Friday, February 17, 2006
I wish I were in a land of black-and-white -- not where issues and ideas were "black and white," which they never are, but a place where everything was just toned down.
Color is highly overrated.
(I blame the advertisers myself for taking away the color.)
Let it snow.
I think I let the Anons get me down.
It just makes me nuts. This is a rowdy place, by design. I like to mix it up -- and, as y'all know, I don't get all het up about staying on topic. And, I don't mind getting it across the chops sometimes in the heat of an argument, because I administer same myself sometimes.
What gets me is when someone comes along, willingly enters and stays in the ER Roadhouse, and then lambasts the place because of the kind of place it is, and me, because of the kind of me I am. I just don't get it.
I could go Haloscan. Should I? I don't like the idea of "banning" people. But shit.
Yep, my big ol' redneck feelers are hurt some. So, come on, Anons, pile on. I'm already in a dark mood.
Mean people suck.
Bearded chin up, brother. Your name is written in the Lamb's book of life, you've got a family and friends that love you. Even ol rwell-dictionary-wieldin' righty-right Nick ...
Haloscan is funny. One can indeed censor with it, but as Mr. Maness recently found out with something I said, the main reason not to censor is to give your opponent an opportunity to make an ass out of themselves.
(And I found out that basically calling him a chicken for not posting my comments will artificially draw him to the above "conclusion", but that's a whole other subject.)
Be like coming into my house, when invited to argue or debate about some -- anything -- but then saying my carpet was dirty. Or I was fat.
That's the difference.
I am going to get into a fistfight with the next holier-than-thou ass who says another mean thing about Eddie Sutton.
He's not a drunk. He's got constant debilitating pain, so bad that pain pills no longer work, and he got so desperate he "went and got a bottle" again after 16 years on the wagon, and he drove and he wrecked and he's been properly charged with aggravated something or the other.
The news coverage has been good.
But sports columnists who don't know shit about shit but think they should have an opinion about a 69-year-old HERO's pain make me want to throw up.
I will be on a panel of historians tomorrow at the local college, to review papers by a grad student and two undergrads. (Pssst. I haven't done the work yet! I've read the things, but I haven't dissected them. And Bird and her Yankee Beau and their doglet are en route, and I'll be working on that tonight instead of enjoying their company.)
And the Daytona 500 is Sunday but I'll probably be here at work because I just. can't. get. caught. up.
Man, I'd be a total whinebag if not for that.
As for Eddie, the man's illness is called alcoholism, and he has fought it much of his life. He's been in recovery 19 years or so. But recovery is only staying away from alcohol, and any alcoholic is looking for a reason to step away from recovery.
God bless him, because he's not the first nor the last to have failed to remain sober. But he made a mistake, getting behind the wheel while knowingly impaired.
Not sure I would've done any differently had I been him. I just hope I would have.
As for my blog, ain't got the motivation nor the ability right now. I average writing four stories a day for the Guymon paper and am working on freelance stuff. Blog takes third, fourth or fifth fiddle.
Oh, and then there's the ongoing love affair, which is only better. Blog takes 10th fiddle. That woman and her beautiful daughter are my priority.
Oh, and because of that, I'm interviewing for jobs closer to her hometown, so I've been outta town two of the last three weekends.
So now ya know
But while there, I asked her folks if I could have her hand in marriage. They not only seemed OK with it, they were plumb excited.
So I've been plannin' that, too. :-)
Well, if you have a weddin' I would 'preciate an invite!
I am right happy for ya!
Wait a minute: How does SHE feel about it? :-)
Eddie Sutton is a good man, and good men falter. When I was there, I went to church with the Suttons and worked part time at the convenience store Eddie frequented. I also know him to be a very caring man who gave of himself frequently.
Good men falter, and Eddie faltered. He's no less a tremendous icon in many people's eyes, and those people, who like ER get caught up in the moment, will refer to such icons as heroes. Please cut the host here some slack, TStockman. Tain't easy to see a man revered falter.
I'll keep y'all posted on my plans. Hopefully I can reveal some information in eight days, but, then, I might be a tad bit busy, if ya know what I mean.
Enquiring minds want to know. I hope you can pass up the urge to make a crack about how I must read the Enquirer.
Eddie Sutton is an icon to me personally, and to most of us who "bleed orange" -- that is, are grads and fans of Oklahoma State.
