The good people at FOX—the same folks who came up with the idea of displaying the score of the game through the entire game—are now woefully behind when it comes to providing me, a big fat disgusting spoiled American, with the instant football graphics I so very much require in order to be happy.
You can see the difference between the Fox and CBS in-game graphics right away. CBS was the first network to include scores from other games on the screen at all times. Fox has followed their lead in posting scores on a running crawl at the bottom of the screen this season, but they fail to utilize it the way CBS does. When you watch a CBS game and someone scores in another game, there's a SCORE ALERT telling you which team scored and, most important, WHO scored. There's that moment of breathless anticipation in between seeing a team that has one of your fantasy players score, and seeing if your player was responsible for that score. In my case, that rarely happens (such is life when you start Ed Dickson), but when it does? MY GOD. It's like someone fed me opium in the form of a Cheeto. I'm unreasonably happy when this happens, and CBS knows that those moments are VERY CRUCIAL.
CBS also takes great pains to give you stat leaders from each game as it passes by on the crawl. They miss things on occasion, to be certain. But they do their best. And they have that brilliant graphic after every play that updates the fantasy stats of whoever was involved in the previous play. If Tom Brady hits Football Pedroiah for a touchdown, those numbers are instantly accounted for, which is extremely important if you're just tuning into a game and you don't know what kind of stats your player has amassed thus far. How can I enjoy this game without knowing the precise number of completions my QB has? What am I supposed to do, just WATCH THE FUCKING GAME? That's crazy talk. I won't have it.
Fox, on the other hand, just mails it in and runs through the scores like it's a goddamn chore. If a score changes, they don't tell you SHIT about what happened. It's as if no one scored. As if the score just changed by fucking magic. Then I have to go all the way over to my computer LIKE A FUCKING ASSHOLE. Or I have to wait for Kenan Thompson to come in with a Game Break about a scoring play that happened 20 minutes ago. What's the point of that? You think I wasn't aware of that score already, you dick? Unacceptable.
Even worse, because Fox has baseball rights, they also cram baseball scores into the crawl, which elongates the time between updated scores. I did not ask for baseball in my football. CBS doesn't have baseball rights, so you don't see that shit. On CBS, baseball doesn't exist, and what a magical trick that is. No baseball. No constant Red Sox scores. No reminders that there are still assholes out there that believe baseball is some precious incubator of American innocence. PUKE. On CBS, baseball is dead, as it should be.
And Fox doesn't update players stats from the game you're watching. Did that 10-yard completion put Aaron Rodgers over the 250-yard mark? Fox doesn't know and doesn't give a shit. They're happy to just leave you in the dark, like you're in a Bolivian prison. Then they spend halftime giving you the day's fantasy leaders, which is useless to me because none of my players is ever on the leaderboard because I SUCK. It's like insult to injury. "Hey, we don't give a shit about your team, but loogit all these other awesome players that you don't own! DEAL WITH IT. VOTE BACHMANN." Fuck you, Fox. Get your shit together. You, of all networks, should know what an attention-starved mongoloid I am. Do more score alerts. Update player stats live. If a player gets injured in another game, post a quick item on the crawl saying HOLY SHIT JAMAAL CHARLES IS DOWN AND IT LOOKS BAD. Clutter up half the screen with lots of graphics and alerts and all kinds of crazy shit that distracts from the game at hand. And replace Cleatus the Robot with the Svedka Vodka Russian lady sexbot. You know it's the right thing to do.
All games in the Jamboroo are evaluated for sheer watchability on a scale of 1 to 5 Throwgasms.
Patriots at Bills: One more thing about watching score updates on the network crawl: I get irrationally angry at games which have a score that does not change for an extended period of time. Sometimes, a game will stay at 7-3 for a solid hour and I'll lose my goddamn mind every time the score shows up. How can it POSSIBLY still be the same goddamn score? Why is nothing happening? Are they even playing football in that game, or did everyone quit and go out to eat? MAKE SOMETHING HAPPEN, DAMMIT.
I think this is part of the reason why league officials have decided to usher in the Juiced Ball era of gaudy passing stats. It's not just that people like watching teams score, and they do, it's that they also like scores to change. They like it when a game they aren't watching is active, and that shit is happening (even though a lot can happen in a low-scoring game, it just doesn't happen to be quantifiable for graphics). The Ginger Hammer wants to ensure that these games are constantly shifting and changing, and that's why Tom Brady is gonna pass for 6,000 yards this season.
