their flags and they chant songs. It was awesome. Dortmund ended up winning 1 - 0 on a penalty kick but their were about 123345235909 other chances to score. Marko and I were both a little sad that no other goals were scored, but it was exciting nonetheless.

video

After going to the game we got back and a bunch of our teammates came over to hang out. We ended up finding our way to Dortmund again that night, going to this club called Prisma (spelling?). I think it was definitely my favorite bar/club I have been to in Germany thus far. Let's just say, Saturday was a LONG day.

The night before, we had our game for the week. The team was young and garbage and it was very difficult to focus on the game. I actually only played probably 7 minutes. 5 in the first quarter and than I got my second foul early in the 2nd and by half, we were already up by like 25. The young Germans got big minutes throughout the game and it was great to see how much they have improved over the year. I was happy to let them have their moment and stick it to the other team throughout the second half. We ended up winning by almost 50 while scoring 126 points, of which, I had none. I took one shot that hit the back rim and my line for the day was probably 0 points, 5 assists, 5 rebounds, 2 FOULS in 7 minutes of play. Woo hoo, go me....

Congrats to Trev's second men's team who won their league championship on Sunday and than bbq'ed all night at our apartment. Good times. Also, big ups to Amherst Women's Hockey for winning the national championship this past weekend. Mucho respect. Of course, congrats to Amherst Women's Basketball for killing it and reaching the National Semi's as well. Great work. Gotta keep that Amherst pride.. JEFFS FOR LIFE

UMMMMMMMMMMM, on SUNDAY Fletcher, Andrew, and I begin our European trip! We are all extremely excited and I think we may do something crazy before we begin the trip, but that, of course, will be for a later post. After all, if I aint gonna do something crazy now, when the hell else will I? Probably never... We fly to Venice on Sunday night and the mayhem begins. I will try to update the blog as much as possible but who knows how much internet we will have.

I hope everyone is doing well back in the States and I miss you all. If anyone wants to improve his/her bball game this summer, there is a private basketball instructor waiting to be hired and his name is ME. Let me know... email me, do whatever.. mgoldsmith08@gmail.com... I know some of you young studs at Delbarton read this blog, so hit me up, facebook me.. do whatever... I will be home April 19th and I cant wait to see Brooke in Barcelona on the 11th, my fam on the 19th and my friends thereafter... MUCH LOVE

- MFG

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

As Promised...

This week's clip of the week is clearly the promised Dunk Contest written about yesterday. Enough said... Enjoy!



- MFG

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Extra, Extra: Read All About It

After a slow start to the week, it has suddenly taken a turn into blogworthy territory. First, the bad news: We lost on Saturday. We played great for 3 quarters and had a few tough possessions, a few bad calls, and a few mismatches we couldn't fix in the fourth and ended up taking the L. There is no excuse and we definitely should have been able to hang on for the win, but that's why they play the game. I don't want to go into too much detail because it might upset me. As you can tell from this and that, the papers did not want to talk much about it either. I think I had around 10 points with like 16/17 boards. We were still a little upset that night and did not do much, but whatever dude, life moves on.

And move on, it did.... On Sunday, we not only discovered one of the greatest shows in recent memory - The Tool Academy (Matsuflex, Tiny Tool, and Shawn are legends) - but we also had a VERY traditional German meal with our land lady. It was interesting to say the least. It began with us sitting around the couch in a dimly lit family room, sipping beers and freshly squeezed orange juice with the man in the house (huh?) and ended with some epic battles in darts. In between, we had zee German meal.

Although I must admit that the mashed potatoes were extremely tasty and scrumptious.. yum yum yum.. the rest of the meal was more interesting than scrump-diddly-umptious... First, the other side dish - sauerkraut. Now, I am not a big sauerkraut guy, but I definitely felt it was necessary to eat as much as possible so as to be polite to my lovely hosts. It was pretty tasty (I mean it was OK) and I am sure for all you sauerkraut lovers out there, a traditional German 'kraut would have made your day, but everyone has their own tastes, and 'kraut has never made my taste buds tingle with delight.

The main dish of the night is known as "eisbein." Wikipedia describes it very well here, even commenting on what the side dishes usually are with this meal. Man, wikipedia is so SMART. Now, eisbein is pig leg. It looked to me as though this pig leg was hacked off by some sort of large butchering knife and placed in an oven or something. The outside skin of the meat was so crispy it was nearly impossible to cut with a steak knife. Our host described this outside portion as her favorite part, almost like a potato chip, except harder to chew.

Me: ehhhhh, the outside was not my fave as it was solid as hell and full with fattyness. I ate most of my eisbein without gagging or doing any of my other standard maneuvers which used to plague the Goldsmith dinner table during my younger years (I was a bit of a picky eater).

After dinner, we had a lovely little orange, gelatin type cake thing... yes, that is the best way to describe it, and, I must admit, it was quite tasty. As we were about to leave, we got swindled into sitting down in the living room again and than challenged to some darts. Obviously, I was down and we ended up staying for probably another hour after the meal. It was a great time and definitely something any self-respecting German-American who lives in Germany should experience in his life... ONCE... at the most...