But he is a certifiable hero to hundreds of young men he has TAUGHT, as a coach, for so many years. That's Sutton's reputation, as a teacher who is a coach -- and as one who takes chances on kids others had given up on. More than a few inner-city kids have wound up on the ugly plains of north-central Oklahoma, playing basketball and learning under Eddie Sutton's tutelage. He's pretty old-fashioned and increasingly rare.
Also, I detect more than a hint of the old academic-athletic divide. Well, that don't -- bad grammar for emphasis -- really wash in this state.
As much as it pains me to say it, if OU didn't have the success of the foot ball Sooners, most people wouldn't know this state exists. And if Oklahoma State didn't have Sutton, as well as the best college wrestling team in the country most years, most Oklahomans -- those in Oklahoma City and Tulsa anyway -- wouldn't know Oklahoma State exists. (Farm types and rural people know OSU because of the extension service).
Anyway, lots more than a "sports coach" got shaken when Eddie Sutton fell. And most of us -- "most" because a downside to my beloved state is its shifting pluralities of holier-than-thou jerks -- are praying for him, his family and those under his influence, and stand and applaud him for his forthrightness and honesty. And we will not begrudge nor wish to lessen the punishment he has brought upon himself.
Besides, if you mean ragging on Cheney for the shooting, you'll have to find where I did -- other than a jab or two the day the news broke. I agree with the Anon who thought it "cute" that the Corpus Christi paper got to break the story and that the White House press, especially David Gregory, who I otherwise like, showed their collecive ass by whining about not getting the story first.
Also Anon: I do not freak out when engaged. I freak out when attacked. This was not attack. Ergo, no out-freaking. I honestly don't know how the difference is not obvious. But, hey, I'm too human sometimes.
Sutton coaches for a small Western A&M university fell off the wagon and wrecked his car. His KIA rate is rather low and the potential is too.
To equate the two for a microsecond is ....beyond....my power of wonder...
My gripe is not with the reporting of either. It's with the timing of the commentary. In Sutton's case, the columnists were kicking a man when he was down. In Cheney's case, they were kicking a man who knocled (shot) another man down. Big difference.
I'm off to see if the college is open in this ice storm.
Do you really think a coach has the same responsibilities to the public as a VP of the U.S.?
You are bleeding orange!
You were implicit in their comparability.
I know what you ment. But you transmitted something different.
Have a good day at UCO, they will enjoy your insight I think.
On another thread, I worked on a Jounalism degree and took Jounalism classes at OU in the 60s. I also once dated an Home Economist Major there as well. Now neither of those degrees or courses exist. Interesting isn't it.
Say hello to the bird and boy and bitty dog from me, and to Dr. ER as well.
Oh, wait. (Click). Now I have my imagination on: It's a shadow of me, wearin' the aforementioned hat, plyus the shadow of the Badlands Rock Monster sneakin' up on me. :-)
(I know some of y'all will find this hard to believe, but in person, in public, I am a lot more gracious, especially with students, than I am in this space, which is meant as a place for me to express all sorts of thoughts and emotions. A couple of regulars here also know that I can be a hard man, so to speak, when dealing with reporters. But I truly am kinder to students!)
An icon. Like every other relisious symbol imported into a secular context, it means "stop thinking here." Out of idleness I checked the graduation rates on the 2005 NCAA tournament schools:
O State manage 11% - boy, THAT'S a program, although it did manage to surpass a few schools that had zero graduation of their "student"-athletes, even in the vastly watered down "college" program that most members of major athletic teams get. I'm sure they get lots of character, though - anything unquantifiable and anecdotal is easy to claim. Like the benefits of snake-handling faith-healers.
And this is not a call to go out and treat academic figures as "icons" - I mean, George Lakoff or Northrop Frye or Harold Bloom - the stomach clenches. But people don't tend to do this (and when they do, it's always a delight to see them get burned, as with Paul De Man) Or ballet dancers or playwrights or
ANYONE. But people don't. Only the fans of actors and singers and athletes and politicians, the MOST brainless of activities.
Politicians ... well, they do have a place in our society, though I don't like to admit it. :-)
Without entertainment, however we see fit -- whether its crying at a sappy movie or rockin' at a concert or cheering for our favorite teams -- is an intregal part of daily lives. To dismiss it because it's brainless is asenine. News programs, newspapers, Web sites devote segments specifically to those things that entertain us.
