Showing posts with label NFL. Show all posts
Showing posts with label NFL. Show all posts

Monday, February 08, 2016

Satan overplays his hand

Yes, the National Abortion Rights Action League would like you to believe that fetuses actually are toasters, not humans.

The insanity of these people is self-evident, as is their humorlessness and rigid ideology. The devil may have all the good tunes, but he has to own the angry, death-loving harpies as well.

OH . . . Angry Scolds for Death hated this Hyundai ad, too. Perhaps Kevin Hart was messin' with their business model; I dunno.

At any rate, I stand with Jim Minardi. Even the devil drunk tweets from time to time, ending up overplaying his hand and giving us all a glimpse behind the unholy veil.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

What if. . . ?

What if a local TV station locked out its real meteorologist and brought in a "replacement weatherguy" to tell us what it's going to be like out there?

And what if the word out there is that the weatherscab producing your "Pinpoint VIPIR AccuNow forecast" was let go by the Lingerie Weather Channel because he, well, sucked?

 As NBC26 in heartsick Green Bay, Wis., showed us Tuesday, it'd go something like this:
The Green Bay Packers became the latest NFL team to lose on a highly questionable call by the league’s replacement referees last night. WGBA, Green Bay’s NBC affiliate, poked fun at the situation this morning, bringing in a “replacement weather guy” to handle the forecast.
“It’s pretty bad out there people,” the replacement weather guy said (video above). “200 degrees below we’re looking at, and it’s really going to heat up. It’s going to be like 346 degrees by noon.”
WOW! If it's going to get up to 346, the station probably ought to let all the female anchors and reporters go on the air in just their lingerie. It would be just too darn hot to wear anything else.

Yeah, that's the (replacement) ticket!

And it would make the adjustment from the replacement weatherguy's previous gig a bit less daunting.

Monday, April 23, 2012

They shoot franchises, don't they?

If any shred of the latest Saints scandal talk is true, given the trouble the team already is in, the NFL may need to exercise the nuclear option.

No, the real nuclear option. Not the kinda nuclear option it unleashed against New Orleans over Bountygate.

Is what I'm saying. Because if you're Commissioner Roger Goodell, you only need to take so much of this s*** -- if you know what's good for your league.

That's right,
ladies and germs, ESPN has broken yet another sordid story involving the National Football League's rags-to-riches-to-cautionary-tale poster children:
The U.S. Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of Louisiana was told Friday that New Orleans Saints general manager Mickey Loomis had an electronic device in his Superdome suite that had been secretly re-wired to enable him to eavesdrop on visiting coaching staffs for nearly three NFL seasons, "Outside the Lines" has learned.

Sources familiar with Saints game-day operations told "Outside the Lines" that Loomis, who faces an eight-game suspension from the NFL for his role in the recent bounty scandal, had the ability to secretly listen for most of the 2002 season, his first as general manager of the Saints, and all of the 2003 and 2004 seasons. The sources spoke with "Outside the Lines" under the condition of anonymity because of fear of reprisals from members of the Saints organization.

Jim Letten, the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Louisiana, acknowledged being told of the allegations Friday. Sources said he has briefed the FBI in New Orleans about Loomis' alleged activity. If proved, the allegations could be both a violation of NFL rules and potentially a federal crime, according to legal sources. The federal Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) of 1986 prohibits any person from intercepting communications from another person using an electronic or mechanical device.

"I can say that we were just made aware of that on Friday, at least of these allegations," Letten said. "Anything beyond that I'm afraid I'm not at liberty to comment."

Greg Bensel, Saints vice president of communications, said Monday afternoon on behalf of the Saints and Loomis: "This is 1,000 percent false. This is 1,000 percent inaccurate."

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said the league was unaware of the allegations.

Sources told "Outside the Lines" the listening device was first installed in the general manager's suite in 2000, when Loomis' predecessor, Randy Mueller, served as Saints GM. At that time, according to sources, Mueller had the ability to use the device to monitor only the game-day communications of the Saints' coaching staff, not the opposing coaches. Mueller, now a senior executive with the San Diego Chargers (he also was an NFL analyst from 2002 to '05), declined to comment when contacted by "Outside the Lines."

After the transition from Mueller to Loomis, the electronic device was re-wired to listen only to opposing coaches and could no longer be used to listen to any game-day communications between members of the Saints' coaching staff, one source said.

"There was a switch, and the switch accessed offense and defense," said the source. "When Randy was there, it was the Saints offense or defense, and when Mickey was there it changed over so it was the visiting offense or defense," the source said.
NEW ORLEANS should be so proud. Then again, knowing the Crescent City, it probably is.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Calling Oliver Stone. . . .

Bobby Hebert is a paillasse.

"Spud" McConnell, too. And when you're un paillasse -- a clown en français -- you say crazy s***. Like this March 6 conspiracy theory from the WWL radio hosts about how the NFL is out to get the Saints because everybody's jealous of the team -- and New Orleans.

Cher, ça c'est fou! That's just nuts.