This dart game lead to some chatter between the housemates and somehow forced Marko into challenging me to a dunk contest. This dunk contest took place last night. I will now go into my alter-ego sports reporter and shamelessly hype this contest (video will be coming shortly thanks to the ever-so-talented Trevor Wittwer).

THIS JUST IN: BIG NEWS FROM WERNE, GERMANY

In a historic move, Marko "the Serbian Sensation" Filipovic has challenged Matt "the One-Legged American Vet" Goldsmith to a slam dunk competition. This contest will be hyped as "McSnack presents: the 2009 TV Werne Slam Dunk Contest." (In no way does McSnack represent or serve McDonald's affiliated cuisine, bringing pea soup, currywurst, and other strange German specialties to the foreigners of Werne every Monday and Thursday.)

In an epic battle of bitter rivals, Filipovic has challenged Goldsmith to something much larger than even he could understand, reminding many spectators of the Rocky vs Ivan Drago fight in Rocky IV or even the movie Miracle, chronicling the 1980 US Olympic hockey victory over the Soviets.

Marko "the ex-Yugoslavian, ex-Serbian-Montenegroan, current Serbian" Filipovic is a young, 21-year-old talent with immense amounts of potential, a 6'10" frame, and a naive outlook on life. Don't worry though ladies, he is not like most Serbians, and still chooses to cuddle as frequently as he can. He hopes to come to a town near you as soon as possible, currently studying hard so he can pass the SAT's and go to college in the States.

The much wiser, far more experienced Goldsmith is a wily veteran full of big ideas and high hopes. Matt "the One-Legged Wonder" Goldsmith aka "Peg Leg," aka "the Jersey Jumper," aka "I-will-take-reverse-lay-ups-and-lefty-hooks-all-day" is hoping to bring the American style of showmanship and pure, uninhibited, Nascar-esque power to all of his dunks. He describes himself as a crowd-pleaser with "a few tricks still up the old sleeve."

With a rivaly so ingrained in history, the "McSnack presents: the 2009 TV Werne Slam Dunk Contest" will surely be one for the ages. My early prediction: mark one more down for good ol' Amurica.

Video to come soon...

- MFG

Friday, March 13, 2009

Clip of the Week!

Don't you go thinking I forgot. This week's clip is a bit different than past week's... it is not meant to be funny but rather, simply entertaining. This is a clip of one of the tightest dances ever on America's Best Dance Crew. This is a show on MTV where "crews" battle each other to see who the best in America is. These are the Beat Freaks and they are absolutely ridiculous.



BOOM! That was siiiiiiiiick... K, later..

- MFG

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Great Stuff..

As the newspaper article about our game states, my Mom and Dad came to Germany this past weekend for a little basketball and a little bit of travelling. It was a great weekend (especially since I got to travel on the parents bill) where we got to see the biggest cathedral I have ever seen in Cologne and "Old Town" in Dusseldorf. The game wasn't too bad either as we won by like 40 points and I had 18 for my hometown fans, which happened to include Fletcher and AO for the second half. It is always amazing when you look into the stands and see some familiar faces.

Trevor put in work with like a thousand dunks and blocks and everyone in the house had at least 15 or so except Marko who sat out the game due to a rolled ankle. I think the four of us ended up with like 75 of our 110 points.

We came out firing and quickly built a 20 point lead we never relinquished. The young guys got to play and overall, it was a great game and an awesome environment for a TV Werne match. We have a big game this weekend and hopefully we will get the w. We lost to this team by 40 while I was in America healing up my foot so I am hoping that I can make the difference on Saturday.

After the game, my mom made the best meatball subs that have ever graced my taste buds and a big salad. Everyone in the house absolutely loved the home-cooked, Americanized meal and is extremely grateful... Thanks Ma Dukes! After feasting, Fletcher, Andrew, and I sat around and continued to plan out Euro Trip 09. It seems as though Paris is off the list and Barcelona has slid in, so thank you for all the input. I cannot lie, I am so excited about this trip. It is definitely going to be one of those things that we never forget and I just can't wait to get it started....

On Sunday, I woke up early and the rents and I took the train to Cologne to check out the old city on the Rhine. It was awesome. As you pull into the train station the Rhine is on your left and the Cathedral is on your right. This thing was absolutely massive as you can tell by the photo at the top. After seeing the Cathedral, we hit up the Roman and German Museum of History. It was filled with very cool, old artifacts, including Maximus Decimus Meridius's tombstone (that's not true, but I like to think so). He was the commander of the armies to the North, loyal servant to the true emperor, Marcus Aurelius, father to a... well, you get the drift.

To end the day, we went to the Chocolate Museum. It caters to the youner crowd but, somehow, I still found it most entertaining. After our second, tasty German meal of the day, we called it a night and headed back to the hotel, which, by the way, was definitely the nicest hotel ever (the mini bar was complimentary! unheard of..). The next morning we went to Dusseldorf and checked out the Old Town there. It is pretty nice, but I definitely liked Cologne better. The highlight of the day was definitely the full glass of water with ice and the grilled chicken, cheddar, and bacon sandwhich I got at an Irish pub in the middle of Dusseldorf. It tasted just like I was back in Motown at the Dublin... Really made me miss home, but, I will be back so soon so it is allll good. Overall, great weekend with the rents and one I will not soon forget!