Redskins at Cowboys: I went to Gawker headquarters this week, right into the belly of the bitchy beast. And at HQ, I realized I had to drop a growler in the toilet. So I go into the bathroom and sit down to do my business, and when I finished, I saw the toilet had a two-part flush. It was a button that was split in half. I had no clue why this was, so I pressed both together. The poop didn't go down. I panicked. I pressed it again and the water level rose, and now I was freaking out because I was gonna flood the toilet and have to go out and ask Nick Denton for a plunger, and he was probably gonna force me to retrieve the turd using only my mouth. So I pressed it a third time, the water came right up to the rim, paused like a golf ball on the lip of a hole, and then BOOSH, everything went down into the pipes. I felt like a millionaire. I was this close to getting fired for getting poop water all over Denton's bathroom. I would have been killed by ooga booga and merciless snark on the spot.
So I go out and I tell Craggs and Barry that I nearly broke the toilet.
ME: I just took a shit and your weird toilet almost spit instead of swallowing.
CRAGGS: Oh, shit.
ME: What the fuck is that flush all about?
BARRY: One button is for piss, the other is for shit.
BARRY: I dunno.
CRAGGS: Is that really what our toilet does?
ME: Oops. I should have washed my hands.
Then I went to get a bottle of water and the pantry nearby collapsed on one of the assistants while she was restocking it. I saw a whole champagne bottle fall on her head. I should probably avoid going to Gawker HQ in the future. I might burn it down by accident.
Texans at Saints: I took the train the other day (LOFTY), and I was waiting in line to board when this old asshole walked up and tried to insinuate himself into the line in front of me. Old people always try and pull this shit, like you aren't gonna notice them, or smell their old person oldiness when they come cutting in. Normally, I pussy out in situations like this. BUT NOT THIS TIME. I tapped that old fogey on his jacket and when he turned around, I said, "END OF THE LINE."
And he went! He didn't even put up a fight. I FELT LIKE A GOD. I can't wait for someone to cut in line in front of me again.
Packers at Bears
Falcons at Bucs: I was in Atlantic City on Tuesday night, and holy shit that is the saddest city in the world. It's like a human discard pile. Ninety percent of all slot jockeys there are sitting on Rascal scooters. I sat at the dollar blackjack table for two hours (because I'm cheap and cowardly), and the guy next to me was with his girlfriend and joked about hitting her THE ENTIRE TIME. That had a MATCH THE DEALER circle where you could place a side bet to see if one of your cards matched the one card the dealer was showing, and every time the guy's girlfriend didn't throw some chips in there and there turned out to be a match, he'd be like, "You see? Now I'm gonna hit you even HARDER!" And then other people at the table laughed uneasily, even though it was clear he was TOTALLY going to go beat her up when they got home. Never go to AC.
Jaguars at Panthers: Every time Cam Newton has an impressive week, I think his haters (and I was one of them) need to perform some kind of act of self-flagellation to make amends, because he's now become mandatory viewing for NFL fans. Cam Newton, you are free at any time to find me and beat the shit out of me. I am shit. I am nothing. "Do me a favor. Just kick my ass, okay? Kick this ass for a man, that's all. Kick my ass. Enjoy. Come on. I'm not asking, I'm telling with this. KICK MY ASS."
Giants at Eagles: Fun fact: If you go into a bookstore, any bookstore, and grab a stack of books by one author and go to the info desk and tell them you are the author of that book and that you'd like to sign all the books as a favor to the store, they'll let you autograph all the books in that stack WITHOUT CARDING YOU. Take it from a betterselling author! You could easily pass yourself off as Christopher Hitchens. Just show up LOADED.
Jets at Raiders: I was in the New York subway on Monday night and there was a poster for that shitty new Taylor Lautner movie, and someone had taken a Sharpie and drawn a little speech balloon next to Lautner's face with the words DERP! DERP! DERP! Made my week.
Broncos at Titans: Somehow I hit myself in the nuts the other day. I can't remember how. I think I was opening a jar or something and my hand slipped off and somehow found my testicles. Anyway, every year you age, the pain from a nut shot lingers at least an extra second or two. So keep that in mind when you're 60. You don't want to suffer a nut shot at 60. It could last for days.
Lions at Vikings
Ravens at Rams
Steelers at Colts: This is why I miss Peyton Manning. With Manning, this game is awesome. Without him, it's a shitheap.
