Saturday, July 21, 2012

You silly people will watch ANYTHING! (The "I Guess It's Time I Try To Do An NFL Preview" NFL Preview: The St. Louis Rams)

Here is what the sports world thinks of you, a living breathing human being:

You will pretty much do anything to kill an hour.
That's the message you get from this story about there being a professional Ultimate Frisbee league coming to Madison, WI, a story that gave me about a thousand new things to think about, those things being:

A.  People really still play Ultimate Frisbee even though it is 2012? 
B.  People get paid to play Ultimate Frisbee?
C.  This is a popular thing in the city I live adjacent to and I didn't even know it?

The answers being:

A.  Looks like it, which means that all kinds of 1990s things are able to be brought back including Zubaz, which the Buffalo Bills' pro shop is proudly hawking on Twitter,   and which I own a pair of.  I can't wait for Hypercolor to make an appearance again, so that I know when I'm feeling hot by the color of my shirt.

B.  Looks like it, although according to this ABC story, the total amount of pay is up to the owners.  Hopefully, they're not owners like the Arena Football League team owner who took his players out to Olive Garden and then fired them all.  I mean, how insensitive can you be... Olive Garden?  Have some kindness, man.  (Their soup is watery.)  (That guy was still nicer than the Patriots* owner who allowed a player to be cut on Super Bowl Sunday, leaving the guy a few hours short of playing in the biggest game of them all, and forcing the guy to pay his own way home.)

That ABC News story, by the way, says the professional Ultimate league is the "first," which I find amusingly suggestive of the idea that there might someday be a second.

C.  Looks like it, although perhaps the Madisonian love of Ultimate is a bit overstated by the reporter, and possibly accurately estimated by the owner of the team who says in article that, in terms of coming up with money to pay for the team

"It just takes enough to pay for the stadium, the uniforms, the cost of travel and give the players a little something... People in Madison love something to do. I brought my kids out to a farm to see some baby goats and 500 people were there paying $7. If I can't match that, then maybe I'll just invite some baby goats to the field."
 Not many sports franchises dare to dream they will be as big, on the entertainment scene, as baby goats

The thought process behind that quote, though, is instructive: People in Madison love something to do. That's why you'll go to the Ultimate Games, people (in Madison, at least): You're bored, and need something in front of you.

I wouldn't, I guess, have such a problem with the quote if it were "People in Madison love fast-paced sporting events," or "People in Madison love exciting displays of athleticism" or "People in Madison love seeing round discs floating horizontally among men with their shirts off," or something of the sort.

But just something to do?

You're comparing your sport to "Eh, I guess I've got nothing else to do."

And speaking of things you'll watch just because they're there,

On to the RAMS!

What I Know About Them Without Researching: The Rams have as their new head coach that guy with the moustache who used to coach at Tennessee, Jeff Fischer.  I have a love-hate relationship with Tennessee; I've forgiven them for the "Music City Miracle," because the lifespan of a sports grudge is at most five years or you're a loser who needs something important with his life, and since forgiving Tennessee I had come to respect the way they ran their team and their organization and how it was very efficient and kept coaches and players around and was a model of a good system, and then BLAMMO! IT WASN'T and Jeff Fischer was out and Vince Young was driving around with a gun and did you know that Steve McNair was dead? Because I did, I guess, but I forgot and then Sweetie had to remind me.

That's what I know about the Rams.  That and they were really really bad last year and not so great the year before, but, hey, Sam Bradford! He was a highly touted rookie quarterback and they can't HELP but do good in this league because college success always translates into NFL success.

**cough cough ahem AndrewluckRGIII cough cough ahem**

Other than that, I have no idea what to expect from the Rams.  Should we assume they'll be any better this year than they were last year? Definitely not.  What reason have they given you to think that? Jeff Fischer is a fine coach, but he's got a terrible team.  They'll be 2-14.

What Somebody Else Said About Them:  Deadspin recently mentioned that Gregg Williams, who previously coached the Buffalo Bills into the ground before moving on to turn the New Orleans Saints into the football equivalent of an El Salvadorian Death Squad (I'm sorry, Drew Brees, I know BountyGate cheapens your Super Bowl ring the way VideoGate tainted Brady's, but that's life. You shouldn't have put up with your teammates' cheating) is still being celebrated by the St. Louis Rams, the people who hired him before the NFL decided people shouldn't be allowed to hire him:

Coaches from the St. Louis Rams, the team he was tapped to defensively coordinate before being suspended indefinitely, made appearances at the event and talked up Williams.
Two Rams assistants — Joe Bowden and Clyde Simmons — came in for Williams' tournament Friday. Simmons said he has no doubt Williams will coach again in the NFL, possibly next year.
"Absolutely," Simmons said. "He's too good of a coach and a person."
That's all well and good. The respect and admiration of your colleagues will go a long way in convincing people you've changed, but Williams needs a silver bullet.
 And, if you're thinking "Hey, all the stuff you say about the Rams is really about some other team,"
 well, you're right and that tells you what to expect from the Rams this season.

 What 1980s One-Hit Wonder Song Best Exemplifies The Rams This Year?

The Clapping Song, by Pia Zadora:

I almost shouldn't pick this song because I love this song far far more than I would ever, could ever, love the Rams.

In the pantheon of songs that have dances associated with them - -the Macarena... um... probably others... how is The Clapping Song not a staple at weddings and reunions and what not?  It's got everything: Clapping, some sort of dance associated with it, Pia Zadora?

Until this moment, looking up this song, at random, I had forgotten entirely about Pia Zadora, who I think I used to think was sexy (I did) and now, I'm not even sure if she's alive.

(I'm not the only one who's unsure: go to Google, and start typing I-s-p-i-a-z-a-d-o-r-a and when you get that far the number one suggestion will be Is Pia Zadora alive.)

(She is.)

"The Clapping Song" was originally released in 1965 as a follow-up to the song The Name Game, and that shows how hard it is to trap lighting in a bottle of monkeys or whatever, because having made sure everyone everywhere forever would constantly think Ron Ron Bo Bon Banana Fana Fo Fon Me Mi Mo Mon Roooooon at the worst possible moments

("Do you, Ron, take this...")

The writers of that song were unable to then get people to Clap Rhythmically, too, although they gave it a shot, which is more than you can.  Have you ever even tried to write a hit song?  Well, then, shut up.

(I have.  It's called The Big Mouth Frog Blues and you can hear it here.)

(I'm available for weddings.)

(But only as the entertainment. I'm already married. Sorry, ladies, this ship has sailed... on a sea of leftover pizza.)

Pia Zadora's version hit the charts in 1983, but the song was also covered by the Belle Stars, whose only other claim to fame was having the only good song on the Rain Man sound track, and by Gary Glitter, who managed to make us all have uncomfortable feelings whenever we hear Rock & Roll Part II because it's an awesome song but, well, you know.

But the point is, Pia's cover wasn't even the best-known or best-made cover of this song.

Prior previews:

Indianapolis Colts.

Want to do a preview of your own team? Hit me up on Twitter!


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