Tiger, Tiger in the Woods

Fuck Max Kellerman.

First off, I will admit straight up that I didn’t read the article by Dan Lyons about some stupid shit ESPN’s Max Kellerman’s said during some podcast. I’m pretty sure Kellerman’s just using a Tiger sound bite to generate likes or listenes and to sound relevant enough for ESPN to keep paying him. Lyon is probably using the key words “Tiger Woods” as a click bait lure covered in juicy debatable sour cheese in order to drive his numbers up. I admit that I would probably do that too if I had numbers to drive up, but I don’t.
I read his title for the article and that just started me running downhill. I didn’t need to know more about Max or Don or the article to know that what I wanted Max to know was that he was a flea on an elephant’s ass and his thoughts about Tiger and Tiger’s status as an elite athlete matter to nobody but Max. (I assume the same goes for my opinion about Max. I’m more of a nobody than Max could ever be. He’s at least got a byline. Me, I’ve got a blog that a few hundred people a year look at and I’m pretty sure most of them are bots.)

Anyway, back to our theme. An article titled “Max Kellerman Argues Tiger Woods Is Not An ‘Elite Athlete’”

ahem…

Tiger Woods is the only interesting thing that ever happens in golf.

EVER!

Even with all of the new age super fit muscly twenty something kids raised in rich enclaves around the world matriculating from golf academies and now playing a “version” of Tiger Golf (but never reaching his level of intensity, success or domination), nothing fun, exciting or WATCHABLE ever happens in professional golf unless and until Tiger shows up.

I googled the Ratings when Tiger woods is playing versus when he is not. This image was from VOX.com

Just look at his ratings if you doubt his importance. When he’s playing, they ratings always better. When he’s not, they are always worse. When he’s playing, people, mostly men, go to the driving range and the public courses in bigger numbers, buy more golf stuff and generally are more golffy. It’s a direct correlation. It’s like when the Women’s National Soccer Team wins another world cup, enrollment in girls soccer goes way way up and then over the next four years goes back down. It’s because they win. They’re exciting. They’re dominant. They’re historic and heroic. Frankly, they are watchable. Just like Tiger.

Note: In the above scenario, the Men’s National Soccer Team is Rory McIlroy – He’s a good looking kid and we all like him and we want him to do well and we can hope for good things for him, but time after time, it’s been a little disappointing and sooner or later we figure it’s just not going to happen and start to wonder how he get’s paid for that.

Why do you think Networks and sports companies and insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies around the world want to show a round of golf with Tiger playing and will pay extra when he’s there?. Because win lose or draw, there’s something about him that is so eminently watchable. Eyeballs get sticky when Tiger is on the screen.

I just googled the Top Ten Golfers in the World and got a “Who’s Who” of “Who’s that? “

1Scottie Scheffler32170
2Sam Burns21390780
3Cameron Smith21354816
4Hideki Matsuyama21321849
5Tom Hoge111681002
6Talor Gooch111401030
7Viktor Hovland110741096
8Sungjae Im19601210
9Joaquin Niemann18491321
10J.J. Spaun18421328
I’ve heard of Sheffler and Gooch (which is close to cooch so you know guys will remember it) but who are these other guys?

Jordan Spieth is 45th for god’s sake and Brooks Koepka is like 58th. I’ve at least heard of them. No wonder I fall asleep when golf is on,.. well that and a full belly and comfy couch. But I stay awake for Tiger. I’m there for Tiger. To see him win. To see him fail. To see him rise or fall. I’m fuckin there.

My brother in law, I think is a Phil Michelson guy. I’m ok with Phil, but honestly, if it ain’t Tiger, I got other things to do.

Yeah, so I just read the article about the interview/comments (I felt like I should) and the argument he makes is essential that Tiger Woods isn’t a linebacker or an Olympic sprinter. His impression of an elite athlete is that of a very fast or very strong person that can crush a quarterback or a baseball or a world record time. I think the problem is that Kellerman doesn’t think of golf as an athletic event. The fat bellies he plays with and the duffers he’s known his entire life reinforce that concept. Golf is athletic, at the pro level, even if they’ve had guys named “the Walrus” playing the game. There are fat guys in lots of sports… sports in which being fat can be an advantage. Sports at which those “fat” guys are at the pinnacle; the elite level of success and historic longevity. Tiger Woods is not a football player or a hockey player or a baseball player or any of the brutish team sports for which we wear jerseys. He’s one of the best if not the actual best that has ever played a game that is a singular fight against a piece of designed ground while in the presence of a few dozen other men that are also in that one on one contest with the course. They are not a team against the course or fighting against each other. And if you’ve played golf seriously, you know that even more than playing against the course you are playing against yourself; your habits, your shortcomings, you weaknesses. Tiger has been at the pinnacle of that day to day fight many times and he is and ever will be in the circle of the best that every played.

