Abominable Apocryphal Deplorable Illustrious Wonder
This weekend provided some flat out taint tickling and nipple pulling excitement golf at the Masters. And…guess what….because…wait for it…. Tiger Damn Woods was in the middle of it. Shocker.
If Tiger isn’t playing, I’m not watching. If Tiger isn’t in the hunt, I’m usually running naked through the yard, among other Sunday things on my to-do list.
The thing with Tiger is it’s so rare to watch someone be the absolute best at something. Jazz-wise we have Coltrane, Armstrong, Miles, Ellington, Parker, Ornette. Once in a lifetimers. I’m not necessarily a golf fan, but I am Tiger fan. I want him to get back to just assassinating the field every weekend he plays. It brings me joy to see anyone he’s paired with pee his pants and lose his s***, or as Ralphy Wiggums would say, “I have two kinds of wet in my pants.”
It’s not about how nice he is or was to the fans, or exceptionally boring and emotionless to the media. I couldn’t care less. It’s not about his love of whooouures. And it’s not about me watching to see a devoted, faithful husband church goin family man.
I want the stone cold killa. I want him to murder people. The way he used to.
I had no problem when Michael Jordan would talk trash, or be a complete pr!ck to his teammates; because his play was legendary. His competitiveness was legendary boarding on hilariousness. “Dude, Jordan just knocked out Horace Grant in practice! He’s so competitive…” “Did you hear Michael put arsenic in Cartwright’s Cheerios to motivate him? SO COMPETITIVE…”
To me, Barry Bonds was different because he cheated the game. Big Mac (Mark McGwire) cheated the game. I loved Jose Canseco (mostly for trading card purposes) as a kid, but he cheated and ever since he retired he has been completely worthless, (other than exposing some other users).
I was a Bulls fan growing up, but I know non Bulls fans across the world that prayed that they could witness in person what M-Jeff could do on any given night. To be there transfixed on the master transforming the court, baseline to baseline, into a cathedral of windmilling-above-the-rim-artistry. Poetry in white-hot electric motion. Also, the only guy ever who could pull off a Hitler stache….
In baseball, (believe it or not), some of the worst people ever are LEGENDARY PLAYERS. Or….as I would like to dub, the Veda Pierce division, (fyi, watch the HBO miniseries Mildred Pierce. Amazing. The daughter Veda Pierce is the worst, most vile piece of filth I’ve ever encountered in a film character. Yeeshh…WOMEN are awful to each other. The things women say to their own friends is unbelievable. We’ll save this for another time.)
A short list in the V-Pierce division……..Ty Cobb, (beat up a man with no hands once), Mickey Mantle (showed up wasted to games and told young endearing fans to buzz off), Bonds (liar…liar…cheat), Jeff Kent (renowned male member), Roger Clemens (no explanation necessary), Ugueth Urbina, (not so legendary but assaulted servants unwarranted with a machete for swimming in his pool, now in jail for 20 years…) etc…..
Tiger doesn’t have a great rep with the fans, but how many times were Nicklaus and Palmer miked up and how many times did they yell at fans to shut up or trash talked or cussed up and down the course that we’ll never know about?
We don’t ask the legends to be humanitarians, nor wonderful people. We need them to be heroes of their game. Our heroes won’t always be nice. But they DO things no one else can or ever will do. Everything else is perception mixed with irrational desire for purity. The true pureness is the game played at the highest level.
That’s all I want.
And Latrell Sprewell choking P.J. Carlesimo, because don’t we all want to choke P.J. Carlesimo at some point?? I mean….he tried to play Kevin Durant at shooting guard???
A loaded topic like this can really only take us in one direction: The weirdness that is the World Baseball Classic. Pedroia and Jeter trotting off the field together after a put-out at second base? That just doesn’t look right. Wright and Rollins manning the left side of the infield? Did I miss something?
Now, I realize that this weirdness can also happen during the All-Star Game but that’s a once a year freak-fest where the players wear odd uniforms and the outcome has taken on a disproportionate level of importance.
This is the World Baseball Classic, the World Cup of Baseball. I want drama. I want to watch MLB teammates like Curtis Granderson and Magglio Ordonez whip themselves up into a nationalistic fervor so intense that they come to blows and then both demand trades. I want Jeter to talk about the toxic environment created by the presence of Red Sox players and former Yankees. I want David Wright and Jimmy Rollins to use this forum as an excuse to decide the NL East crown in the most logical fashion possible, pistols at dawn on the pitcher’s mound.
But no. Instead we get stories like this, where injured players are sticking around and other players are happy to sit the bench or take limited playing time just for the honor of being part of this team. Where’s a T.O. or a Latrell Sprewell when you really need them? Can we really allow this love fest to continue unabated?
However, there is still hope for the Scrooges among us. So far the US team has made congeniality easy by eking out a win over Canada and then pounding Venezeula. But what happens when they are faced with real challenges by way of Puerto Rico or Japan? Only then will we see what these players are really made of and what happens when vexing developments explode inside cramped locker-room havens.
But until that time I’m going to swallow my bile and cheer like a pre-pubescent girl at an early 90’s New Kids on the Block concert as the announcers rattle off the Pedroia to Jeter to Youkilis inning ending double-play. USA! USA! USA!
As is true of any East-Coast liberal elite (born, transplanted or otherwise), I love the finer things in life. Wine tasting, Sunday brunch and, of course, Jon Stewart. Despite the fact that he is an unabashed Mets fan and supporter of all things New Jersey, I still believe there is no finer news source on American television. That’s why I watched with interest as he touched on a topic that my friend, Mr. Lung, recently brought up.
Watching this kind of reminded me of RSBS‘s good friend, Manny Ramirez, and the events that led up to his “transfer” to the Los Angeles Dodgers of Los Angeles. I mean, you want to talk about someone taking a crap on the people paying his bills, Manny would have to be right up there. He’s far from the worst and at least with Manny we kind of expect it. After all, there is a reason that the phrase “Manny being Manny” has become accepted in the baseball lexicon.
However, although other players may not have the chutzpah to come right out and say the same things as him, they usually find a way to show their true feelings (right along with their true colors).
For instance, when Kyle Farnsworth found out last week he was being traded from the Yankees to the Tigers, he cried. Yes, a grown man making millions of dollars a year cried like a little baby because he had to move from the Big Apple to the post-apocalyptic wasteland that is Detroit. I can understand being upset but crying? C’mon man. Have a little pride. I’ve been pretty up front about my distaste for Mr. Farnsworth but even I expected better than that.
Anyway, I’m sure there are even better examples out there (aside from the obvious Latrell Sprewell and Shawn Chacon) but I’ll leave them for our intrepid readers and the always watchful Mr. Lung.