- MFG

Friday, March 6, 2009

Clip of the Week!

Ok, this week's clip is an oldie but a goodie. It is a clip of a bunch of "gamers" playing World of Warcraft (a computer game) online. They are strategizing and deciding how to attack the next level. I guess they talk to each other using headsets and are like in a group who consistently play together or something. I dunno, but, all I do know is, the only one I would want to hang out with is the infamous Leroy Jenkins and you can see why for yourself.



Hope you enjoyed it!

- MFG

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Week in Review..

Sooo we suffered a heart-breaker of a loss on Saturday. We were late, we were down, we were up, back down, tied, and than lost by 3. I was satisfied with my play and actually felt pretty good most of the day, after the 1st quarter at least, but the game ended poorly for me and it soured my entire opinion on the game.

To review, most of the team got lost and we showed up late. Then, we went down by a bunch of points early in the first and than came out on fire, dropping in 37 in the second quarter. This run was capped off beautifully by yours truly by stealing in inbounds pass halway between the 3 and half-court with 3 seconds left, turning, and wetting a bomb of a three at the buzzer. We went into the half up 8.

Within two minutes of the third quarter, however, we were losing by 1. We took a BUNCH of bad shots in a row and our defense was suspect at best. BOO.. So we went back down by ten, than tied it up in the fourth quarter with like 3 minutes left. Got whistled for an intentional foul on a REBOUND which lead to two free throws and an and 1 runner in the lane by their American... 5 point possession in the last two minutes, eeeyaa later (to clarify, I committed neither of these fouls.. I felt I needed to say this since my dad thought I committed BOTH).

My mood was sour after the game because within the last minute I hit a three, grabbed a few big boards and choked on two free throws.. Woo hoo... It was a minute full of emotions and the last one was an "I suck" feeling. Luckily, my teammates were there to pick my mood up after the game. We didn't do much that night.. Just relaxed after the loss and watched Godfather Part 2 for the first time. Freakin awesome and I highly recommend...

The other major event of the last week was the planning of Eurotrip 09. On Sunday night, Fletcher, Andrew, and I met to talk about our adventures and they are going to be serious. The basic sketch is to start in Venice, hit Naples quickly, Rome for a few days, Florence, Nice and Barcelona... this is where the plan has haulted. We cannot decide whether to do a long train ride from Barcelona to Paris and than hop over to London after a few days, oooorrrr do an extra day in Barcelona, hit up Madrid for a couple days and hop on a cheap Ryanair flight from Madrid to London. I will be putting a poll on the side of the page and would appreciate you voting because all of us want to see everything and we cannot make a damn final decision.

We even emailed our old Art History professor to see his opinion and in true Art History professor form, he said we will figure it out in time and that deciding is part of the learning process.. Damn you for still trying to teach us things about life! So, once we do London for a couple days, we are going to go to Dublin for a couple nights and than I am coming home April 19th! Woooo hooo, very excited about coming home.

Speaking of home, my parents will be arriving here in Germany on Friday morning. I cannot wait and I am sure my pops is super psyched to see a game this weekend, so we better make it a good one. I know not having Amherst basketball every weekend has taken a toll on him.. haha... After the game, we are going to see some German cities before they go home on Tuesday. Should be fun and I cannot wait to see some family! That is all for now, don't forget about the poll....

- MFG

Friday, February 27, 2009

Clip of the Week!

Don't you go thinking I forgot... I am sticking with my clip of the week plan until someone tells me not to.

This week, the clip is of a young boy after getting a tooth pulled. This clip has been flying around the internet in the past few weeks and I am sure some of you have seen it already, but it is a great one and worth another look. Besides the absolute highness of the kid, I feel the Dad really improves the clip by asking juusssst the right questions... Enjoy!



- MFG

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

5 Smurfs vs. A Viking: A Summary of Karneval Weekend

If you have ever seen 5 smurfs take down a viking, you may have been to the most recent celebration of Karneval in Germany. Before I get into the nitty-gritty of Karneval weekend (Carnival in Brazil or Mardi Gras in N'Orleans), let me just say that this is definitely one of the most insane celebrations in all of Germany and I am surprised that it does not get as much coverage as Octoberfest. Then again, I am sure the Brazilian version (which gets way more hype than the German version) is far more ridiculous with its warm weather and notoriously beautiful Brazilian women. Now, let the stories begin (this post may be a long one).

So on Friday we were invited by Ivan, our coach, and one of the guys who takes care of all things TV Werne to go to this Karneval celebration. We knew NOTHING about what this weekend was for or what we were getting ourselves into besides the fact that it was only men, but we went nonetheless. I guess Friday is like "Man Day" of Karneval weekend and Thursday is "Woman Day" because on each day there are parties which can only be attended by one gender or the other. I thought it was strange sounding going in, but I now think it is great.

