Still reeling from Hillary’s comeback in New Hampshire as a huge underdog Tuesday night. Amazing. I’m leaning toward voting for the Clintons (and really, they’re a package deal) for three reasons:
1. They’ve been in the office before and made all their mistakes the first time around. Shades of Belichick learning from his Cleveland days. This time around, at least we know they’ll take over the office with a game plan instead of limping through that first “What the hell am I doing?” year that seems to happen to every new president.
2. I miss Bill Clinton and want him back in my life on a regular basis for comedy and entertainment purposes. The thought of him closing down some hotel bar at 2 in the morning by telling two floozies, “How’d you ladies like to come back to the First Man’s suite for a nightcap?” is just too good to pass up.
3. Obama smokes cigarettes. I can’t get past this. Should the president be one of those guys who tells his staff, “Hold on, before we discuss this terrorist attack, lemme sneak outside for a butt”? Also, smokers are predisposed to telling white lies because everyone’s always trying to get them to quit, so they’re always saying stuff like, “Come on, I only have one or two a day,” when they’re really sneaking off behind garages and getting up at 2 a.m. pretending to get a glass of water and then plowing through a butt in 30 seconds. That makes me nervous. I don’t want my president to have a life built around white lies. Unless he’s totally open about the smoking … then it’s OK.
With that said, Obama might win me over if he keeps ripping off Cyrus’ act from “The Warriors.” Check out this YouTube clip of Cyrus’ speech, as well as Obama’s speech in Iowa, and tell me Obama isn’t about six months away from ending every speech with “Cannnnnnn youuuuuuuu diggggggggg ittttttttttttttttttttt???” What an electric speaker. You have to hand it to him.
Speaking of YouTube, please make sure to check out the Sports Guy Collection of playlists, which has swelled to a whopping 175 clips. There are so many good things in there, I can’t even pick out three or four to plug. Just head over there and zoom through it when you have 10 minutes to kill. You won’t be disappointed.
While you’re killing time, we just updated the Sports Guy Subject Archive to include every relevant column I wrote from 2001 through the end of 2007. If you’re ever in the mood to read old columns, always use this page instead of the less reliable archive page — these are all direct links that work, and everything is separated by subject (Boston, NBA, running diaries, etc.).
Some of my old Baseball Hall of Fame columns to check out in honor of Goose Gossage making it Tuesday: Why the HOF should adopt a pyramid scheme (2002). … My complete ballot in 2005, updated in 2007 with some additional names (scroll down to the middle of the column). … And why Mark McGwire should make the HOF (2007).
One more thing: I’m saving my thoughts on Clemens for a column. You’re not gonna believe this, but I have some thoughts. In the meantime, let’s bang out some quick links:
• Multiple readers sent along Nick Hornby’s interview of “The Wire” creator David Simon, as well as one of the “Freakonomics” authors watching the show with real-life thugs and getting their take on the show. I’m holding my thoughts on Season 5 for a later column, but let’s just say that the first two episodes didn’t disappoint. Don’t forget, if you have HBO On-Demand, you can always watch the upcoming week’s episode starting Monday.
• Speaking of quality TV shows, AMC is rerunning “Mad Men” starting Jan. 20 (Sunday nights at midnight ET). Get your TiVo’s ready. I haven’t seen one minute of that show, but as I’ve mentioned in the past, I have a few friends in L.A. who swear it’s fantastic. Definitely worth a look. Thanks to AMC for making the difficult decision to pre-empt daily showings of “The Godfather” and “Bull Durham” to rerun an apparently great show that nobody knew about until it was too late. I know it must have been agonizing to figure out what to do there.
• This Horatio Sanz interview in the AV Club was surprisingly entertaining.
• Tim Goodman weighs in on the writers’ strike, which is starting to resemble this scene from a famous Harrison Ford movie. While we’re here, check out a WGA member’s reasons for opposing the strike and going Fi-Core.
• The good people at Pro Football Talk continue to question the merits of the Week 17 game between the Titans and Colts. Couldn’t agree more. Imagine if the Giants or the Cowboys were screwed over there instead of a small market team like the Browns?
• Just in case you missed it, the story of the New York window washer who fell 47 stories and lived is absolutely amazing.
• From Nick in Bakersfield, Calif.: “Here’s a clip of Norm MacDonald on ‘Late Night with Conan O’Brien’ from about 10 years ago. Norm totally takes over the interview with Courtney Thorne-Smith during the latter part of the segment (fast-forward to the four-minute mark), and delivers a few lines that not only send Conan into hysterical laughter, but probably ultimately killed Courtney Thorne-Smith’s career.”
• From Sara in Tempe, Ariz.: “Your disdain for women’s basketball is well documented (though unfounded), but I thought even you would get a kick out of this story. For some reason, it has gone under the radar. Can you recall a university finishing a basketball game with only two players? And Arizona is a land-grant university for crying out loud.”
