Yankee Love

September 27, 2006 at 6:15 pm | Posted in baseball, clif | 1 Comment

There are a lot of problems I have with baseball (and when I say baseball here, I am referring to Major League Baseball, not necessarily the game itself), and I’m not just talking about the steroid issue; we all know that baseball isn’t the only sport that has that problem. (This guy knows what I’m talking about.) The game doesn’t translate well to television, they play so many games that each individual contest is pointless, and the World Series always airs on Fox in lieu of the Simpsons (which was a more serious issue when the Simpsons were worth watching).

No, the problem I have with baseball is that I can’t turn on sports radio or television, pick up a sports paper, or go to a sports website (excepting this one) without hearing how damned awesome the Yankees are. Of course they’re awesome, they have the most money so they can buy the best(looking) players.

Major League Baseball doesn’t employ a salary cap or revenue sharing so teams and owners can spend whatever they can afford on their players. The Yankees can spend nearly $75 million more than the second least frugal team and 13 times what the thriftiest team spends. Their payroll is more than the bottom five teams combined, and they have five players that make more individually than the entire roster of the Marlins collectively.

They’re basically an All-Star team and as such should never lose and should never be praised for winning. Yet, somehow, people think it’s a major accomplishment that they win a whopping 60% of their games while teams in similar circumstances (take USA basketball) get criticized for not completely dominating their competition. It’s total crap.

I haven’t heard a reasonable justification for the competition-killing lack of a salary cap, though, in all fareness, I usually change the station/turn the page/stick my fingers in my ears and scream whenever baseball comes up. However, every time I’ve heard an argument defending baseball against its many faults, it’s usually a tradition-based defense. I’m all for tradition in sports when it comes to things such as team names and uniforms. But I draw the line when traditions interfere with game structure (are penalty goal kicks in soccer traditional? they suck), season outcome (as is the case with baseball), or are just stupid.

Unfortunately, the powers that be will never agree to revenue sharing or a salary cap. In the interest of competitive fairness (yeah, right), maybe MLB should install some kind of handicapping system. Maybe the rich teams could begin the season several games behind the rest of the teams based on their payroll. Or, for instance, the Yankees could spot the Royals so many runs whenever they play. Make those pretty boys earn their money.

i heart andy roddick’s tennis heart and regular heart

September 25, 2006 at 12:34 pm | Posted in fight, tennis | 4 Comments

I know i know there has been way (way) too many Andy Roddick posts lately. But it’s because he’s been in the news dude. I watched Andy play tennis for nearly 5 hours yesterday. Oh okay i switched back and forth between other shit on my fight tv and went to a women’s soccer match and i got some sun to. The soccer match was good. The weird thing about the Davis Cup is that in the 5th set they don’t do a tie break, so you gotta win by 2 games. The record for the longest 5th set match at Davis Cup was set yesterday. Suck on it Sampras. Tursunof, Roddick’s opponent finally finished him off 17 games to 15. Andy sure does have a lot of tennis heart even though he let down the USA squad, but not the country because we could care less about tennis (and soccer). I have a hard time with the Davis Cup because i don’t really care. I like clay, i really do. I thought long about how hard it must be playing on clay. I imagine it’s probably a lot like playing tennis on drugs or alcohol. The ball is always bouncing weird, not doing what it’s supposed to. I encourage playing tennis on drugs and alcohol, at least until you’ve decided to take it serious. Now i’m off to watch some more fight tv…

who’s gonna say no to a free suit?

September 22, 2006 at 12:18 pm | Posted in brian, fespn, football (american) | 1 Comment

so reggie bush accepted a bunch of money while an “amateur” athlete. bfd, breaking archaic and unethical institutional rules isn’t stealing, domestic abuse, substance abuse (i’m talking about steroids not marijuana) or murder. but if you watch espn or listen to espnradio, you’d wonder which is worse.

last week i listened to the herd (i think that’s what it’s called) or maybe the dan patrick show (or both) and watched part of cold pizza. each show spent any non-advertising time talking about the so-called reggie bush scandal. on espn, advertising is not limited to commercial breaks but bleeds seamlessly into the fabric of the shows (which i guess is seamless fabric?), and, taking this tired analogy further (or farther), it’s nearly impossible to get blood out of fabric. this is why i stay away from analogies and metaphors. but if you don’t believe the line between espn programs and their advertisements, just watch–interview question are brought to you by beer companies, sets are built by home depot, stats are provided courtesy of american express or old spice. i’ve even seen breakdowns of football plays using animation from madden 2007. the contents of the shows are actually commercials and the commercials resemble the shows.