I am from Louisiana. I am -- was? -- a Saints fan from the beginning in 1967. And I have lived away from there for a long time now.

I ASSURE everyone in the Crescent City that no one is jealous of Louisiana. No one.

No one is jealous of the Saints now. No one.

I said in January, in relation to another of the former New Orleans quarterback's antics, that sometimes it takes a couyon, which is a lot like a paillasse. This is not one of those times.

Now is time for a team, and a city and a state, to acknowledge that bad actions have bad consequences, not make crazy-ass excuses and spin stupid-ass conspiracy theories in a sad effort to evade what's plainly evident to everybody else -- the Saints were a dirty, crooked outfit.

I realize, of course, that for Louisianians like Hebert, a 300-year habit can be difficult to break. But now is as good a time as any to give it a try.

SEE, that wasn't so hard, was it, Bobby? From March 6 to Wednesday, almost a 55-percent reduction in crazy and nobody spontaneously combusted or anything. Good job. Keep it up.

Now, I'm not gonna be holding my breath, now. . . .

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Law of the jungle . . . and Saints fans

The NFL commish hammered the New Orleans Saints today for general crookedness and lying through their teeth.

Saints fans are shocked, shocked that Roger Goodell would suspend Coach Sean Payton for a year, among other stiff penalties levied against the team, after the league uncovered a ongoing "bounty" for taking out targeted opposing players. This is because Louisiana's famously formerly incarcerated former governor, Edwin Edwards, didn't just happen and wasn't some sort of isolated historical freak of nature.

Culture matters. Sometimes, it has a funny way of manifesting itself. Like now.

Former pro defensive lineman Warren Sapp, now an analyst on the NFL Network, today "reported" that former Saint receiver Jeremy Shockey was the "snitch" who blew the whistle on the team's scheme. That was all outraged New Orleans fans -- in website comboxes and all over Facebook -- needed for them to go all ghetto on Shockey for "snitching," no matter the veracity of Sapp's "sources":
* Shame Shame Shame....I had heard it was Fujuta, which really upset me...Shockey sounds about right.... :( Glad he's gone

* Somehow, if it is him, I am sadly not surprised. We all saw the way he acted towards our players when the saints played the panthers. Such a poor sport. [No, "sportsmanship" is Jonathan Vilma offering $10,000 to anyone knocking the Vikings' Brett Favre out of the 2010 NFC Championship Game. Yeah, that's the ticket.-- R21]

* People knew it was Shockey from day 1. & no one's career was ended. It's football not freaking line dancing. They were not out to kill players perhaps reaggravate injuries already bothering players.

* Inspiration for a new t-shirt! No one likes a snitchy Shockey!! His face on a neutra rat's body.

* I KNEW IT. As soon as the story broke I said he was the snitch. Bottom line, it happens all over the NFL - it is not right - we got caught and are being made an example of.

* Its wide open, its reported and its been verified by vets. So if you think the Saints should be the personal Jesus for every team that did this and played like its not real then I cant understand your opinion. There was only two illegal hits in that nfc championship and one was the vikings hitting Brees late.
Even with the bounty the players kept the hits clean. I can think of a lot more dirty hits that were bounties. How bout Montana, 91 Championship, Gannon in the Playoff game where Saragusa surfed him like a west coast wave.....Rodney Harrisons entire dirty career... lol. If you are going to judge then judge em all, dont cherry pick the Saints.
The penalty is too much. Fines and draft picks maybe but suspension for years is ridiculous. The league has officially went wuss trying to duck these ex-players lawsuits. The nfl is a crap company. If they are going to penalize the Saints then they need to start paying those old guys who cant talk.... Plain and simple. Lets go ahead and get all the dirty laundry out.
This hole thing is about lawsuits, lameness, and political correctness. Don't buy into it and throw rocks at the Saints by themselves. The nfl has a lot of nerve to duck out on this and point the finger at the Saints. Its a scapegoat, plain and simple.

Hey Warran, Thanks for telling us who the snitch was We pulled his butt out of NY and gave him a chance to become something .. this is the thanks you get

* C I L L Jeremy Shockey.
I THOUGHT I had said my piece March 7 after Sports Illustrated came out with a damning article about the Saints' bounty scheme. After wasting too much time and too many brain cells being reminded today about why I'm damn well rid of the Gret Stet, I think I have one last thing to say to my fellow Saints fans.

Make that
former fellow Saints fans.

Anyway, here it is:
Dear Outraged Saints Fans:

Wow, it seems you folks like your football exactly the way you like your politics -- crooked. I look forward to y'all praising those who refuse to tell the cops a damned thing about New Orleans' 199 murders last year . . .
because nobody likes a "snitch," right?

The Saints broke a major rule of the league -- intentionally trying to injure targeted opposing players for cash rewards -- and they did it flagrantly, brazenly and repeatedly. Then the players and coaches covered it up. And all you outraged moral cyphers think the National Football League, Commissioner Roger Goodell and the "snitch" are the problem here.

Come to think of it, that explains a hell of a lot about Louisiana and its place on the bottom of all the good lists and the top of all the bad ones.

