(fuck the mountain west and their stupid tv deal. that game
should’ve been one everyones tv. it was awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
i’ve been watching sunday night football for twenty minutes and have seen closes-ups of cheerleader’s breasts twice. like close-up close-ups. but football is hyper-sexual.
sunday night football is sexy
i’m not a scientist, but i’ve read books written by people who claim to be. so this is how i see it: football probably isn’t that different than mating rituals that like every other species that reproduces sexually. for humans, because we’re a group species, it’s a contest of smarts and strength that helps determine the status of the different members of the group except also the status of particular groups relative to one another.
but it’s more complicated than that. there’s the commercialization of the game which then plays into status markers unlike anything i see in the rest of the natural world. in many social circles, football knowledge, fandom and/or the purchase of football apparel (i just saw that commercial where they show some ideal steelers fan’s living room and it’s decorated with steelers everything – framed steelers jerseys, steelers throw pillows, steelers chair, steelers telephone) are important markers of male-dominance. (they just showed another close-up of a cheerleader’s breasts.) but i’m not sure how well football-watching status translates into an increase of mating opportunities.
i remember monday night football—all that butt-slapping really messed me up
but the sexuality of football is ambiguous. or maybe i mean androgynous.
i watched the heat/nets preseason game. played in paris. paris, france.
devin harris is awesome. douglas-roberts had a nice stretch in where he made 3 consecutive floaters. beasely played well but the commentators couldn’t help but critizie him the entire game. shit like he’s immature, he has character issues, he’s a disruptive presence in the locker room and he doesnt have the basketball iq to be a star. why is everyone at espn hating on beasely?
when tim legler — the color analyst for the game — wasn’t trying to convince viewers to hate beasely, he was talking about himself. it was when i injured my knee this and when i played in europe that. and he doesn’t let his kid watch shawn marion because his jump shot form is so unusual. even though marion is a solid shooter. what is the deal with the myth that there is only one correct way to play basketball. (maybe this has to do with that basketball iq.) i mean reggie miller, arguably one of the best shooters in nba history, had an unorthodox shot.
and are they serious about adam jones? he got in a small fight with his bodyguard and he needs to get suspended for that? that’s the nfl’s most pressing issue? and matt jones doesn’t even get suspended for having 6 grams of coke? and this is espn’s lead story going in to sportscenter? the bodyguard isn’t going to press charges and the cops said the incident doesn’t even warrant a report and the nfl is going to investigate it?
there was a saturday day last week. during the late afternoon, i flipped through some college football games but all i could find were commercials. 4 games were on, but they were only showing commercials. at that moment, i felt like i should give up on professional sports. which would also mean giving up on this sports blog.
i mean, i could write blogs defending josh howard’s pot-smoking and his refusal to support the national anthem. or on how ridiculous the criticism of vince young is given that all he does is win football games. and maybe i should. or should have. both those stories are already a month old and forgotten about. or remembered only in the negative.
the truth is, professional sports have started to depress the hell out of me. so instead, i’m going to write about my near-death experience.
we picture facts to ourselves
clif has an extra ticket for the utah/oregon state game which he passes on to me. the game starts at 7 and i dont get off work until 7; i arrive late and by myself. i take the train up to the stadium. due to malfunctions, the train ride takes 45 instead of 15 minutes. while our train is stopped, someone starts talking about the football game most of us are on our way to. he is roughly my age but twice my size. maybe he use to play football for utah. he looks like brian urlacher, or that guy in those 50s war movies that looks like brian urlacher. and he has an intimidating voice.
-are we waiting to get off the train to raise the flag for utah?
i dont understand what he means. what flag? a symbolic one?
-do you bleed red? do you believe in red?
this question he asks repeatedly to different people on the train. i bury my head in my book hoping that he avoids asking me that question. i mean, do i believe in red? would he and i even have the same definition of red?