it seems like i’ve already gotten off subject, but i think this blending of show and commercial informs espn’s coverage of the so-called reggie bush scandal.

back to the so-called scandal:

so everyone on all the previously mentioned shows kept talking about reggie bush and laying the blame squarely on him. the question isn’t, given the bullshit situation of major college athletics, how should players be fairly reimbursed, but how satanic is reggie bush for dirtying the purity of college athletics. they want to strip him of his heisman and possibly have him executed. maybe they should have dick cheney shoot him in the face. everyone defends usc and makes excuses for the agents giving offering him the money. not a single commentator suggested that the problem may be with the ncaa. i hate joe horn, but he’s one of the few people i’ve heard state the obvious about the so-called reggie bush scandal: “the man [bush] earned millions for that school. that much is undeniable.” but i want to take this a few steps further. not only did bush make a shitload of money for usc, but also for the ncaa, the television networks that cover college football and the companies that advertise with them. reggie bush, however, got his tuition waived.

college football isn’t really a sport. like professional football, it’s primarily entertainment. imagine you’re favorite tv show. (mine’s not grey’s anatomy.) imagine, unlike campus ladies, that it’s wildly successful raking in millions of dollars for the network and the advertisers. then imagine that the actors–the reason why anyone watches the show–get almost nothing. it’s total bullshit.

ps, i read that marcellus wiley–a football player who moonlights as a commentator for nbssports–wrote a blog defending reggie bush and suggesting some kind of a trust fund for college athletes, but nbc has purposely made this blog impossible to find.

saints vs. jaguars 2005

September 21, 2006 at 12:03 pm | Posted in aaron d.w., football (american) | 4 Comments

do you persons remember this from last year?

i just wish i could hear chris berman highlighting this play on nfl primetime without having to listen to anyone else from nfl primetime.

p.s. they missed the extra point and still lost.

better than that one italian goal

September 18, 2006 at 1:30 pm | Posted in aaron d.w., fespn, football (soccer) | 3 Comments

i don’t have the fox soccer channel anymore. i could go up to brian’s during the summer and watch it whenever i wanted, but premiership hadn’t even started yet. so i watched re-runs of games while i could and now that it started, i can’t watch a thing. i can only keep track of the live scoring on the bbc’s premiership webpage.

coolest player ever didier drogbaso you can imagine how excited i got when i saw thatdidier drogba had scored a goal against liverpool. and not just because he’s the captain of my fantasy team and i get double points when he scores. i got excited because he’s my favorite player in unamerican football. he’s even the wallpaper on my computer — ask anybody. anyways, i was glad that he scored but i was curious how it happened. then brian called. he told me that it was maybe the goal of the year. so i found a video of it on youtube.

this morning i got online to read about soccer. to my surprise, there was a yahoo article on the chelsea-liverpool game. surprised because they provide almost as bad of coverage of premiership football as espn. so i started reading the article. it started out fine, talking about the goal: “The Ivory Coast striker settled a long ball from Frank Lampard in the 42nd minute, then swirled and drove a shot past Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina.” but then i got to the third paragraph and stopped reading. “[tiger] Woods led the cheers from a front-row seat at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge stadium.” who the eff cares if tiger stupid woods was at the game? how is that a key-point of the match? how does tiger woods cheering matter in any way? and who cares if he’s bff with shevchenko? i don’t. because i think shevchenko is a ball-hog. tiger probably would be one too, if he played soccer (not that he could last 8 minutes, but they’d be 8 minutes with zero passes). so i’m glad they’re best friends. anyways, is that the only reason that yahoo did an article on the game? because idiot-face tiger being at the game makes it news worthy? that is so ridiculous. i hate yahoo sports and i hate tiger woods.