If you ask me, the Saints got off easy. I would have given Sean Payton what Gregg Williams got. I would have banned Williams for life, and I would have given General Manager Mickey Loomis what Payton got. I would have fined the team $1 million, and I would have thought hard about banning the franchise from competition for a year.

That would be a message no franchise could ignore.

And I don't want to hear another word about "everybody else was doing it, too." That bulls*** didn't fly with your mama, and it sure as hell won't fly anywhere else, either.

Ultimately, that's not what really gives me the reds. What gives me the reds is that -- just like Louisiana voters -- Saints fans like those on display here today are too damned stupid -- too damned lacking in self-respect -- to realize that, ultimately, it is themselves who have been conned, toyed with and dishonored.

You stuck with a crappy-ass team for four and a half decades, put your faith in it as a symbol of renewal after Katrina and, finally, cried tears of joy when the Saints won the Super Bowl . . .
and it was all a sham. As it turns out, there was a good reason that 2009 defense was so salty, a good reason the Saints won it all -- several coaches and many players were dirty. They cheated like hell.

They gave the NFL rule book
(not to mention gullible ol' you) the finger. The bird. The middle-digit salute.


And for what it's worth, I include myself among the Saints' suckers . . . ever since 1967. Fool me once. . . .
HERE IS the short version: Stop your sobbing, because America isn't listening. You get no sympathy for your NFL team being as crooked as your politicians.

And, apparently, you.

Good night, and good luck. You'll need it.

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Ain'ts that a shame

I have been a New Orleans Saints fan since the Saints came to be in 1967.

Throughout most of the NFL franchise's history, wins were few, far between and usually gotten by hook or by crook.
Well, what you gonna do, Cap? Dem's the Ain'ts for you.

Then came Katrina. We weren't sure we'd have New Orleans to kick around anymore, much less the Ain'ts. And after a disastrous 2005 season played entirely on the road, after all the rumors that owner Tom Benson was going to take the franchise to San Antonio, after the dicey proposition that was the Crescent City itself, we weren't sure we gave a damn.

Then something happened.

The Saints stayed . . . got a new coach and a new quarterback. The newly repaired and renovated Superdome reopened.

The reopening of the dome became a metaphor for the rebuilding of a city. And when the Saints won that 2006 home opener against the archrival Atlanta Falcons, it was pure catharsis for anyone who ever called south Louisiana home.

And when "Dem Boys" kept winning, well. . . .

And during that magical season three years later --
that championship 2009 season -- we thought it was some kind of miracle of God. Some kind of salve for the years of suffering by a city defined as much by its agonies as its ecstasies.

Long-suffering fans shed tears of joy when the Saints beat the Vikings and pigs flew. When hell froze over. When "Saints" and "Super Bowl" could coexist in a sentence devoid of both irony and the word "never."

And on a February day in 2010, many of us wept for joy as time expired on four-plus decades of futility. New Orleans 31, Indianapolis 17. Saints . . .
Super Bowl champs.

But I'm from Louisiana. I should have known better, formed as I was by a land where "crook" was far more common than "hook."

THESE DAYS, redemption songs and impossible dreams are as likely as anything else to be nothing more than just another g**damned lie.

Peter King, in the latest issue of
Sports Illustrated, disavows us of our illusions:
On Saturday nights during the 2009 NFL season, Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, the lightning-rod leader of a feisty unit, would stand in front of his men holding white envelopes filled with cash—bonuses for their performances the previous week. As Williams called up player after player, handing them envelopes with amounts ranging from $100 for a special teams tackle inside the opponents' 20-yard line to $1,500 for knocking a foe out of the game, a chant would rise up from the fired-up defenders: "Give it back! Give it back! Give it back!"

Many players would do just that, to beef up the pot and make the stakes bigger as the season went on. The NFL alleges that by the time New Orleans reached the NFC Championship Game against the Vikings on Jan. 24, 2010, the stakes had risen to the point that middle linebacker and defensive captain Jonathan Vilma personally offered a $10,000 bounty to any player who knocked Minnesota quarterback Brett Favre out of the game. (SI's attempts to reach Vilma were unsuccessful.)

Over four quarters that Sunday at the Superdome, Favre was hit repeatedly and hard. The league later fined Saints defensive linemen Bobby McCray and Anthony Hargrove a total of $25,000 for three separate improper hits, and NFL vice president of officiating Mike Pereira said the Saints should have been flagged for a brutal high-low mashing by McCray and defensive lineman Remi Ayodele in the third quarter. Favre suffered a badly sprained left ankle on that play and had to be helped off the field. On the New Orleans sideline, Hargrove excitedly slapped hands with teammates, saying, "Favre is out of the game! Favre is done! Favre is done!"

An on-field microphone directed toward the sideline caught an unidentified defender saying, "Pay me my money!"

