Archive for the ‘Olympics’ Category

Nothing brings out the manlove like winning the Super Bowl.  Photo from Getty Images.

Nothing brings out the manlove like winning the Super Bowl. Photo from Getty Images.

Now that the NFL season is officially over, I guess I have to turn my attention to other sports.  I’ll be honest with you, other sports do not entrance me the way football does, but I do pay attention to headlines and major happenings for the most part.  So I’ve decided to do a weekly Notes Blog wherein I discuss the major sports happenings of the week.  It will be football, baseball, tennis, hockey, basketball, whatever strikes my fancy.  Without further ado, let’s hit it!

  • Today is national signing day for the college recruits.  Well, most of them, for some reason some of them don’t commit today and commit several weeks from now.  So why have a deadline?  I really don’t get that.  Anyway, today us college football lovers get excited about all of these random people we never heard of before and get depressed over missing out on other top recruits.  I hope on espn.com and seminoles.com to find out what my Noles are doing and where they’re rated and who we’ve got and who we might get.  I get rather obsessive about it and refresh every half hour or so.  And today I ask myself why?  I don’t know these kids.  I don’t know anything about them other than somebody slammed 5 stars next to this guy and only 3 next to that guy.  Doesn’t really mean they’ll kick butt on the field, I’ve seen many of the top recruits flame out over the years.  But still, I care, and I get excited!  Go Noles!  We did land the top DT in the nation apparently, which pleases me, as well as high rated cornerbacks and safeties and a kicker.  All positions of major need so I’m content.  So, hope you’re having a blast college football gurus, may your school land those top recruits and may everybody decommit from USC and UF just because I hate them.
  • So everybody’s all up in arms about this Michael Phelps marijuana smoking picture.  Some of the morons in the media blasted him for letting his picture get taken.  Hello, I don’t believe he knew it was.  Also, he is a 23 year old and he will do the occasional stupid thing.  That’s what happens in the early 20’s.  He admitted it, which was pretty stand up of him, because I saw the picture and it really didn’t even look that much like him.  I’d have gone with the lie personally, but then I happen to be an accomplished and awesome liar.  Now apparently the police are thinking of charging him.  Can you charge someone for a picture?  I mean, you may as well hit myspace right now and get your warrants ready.  What a bunch of bull.  Leave him alone, lesson learned, moving on, get in the pool and win some more gold medals in 4 years.  Thanks, buh bye.
  • Apparently indictment records against Bonds were released this week and lo and behold, he tested positive for steroids.  This is GROUND BREAKING NEWS.  I was not aware of this information!!!!  I mean, I know he doubled his size right in front of our very eyes a couple years ago, but I assumed it was natural.  He was probably hitting Taco Bell and McDonald’s every night.  I can grow to twice my size very easily when I do that and I’m not on the roids!  Truly, I am sick of this story.  Get a trial going or don’t, I really don’t care anymore.  I am tired of Barroid and want him gone.  It doesn’t matter if he goes to jail or just goes home and counts his money and throws baseballs at passers by from his bedroom window.  Just go away!
  • Roger Clemens, the same goes to you.  We know you did roids, you know you did roids, why are we all still talking about it?  Government, put up or shut up.  We’ll see if the vengeful media punishes Roger and Barry or if they usher them into the hall of fame with their not very valid we don’t know when he used argument.  If you’re going to keep Big Mac and Palmiero and others out, you keep those two out too.  Period.
  • Kobe broke the scoring record at Madison Square Gardens the other night, got 61 there I guess.  That’s cool I suppose, not as cool as the 81 he got a couple of years ago.  It appears that nobody will ever beat Wilt’s record which is a shame, I live to watch records fall and I would actually tune in to a basketball game if there’s a possible scoring record on the line.
  • What was going on in Pittsburgh on Tuesday?  I’ve seen some clips of the Super Bowl celebration party and that was the quietest damn crowd I’ve ever seen.  What, #6 is just passe now?  Ramp up the celebration, peeps!  Bring the energy, it’s cold out there so you should be yelling and whooping it up!  Perhaps William Gay’s retarded rap song stunned them all into silence.  I could understand that.  The record execs will not be knocking down your door Willie.
  • Manny Ramirez remains unsigned and the Dodgers are getting a little bit tired of him turning down their rather large contract offers.  Albert Pujols of my St. Louis Cardinals is pushing for my spendthrift owners to get off their butts and bring him there.  At first I was horrified by this idea but then I thought of the beauty of having and Albert/Manny combo at 3/4 and I decided I could suck it up and deal with the Manny drama.  Do it!  Do it now, Cards!  It’s not like you’ve bothered to do anything to improve the team this off season, so there should be some cash lying around for Manny.  Albert with keep him reigned in, I have faith in that!
  • I guess there was some epic tennis this past weekend.  Can’t say that I watched, but Federer/Nadal round 2938293 or whatever it was was a long battle that drained them both.  Nadal came out the victor and Federer had a heartfelt teary speech.  Nadal came back with his own honoring Federer.  Awesome display of sportsmanship.  Serena won again as well, go Williams Sisters.  I don’t follow the sport but I do follow them and I love that she’s still winning at an age when most tennis chicks are retiring.
  • The Cardinals offensive coordinator is interviewing for the KC job.  He and Pioli have a history together so that’s a pretty good possibility.  If he goes that will probably be good for the Cards when it comes to retaining Boldin, but who can say what it means for Warner?  Haley’s done a great job with that offense and deserves another head coaching job.
  • I didn’t do a Super Bowl commentary, by the time I thought about it I was immersed in Heroes blogging and Days drama and Idol in Hollywood, so the opportunity slipped past me.  But I will say that was the best Super Bowl I’ve ever seen.  I know it was quiet in the 3rd quarter but since I knew that AZ could score quickly I remained riveted.  Worked out well all in all.  My heart was broken for the Cards, that had to have been a major gut punch to lose; but the football fan in me was thrilled with the last minute TD by Santonio Holmes.  Gorgeous play, fantastic game.
  • There should have been a longer review of the Warner fumble at the end of the game.  I hate to have a game that good end somewhat questionably.  No matter where you fell on was it or wasn’t it, you have to agree it should have gotten more than cursory glance in the booth.  I would have loved to see Warner get a shot at the end zone with Fitz and Boldin waiting.