When we arrived at the party, our host told us to simply, laugh, be loud, and drink beer. We all happily obliged, helped along by an 11 liter mini keg of Krombacher for the 5 of us. Throughout the night, they had comedians on stage and good looking women in funny outfits doing dances and such for the crowd. Between every act, a girl would come out holding the number of the round we were on (similar to a boxing fight), with 11 rounds in all. This lasted from 7 to 11. This night was more similar to a boxing fight than you may imagine, as one of the fine German gentleman sitting near us was KO'ed by a deadly combination of Krombacher, beautiful women, and dancing on our table (which he smoothly fell right off in mid-cheer).

After arriving back at the house, we decided that the only logical course of action would be to continue this wonderful evening at a local bar. On Friday nights, it is 99 cents for any mixed drink at a bar right here in Werne, and we took full advantage of our Saturday day off by abusing this bar's specials. In addition, Marko pulled some black-market-Serbian-sweet-talk to get us into the bar without having to pay a cover charge. A fun night for a small fee: Glorious.

When the house finally awoke on Saturday we were not a very energetic bunch. We relaxed mostly and stayed in for the night, teaching a few drinking games to Marko throughout the evening and going to bed a bit earlier than the night before. Uneventful to say the least. Since I had to work on Monday, I did not plan on going out Sunday night but Marko, Junior, and Trevor supposedly had an amazing evening at a famous local pajama party in Waltrop. Sounds good to this guy... but now, we shall proceed to the really good stuff.

I awoke Monday like any other Monday: sleepy and upset that it was only Monday. I had little to no expectations for the day. I was very excited, however, that we got to leave work early to attend the local parade / party / Karneval celebration. I had heard rumors that Karneval was a good time but we live in Werne and how good could a silly parade in a small town be?

ANSWER: AMAZZZZZZZZZING

First off, Karneval is similar to Halloween in the US - everyone is dressed in costume (or mostly everyone), and the people on the parade floats fire candies in the crowd the entire day and you know I love me some German gummy bears - 1 point Karneval... In addition, there are no laws prohibiting open containers and such and Germans encourage everyone to drink at the earliest hour possible: in this case - we were drinking by 1 PM on the streets of Werne, patiently waiting for the parade to begin - tack on another punta for Karneval.. Cheap Vodka = point, Good Orange Juice = point, Even better screwdrivers = multiple points - you get the drift. I think I can stop officially awarding points now and let the reader come to his or her own verdict after hearing the story of the rest of the day...

So, while drinking our screwdrivers and hanging out on the streets of Werne all day, we witnessed many hilarious events. One of my personal favorites was the old, drunk German lady who walked up to Junior, licked her thumb, and proceeded to try to rub the blackness off of his face. I guess she had black make-up on her face (I sure as hell didn't see it) and was curious as to whether Junior, T, and Junior's friend Jemell were wearing the same black make-up she had on. Much to her dismay, they were going all natural for the day.

Throughout the day, Junior's friend Jemell attempted to contribute to the liveness of the parade as much as possible. I don't know how it was in other parts of Germany, but our parade had no barriers and therefore, it was quite easy to join in and participate in any number of ways. For instance, Jemell used the old Dave Chappelle robot move and followed a few unsuspecting Germans along their parade route. He then grabbed a toy rifle so that he could lead a march through the streets of Werne. Oh yea, and 5 smurfs supposedly beat up a viking... You get the point, hilarious stuff to say the least.

After the parade finished, we headed over to our favorite local bar to continue the party. It was a ridiculous 4 or 5 in the afternoon and we ended up staying there until it felt like it was 6 am (it was actually only 8:30 PM or so but who's counting?). The day ended with some of us looking a bit different than we normally do...
I dunno about you, but when I can get my Serbian roommate to wear something like this, I call the day a success.
Overall Rating: Karneval gets an A+ for pure liveness..

Hope you enjoyed it!

- MFG

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Clip of the Week!

I have decided to unveil a new feature on my blog... The Youtube Clip of the Week!

Throughout my time here in Germany, I feel that my youtube searching ability has improved tenfold. This may be due to boredom (most likely) or because I have a primal instinct to see videos with english in them or maybe, simply because one Marcus "Ya Boy" Bradley inspires me. Nevertheless, my ability has improved.... thus, my first youtube clip of the week:

This week's clip is an ad campaign from Gatorade called "Mission G." It is a spoof of Monty Python and the Holy Grail and stars one Kevin Garnett. Although you may have seen parts of this on TV, when put together it becomes a wonderful short film. Last night, I was in dire need of a movie and with our DVD player currently on the fritz, this youtube clip had to suffice... and suffice it did...



I know it was a bit long, but I feel it is well worth it! Somehow, a boring week in Germany became most blogworthy... Three posts in one week... Let me know what you think of the new feature... haha..

- MFG

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

BLAAAHHHH

I cannot remember the last day it didn't at least drizzle here in Werne. In addition, the sun is never out. I like the sun and I miss her. I know - a bit random - but necessary in order to understand Germany and its culture.

