I’m tall, but I’m not incredibly tall. I’m just about 6 foot, give or take an inch because of posture, mood or shoes.
6 foot is just tall enough to lose some shorter people in your immediate peripheral vision. That’s what happened last week. I was walking home in the middle of the afternoon, listening to a podcast (Chris Hardwick and the Nerdist crew interviewing Ike Barinholz.) I was engrossed in the conversation enough that I wasn’t fully aware of my surroundings. At one point, though, I saw something out of the very corner of my eye. I turned my head and noticed a short hispanic man walking, step for step, right next to me.
At this point, I pulled out one of my earphones to see what the hell this guy was up to:
1. It seemed like he was already midway through a conversation with me by the time I started listening
2. It was in Spanish, a language that I don’t currently communicate in.
Using context clues and my keen eye for interpreting body language, I tried to figure out if he had intended to get my attention or was just reacting once I turned an acknowledged his presence. Sadly, I was unable to ascertain an answer to this conundrum. Instead, he started laughing and seemed to use hand signals to insinuate that I am, indeed, taller than him.
Then, all of a sudden, for just a split second, I thought, “Fuck, is this guy going to rob me?” And then I got really mad at him. Not because he might rob me, but because there was nothing about him that gave off an “I’m going to rob you “vibe.
So, fuck you, small Hispanic man, for forcing me to confront the latent, but apparently deep-seated, racism that exists in my subconscious.
I just wanted to walk home with my headphones on.
Michael Bamberger’s Scorecard column is about Tiger Woods, who essentially had a golf channel fired for pointing out that Tiger showed bad sportsmanship when he got caught in a recent rules infraction. Bamberger insinuates that part of the issue is that the Golf Channel is owned by NBC, which is broadcasting the Olympics. And there is a fear that skier Lindsay Vonn, who is dating Tiger, may decide not to grant NBC interviews during the Olympics out of solidarity to her boyfriend. To this I say, “Go ahead, Lindsay Vonn.” Does Lindsay Vonn think she’ll still be famous without talking to Bob Costas in primetime? NBC is the biggest star at the Olympics and its the network who decides which athletes will be the breakout personalities. It doesn’t go the other way.
Boston Strongman by Tom Verducci
I’m going to put aside a lot of my personal feelings when discussing this article about David Ortiz, his play in the World Series and his role as a citizen of Boston. I’m not going to discuss whether or not I think a sports event can heal a city (I don’t.) I’m not going to discuss whether or not Boston is still reeling from the Marathon bombing (I’m not there, so I can’t say for sure, but I doubt that the bombing is still at the fore of everyone’s mind when they wake up in the morning.) And I’m not going to discuss my opinion of this current Red Sox roster (A DISGUSTING GROUP OF SCUMBAGS AND NE’ER DO WELLS.)
Instead, I will just say this. David Ortiz is the perfect athlete and perfect personality for a city like Boston at a time like this.
Friday Night Lights Out by Andy Staples
This story, about Baylor Coach Art Briles, takes place in Texas and mentions high school football. So, obviously, some Friday Nights Lights references had to be shoehorned in. But, what I really liked about it, and about Briles specifically, is something he says towards the end of the profile. Briles rejects the “coach as bad ass drill sergeant” model. Instead, he insists on positivity. He tells his players they’re the best until they believe it. I like that. To a degree.
Hail To The… Really? by Peter King
King writes about the 9-0 Chiefs and their new head coach Andy Reid. Reid seems somewhat similar to Briles, in that he doesn’t care too much about posturing. If someone has an idea that will help win a game, then that person is free to share that idea. I was surprised by that. Andy Reid looks like an old school angry football lifer. I was pleasantly surprised to find out he isn’t.
Into The Belly of Beast Mode by Chris Ballard
An investigation into what makes Seattle Seahawks fans the loudest crowd in the NFL. I’ve said it numerous times in the past. Chris Ballard is a GREAT writer. If you see his byline, you know you’re going to really enjoy the piece that follows.
Point After by Richard Sherman
The Seahawks Corner writes an, “If I was commissioner,” column. It couldn’t have been dumb. It is not. Sherman actually has a lot of very good ideas. I was most impressed with his idea to donate all helmet on helmet fines to fund treatment for players dealing with concussion issues. That’s a Great proposal. Sherman writes like someone who went to Stanford. Because he did.