So those are the big things on my mind this week.  I hope you liked this format, I’ll be happy to stick with it if people like it.  If it seems like I’m just talking to myself I’ll call it quits, because I talk to myself all the time and I could save myself some future carpal tunnel treatment if ya’ll don’t like it.  Let me know!

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  • I think I’m officially Olympiced out.  Even though I swore once swimming and gymnastics were over that I would be able to get some sleep again, well, it didn’t happen.  Because we had diving and track and field and volleyball…I could go on but you get the point.
  • A true testament to my Olympic obsession?  The fact that I woke up at 4 AM this morning and thought, hey the basketball team is playing, should be over about now, let me flip it on and see how we’re doing.  So I did and we were only up by 7 and there were 4 minutes left so I said, I’ll stay up.  Well, 4 minutes in basketball time can take about 20 minutes to play out with all the fouls and such, so I stayed up.  Then I watched them celebrate.  Then I watched them get their medals.  Then it was 5 AM and time to go back to bed.  Ridiculous.
  • What makes that more ridiculous?  I don’t even like basketball.  I’m happy that Team USA came through and I’m even happier that they were good sports throughout the Olympics and they supported their fellow Americans this time around, but I still don’t care for basketball.  I watched the women’s team win their gold too.  I have a sickness I tell you.
  • Weighing in, briefly, on the Chinese gymnasts…I believe they are younger than 16.  Not all, but some, and that’s enough to take all their medals away.  I like how the Chinese government is producing all this paperwork proving their ages.  Like that can’t be faked, particularly by the government themselves?  Gotta love it.
  • I’ve seen the argument that even if they’re younger, they’re still better and deserved to win.  Well no…a girl’s body pre-puberty is far different than after, so the younger you are, the more flexible you are.  Not to mention having a few less years of wear and injury on the body.  Sorry, not buying that one.
  • Big congrats to the men’s volleyball team, winning gold for their coach as he works through his family tragedy.  That had to mean a lot to him.
  • You know, it was a really great year for the American teams at the Olympics.  Men’s and women’s basketball taking gold medals, men’s volleyball gold, women’s silver, men and women water polo both silver, women’s gymnastics silver, men’s bronze, the swimming teams of course and even track and field (despite the 4×100 relay snafus).  Oh and the two golds in beach volleyball.  Very impressive showing for team USA.
  • While I enjoyed the Olympics far too much, I recommend NBC work on some new announcers and sideline reporters.  The only announcer I enjoyed was Ato Boldin who did track and field.  He actually explained things, broke down races, and had genuine excitement over every single race.  And he wasn’t a homer, he rooted for everybody.  He could teach the gymnastics announcers a thing or two.  I also hated the diving announcer woman.  She came off as quite the bitch.  I think she broke things down well, but she was so critical it annoyed me.  Like she wanted to be a judge instead of an announcer.  Hated her.
  • In non-Olympics news, my Super Bowl pick of the Patriots is looking a little more dire day by day.  They got their butts kicked again, yes, preseason game and Brady’s not playing, but god help them if my pretty Tom does not make it through the season.  Their backup QB situation is abysmal.
  • Apparently Shawn Merriman hurt his PCL and MCL ligaments in his knee and he’s still considering playing.  Be smart and get the surgery, one year is not worth risking your entire career over.