In other news, I have gotten more clicks on the ads on the side of the page lately. That is most glorious and whoever is doing so please keep up the good work. I make a few cents for every click and maybe by 2020, I will get my first check from adsense for a nice, round 100 big ones...

Hoping for sunlight...

- MFG

Monday, February 16, 2009

Short and Sweet..

On Saturday, we absolutely spanked a team 106 - 72. They were bad. I mean, really bad. None of the housemates scored in double figures and we still had over 100! That is just crazy talk. When the game started, it felt like I was playing against an average high school team. I have an extremely hard time focusing in games like that, so I am very happy that I did not end up embarassing myself too much throughout the game.

Our young Germans were all smiles during our post-game locker room celebration as T, Trev, Marko, Junior, and I rode the pine most of the day so that they could clock some big time minutes. The newspaper articles seem much happier this week and they even commented on how much everyone has improved throughout the year with the help of the 4 Americaners...

After the game, a bunch of our teammates came back to our apartment to chill and celebrate. Trevor and I taught them the fine art of kings, horse races, and up the river down the river. We ended up just hanging in the apartment instead of going anywhere else.. a decision I was very happy with.


Earlier in the day Saturday, Freddy and I went to Dortmund to check out the shoes and clothing stores. I guess there were a ton of sales, so I picked up a new v neck and buttown down shirt from H and M. When I tried on the buttown-down shirt, Freddy looked at me and said "Indiana Jones.." Haha, so if you can picture Indiana Jones type gear on me, that is what I picked up, so don't try messing with me anytime soon cuz I may look like this stud muffin. But, for realsies, haha.. I felt that it was a tight Euro-look that I could still pull off so I went for it.

Trevor's mom has been here for the past weekend, bringing with her powdered gatorade, slim jims, and reeses peanut butter cups. Staples in any American's diet if you ask me. Special thanks to her for bringing a little bit of America with her to Germany.

Big love sent out to my boys at Amherst for holding it down against a very good Middlebury squad on saturday for senior day. I wish I could have been there for that, but it is all good. Now, it is their time to go out and get a NESCAC 'Ship... I know they can do it and they know they can do it so I say let's make it happen. Next week should be interesting as we have a week off from games and there is a major German festival going on all week: Carnival. More to come later....


- MFG

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Wooo Hooo!

Ok, so we are back on the winning track and it feels gooooooooood. Last weekend we played BG Herford at their place. No matter who you are playing, when you are the away team in Germany, you have to be ready for a battle. We came out in the first quarter ok with Trevor holding it down for the squad because everyone else was kinda being a bum. We were up after the first and than after a DISASTROUS 2nd quarter went into halftime down 8.

I have not written about this it all yet, but our team has been the focus of a major debate in all of the papers around our area. Ever since we acquired Junior, teams and players have been upset that we have so many Americans on our team and that we score around 90% of our points. They say how the young Germans need a chance to play blah blah blah and that if they can't with our team then when will they ever get a chance? Well, I don't know where these people are from (wait a second, I do, Deutschland) but where I am from you have to earn your minutes. Our young guys are just that, extremely young. They have so much to learn about basketball still and what none of these naive people understand is that prior to this season, none of them could have really played big minutes on any regionaliga team. But, by watching our squad in practice lately, I can honestly tell you that every single one of them has improved their games ten-fold just through practice alone, and it will end up benefiting them in the long run that we were all here to help them continue in their development. Ok, enough with the ranting and raving, I just had to get that off my chest.

So, I think Ivan was feeling the pressure and tried to play as many of the Germans as possible in the first half. Don't get me wrong though, none of us, including myself, really had our swagger in that first half besides Trev and therefore, we were losing at half. The second half, my friends, was a totally different story. We all came out heated after an intense locker room talk and within a minute or so into the third quarter had tied the game back up. From there, we just got after it on defense and shut them down. After giving up 53 points in the first half (WAAAAAAAAAY too much), we gave up only 35 in the second half and ended up winning by 18. I was finally satisfied with my play on Saturday, scoring 14 in the second half alone (I only had 4 in the first), and grabbing double digit rebounds. It felt damn good to put in some quality work on the court.

Here is a link to an article about the game. The rest of the week was more of the same. Lifting and work and cooking gourmet treats and watching 24 DVD's have all taken over my life. Jack Bauer is just an unbreakable, terrorist killing machine who will cut off your fingers if you ever say to no to him.

I miss my girlie and my fam and all my friends from home alot lately, but I am loving the experience over here still and Fletch, AO, Kev, and I are in the planning stages of Euro Trip '09 which will be ridiculous (and Brooke will be meeting us in Paris for the second half of this insane trip).

Oh, one last thing I totally forgot. So, on Thursday, Trevor forced me to go to this crazy public pool place in town where the average age is around 75 (no offense to anyone on the older side). I know what your thinking, ummmmmm, Matt - a public pool in Germany in February does not sound like the greatest plan.... BUT, it was legit. It is actually all salt water, massive and heated. You enter the pool from inside like a locker room and walk out and hang out in the hot water. There are these little seats where there are jets to massage your entire body and waterfalls and stuff. It was very cool. We treated it almost like we were back at school, going to the training room to get some actual healing for our aching bodies, and it worked.