To view a coach as an icon for only what he does on a basketball court is no more, no less a fact of life than anything else we do -- go to church, go to work, spend an hour at the dentist, etc.
And for the record, I didn't even know the University of Texas had anything special as far as academics, as I would imagine MOST Americans would admit, but I do know the Longhorns won the 2005 NCAA Division I football championship.
You have an icon for a dentist? A hero? Your boss is your hero? Your minister is your hero, with all that special knowledge of the Infinite he has? Maybe your especially speedy 7/11 clerk? Icons all.
Ah, what's the use - anyone who uses "most Americans" as a positive modification of knowledge
shows Mencken - another newspaperman - really did live in vain.
There's no question that all those activities have their place. And no quesiton that's not what they occupy.
And I'd have used bowling as another game that excites contempt, but I didn't know anyone in college who did. We'll compromise on Risk.
Although I do feel bad about ragging on you in the face of your joyful and much more important news. Congrats to you and best wishes to her.
Your elitism is showing. Pull your britches up.
If a "real university" is one totally sans sport to attract the itnerest of the uneducated and to help maintain the interest of aging alumni, then it's a university that has private benefactors and thus needs no state money -- or it's the kind of place that serves only, or mainly, to perpetuate the kind of arrogance and elitism that does nothing but contribute to yet another divide in this country.
BTW, appropo of little, I'd LOVE to see even Baylor, God love 'em, play, oh, Dartmouth in football. It'd make Baylor feel better and teach Dartmouth something about football.
Inspired by these funny links swiped from Bitch, Ph.D.:
The point remains: icon - why does it happen among the lowbrow more frequently than the high? Not that Yo-Yo Ma outranked Sonny Bono in some kind of cosmic hierarchy, but I haven't seen anyone making the leap that he'd make a damn good anything else than a cello player, or a conductor at the outside. Closest I can think of is Albert Einstein being offered the ceremonial Presidency of Israel. Which he declined.
But the idea of being united with MFA,* well, for my taste division is a good thing. Theirs, too, I think - they don't need me around socially either. Every day we see answered Rodney King's immortal, but by now surely rhetorical question: "Can't we all get along?" Umm, no, we can't. We don't. Icky.
*My Fellow Americans, the ones who believe in UFO's and carrying a credit card balance
Thanks for the congrats, but you're only reading what you want and not what was written. Please do yourself a favor and read it again before you go off blabbering at the keyboards.
I did not call my pastor nor my dentist an icon. That wasn't even the flavor of my post, so don't look down your nose at what was said when you're ignorant to what was actually being posted.
I said entertainment in whatever form is as much of our society as visiting the dentist, going to church, etc. Getting that tweeter feeling in my stomach the day I visited with George Strait is pretty damn awesome experience, and getting a football for Christmas with all the players from the Kansas City Chiefs is a wonderful experience for me.
I'm saying that dismissing things I would enjoy or ER would enjoy or whomever else would enjoy because it's brainless is showing your own ass.
I can't stand Star Trek or any other form of science fiction. I think it's a stupid waste of time, and I just don't understand why anyone would watch the show. But to those who enjoy it, it's a wonderful escape and terrific form of entertainment. If they like it, who am I to discount something that brings them joy.
You are looking down upon me because I enjoy sports. You probably look down upon me because I acted like a little school girl when I met a country singer or that I took the time at this last year's NFR to tip my hat and say an Oklahoma howdy to Reba McEntire and tell her that I know her sister, Susie, very well. But that's OK, because I'm quite happy with my life.
Maybe if you flipped on a TV every now and they, you might find more joy in your own life.
P.S. The contents of this post have been edited to remove the words "asshole," "elitist" and "sonofabitch." :-)
But to get back to the original post, I happen to like color as well as black and white. Depends on the circumstances.
Now, I am going to go eat some ice cream -- Phish Food from Ben and Jerry's.
*BTW, I may be the only Sooner alum who never attended a football game. And I don't necessarily agree with E.R. about journalism education.
I also don't like Moon Pies or cockfighting. But that's all OK. It doesn't make any dang difference to anyone.
I don't think that "icon" means "stop thinking," either in religious or pop-cultural terms. Maybe that's the fulcrum of our disagreement over their value?
