Do I have to suffer another year of listening to Jon Gruden's fake enthusiasm, his self-important, self-serving, obnoxious analysis? It's particularly nauseating after listening to two professionals, Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth, discussing football intelligently, while providing reasonable insights into the game the night before on Sunday Night Football. Why, for pity's sake does the network think Gruden is at all interesting. Does Gruden believe he is channeling Dandy Don Meredith, the first Monday Nighter? Now there was an original. As for Gruden, he is an unreasonable facsimile of himself.
Thinking of Monday Night Football reminded me that Chet Forte, a basketball player and a contemporary of mine, was the first director of that show. In 1957 at Columbia University, Chet was voted a First Team All-American. I'd just started college at St. Mary's. Forte could shoot lights out from distance, and if the NBA had had a three point line back then, when he played, he might have had a much longer career as a pro.
Looks like the 49ers are for real. And so is Alex Smith who deserves a lot of credit for suffering the slings and arrows of the last four years. As for the Raiders, my old bud, Bill King, former play by play man for the Raiders, A's, and Warriors is turning over in his grave. I'm wondering if this continued carryover of silly mistakes and underachieving defense from the past isn't an Al Davis curse; there's precedence in sports - the curse of the Bambino, for example.
I would like to blog some more, but the Monday Night game is about to start, and I'm off to watch the game without sound. I'm a big Manning fan - both of them - but I have to give a leg up to the older bro.
Longevity counts, at least at my age it does.
P.S. I'm back. Just watched Payton Manning intercepted three times. Hallucinating, I think. And then, to bring his Broncos back in the 4th quarter. Lots of courage. The Falcons better find a running back.
Here's a wonderful old, very old classic poem about football written by Sir Walter Scott. The game of football, soccer to us, was developed in England in the 18th century?
Then strip, lads, and to it, though sharp be the weather,
And if, by mischance, you should happen to fail,
There are worse things in life than a tumble on heather,
And life is itself but a game at football.
And when it is over, we'll drink a blithe measure
To each Laird and each Lady that witnessed our fun,
And to every blithe heart that took part in our pleasure,
To the lads that have lost and the lads that have won.
Then up with the Banner, let forest winds fan her,
She has blazed over Ettrick eight ages and more;
In sport we'll attend her, in battle defend her,
With heart and with hand, like our fathers before.
What my musings are all about...
Blogging might well be the 21st century's form of journaling. As a writing teacher, I have always advised my students to keep a daily journal as a way of organizing their thoughts for future writing projects, a discipline I have unfortunately never consistently practiced myself. By blogging, I might finally be able to follow my own good advice.
The difference between journaling and blogging is that the blogger opens his or her writing to the public, something journal- writers are usually reluctant to do. I am not so reticent.
The trick for me will be to avoid cluttering the internet with more blather, something none of us need more of. If I stick to subjects I know: sports and literature, I believe I can avoid that pitfall. I can't promise that I'll not stray from time to time to comment on ancillary subjects, but I will make every attempt to be interesting and perhaps even insightful.