Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Final Countdown: 15

Just when everyone thought Brett Favre’s career was finally dead and he had resigned himself to making crappy commercials for Wrangler jeans and some lawn mower company I can’t think of, he makes a return to the NFL so he can play for 10 games, then realize he’s too old and lead the Vikings to a 1-5 finish down the stretch. I wrote about this back in May, arguing that Favre is a one game improvement over the two-headed monster that is Sage Rosenfels and Tarvaris Jackson, but is a massive increase in false hope for Vikings fans. But what we can’t argue about is that Brett Favre needs to go away. Forever. I don’t want to see him play, I don’t want to see his stupid commercials and I don’t want to see the inevitable interview with someone from ESPN who asks him a variation of the question “Why did you come back?” 45 times. I’m tired of this selfish asshole clogging up my TV.

So, unlike yesterday’s post and most likely future posts, today’s has a running theme. Just like Brett Favre, the following 15 people/places/objects/ideals/principles all need to go away forever. I’m sick and tired of them, and in some cases, I just hate them. Now, I give you number 15 in the countdown.

1. 11:30 games
After the announcement of ESPN’s eleventy billion dollar deal with the SEC, my first thought was, “Finally, the end of 11:30 JP games!” Well, we all got the end of the JP games, but the 11:30 games are here to stay. This timeslot sucks on a variety of levels, mainly that it’s way too damn early and is usually boiling hot. It should be that if I want to watch football before noon, then I can watch Northwestern and Wisconsin play in the daylight before it gets too dark and everyone there freezes to death.

2. 11:00 games
CBS likes to pull this sneaky shit at least twice a season. Hey, guess what, your team is going to be on CBS in front of a national television audience! Really, what time? 2:30 or 7:00? No, sorry, we’ve got you at the 11 AM slot. BURN IN A FIRE, CBS.

If your team happens to draw this game time, your day is ruined. You have to get up way too early, wolf down food and drink before 10 AM, bake in the sun and when it’s over, you have to go take a nap just so you can stay up for the ESPN night game, which of course causes you to miss the end of the 2:30 game and that’s usually the best game of the weekend. And I’m talking about all of this as if your team won. It’s a million times worse if you lose. Nothing good comes from an 11 AM game. Also, whoever thought this time was a good idea needs to go away forever.

3. The South Will Rise Again
If you’ve never been to an Ole Miss home game, you may be unfamiliar with this. Before and after each game, the Ole Miss band plays what is known as “Slow Dixie,” which is just a slightly altered version of Elvis’ American Trilogy. When the song gets to the part where Elvis sang “His Truth is Marching On,” many, many, many Ole Miss students and fans will replace that with “The South Will Rise Again.”

It’s hard to put into words how stupid this is. First, it seems to indicate a longing for the time when the South was an agricultural power. Have you seen how predominantly agricultural societies do in the world? Answer: NOT WELL. Second, it’s basically admitting that, “Hey, we’re down right now, but we’ll be back.” Back to the point where we want to start another Civil War? Yeah, those were some good times. And third, and most importantly (aside from possibly offending an entire race, but let’s stay focused on football here), doing this opens the door for other schools to use this against Ole Miss in recruiting. We’ve done a lot of stupid shit at Ole Miss when it comes to race and recruiting and we don’t need to keep adding to that pile.

4. The annual coaches’ meetings in Destin
This is not to be confused with SEC Media Days, but is in fact a completely separate meeting where the same topics are discussed. Perhaps real business is actually conducted here, but nothing groundbreaking ever gets reported, which leads me to reading the same boring articles I’ve read since the end of last season. And I will read all of them.

5. Les Miles’ top hat
What the hell, LSU? You can’t get Nike to make a hat that doesn’t sit 14 inches off the top of his head? Surely he doesn’t prefer his hat that way. If he does, I like my bet that this is his last year because only a crazy person would knowingly do that. Or an 85-year old man.

6. Dave Neal
This may be a little unfair to him because he’s not awful, but the mere sight of Dave Neal on my TV at 11:30 on a Saturday morning is going to cause some flashbacks to the old JP days while Platoon music plays in the background. I’ll immediately think of Dave Rowe and his inane ramblings. “If you’re LSU, you want to score! If you’re Ole Miss, you don’t want LSU to score!” And one of my favorites, “The quarterback sneak is the worst play in college football!”