Shoutout to the Lord Jeffs for getting two big NESCAC wins last weekend. I did get to watch the Bates game online and I love how our young proteges are just taking over the helm this year. Bauski looked great, Chibs banked in a free throw, and Marcus was still acting clutch. Beating Tufts always brings back great memories as well. Love to all the 09's and of course, to the rest of the squad as well. See ya next week!

- MFG

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

It Could Have Been Epic...

This weekend could have been one of the most epic weekends of my entire time here in Germany except for one little problem. We got SPANKED on Saturday by Hagen Haspe. They simply outplayed us the whole game and I got to give them credit, I think they are the best team in the league. They just know their stuff and what works for them and they do it and than do it again and then add in an alley-oop from halfcourt to make sure you know they did it.
So, who really cares that much about the game, it sucked and you do not want to hear me talk much about it. One good aspect of the game though, was that Andrew came to see me play because he played earlier in the day on Saturday. Always great to have a familiar face in the crowd. Trevor also had a visitor all weekend, his friend Lilly from high school. She was tight and was a pretty quality roommate for 3 days straight and she bakes tasty ass chocolate chip cookies.. mmmmmmmmmmhhhmmmmmmm.....

So, on Saturday night, I taught the house Strategic War. If you do not know about Strategic War please click the previous link. It is a legendary game Andrew, Fletcher, and myself created as freshman at Amherst. Clearly, Saturday night went pretty well, but the real fun was to be had on Sunday.

Super Bowl Sunday was most glorious. On Saturday, Trevor and I checked out the Joy of Cooking all afternoon and went to the Grublinghoff (the biggest food store in Werne) and picked up so many tasty, Americanized treats to cook that I almost died of finger food overdose during the Super Bowl. In addition, I invited Andrew and Fletcher to partake in our festivities - two dudes who definitely understand the concept of keeping it live.


Trevor cooked an awesome batch of chili con carne to start off our eating around 10:30 or so at night. For those not in the know, the game began at 12:28 AM in Germany. Although we began eating at night, Trevor and I had been preparing our dishes all day. I ended up making potato skins, serious nachos, and the buffalo wings I learned how to make from my brothers. Shout-out to Will and John - those wings are tasty as hell no matter where you make 'em.

In addition to all this great food, when Andrew and Fletcher showed up, they came with two cases of Iserlohner (great beer), a bottle of vodka, and a bottle of whiskey. As soon as they walked in, I thought to myself, man, that is so much unnecessary alcohol. Well, kids, one thing I have learned from hanging with the Amherst crew is no matter what it looks like before the night starts, usually its all gone by the time the night finishes.

An hour before game time, I began to assemble an array of glorious dishes to all be done at the same time. I quickly hooked up my potato skins (most of the work for the taters was done earlier in the day) while beginning my wings and and putting my nachos in the broiler with the homemade salsa I had concocted. While all this multi-tasking was happening, I had yet another task to complete. A power hour. Andrew had suggested it to the crowd while I was cooking and than called me into the room. He said that he needed to ask me a question which was "What do you think normal people do in an hour?" And I responded, "I dunno... a power hour?" And thus, the epic evening began.
After the power hour, I brought all the food out to the crowd and the game began with everyone well-lubricated and hungry. Oh, I forgot to mention, Fletcher brought over the projector which he has in his apartment, so, we got to watch the game off of my computer projected onto an entire wall in our family room. It was amazing. Throw in a great fourth quarter to the super bowl and some quality company and you have one of the best super bowls ever. If we had done this last year for the Gmen, it might have been the highlight of my life, but, alas, we did not. It was an epic evening to say the least... just wish we had won that damn game on Saturday...

- MFG

Monday, January 26, 2009

So Close..

After a long and arduous weekend, I regret to inform everyone that we lost to Munster on Saturday 90 - 89. We were up by 6 with around four minutes left and than those crazy German refs came to haunt us. To preface these statements, I hate when people complain about refs and blame losses on them, but in this situation, it clearly had a major impact on the game.

First off, in the fourth quarter alone, we had 10 fouls called on us while Munster only had 2. Keep in mind, that we continuously attacked the basket on offense and they continuously attacked our arms and faces on every rebound imaginable. Another great stat to hear is that throughout the ENTIRE game we took a total of 8 free throws. That is correct, 8... I think that Munster in the fourth quarter alone took about 16 or so. So, if you couldn't already tell, the refs were bad...

We also had a tough day shooting and made a couple mistakes down the stretch which may have cost us the game even with the terrible, crowd-influenced, town-influenced, crappy-influenced, non-trained refs. Oh, and I forgot, after the game, our manager was talking to one of the refs about the last few minutes and asked, "Did you not see their center travel?" and the ref coolly responded, "I saw it, but I forgot to blow my whistle." Really, Mr. Ref-man? Really? You forgot to blow your whistle? Really? Wait, but no, seriously, really? That's like Batman forgetting to ask Morgan Freeman to develop some absurd, unrealistic, but maybe-the-government-has-developed, piece of technology right before the big fight (FYI: we all watched the Dark Knight the other day - great stuff).

