Thursday, September 10, 2015

Are You Ready for Some Footbaw?

Tonight, the first game of the 2015 NFL season kicks off. FOOTBAW! Whoooooooo! America!

Eh, whatever.

It was three years ago in this spot that I renounced my Washington Redskins fandom. Many readers scoffed in the comments section, predicting that I'd be back, that I'd find being a football fan without a team distasteful. So I chose a team.

I even made a trip to New Orleans to consummate my relationship with the Saints. Um, wait, that sounds weird. I didn't go to New Orleans to do that - I went to drink a shitload, listen to incredible music, and eat way too much. That part went really well.

But the Saints thing didn't take. Even so, I haven't looked back on leaving the Redskins. Their performance on the field, and more importantly, continued abject dysfunction and deaf disregard for fans and public opinion have made that breakup particularly easy on me.

And now, as a new season dawns, I find myself...unmoved. Used to be, the start of a new NFL season was a cause for celebration. Today, I think it's unlikely that I'll even watch the Patriots and the Steelers. And Sunday, I've got to travel to Charlottesville for my daughter's soccer game, and typing this sentence is the first I realized that it'll mean I won't watch any NFL games that day.

I'm fine with that.

I really don't know what the tipping point was in my drift away from professional football. Certainly, the NFL's grotesquely mishandled "investigation" of the Patriots' footballs played a role, and the league's egregious self-importance in that and so many other public efforts. I think the growing consensus regarding the game's impact on player health and the gladiatorial implications is a part of it. My burgeoning interest in soccer, too. (Two weeks ago, when my family was out of town, I watched 8 soccer games in a weekend. I don't know if I'll watch 8 NFL games all season.)

But whatever the reason, I really don't care that the NFL is starting today. I know lots of you do, though, so enjoy. Here's some Morrissey to get you in the mood.



43 comments:

T.J. said...

nice beaks

rootsminer said...

I share Rob's waning interest in the NFL, though I'll probably tune in tonight.

Stoked to see Fox is showing a Bayern Munich match on Sunday afternoon. Most of my Sundays through Mid November will be consumed with travel soccer.

TR said...

I'm totally with you, Rob, even if you are a dirty leftie.

My interest crested like a wave a few years ago. It's a combination of: feeling the NFL turn into a blatant money-sucking machine (the extra point -> commercial -> kickoff -> commercial should be outlawed), realizing many of the players are on a road to brain damage, seeing the game become awkward as rules shift to minimize brain damage, seeing the utter dumbassery of many rules changes on things like celebrating, having an uninspiring run as a Jets season ticket holder, and falling in love with European soccer and its 2-hour matches.

I found myself chugging college football previews, but saying meh to most NFL previews.

Dave said...

gambling on fantasy football has gotten me back into the nfl, but now my rooting is a weird fragmented mess. i still watch the second half of the giants game, if i'm not coaching soccer . . .

zman said...

Dave = Fred Exley.

zman said...

Who is that Nadal/Hilfiger ad aimed at? What is it supposed to be selling?

Mark said...

I've always been a bigger CFB fan which is due, in large part, to my southern upbringing and my early live exposure to many memorable CFB games. I'm sure the Bucs being a disaster for most of my youth didn't help. I still watch plenty of the NFL but it's not appointment viewing for me in the way CFB is.

Shlara said...

Stay classy Norfolk:

http://pix11.com/2015/09/10/virginia-couple-admits-to-getting-drunk-having-sex-in-middle-of-shopping-center-parking-lot/

mayhugh said...

I am going to focus on CFB this year. For me, the league has gotten to the point where the games are less a focal point than the coverage. NFL is covered as if it were baseball. Too many talking heads, local sports talk, etc. discussing the teams every day. There are typically 7 days between games - there is not that much to rehash and it is done to death. Maybe this would be less annoying if the local team was not the Skins.

I had a fine time being an NFL agnostic for most of last year. I think my interest will largely be limited to fantasy this year.

Clarence said...

Shlara, thanks for some coverage of our fair city.

Rootsy, no Lockn for you?

TR said...

David DeGea's decision to resign with Manchester United is a welcome, albeit surprising, ending to a farcical story among soccer's superpowers.

He'll now have a few more quid in his pocket to make his grumpy girlfriend content to stay in Manchester.

rob said...

re: the story shlara linked, does clarence have an alibi?

TR said...

Clarence puts the fuck in "Nah-fuck"

Mark said...

One of my Dads favorite stories is of seeing Norfolk State play in the NAIA Tournament whilst in college and hearing the very attractive Norfolk State cheerleaders come out with the cheer "We don't drink. We don't smoke. Nahfuck, Nahfuck, Nahfuck!"

'Twas quite an eye opener for him and his fellow Midwestern white friends.

rob said...

the fact that the very first game of the nfl season created yet another stupid, avoidable controversy is mind-boggling and completely par for the course at the same time. a pox on all your houses, lord football.

TR said...

But is it:

a) a true controversy,
b) the media overhyping something on a slow sports news day, and/or
c) sour grapes by Omar Epps?

rob said...

yes

TR said...

You forgot to mention the train wrecks that were the faces/heads of the NBC crew last night: Costas' Strawberry Shortcake hair, Michelle Tafoya's botched botox job that resulted in cartoon villain eyebrows, and the Brillo pad look Al Michaels is rocking these days.

zman said...