we cannot give a sign the wrong sense
i finally make it to the stadium. there are people in red everywhere. do they all believe in red? i make my way to the section that corresponds with the number on my ticket. i’m nervous walk up the stairs to my seat by myself. i grab a hot-dog instead. i can’t believe how many people are here. i’m anxious and eat my hot-dog faster than i should. then i realize i cant breathe. it’s just like in field of dreams. i look around for some ghost — some dead former football player who gave up his career to be a pediatrician but misses football so badly he haunts the stadium — to materialize and give me the heimlich maneuver. i mean, abdominal thrusts. wait. first i need to make sure i’m choking enough to require abdominal thrusts. what are the steps to dealing with choking? encourage the victim (that’s a loaded word) to cough. so cough. i’m trying, i tell myself, but it’s not helping. no. don’t panic. are you breathing at all? i try breathing. am i breathing? maybe? it’s too hard to tell. focus. try to take a breath. are you breathing? barely, but i doubt i’ll be breathing much longer. i look around at all of the people in red. should i ask one of them to give me abdominal thrusts? is this how i die? not in a car-crash, but near the concession stand at a university of utah football game with a piece of hot-dog stuck in my throat? wait, can’t i do abdominal thrusts on myself? just listen. try coughing. if that doesn’t work then we can move on to abdominal thrusts. i never imagined this would be the way i died but i’m sure everyone who dies thinks the same thing. i turn to the garbage can i’m next to and give coughing one last try and just like in field of dreams i cough out the piece of hot-dog stuck in my throat. there are people everywhere, but i dont think anyone noticed i almost died.
logic must look after itself
the football game was amazing. utah, with their perfect record on the line, goes down by 8 with 2 minutes remaining. their offense has looked out of sorts all second half. four plays later they’re in the endzone. the two point conversion is good and the game is tied. oregon state gets the ball back but goes three and out. they punt and utah has less than 30 seconds to move 20 plus yards for a chance to win the game on a field goal. i dont remember all the plays on that last drive. i think they throw to the sideline for a 5 yard gain. then johnson scrabbles out of the pocket and drops it off to one of the running backs for a first down. the next play they throw down the middle for 15 or 20 yards. they run the ball to the right hash-mark and call time-out with 1 second left. louie sakoda nails the 30 something yard kick to win the game at the end of regulation.
on the drive home i’m greg reminds me that this one radio station here played louie, louie for two straight weeks. that may be one of the best songs ever.
i finally found out why, in televised tennis, they never show both the replay and hawk-eye (or spot shot or whatever corporately-sponsor name they come up with). i used to think it was because spot-shot was wildy inaccurate and probably rigged. now i know it’s because spot-shot is mildly inaccurate. but more importantly, spot-shot collects more data about the incident (by incident, i’m talking about the information relative to the spot the ball touches) to reach it’s conclusions than our eyes or our brains or even our video cameras.
hawk-eye takes information from a number of cameras, probabilitizes (which i’m using to mean assessing the probability of) things like trajectories, spins, velocities and then creates a simulation of the flight of the ball to locate where the ball hit. this means spot-shot, because it interprets more data, can know things about the location of the landing we, even with our eyes or our brains or even our video cameras, cannot perceive.
take for instance the 2007 final at wimbledon between federer and nadal. nadal smashes a shot to the baseline. federer, believing it to be out, doesn’t make a play. the chair umpire rules out. the video replay rules out. however, hawk-eye says in.
the reason: due to it’s superior information gathering and processing, hawk-eye knows that that ball hit with that power will, on a grass surface, compress and skid for about 10 centimeters. so while the all of us, even our video cameras, witnessed the ball as out, spot-shot knew, in its heart of hearts, the shot was in.
so the question is, should who should interpret our sport rules? humans or god or given that god isnt around, the next best thing, super-sensitive computers?
i’m watching college football. ecu is beating west virginia 24 to 3 which, i hear, the people of greenville really needed given the hurricane that just passed through town. you probably saw it on the tv. the hurricane, i mean. hurricane gustav.
previewing tim tebow
this is what i learned:
not only is he the first sophomore to win the heisman trophy, not only is he the first player to score 20 plus touchdowns running and passing in a single season, not only is he the first player to have at least 1 rushing and 1 passing touchdown in 14 consecutive games, not only is he a phenomenal athlete, but he’s a remarkable human being as well.
here’s the proof the tv gave me:
when other guys are going to exotic locals on spring-break, tebow is off to the philipines (which, i guess, isn’t exotic) on a mission with his dad to build hospitals. (tebow;s a christian, right?) oh. also, he refused to be featured in playboy magazine. they were doing some article about possible preseason heisman canidates. and tebow refused.
back to the game
there are all these rules in college football. like you can’t celebrate. ever. and they changed the time-keeping rules. to make it harder for comebacks. to keep the games shorter. to give us something to talk about.
check out the ecu coach’s sunglasses.
now it’s the post-game
i dont get the set design. there’s too much information. that guy’s tie matches the computer-chip background. there’s always information scrolling along the bottom and down the side and in the background. and it’s all the same stuff. repeated over and over and over. they’re talking about the byu/washington game. some guy on washington scored a touchdown with 2 seconds left to cut the lead to 1. but he was flagged for excessive celebration. 15 yard penalty. then the extra point is blocked. washington loses by 1.
quotes from the post-game
-a pac-ten (officiating) crew who threw the flag on a pac-ten team! ( he seemed suprised by this.)
