Heaven knows I'm miserable in February—thanks to Snooki (and Tiki, and ...)



Can't say I'm coming to you from a good place with this post. I'm pretty miserable, in fact, and since misery loves company, here's hoping you become infected after reading it.

It's the most depressing month of the year. There are no cool holidays to look forward to, it's been consistently in the teens and twenties for weeks now and I can't afford a vacation to Florida to get away from it all.

Plus, I just watched a Today feature about Jersey Shore and it's infuriating to think a half-dozen meatheads are raking in millions in exchange for making complete asses of themselves for their audiences. For me, the best of the show was seeing Snooki take a stiff right hand to the jaw. That was light opera, but of course, MTV opted not to air it.

It's galling—almost surreal—to watch Merideth Vieira actually interview them as if they have something insightful to contribute to the program.

Anyway, in keeping with my surly mood, I'm running down a list of some things I hate about sports and other subjects. Yeah I know there's enough hate to go around these days, but can you blame people for feeling angry? I can't.

• Wait. I'm not finished dragging NBC's sorry name through the mud. Not even close. It's unconscionable that they gave Tiki Barber a job as "correspondent." Add Jenna Bush Hager and Luke Russert to that list, too. Russert deserves the benefit of the doubt, I guess, because his old man is a broadcasting legend, but that shouldn't be the lone reason he got the job. But it's insulting to viewers to perpetuate the notion that Barber and Hager bring anything to the table. There are scores of talented, hard-working NBC-affiliated reporters who for years have worked hard for every cent either A.) reporting on absolute fluffy drivel, or B.) going on location to report in the midst of wars and natural disasters. What did they ge for their hard work and loyalty? Passed up for their deam job in favor of clowns like Barber and Hager, that's what.

• By the way, isn't it gratifying that after Barber selfishly threw his New York Giants teammates under the bus by announcing his retirement in midseason, then verbally tail-gunned at them on the way out, they went on to win the Super Bowl less than a year later? There isn't a lot in the way of justice these days, but that little chunk of it still pleases the pallet.

• I'm still angry with Jason Peters and his agent. It was gratifying to see Peters get thoroughly outclassed and emasculated by the Cowbyos' DeMarcus Ware when Philadelphia got drop-kicked out of the playoffs by Dallas. It's bad enough Peters childishly failed to honor his five-year deal with the Bills, who took a chance on him as an undrafted free agent and then converted him from a tight end to a tackle. But what's worse is that the Eagles, for all the scratch they shelled out to sign him, are probably still searching the top level of the new Texas Stadium for his size-quadruple-XL jock.

• It's tiresome sometimes being a Sabres fan, knowing that the organization would never show the stones and make a blockbuster deal like the Leafs did Sunday in acquiring Dion Phaneuf. Darcy Regier will predictably stay the course, maybe deal Nathan Paetsch for a ninth-round pick in 2020, and the rest of us can watch as Buffalo is bounced in the first round because it was lacking one or two players to help them make a serious playoff push. Are Bob Corkum or Salva Kozlov available?

• I'm seething that the NHL is consistently outdrawn on cable and national television by absolute lowbrow garbage like poker, the X Games, rodeo ... you name it. And I'm sick of hearing about how the league has to change this or that to enhance its national image. I'm through apologizing for the game. Why should it keep making up moronic new rules and reinventing itself just to appeal to the American audience? I've got news for you: the American viewing audience is much more like Snooki than Toe Blake. If Americans are more interested in watching The Hills, the 1979 Strongman Competition, or Ice Road Truckers, they're infinitely beyond the game's reach. We should take them up on the Youngman and shove them out of the van when the speedometer hits seventy-five.

• I'm already ticked that Winter Olympic Games commentators will be mindlessly droning on about Michael Phelps smoking pot three years ago, instead of focusing on his pursuit for a zillionth gold medal. Funny how so many athletes get a pass for using performance-enhancing supplements, yet in too many people's minds, Phelps will never live down sucking down a performance-detracting bongload.

• By the way, I wonder if NBC would look the other way if Tiki and Jenna took some performance-enhancing substances that could actually make their broadcasts bearable. I certainly would.

OK, that's enough disgruntlement for one day. My blood pressure's on the rise and I'm supposed to feel bad about that. Have a nice day. What the $&#@ are you lookin' at?

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