Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Season's Over. What Else Is On?

So baseball season is over. Sure, there’s a silly World Series going on, but do you really expect me to watch a matchup between the guys that just eliminated the Tigers and the team that beat Detroit in the ’06 World Series? I’d rather watch my cat get euthanized.

So what do we do now? Spring Training is a long time away. Four months is like…a year from now, you know? Sure, there’s the Winter Meetings, free agency, arbitration, etc, etc, zzzzz…but out of all that, you get like three newsworthy days and a bunch of B.S. speculation in between. Speaking of which, those of you that think the Tigers are going to sign Jose Reyes are crazier than Jim Leyland bringing in Schlereth with the bases loaded. If they do, I’ll start a Don Kelly Fan Club.

Yes, it’s this time of the year that we are forced to seek other forms of sports as entertainment while baseball is away. And today, I thought I’d take a look at our other options available until pitchers and catchers report…and why none of them are decent enough alternatives to my favorite sport of baseball.

Yes, the NFL. America’s true national pastime, nowadays. Sure, I enjoy my football, but not as much as the rest of America seems to. I think ESPN and the other networks have helped to deaden my love of the game with their constant ridiculous coverage of every inane thing happens on and off the football field. “Tom Brady cut his hair!” “Tony Romo screwed up again, LOLZ!” “Big Ben leads the league in rapes!” I don’t care. “Handshake-gate” between Jim Harbaugh and Jim Schwartz is the latest “who gives a fuck” moment that just WON’T DIE. Quick, someone ask Brett Favre what he thinks about it!

And sure, he NFL is a fun distraction on Sundays, but in my profession of bar management, it brings in the dregs of society acting at their worst. Groups of ignorant, front-running Steeler and Packer fans screaming over every two yard gain like drunk 17 year olds on Spring Break is killing any love I have for the sport. Well, them and the wit of Peter King and Tony Dungy on NBC. They make Terry Bradshaw seem intelligent.

And for the first time in over a decade, I’m not playing fantasy football this year. The commissioner of the league I always do kinda ruined the league for me with silly scoring, new members that I despise, and a ridiculous entry fee. Attempts to start a new league this year were ruined by most of my friends being low-rent asshats. So, the one thing I had to enjoy about the NFL season while my team was on bye or down twenty points at halftime is no longer there for me. Screw football…it’s overrated.

I Root For: Chicago Bears

When I first got into the NFL, the ’85 Bears were the greatest thing in the world. Walter Payton and Jim McMahon were the coolest people that 8 year old Rogo had ever seen. I can still remember telling my mother that I wanted to spike my hair, wear goofy sunglasses, and sport a headband. I also remember her response of throwing a half-empty beer can at me and telling me that I was a mistake that had ruined her life. Good times…

Despite somehow making the NFC Championship Game last year, the Bears are a .500 team most years and the only unsure aspect of their season this year is if quarterback Jay Cutler’s season will end in diabetes costing him his foot or his terrible offensive line costing him his life.

College Football
I don’t get you people that get so crazy rooting for a school that you were most likely too stupid to go to. Sure, I root for my team, too, but I’m pretty low key about it. I’ve seen more fights start over NCAA football than all the other sports combined. And nine times out of ten, it’s OSU/Michigan drunken mouth-breathers.

During one such game, tables were tipped over being used as forts while people threw bottles at each other. Once, a Texas fan started a brawl that ended with my 95 pound female bartender taking a glass to the face leaving her permanently scarred. Over college effing football. Blows my mind.

Plus, with the idiotic BCS ranking system, approximately five teams are in the running for the championship every year. Every school (except mine) runs a dirty program. Lee Corso does the same tired schtick of wearing a dumb mascot head every week. And basically, the only reason college football exists is so Vegas and bookies all over America can make money.

