By: T.R. Slyder, TRSlyder@yahoo.com
I had a few ideas for a blog post, but they were more like blurbs, and I didn't want to waste my time or yours by stretching them into a regular-length post. So I'll just combine them.
1) In the wake of the Mumbai terrorism it reminded me that I miss the name "Bombay". I should probably research why the name change occurred, and I probably will later, but I don't feel like it right now. I always thought that Bombay was a cool sounding name.
2) Does anyone else find themselves domestically multi-tasking more now than they did 5 years ago? For instance, as I type this I have my television on. I'm "watching" the Tennessee vs. Georgetown basketball game. I don't know what the score is, but it's on anyway. I guess if I get bored typing I look up to see the score, or if I hear announcers screaming then I look up. But really, it's a waste of electricity. After the game is over if someone asks me if I saw the game I'd have to confess, that I didn't really watch it. I couldn't name one thing that happened during the game, so there really isn't a point. Plus it's probably affecting my writing to some extent.
I am all for legitimate multi-tasking like brusing my teeth in the shower, running errands while dinner is in the oven, talking on the phone while I do dishes, or reading on an airplane (by airplane I mean "toilet"). Those kill two birds with one stone, but it seems like lately I think that I am multi-tasking, when all I'm actually doing is needlessly distracting myself.
I find myself doing that kinda thing more and more, though. I'll read with the TV on, then realize I didn't retain what I read very well. Or I'll talk on the phone while reading news on the internet. What I've noticed the result has been then I just half-assedly read stuff. While, I'm reading a news article I'm thinking "Ok, that headline has my attention. I'll read the article. Ok, the first two sentence will be a lame intro/attention grabber, so I can skip to the second or third sentence. Ok, basically, this article is about our recession, so I'll just skim for numbers or quotation marks to see what an expert has to say. Ok, I haven't found any yet, what the hell? Oh man there aren't any! Oh Jesus, now I have to read the entire first two paragraphs? Oh well, I guess I'll sack up and do it. Ok, I'll just read them regularly I guess." That entire process is obviously pathetic as hell, and even like two years ago I would have just started reading the article like an ordinary human does. I think all the multi-tasking reduced my attention span to like 25 seconds.
But it seems like the whole world is geared toward that now. CNN and ESPN2 have the scrolling ticker thingy on the bottom of the screen. Magazines have multiple little snippets on the first 20 pages or so, none of them containg more than two paragraphs, websites seem to have increasingly smaller (I guess that's called "decreasing") articles, SportsCenter shows just clips of games, the Daily Show watches political speeches for you then gives you the highlights of what you missed, etc. Oh, and txt msgs, are maybe the biggest single contributer. In the 1880's people used to write actual letters to other people and would write rough drafts for them, and crank out an interesting letter that they had revised as though they were the editor of the Wall Street Journal. Nowadays people just post a sentence to Twitter like "Jessica Simpson has big boobiezz".
Ok, that article exceeded my attention span. I'm ready for a new, two minute blurb! How about you?
3) Have you ever heard the word "Spangled" other than "the Star-spangled Banner"? I'm gonna try use that word once in a while and see how I like it. They Rnt Gr8 4 ur attn span.
According to Merriam-Webster.com
- Middle English spangel, diminutive of spang shiny ornament, probably from Middle Dutch spange; akin to Old English spang buckle, Middle Dutch spannen to stretch
- 15th century
2 : a small glittering object or particle
I assumed it meant, like "dotted", as in "the floor was spangled with dirt" or something. Apparently it means something akin to "shimmer". Does "star-spangled banner" even make sense then? A banner with little shiny objects on it? So did Francis Scott Key mean that he was so happy to see that "the flag was still there" that the stars appeared to shine or glow? I guess that must have been what he meant. Our country and flag are cool, but our national anthem is pretty weak. Compared to other countries, our national anthem doesn't spangle at all. (that was awkward, no?).
The last two are sports related.
4) Who the hell would Notre Dame hire if they fire Charlie Weis. I'm not saying he isn't fireable or defending his performance, but the Notre Dame job isn't as glamorous as it once was. Remember how difficult it was for ND to find Weis in the first place? They first offered the job to Urban Meyer, and everyone assumed he would accept it, only he turned it down to coach at Florida. That certainly appears to have been the right move. I am positive he doesn't regret that decision. Then Notre Dame hired that one no-name dude who lied on his resume, so he was canned. Then Notre Dame was in a PR nightmare and suddenly desperate for a head coach. Any head coach. Then Charlie Weis seeminly fell from the sky- a proven NFL offensive co-ordinator who was a Notre Dame grad and had a crew-cut to boot. Perfect. It looked like the perfect fit for both sides, and the rest would be (good) history.
So if the Notre Dame job was un-glamorous enough for them to have to scramble to find a head coach, did Weis's shitting of the bed do anything to add glamour to the position? You'd have to argue that he cheapened the product. Notre Dame is not in a power-conference (or any conference), doesn't have any obvious local, geographical talent pool (like Florida, Texas or California schools have) and has very high academic standards which eliminate dozens of talented athletes every year. In short, they want to be a program like Duke basketball, but lately they're program has looked more like an Ivy League program: quality men, that just happen suck at football.
While the Fire Weis talk has been warranted, what alternative do they really have?
5) I have had more than enough of ex-Dallas Cowboy football analysts/announcers. While watching the Cowboys game on Thanksgiving and realizing that Troy Aikman is less partial to the Cowboys than a porn star is to his own genitals, I'd had enough. That's not the entire problem though. Moose Johnson, Emmitt Smith, Deion Sanders and Michael Irvin are all the same- only they don't have much (or any) analystic or journalistic talent. I'm all for having ex-players in the booth and behind the desk for pre- and post- game shows, but we don't need four from the same team. Especially, from a team that was way over-exposed in the media while they were together.
Solution? Demote Aikman from Fox's A-team, fire Moose and Emmit because they blow, and let the not-half-bad Irvin keep his gig. No one cares about Deion since he's on the NFL Network which I think 11 people actually get.