I was in New York on Sunday and I had to go find a bar to watch the Vikings game, so I go walking around and there's that classic New York moment when you're looking for something you think will be on every block but fails to materialize anywhere you look. This happens to me all the time in New York. I'll go out looking for a candy store or something, assuming one will pop up, and somehow I find I'm in the one area of town that has no fucking candy shops for 20 square blocks.
So I finally find a bar after looking frantically for half an hour, and it's a Steelers bar. It's fucking packed with bodies, all of them fat and loud and horrible. It was the maw of hell. I apologize to you Pats fans for making fun of you for so long. Steelers fans are horrible. They were all waving their fucking towels and chanting HERE WE GO STEELERS when they were already up 24-0 and hugging and high-fiving. It was repulsive. I hope Big Ben gets siffy from raping someone.
Chiefs at Chargers: I know it's not Todd Haley's fault that Jamaal Charles got his knee torn in half. But doesn't it FEEL like it's his fault anyway? This never would have happened with a non-asshole in charge.
I have Thomas Jones on my fantasy team, and even though the Chiefs suck and he'll split carries with Dexter McCluster, there's a sordid thrill to be had when you draft someone who's essentially a backup, hoping the first stringer gets injured, and then the injury comes to pass. So, so gratifying. I'm a terrible human being.
49ers at Bengals: I think the NFC West might somehow be even worse this season.
Cardinals at Seahawks
Dolphins at Browns
Pregame Song That Makes Me Want To Run Through A Goddamn Brick Wall
"Spectrelight," by Mastodon. Their new album is out next week. Maybe you don't like Mastodon because you suck. But I personally support any band whose lead guitarist does ads for a local burrito bar. And not just any bar! Spencer Hall says, "It is a wonderful bar. It's the only place where I've ever seen people fucking on the couch." And really, what more could you ask of a bar than to see people fucking on the couch inside? I feel like every bar should have a dirty couple going at it in full view of the patrons. Only gay bars have this, and that seems unfair. Bars should also have two men fighting in a cage at all times.
Embarrassing iTunes Library Track I Own That Will Not Fire You Up
"Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now," by Starship. This is the theme song to Mannequin, and I spent a good portion of my adolescence picturing myself as Andrew McCarthy's character from that film. I was in desperate need of a girlfriend at the time, so I pictured myself working in a department store and stumbling upon a mannequin who turns into my secret smoking hot girlfriend when no one is looking. And then we sex it in the hammock. It was as close to having a girlfriend as I could get, and man is that sad.
This video basically echoes the plotline of the film, with lead singer Mickey Thomas coming across a Grace Slick mannequin that comes to life. Watch Thomas' reaction shot at the :50 mark when Slick comes to life. It's a masterwork of horrible acting. LET 'EM SAY WE'RE CRAZAAAYYYY. I bet Slick was high as hell on quaaludes and paint thinner for that whole decade.
Gregg Easterbrook Is A Haughty Dipshit
As you know, ESPN's resident high-culture expert and Jew-excluder loves himself some undrafted free agents and waived players. NO GLORY BOYS FOR GREGGGGGG. All first round draft picks and high-priced free agents are little more than gluttonous underachievers and thuggity thug thugs! Science tells us you can't win with them! So this week, Gregg sang the praises of the Bills for being 2-0 with little more than roster filler, and then added this odd paragraph:
Perhaps you've seen the highlight of the Dallas Cowboys' Jesse Holley making his reception against San Francisco in overtime, then starting to wave the ball before reaching the end zone and nearly losing possession. Who is Holley? An undrafted wide receiver who was waived by the BC Lions of the CFL. Undrafted Holley had the game's decisive play, while Dallas' undrafted Miles Austin caught nine passes for 143 yards and three touchdowns. On the losing side were Ted Ginn and Vernon Davis, two receivers who were high first-round draft choices.
Ted Ginn single-handedly beat the Seahawks in Week 1, while Davis has excelled as a tight end despite having Alex Smith as his QB for the better part of his career. It's not like the 49ers deserved to lose because they happen to employ these two men while the Cowboys were brave enough to throw Holley in the game when every receiver they have is injured and they had no other choice. There's NO fucking point to be made here, especially when Holley nearly LOST THE GODDAMN BALL. Hey, I thought only first-rounders and millionaires would be so repulsively carefree with the football, Gregg! Don't tell me it's not all black and white!
