The state of over the air sports talk radio from my perspective. Yes, biased. Based on auditory observational skills the level of Sherlock Holmes ocular ones. AND I’m a real guy. Mostly. †
HOST – Hi! Jim you’re on WFAN with Mark ( Moose ) Malusis…
JIM – …yeah hey uh huh uh yeah uh first time caller, long time ummm er uh yeah hello? Oh hi Jim. Wha? huh! oh yeah I’m Jim. Hey Tony love your show. Huh? Oh ummm OK sure hi Moose. Thanks for taking my call. Love the… wha? oh yeah ummm a caller called with a call a few calls ago today. You know what I mean. Hello Moose—you there? The caller who called about the Jets—I mean the Mets. About how, you know, I mean ummmmm the the the call. The one when he said Charlie Manuel should be… Huh? oh yeah Jerry Manuel. Wha? no I haven’t been drinking? Ah uh er um you mean tonight? This morning I mean. Yeah I disagree. I think Jerry Manuel should be fired.
MOOSE – wow I wonder what he was on! [ other than the air you mean Moose? ] But he does have a point—the Mets have struggled all season due to unreal injuries, though they have looked better as of late. So who knows about next year. Bill you’re on WFAN…
BILL – Yeah um uh uh uh that last guy was uh um yeah. Hi Bill—I mean Moose—love the show. I think Charlie Manuel should be uh umm I mean about the Jets. Uhhhhhh I mean the Giants really kicked the Patriots as — ummmm butt. I predict they will go at least 10 & 6. Maybe 9 & 7. Or 10 & 6. If they do win at least 9…
MOOSE – Yeah only a pre-season game Bill. But things looking positive for Big Blue heading into week 1 of the regular NFL season going forward. I can’t wrap my head around predicting a record yet. I’ll be doing that next week. OK one more call before the 20/20… Jim from New Hyde Park you’re on the FAN…
JIM** – Hello Moose. Must be a full moon—heh heh heh.
MOOSE – I don’t know is it a full moon? I sleep all day, so…
JIM – I don’t know either, all my windows are painted black & I live in a basement apartment. But back to sports. I really think Jerry Manuel should be fired. AND Omar Manaya too. Plus the Wilpons should sell the Mets. To the Yankees.
MOOSE – ( silence for 10 seconds of dead air! ) Jim, how long have we known each other. From calling the FAN, I mean? Like 10 years! that is the most brilliant idea I have heard since I started working in sports! They won’t do it though hah ha ha.
JIM – As you know Moose, I am a lawyer. From Mars.
MIA [ sports reporter cuts in ] – It is a Full Moon, Moose.
MOOSE – Really? I don’t know I sleep during the day. OK we’re a bit late—here’s Mia Harris* with the 20/20…
† In case you’re wondering, I chose not to attack ESPN this time. Mainly because those aholes went 90% football talk in mid August. They suck.
* Mia Harris is attractive & smart, but she does need to work
** lots of Jims call—really–they do
Avoiding the news is a preoccupation of mine. This will not be an exegesis, satirical, tedious or otherwise on that subject. But it is a quick factoid, explaining that the Internet has virtually made it impossible for me to not see the headlines in some side bar. Even when I’m only reading the @#%&*! comics! That’s how I read the news today (August 20). Oh boy. . ..
While I often allude to a boyhood in the Bronx, NY, where I was born ( the hospital a block from Manhattan—which made all the difference ), for purposes of being clear about one point in this piece, I admit I graduated high school in New Jersey. That’s why I will now tell you about Stevie Butler. I went to high school with him and his older brother Brian—Brian and I were born a few days apart in the same year. Their parents had a general store, maybe a football field’s distance away from the school. See, if it were in the Bronx, it would have been called a candy store.
Due to the vagaries of life & my incredible smarts ( mostly incredible for the fact each year I seemed to lose an IQ point ), even though Brian and I were identical in age, I was a Senior, he was a Junior & Stevie was a freshman, as was my sister. The year after I graduated, I was in a band & the times they were a changin’. Their mother was my boss for two summers I worked for the Parks & Recreation Dept. Sadly, there was no colleague the equal of Rashida Jones.
So, there was a connection. Two years after high school, Brian & I went to sign up at the US Armed Forces Draft Board in New Brunswick together. Despite the well intentioned advice from Arlo Guthrie, we did not walk in holding hands & sing a chorus of Alice’s Restaurant, and then walk out. One, because we didn’t want them to think we ” were both faggots ( sic )”. Two, I couldn’t sing harmony to save my ass. Literally. The thread which ties my life to others is so unbelievable, it’s more suited for the novel I never intend to write. I can’t do it here. Which spares us all. For now.
