Part of what makes we who I am is my endearing love for sports. I’d rather watch a baseball, basketball, or football game over stuff like Breaking Bad or Game of Thrones any day. I’ll go out and play tennis, golf, or go bowling before I read a book or play Monopoly. And don’t get me started on NASCAR. I think I’ve pretty well documented my love for NASCAR.
|Except this. I don’t like this.|
But like anything, there are aspects of sports in general that are really awful and I completely understand why people like my brother thing they’re the dumbest thing on the planet. After all, if you break it down, stuff like basketball and football and soccer are really stupid. You take a ball and you do whatever you legally can to put it in your enemies end zone, basket, or net. It’s stupid, but it’s a good way to pass the time and divert your anger and energy into something not so Third Reichy.
I remember when players would score a touchdown and do an original dance. Guys like Chad Johnson and Terrell Owens were entertaining simply because you never knew what they’d do once they scored. Then something happened. The NFL overlords stripped the celebration down to the most benign of events. Was the touchdown dance ridiculous and completely unwarranted? Of course. After all it’s a grown man in tight pants celebrating the feat of catching a ball and running a certain distance. We marvel at special needs children and toddlers for doing the same thing. But it’s the principle of the matter.
|Because why not?|
Now the NFL has turned to concussions and protecting players at all costs. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard any NFL player other than a quarterback talk, but they don’t sound like the brightest people. So giving them a state of the art helmet and the permission to hit someone with it isn’t the best idea. Now, the NFL has limited their target area to a smaller area and people still don’t understand why concussions still happen.
I don’t know who anyone is kidding here. It’s common sense in anything – if you keep hitting your head, you’re going to knock yourself stupid eventually. I don’t know why people are so shocked that older players are developing brain damage and mental illness by the time they’re 40. And everyone’s acting like the players are innocent. NO. If you sign up for baseball, you have a chance to take a ball to the face (in more ways than one). If you sign up for soccer, you have a chance to take a cleat to the dome. If you sign up for football, you have the chance of getting knocked out. If you end up special it isn’t entirely someone else’s fault. You have to take some, if not most, if not all, of the blame.
I like structure. I like matching colors (even though I don’t really know what matches). What I absolutely don’t like is this new trend where uniforms are all one color (minus a little trim) or look like they were stitched together with whatever fabric the company could find. College uniforms are the biggest culprit.
|There are even worse examples floating around the interwebs.|
It’s the ones that are all the same color that bother me the most. What’s the point of having letters and numbers on them if they’re the same color as the actual jersey? It makes no sense. We live in an era where our televisions are capable of producing more colors than we’ve even discovered and our eyes can even detect. Why on earth are we limiting the colors of our uniforms?
|Why? Seriously. Why?|
OK that’s my Queer Eye for the Straight Guy moment – back to being annoyed with real things.
Another problem I have with the Angels (since I’ve already blasted them for their uniform) is their entire name – The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Anaheim is a distinctly different city from Los Angeles. It’s 30 miles away and takes 3 hours to get there no matter what time of day you go because traffic there is awful.
An even greater offender is the San Francisco 49ers, whose new stadium is in Santa Clara – 43 miles away from downtown San Francisco. Other offenders include the Dallas Cowboys and Texas Rangers, who both play in Arlington (20 miles away); the Washington Redskins, who play in Landover, Maryland (9 miles away); and both New York NFL teams who play in a stadium in New Jersey (14 miles away).
These minor atrocities, however, can be overlooked by the worst sporting entity that has ever existed…
Where do I begin? The god awful sleeved uniforms? The horrid Christmas uniforms? The fact that they cater to the same 10 teams (out of 30)? The fact that after every foul, even if the player pulled out a gun and shot the guy, looks at the ref like they didn’t do anything?
Or what about the fact that the final 2 minutes of an NBA game takes 45 minutes? What about the fact that you can’t do anything without a foul being called? Why can’t we go back to the 80s when NBA players beat the hell out of each other on a nightly basis and it was part of the game? Now you can’t even look at a guy after you dunk on him or you get a technical.
Or what about guys like Russell Westbrook who I hope to God are trolling us all by wearing the most ridiculous outfits to press conferences?
|I think the uniforms were better.|
It’s why college basketball is better. But the absolute worst part about sports is..
I love ESPN. But even I have to admit that nearly every program outside of the 15 minutes of SportsCenter where they actually do highlights is a gigantic waste of time. 75% of the programming on ESPN that isn’t a live broadcast of a game is retired athletes and sports journalism nerds arguing over stats or why one guy played like crap the night before or who’s better than who. It’s really stupid.
On one hand, you have guys like Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayliss who have a 2 hour program devoted entirely to arguing over the most pointless matters. But we as guys who enjoy sports soak it in. It’s like a real life, unscripted soap opera. The other part about sports reporting is how they get the content from the players themselves. I don’t know at what point in journalism school you learn to ask these questions because I didn’t get that far before I realized it was an awful way to make a living, but the questions these reporters ask to the players are so slanted they allow the players to come up with the most generic, non-informational answers ever. Examples are provided in this video.
It may be to my and everyone else’s benefit that I didn’t make it as a professional athlete because I would take the questions and come up with ridiculous answers that the reporters can’t plug in to their cookie-cutter articles.
Interviewer: So John, you guys had a tough night out there. What happened?
Me: It was a Saturday so we weren’t really feeling it. We like to think of weekdays as our work days and we like to rest on weekends like the rest of the country.
Interviewer: But today is Wednesday.
Me: OK some of us were drunk. It’s legal. What do you care?
Interviewer: There’s increasing speculation that there is a growing rift between you and the front office. Is that true?
Me: Probably. He only wants to offer me a $100 million contract. I’m easily worth $200 million. He’s a turd.
Interviewer: How will you adjust for the next game?
Me: Well we’re going to try, for starters. We might warm up before the game. That seems to help.
At some point they’d either have to ask better questions or just stop interviewing me altogether. Regardless, the way things are now is ridiculous. Just show me more live games and highlights of what I missed. It isn’t difficult.