maybe that’s the only reason that yahoo even (sort of) covered the us open. nike must’ve told them that they were planning a promotion for the final where tiger would attend and cheer for whoever else was sponsored by nike (most likely federer). i watched the final and it was sweet. but i kept throwing up in my mouth because the one announcer (not mcenroe) kept talking about tiger woods the whole time. about how he and roger federer have so much respect for each other because they’re both dominating their sports and how it was federer’s dream to meet tiger woods and how when they met it was like they finally found someone who understood what it’s like to be at the top and how they’re probably going to be penpals and best friends. who cares about tiger woods? seriously. i’m glad he lost last week. it makes me happy. i like it whenever he loses. that’s the difference between him and federer. roger doesn’t ever lose. so if anyone was dying to meet anyone, it was tiger dying to meet federer. because he’s way cool and way good and who wouldn’t want to meet him. so tiger probably went to nike and told them that he’d give them all hand jobs if they arranged a meeting. and the people at nike probably accepted and decided that it would be a fantastic marketing stunt. so they pressured federer into meeting with tiger before the championship and they paid off abc so that they’d show as many close-ups of tiger woods as they did of roger federer. p.s. nice hat, idiot.

tiger idiot-face woodsthat’s why i wish andy roddick had won. because he would never agree to something like that and mandy moore would never let him. not that i blame federer. just that i blame nike for ruining sports and tiger for ruining my life. and i blame yahoo for only liking american sports. if you’re going to cover a soccer game, yahoo, do it because drogba scored the sweetest goal ever. don’t do it because your boyfriend tiger woods happened to be at the stadium.

they’re called hyperlinks, dude, and they’re all over this thing

September 15, 2006 at 2:46 pm | Posted in brian, tennis | 3 Comments

andy roddick: he’s no allen iverson, but he makes better commercials than allen iverson. this year’s us open commercials had been a disappointment with two exceptions: sharapova’s nike commercial (specifically because it was so un-nike) and the roddick v pong commercial. then roddick made it to the finals. during the final, lexus finally replayed all the roddick commercials from a year ago. unfortunately i could only find one online. why are they hiding the rest? but i think you only need to see one to understand why these commercials may be some of the best commercials ever. those roddick commercials are like anti-commercials: they have nothing to do with cars or tennis. they’re so funny and confusing (or funny because they’re confusing). i love those commercials.

but then my paranoia sets in. fact: lexus commercials aren’t made for their entertainment value; they’re made to sell cars. why is lexus trying to sell me, or someone like me, a car? what kind of market research did lexus do to identify my specific demographic and to know what kind of commercial would work on us (me and my demographic)? i’m guessing they read my myspace profile. ever since fox bought myspace i’ve been worrying about this kind of thing happening. i have another idea of how lexus figured me out, but i’m worried to reveal it for fear of looking too paranoid.

but i am paranoid so here it is:

one day i decided to see if someone had already dedicated a website to me without me knowing. typing in brianwood.com transported me here. at first i was surprised how much information there was about me; then i realized the website was for another brian wood (not to be confused with the brian wood who painted this or the brian wood who looks like this). after browsing through the website, my paranoia set in. this other brian wood was a lot like me–we both need corrective lenses, we’ve both had scratched corneas, we like some of the same movies, music and books. a little freaked out about having the same name and a number of shared(?) experiences with this other brian, i was blown away when i saw the t-shirts he designed.

you’re probably like, “state-shirts? who fucking cares?” well, i do. a few years ago i treid to collect state-themed shirts from all 50 states plus washington dc since i already owned one and puerto rico since guy was wearing one the last time i saw fugazi (the photo linked is of the actual puerto rico shirt). my logic: if i owned all 50+ state-shirts i could plan my wardrobe months in advance–i’d wear them alphabetically, in the order they were accepted into the union, geographically (probably west to east) and so on. the possiblities were endless and i’d never waste another hour in the morning deciding what not to wear. i aquired 22 different state-shirts before giving up. imagine how i felt when i found this guy who shares my name and many of my experiences and makes state-shirts–state-shirts i would have bought if i was still pursuing my state-shirt goal (but i wouldn’t have paid what he was asking). i know i’m paranoid but this is fucked up. later i found out that this other brian wood didn’t love star wars episode iii and realized we weren’t anything alike.

i know none of this has anything to with roddick or tennis, but, taking my sports writing cues from nesbitt–a paid sports-writer for foxsports–i’m spending half the piece telling jokes that only i get (and possibly aaron and the other brian wood who may actually be me in the future or me in a kind of twin earth called twearth where everything is the same except i’m older and a successful comic artist).

back to roddick:

while researching this piece about roddick, i came across a number of helpful websites. this guy thinks those lexus commercials are stupid. what i think is stupid: calling your blog miscellania from josh. this guy thinks they suck too but he names his blog after himself. what an idiot. i found this interview where roddick admits to watching porn with his brother. i think this is a joke, but i can’t prove it. if it’s a joke, andy roddick is obviously cool; if it’s the truth, he might be kind of creepy. well, that depends on what they were watching.