So Max, you can say he’s not football player; in your mind not an elite athlete. You can say he’s never run the 40 in under 4 seconds. You can even say that his homerun numbers will never compete with even the lowliest grunt in the history of baseball. But, he is an elite athlete. He is a bright and shining STAR. Even after a near fatal car crash, near amputation and years of previous back surgery and hip work and knee work and shoulder work, and legal work physical therapy and, I’m sure, therapy for his father issues, he’s the single most competitive guy lacing up his Nikes and going out to do battle yet again. It matters to him.

He’s got the (wait for it)… Eye of the Tiger.

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Real Moneyball

I love the fact that Luka Doncic’ plays basketball for us here in Dallas. I fully believe that what a player gets paid, though exorbitant, is a factor of the market and that whatever Luka and Mark Cuban agree to is what they agree to. I’m not a player in that. I don’t benefit except to watch him play and hopefully win and I am not harmed except in that as a fan, ticket price is a factor in how many games I can attend and as a business, running a team has overhead like salaries that are factored into ticket prices. Besides those factors, it ain’t up to me and it is what it is and nothing I will ever say about it will ever make a difference. But for a moment let’s look at what the money actually is.

This table (shown below) is the payout schedule of his 5 year contract extension if the salary cap stays where it is projected at the moment (but that is likely to go up after the season is over). Let’s take only the first year of the contract; $36,600,000. That’s his base. That’s the minimum he will get. There are also built in dollars for achievements like winning in the first round or second round of playoffs or winning the title. There are also bonuses for being points leader for the team, the division, the league as well as a number of other items like double doubles and triple doubles. Those numbers are not published and are not considered attributable regarding the salary cap. Let’s just discuss the base. (Also, he doesn’t work all year. It’s hard work and he has to stay in shape, yada yada yada, but he’s being paid for a pre season, a season and hopefully a post season.) Also, merch wise, the NBA contract is purposefully cloudy on this matter but players also get a portion of merchandise sales. I’m not sure if that means Luka get a piece of everything with his name and number on it or if all players get a cut of overall merch sales, but it’s an enormous industry in the multi billions of dollars per year. Also, not included in the cap

$36,600,000.00 per year equals $3,050,000 per month, $703,846.15 per week and $100,273.97 per day. (that’s $4,178.08 per hour awake or asleep). I know I obsess about this kind of thing; I even wrote about it when Rick Carlisle, the former Maverick’s coach took a job in Indianapolis for about 10 million a year. They suck and he still gets paid the full amount.

Luka could spend, give away or burn $1,000 a day and it would be less than half a months pay from his lowest paid year in the 5 year deal. I think, like Brewster, I’d find it difficult to spend that much money every day. There’s only so many things to buy. I’d be happy to try. I mean, I’m no quitter, but nobody is ever going to pay me “day dream money”.

I’m happy for him, truly, and I’m happy for other athletes and gifted people that get to make that kind of money. But I also let my mind wander over what could be done with that kind of capital, that kind of power or influence. The $212Mil in this contract isn’t even the tip of his iceberg if he stays healthy and continues playing. The year after this contract expires, if everything goes the way it’s going, it could be a full sized 18 wheeler filled with Benjamins. He could end up being a guy that makes 100 million a year playing basketball and he won’t be the only one. I hope he can find a way to do some actual good with all that money but in the end, it’s his money and he can do with it as he pleases, up to and including buying every shiny thing he ever wants.

One other thing that should be said about this, if Cuban can afford to pay this to one player on his roster,.. on a roster filled with well paid young men, he’s making money in the deal.

Mark won’t be taking a loss. He’s gonna be fine.

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Earwax Ads BE GONE

Anybody else getting that Google ad thrown at them with the disgusting hunk of ear wax? I started seeing it like every day. It’s fuckin gross and now I’m seeing it on food sites. That’s appetizing.

I clicked on the Ad Choices thing and instructed google that I didn’t want to see that ad again and they said, ok, “You shouldn’t see that ad again.” What they should have typed is “You won’t see THAT ad again.” But I saw two dozen more ads with ugly hunks of earwax in them. I had to follow the exact same procedure for each and every ad because Google considers different sizes of an ad, different from the ad you just objected to. Every size and configuration you could have imagined yet all with the same dark, yellowy brown ear booger like you’d dig out of the ear of a 60 year old homeless guy popped up and had to be shot down. And then, just when I thought I’d won, thought I’d vanquished the ear booger beast, they started in with a new set of different but equally gross ear cleaning ads.

