Your morning roundup for Oct. 22, the day we realized Jack Daniel's prices are probably going to rise. Got any stories or photos for us? Tip your editors.
What we watched: It was Black Swan last night. Not for the first time, but the first time in a while. Still dig it immensely. Not only for the whole Kunis/Portman sexing. No. Aronofsky. It took me a while to forgive him for that whole Requiem For A Dream ass-to-ass scene. That was haunting. As haunting as Danny Boyle's whole emerging-from-the-Trainspotting-toilet scene. Or the way Joseph Merrick was treated on film and in life. Still make me think less of humanity, those do.
But with Aronofsky, The Wrestler just clawed away at my gut. Ram Jam. Ram Jam. You knew Randy was going out doing what he loved when he did that final top-turnbuckle jump. Heart-wrenching. At least it was for me. I was pissed when it didn't win Best Picture. Just like I was when Black Swan didn't. Because Black Swan, while ostensibly about ballet, was so similar in its treatment of the human condition to The Wrestler that it hits you the same way during that mirror-shard attack scene. Boom, Nina's bleeding from the soul, just like Randy did. (Almost too similarly, come to think of it.)
But the recovery to perform as best as one could possibly perform doing what they love to do? That what life's all about, man. Well, somewhat. Maybe this is what life's all about: Trying to excel while doing what you're forced to do by self and others. If you're lucky, you love the life lot you ended up leasing. That what I'm left thinking after those types of films. Visceral. Almost makes up for the degradative societal impact of a Sandlerized theatre which hasn't made a lick of sense since that imaginary penguin ran rampant throughout the mansion grounds.
Streakin' Don't Pay: "Jace M. Lankow, who is listed as an undergraduate in UA's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, was tackled by security on the field after he had stripped down to his underwear. He was led off the field in handcuffs and charged with a class 6 felony, which means he's facing a maximum of a year and a half in jail if he has no previous felony convictions." [Tucson Citizen] (H/T David C.)
Syracuse defiles what credibility the Big East had left: "The nightmare scenario unfolded for the Big East on Friday night. Syracuse shredded the only ranked league team, taking down No. 15 West Virginia 49-23 with a game plan that worked to perfection. The Orange (5-2, 1-1) dominated the line of scrimmage, mercilessly harassed Geno Smith into one mistake after another, and utilized its tight end the way an old-school football team would. The result surely shed even more respect for a league that is in desperate need of it, especially as its automatic qualifier spot hangs in the balance." [ESPN]
Pam Oliver gives Donovan McNabb a chance to publicly whine: "My goal is to lead this team to where we need to be. Obviously, it's a rough start for us. I'm truly, fully not to blame in this whole situation. It's upsetting because the Vikings traded for me. But yet, I still try to look at a wider picture. Obviously, a rookie coming in, a first-round draft pick, 1-5 (record), you have to be able to see what the kid can do. ... It is at my expense and that's the disappointing and frustrating part for me, obviously, because it's at my position. But again, I take a broader approach to it. Am I upset? Yes. Am I disappointed? Yes." [Fox Sports]
Teammates say Harrison was noticeably suffering headaches before trade physical: "Before he was sent to the Eagles as part of the voided trade that might have saved his life, Lions running back Jerome Harrison experienced headaches bad enough that he wore sunglasses to practice, several teammates said Friday. Teammates said Harrison was scheduled for surgery Friday on a tumor that was discovered when he failed his physical with the Eagles.
Your Turkish Tickle Interlude:
They respect the World Series too much to make further comment until Tuesday: "Theo Epstein officially resigned as general manager of the Red Sox late Friday night to accept the position of Cubs president of baseball operations. The announcement was made in a joint news release after some cajoling from Major League Baseball, which was upset the two teams' contentious negotiations for compensation regarding Epstein is a distraction from the World Series." [Chicago Tribune]
Fox/Univision outbids ESPN for two World Cups: "The FIFA World Cup will have two new U.S. TV partners in '18 and '22, with several sources saying that Fox and Telemundo will pick up the broadcast rights. Sources said Fox has agreed to pay $450-500M for the English-language rights to the next two events, scheduled for Russia and Qatar. NBC-owned Telemundo has agreed to pay around $600M for the Spanish-language rights, sources said." [Sports Business Daily]
Mike Ditka has gracefully entered life's Can't-Shut-Up phase: "I would kick [Carlos Tevez] right in the arse. Did he refuse to pick up his pay cheque? No, he remembered that didn't he. There's an old saying: In life you get what you tolerate. If you tolerate that kind of behaviour you're going to get it and if you don't tolerate it then you won't. You might be a good player but there are a lot of good players. I don't have sympathy but you're talking to the wrong guy. I'm not sympathetic to people like that." [MetroUK] (H/T Tomuban)
Today's Soccer Viewing Recommendations: Big games are on Sunday. Today's: Liverpool vs. Norwich City (Fox Soccer Channel, 12:30 p.m. eastern); Barcelona vs. Sevilla FC (GolTV, 4 p.m.).
Merch: Managing editor Tom Scocca and contributing editor Drew Magary have both written books. You can buy Scocca's Beijing Welcomes You: Unveiling the Capital City of the Future here, and Magary's The Postmortal here. Now do it.