actually, i need to establish why i was researching all this stuff about roddick in the first place. roddick is one of my favorite tennis players for two reasons: (1) the previously mentioned lexus commercials and (2) because he’s sponsored by lacoste rather than nike. and because he’s such a hunk. here’s what i don’t like about roddick: jimmy connors is his coach. i mean everyone sees that this is a publicity stunt. all anyone could talk about during the final was how connors-like roddick was playing. i didn’t buy it. roddick played surprisingly well–even looking like he might beat federer late in the third set–but that had nothing to do with jimmy connors and everything to do with mandy moore.

unless you’ve been in a tennis/mandy moore coma for the last few years, you know that mandy moore and andy roddick were an item affectionately called (m)andy. it was after she dated fez but before she dated scrubs. (m)andy broke up a minute ago–like 2004 or something. andy was the one who put a stop to (m)andy. he just couldn’t handle the hollywood thing. after the break up, andy’s tennis went down hill. clearly he regretted the break up. sure he had to put up with the hollywood thing, but they were totally in love. he made a mistake and there was nothing he could do about since mandy was dating zach braff. after a number of disappointing tennis tournaments, roddick took a short break to recover from a sore back which was a euphemism for a broken heart.

mandy moore was pretty broken up about the break up too. in this interview i read, when asked how she’s doing since the (m)andy break up she responded, “i’m okay. i’m good.” i nearly cried when i read her answer. it was devestating like an elizabeth bishop poem. anytime you repeat yourself like mandy moore did it’s because you’re trying to convince yourself of something that isn’t true.

but things are looking up. mandy moore broke things off with zach braff. the claimed an age difference. i’m no mandy moore but i’d break up with zach because he’s pretentious. then, in the middle of july, (m)andy were seen together eating lunch. allegedly she couldn’t keep her eyes off him (but who could?). after that roddick won the cinncinati open and placed second at the us open. in his post-final interview, roddick credited much of his success to a special friend. dusty thinks he was talking about agassi. someone named tracy thinks he was talking about sharapova (who he is not dating). but i know he was talking about mandy moore.

andy roddick is back and he’ll continue to be the wind beneath my wings.

frisbee masters – disc shaped sweetness

September 14, 2006 at 12:33 am | Posted in gary tijuana, misc | Leave a comment

i’m blessed with two talents. one, extreme athletic ability. two, amazing mastery of video editing. don’t shit your shorts when you see how rad this first video came out.

It’s All Over When the Fat Lady Freaks Out

September 11, 2006 at 9:24 am | Posted in football (soccer), whitney | 3 Comments

I went to another sibling’s soccer game. It was a while ago, but I took good notes (much to my own detriment, because I ended up getting hit in the face with the ball. What can I say, I’m dedicated to This Guy…play it cool…).

I noticed the major difference between male and female sports (at least at this young age) is the vernacular. The word “sorry” seems to come up a lot more in girls’ peewee. For example, “Sorry! I missed the ball!” or “Sorry! You were going for that, but then I got in your way and we ended up colliding!” or “Sorry, other team! I took the ball away from you and I knew you were so excited to make that winning goal! I’m sorry to ruin your day and possibly your entire life!” I fear for these girls. Compared to the boys’ frequent use of “Come ON!”s instead of displaying any sort of sympathy to their teammates’ feelings, I think the girls might suffer from low self-esteem and will definitely suffer in the workplace.

Another major difference between boys and girls soccer is their use of their bodies. Girls seem to be much more hesitant. This might have something to do with how apologetic they are to get in the way, but it also has to do with being terrified of the ball. I honestly saw someone duck under the ball instead of head it. A few girls turned their back on it and get a ball to the butt. Butting the ball, as you can imagine, gives you much less control than kneeing/heading/chesting/etc. Your 13-year-old butt, with all its unexpected and unfortunate curves, is far less predictable.

