Let me get cynical on sports & politics
October 19, 2011 - Let's begin with Merriam Webster's definition of cynic: (I'd rather refer to Funk & Wagnall's encyclopedia, but they became mostly referred to by comedians like Johnny Carson, as, "Look it up in your Funk & Wagnalls.")
Cynic: one who believes that human conduct is motivated wholly by self interest.
That's me, baby
Because I never got into soaps and cartoons, like The Simpsons, I've become nearly addicted to particular sports: baseball and football. I like comedy, but there are no Red Skelton-clean comedians that I know of.
Televised football games usually start with the introduction of four dozen sponsors, announcers, coaches and players.
I think names and backgrounds of referees and umpires should also be included. It would make it easier for us to understand their play calling.
After all, they are considered people, and people, all people, have backgrounds that have implanted ideas, leanings, likes, dislikes, prejudices and financials that could well be so implanted as to make calls seem right to them, and wrong to we normals.
The strike zone in baseball is often just a guesstimate. Not to me, but to them.
A touchdown in football has been reinterpreted to allow the ball carrier to go out of bounds with feet and body on the 10-yard line, yet hold the ball over the goal line.
Watch a referee place a football after a stoppage in play. They seldom put it on a half-yard line. Almost always the ball goes on a line visible to should-have retired, overweight people in stripes.
Football recruiters now include "reach" as well as speed and agility when studying films. I believe they have long since given up on considering Mensa capable athletes.
Also, I never root for any number "1." Word has been leaked to the press many times about an athlete picking a college or university after being promised he would have the No. 1 shirt.
My definition of "cynic" at the start of this Jottings, also applies to the egocentric, too lauded, swell-headed who have also been promised starting lineup positions for life, and friendly, paid for parole officers.
Did you say the game started at 7:00 tonight, Channel 2?
I'm ready! Go team!
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If you read this far in this Jottings, I'm sure you realize I'm as normal as the next guy. And, I am.
I don't like pullover shirts, like so many golf shirts. I wear a turtle neck for snowmobiling, but avoid sweaters. I wish they made button-up undershirts. Don't you?
And, I don't allow my dress shirts to hang on wire hangers. After I wash and iron my shirts they get wood hangers, like they deserve.
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• I don't know why this time of year is called the scary, Halloween season. Must be for the tikes, because we adults have long scary, seasons when congress is in session.
• All Consumers Energy Company employees, at all levels, should be required to call their company phone, 1-800-477-5050, and ask to talk to someone. It's a great way to build your overtime hours and gain a further understanding of why we consumers of your gas have had it up to here with your monopoly privileged utility.
• Come back next week and read how I've mellowed.
Jim Sherman, Sr. is president of Sherman Publications, Inc. He has penned "Jim's Jottings" since 1955.