In fact, in religious terms, I think an icon is more of a signal to think deeply and meditate. In pop culture, an icon can have a similar role as a marker, something to cause people to pause and assess, or reassess: "Ah, so Britney Spears is passe? Who are so many of us thinking about now? Oh, Garth Brooks is no lonber on the charts? Is country music in decline? What's next, then, as a source of social communion for the broadest (I won't call it "lowest") common denominator?
When a person who has as colorful a personality as ER looks through his black-and-white frame, you know he's troubled. And I'm hoping his writin' this thread helps him move beyond.
Teditor, grab all the lovin you can, tingle when it comes you way, smile as often as you dare.
ER, ignore your friends comments, shades of grey become you.
TS, you are among the Elite, you are one of two memembers in the whole world of the John Spruce Society.
Mark, "...watching a fawn blissfully dancing in a sun-dappled woodland glade..." you need better acid.
He said he never heard the fawn, never heard the sun, and never heard the woodland glade.
It was one of his funniest stories. You should have heard him tell it.
Not sure what that has to do with all the flowery sh(tuff) you painted with your ... uh ... (prose?) sh(tuff).
Twas almost as if you'd been readin' certain magazines or books and were inspired. But instead of writing, "My throbbing, hot, spectacular specimen was craving the warmth moistness of ..." you wrote "The deep aquamarine of the wild and wasteful ocean breaking against a pristine expanse of a white sand beach."
Is that transference?
:-) Sorry. I just couldn't resist.
In descending order: no, I think watching sports is no more lamentable that playing Microsoft solitaire, which I do.
I think the autographed football thing is a little weird, but only in the way of observing an odd fetish one doesn't share but doesn't condemn.
Yes, I would find it deeply mortifying to witness you acting like a schoolgirl over any celebrity. My face actually grew hot just imagining it. But I don't believe objecting to fangirling over a member what passes for an elite in the sports-and-entertainment US means I'm the elitist. In fact, liguistically...
Interesting, though - for none of my friends, past or present, would "elitist" figure as an insult, as it does for you and ER, who must be mediocrists or something. At first I thought it was a feature of the lamentable topography out there (being an incorrigible geographist) but remembered it was EXACTLY like New Zealand, a small town of a country, with its "tall poppy gets the chop." Maybe I need to reassess my literarist dismissal of Sinclair Lewis, because he certainly nailed the small town - or perhaps Willa Cather more exactly in this instance, in "The Sculptor's Funeral." I guess that makes me an urbanist.
As a fake sociologist, my theory on why elitism is a small-town concern: people thinking they're better than other people would be socially destructive in a comparatively small social group. The ones who feel that way move away, leaving resentment (and insecurity) among those who remain, who become more adamant in their insistence that they're every bit as good as anyone else. Except the football coach.
Oh, I plead guilt to "asshole", which is personality, but ask you to reserve judgment on "son-of-a-bith", which is character.
DrL: That honor has been what sustains me in the Wilderness.
elitist: Characteristic of or resembling a snob
But that's OK. I'm a NASCAR snob. If you don't like NASCAR, it's because you don't "get" NASCAR and are to be pitied.
I'm a newspaper snob: If you work for television "news," I think you're beneath me.
I'm a bibliophilic snob: If you don't read, a lot, then you're wasting a lot of time.
I'm some other kinds of snob, too, TStock. Maybe I meant to suggest that you were unaware that you were showin' your elitism, which is why I asked you to pull your britches up, because I thought you might've been showin' more than you meant to.
Apparently, it was NOT an accident, and yer just wearin' low-ridin' britches.
Carry on. :-)
Unsolicited advice: on a practical level, well-tempered snobbery will serve adolescents better than anti-elitism as they launch into the world. On, in terms of some of the posts, prigs outscore and outrebound the pious.
... Oh, excuse me. I fell asleep reading whatever the hell he just wrote.
The surest sign of a true score is when your opponent puts her fingers in her ears and says, "Na-nan-na-na - I can't HEAR you anymore!" :-D
Not that I'm denying that I AM tedious windbag.
TStock, do you speak Engish as a second language? I am not kidding. Maybe you're from part of the English-speaking world that is so far removed from these hereabouts that we just don't connect well.
In any case, I'm with Teditor: I have no idea what you're trying to say. Ah. Maybe that's it. Maybe you're trying too hard?
