November 16, 2006

ESPN, Christmas and Tom Emanski






Last night was one of those times that I think many of you will actually agree me on something that pisses me off to no end. It's an old subject, and a one-sided one...but it needs to be addressed.

So last night, I'm watching Bowling Green play Miami in one of those freaky mud-bowl games that are mesmerizing to watch. I have no vested interest in either team, other than the fact that I hate Bowling Green's hockey team, and I've been there several times. Other than that...I just wanted to watch a football game before the season finale of South Park came on. (Which was brilliant again by the way.)

So as I'm watching this game, I hear May, Spitting Lou Holtz and the others start to break down the Michigan vs. Ohio State game this weekend. OK, fair enough. It's #1 vs. #2, and this late in the season, it's obviously as good as a National Title semi-final. I get that. But was it REALLY necessary to find alumni of Ohio State and Michigan on the sidelines of the Bowling Green game to ask them about what they thought about Saturday? Was it necessary to send the poor bastard sideline reporter down with a hot microphone in the wet mud, just to hear what some assistant coach thought about his days as a Buckeye linebacker? Is it too fuckin hard to ask that you actually DESCRIBE THE GAME you are watching, instead of staring College Gameday 4 days early?

I understand it's two sub .500 MAC teams. I understand it's Wednesday. But what an absolutely slap in the face it was for the players and alumni (I don't assume they had fans, judging by the 300 western Ohio losers who actually made it to the game) for ESPN to drone on and on and on and on about Michigan vs. Ohio State? If I wanted 3+ hours of Michigan vs. Ohio State coverage, I'd read the MLive.com or Dispatch.com. If I wanted to hear Lou Holtz talk about how tough it was to prepare for Michigan in the 80's, I'd watch ESPN classic. Is it too G*D damn hard to actually tell me there's a fumble on the field?

ESPN, their related myriad of outlets and talk radio have nearly ruined organized sports for me. The CONSTANT, never-ending hype that people like Lou Holtz or Lee Corso or whomever cake on...DAYS in advance, drown me with so much information...I don't even fucking care anymore by the time the game rolls around. The information age...cable, websites, blogs like this and others...have given us so much data associated to a single event, that it has completely become distracting to the actual game itself. Don't get me wrong..football is the worst, because of the time between games...but the #1 reason I don't watch baseball anymore is because it's so easy to follow by looking at the standings on the internet. If I want to watch a game, I can go to Yahoo or MLB.com or wherever and get highlights. Who wants to waste 4 hours watching a Devil Rays vs. Baltimore game when you can watch the highlights in 2 minutes? (That's even if you cared that much)

I know you find this hard to believe, but I would actually go out and PLAY baseball twice a week, rather than hear Peter Gammons or John Kruk or some other guy who couldn't get any other job...lecture me on the complete breakdown of the Toronto Blue Jays' depth at left-handed long reliever.

At this point..I almost don't even want to watch Ohio State vs. Michigan. Just make the hype stop. That's all I ask. (And it's only Thursday)

********

Speaking of overdone subjects...when did the Christmas shopping season extend to nearly Halloween? I was at the mall the other day, and had to fight through 15 feet of fucking tinsel just to get to a shirt rack. IT IS THE BEGINNING OF NOVEMBER...is there really that big of a need to tie in shopping to gift giving that you need to manipulate the calendar that much?

When does it end? Day after 4th of July Christmas blowout? More catchy names for the 6 month shopping season? Again, I blame TV and ESPN. I'm sure they're involved somewhere down the line. They nearly destroyed civilization with 'Playmakers', why not destroy capitalism as well.

*********

Some pretty interesting discussion yesterday after mentioning that Nebraska doesn't really have a rival. JP of all people said something interesting to me on the comments page, that Nebraska fans actually need Colorado to be good again at football. This is exactly my point.

Rivalries make you care more about games. Rivalries give you a vested interest in what happens to somebody else. Why do you think I was watching TV last night (after becoming disgusted with the ESPN shit I mentioned earlier), rooting like hell for Oral Roberts' basketball team? Because they were about to knock off the mighty Jayhawks, and give their fans a punch in the gut. That's what it's all about to me. Rooting for your own team is fine and good, but there is some sort of unexplainable satisfaction in watching a group of people you dislike to go through pain.

Again, this is a concept I don't think Husker fan can possibly understand.

Just look at other sports as well. Most Husker fans all cheer for the same college football team, but their loyalties in other sports are all over the map. Some, like KOZN 1620 AM's Kevin Kuglar are huge Cubs fans, to the point where you want to kick in your radio. Others, have a huge tie with the Minnesota Vikings or Denver Broncos or KC Chiefs in football. Still others, are big Laker/Red Sox/Red Wings/Cowboys/Whatever fans. All of this is fine and dandy...because most of you didn't have a local NFL/MLB/NBA/NHL team to root for growing up.

I completely understand this..but I think that makes it that much more impossible for you to understand rivalry and hating the other team. For instance, let's say you're a HUGE Pittsburgh Steeler fan from "way back", because you had a keychain or a favorite sweatshirt or something as a kid. Even if you are a "big fan", how often are you going to run into a really lippy Bengal fan in Omaha? You simply aren't surrounded by the enemy the way I am, which is why I think my view is unique. (The same can be said for Bronco fan living in Kansas City, Missouri fan living in Lawrence or Florida Gator fan living in Tallahassee)

That's how I see it at least.