My favorite (for writing purposes) and most detested (for human purposes) fan at this game was a lady sitting on one of those tiny lawn chairs that lazy people bring with them when they know they have to wait in a long line. And…I don’t know how, or want, to put this delicately….she was fat. Like, way huge. Like, overwhelmingly obese. And she was sitting on the sidelines screaming at everyone. She screamed at the players – “GET TO THAT BALL! DON’T BE A SISSY!” – she screamed at the fans – “GET YOUR CHILD OFF THE FIELD!” – and she screamed at the ref – “HOLY CRAP! WHO’S PAYING YOUR SALARY? GIVE ME A BREAK!”. [all direct quotes] Again, this woman didn’t appear to have a child on the team. Later my sister informed me that she was indeed related to a player, but said player wasn’t there that day and the woman came anyway. She’s their number one fan that they all wish they didn’t have (including, I’m sure, her daughter). She made me pray (literally. I prayed to God) for a win with good calls so we didn’t have to see her horrible overreaction at the end. She was one of those people that always make remarks under her breath and then turns to you like you should respond but you ignore her completely so she just repeats the remarks louder. Luckily, she finally found a comrade to talk to. A man that looked like the boss from the British Office and was always cracking stupid jokes. Fat lady would say something about the ref and Office guy would make a joke. They made a great team.

“We” (Eagles) lost. Fat lady kicked her chair and stormed off.

why do they only show americans?

September 11, 2006 at 7:56 am | Posted in brian, misc | 1 Comment

there’s a lot to hate about the winter olympics: the snow, the snowboarding, how everybody pronounces the name of the city however they want, the uniforms, the ice-dancing, hockey, remembering how much it sucked when the olympics were here in slc, the coke commercials, the visa commercials, the home depot commercials, and on and on. here’s my biggest problem: what’s the deal with only showing americans? there are other people competing at the olympics.

i like to watch the biatholon but it’s never on tv. so i’m usually forced to watch speedskating. that one american is my favorite (i’m not doing any research for this article but you all know who i’m talking about). he’s so funny in interviews. he never looks at the camera and gives like two word responses. cbs (or nbs) wants to play up his story–the first black athlete to win an individual medal in winter olympic history–but he refuses to play along. but he still should grow out a beard.

The art of sports writery

September 9, 2006 at 10:30 am | Posted in clif, fespn | 9 Comments

I don’t know how many of you regularly read sports articles on online sports sites such as foxsports or espn (I’m assuming most of you), but for those of you that don’t, let me tell you a bit about the writers. They’re almost all completely awful. They load their articles with inside jokes and pop culture references about the shitty reality tv shows they watch. They love similes like my sister loves Hanson. Did that last sentence seem irrelevent, retarded and a little embarassing? Good. Then you’re starting to understand the sort of tripe you have to bear with when reading an online article about the upcoming football game, the basketball draft or the U.S. Open.

I think there is some sort of simile-per-paragraph quota that sports writers have to reach in order receive their paychecks. And their comparisons usually contain pop culture references that have no bearing on the subject on which they are writing, shed no light the point they are trying to make, and make you worry a bit about what the writers do with their personal time. They might go something like this: “Saying Eli Manning is as good a quarterback as his brother is like saying pre-nose job Ashley Simpson is as attractive as Jessica.” Alright, that wasn’t a good example, but I don’t pay much attention to pop culture (especially to the bits that would make me, a grown man, seem creepy) and I’m not drunk/high right now. It’s only 10:00 am.

Anyway, I just read the best (worst) example of the kind of article I just described. It was this one which, eventually, is a bunch of predictions for the week 1 NFL games. I’ll give you a minute to read it. Done? Okay. WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT? I can’t believe Foxsports actually posted this thing. What’s the deal with the Betty Ford joke (please, God, let it be a joke) that takes up half the article? Anyway, if you got through that part and still had the stomache to continue, this guy (Andy Nesbitt), spits out example after example of the requisite jokes and similes most sports articles contain. He really is a pro. In his short blurbs on each game, he manages to hit on the Big Three of the sports simile trifecta: the Irrelevent (see Cleveland vs. New Orleans and Dallas vs. Jacksonville), the Creepy Pop Culture (see Atlanta vs. Carolina and Philadelphia vs. Houston) and the Emberassing Similes (see Baltimore vs. Tampa Bay and Indianapolis vs. New York Giants). And, in one master stroke, he lumped the Holy Trinity of Sports Similes into the rare, vomit-inducing Godhead Simile (see Minnesota vs. Washington). Wow. I’m in awe that people like Mr. Nesbitt get paid to write this stuff. But, I take solice in knowing he’s not being paid enough to buy an ipod (see Denver vs. St. Louis).

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