Suicide Picks Of The Week
Last week's picks of Detroit, the Jets, and Buffalo went 3-0 (5-1 on the year). Time to pick three potential teams for your suicide pool and something that makes you WANT to commit suicide. This week's picks? San Diego, Pittsburgh, Tennessee and street fairs. There was a street fair near where I was staying in Manhattan last weekend. These things are bullshit. "Hey, let's ruin one section of town every weekend with flea market tables and food that will give you lightning diarrhea!"
Postmortal Book Tour News
There's only current reading/signing left for The Postmortal. The last one is on Thursday, Sept. 29, at 5 p.m. at the Black Sheep Lodge in Austin, Texas. If you own a bookshop or a bar and you want to host a reading where I come and read and answer all kinds of stupid questions, send me an email and I can try and arrange it through Penguin.
Nazi Shark's Vegas Lock Of The Week
Lots of sports sites, to demonstrate the arbitrary nature of gambling, like to have animals like monkeys pick games to see if they can outwit their human counterparts. There's no reason we at Deadspin can't also get in on the fun. So we've asked National Socialist German Workers' Party member Rolf, who also happens to be a shark, to pick one game a week. Take it away, Nazi shark.
"This week, I like the Redskins getting 6 points on the road against the Cowboys. VIVA GEORGIA!"
2011 Nazi Shark Record: 1-1
Great Moments In Poop History
Reader Yosemite Sam sends in this poop story I call TURTLE AND THE HALF DOME:
So one of my goals for this year was to go to Yosemite and climb Half Dome. Our largish group of 20+ people had trained for months, we were mentally and physically prepared, and we had bought all this fancy-pants gear to make sure we wouldn't fall off the rock, etc.
I live about four hours away from Yosemite, and in order to beat the Friday afternoon traffic me and my carpool group decided to head out right after lunch. We went to In-N-Out and I ordered a Double Double with extra chopped chilies, because why not.
We reach the park at around 730pm and the only viable dining option was the dinner buffet. It was close to closing time so most of the food was ick and old, but I saw that they had a nice big pot of chili con carne so I ladled myself two big hot bowls of this.
Stomachs full of mediocre forest buffet food, we passed by the convenience store which, delightfully, sold all sorts of beer. We proceeded to load up on half a dozen beers, each. I had some sort of Double Brown Ale that had a picture of a bear on it, a couple Dead Guys, and some oatmeal stouts.
At this point it was already 10pm, and we were supposed to wake up at 3am in order to get to Half Dome and back before dark. I was pretty bloated by then, but I figured hey, I'm going to need the energy to make that 14 mile, 13 hour hike. I had the most fitful and gassy sleep ever, which was delightful to my girlfriend and two other tent occupants.
We finally head out at 430am, at which this point I was feeling pretty great. Running on pure adrenaline I got about an hour out before my stomach started to growl. I figured I'd tough it out, mountain man style, and crab hike my way to the nearest bathroom, until I realized that the nearest bathroom was about three miles away and uphill. Desperate I start scoping out my surroundings, looking for an ideal poop spot that was off the trail enough that no one would see me, but not so far that I wouldn't be able to find my way back. It was still practically pitch dark outside, with the roar of a waterfall behind me. Squirming about, I grab my friend and ask him, "DID YOU BRING THE TP?"
"No, but I have wet wip-"
"FUCK YES GIVE ME THAT NOW"
"What, you need to poop now or som-"
"SHUT UP. GIMME."
I scamper off to the side and do it like bears do in the woods, the rest of the group moving on ahead oblivious and the waterfall drowning out my relieved groaning. My friend and one other hiker were on the trail, asking if I needed help wiping my bottom and if I needed another diaper, while I swore sweet, sweet vengeance on them, once I was done evacuating my bowels. The smell, as you can probably imagine, was as pleasant as you can expect for chili that had been cooking for 12 hours. Plus, the steam really added a nice touch in the 40 degree weather.
With the sun still down it seemed like a fairly private spot, but on the way back, it turns out that it was pretty fucking exposed, and that if I had backed up another six inches I would have fallen over the cliff and into the river below. Oh, and since it had been baking in the sun for 10 hours the smell was even more delightful. I swore I saw crying children climbing up the trail that had passed that spot.
Later I read a notice that said public defecation in Yosemite carries a fine of up to $1000 dollars.
A thousand bucks? Where else are you supposed to defecate in the middle of a goddamn forest?
Fire This Asshole!
