Monday, August 23, 2010

MMTMQR: New Season, Same Shit

Come one, come all- marvel at Gregg's continuing inability to suspend disbelief when he watches TV, understand how clocks work in the context of sports, or get over the fact that sometimes events get advertised a few months before they happen.

But isn't getting the outcome right what matters? If everybody knows the right outcome is a Galarraga perfect game, why not bring about the right outcome?

The problem is that a bad call or calls alone can't be grounds for reversal of outcome, since it's impossible to know how the game would have unfolded later if the calls had been correct.

Consider the two disputed calls against Seattle in the Seahawks-Steelers Super Bowl. Had those calls been correct, Pittsburgh might have gone on to win regardless. There also were two arguable calls that went Seattle's way -- would those be reversed, too? It sucked for Seattle that two bad fourth-quarter calls occurred (and that the zebras failed to impose the time-honored, corrective, makeup calls). But in that case, the only alternative would have been to replay the entire game.

First of all, no fucking shit. Thanks for explaining that. This is like sitting down a 17 year old kid and telling them how babies are made. Second of all, keep this kind of normal and obvious logic (changing an event at time X will affect all events that took place at times X + anything) in mind for later in Gregg's article.

As for Tuesday Morning Quarterback, I'm back and I'm bad!


Well, I'm back.

Oh no he didn't!

What follows is my annual review of offseason nuttiness.

What follows is the printed word equivalent of being kicked directly in the balls.

New York Being in New Jersey Seems Accurate by Comparison: In the NCAA men's basketball tournament, Milwaukee and Buffalo played host to West Regional games. Spokane, Wash., played host to Midwest Regional games. San Jose, Calif., played host to East Regional games.

ABSURD! Why don't they DO anything about this? IT MAKES NO SENSE. Meanwhile, Americans everywhere continue to care about 10,000 other more important things.

"Later On, We'll Conspire ..." On Feb. 26, the ice skating rink in Prospect Park in Brooklyn, N.Y., was closed -- because of snow.

I just think it's funny that Gregg can't imagine how this might happen/finds it hilarious or notable that it did happen and thus found it worthy of inclusion in this column.

In retrospect, could that nationally televised kiss have been more evidence that everything about Al Gore is phony? When Sandra Bullock and Scarlett Johansson played tongue hockey at the MTV Movie Awards, their mega-smooch was obviously done for publicity; they didn't claim to be in love. Al, on the other hand, wanted us to believe his feelings for Tipper were genuine.

Nice analysis, and only ten years too late. Why this fuck is this worthy of discussion? Next week, Gregg tackles the pressing question of today: where is Britney Spears's music career headed?

BOEMRE to the Rescue: After the spill, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar changed the name of the Minerals Management Service to the unpronounceable Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement. Replacing one agency with three is a classic government response -- the bureaucracy failed, so let's have more bureaucracy!

Smugness: A+. Accuracy: no credit awarded. Surprisingly, making the title of a government office longer is not the same as dividing it into multiple offices.

Cold Coach = Victory: Reader Jerrod Ewing of Columbia, S.C., notes that when the United States lost to Ghana in the World Cup, U.S. coach Bob Bradley wore a ski parka, though the temperature in Rustenberg, South Africa, was 52 degrees Fahrenheit.

Yep, he's still talking about this.

Boston led the series 3-2, then lost the last two. In those contests, big man Rasheed Wallace heave-hoed 10 3-point attempts, missing nine; had Wallace simply stayed near the basket in Game 7, a four-point Celtics loss, Boston might have won the NBA championship.

It's only fair to mention that he used the word "might," but this is the kind of writing that I think juxtaposes nicely with the introductory paragraph (about why it's not worth reviewing officials' calls in most cases). Obviously you can't change a call in hindsight, because that might have changed the path of the rest of the game... but you CAN suppose that if one player had played differently during a game which involved 20 players, the outcome would have changed entirely.

LeBron James has never won an NBA championship -- as opposed to, say, Derek Fisher, who owns five rings.

