Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Dear Charlie:

You know, I shoulda been a sports writer. I was tempted -- briefly -- to take the offered job as a journalist at the local paper, just to see if it might turn into sports writing someday. Unfortunately, I had applied for an editorial position (the editorial staff was full until, literally, the day after I got another job; they weren't lying, either, because I have a friend on the staff who called all excited with the news...dammit) and I would have been freelance at first. Again. I've done the freelance thing -- briefly -- and...not so much.

But, the idea lingers. Because I love certain sports writers.

I love Joe Posnanski.

No matter how bad my boys get, I can always read his articles. I may wince and groan at his insightful and even brutal roastings, but I still manage to laugh. That's some serious talent, there.

Like here:

Hey, it was OK if [the Chiefs] lost. We figured they would lose. We just didn’t need them to take the Nestea plunge into comedy.

Then, there they were on Sunday, playing three different quarterbacks, inventing a Scooby-Doo mystery about dizzy spells, allowing 300 yards rushing to a Raiders team that could not throw and, it goes without saying, losing for the 11th consecutive time. Oakland crushed the Chiefs 23-8. The only thing working Sunday was the concession stand.

Ouch. But I still snickered.

Or on Page 2 of the same article:

"We couldn’t put Damon [Huard] back in," Edwards said. "That wouldn’t have been fair to him."

Instead, they left Thigpen out there to roast. You know how physicists figured that if Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt had gone all-out at the Olympics, he could have run the 100 meters in an astonishing 9.55 seconds? Well, those same physicists figured that if the Oakland defenders could catch, Tyler Thigpen would have thrown eight interceptions Sunday.

Now that is a comparison for the ages, folks. That is sports writing at its finest. Throw in a Shakespeare quote and some Nietzsche, and you got yourself a dissertation on The Year of Blight in Kansas City.

Okay, maybe that's a little harsh. My boys didn't deserve that rougher side of my tongue. I apologize.

See, I'm not a fair weather fan. I've been a Chiefs fan for as long as I can remember. I briefly flirted with the Cowboys in an abortive attempt to break free from the rampant Chiefs fandom in my house, but that flirtation, like all youthful rebellion, fell utterly flat when I realized I couldn't bear the Cowboys enough to even outlast a season. And this was back when they were good. Oi.

So I've seen them through the highs and lows. I'm not turning my back on them now. I love my boys. And I will love them again. But this year is one for the quotes, not for the thrills.

As I said after the Patriots game the week before last, I'm not as hopeless for this season as I was during the preseason. If they'll just settle that troublesome quarterback position -- and stop living that junior high credo that everybody on the bench has to play or it isn't fair, which is the only reason I could see for throwing poor #10 into the mix -- they have a real chance to develop some talented players for future seasons.

But that quarterback thing has to stop. They're killing me. I want so badly to root for my boys, but darn if Herm Edwards and Carl Peterson aren't making it just the teensiest bit difficult for me. There's good in my Chiefs. There really is.

But...there's also this:

[Tyler Thigpen] holds every passing record they have at Coastal Carolina, in part because the school did not have a football team before he got there. He was drafted in the final round by Minnesota last year and released before the season began. Well, it stands to reason — after all, the Vikings are overburdened with too many good quarterbacks.

Is it bad that I find that so damn amusing?


At 9:11 AM, Blogger writtenwyrdd said...

You know, I read something like this written by someone who has a passion for the topic and I am (almost) interested. Generally I am bored to tears with sports anything except the Olympics and certain winter sports--unless I am actually at the game itself.

Writing freelance would take incredible discipline, which I lack. There's a reason I am not in business for myself!


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