But What About The Sportball?

So people are upset that the NCAA sanctioned Penn State.

The darkest day in Penn State’s history was met with mostly silence on campus.

After the NCAA fined Penn State a whopping $60 million, stripped its football program of 40 scholarships and banned it from playing in a bowl game the next four seasons because of its inaction in the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal, the Nittany Lions were apparently too stunned to react to the devastating news.

Right.  Darkest Day. That’s funny.  I would have thought the darkest day would have been the first time the pedophile used his position to violate young boys. Or maybe when the leadership decided to ignore it.

No, instead your darkest day is the day the long overdue punishment for harboring a child rapist is announced.  Classy.  Way to show the victims you might have just the smallest ounce of a soul.

Good to know that it’s the innocence of children that you burn on the altar of the mighty sportball. Kneel at your big screen and take your hot wing communion.  I hope your god is merciful and worth what you choose to sacrifice.

Shoes Make The News

Via fellow shoe lover, Phlegmmy, I find that apparently you can judge people by the content of their shoe closet*. And yes, Phlegmmy is bright, cute, quirky, and delightful, much like the shoe she posted.

Well I just so happen to be wearing a favorite pair of my shoes today, so let’s have a look.

4.5 inch heel with a hidden platform.  They bring my height up to a not-so-towering 5′ 8.5″. And save me the trouble of hemming my jeans.

They are a stormy, shimmery blue. Not so Thundery as these

or these

Sigh.  Sportball meets fashion.  Or maybe collides with.

Typical June in Oklahoma. Everyone is talking about the Thunder and the Heat. Except this year, it’s not the weather. They tell me that some very tall men are meeting with some other very tall men to squeak their sneakers around and throw a ball from varying distances into a basket. I am unsure how this skill is useful in the zombie apocalypse, but since they are going to Miami, I hope they are prepared.

Strangely, it’s hard not to get swept up into the spirit just a little.  No, I still don’t plan to actually watch.  But I did actually purchase a piece of licensed merchandise so I could take part in this picture.

First row, 3rd from the left.  You probably can’t see them, but I am wearing bright yellow snakeskin stilettos in that picture. Previously seen here.

*Mine happens to be over-flowing.

Confession That Could Forever Revoke My Status As A Midwesterner

Otherwise known as Things You Already Know If You’ve Perused My Archives

or One Way Not To Win Friends and Influence Oklahomans

or possibly The Post That Alienates People I Really Do Like

I hate football.  That’s not exactly right.  It’s fine, really.  I don’t mind that it exists.  As long as it exists in a realm separate from me. I don’t even mind other people think it’s great.  There are people that I love and respect deeply that for reasons beyond my comprehension love it.  But that glazed over look you get when you start talking about ‘the game’ is my coping technique that keeps me from gouging out my eyes with the nearest blunt object.

Some of my favorite blogs even contain sport-centric posts this time of year.  Don’t you people understand that I’m trying to read these things at work?!  The catatonic stare could get me caught you know.  People might even notice the drool.  It’s very difficult to manage people from my happy place.

And then I get an email invitation to a tailgate party.  Complete with the NASCAR RV.  It starts out “If you like colder weather, football, tailgating……”  Sure!  I’m so there.  Right after I strip naked and roll in the rose bushes.  We’ve all got priorities.

And these people that I love and care about are saying, “But Jen, you’re a conservative!  You’re from the heartland.  You went to a state college.  You like guns.  You’re from a town inhabited by more cows than people.  You participated in a pig calling competiton in elementary school for crying out loud!”

Yes, it’s all true.  And yet, I’ve never tuned into the appeal of large sweaty men chasing a ball and throwing themselves on top of one another.  I’ve tried.  I went to my high school’s home games.  I watched while the corn fed farm boys threw around the pansy kids from that other school.  I was the one that sang the national anthem to start the game.  It’s just not worth freezing my butt to an aluminum bench even if the band kids snuck in beer.

If you’re one of those fans and you’ve made it this far, I applaud you.  I do not have the capacity to focus this far into a game recap.  Really, the hat I don’t wear is off to you.  And if you did, you’re probably one of those people that I love and respect and maybe even have shopped with.  And now you’re going to flame me.   I look forward to it because I know you are far more eloquent and educated than my usual flamers and assume that you will not suggest I off myself.  It should be fun.

Youthful Ingenuity

Necessity (or boredom) is the mother of invention.

The neighborhood kids had apparently gotten bored over mother’s day weekend. We had taken a trip out of town, which I will tell you about another time, and came home to this on the front of my neighbor’s house.

Having been cooped up in the car for a while, Isaac had to get in on the action.

I dubbed it ‘Ghetto Ball.’ Everyone agreed.

If the basket comes down with the ball, the point still counts.

The new sport of Ghetto Ball has its first star player.

Even Dad gets in on the action

Not me though. Sports and I don’t get along so well. No, I’ll just worry about where this ball is coming down. Probably my head.