I Root For: Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Yeah, I know. If there was one team of mine that I wish I didn’t like, it’s the Irish. People call them the Yankees of college sports, but that’s ridiculous. The Yankees actually win. I do think their “higher than thou” attitude and the way the media fawns over them is ridiculous, but you can’t help who your team is. That stuff is decided early in life and there’s NO going back when you’re an adult. Otherwise, you’re a bad fan and should be beaten to death with a shovel. It’s the Fan Code rules.

All my friends in school when I was a kid were all into the Ohio State/Michigan nonsense and were always bugging me to choose a side. Reluctantly, I chose Michigan just to get people to leave me alone. They had cooler team colors. Then, I saw Rocket Ismail play for the first time and I was a Golden Domer for life. As an additional bonus, I get to root against OSU and Michigan every week. I enjoy pissing off as many people around me as possible. On a related note, I have few friends…

Well, this might not be an option this year with the lockout they’re having. The most amusing part of said lockout to me is the fact that no one gives a damn about it. The NFL threatened a strike and the country was up in arms. No NBA and no one even notices. That’s how far the game has declined in the past decade or so.

I think I grew up in the best time ever to watch the NBA. Magic, Michael, Bird, Hakeem, Malone, Barkley, Wilkins, and so on. Today’s game has Kobe, LeBron, and a bunch of schmucks that couldn’t sink a free throw if their lives depended on it. They travel on every possession. I know I sound like the old white guys that I usually mock here, but the NBA isn’t the same game as the one I grew up on and my interest in it isn’t half of what it used to be. And judging by the lockout, I’m not the only one.

I Root For: Chicago Bulls

My friends were all into the Bad Boys Pistons when I first started watching the NBA in the late ‘80’s. And the hopeless follower that I was, I joined them at first. I loved Joe Dumars, James Edwards, Vinnie Johnson, and Dennis Rodman. But the more I watched those Pistons, the more I grew to despise them due to two players: Isiah Thomas and Bill Laimbeer. Here I was rooting for Detroit, which felt nice since I adored the Tigers, but I couldn’t stand how dirty Thomas and Laimbeer were. Along with John Stockton, they were the dirtiest players I ever saw. Drove me nuts, and though my friends thought it was great to root for the cheaters, I turned my allegiance to their chief rivals at the time, the Bulls…again, just to be a dick to my friends.

Of course, they had Michael Jordan, which made the transition easier. But it was the hard working and underappreciated supporting cast of Horace Grant, Bill Cartwright, Scottie Pippen, and especially sharpshooter John Paxson that won me over to the Bulls team. And a year after I had my first badass Bulls Starter coat, they began their impressive run of championships. It was great timing on my part, although my dickhole friends all accused me of being a bandwagoner, even though they knew the real truth. Jerks. I’m glad their bodies were never found…

The other joy I got out of being a Bulls fan was the constant supply of big, uncoordinated, slow, terrible white centers they had. Will Perdue, Luc Longley, and Bill Wennington stick out in my mind. The reason? That was me when I tried to play. I was tall, so everyone wanted me to play basketball. Meanwhile, I was the drizzling shits. My average line in a game was something like 5 minutes, 0 points, 2 rebounds, and 5 fouls. I was that guy. In fact, my group of pickup basketball friends used to call me “Bear” for my tendency to maul anyone that was dumb enough to drive the lane on my goofy ass. Seeing “my kind” on the court being ignored by Jordan made me smile.

NCAA Basketball
What a long, boring season this is. Full of games that don’t mean a damn thing. This sport is pointless until March when it becomes EFFING AWESOME. Any nose-picking jackoff immediately becomes a basketball expert once that tournament bracket comes out. Holy hell, I turn into Digger Phelps, despite not having watched one game all year. Of COURSE Old Dominion’s going to win in an upset, you moron!

/Old Dominion loses by 58


I Root For: No one.

I’d feel foolish saying I have a favorite team when I don’t watch any regular season games. Gun to my head, I guess it would be the Irish, but that’s only because of my love of their stupid football team. But if you are a Duke fan, you are an insufferable prick. That’s just a given in life.