Favre returned to the game but was hobbled. The Saints won 31–28 in overtime, and two weeks later they defeated the Colts 31–17 in Super Bowl XLIV, a victory for an embattled city that was one of the most uplifting moments in recent NFL history. But the excessive hits on Favre in the title game, and on Cardinals quarterback Kurt Warner a week earlier in New Orleans's 45–14 divisional playoff victory, prompted an off-and-on two-year league investigation that culminated last Friday in a caustic and blistering report implicating Williams and Saints players in a pay-for-performance program that operated far outside the bounds of league rules. The report also said that general manager Mickey Loomis was made aware of the allegations about the program in early 2010, denied knowledge of it and said he would ensure that no such program was in place, and that coach Sean Payton was also aware of the allegations but failed to look into them. (Loomis and Payton did not respond to repeated requests for comment over the weekend.)

The discipline handed down to Williams, Payton, Loomis and several players will likely dwarf the Patriots' punishment in the infamous Spygate scandal in 2007. In that case the league fined the Patriots and coach Bill Belichick $750,000 and docked New England a first-round pick for illegally videotaping opposing sidelines. Judging by the outrage emanating from the NFL's New York City offices over the weekend, the Saints' sanctions could be closer to the yearlong suspensions given to stars Alex Karras and Paul Hornung in 1963 for gambling. Discipline is expected to be announced within the month.

For commissioner Roger Goodell, player safety has become a top priority, and nothing could undermine that more than cash incentives for players to injure their opponents. One source close to Goodell said the commissioner's reaction to the initial reports of the bounties in the 2009 playoffs was, "God forbid this is true. This will be earth-shattering."

In football circles, it is. The NFL charges that over the past three seasons, between 22 and 27 Saints participated in a bounty program administered by Williams and by leading players that paid defenders for specific achievements on the field, including injuring opponents. The program reportedly paid $1,500 for knocking a player out of a game and $1,000 for a "cart-off"—forcing a player to be helped off the field—as well as lesser rewards for individual plays. During the playoffs, the league said, the sums increased. Such bounties not only circumvent the NFL's salary cap, as extra off-the-books compensation, but also violate the NFL's constitution and by-laws and the collective bargaining agreement, all of which state, "No bonuses or awards may be offered or paid for on-field misconduct (for example, personal fouls to, or injuries inflicted on, opposing players)."

In a statement on Friday, Goodell said, "It is our responsibility to protect player safety and the integrity of our game, and this type of conduct will not be tolerated. We have made significant progress in changing the culture with respect to player safety, and we are not going to relent."

YOU KNOW, it wasn't just fair play, player safety and the National Football League that the Saints betrayed here. They betrayed a city, too.

But wait! There's more!

Not only that, the likes of Williams, Payton, Loomis, Vilma and the rest betrayed generations of fans who had suffered with decades of their lovable-loser forebears. They betrayed our dreams and our loyalty.

They, for good measure, betrayed the power of metaphor. And finally, they betrayed the virtue of hope.

Why am I not surprised that the "home team" bears a striking resemblance to generations of crooked Louisiana pols who have taken a state with enormous natural riches and left it the poor man of America? Time after time -- generation after generation -- it has been the fate of Louisiana's sons and daughters to bear yet another betrayal and vow yet again that we won't be fooled again.

Just another brick in a wall of g**damned lies, alas.

I GUESS we could hope that Goodell might mete out penalties worthy of the crime -- of the betrayal -- but, after all, we are from Louisiana, and justice would be too much to hope for.

If coaches were banned for life and the Saints front office got what it truly deserved, too many people would lose too much money. And if growing up in the Gret Stet has taught us anything. . . .

Man up, Drew. Something tells me you're gonna get Favred this season -- for free.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Coach of the year

When you have a football coach capable of shocking NFL players, the cynics of sports-talk radio and the sports bloggers of the Internet, too, it might be the start of something big.

Or maybe it's just another football coach in it for himself and no one else -- the perfect hard-ass coach for hard-ass times in a country all about getting the hardware and not about the humans who get it for you.

Of course we're talking about Nick Saban.

The scene of our story: the 2005 Miami Dolphins training camp. The guy who was there: ex-Dolphin Heath Evans. Where we get to hear it: an interview with Jorge Sedano on Miami sports-talk station
The Ticket, as related on Sports by Brooks.
During the interview, Evans was asked by Sedano to describe Nick Saban at Dolphins training camp in 2005 when Saban was in his first year as Miami’s head coach and Evans was a player on the squad.

SEDANO: Give me an example of something he did to someone while you were there that made you shake your head, you’re like, ‘That stuff doesn’t work here’.

EVANS: Well, the first day of two-a-days. We had about a three-hour-plus practice in the morning in that south Florida sun. You guys know what it’s like down there in late July, early August. And then that night we had another practice under the lights, if I recall I think it was about from 6 to 9.

Jeno James, our best offensive lineman at the time, comes in and collapses after practice, uh, vomiting all kinds of stuff that would make a billygoat puke, eyes rolled in the back of his head. Myself, about four other lineman are trying to carry him from the locker room, to the training room.

Obviously it’s a moment of panic, everyone, you know, we don’t know if this guy’s, you know, gonna die, I mean, the whole deal. But he’s so big and sweaty and heavy that we actually have to set him down in the hallway between the locker room and the training room.