This is the kind of analysis that gets you millions on Around the Horn. And hey, I hear there's a spot opening up! TOO SOON????!?!?!

What exactly are his accomplishments, beyond making money and getting media attention?

Being amazing at basketball?

Supposedly, James is unstoppable, but in the playoffs he has been stopped on an annual basis.

He has yet to win a title (unlike Derek Fisher, who is obviously superior in every way)- he has also averaged 29 points, 8 rebounds, and 7 assists in 71 career playoff games. If that counts as being "stopped," just call me Bruce Bowen!

Bruce Bowen, Robert Horry and Michael Finley: These are players who started against James the one time he reached the NBA Finals and defeated him. Horry owns seven NBA championship rings; he is a substantially more accomplished basketball player than James.

See above.

Yes, James wins trophies for himself. The most tedious figures in sports are the ones who collect individual awards but never make their teammates better.

Like much of America, I'm a LeBron hater these days. But those two sentences are so dumb they're not even worth addressing directly. I just figured I'd copy and paste them here for your enjoyment. Also: David Eckstein >>>>>>> Barry Bonds.

Once, James seemed a special person because he was loyal to Ohio, a nonglamorous place with all kinds of problems. When James made his announcement, the carefully screened little kids at the Boys & Girls Club of Greenwich, Conn., didn't clap; they groaned in unison.

No one groaned. Stop being so dramatic- you make me want to set myself on fire. (Credit to Lindsay Bluth)

The Queen of England announced she would cut her personal staff of 1,400, which includes an official "counter of swans."

EMPLOYMENT COUNSELOR: Your résumé notes you have experience as a counter of swans. We don't get a lot of calls for that.

COUNTER: An official counter of swans. I was the Queen's official counter. Unofficial swan estimates can be deceiving.

Good to see that Simmons is brushing up on his comedy writing skills by helping Gregg out with his TMQ column.

The "V" Aliens Can Build Enormous Faster-Than-Light Starcruisers, Yet Don't Understand Cell Phones: There's not much out there on TV for science fiction aficionados: "V" is awful, "Stargate Universe" is plodding and "Fringe" is only sorta sci-fi.

As for "V," we are asked to believe that enormous starcruisers could


I See Big Profits ... No, Wait, I See the FBI ... Sean David Morton, who claims both the gift of prophecy and remote-viewing ability, was sued by the Securities and Exchange Commission, which alleges he swindled $6 million from investors by claiming he could foresee movements in currency markets. Why didn't he foresee getting caught?

One of Gregg's more "under the radar" idiotic bits that he uses all too often. Yes, people out there advertise themselves as psychic. No, none of them are actually psychic. Thanks for blowing the lid off that story, Gregg. Thanks for bringing it to light.

They Should Have Eaten Doughnuts on the Ice: Hockey Canada issued a formal apology when members of the women's Canadian national team drank beer and smoked cigars on the ice after winning the gold medal at the Vancouver Olympics. In Canada, drinking beer at hockey games is seemingly mandatory: the problem was that some team members are below the legal drinking age in British Columbia. What TMQ wants to know is how the women got beer onto the ice mere seconds after the contest concluded. Isn't the only possible explanation that the Canadian women's hockey team went into the Olympic finals with a cooler of beer at their bench?

Why didn't the hockey Gods punish them for their hubris? You'd better believe the football Gods wouldn't have tolerated that shit. Shocking that Gregg bothered to bring this up, actually- he usually only writes about something if it reinforces one of his long standing theses (here, that being cocky will cause a team to lose because a mythical figure or figures controls the team's fate).

Christmas Creep:


Unified Field Theory of Creep: The year's first summer movie, "Iron Man 2," opened on May 7. As noted by many readers, including Leah Tilford of Madison, Wis., the opening-week ads proclaimed, "Summer officially begins Friday!" That "official" start of summer came weeks before school ended and 45 days prior to the June solstice. This "summer" movie had already closed before the summer solstice arrived.