-what do you think?
-i think it was a strike out . . . the officials should never decide the game!
-that was a travesty of justice! that wasn’t celebration; that was joy!
(there’s a lot of exclaiming)
-a point of emphasis.
-a sever tactical error.
if you didn’t get a great big sports boner (girls included) this weekend then you missed out on pure pleasure. the spanish karate kid (nadal) wasted everybody in tennis. and tennis was awesome. somehow i don’t think the us open will have as much of an emotional effect on me as wimbledon did (it was probably the most fulfilling emotional experience of my life) but you never know. it’s amazing that there are actually some american men in the next round. which is good because that means they’ll show mens tennis over the williams sisters. i was getting tired of watching women play (sorry), except that there are some major babes this year. remember the final is next sunday. moving on to college football. the university of utah is awesome! they beat michigan. michigan! in michigan. awesome. i noticed the nationally televised game had a lot of praise for utah. it seems utah and byu will probably be the best non major conference teams this year, which may mean nothing. but it could mean…something. and their (hopefully) perfect seasons up until they meet at the end of the season will be memorable. maybe. seems like they both play some weak teams. and now the best part about sports….DVRs! that’s right. and HD. wow. sports look so cool. and i am writing about it. oh:
“stop copying us.” i hate that i put a commercial on here. but i told brian i would blog about it. kill me.
Tags: dust, softball
for posterity’s sake, i’d like to mention that sunday was one of the greatest days of my life. i got up at 7:30a to watch the wimbledon final between rafael nadal and roger federer. during the first rain delay, i went up to brian and gavin’s house. there’s was a big party, basically. i ate some waffles and then the rain delay was over. we watched a riveting 4th set. i couldn’t believe it. really. then there was a brief rain delay in the 5th set, and i played ping pong outdoors. which is nice because of how much space you have, but also kind of weird because you have to deal with the wind. i typed in “ping pong wind” into google, but it thought i said wind, not wind. like a wind up toy ping pong, pictured below.
when tennis started again, we went back inside and watched a fantastic 5th set that i was sure would spill over into the next day. but by some miracle, nadal broke federer and served out to win. there were so many incredible shots by both of those guys. i was really glad to see federer playing so well, especially considering that according to djokovic, federer was vulnerable after his french open loss.
the main point is that this was more than just the best sporting event i’ve ever been a part of. for probably the only time in my life, i wasn’t disappointed by the athletes i love. i don’t get disappointed in them. disappointment isn’t the right word. but it does make me sad when they don’t play as well as i know they can. in basketball my favorite teams always lose, and they usually lose early. same in everything. but not with this wimbledon. if i’d planned wimbledon out, it might’ve been really close to this. i was glad to see all the early upsets: blake and roddick in the 2nd round; djokovic choking in the 3rd; sharapova in one of those early rounds. and i was really excited to see nadal and federer reach the final so convincingly. nadal only lost a set en route to the final and federer didn’t even drop a set.
so wimbledon is supposedly the most sacred tennis event. i don’t buy into that, but according to people, this wimbledon victory for nadal is the best tennis result spain could hope for. and now spain is trying to do what boston couldn’t… win the championship in 3 major sports. the patriots lost to the giants in last year’s super bowl, so only ended up with 2 championships: the red sox in baseball and the celtics in basketball. basketball, baseball, and football are arguably the most popular american sport and boston is one of the favorite cities, despite a history of racism. but they only got 2 out of 3. i’m trying to think of the top sports worldwide. obviously soccer is number one, and spain just won the uefa final. i think tennis is one of the top 3. and nadal just won two straight majors for spain. maybe basketball is becoming more of a world sport. at least the nba is trying to convince me that it is every chance they get. so all spain needs to do is win basketball in the olympics. and spain will be better than boston. i’m pretty sure most people already think spain is better than boston. except maybe scorsese. that departed movie was awesome.
i found these spanish commercials last week. rafael nadal and pau gasol. the premise is that they’re going to be given these really great watches. but they have to perform some task. after they fail, the lady tells them that they can only have the watches if they give up sports. then they hang out on the beach, making margaritas and telling girls what time it is using their sweet watches.
not the best commercials. i wish nadal would only ones like that commercial from last year’s us open. which reminds me, i’ll be very interested to see how he fares in the us open. he’s on like a 26 match winning streak but has never been able to get it done on hard courts. so maybe this will be the year.