  • Anquan Boldin (Seminole!) wants out of Arizona and my Bucs could use him bigtime this year.  AZ won’t trade him, but a girl can dream can’t she?  He’d fit in well here.  Sigh.
  • Stop the presses, Brett Favre and the Jets won a preseason game.  Pencil them in for the big game.  HA!  Why is he on the cover of Madden anyway?  When they chose the cover he was “retired” right?  John Madden is a so Favre’s bitch.
  • I only saw part of the Bucs game last night, but Jeff Garcia needs to get practicing.  He had some abysmal throws and 2 terrible interceptions.  Griese threw a terrible ball too that fortunately got dropped.  However, the offense is moving the ball pretty well so I take heart in that.
  • My Cardinals are now 8 games behind the Cubs.  I think we can call it for the year.  Sigh.  I really really hate the Cubs.
  • Albert Pujols should be NL MVP.  He should generally always be MVP, but this year he really should.  Keeping this team in contention for so long says a lot about how valuable he is.
  • I’ll close with a sad goodbye to Gene Upshaw.  He had his faults but he did a lot for the NFL players in his tenure as their president.  He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer only days before he died, so hopefully he wasn’t ill for long.  Condolences to his family.

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I spent the better part of my much needed sleep time last night thinking about what I would say in todays blog on Michael Phelps and the history we witnessed last night.  So many thoughts were flying through my head that I don’t know if I can capture them all, but I’ll give it my best shot.  The fact that I was actually having this reaction over an Olympic athlete is pretty unprecedented.  I love the Olympics, watch them every time they’re on and root hard for the Americans and some of the other athletes whose personal stories touch me.  But the honest truth is, nothing has enraptured me the way watching Phelps recreate history has.

I am fortunate enough to have been able to see all of my favorite teams win championships in my lifetime.  The Noles in 93 and 99, the Bucs in 2002 and the Cardinals in 2006.  I became a sports fan when I was a kid, first with the California Angels and then when we moved to St. Louis in 1987, the Cards captured and kept my heart.  They’ve been a pretty good team that entire time.

In 1993, I began attending Florida State and fell in love with football.  And I mean it when I say love.  Football is probably my biggest passion and has been for years.  And I was fortunate enough to go to a school that actually won.  We won the championship my freshman year and dominated the 90’s like no other team.  It was a beautiful thing and I got very spoiled (and why I have a hard time dealing with the Noles of now, which you will no doubt see in blogs coming up all too soon as football season fast approaches).

As for pro football, I didn’t start paying attention until 1997.  I fell for Warrick Dunn at FSU and said whatever team took him would be the team I supported.  I already sort of rooted for the Bucs (while not watching them) because they had drafted my other fave Nole, Derrick Brooks, in 1995, so when they got Dunn they won my heart.  I didn’t have to suffer through the days of the terrible Bucs or the creamsickle colored jerseys (that might have been a deal breaker).  I got the Dungy coached Bucs in all their defensive beauty and then the Gruden coached Bucs that won the Super Bowl in 2002.  So yeah, I’ve been pretty spoiled there too.  I also started rooting for the Patriots in 2000 when they went against the Rams, who I felt got into the Super Bowl on a bad call (the Bert Emmanuel catch) and who taunted my Bucs on the sidelines after they won (still haven’t forgotten you Brian Jenkins, jackass).  So, obviously, supporting the Pats has been a lot of fun up til February, but who can complain with 3 out of 4?