I’ve tried to get into hockey. I really have. But I last about a week and then forget about it until I’ll hear that Todd Bertuzzi attempted to murder someone again and I’m reminded that the season’s still going on. Playoff hockey’s cool, though. I can get into that. But 80+ games of trying to root for players with fifteen letters in their last names (twelve of them vowels) is just too much for me. Sorry.

My favorite time in hockey was 1994 when the Rangers broke their “curse” and beat Vancouver to win the Stanley Cup. I was really into Mark Messier at the time. But that was also the year I discovered Pavel Bure and decided he was the coolest player in sports not named Higginson. Dude was amazing on the ice and later banged Anna Kournikova behind Sergei Fedorov’s back. Nice.

I Root For: Colorado Avalanche

Quite simply, Red Wing fans make me want to choke a newborn. When it comes to being loud, rude, ignorant, and front-running assholes, Wings fans are second only to Steeler fans in professional sports. Again, this comes from me working in bars MUCH longer than any human should. I know you’re not all bad…don’t go throwing a dead eight-legged water creature at my house. But they say one bad apple ruins a bunch. Well, dozens of bad apples make me want to burn down every Granny Smith tree I ever come across.

So, I root for the Avs. Just to piss off Wings fans. Also, your famous ex-captain that you all love so much? His secretary is/was a bitch. I almost threw her and her friends out a couple years ago when they came into my bar with the Stanley Cup and acted like they were better than everyone. Obnoxious twat. I also told that “Keeper of the Cup” guy to go fuck himself. That was fun.

We’re constantly reminded that UFC is the new fastest growing sport, but it just doesn’t do it for me. Two sweaty, shirtless dudes laying on each other for WAY too long until one lands a lucky punch isn’t my cup of tea, I guess. I respect the hell out of the guys and wouldn’t want to accidently spill my drink on Chuck Liddell’s Affliction shirt, but it’s just not my thing. Plus, the hardcore UFC fans all look like roided up date rapists.

I Root For: Brock Lesnar

Brock’s a beast and he uses some of his ex-WWE personality to rile up the fans. I enjoy that. Personality goes a long way with me in my athletes since most of them in every sport are so boring. That’s why I root for Phil Coke despite him not being very good. The guy makes me laugh. And Brock Lesnar makes me laugh either by taunting the UFC crowds or beating some poor dude to death in 30 seconds.

Pro Wrestling
“Durrr, it’s FAKE!” No shit. But anyone that doesn’t think that the majority of pro wrestlers aren’t talented as hell athletes is an ignorant ass. But the WWE of today isn’t the same as the glory days of the late ‘90’s with The Rock, Steve Austin, and the Attitude Era. No, it’s more geared to kids now and written by mostly ex-soap opera writers creating a boring, predictable, stale product.

I enjoyed Hulk Hogan as a kid. I got into the storylines and crazy spots of the late 90’s. But today, I’d rather watch a dog lick his balls than watch John Cena badly act his way through a promo written by an ex “Days of Our Lives” writer. It's not a good sign when one of the only tolerable active wrestlers is The Miz, a guy that's most famous for being on "The Real World".

I Root For: I don’t watch as much anymore, but when I do, I get into CM Punk. He’s a lifetime fan of pro wrestling and wants to change how the business is presented. Sadly, as long as Vince McMahon is in charge, it’s going to remain a silly circus product geared toward the booger-eaters of our society. Don’t believe me? Go to a WWE event. Eighty percent of the crowd looks like they starred in “Deliverance”.

Speaking of “Deliverance”…

I hate NASCAR. Forty rednecks driving 500 miles in a circle while thousands of racist hillbillies in the crowd get wasted and not pay attention? Sorry. They make the WWE crowd look like the Princeton debate team.

I Root For: The end of the sport. I just don’t get it.

Do they play in winter? Is the MLS still around? MLS is up there with the WNBA in the running for the professional sports organization that the least amount of people give a shit about. Soccer is a boring sport that is only liked by kids under ten, hairy Europeans, and Kurt Mensching.