Nick Saban literally just starts walking in, steps over Jeno James convulsing, doesn’t say a word, doesn’t try to help, goes upstairs, I don’t know what he does. But then obviously they get Jeno trauma-offed to the hospital.

Saban calls a team meeting about 10:30 that night, comes down and says, ‘You know, the captain of the ship can never show fear or indecision, we’ve always gotta have an answer, and so I had to go upstairs, that’s why I walked over Geno like that, I had to collect my thoughts and decide what’s best for our team.’

And I’m thinking to myself, I think along with Jason Taylor and Zach Thomas and Yeremiah Bell and all these other guys going, ‘Did he, does he really believe what he’s just saying?’ He showed no human emotion for one of his best players. He literally stepped over him when four or five grown men are trying to carry Jeno to the training room.
COME TO think of it, I'm shocked that people are shocked. What's the difference between Saban, now the Alabama football coach, and the Wall Street investment bankers who step over the convulsing American economy to collect their thoughts and decide what's best for the firm's bottom line . . . and theirs?

What's the difference between Saban and any number of CEOs of American corporations, who make about 300 times what the workers they're about to lay off make?

Saban's behavior is just the distilled, small-enough-to-grasp version of the kind of crap from which we've been averting our eyes for a long time now. The macroculture of America sometime near its fall is too all-encompassing for us to comprehend -- much like the proverbial blind men, each one of them running his hands across a different part of an elephant and "seeing" vastly different things.

The erstwhile coach of the Miami Dolphins stepping over the convulsing body of one of his star players to go "
collect my thoughts and decide what’s best for our team" is small enough -- and personally callous enough for us to recognize a deeply self-important, self-involved, self-serving and self-deluded man.

In other words, Saban's exactly the kind of guy we're happy to put in charge of a college football team of impressionable young men, ages 18 to 23. The kind of guy Alabama is happy to have a statue of outside Bryant-Denny Stadium. God knows LSU loved him . . . until it didn't.

Then again, it's amazing the things we're willing not to notice so long as there are games to win and money to make. Ask Penn State.

P.S.: Oh . . . and there's this:
SEDANO: I mean, are you serious? Well, listen, I know for a fact that people in that office, they weren’t even allowed to look at him, for God’s sake! Like, I heard a story about his secretary telling him he had a nice haircut, he kind of like grunted at her and kept walking. And then someone later, this Scotty O’Brien, that hatchet man that he had, came up to her and says, ‘You’re not allowed to speak to the coach! Don’t you dare speak to the coach!’ Just nonsense that Scotty O’Brien - he had a hatchet man! What coach has a hatchet man?

P.P.S.: And, really, isn't there a discussion to be had in this country about the journalistic responsibility of sportswriters, who often end up "feeding the kitty" with coverage that plays right into the various fan-friendly -- and bank-account friendly -- myths of college and pro athletics?

For example, don't you think that people were talking, and talking a lot, about Saban's behavior around the Dolphins training camp? Don't you think that sportswriters and TV reporters heard some of it? Don't you think that an average reporter might consider that news?

Yes, there's a conversation to be had among (and about) sports journalists -- and others in the press as well -- about what doesn't get reported in the quest to keep people happy . . . and not get frozen out due to telling the public important, yet unflattering, facts about people like Nick Saban.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

My name is Suh. How do you do?
Now you're gonna die. . . .

The National Football League has its standards to uphold. It's not lawless, you know.

Commissioner Roger Goodell had to sit Detroit's Ndamukong Suh for two games just on account of the flying body parts.

By the way, the Taiwanese are deeply, deeply weird people. Entertaining, granted, but deeply, deeply strange.

You know what? I cannot wait for the guy who taught the Motor City Mauler everything he knows about being out of control -- that's writer Jen Floyd Engel's reasonable-enough assessment of Nebraska Coach Bo Pelini, at least -- to do something worthy of the Taiwanese-animator treatment himself.

I'm just sick that way.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Who dat mad about dat Saints coach?

Sean Payton bought a house.

Well, lots of people buy houses, albeit lots fewer than before the economy blew up. But what makes this deal by the New Orleans Saints head coach stand out has to do with that old real-estate saw --
"Location, location, location."

In this case, the location of the Payton family's new residence is suburban Dallas.

But, according to Payton and the Saints, the coach isn't going anywhere. Well, professionally. Physically, the fam is hauling butt to north Texas, while Payton keeps a New Orleans-area place to crash during the workweek.

Most places, this isn't a massive issue. Bad PR form on Payton's part, but not a massive issue.

Then again, most places ain't Louisiana, and especially ain't New Orleans.

YOU'D EXPECT a certain amount of fan grousing anywhere. That's what sports fans do -- act like total fanatics. Likewise, everywhere has a certain set percentage of cranks and doofuses.

It's just that, in the Gret Stet, the percentage is a little on the high side.

OK . . .
a lot on the high side.

You can tell that when you're reading stuff like this in the newspaper. By someone employed there. Paid good money (well, at least
money) to produce stuff like this.