So, with that loss, our hopes of winning the league have been pretty much flushed down the drain but we can still come in second. Up to this point, we were the only team to have beaten Munster and they do not look like they will be stopped anytime soon. That may sound depressing, but coming in second does not phase these amazing fans and I am sure they will continue to bang their drums and chant their songs at the rest of our games.

The house played well, overall, but not as well as we all hoped. Trevor, of course, fouled out with 3 minutes to play and had probably around 15 or so, and Marko actually ended up fouling out at the start of the fourth quarter or so. I think I had a frustrating 13 with a good ol' bunch-o-boards. Tramaine and Junior both did work on the slower Munster guards, dropping over 20 each.

I felt alot better in practice all week, but it just did not show in the games. Coming back from injury is one of the most frustrating things EEVVVEEERRRR, but I am feeling better and better every time we practice. I just wish Coach would put in a play for an early post up for me or something, but that is a whole other rant that would take pages upon pages of beautiful blog love, and we cannot be having that now, can we?

Other than the game, there is not much to write about from this past week... mostly the same old routine.. Work, lifts, practice, cooking... STANDARD... I have been brain-storming about ways to make some money and play as much basketball as possible this summer and have been thinking about maybe doing private lessons.. Anyone need a private basketball instructor? Let me know.. Post a comment even... I heart AMERICA...

- MFG

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Exciting Stuff..

Not to go all B Jones on you, but, man, yesterday was an exciting day for the ENTIRE world. We got to watch Obama's inauguration speech here in Germany, and I am not going to lie, I am very excited to see how these next four years go. Not only can he speak ridiculously well, but he definitely has that old man game (you know he just threw up a pump fake or two against this guy). The local paper wants to interview all of us yet again to see how Americans feel about Obama and the future of our country. On another great note, out here in Europe, the anti-American sentiment has definitely calmed down, at least for the time being.

As I was surfing the pages of facebook yesterday, I noticed that everyone's status somehow had to do with Obama and the inauguration. I think it is great that this election got so many young people involved in politics and caring about our country. It is a great sign for our generation when more and more people start to care about the U.S. and our government, instead of just those Amherst nerds with their pocket protectors and political science majors.

On another exciting note, I drove to work again today and did not stall once AND I made a bomb-ass bacon, egg, and cheese this morning for breakfast that reminded me of home like woah. I also made a serious asian style grilled chicken salad last night for dinner. My chef skills are getting serious.. Watch out!

- MFG

Monday, January 19, 2009

Another Day, Another W...

This past weekend we had a great team win. We ended up winning by around 25 and everyone got to play, something always nice to see. Last Tuesday, Coach brought another American pointguard to live with us. I guess he is trying out for a couple weeks and than the management will decide whether he will stay or go. His name is Junior and this is his second year out here in Germany.

With five of us in the house, it is getting a little crowded now, but we share well. This point is extremely evident by the 10 - 15 points we all had this past weekend in the game. I think Trevor and I had 13, T had 15, Junior had 10, and Marko played as well as I have ever seen with 14 or 15. I was very proud of our young Marko even though after he starts playing well, he tries to go all showtime for the crowd.

I am still getting back into the swing of things. I played OK on the defensive end and my rebounding was good but my offensive skills are just not all the way back yet after my latest injury. Dont quite feel right.. VERY FRUSTRATING... I described it to Trevor on Saturday night as "I just do not feel like I have my mojo back quite yet.." (I may or may not have said that immediately after drinking these liter beer cans Trevor and I found that looked like an oil can) But, its all good... WOOOOW, great mood changer, I just witnessed a co-worker walk dead into a closed glass door with a large cup of coffee in her hand... AMAZING! I think I just heard 10 different German curse words.. This day is officially a good one..

On a glllllllllllllorious note, I drove a STICK SHIFT to work today and only stalled once! I think I am getting the hang of it. Whenever I drive our new car, I feel like a damn race car driver flying around until I stall and go red in the face in embarassment as angry Germans line up behind me waiting to go through the now green light. Somehow on the way to work today, I ended up on my first small hill of my stick shift career and I ended up not stalling. I didn't even hit the car behind me! WOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOOoo

Well, that is all for now, hopefully next weekend I can finally see Fletcher and Andrew because I am having some home withdrawl currently.. nothing a nice night out with the Amherst crew wouldn't fix... One love

- MFG

Monday, January 12, 2009

Guess who's back, back again?

Ladies and Gentlemen, I have officially returned to Werne and began playing basketball once again. I will be starting to blog as much as I previously did so I suggest checking back every once in a while for some quality stories.

My break in the States was awesome. I went back up to Amherst for a weekend, ate a wonderful Thanksgiving meal, and saw all of my loved ones as much as possible. It is amazing how much your baby niece grows in such a short time. She is a straight beast and I LOVE it. This is a picture of her and her proud papa on a beautiful winter trek. She is a tough one. While I was home, I had a part-time job slinging trees to well-off folks all over northern Jersey. It was ideal. I worked probably a total of 10 days or so and earned lots of loot due to my superior tree-carrying abilities and my old-lady charm. Those two characteristics combined to make me a force in the christmas tree tips game.