• Do you want to see Baron Davis’ list of the best and worst movies in 2007? I bet you do. Let’s give Baron and Stephen Jackson a “Siskel and Roeper” type show in which they review movies each week. Done and done.
• I couldn’t have been more disappointed that Holy Cross didn’t ask me to participate in this roundtable discussion about our sports teams. As disappointed reader Ryan in St. Louis writes: “I graduated in ’03 and now live in Illinois. All I ask is that HC is good enough at sports so anyone outside of New England won’t think I went to an all-girls school. Also, I don’t understand how administrators can ignore that applications and selectivity rise exponentially when a school that is academically inclined becomes athletically able (look at Duke, Stanford, et al).” Couldn’t agree more. I didn’t give money last year, and I will continue not to give money until they come up with a game plan on the sports front. Even if we move into the NESCAC, I’d be fine with that. Just do something.
• Not only does our friend Dave Dameshek have his own podcast page on ESPN.com now, but I co-hosted his L.A. show with him Tuesday. Here’s a snippet in which Dave does his “jerk list” and has the gall to put the Sports Gal on it. For the complete three-hour show (and some hearty ’70s sitcom talk), click here.
• This Ross Tucker piece was interesting for the Tom Brady parts.
• You’re not going to believe this, but the Phoenix Suns are battling some chemistry problems. Come on, they seem so happy!
• Thought this USA Today article about slipping DVD sales was intriguing, although it failed to mention the three most likely reasons: First, Hollywood screwed up the DVD market by loading every movie with “EXTRA STUFF!” when, invariably, the extra stuff always sucks. For every “Boogie Nights,” where it’s actually worth it to own the DVD, there are 50 terrible ones that waste your time and money. Second, people are tired of buying a DVD for a movie, only to see that same movie be re-released a year later with more extras. It’s practically consumer fraud. You should be able to return the old DVD and put the money toward the new one. And, third, since every single movie is constantly on TV now, and since you can rent anything, there’s not the same urgency to buy DVDs that there was 10 years ago (or even five years ago). Why do I need to own “Shawshank” when it’s on every night on one of the 475 movie channels we’re getting?
(My buddy Ace has a fourth theory that I don’t necessarily agree with, but it’s interesting: He has reached the point that he’s too lazy to even stand up, find a DVD and put it in the DVD player, fast-forward through all the ads to get to the main menu, then press “Play.” He’d rather just plant himself on the sofa, flip channels and find something without moving. Now, I’m the same way … but is everyone else in the country equally lazy? Probably not.)
• Check out this USA Today feature comparing the ’07 Pats to the ’77 Habs, who won an astonishing 60 games and every conceivable award. For whatever reason, we always hear the same teams mentioned in the “Greatest Teams Ever” discussion (’98 Yanks, ’96 Bulls, ’85 Bears, ’72 Dolphins, ’86 Celtics, ’76 Reds, etc.) and the Habs get the shaft. I loved hockey back then and nobody was more unbeatable than the Habs during Guy LaFleur’s peak. Especially at home. You went into those games thinking you had a zero percent chance of winning.
• I liked John Canzano’s story about Blazers fans for the tidbit at the end about the 2002 Blazers and the kid in the wheelchair. How can Rasheed Wallace, by all accounts, be considered the greatest teammate ever and such a likable guy and, then, we see a story like that? Am I supposed to like Rasheed or not like him? Somebody needs to investigate this.
• James D. in Fort Worth, Texas: “Was shopping for T-shirts the other day and stumbled across a Cobra Kai 1984 Karate Champ shirt. It immediately made me think of your column from a few years back. This is an absolute must-have. With this T-shirt, there is no end to your reign! Just watch out for any dorky loners who spend their afternoons washing cars and painting fences. While you might be tempted, just walk away. TRUST ME.”
• According to Variety, the writers’ strike has given an improbable boost to “Friday Night Lights,” which now looks like it’s coming back for a third season. I thought last Friday’s episode was the best one of Season 2 for two reasons — they geared it around Tim Riggins (who definitely made The Leap in Season 2, much like Clooney in the second season of “ER”) and the coach’s family, and they cut out two characters whose stories pretty much ran their course (Street and Lila). Riggins is threatening to break into the Pantheon of All-Time Great TV Characters. He really is. They could spin him off next season and he could carry his own show. I’m convinced.
• From Pete in Glendale, Ariz.: Who doesn’t love a good jump off a steel cage? Check out Jeff Hardy! We’ve come a long way since Superfly Snuka.
• Finally, the Jaguars made an enormous mistake by allowing this to happen on their Web site. Haven’t teams learned by now not to rile up the 2007 Pats? Lay the points and thank me later.