Thus, we have the spectacle of a "sports correspondent" for the Houma
Courier/Thibodaux Daily Comet writing with such vehemence agin' a carpetbaggin' coach that one almost can picture Red Man juice flying from his twitching lips as he beat the hell out of his keyboard:
It seems the Paytons never wanted to live in Louisiana from the outset.

As a life-long Louisiana resident, this move by the Paytons tells me that they never liked our state or our way of life.

We have to deal with hurricanes and the BP oil spill has hurt our economy, but Louisiana always bounces back.

It is going to be hard to believe Payton when he promotes New Orleans or Louisiana when his family lives elsewhere.

If I was a Louisiana company that uses Payton as a spokesman, I would drop him immediately.
THAT'LL SHOW that Yankee son of a bitch! I bet he thinks he's better'n us.

Oh, wait.
I don't look at this move as Payton's first step to eventually working with the Dallas Cowboys. I look at it as an insult to New Orleans and our state. I guess we are just not good enough for the Paytons.
THERE you go, podna.

Of course, by that line of reasoning (such as it is), you also could argue the Gret Stet and its benighted citizenry "are just not good enough" for thousands upon thousands of its native sons and daughters -- and I am among that ever-growing number -- who willingly have chosen to move not only their families but themselves the hell out of not only New Orleans, but out of Louisiana altogether.

It happens . . . particularly in states that live their civic lives (such as they are) at the top of all the bad national lists and the bottom of all the good ones.

In other words, fat, disproportionately violent and uneducated is no way to go through life. Or have your kids think is normal.

That's a cruel way to put it, but what the hell other verdict is being delivered by the cold, hard facts of demography? What other verdict is being delivered by the history of a state perpetually u
nable to effectively govern itself?

What other verdict is being delivered by endemic political corruption? By lack of opportunity for its college graduates (underrepresented though they might be as a percentage of total population)?

AND THEN you have the disaster area that is New Orleans. Oh . . . and there was a hurricane there, too.

Listen, all you have to do is look at the state budget, and then look at the kind of racial mau-mauing surrounding the potential merger of one really bad mostly black New Orleans college into a mediocre mostly white one -- and then wonder what the hell percentage is there in such a dysfunctional civic landscape?

You could, but folks in my home state would rather work themselves into high dudgeon that some fellow from California who went to college in Illinois has not come to see life in the Gret Stet as the ultimate meaning of life. Face it, some folk just ain't gonna embrace the suck.

And when you think about it --
which Louisianians don't . . . and won't -- perhaps the biggest part of that never-ending suck is that there is not one chromosome of introspection in the Louisiana genome.

Not one.

This explains a lot. Including, probably, Sean Payton's real-estate transactions.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Bubba made a funny

You know how people are always asking "What were they thinking?" when something incredibly stupid happens somewhere?

In this case, I think we know exactly what the chyron operator at Louisville's WLKY television was thinking when he -- or she -- did the sports graphics Sunday night. And that, friends, is the problem.

I admit, I bust a gut over this one, though the sentiment that would prompt some alleged television professional to type in "Jew York Jets" isn't funny at all. The ROTFLMAO factor in this probably has something to do with a) it's Kentucky, b) the responsible party's name is Bubba, isn't it? and c) picturing, in your mind's eye, the aftermath of this one.

But the more I think about this thing, the madder I get.

FOR ONE THING, it's 2011. "Jew York Jets"? Really?

For another thing, it's 2011 -- do you realize how many people there are out there flat-ass out of work? Do you realize how broadcasting has been shedding jobs like it's the newspaper industry or something?

Do you realize how lucky the jackwagon idiot responsible for "Jew York Jets" was to have the job he (or, again, she) used to have (one hopes) and so cavalierly threw away (again, one hopes)?

You know how parents of a bygone era used to tell their kids to think of the starving children in China and clean their plates? In other words, be grateful for what you have and don't waste it.

Well, some jackass at WLKY never got told that by his or her parents. And a lot of "starving kids in China" probably aren't amused . . . except, perhaps, about the position that might be opening up at a TV station in Louisville.

P.S.: Do you think this thing just might cost WLKY a sponsor? Just wondering.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Every time a bell gets rung. . . .

You knew it would end like this, didn't you?

I think it was Clarence, the angel in training, who said that every time a bell gets rung, a washed-up quarterback texts pictures of his junk. Or his career flies out the window.

Or something. Cue Zuzu.

Anyway, Christmas bells were jing-jing-jingling Monday night during the Minneapolis mugging that probably means curtains for the latest incarnation of
Everybody's All-American. And the end came at the hands of a rookie, no less.

The Associated Press gets a head start on the latest remake of the Frank Deford novel that became a Taylor Hackford film, this version starring Brett Favre as Dennis Quaid as Gavin Grey:

Bundled up on the sideline in a heavy, gray coat, Brett Favre could only watch as Devin Hester and the Chicago Bears sped through the snow to the NFC North title.