All Things Round and Throwable

Throwable…hmm…I think I just made that word up. Eh. It’s a post about sports, the grammatical rules should be loosened.

Here’s the story. In short, the mayor of OKC wants to spend $100 million dollars to overhaul the relatively new Ford Center to hopefully entice the SuperSonics to town. I’m sure it’s not 100 million of his own dollars. Nor will it be borrowed against projected profits from the theoretical team this should attract. No, it will come from tax payers. Not ticket price payers, not fans, not corporate sponsors, but most likely tax payers. For anyone who has read my little blog before, you know I’m less than thrilled about the idea.

I have a many problems with this idea of the esteemed mayor of Oklahoma City.
1. Tax dollars should be spent on public services, not entertainment. Sports are entertainment. If you choose to spend your money watching sweaty guys throw a ball through a hoop, be my guest. I’d rather spend my money at the symphony or the theater
2. Anything tax dollars fund should have free admission for tax payers. As in, public schools and parks
3. There is no guarantee this team is even coming! The city they are currently is is suing them for crying out loud. Ah yes, that turned out to be a great investment for the city. They’ve had to turn to lawyers in protect their perceived returns.

The people of Seattle saw the light and voted not to spend money on frivolous entertainment. Rather they chose to listen to a visionary group called Citizens for More Important Things. They voted, they signed petitions, they did any number of things to stop their tax dollars from funding something no one was interested in. They decided their money was better spent in the education system rather than lining the pockets of the role models found in the ranks of professional sports. They decided it was more important that their children learn math and science than throwing a ball and scoring with the opposite sex. I can only hope that the people of Oklahoma City will prove to be so wise.

As free thinking people, we should be able to decide what kind of entertainment out hard earned money goes to support. If you like basketball, great. You have my blessing in purchasing tickets to the next game. I happen to like anime and will be spending entertainment budget on DVDs instead. I work hard. I support my share of welfare baby factories. I should not be forced to part with my money in support of an entertainment venue from which I receive no entertainment. I don’t care to pay for a single screw in a facility in which I will probably never step. I certainly will not be paying to enter said facility.

Upon the Altar of Professional Sports

Any one that knows me, knows I’m not a sports fan. You can be. That’s fine. I have no problem with people choosing whatever entertainment makes them happy. What I do have a problem with, is society raising sports up onto a ridiculous pedestal.

And so, I am incredibly impressed with Citizens for More Important things. Unfortunately, they have been so successful in dealing with their problem that it is coming to my home. Mr. Van Dyk, we have chatted before, and I am sure we will again. For anyone not aware, the Seattle Sonics (soon to be the Oklahoma City Sonics) got tired of their arena. And who can blame them? I mean it was built way back in 1994 for the bargain price of $74 million. So they want a new one. No problem! Professional basketball is multi-billion dollar industry, surely they can afford to upgrade their facilities.

Yep, there’s the problem. The new owner, Clay Bennett, threatened the city of Seattle that he would move the team unless the city built them a new arena. He thinks basketball is so very important that tax dollars should be spent to give these guys with million dollar salaries a nicer place to play. Apparently they don’t generate enough revenue from ticket sales to pay for it themselves. My response, too bad. And the people of Seattle seem to feel the same way. Chris Van Dyk and the others at Citizens for More Important Things, got the measure to a vote, and the people said ‘no.’ Lawmakers in Seattle tried to scamper around the voters to fund it anyway, and still it was stopped. Kudos to you in Seattle! David Stern, the NBA commissioner, says they won’t even get another team. Not only that, but he’s been whining about it.

“To have the speaker of the house say well, they just spend too much money on salaries anyway, so we need it for other things,” Stern said, casts aspersions on the whole league’s operations. “We get the message. Hopefully, maybe cooler heads will prevail.”

Yes, it does ‘cast aspersions’ on their operations. Professional sports are entertainment. These things are not necessary. I’ve yet to see Brad Pitt campaigning for tax dollars to build a new studio. He makes millions of dollars because people buy tickets to see him perform. Movie theaters are built by private corporations to generate income by entertaining people. I cannot see any reason why professional sports are any different.

Let’s put it another way. If the vast majority of the planet was wiped out tomorrow, and you were left with the agonizing decision to save the life of a brilliant doctor or someone very skilled at throwing a ball through a hoop, who do you save? I can promise you that 10-point shot fired in the last 5 seconds of any game is not going to set the compound fracture in your femur.

Tax dollars should be spent in a way that benefits the community. Education, hospitals, public parks etc. A profit generating machine should be paying taxes, not being paid by them. People should be left to set their own priorities in what non-necessary, entertainment they chose to invest their hard earned money. This should not be left up to lawmakers.

And so, I applaud Seattle for not laying their children across the altar of professional sports. I just hope they send some torches my way while I gather my pitchfork.