In that era, most guys I knew had grown their hair long, mustache and/or beard optional. For authority figures, it was believed to be a solid tipoff that person was doing some kind of drugs. It may strain credulity, but at 18 ( some of this ground covered in a previous episode ) I chose not to smoke, drink or do dope. Maybe it was the Catholic training or maybe it was I just wanted to save all my resources for girls & music. This was also the year I met another person who played a major part in my music history. His name was David Sutch–he was larger than life, and his did not end well.
I’d see Stevie at gigs & parties, he was affable, generous and blunt. He did have an annoying habit of busting me for not going out into the world & examining every possibility, in every corner. My retort was I didn’t need to, I had an imagination. The irony of my relationship with him will show up later in this. Despite what my so called other friends & acquaintances, family too, thought then, I was out doing other things. It just wasn’t with that old bunch. As a new decade opened, I jointly started a unisex clothing shop in Flemington N.J. with a college buddy, and I’d met several girls from that Hunterdon County area.
A life long habit of personal high impact-short lived jobs began with that store. About a year after leaving the store in a clash over business styles, I heard one of the girls Rita, had been hit by a car, while walking. Her injuries were extensive, but by the time I got the news, she was home and slowly mending. Rita had been a friendly and attractive girl, who came into the shop a lot and any ulterior motives aside, I went to visit her, hoping to cheer her up. She had some bad physical scars, all over. Though she was in decent spirits when I visited, one of her friends told me, she was good day, bad day. Something about her made me think Steve Butler could help bring back a healthy spark to her wounded psyche. He had a way with chicks.
I promised Rita I’d come back and I did. This time I took Stevie, he was up for it too, and because I was interested in one of her friends, Jaye, it was only natural for Steve to hang with Rita. I just knew Steve & Rita would like each other. I was right. Somehow I lost track of Steve after he got involved with her—my attachments to girls sometimes as short as my jobs. Their relationship lasted awhile, and I know he helped her recovery.
Next thing I knew about him, he was traveling with another girl, his hair down to his waist, and according to Brian, they were in Los Angeles. Everybody got excited when word was out, Stevie was going to appear on a popular television game show To Tell the Truth. The hook—lame, but tailor made for that era— He and the girl were placed, standing with their backs to the audience, the panel had to guess who was the boy or the girl. Yikes! We laughed, we cried–my pals got high, I didn’t. I was envious of Stevie being on TV. I can’t recall, but I think he & his gf made it onto the original Price Is Right that same week. It might even be on YouTube now—I don’t know and I don’t want to either.
Steve lived in a cave for a phase, on one of the Hawaiian Islands. Mostly he traveled the world. I’d get picture postcards from all over the planet, many with the same message— ” have you left the house yet?” I resented it after a while. But he wasn’t wrong. Experience had made me even more solitary, writing songs & collaborating with several others. My body lived locally—my mind traveled globally. Then I’d write a song. One made a sentimental reference to a friend like Stevie and a guy like me & a girl. I was sure it would be a hit. Just like me, it didn’t go too far. But it did leave the house, winding up no doubt in circular files from NYC to L.A. with a stop in Nashville.
In 1986 I was doing a thankless gig at a street fair in Frenchtown N.J. I’d invited an old friend, but he had not shown up. Much to my happy amazement, another, very unexpected person, did— Stevie. He’d just come back from Tibet (!), spoken with our friend Dennis ( the no-show ) & decided he’d try to sell some of the items ( no! not drugs ) he’d brought back from Asia. Doing my usual, “ I’d like to buy something, man , but I’m doing this gig free ” act, I shook his hand. Being Stevie, he said—“…just pick out a few things, they’re yours. It’ll be your pay for playing.” Chambers of Commerce could learn from guys like him. Ex-cave dwellers being more giving than say, fat white blowhards. I chose a great cap & a scarf, which I subsequently employed as gifts for two women. I’d told him I might do just that & he smiled. But the third thing, a small wooden slide whistle, resides just a foot away from this keyboard.
That was the last time I saw Steve Butler. Two years later, he boarded a plane in London for NYC. It was Pan Am Flight 103 and it blew up over Lockerbie, Scotland. The story doesn’t end there. That’s why I’m stopping this one. And for the moment, I won’t be leaving the house.
Yeah I really can’t help myself. In that way I have total empathy with the individuals I’d like to excoriate. That would be whoever approved and subsequently permits major league baseball players to wear those lame, dumb ass hip hop style caps on the field. Absolutely zero excuse for players who adopt the style either. It’s officially the New Era 5950 cap, more like New Error. This is not the original model 5950, but a pandering perversion of it. Let me think why…oh, yeah M O N E Y!