Favre's surprise start ended with a concussion, perhaps putting him out for good, and the Bears spoiled Minnesota's first outdoor home game in 29 years.

Hester set the NFL record with his 14th kick return touchdown, running back a punt 64 yards for a score shortly after halftime to help the Bears fly past the Vikings 40-14 on a frosty, hard-hitting Monday night.

"You play long enough, you're going to get your bell rung," Favre said.

In the
second quarter, the Vikings lost Favre - possibly for good.

On third-and-4 from the Bears 48, Wootton got in the backfield and grabbed Favre by his non-throwing shoulder, slamming him to the cold turf players had worried about in the days before the game. The career leader in almost every major statistical category for quarterbacks, Favre lay motionless for a few seconds before climbing to his feet and walking off with his head hung down.
BRETT'S GONNA spend some time at home now and "cut a little grass"? That's what Gavin Grey did a lot of -- beer in hand -- once his playing days were done.

GRASS CUTTIN' never turns out positively.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

That settles it

It's scientifically official: Tom Dempsey da man!

As it turns out, the New Orleans Saints' place kicker made his 63-yard field goal the hard way in 1970.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Happy Dempsey Day!

Forty years ago today, Nov. 8, 1970, a guy with half a foot kicked himself into the record books . . . and into the hearts of New Orleans Saints fans forever and ever, amen.

The scene: Tulane Stadium.

The foe: the Detroit Lions.

The score: Detroit 17, New Orleans 16.

Until. . . .

Peter Finney of the New Orleans
Times-Picayune picks up the story:

"Tell Stumpy to get ready to go in and kick a long one,'' said Heinrich that sunny Sunday in Tulane Stadium.

A 22-year-old kid, born with half a right foot and four fingers missing on his right hand, had no idea "long" meant 63 yards.

With 11 seconds remaining, Errol Mann of the Detroit Lions had just booted an 18-yard field goal to put his team ahead, 17-16.

Now, with two seconds left, the Saints had the ball at their 45-yard-line, following a kickoff return by Al Dodd and Dodd's catch of a Billy Kilmer pass as he went out of bounds.

In those days, the goalposts were on the goal line, not at the rear of the end zone.

As Dempsey looked downfield into the north end zone, the uprights reminded him of "a tiny target'' for someone who had booted three field goals that day, the longest from 29 yards.

"I was more concerned about kicking it straight because I felt I could handle the distance, whatever it was,'' Dempsey said. "I knew I was going to get a perfect snap from Jackie Burkett and a perfect hold from Joe Scarpati. It was all up to me. I had to hit it sweet.''

Dempsey had complete confidence in Scarpati. "Joe told me he was going to put it down eight yards behind the snap, a yard longer than normal. He asked the linemen to hold their blocks a little longer.''

As Scarpati awaited the snap at the Saints' 37, with the crossbar sitting 63 yards away, Kilmer, standing on the sidelines, remembered some members of the Detroit special team laughing. "They thought Tom had no chance,'' he said.

Dempsey would remember something else: a photograph he was given days later.

"It's my favorite,'' he said. "It doesn't show me. It shows what Wild Bill Cody did defending the rush. Bill used his body to take care of the inside rusher and he used his foot to take care of the guy on the outside, who was the great Alex Karras. Wild Bill kicked Karras in the groin.''

And there went Tom Dempsey's historic kick, sailing north, actually sailing a shade more than 63 yards (the ball unofficially cleared the crossbar by a foot).

And there went Dempsey, carried off the field on the shoulders of teammates.


Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Glory bound

In the beginning (OK . . . 1983), there was the "Who Dat" song.

Now, the creators of dat have brought you dis Saints anthem -- "Glory Bound," featuring a couple of true New Orleans musical treasures, Theresa Andersson and Aaron Neville.

AREN'T YOU happy the Saints won the Super Bowl? After all, what could Indianapolis come up with for the Colts?

Anyone? Anyone?

I guess Indianapolis could have brought in Johnny Cougar John Cougar Mellencamp John Mellencamp to do "I Fight the Saints and the Saints Always Win," but what the hell fun would that have been? No, you're really glad the Saints won, and that you have New Orleans folk providing the Super Bowl soundtrack.

And if you buy the single, part of the proceeds go to the New Orleans Musicians' Clinic. Dat's cool, bra!

Go to the Lombardi Gras

You thought Mardi Gras day was big in New Orleans.

The Saints' victory parade on Dat Tuesday dwarfed anything the Crescent City ever has seen. Hell, this is something longtime fans thought -- on our darker days -- that we might never see.

Pardon us if we're freaking out . . . but damn! I mean, that's Saints Coach Sean Payton holding the Lombardi Trophy over his head.

"World champions" and "Saints" are words we're not used to putting together.


Who dat!?!

Happy Dat Tuesday

In other words, "never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never -- in nothing, great or small, large or petty -- never give in."

Monday, February 08, 2010

How ta save dem noospapah, dawlin'

Cher, we awl know tings fo' dem noospapah industry is bad bad.

Dey ain't sellin' no noospapah no mo', and da advuhtisah is advahtisin' on da Intanets, but not da noospapahs' Intanets. It hard hard, cher.