The audacity. Will someone please stop the madness? It's almost as if movie studios acknowledge the season of summer in such a way that fits the common definition many people assign to the season.

Clang! Clang! Clang! No. 1 seed Kentucky missed 20 consecutive 3-point attempts on the way to 4-of-32 3-point shooting in losing to West Virginia in the men's NCAA basketball tournament. And the game was close to the end -- there was no need to go trey-wacky. Shortly afterward, all five Kentucky starters left school early for the pro basketball draft. All five became first-round choices -- though playing together, they weren't good enough to reach the Final Four. Those failed 3s meant Kentucky players only care about their own stats, not whether the team wins.

Shockingly, this is only the second dumbest passage in the column (after the LeBron doesn't make his teammates better thing). Attempting three pointers means you don't care about your teammates. In fact, that's what attempting field goals of any kind means! Real TEAMS win without attempting any FGs. Or free throws- those are a sign of not properly respecting the game.

Clang! Clang! Clang! In his first game with the Cleveland Cavaliers, megabucks All-Star Antawn Jamison went 0-for-12. In his final game of the season, Jamison went 2-for-10.

And that's just character assassination. No commentary- just raw stats and an implicit conclusion that this guy blows because he had a couple of bad games. Glad you're back, Gregg! See you every Wednesday/Thursday/whenever I get to it this fall.


CB said...

1. Nice Lindsay Bluth reference, Larry.

2. Why do sportswriters continue to think that championships are an individual accomplishment? LeBron James is a fuckstick, but to flat-out say a bunch of bench players are more accomplished than him because they won titles on stacked teams is batfuck insane even by this idiot's standards.

Ramiro Pena has won a championship. Ted Williams won zero. What was so special about that Ted Williams guy?

Chris W said...

You would think a self-described economist would be aware of the concept of confirmation bias.

But then again, Gregggggg is a retard.

Adam said...

Greggg was so pissed about that skating rink being closed that he has remembered it every day since February 23.

Anonymous said...

I just realized something about 200 words into this; I cannot stand reading Easterbrook, so why the fuck am I reading some asshole who hates him 1000 times more than me get all riled up and respond with as nearly as unfunny shit?

I fucking get it now.

Dylan Murphy said...

The key with Greg is to imagine you're reading the ramblings of a 3rd grader. Then you can not only stoop down to his unintelligent level, but you can feel better about yourself as well.

Elliot said...

It must really get in Greggggggg's craw that many people feel the real start of summer is either Memorial Day or even *gasp* Opening Day in baseball.

Anonymous said...

But seriously though, if he annoys you that much, or if you think so little of him...the logical thing to do is to FUCKING IGNORE HIM! Or at the very least be better at this style of takedown than the 100's of others that have already done this?

Totally serious here.

Your thoughts?


Larry B said...

200 words, Anonymous? You'd barely have read the first half of Gregg's officiating point before reaching your conclusion. That's less realistic than Friday Night Lights!

Larry B said...

Anonymous at 4:26-

First of all, no one has ever done this before. I think we can all agree that FireJay is the first ever blog of this kind.

Second of all:

But seriously though, if he annoys you that much, or if you think so little of him...the logical thing to do is to FUCKING IGNORE HIM!

You don't really... get what this is about, do you?

CHart said...

Blog fight!

Frigidevil said...

@anonymous-poking fun at people who suck at their awesome job is just that, fun

@Larry-I love the reference to the best show ever, but cmon, that's a Lucille quote

Jack M said...

Larry B,

If you're too stupid to know that Fire Joe Morgan was LITERALLY the first group ever to do line by line LITERARY criticism, then you should self-immolate post haste.


Like all comedy, Larry B's posts are subjectively humorous. Personally, I laughed a few times, but I'm probably biased. To each his own and all that. However, there are two things that aren't in doubt:

1. Gregg Easterbrook is so obviously a moron at times (as you seem to agree) that he deserves someone calling him out on his bullshit.