Is there anything more exciting than a coach losing his job? All year long, we'll keep track of which coaches will almost certainly get fired at year's end or sooner. And now, your potential 2011 chopping block:
• Tom Coughlin
• Tony Sparano
• Jim Caldwell
• Pete Carroll
• Jack Del Rio
• Todd Haley
• Steve Spagnuolo
• Ken Whisenhunt
• Hue Jackson
• Andy Reid
The Raiders coach, regardless of record, should always be on this list. I should know better. Reader Josh also demanded adding Reid to the list right away after he botched that interception challenge Sunday night: "He picked his fromer O-Line coordinator as D coordinator. He is loaded with talent yet the team still has gaping holes. He has to be on the list!" Indeed he does.
Fantasy Player That Deserves To Die A Slow, Painful Death
Brandon Lloyd. I checked updates all Sunday long just to make sure this asshole could play and all indicators pointed to him doing just that. "Lloyd practiced Friday! Lloyd is warming up! Looks like Lloyd is ready to go!" So I plug him in and then he gets FUCKING DEACTIVATED. FUCK YOU, BRONCOS. You can't just pull the rug out from under me like that. You dickhead teams that play in the late games and Monday night games should be forced to announce your active roster at 1PM on Sunday. I don't care if your man's leg snaps in half during warmups. You said he plays? HE PLAYS OR YOU DIE.
Gametime Snack Of The Week
Cookie Monster cupcakes, submitted by reader Steven. NOM NOM NOM.
Gametime Cheap Beer Of The Week
Chang! Reader Patrick sends in this beer from the sex slave paradise of Thailand:
I was wondering through my local Liquor store, which is pretty high-class establishment. They have frequent wine tastings, and will happily open up a bottle of wine so you can taste before you buy. Manufacture's reps frequently display their products, and let you taste them. I turned a corner and saw a gorgeous Thai girl, about 25, dressed in a Britney Spears "Oops, I Did It Again" school girl outfit, complete with the short plaid skirt, belly shirt, sheer white knee socks, and black hooker heels. Turns out she is a manufacturer's rep for Chang Beer, and she is pouring samples right there in the store... Some key facts about Chang....
• Number 1 selling beer in Thailand
• "Chang" is Thai for "elephant"
• Made with rice
• About 7% alcohol
Amazingly, it was a very, very tasty brew.. I bought a 6 pack, and really enjoyed it. The girl shot me down like a Reenactment of Pearl Harbor...
THASS RAYCESS! I do like the elephant on the can. For some reason, I feel like that would be more appropriate for an Indian beer. Mmmm curry and beer. Mmmmm curry and beer and shitting for three straight hours. I MUST HAVE IT.
By the way, never talk to a hot girl walking around as a beer or liquor company rep. They're barely human.
Robert Evans' MVP Watch!
Time to start thinking about who the leaders are for the NFL's MVP award. So every week, legendary Hollywood producer Robert Evans will join us to give us his assessment. Take it away, Mr. Evans.
"Baby, my favorite for the NFL's MVP this year is still Tom Brady of the Patriots! He's lapping the field! Now, you all know that Oscar season has arrived, and that yours truly knows a thing or two about winning one of those precious gold men. Shiny? YOU BET! Surprisingly ineffective as a sex toy? DAMN STRAIGHT. Now, a lot of studios will put out those tacky FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION ads to get voters to pick their movie, but Evans knows you don't win gold by asking. YOU GOTTA TAKE IT, BABY! That's why every Oscar voter I ever courted was given a free week's stay at Woodland any time they wished, with my staff on hand to provide food, beverages, and personal lubricant! And you know who made the biggest mess of my lovely home? JACK VALENTI. The man loved little Taiwanese boys. I came back home one week and there were golden shower stains over all the couch and origami penises all over the floor! Then I found a bubble gum wrapper with semen inside of it. I didn't even bother to ask."
Sunday Afternoon Movie Of The Week For Colts Fans
Cedar Rapids, and I can't watch Anne Heche in any movie without thinking the whole time, "That lady's crazy that lady's crazy that lady's crazy that lady's crazy that lady's crazy that lady's crazy." Even as appealing as she is in this movie, and Ed Helms is about to bang her in the pool, I was like, "Don't do it, Ed! She's gonna start talking in pretend alien languages and marry you and then sue you for jacking off to internet porn! Stay away!"
Gratuitous Simpsons Quote
"Dear Lord. If you spare this town from becoming a smoking hole in the ground, I'll try to be a better Christian. I don't know what I can do... Mm... Oh, the next time there's a canned food drive, I'll give the poor something they'd actually like, instead of old lima beans and pumpkin mix."
Enjoy the games, everyone.