The rest of my time was consumed with physical therapy, helping coach basketball up at Delbarton, and making frequent trips to NYC to hang with the big bro and the gf (mostly the gf, Brooke.. haha). Coaching was awesome and I learned alot about myself by doing it. Shout-out to Coach Whalen and all my young guns for treating me well throughout the process.

I also got to live the dream in Boca Raton for a week after Christmas. The Rosenkrantz's treated me so well I almost felt guilty (key word - ALMOST, haha). We went to see Lebron vs D Wade in Miami one night and the weather throughout the trip was absolutely gorgeous. Overall, definitely one of the best weeks I had during my break and I can't thank them enough for that.

Now, this past week in Germany has been full of ups and downs. My plane ride sucked as my row was the only row in the entire plane in which the stupid tv's did not work as well as the only row with 2 young German women with severely small bladders (I was the aisle seat). That, my friends, was a down. However, upon arriving in Germany, I was greeted by a familiar face in one Mr. Kyle Noonan and his friend Rob from Philly U. That was most definitely an up and I feel I showed them a great time while they were here, but you would have to ask them about that (wink, wink). We kicked it in Werne and I showed them the German ways of drinking Pilsners and eating late night Doners (pronounced Durnas), the greatest thing to come out of Turkey... well, ever.

They left on Saturday and the weekend continued the up and down pattern the prior week had held. On Saturday, we got a nice w to start off 2009, after which, I watched my beloved Lord Jeffs hold it down in Williamstown to get the rivalry win. HUGE... Now, you may be asking yourselves, "Matt, that sounds like a great weekend to me, I am sure you went out and celebrated after those wins Saturday, and anytime Amherst beats Williams, it is a great day so where is the downer of the weekend?" Well, yes, I did have a lovely time celebrating those wins with my teammates at a crazy Russian club and yes, I love when we spank the Ephs in anything, but on Sunday, the Gmen were knocked out of the playoffs by the stupid eagles. This would not have affected me so much but my wonderful girlfriend and her family got me something called a Slingbox for Christmas which led to me having the pleasure of watching the worst Giants performance of the entire damn year live on my computer. I do love that damn Slingbox though...

My game on Saturday was an interesting one. I was very nervous going into the game due to the fact that 1. I am not in tip-top shape by any means, 2. my shot had sucked all week long in practice, and 3. I am clearly still a little rusty post-injury. As expected, I started off the game by clanking a few threes, but I then proceeded to get into the flow of things. It always helps when you are being covered by an old German dude who had a game very similar to a combination of #5 and #9 in this glorious Youtube clip. I think I played pretty well, probably having 15 points and 15 rebounds by the time the last buzzer sounded - Marcus Camby-like numbers if you ask me.

This last buzzer sounding, however, had an interesting twist. For the first time in my long, illustrious basketball career (haha) I had a buzzer-beating shot for a win. It was actually a buzzer-beating tip in but whose counting. With the game tied and 30 or so seconds left, the other team ran a crappy play that lead to a bad shot and a TV Werne rebound. T (our pg) got the outlet and came down the floor with around 14 seconds left. We ran a sorta broken play that led to T kicking the ball out to our center who swung it to our 2 guard, Freddy. Freddy throws up a three that goes in and out with around 4 seconds left. As soon as he shot, I came flying through the lane at full force looking for the rebound.


My Amherst teammates understand exactly what I am describing because whenever I barrel through the lane it is usually followed by either a charge going the other way or an And 1 followed by a ridiculous celebration. There large immovable fat guy (see Youtube clip if you have not yet), does his best hack-a-shaq impersonation and fouls the hell out of me as I reach up and tip in the shot. As the ball fell through the net, the buzzer sounded and we got the W. I turned and in typical fashion held out my arms at full length and screamed jibberish towards my bench (it was an away game). It was a most glorious feeling and I was quite pleased with myself. I chose the picture above because first, it is a picture of one of our many, absurd smashings of Williams, demonstrating my pride in the young guns getting the W in Eph-land, but secondly, it is usually what I look like right before I either get a charge or an And 1 due to the fact that once I start going to the hoop, there aint no stopping me.

On a side note, I forgot just how terrible German refs are and how badly they despise Americans. This game quickly reminded me. I got a technical foul in the middle of the second half for absolutely no reason. It was confusing, but hey, alls well that ends well. This is the link to the article. The headline is something about the golden fingers of Matthew Goldsmith.. haha, I love it.

Congratulations to Amherst for getting the w vs Williams as well as big Kevin Hopkins for signing with a new team over in East Germany. I think all us Amherst boys are doing pretty well for ourselves over here in Germany. I miss you all and will try to keep you updated as much as possible throughout the next few months. Keep on keepin' on.

- MFG

P.S. I truly appreciate when people make comments after each blog entry. It reminds me that I am actually writing this for more than just my immediate family (particularly parents) haha, no offense mom and dad because I would write it just for you anyway.