You may wonder why I felt the need to take you through the various championships of the teams I love.  Well, that’s very simple actually.  Because those championship years meant a lot to me.  I have a binder filled with articles I searched out after the Bucs won the Super Bowl.  I did the same thing for the Cardinals.  I wasn’t equipped to do it with the Noles but I have their commemorative SI books and some t-shirts and other paraphernalia.  I bought the the Cards World Series DVD and the Bucs one as well and sometime in the near future I will search out the Nole ones, I’m sure they’re out there.

And last night darned if I didn’t rush to NBC to buy the Phelps DVD.  I just wanted to be able to go back and watch that piece of history whenever I got the urge.  To see the races without my heart in my throat and the urge to cover my eyes and pace around the room.  To relive the joy and excitement of his family in the stands, his teammates, his coach and all the viewers watching him.  It sounds dorky probably but his winning 8 Olympics golds touched me in the same way as watching teams I’ve loved for years win their ultimate championships.  And heck, what he did was way harder.  Hee, in rereading what I just wrote, I bet you anything that my heart will still be in my throat on rewatch, because I still get just that excited when I watch the Bucs and Cards championship DVD’s.  I’m a freak, I admit it.

For the better part of a week, Michael Phelps mania has captured my and countless others attention.  I have sacrificed sleep in order to see just about every race (I missed the first relay where Lezak came from behind and won, sigh) and I would do it all over again.  I’m almost sorry that the swimming is over, even though I’m exhausted, I will miss it.  Phelps enters a whole new stratosphere after these games and I’m already looking forward to seeing what he can do in 4 years.  I know, he won’t be going for 8 golds but darned if he couldn’t add at least a few more right?  He’ll be 27, Piersol I believe is 28 and he got several this year, so why not?  I guess this Olympics has made me believe he can do just about anything he set his mind to.

I’d like to say even though the NBC hype machine was turned up about 1000 times too high, at least Phelps lived up to the billing.  So many athletes fail when the spotlight shines on them the brightest (lookin at you Bode Miller!) that it’s great to see one come through and do the nearly impossible.  I know Michael overshadowed a lot of his fellow swimmers but Lezak, Hanson and Piersol were all awesome both during the race and after.  I loved the team camaraderie from all 4 men and I’m thrilled for them all.

I’m going to enjoy this last week of Olympics but I’m really going to miss seeing Michael Phelps light up my screen every night.  Maybe I’ll actually get back to a normal sleep pattern soon!  Who am I kidding, women’s individual gymnastics is tonight!  I’m in for the long haul.

Anyway, time to wrap this up.  Thanks Michael Phelps for including the world in your special moments.  It was a treat, as are you.  8 for 8…who’d a thunk it?

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Phelps Phanatic!

I just don’t have a lot of words here, but I’m going to share my complete and utter joy from watching Michael Phelps win his 7th gold medal of these Olympic games.  He was behind for the entire race and then all of a sudden he touched the wall before that Cavic dolt, who actually had the balls to call Phelps out before the race.  Suck on your silver dude!

I mentioned in my previous blog that I was transfixed by the Olympics and that was true, but my primary focus has been Michael Phelps.  I can’t help it.  I love to see history made.  I adore it.  I was rooting for 19-0 last year for the Pats and my heart is still crushed by it.  I’m kind glad the Favre hoopla came up because otherwise we’d be hearing about the 18-1 finish for the Pats.  Sigh.

That was off topic.  Anyway, I’m euphoric that Phelps tied Mark Spitz’ record and tomorrow night he will go for the all time at 8-8.  And we’re heavily favored in that relay, so I’m feeling pretty good and excited.  I’ll do another blog about that and some more Olympic stuff soon, but meantime I just had to say way to go to Michael.  He’s awesome and I feel honored that I get to watch him.  He’s definitely making it worth me staying up far too late on work nights.  I’m glad his part is almost over, though I won’t know what to do with myself without the Olympics keeping me occupied.  Oh yeah, football is coming. hehe I love this time of year!