Words are just tools. I think you reach for a Crescent when you just need pliars sometimes. Or a socket set when you just need an open-end wrench.
Fog index: I give it a 17, which is never EVER necessary. An 8 or 9 always does nicely. :-)
Huh - we might reach Seinfelderie yet.
Anywya, autism is covered by the ADA so you can't discriminate against me.
Needless to say, touche. En guarde. I think I shat myself. Whichever.
Maybe words are more like bricks. In college, I used to wonder about people who tried to use them to build grand castles and artistic edifices of supposed architectural renown (English majors) -- before they learned to build something realtively simple like a planter or backyard barbecue pit (journalism majors).
But then, I've always tried to keep close to everyday reality.
My political science degree emphasis was "state and local government" rather than "international relations" or "comparative politics" or whatever. I figured I'd be covering city councils and state legislation, rather than the war in Central America -- and I was right.
And, my late history master's emphasized American Indian history and history of the West, because I live in Oklahoma, and my secondary interest is the Reformation -- all of which are close to my interests and experience.
Not, like, say, the ancient history of China and, say, the history of medicine, which, while interesting, don't seem that applicable in the everyday sense.
And now I've taken the Seinfeldian theme to a new level! Call me George Costanza, faking another career. :-)
TS is right, there are no stretch limos in small country towns, no matter how rich you may be. Tie a red ribbon around the turkey's neck and watch the other turkeys kill it.
"Got what he deserved..." is a standard small town refrain.
To live well you must live unseen.
I'll pass along a little free advice that I've given ER: Do not blog when you're drunk.
OK, so I feel as though I'm the sports defender on this thread, and that's OK. I attended my first two years of school on a football scholarship, otherwise I might not have been afforded the opportunity. From there, I received academic scholarships to complete my bachelor's degree.
I completely disagree that sports is pointless. I can make the same argument for Star Trek, Doc, but I won't go there.
To say sports is pointless, you are saying any extracurricular school activity is pointless. Debate. Speech. Drama. Quiz Bowl. Band. Etc.
Sports teaches lessons, from fundamentals to coordination to competing. Sports provides entertainment, giving millions of people joy each day. Sports allows for innovation. Gotcha on that one, didn't I, doc.
We would not have day surgeries and medical procedures -- like arthroscopic surgery -- without sports.
Look, I'm not a sports nutjob like many of my friends, but I enjoy athletics. I marvel at true athletes. I wish my own athleticism -- oh, and maybe a little height to go with my bulk -- would've allowed for me to line up against football's superstars.
I love the intracacies of football more than most other sports. I delve deeply into the X's and O's of the game and believe some people are true scientists when it comes to that aspect of it. I get excited at a well-executed cross block that allows for a streaking running back to gain an extra few yards. I love to use deception as a means of overtaking my opponent, from the play-action pass to the fake dive to the crossing pattern.
So I guess you can see why I don't agree with you, Doc. No offense, sir, but I've gotta defend things about which I hold a strong passion.
True enough, but an awfully weird formulation.
Uh ... some of the country's best orthopaedic surgeons were college athletes or have a history with sports.
Uh ... is it just hard for you to admit that jocks can have minds, too?
Not all of us are Jason White.
OK, it's Monday morning, TStock. You can get over yourself now.
Sheesh. I WILL separate you two and put you in separate corners!
Besides that Teditor, you don't defend all sports, just those you like!
I'm not anti-sports I'm a-sports.
I played baseball all of my life in school, ran track and Lettered in basketball. I also played intra-mural in College the first two years. But I also held down two jobs in High School and always had at least one in college.
I don't get drunk then blog, hell I don't get drunk.
Sports have been part of all cultures for thousands of years, they are an obvious offshoot nad training ground of the skills needed for hunting and war, just like dancing is formalized sex. I say why go for the socially acceptable substitute? Go right to the real thing.
I do think that American sports are arrogant and off target however and that is how we came to believe in such shit as an "Army Of One".
I defend all sports where athleticism comes into play. The only athletes in NASCAR are the fellers on the pit crew. :-)
Sorry, couldn't resist. You're correct. If I'm going to defend sports, I should defend NASCAR. Not sure I can. :-)
Anyway, Teditor, you made some good points about innovation and sports. Good on you.
Who knows... maybe tonight I'll open up one of the bottles of wine in the house, down it all and then blog. Hooweee boys! Watch out.