It would be best for all of us if the memories of that painful era were erased.

7. Jorts at Florida football games
Let’s get this straight, JORTS ARE AN EMBARASSMENT TO AMERICAN SOCIETY. Stop wearing them. If you enjoy the comfort and feel of denim so much, go ahead and extend that feeling all the way down your legs.

8. Banjos at Arkansas games
Just kidding. I’ve never seen one there, but I wouldn’t be surprised. However, getting rid of those plastic hog hats would be a good move.

9. Ole Miss playing on Thursday nights
Look, I enjoy Thursday night college football as much as anyone. It gives you something to look forward to all day at work and is a great way to get ready for the weekend. However, I don’t want to see my team playing in that game. The short week, the potential that your weekend is ruined before Friday and that unless you live within a couple of hours from the stadium, you have no chance to make it to the game. I’m all for everyone else’s teams playing and providing me with entertainment, but no more Thursday nighters for Ole Miss.

10. Gary Danielson
Yes, he’s smart, insightful and often picks up on things most people would never notice, but he’s also a smug asshole. He has a handful of favorite players he constantly talks about whether or not they’re actually playing in the game on which he’s commentating, he doesn’t admit when he’s wrong and finds one storyline to the game he continues to mention whether or not it’s actually important at that point in the game. Todd Blackledge, you selfish bastard, why did you leave us?

11. The guy at South Carolina who told me the Gamecocks had the best pregame atmosphere in the SEC
I don’t really want him to go away, just to go to all the other schools in the league and find out that there is more to tailgating that setting up a table in a parking lot of a biscuit store. If you’ve never been to a game in Columbia, it’s a lot of people milling around in parking lots next to the fairgrounds. Although I didn’t go in one, some people rent (or maybe own) these caboose train cars and do their pregaming there. I’m sure it’s much more fun than standing in a parking lot, but you’re still surrounding by parking lots and old sheet metal buildings.

12. Day games before October
One day something like 25 old people are going to drop dead because it’s 1:30 and the heat index is over 110 degrees. Seriously, that may be what it takes to end the stupidity of afternoon games in the South before temperatures start averaging in the 80s.

13. Melvin Smith
Imagine a coach that is a member of a staff that in its last three years went 8-27 and brought probation upon the football program, and was a member of another staff that went 21-38 in five years. One would think his services would not be in demand, at least in a major college football conference. Well, that doesn’t apply to Melvin Smith. The “Bagman” offers services that go beyond coaching and into a charcoal-ish area of recruiting.

Yeah, every school cheats, but not every school has a face identifiable with cheating. Allegedly of course.

14. Walmart jerseys
Walmart provides this country with good products at reasonable prices. Unfortunately, they also like to make money in every conceivable way possible, which has lead to an explosion in generic team jerseys throughout the SEC. Some enterprising businessman, who also may have a side business in taxidermy and cable repair, approaches Walmart and convinces them they can produce team jerseys that look like a certain team at a really low price. Although these jerseys only look like an authentic team jersey in that the color shade is in the neighborhood of the authentic one and the school’s name is on the front (and sometimes the back), Walmart readily agrees to buy the jerseys from the businessman at three dollars a piece and orders 20,000 shipped to places like Muscle Shoals and Batesville where the jerseys are sold for $9.74 a piece.

Well this crap needs to stop. Mike Slive, please tell Walmart that 98% of SEC fans don’t want to buy or see a knock-off Eli Manning or Brodie Croyle jersey six years after both graduated. Plus, the mesh look isn’t very flattering when those who wear these jerseys don’t elect to wear a shirt underneath it.

15. Cowboy’s parole officer
Assuming he has one. And after watching his videos, I’m certain that he does. I’ll guess that he has been in trouble for a variety of alcohol related offenses, cable theft and once had a loose association with a crystal meth ring. Again, just a guess.

Anyway, I want his parole officer to go away so he can get released from house arrest, which would finally allow him to make a visit to his Mecca, Tuscaloosa. Of course, you’d have to point it out on a map to him, just like the other 1.5 million Alabama fans that live and die with the Tide, but are a little unsure of Tuscaloosa’s location.

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