Here’s a few reasons why they shouldn’t be allowed.
1. They make you look retarded
2. They come from a thug sub-culture, one that embraces violence toward women, police & lately—animals. . ..
3. Did I mention they look fucking retarded? ( so much for a pretense of civility )
Oh I wouldn’t want to dictate how anybody should dress themselves. That is, if they are in fact doing so. Much of this sub-culture gets off on sticking it to the man. The man, who is authority, doesn’t give a shit. The man is making money off you fools. The roots ( oops ) of this styling comes from poverty. Clothing is passed down from older brothers ( oops again ) and often larger than the recipient is. Though a few boys ( oh stop!) apparently got a sister’s, maybe aunt’s? clothes ( see Tyler Perry ). So, the hat resting on ears look is organic—still looks, you know what. The pants falling off thing from a decade ago? same deal. Very tasteful choice. Yet fitting ( ! ) if you extend the image, downward.
When I was a young teaching assistant, the trend among some kids was to wear their belts unbuckled & dangling. Now what does that most evoke? here’s a clue —it’s not the result of a big meal in the cafeteria. Some actors started using their mouth to emote non-verbally. If you aren’t sure what a lolling tongue suggests, go ask Mick Jagger. Michael Jordan was a flagrant tongue abuser on the court. Maybe I’m just envious. When I played in Little League, I was ridiculed for making faces while I pitched.* It’s all pretty puerile, if not febrile. Definitely infantile. Ile ( sic ), er um I’ll say. . ..
The worst part is the fat white dummies who have adopted this look too. What man are they sticking it to? oh yeah, me. Just like wearing gold chains, while playing baseball, you look stupid ( cough—gay ). Those grotesque chin beards are a whole other story. The cast of Moby Dick phoned, they want them back. Yes, stupid. But they are also repulsive. Again, it’s athletes aping ugly musicians. You kids need a designer. Hmmm hold on, most of them are… OK, just keep doing what you’re doing. You’re only young & dumb once. But don’t try to tell me it’s ironic. Unless the irony is, you think it’s attractive. Now pull up your pants.
* I had a .786 won-lost percentage. Of course in Little League that’s meh
AS predicted, jocksniffer radio hosts, listener calls, emails, texts, et al are myopically fixed on Michael Vick’s return to the NFL. The Philadelphia Eagles officially announced the signing of Vick, the man who served hard time for crossing state lines to engage in illegal dog fights. The animal abuse, cruelty, torture & execution, were just incidental to going from Virginia to Georgia to do it. Though a case could be made for just going back to Virginia once you made it to Georgia, which I’ve done myself.
At the Eagles press conference Vick, whose criminal acts fit the FBI profile for serial killer, apparently memorized a list of cliches. Learned behavior is something a sociopath is very good at doing. He is being mentored by Tony Dungy, a former NFL coach & born again Bible scholar, who has his own tragic history. The etymology of both their names aside, I have never enjoyed puppet shows after age 5. The debate over whether or not Vick deserves a return to the NFL took up 99% of ESPN program content today ( August 14 ), running the gamut from the inane to the insane. Best of British luck, ya’ll. . ..
AND 99% of those people discussing Vick are not only ill equipped to do so, they can barely articulate the real issue– has he rehabilitated himself ( ty Arlo )? So, as he goes over to sit on the Group W Eagles bench, I’d like to pose a question the great unwashed can all have an opinion on, and even more to the point, it’s at their level of intellect. Here goes—
Do you think the Eagles will cut Vick if he dogs it?
Update: August 13, 2009 Michael Vick has been signed by the Philadelphia Eagles. After complying with the conditions of an NFL imposed limbo status, he will have his second chance. That said: to repeat, any moron using the ” culture ” excuse for abusing animals— then your culture is criminally ill. AND as far as I know Vick’s culture is the United States of America. If you think that behavior is acceptable in the US, have someone read the penal code to you. Slowly.
The release of Michael Vick from Federal custody has provoked a fresh round of debate. Most of it concerns whether or not he should be allowed to resume his career in the National Football League. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has not yet announced a ruling on this matter, and when he does, the fire will really burn up sports talk radio lines.* Those freaks will trot out their legal experts & PETA deriding jokes. Topped off with the usual unhealthy dose of their Oprah informed grasp of psychology.