I Root For: Riots.

So yeah. Nothing competes with baseball to Your Party Host. It’s going to be a long, cold winter as I wait for JV, Big Mig, and the boys to return from their time away from the game.

I guess I could spend more time reading books or spending time with my family.

Ha…right. Football it is, I guess.


H2OPoloPunk said...

"do you really expect me to watch a matchup between the guys that just eliminated the Tigers and the team that beat Detroit in the ’06 World Series? I’d rather watch my cat get euthanized."

You articulated my exact sentiments perfectly.

I'll go back to playing MLB2k11 with my beefed-up team.

Timothy Joseph Forbes said...

Hey man watch a Premier League game sometime, real Soccer is worth the watch. The MLS sucks becuase its just a bunch of Europe league castoffs and untalented Americans.

Trout Jefferson said...

"I Root For: Chicago Bulls"

Rogo, you could have said "I am a Nazi" or "I'm a registered sex offender" and I think I would have more respect for you than being a Chicago Bulls fan.

You're damn lucky you're a Tiger fan and funny.

Jay Hathaway said...

Man, I remember that '85 Bears team.  I rooted for 'em, too.  The Super Bowl Shuffle?  McMahon?  Mike muthafuckin' Singeltery?  The Fridge?  Forgetaboutit, they were fun to watch.  I was 7 years old and living in western PA at the time.  Even at that age, I could sense that the Steelers fans all around me were dickholes.  Shortly after that, I moved to NW OH, and became obsessed with the Tigers and baseball, so I didn't get too much into football until a few years down the road, when I watched Barry Sanders do his thing with the Lions.  As for basketball, I was (and still am) a Bad Boys fan.  I used to do a mean Lambier impersonation when we played.  I would actually call it out when I got the ball--"Here goes Lambier," followed by me heaving the ball on a line drive at the rim, then elbowing the nearest player.  Good times.  Also, I DO love hockey, but I live to play it more than watch it.  Still, watching Ray Borque hoist the Stanley Cup for the Avs in 2000 (?) was one of the greatest things I've ever seen.

StretchTB said...

I refuse to acknowledge the World Series this year. F*$%ing Cardinals and the f*$%ing Rangers. F*$%.

But you left out Boxing.. There's actually a lot of good, talented fighters fighting right now. Lots of good fights coming up. UFC guys are good athletes, but aggressive cuddling isn't something I like to watch.

But I don't really pay attention to anything but the Tigers and Lions. Don't understand the obsession with college football or basketball. And hockey blows to watch on TV. It's fun live, however.

Guitarin_goalie said...

LOL.  Love the still shots for each sport.  Awesome.  

As a Wings fan since the late 80's (before they were good) and a fan of your blog since I was introduced to it, I'm surprised by this: 
"When it comes to being loud, rude, ignorant, and front-running assholes, Wings fans are second only to Steeler fans in professional sports."Not that I disagree with you about a lot of Wings fans, but that you of all people didn't put Yankees fans up there with Steelers fans. 

SRogo said...

I guess what I meant to refer to here is groups of fans. One-on-one, fans of any team aren't much different. But when you get groups of Steelers and/or Wings fans together, that's when I always have my issues. To be honest, I've never been unlucky enough to be surrounded by a group of Yankee or Sawx fans. If I was, I'm probably sure they would be #1 on my annoying list.

lost_in_sauce said...

As a Southerner, my knee-jerk reaction is to defend NASCAR and its fans. Then I remember that I hate the "sport" and that you've pegged the NASCAR fanbase exactly. Generally a bunch of loud, stupid, pasty drunks with beer and Moon Pie guts and 'GIT 'ER DONE' t-shirts. Down here, it's not so much that we grow them that way as they make a choice to be rednecks. Around the time we get to high school, half of us decide to live in a dipshit fantasy world as described in Garth Brooks and Alan Jackson songs. The rest of us get jobs.