by Lang Whitaker

1) I had to hit the road for a story last weekend, which meant I was out and about and traveling the early part of this week. Got back to NYC late Tuesday night, went to sleep and woke up Wednesday morning with a vicious cold. Now my head feels as though someone snuck in during the middle of the night and poured massive amounts of plaster down my nostrils and into my skull, where the plaster has set up nicely. Plus I can’t smell anything or taste anything. Oh, and it’s 100 degrees today in New York. I spent about five minutes this morning seriously thinking about trying to figure out a way to hook up a vacuum cleaner to my nostrils.

2) What makes it worse is that I know exactly how I got the cold: I was with an NBA player all day on Monday, and his buddy was with us, wiping his runny nose and coughing the entire time. I’m usually vigilant about taking AirBorne and washing my hands, but I slacked on the AirBorne this trip. You can argue about its effectiveness, but I haven’t had a cold in about two years. Until now.

3) One other thought about the Celtics trade: While the Celts might have one of the best top three combos in the NBA, I think it’s also very fair to say they might be the worst team in the NBA from roster spots 4 through 12. Check out their roster. Am I overreacting?

4) Sam sent me a link to the unedited version of the trailer for the upcoming movie “Superbad.” Sam knows I’m a big fan of Jonah Hill, the big kid in the movie, and this trailer looks fantastic. (By the way, this trailer pretty much defines the term “Not Safe For Work.” Just letting you know. You have been warned.) The trailer is here.

5) After doing the interview with the NBA guy on Monday, I had to fly out of Orlando on Tuesday night, so to kill time during the day on Tuesday, I called my friend (and Orlando resident) Jemele Hill and we went to Universal Studios. Why not Disney (considering Jemele actually works for Disney)? I don’t know…mainly because Universal was closer to where I was staying, and also because I’d heard the roller coasters were better at Universal.

I wanted to use the occasion to write a long and witty post joking about the long-awaited reconciliation between ESPN and SLAM, but that ain’t happening — right now I’m having trouble even coming up with nouns and verbs. I can tell you that the Incredible Hulk roller coaster at the Islands of Adventure is amazing. It starts pretty slow, then you pause and go from zero to 40 in two seconds. Here’s a video that shows what it’s like. The entire ride lasts barely over a minute, but when it ended and we climbed off, I was stumbling around like Bill Walton at a Dead concert.

The strangest ride was the Spider-Man ride, where you sit in a cart wearing 3D glasses and go through what’s supposed to be a newspaper printing plant. The ride simulates going way up in the air, crashing to the ground, having fire shot at you, all kinds of stuff. But actually, you just kind of sit there while everything is projected all around you. It really feels like like you’re flying around, but you’re not. As I told Jemele, when I was a kid, going on rides actually meant getting flipped around and upside down. Now you can sit still and experience the same sensations. It’s probably all somehow Michael Vick’s fault.

6) Speaking of Michael Vick…a bunch of people have emailed me asking what I, as an avowed Falcons and Vick fan, think about all this Vick mess, and I definitely have some opinions on it. So I wrote a long column about it that I’ll be posting next week. (Also, thanks to all the people who’ve sent me the photo on the left here.)

But suffice to say, when I tried to wear my Vick jersey to take Starbury to the dog park last weekend, Wifey nearly divorced me on the spot.

7) Last but not least, a few months ago I watched “Talladega Nights: The Ballad Of Ricky Bobby” on DVD, and I wasn’t that into it. But now it’s showing on Starz all the time, and it’s much funnier than I remembered it being. There are some tremendous lines in the movie, and the kid who plays Texas Ranger deserves an Oscar. Just like the one “Highlander” got.

OK, I’ve got to go blow my nose. Have a good weekend everyone…catch you next week…