Isn't it advantageous for the Steelers to listen to the Patriots' play calls?

T.J. said...

It was the Pats' radio broadcast, not their coaches' communications.

zman said...

I liked Collinsworth's comments on the Berman opinion. He said something like "I was up until 1 am trying to read that thing and it didn't talk about the facts of the case! It was all about due process and notice. Pshaw!" He should read G:TB instead.

Clarence said...

That's good advice for everybody.

Clarence said...

And Mark, that is our city slogan.

rob said...

also our friend whitney's mayoral campaign slogan. truth in advertising not necessarily being important in this case.

Clarence said...

Not much GTB acknowledgment of 9/11 today.

The mantra all over social media today and every 9/11 is "never forget." As it that were humanly possible. I have tattoos less permanent that the memories of grief, despair, and hopelessness as we waited in vain for news to the contrary. I'll just read these and remember my peeps fondly.

9/11/2014

9/11/2011

9/11/2008

rootsminer said...

Clarence, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers are the only act that has tempted me to go to Lockn. I just can't dig the festy scene - last one was in 2010 when I volunteered the jug band for FloydFest when I found out Levon Helm was playing it. Damn glad I got to see Levon and his band that night.

rob said...

it's too easy just to say 'never forget' and move on with your day. 9/11 was and is so personal to so many people. i don't begrudge anyone their particular means of dealing with their memories. i do, though, struggle with the notion that a slogan or a facebook post with a logo or a picture represents anything meaningful. frankly, we're still fucked up 14 years later, and we're dealing with political and social repercussions that will last for decades. as clarence says, nobody's going to forget any time soon. every year, i just want this day to end.

Danimal said...

the wife encountered a snake in the house this morning. and no, unfortunately we are not talking about morning sex.

TR said...

Last year was the first year I really noticed the lack of attention from print media. More of the same this year, but we'll get a 15th anniversary uptick next year.

Nobody under 35 (which is obviously a huge % of the workforce) in NY was working then. And most folks under 25 were too young to really grasp the magnitude at that time.

The day always makes me very sad. I sometimes force myself to watch one of the docs that gets run at night every year, just to remember, but it usually leaves me depressed. I am happy when I can go a few hours w/o being reminded.

I went to the gym in my lobby at noon today. As I pedaled on a stationary bike, they were at the "T" portion of reading the victims' names. Sure enough, they read the name of Greg Trost, a Theta Delt a grade behind me. He was an all-around good dude who I only got to know after graduating. He was 26 when he passed, the same age I was.

T.J. said...

Serena lost?

rob said...

i don't agree entirely with this, but i agree with the sentiment: http://www.thetakeaway.org/story/911-anniversary/

TR said...

Tough week one for a Survivor pool. I took Seattle, but don't feel great about it.

Marls said...

Mark, are you going to the Gator game on Saturday night? If not do you want to watch it and the go TP the Bizzaro's house? Mrs Marls and I will be in town to sample my cousin's new restaurant.

Mark said...

I'm not, Marls. I'll be around. What's the restaurant?

zman said...

If it's cousin Steve you're in for a good time.

Dave said...

the motto for 9/11 at school today was "we don't remember." first group of kids i've taught that don't remember the event-- they were between one and three years of age. it's kind of nice, because it was pretty traumatic for most of the kids i've had in class (and for me) and i don't really like the direction america turned since 9/11. i'm sure there were a bunch of fucked up folks in 1826 saying "never forget," but -- thank god- everyone forgot and moved on.

TR said...

Cousin Steve is the best.

Marls said...

The place is called Backwater and we are going for breakfast on Sunday. Unfortunately it's not Cousin Steve.

Mark said...

I'm aware of Backwater. It's in downtown Melbourne, which TJ is familiar with. My stepdaughter has been asking to go because they let you make your own pancakes. It's only a few miles from our house.

Mark said...

Based solely on the first single I'm going to say the Big Boi/Phantogram EP is going to be dope.

rootsminer said...

Speaking of football, how 'bout them Nats, eh? The whole season's been building up to this 71-69 record.

Donna said...

I find the comment thread here fascinating as you cover music, football, food, and 9/11, kind of all mashed-up together. And maybe that's where we are all as a nation 14 years later, sort of.
I led a service of Remembrance and Prayers for Peace today on campus, and it is quite striking that overwhelmingly the folks who show-up are the staff and faculty. Because they are the adults who were adults when it happened. We had less than 10 students in the crowd.
But it was good. And I find myself on this day every year always wanting to go to a service or a remembrance of some kind...ritual is a big deal for me. We rang a bell a number of times - for each plane, each site, etc...it was good. And we had law-enforcement folks there, too. I think because the world is still so full of strife and struggle and war and violence - we need to remember and hope for better, and how we can be part of making it better.
Maybe by having less interest in football ?! (Though our oldest has a fantasy team for the first time this year, and wow - he's hooked!) Sort of kidding there, but you know what I mean. Thanks for letting me go-on a bit. Y'all enjoy the weekend!!

rob said...

you don't find all of our comment threads fascinating? historians will study them as artifacts of early middle-aged american dipshittery for years to come.