That’s not what’s burning me though. I just had to listen to a caller on WFAN claim it is ridiculous to not accept the practices of other cultures. This is a moronic argument for excusing dog fighting ( for which Vick was imprisoned, along with torturing & killing the animals ) & another favorite, cock fighting. For the uninitiated, which is to say, civilized humans, that would be roosters. UK actor Ricky Gervais was recently in the news for taking a stand against bull fighting. I am with him—I think Pamplona’s running of the bulls has also out run its course. Just ask the guy who got gored to death. My opinion is this kind of entertainment is not a part of a culture which gets grandfathered in & perpetuated, it is a clear lack of any semblance of culture.
The host of the program, suggested many of us don’t understand why these ” sports ” exist. Hey! listen genius I understand. It is born of desperate poverty, in which those with a pocket of power, prey on the weak minded & empathy bereft. It is based on betting & the need to feel a victory, employing animals as surrogates; animals who cannot give consent. It is deviant behavior on anyone’s dance card, and claiming your society has a right to do it, is frankly bull shit.
In segments of Africa the village male leaders remove the clitoris from their females. That’s their culture. Is that something we should all just accept? They have their reasons—and it’s their ballpark. And it is the product of the power mad and ignorance run rampant, kept in place by strong arm tactics & fear. Do I equate that with animal fighting? Yes. It is men, abusing their authority for the purpose of controlling another living things innate biological urge. I’ll pass on any twisted humor. It is simply the strong ( ? ) victimizing the weak.
I think Michael Vick can be given a second chance, for all the usual liberal reasons. He paid his debt blah blah blah. I also think if he steps in dog shit & even says one hard word, they should lock his ass up again. You know what I mean, so don’t get all jiggy. Play football, and stop getting off on animals. Vick was not a quality pro quarterback; he ran more than he passed ( he’s not very good at it ) & that led to injury. But he is a gifted athlete, so a change of position might work. When it comes to his recreational choices, he can slip into his Ron Mexico persona and have fun in Vegas, gambling with easily impressed dancers & hookers. They’ll be glad to do it doggy style.
AS for Vick’s apologists on both sides of the microphone. You can barely articulate a valid opinion on sports. Keep honing that meager skill and don’t start spouting off regarding culture. You probably wouldn’t know culture if somebody spilled yogurt on you. I’m pretty sure you’d sucker punch them, since it’s no doubt a proud part of your culture.
* Goodell has allowed Vick in the NFL pending a decision by game 6 of the 2009 season, reinstatement on hold based on the comissioner’s discretion. AND the talk is carpet bombing the airwaves now Vick has signed w/the Phila. Eagles.
I just realized the reason the Mayan Calendar ended at 2012. Those freaks ritually sacrificed all the guys who could do the math! which is apparently where the phrase ” do the math ” has its origins. They literally ripped the heart out of their civilization. The dumbasses killed the smart guys just to appease their gods. BTW Apocalypto was a really good flick. I do know two men who were disappointed by it though. I overheard them outside the theatre after the show. One of them thought it was Apocalypso. Well, there was dancing. The Mayans were nutjobs, but we can thank them for adding jai lai to world sports.
Speaking of ancient religions & suicidal tendencies, old Jehu Cristos must have had a major death wish. He not only took on the the entire Roman Empire with his big mouth, he confronted the alte cockers of Jeruselam. Not content to piss them off, he insulted and criticized the hierarchy of Judaism on a daily basis. Having been evicted from the Home Land by pharoahs, they were in no mood to take it on the chin from some snotty kid. Especially one who never got Bar Mitzvahed. Hey! no applause. This stuff just comes to me in between listening to sportstalk hosts refer to Shakespeare’s “novels” and the Egyptian pyramids where “the Mayans did their calendar.” Stick to Lou Piniella and Milton Bradley’s hissyfit & the scores Jason.
I know it’s way too much to hope that last night’s Baltimore Oriole comeback win—they were losing 10-1, over the Rat Sox will mean a deep downward spiral for those creeps. But Manny is due back in LA LA Land Friday. It will be fireworks somewhere this weekend. Good one huh.
Phillies should trade for Carl Pavano. He doesn’t beat his wife. But a move back to the National League and he just might beat enough teams to help the Phils. Unlike the rest of this blog, I’m virtually 100% serious.
I can’t help it—I love ENTOURAGE. But I’d shitcan Ari Gold in a NY minute, too counter-intuitive & petty for me. And who knew Adrian Grenier could sing—well, I have to wait for the DVD release. Thanks NetFlix—don’t fuck me up w/SMALLVILLE though. Please.