How did we get here?

Is there something about my age or gender or viewing habits that have led them to believe that I would like to be bombarded with pictures of giant chunks of gross ear wax? Have I ever, in my entire life, purchased an ear cleaning fluid, solution, unguent, salve, machine or plunger other than the same fucking Q-tips that well all buy?

Hey, if your business is ear wax, you’re fucking gross. Leave me out of it. I don’t want to see your ads. I will instruct Ad Choices until I’m blue in the face and my fingers lose the ability to function that I do not want to see your ads. Further, I will tell everybody I know how gross your shit is and how your visual ads are off putting, unappealing and gag inducing. I do not wish to see YOUR ads. PERIOD!

This is for Google
.
Hey GOOGLE! If you’re watching and you know we all know you’re watching, even if it’s just a robot or a building of robots operated by robots, your maximization of my data stream is abhorrent to me. I’m an older guy and likely younger people have stopped giving a shit about it but I don’t want a store or a website or or a restaurant to have access to my buying, eating, viewing, drinking, screwing habits. Those are my habits, my experience, my life things and stuff. I know I’m not alone because one of the hottest selling tech items you can buy these days is a VPN or Virtual Private Network. An over simplified definition of a VPN is that it’s a mask to shield your identity from data miners like Facebook and Google and even more nefarious folks looking to steal your shit. (And by more nefarious, I mean actively and openly trying to steal your money and identity rather than insidious which is what Facebook and Google are;…. as I type this on Google Chrome into my blog provider who is about to be acquired).

The war of the future, they say, is a data war. They who control data control the world. We are only just barely in front of the Chinese in this race to own all the data. Guess what to all of you young people running away from us old folks on Facebook to the new thing, Tik Tok; that’ app’s a direct pipeline for your data to zip lightning fast all the way to China with zero protections. Hope that works out for you. I won’t be here long enough for it to matter but you will be. Whoever wins the data war it will be after I’ve started drooling at the elder care unit and honestly, at my income level, they don’t even really care about my data. But you movers and shakers out there with disposable income that are deciding not to have kids and deciding not to own homes or cars, get ready for a world that knows you before you step out the virtual door and tries to sell you something every virtual step of the way.



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Don’t let the Door Hit Ya On the Way Out

I’m not going to cover any particularly new ground today. I’d heard about this and was going to write about it and then saw the other night on John Oliver’s show that they covered it in some detail. I will probably hit a few of their points but maybe a few of my own and maybe I’ll just talk myself out of it. Let’s see how it goes.

Last week, the former police officer who was voted in as the police union rep for the Fraternal Brotherhood of Police for the City of Chicago after the previous union rep had died from COVID-19, sent an email and a YouTube message to all of the 12,134 uniformed officers, the roughly 1,200 detective grade officers and the nearly 1,000 administrative officers wherein he told them not to fill out the online form provided to them by the city regarding their COVID 19 Vaccination status. Now, mind you, the vaccine mandate in Chicago has not been enforced, as such. They are just trying to encourage city employees to get vaccinated and there is time before any deadline hits. This online form is just there so that the city can get a handle on how many of the officers charged with the responsibility to Protect and Serve the citizens of Chicago had actually taken the initiative to get vaccinated in the nearly 10 months since several very effective vaccines have been available. This former officer; this union rep, John Catanzara, told them that under no circumstances were they to comply with the request to fill out the form and he likened the process to the holocaust and the poison gas showers used at Buchenwald. And though he later apologized for that reference, the thing is, he still did it. He thought those thoughts and worded those words., but likely less coherently and with spelling errors.

Currently, about 1/3 of Chicago’s police are defying the mandate completely and 1% have quit or say they will quit rather than get vaccinated. They will quit their jobs, their callings, this thing that for most of them defines them utterly because they don’t want to get a vaccine that is safe and effective… because why? Well, because Trump and FOX and the disinformation mafia of ultra right whackadoos told them some stupid story about shriveled dicks and mutated genes and not enough testing and the end of the world through injected chips too small to see in a microscope but somehow strong enough to talk to satellites and control thoughts. That’s why. Yeah, it sounds stupid just writing it down. My fingers feel more stupid now.