2. You anonymously commenting "DURRRR EVEN THOUGH I AGREE WITH THE REASONING FOR THIS POST, IT'S NOT FUNNY ENOUGH TO MEET MY LOFTY STANDARDS," was at the same time both less funny and more whiney than Larry's post. In sum, you're chicken shit.

Chris W said...


Elliot said...

But seriously though.

Adam said...

I believe this is also the first time in teh history of teh internets somebody has commented that if you hate X person's writing you should just ignore it.

Anonymous said...

Gregg's understanding of science is about as extensive as Paris Hilton's understanding of fiscal responsibility.

Hey dipshit, maybe the aliens from V haven't had "cell phones" for thousands of years? Maybe they never had them? I mean, it's not like there's shit from 500 years ago that archaeologists look at and go "we don't know what the fuck that is."

In a show where an alien race knows the English language, the thing that makes Gregg go "GTFO" is the fact they don't understand cell phones (which are actually pretty complex, especially if you have no idea what they are).

Chris W said...

^^^now this anonymous i like

Anonymous said...

Yes "Jack M," you are sooooo much less anonymous than me. All this personal info you giving us: A first name that's probably fake. Oh, and the first initial of the last name, some courageous shit there.

But I am a chicken shit. Also stirring shit up actually gets some comments going.

Jack M said...

I never said that the fact that you commented anonymously was cowardly. However, the fact that you did so further highlights what a dipshit you are.

In terms of my courageous usage of the pseudonym "Jack M," if you read this site regularly and posses even the most cursory of internet research skills, you'll be able to figure out who I am in under 5 minutes.

And bravo for stirring up comments that deride you on a site that you don't think is nearly as funny as the other 100 sites that have done line by line criticisms before. You must be very proud.

rich said...

Gah, my comments keep getting deleted. Sorry for blowing up everyone's email...

Larry B said...

Has anyone here ever heard of or Kissing Suzy Kolber? Both of those blogs are far superior to this one.

/dated reference

Elliot said...

You guyz juzt dont cee the geenyus of trolling blogz. It really getz the convo goinggg!

Arjun Chandrasekhar said...

I don't mind when Gregg talks about football - some of his stuff is total bullshit, but sometimes he actually says something meaningful. but i hate when he talks about basketball. he doesn't know fucking shit about the game, but his loyal readers slurp it up because they believe everything that comes out of his mouth. "Lebron doesn't make his teammates better". ARE YOU FUCKING SERIOUS!!!!!!!!! how many all-star games did mo williams make before joining the cavs? how many times did they win 60 games before he got there? how many times did they make the finals without him? anyone who has an IQ over 10 can watch a game and see that the rest of the cavs players are scrubs who look awesome because LeBron makes it so. I'm not defending Lebron's offseason antics, but what gregg writes is so absurd.

I hate how every year he picks out random NBA games in which the teams didn't shoot well (with the implicit implication that NBA sucks). I could pick out a million games in which the teams were shooting with amazing efficiency. Or better yet why don't i pick out a few browns or bills games from the past years as evidence that NFL football sucks? god, don't talk about football gregg when you don't know a damn thing.

by the way everyone when you're done here make sure to check out for candid and insightful analysis.

dan-bob said...

Dude, Arjun, thanks for coming over and posting, man. I think if you want to drive more traffic to your site, you should probably update it more frequently. Content is king.

Anonymous said...

"if you read this site regularly and posses even the most cursory of internet research skills, you'll be able to figure out who I am in under 5 minutes."

No one gives a fuck who you are.

Elliot said...

^^^^Anonymous Troll does, though. Apparently. Watch out Jack!

I bet anonymous isn't even his real name. Coward.

Tonus said...

I wonder if any of these dipsticks who are on the "Lebron is a selfish asshole who only cares about his numbers and never wins titles" bandwagon are the same people who said this exact same thing about Michael Jordan. Then, after Jordan won a shitload of titles, these same dipsticks were lining up to tell us that he was THE CONSUMMATE WINNER.