“Hey! thatsa pretty fonny. You canta fool me boss. Thosa Transformahs ainta racists, theyah battlebots they donta race!” Chico Marx
Let me get this straight. There are some people upset about racism in the new movie Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. The pervasive destructive disregard for life, property and national treasures, that’s okay? Not to mention the dogged possibility of damage to Megan Fox. And the veritable lake size puddles of oil they leave behind. I’d be an idiot of the same stripe as they are, to read as if I’d ever condone racism. But the superficial, knee jerk reactions of such people do nothing but actually pour some of that bot fluid on the flames.
They learned a big word once—stereotype. But they learned it in the context of an explanation with negative connotations. Am I even allowed to use negative? Stereotypes, as with the verbal equivalent, the cliché, exist for one reason—they are experiential human shorthand. If it waddles like a duck, we then see a duck, not some poor kid in a mascot suit. Unless of course, it is some kid in a mascot suit. Personally, I have seen just about every stereotype in real life, these jerkoffs complain about. It would be fine with them to have a white trash moron, an Italian mob goombah, a Jewish anything, but not a person of color who isn’t in Mensa? Could’ve been worse, they could’ve had Tyler Perry in drag Transformer. . ..
Bullshit. They are the people with the problem. It is so intense of a problem, they see racist in the use of the word people. In the Sixties, I was a second generation Italian, a teenager with long hair, a beard, wore sunglasses & drove a Corvette. If you knew anything about life before you were born or say, Heaven forfend, read a book, you’d know that was a set of characteristics sure to get you special notice by authorities. Luckily, I never did get any harassment. Because I was lucky and behaved myself, and never got caught the few times I power shifted, burnt rubber and wore a hundred miles off my tires. The only time was when a guy on my softball team, a police sergeant, advised me to be careful of the company I kept. He was right too. And I did. However, if you don’t think I got a taste of prejudice back then, you are culturally bereft. Sure, I had the ability and the option to “clean up my act,” a popular phrase of that era. Oddly, even when I did, I was still the same iconoclastic individual. My attitudes and foibles were internal. Have some groups had unfortunate extra attention? the sad answer is yes. As always, I ain’t here to do an exegesis of race relations. Just to point stuff out. Did I look like a small time drug dealer though? you betcha. Was I? Nope and that rhymes with—okay, but just that one time. And I was drunk. . ..
But including a dumbass black character in a movie is anathema? What! there no stupid blacks? how do you explain Martin Lawrence? You obviously don’t listen to WFAN. While possibly not the only choice for a movie character, if it’s an urban scene, what fits more for the point it makes? an African American with GQ cover looks and two doctorates? or some street thug. All y’all are just hater players. BTW why are you even at that movie? oh—Megan Fox! Sexist ahole huh. Or just hetero and enjoying yourself. I’d say lighten up, but I’m no racialist, you get the picture. Maybe. . ..
“Ha hah ha. Shoo, everybody knows they gotta lottsa juice in Florida. They come frommah Noo Yawk for the sunny shine!” Chico Marx
Manny Ramirez, eagerly ( LOL ) awaiting his return to Mannywood and the Dodger lineup, has caught some new attention himself. This because he is a stereotype—of a ballplayer caught using performance enhancing drugs. Apparently someone he’s been associated with has a father who is a doctor. A doctor can write prescriptions for said PED. Voila! This conduit from outside the US, up into Florida and servicing predominantly Latino jocks, is now under scrutiny. Again may I state: Boston, you are hypocrites & phonies. Have a nice day.
Wowie zowie! God didn’t waste anytime with the dead celebrity trifecta. Banging them out like ARod in batting practice. Only God can do it in the actual games too. Yeah sure Alex has had some good at bats the last few days—90 games to go hombre. Sorry, got off track there. So, Farrah Fawcett, Ed MacMahon, and Michael Jackson are at the Pearly Gates. Saint Peter sees Farrah, looks at his big book and says—-” Angel! go right in.” Ed steps up. Peter says-” Heyo!—you have all ready won. Go on in.” Then he looks at Michael Jackson, looks at the book. Looks at Michael again, then back at the book,* he asks — ” Moonwalk, eh! you were an astronaut?” Michael squeaks, ” Uh yes. Yes I was. An astronaut.” St. Peter smiles, ” Welcome to Heaven.” St. Paul throws Peter a look. Peter looks at paul and says – “Hey have you ever heard him sing She’s Out of My Life? The way his voice breaks at the end. That’s Heaven.”
*Take 2: St. Peter looks down at his book, looks at Michael Jackson. ” Oh dear, it’s Jackson. Whew–I thought they said Michael JORDAN. . ..”
Now if he can only keep his hands off the cherubs. Good night everybody! drive safely and don’t forget to tip your waitrons.