**********

Lastly, I got some flak on another board somewhere, because I stated that Chase Daniel looked nervous in Lincoln during the game on 11/4. I could tell he was nervous because all his passes were sailing high...much like in baseball when a pitcher is firing everything high when his adrenaline is rushing. (And thus, he throws pitches into the ground when he is tired.)

So one particularly annoying Husker loving assclown continues to argue with me that it's just stupid to think that when a baseball pitcher gets tired, he's consistently low. Thus, my theory was completely wrong. Over and over and over again...just as many of you never stop bulldogging me on one little point.

My answer to that is very simple. I know more about pitching than you. I'm not going to sugar coat it. I"m not going to lie about it. I'm not trying to be a prick about it. I've forgotten more about pitching while writing this post, than you will ever know.

Do you know how many different balk moves there are?
How many ways can you balk on a move to 3rd? To 2nd?
Do you know what a wheel move is?
Do you know the difference between a sidearm cut and a 3/4 cut?
Do you know how many major tendons make up the shoulder?
Do you know how hard you have to throw to make a splitter dive?
Do you know how much slower a change up will be?
What's the 90 degree rule?
When can you go to your mouth? (Trick question)

To the rest of you, I'm not trying to be a prick. I"m just telling you that I'll be the first to admit I'm a complete idiot about a LOT of things. I can't pick football games. I can't paint my living room without getting it everywhere. I can't figure out how to hook up my DVD player to my DVR. I can't make chicken wings on the grill without making them way too soft and slimy.

But as any friend of mine knows...I do know more than you about throwing a baseball. Trust me.

Sorry you all had to listen to that rant..but it needed to be said.

PS - When a baseball pitcher gets tired...his stride gets longer. Hold a baseball over your head (elbow cocked) and take a short step without moving your shoulder. Now take a long stride, without moving your shoulder, and tell me what happens to the ball. It gets lower. Lower off of your shoulder means lower out of your hand. When a pitcher gets tired, he needs to make a concerted effort to shorten his stride, and keep the ball high..thus maintaining velocity while his hips fly open. It's simple physics.

This would cost your kid $75 bucks and I gave it to you for free.

You're welcome.

11 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

AJ,

You're pretty knowledgeable about baseball. What is your history playing the game? This is seriously not a flame, I'm just curious if you played in college, minors, etc.

1:25 PM  
Blogger AJ said...

I played in college, worked in the minors, and coached a high school team for several years. I still play today in the local over 28 league.

I'd tell ya where, but I don't exactly need 50 phone calls a night, telling me what an idiot I am for "having no life", "badmouthing Husker fans" blah blah blah. Not smart from a safety standpoint.

I'm sure you understand.

1:30 PM  
Blogger AJ said...

There was a comment posted a bit ago...and as I was approving/replying, I got caught in the blogger scheduled outage.

You can e-mail me at huskerh8erblog@yahoo.com if you would like to ask your question again. Or repost it again...doesn't matter to me.

Sorry about that. Didn't want you to think I was dodging the question.

3:06 PM  
Blogger JP Anderson said...

Dear AJ,

You're pretty knowledgeable about football. What is your history playing the game? This is seriously a flame. I'm just curious if you played in the NFL, Pro Bowl, etc.

Signed,
Anonymous Ass Kisser

3:34 PM  
Blogger AJ said...

JP, you're a prick. ;)

Sincerely,
AJ - AKA Elvis Grbac

3:35 PM  
Blogger JP Anderson said...

I loved you at Meechigan.

3:44 PM  
Blogger AJ said...

I don't get why everybody hated Grbac in Kansas City. He wasnt' a great leader or anything..but he was fairly tough, and threw a good ball. He had horrible receivers like Andre Rison to deal with..what did they expect?

Sincerely,
Paul Hackett

3:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

aj,
did you play baseball at bellevue?

4:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking of you rivalry posts I heard that Norm Stewart wouldn't spend on red cent whenever they had to go play at KU or KSU. That he would buy all their gas, food, etc. in Missouri before they crossed the border and that after the game they would drive all the way to Missouri before they would stop to eat. Just so he wouldn't spend one penny in the state of Kansas.

Now that is truly hating your rival.

6:09 PM  
Anonymous bart said...

Good grief AJ and JP. Or should I say AJP... With all of this mutual respect, you've turned this site into a freakin' love fest.

In the last two days I've seen a couple of
; )
followed by a couple of reciprocating
; )

Winking is only allowed on www.match.com for crying out loud. Not on a Husker Hater Blog.

And then there is all of this 'comment' love. You're so smart, you're right, I want to see you in football pants... ; )

Please quit dating,
and get back to hating.

It seems like JP is actually AJ's alter-ego and now since the blog gets 2,000 hits per day JP's edge is slowly fading. Hmmm.
What is this the damn Phil Henry Show??

And AJ, if you are done ragging on Nubbie then why don't you pull KU basketball under the bus. You can't tell me that you hold Jayhawk fans in higher esteem than Nubbie. Go Golden Eagles.

6:11 PM  
Blogger AJ said...

My uncle played at Missouri, and had Stewart as a teacher for some classes. That hatred is genuine. Thus, the reason so many Mizzou fans loved him..and still do.

PS - AJP? Wow..that was pretty good actually.

PPS - No Bellevue. Warm though.

6:23 PM  

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