Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Crossing the Line

by a grumpy, pessimistic SonDog

News broke late tonight that San Francisco coach Mike Nolan has decided to start rookie (and #1 pick) Alex Smith at quarterback, over incumbent Tim Rattay. All I can say is that it's about freakin' time. This situation was becoming more comical than the Blue Oyster Cult, Will Ferrell, and Christopher Walken cowbell skit on SNL. Really, if you replaced Walken with Nolan, replaced Alex Smith and rookie running back Frank Gore with the Blue Oyster Cult, and replaced Ferrell with Tim Rattay and Kevan Barlow, you could adequately describe the 1-3 49ers. Picture Nolan during practice saying to Rattay and Barlow, "Baby, listen, I gotta have more cowbell." In the interim, Smith and Gore are standing around shocked, knowing that the band would be better without the cowbell. Nolan kept insisting, "Tim, don't be afraid to explore the space of the studio. I gotta have more cowbell! Tim, Kevan... look, I gotta fever, and the only prescription is more cowebell!" Fortunately, common sense reigned supreme, and Smith will start this week against Indy. Frank Gore, your time will come soon.

My fantasy football teams are killing me. I'm a collective 2-6 after three weeks. Between Jamal Lewis, Michael Clayton, Dominik Davis, Priest Holmes, Kerry Collins, Kevin Jones, and Jerry Porter, I've had more monumental busts than an "art" exhibit at the Playboy mansion.

The MLB playoffs are officially underway. From what I've seen on ESPN to this point, it looks like the only two teams that made the first round are the Yankees and Red Sox. Seriously, would ESPN and FOX executives jump from the roofs of their respective studios if these two teams both lost in the first round? Granted, this rivalry is good for the game. When fans hear Yankees/Red Sox, they know an exciting game is in store. However, if neither team advances, you can be sure there will be a plethora of stories bemoaning, "What is wrong with the game? Steroids are to blame!!" Somehow, it will all be Barry Bonds' fault.

If people don't think that the competitive imbalance is killing the game in small-markets like Pittsburgh and Kansas City, they are simply blind. It's not a coincidence that the four American League teams in the playoffs are from the four largest markets: New York, Chicago, Los Angeles (Anaheim), and Boston. In fact, there was word late tonight that the commissioner’s office requested that the Kansas City Royals go back on steroids, in order to make their team somewhat competitive.

My name is Earl is by far the best new comedy on TV. Seriously, I've heard commercials mentioning this over and over and over. I would say that it is an underrated show, but NBC will not allow that because they run an ad every three minutes to discuss its greatness. I truly enjoy Earl, but if they don't stop over-hyping the hype wagon, I may be forced to stop watching simply on principle.

If you didn't see Over There last week, try to catch a re-run on FX. If that episode doesn't make you want to rip your brain out and stomp on it from frustration, I don't know what will (don't let this mislead you; I do understand that this is a TV show and not a documentary). I don't want to go off on a rant here, but my aforementioned frustration with the war in Iraq is thicker than the plaque buildup on the lining of the arterial walls surrounding our VP's heart... okay, I'm going to sum this up quickly because if I don't, I will be up all night writing a column. No, I'm not a hippie. Yes, I support our troops. No, I don't have to unconditionally agree with a war that the current administration sells as "just." There, I said it. What makes me such an expert? Because I'm wearing them. And I just did (thank you, Randy Striegel, the cleverest guy I know).

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