But dey hope, Cap!

I TINK I foun' a way ta save da noospapah industry, baby. Yeah, you right!

Now, all you got ta do ta save dem noospapah in your town is to win da Supah Bowl every damn day uh da year. You get da team in your town ta do dat on a regulah basis, baby, and money goin' ta be growin' on dem trees.

Why am I tawkin' lak dis? I don' know, Cap. But dat ain't impotant now.

Look at dis from Editah & Publishah -- which was dead but now it not, because some trade papah company done bought it an' fiyah haff dah staff, but dat ain't impotant now, eidah:
By noon Monday, The Times-Picayune had printed at least 200,000 copies over its ordinary number of single-copy papers -- and the printing presses were still running to keep up with the extraordinary demand for newspapers proclaiming the New Orleans Saints Super Bowl victory.

"It's a totally moving target," Times-Picayune Editor Jim Amoss said of the ever-growing press run. "The presses are still going and we are trying to satisfy a demand which doesn't seem to slack." A normal press run for single-copy sales would be about 25,000.

When Amoss arrived for work at the paper Monday morning, he said, the line of people waiting to buy copies stretched all the way around its imposing building. "When I drove up this morning," he said, "I literally gasped. I've never seen anything like this."

Waiting in line was a cross-section of New Orleans of all occupations and races. Walking away were buyers with bundles of 20 or 30 papers, Amoss added.

The coveted front page pictures a triumphant Saints quarterback Drew Brees under a five-inch single word headline: "AMEN!"
IT AS "BIG EASY" as dat, bra. Get you a team, win you a Supah Bowl aftah fawty-three year.

Now, I know you gonna lose you azz fo' 42 year, but you gonna clean up aftah dat, podnah. I promiss you dat.

Another Super Bowl the Colts couldn't lose


Sunday, February 07, 2010

Never give in

Pigs flew. Hell froze over. The world came to an end. Baptists drank their own beer.

God Almighty, the New Orleans Saints just won the Super Bowl!

Tears were shed.

For 43 years, people like me -- people from the Gret Stet of Loosiana -- have been settling for picking a temporary favorite team in the Super Bowl because the Super Bowl was no place for our team, the oft-woeful Saints. For the likes of us, the NFL experience often was best taken in through the eye holes of a paper bag.

The one with "Ain'ts" written on the outside.

FOR 43 YEARS, more often than not, when you told somebody who wasn't from your neck of the woods that you were a Saints fan, the response was laughter. Or condolences. One was as bad as the other.

We done wid all dat now. Who dat say dey gonna beat dem Saints? Not a damn body, dat who!

Louisiana is a poor state, one where the schools weren't good enough, and the government wasn't honest enough, and the jobs didn't pay enough, and our expectations weren't high enough. Sometimes, we figured we were just born to lose.

Born to lose on the pro gridiron, and born to lose in the greater scheme of America. No. 1? That's where Louisiana finished in all the bad national rankings -- illiteracy . . . poverty . . . corruption . . . whatever.

YEARS AGO, a favorite New Orleans sportscaster said he'd parade down Bourbon Street in a fancy dress if the Saints ever made it to the Super Bowl. Last week, thousands -- tens of thousands -- of cross-dressing New Orleans men paraded down Bourbon in honor of Buddy Diliberto, who never lived to make good on his promise.

This week . . .

Pigs flew. Hell froze over. The world came to an end. And Baptists drank their own damn beer.

Jesus, Mary and Joseph! There is hope. The impossible is possible.

Who knows? In another 43 years, Louisiana may be on top of all the good lists and the bottom of all the bad.

Who knows? Louisiana might be a rich state, one where the schools are the best anywhere, and the government surpasses Scandinavian levels of orderliness and efficiency, and the jobs pay well indeed, and our expectation is one of excellence.

IN THE WAKE of this most improbable of nights, my mind keeps drifting to what Winston Churchill told his battered, bloodied, frightened nation in 1941 after Nazi Germany had failed -- just -- to bomb it into oblivion:

You cannot tell from appearances how things will go. Sometimes imagination makes things out far worse than they are; yet without imagination not much can be done. Those people who are imaginative see many more dangers than perhaps exist; certainly many more than will happen; but then they must also pray to be given that extra courage to carry this far-reaching imagination. But for everyone, surely, what we have gone through in this period - I am addressing myself to the School - surely from this period of ten months this is the lesson: never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never-in nothing, great or small, large or petty - never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy. We stood all alone a year ago, and to many countries it seemed that our account was closed, we were finished. All this tradition of ours, our songs, our School history, this part of the history of this country, were gone and finished and liquidated.
BACK TO the unlikely present, it seems to me we can take the same lesson from this football band of free agents, late-round draft picks, castoffs and reclamation projects: "[N]ever give in, never give in, never, never, never, never-in nothing, great or small, large or petty - never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy."

It might look hopeless. It might take 43 damn years. But never give in . . . "never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never-in nothing, great or small, large or petty - never give in."