Go Phelps, Go USA, you all rock!

ETA: Apparently Serbia and sore loser Cavic are filing a protest over the results.  How do you protest a result?  There aren’t judges giving scores like in gymnastics.  It’s not subjective.  Michael touched an electronic touchpad first.  You lost, by 1/100th of a second, Cavic, but you lost.  Suck it up and be a man.  Too bad you talked trash before the race and then couldn’t pull it off.  Why don’t you talk to that French guy Bernard about it…he’ll tell you that challenging the best swimmer in the games is probably not your best bet.  Suck it up, baby, suck it up!  Guess he has to, cause I’m watching Michael on the podium with his gold!  Phelps rocks!

I must say I enjoyed watching silver loser shake Michael’s hand, like his protest doesn’t exist.  He might be my most hated athlete at the games now, what fun, an enemy!  More breaking news, they won’t accept the protest, the cameras and touchpad are right.  Yay!

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Sports Shorts

I’ve been told that I’m woefully negligent on the sports coverage lately, so I’m going to check in with sports shorts up until the football season starts, when of course I’ll be willing to write epic poems of love to the sport that has my heart.  In the meantime, here’s where I am on various topics not Favre related:

  • I am completely caught up in the Olympics.  I’ve been watching like crazy and staying up far too late at night trying to catch Phelps’ quest for gold and the gymnastics.  Why are all the things I want to watch on so damn late?
  • Synchronized diving?  Who came up with this sport and why?  And why have I watched both the men and the women’s events?  What is wrong with me?
  • I’ll admit this as well, I’m loving watching the beach volleyball, men and women.  Slight nitpick, why are the chicks out there in sports bras and the men all covered up?  I do not approve.  Still enjoying the hell out the sport and the American dominance.
  • I didn’t watch the opening ceremonies, but I am damn pissed to find out that the Chinese used a “more attractive” little girl lip syncing to the “less attractive” girl’s singing.  Nice message that you’re sending to that child and millions around that world.  You’re not pretty?  Screw your talent.  Idiots.
  • On the baseball front, the Giants had some kind of anniversary celebration and Bonds showed up and tried to mention, yet again, that he’s not retired.  No, you’re not retired, Barry, but you are done.  Go home, Barroid, nobody wants you.
  • Big baseball trades recently, Manny Ramirez, Jason Bay, Adam Dunn, etc.  I’d like to get worked up about some of them, but why?  Is anything going to change the fact that the Angels are the best team in baseball?  I say no.
  • Speaking of baseball trades, my beloved Cardinals sat on their asses and did nothing at the deadline.  Nope, we don’t need any help.  It’s not like the bullpen hasn’t blown a major league leading 30 saves or anything.
  • Had the Cards not blown those 30 saves, they’d actually be leading their division by a comfortable margin probably.  As it stands now, they’ll finish third behind Milwaukee and the Cubs.
  • As for the Cubs, enjoy your run to the playoffs, you aren’t winning the World Series, yet again.  I’m sick of your lovable losers nickname.  There’s nothing remotely lovable about petulant, tantrum throwing pitchers, getting announcers fired, corking bats and picking fights with teammates.  The Cubs in the last 5 years ladies and gentlemen, real lovable.
  • On the football front, McNabb came out today and complimented TO on his finally becoming mature in his 30’s.  Donovan, I love you, I really do, but stop focusing on TO, that’s so two years ago.  Move on, he did.
  • You know, with all the hoopla from the last year, the Pats have been amazingly quiet this year, they might be the team I’ve heard the least about.  I feel better about that Super Bowl pick daily.
  • I still hate the 72 Dolphins, bitter old men.
  • Back to the Olympics, the US basketball teams are rocking right now.  I hope they keep it up, if the men flub again this year it’s just embarrassing.  With the talent we have on that team, there’s no excuse for not taking gold.

I think that’s all I’ve got right now.  Hopefully Phelps and the swimmers will give me more to talk about along with the gymnastics team.  Michael is 3/3 and going for two more golds tonight.  I’ll be able to stay up for the first one but probably not the second.  Sigh.  I hate the broadcast times.  Go Phelps!

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