Monday, December 29, 2014

Ndamukong Suh's Faux Pas Earns Him One Game Suspension

In the fourth quarter of the last game in the regular season between the Detroit Lions and the Green Bay Packers at Lambau Field, Lions Defensive Tackle Ndamukong Suh seems to add injury to insult to the opposing quaterback.  As Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers lay on the turf after being tackled by Suh, Suh seems to take two steps backwards to step on the quarterback's ankle and calf.

Although Fox Sports Commentator Mike Pereira (who previously was an NFL VP of Officiating) was skeptical if  Suh's bad steps were intentional, that is not the view of the powers that be in the NFL.  Suh was suspended for one game, which happens to be the NFC wild card matchup between the Detroit Lions and the Dallas Cowboys.

It may not have helped Suh's initial cause that his aggressive playing style has caused him $216,875 from four incidents (including one stomping) over his five season pro career.  Suh has the right to appeal but they can go to the videotape.

The Lions have not won a playoff game since 1991, when they defeated the Dallas Cowboys. While the Lions have a vaulted defense this season, they may have to make due without Suh.

Suh is a free agent after this season. Will teams be willing to pay be bucks only to have their star tackle unavailable due to league discipline issues?

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Gov. Chris Christie on Being a Cowboys Fan

Governor Chris Christie (R-NJ) attended the Dallas Cowboys-Philadelphia Eagles game on Sunday night and even sat in the Visitor Owner's box at Lincoln Field.   This appearance did not go over well with some grumpy Garden State area gridiron fans. 

While at the game, fans directed some choice words towards Governor Christie for sitting with "the enemy".  Philadelphia Councilman Jim Kenney (D- At Large) used his official Twitter account to share some ad hominem attacks against Governor Christie. 

So much for Kenney's aspiration to "Let's be decent to each other." However, Councilman Kenney is presumptuous that Christie was ingratiating himself with "Texas ass" for 2016.    Governor Christie has been a Cowboys fan since age nine.  This was something which came up during his first run for high office in Trenton.

Governor Christie refused to engage with Councilman Kenney asking: "First of all--who?"  Then Christie opined:  “I don’t even know who this guy is. But listen, there’s lots of people who attempt to use me to increase their own fame.  He’s got to get somebody else beside his parents to know who he is, so that’s good.”  This reinforced Christie's rough and tumble reputation of not suffering fools gladly but doing so without drawing proverbial blood.

But to be fair, there may have been a counter-intuitive political calculation with Chris Christie's unabashed Cowboy fan-dom.  It was not necessarily to win friends deep in the heart of Texas.  It is more likely that it was a Sister Souljah moment.

During the 1992 Presidential campaign, then candidate Governor Bill Clinton (D-AR) was questioned about whether he agreed with Sister Souljah, a hip hop artist and political activist, on black on white violence in the wake of the 1992 Los Angeles riots.  Mr. Clinton publically repudiated Sister Souljah and cultivated a centrist political reputation going into the 1992 General Election.

In this vein, Governor Christie used his lifelong support of the Dallas Cowboys as a means to reinforce his brand.  Rather than take a mealy mouthed political position to root for the "home team", Christie rejected this "namby-pamby crap” of hiding his love for his team.   By standing firm to his internal compass and offering straight talk, it also reinforced Christie's brand.

UPDATE 01/05/2014  Gov. Christie joined Jerry Jones in the owners box at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas and celebrated the Cowboy's wild card playoff victory against the Detroit Lions.

The Daily Mail (UK)  speculated that Gov. Christie was alienating supporters in the Tri-State New York area.  Cynical politicos questioned  if another high profile Cowboys appearance might soften anti-Yankee sentiments in the Lone Star State's presidential primary. Fashionistas wondered if that was Christie's lucky sweater or the extent of his dressy casual wardrobe. 

Friday, December 12, 2014

Primal Scream Streakers Run Reverse Around Harvard Yard to Bypass Ferguson Protest

During the 1960s, a students started a tradition to shout a primal scream out their windows at midnight for ten minutes on the eve of final exams as a stress release.  By the 1990s, this exercise in youthful exhuberance devolved into an event in which everyone comes out to gawk, as many as five score of streakers (who are often inebriated) gather to run around Harvard Yard counterclockwise.  

The hedonistic happening has a quasi-official imprimatur, as the Harvard Band (dressed only in their parade tops).   About 25 Harvard administrators also attended this year and attempted to choreograph the organized chaos.

This year, about 30 activists  tried to co-opt the Harvard Primal Scream by imposing a "Black Lives Matter" protest prior to the run. Originally, protesters wanted to have a die-in but were convinced for student safety to revise their rabble rousing plans.

As conveyed by senior Aubrey Walker, the co-director of "Cultural Rhythms" at the Harvard Foundation for Intercultural and Race Relations, the protesters wanted to have four and a half minutes of silence before the run.  In fact, protesters convinced the band not to play during their silence. Alas, there were unexpected kinks with this protest plan.

The streaking participants could not keep quiet during the conscience raising silence, so protesters chanted "Silence, silence".   When that had no effect, the Dean of College Rakesh Khurana was hoisted by a half naked student to bring order, but that had no avail. In fact, some runners followed their tradition and chanted "U-S-A, U-S-A", which protesters interpreted as a slap in the face supporting institutional power and that these fortunate sons refused to check their "White Privilege".

Shortly after this stand-off, the Primal Scream streakers ran clockwise around the Yard, conveniently avoiding the protesters.

Harvard Primal Scream, spring 2014

Some later said that had they known about the protest beforehand, they would have joined in.  Others said there was too much of a crowd to know that they were being organized to protest.

It is interesting that at a time when accusations about sexual misconduct has roiled college campuses that Harvard hosts the Primal Scream and has university officials organizing it.  But regardless of what one thinks of the propriety of streaking through campus at midnight at one of the nation's elite institutes of higher education, this was not the time to raise consciousness.  It is asking too much for drunken, naked students who want to have fun and frivolity to silently shiver in at the witching hour in the New England wintery cold for a protest was not going to go well. 

Despite the chaos and hurt feelings, this sort of smiling jog might have convinced the late Joan Rivers to consider running

Barack Obama on the Morning News

Well, it seems that for Barack Obama, politics is not his favorite sport in the District of Calamity. Here's hoping that that the Presidential Daily Briefing (PDB) does not get the short shrift to Mike & Mike in the Morning.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Tom Brady: "We're not choirboys"

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was called a poor sport for swearing on the sidelines during at the two minute warning in the Patriots 26-21 loss to the Green Bay Packers.

During an interview with WEEI-FM, Brady blustered that the F-bomb was a great word in the heat of the moment.  It should be noted however that Brady's  beautiful bride, Brazilian model  Gisele B√ľndchen, does not permit such profane outbursts at home  

Mia Hamm on Performance