Ten Righteous Moments
Nine Head-lines We Want (in 2009)
Seven clips you-tubing
Four awful words
Two sweet 'stache photos
2008 was a banner year in Gheorghedom. We broke through the critical mass barrier, adding celebrated pundits Rhymenocerous and Mark to create the internet’s first mega-micro blog (defined as having more writers than readers). The multi-mentioned William & Mary Tribe hoops squad had the best postseason in school history, and our coverage led to a G:TB mention in the W&M Alumni Magazine – on the same day we celebrated George Carlin’s Seven Words. Sorry, Mom. GTB staffers met Sugar Ray Leonard, Michael Litos, Extra P, and our namesake. We gained actual female readers. We dealt with the difficult issues of our time: hangovers, heightism, mustaches, and recently, in a very special GTB post, lactation. As we close the book on this eventful annum, we look forward with a renewed sense of (no) purpose and a commitment to windmill-tilting and lunatic populism. But until Baby New Year waddles into view, a brief look back at the things that tickled our sporting fancy in 2008:
Usain Bolt breaks the sound barrier. GTB's a sucker for the Olympics, and Bolt's performance in the sprint events went beyond dominant, past plaid, all the way to interstellar. His paradigm-shifting performance changed the way we think about the limits of human physical ability. Only slightly less impressive was the sychronized drum/dance/acrobatics of what appeared to be the entire population of China in the Opening Ceremonies.
Roger Clemens and O.J. Simpson feel karma's cold kiss. Our disdain for the Texas Con Man is as long-documented as it is irrational. That disclaimer noted, there were very few stories in 2008 that warmed our bully-hating hearts more than the grotesque dance between Clemens, Brian McNamee, George Mitchell, and the U.S. Congress. And if Clemens is the object of rob's lunatic disdain, O.J. Simpson is Teejay's white whale. Ahab finally got his man.
Tommy Smyth says 'onion bag'. We've never been above a little (more than a little) 'you had to be there' humor. In an inside joke for 3 or 4, we had a spirited liveblog commentary over at Mark's old stomping grounds during the UEFA Champions League Final between Manchester United and Chelsea. Early in the match, I offered Mark a bottle of Jameson's if the word 'onion' was uttered at any time during the telecast, after Mark made mention of Bill Raftery. And during extra time, the brilliant Smyth broke off an 'onion bag', clear as day. Cracking good match despite the fact that ManU won on penalties, and an excellent waste of a few workday hours. And someday Mark may even see that bottle.
Alabama becomes Gatorbait. In a terrific game that may have exceeded the hype, Florida defeated Alabama, 31-20, in the SEC Championship game. In an awe-inspiring feat of prognostication that will never, ever exceed the hype that we'll give it for the next several decades, Mark and I both predicted that exact result.David Tyree channels Lester Hayes. In a most unexpected Super Bowl, the Giants' Tyree made one of the more improbable big-game catches of all-time, pinning the ball to his helmet while Rodney Harrison clawed desperately at him. (Seriously, look at that picture. How in hell did Tyree hold that ball without a Hayesian amount of stickum?) Lost somewhat in the excitement of the catch is Eli Manning's desperate scramble to avoid a sack on the play that ultimately defined the Giants' comeback.
Peter King finally comes to his senses. And Art Monk finally gets into the Hall of Fame.
Stephen Curry gets his mom some much-deserved airtime. Dell, you funky homosapien. First Steph goes all Teen Wolf on Georgetown and Wisconsin, then little brother Seth starts killing fools for Liberty. All the while, you roll into arenas all around America with Mrs. Curry on your arm and a whole nation of Hokies praying you have a third son.
David Schneider wreaks vengeance. Yes, William & Mary basketball gets a disproportionate amount of coverage here. Yes, we've already covered Tribe sports at least twice in the 12 days. Yes, it's a little bit pathetic. But Schneider's jumper at the buzzer to beat Georgia State in the first round of the CAA Tournament was the best sports moment I saw live this year, and it kicked off a thoroughly improbable and dizzying 4 days of dreaming the impossible dream. And it is our blog, and you will listen to every word we say.