This union rep, Catanzara, is literally the worst of the worst. He has more complaints against him from WITHIN the department that 96% of his fellow officers. He also has an impressive number of reprimands over his treatment of civilians and though the number was not reported, the word impressive was. In 2017 he called Muslims savages and said they all deserve a bullet. He has defended the Jan 6th Rioters / Trump supporters that stormed the Capitol. He was suspended without pay for obscene and inflammatory social media posts, making false reports and being insubordinate and/or disrespectful to supervisors. He has compared vaccine mandates to the Holocaust and most recently, as we are discussing here, he told the police union members to ignore the city’s covid vaccine reporting mandate

In other places; other cities, around the US, where mandates exist, some percentage of the police officers in those cities have either quit or said that they will quit over the vaccine mandates. But here’s a thing you won’t here unless you read the entire article(s) on these news bits: The actual number of cops that have actually quit, is around 1%. Regarding police statistically, you know what else is a small percentage? The recognized percentage of bad cops in the cop population is about 3%.

I say Fuck’em. Let them quit.

This is another one of those circumstances that I have written about before regarding some police that force their cities and departments to some ultimatum by saying they’ll quit if they don’t get their way. Honestly, them quitting,.. I think it’s a good thing… good solution. By letting them quit, we’ve probably saved our collective selves a lot of investigations down the road involving cops that made bad decisions, broke from policy and endangered citizens, etc. This is one of those things that I don’t know for sure, but you know, I just know,.. I’m willing to bet money that most of the disciplinary actions required by these departments in any given year are clustered around these officers. Let’s face it, they are not good at making decisions. Their job is to serve and to protect and they are choosing a political position fed to them by Trumpist philosophy propaganda that runs in diametric opposition to that protection and service. It’s bad enough that these people who are entrusted with life and death decision have chosen to believe the crap emanating from Trump and FOX News and even worse or crazier sources, but they have also decided to ignore public health and service in favor of these conspiracy idiocies and embraced them on faith and as identity. We are better off without them being police. We are better off without them carrying guns and generally crazy bullshit extremist beliefs and persecution complexes about the victimization of Trump supporters into the streets that they are supposed to be protecting.

Short run and long run, I say this is a plus. This is literally removing the flies from the ointment.

As far as I can see, it’s all upside.

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Enough Already

I was really hoping that by now we would have downsized our daily Trump news intake. The election that he lost was last November. In a few days it will be October.

Everybody, and I mean EVERYBODY, has a book out. Nobody inside the family yet has taken the opportunity to get a check, but it wouldn’t surprise me if Jared and Ivanka penned a tome together at some point in the near future. It would surprise me if it wasn’t ghost written for them but otherwise, the Trumps, et. al. know where to dig for fast cash and books are right up there.

I remember when I couldn’t wait to see all of the books coming out about what a (fill in the negative adjective here) Trump was; before being in office, while being in office, on the way out of office and since being out of office. I wrote about it here. I opined that it would be something of a cottage industry and boy I wasn’t wrong. Of course, the problem is, was and will be going forward that anybody that had an important thing to say should have said it years ago. “Now” is way past too late to matter and, on top of that, it all seems to be the same basic “he’s a toddler and we spent all of our time trying to keep the china from crashing to the floor in his wake” kind of take. Worse, none of it, and I truly mean, NONE – OF – IT, seems to make even the slightest of differences. Those of use who knew he was a bumbling Darth Vader haven’t had that feeling enhanced or deepened by these literary disclosures and the folks that see him as the anointed coming of the new Christ also have not changed their opinions, choosing instead to view all of these revelations as lies and slander and clear evidence of a government conspiracy to destroy Trump, Christianity and America.

So books are still being written.

Members of the inner circle, family notwithstanding, all have publishers and deals. People in the second circle and the third and forth circles all the way out to the 7th circle of hell have gotten deals. If you brushed up against him in the last 10 years, you can probably get some money for a tell all and I don’t think that market is going to dry up this year or even the next year or two; least wise, not until he’s either dead or standing trial and even then, that will only serve to spark further interest and publishing.

Trump was right about this much: He’s good for ratings. The word “Trump” as a key word or search term will put this blog entry into a higher circulation and click rate than it would if I was writing about Biden or Garlic or Toyota Tundras. He sells books and he generates clicks. Don’t think for a moment that MSN, Yahoo and Google don’t know that. It’s their bread and butter and by that I mean it sells ad space; a lot of it.

And just today (9/28/2021), proof that good, bad or indifferent, Trump gets ratings; 9 of the 25 stories circulating on the front of MSN, a full 36% of the stories in the big news widget, are about Trump or connected to Trump and have a picture of Trump to entice your finger to click that mouse or touch that screen. There are an additional 5 stories farther down the page regarding Trump, Trump’s family, Trump’s friends, Trump’s damage, Trump’s infantilism, Trump, Trump, Trump, Trump, Trump.

Fuckin shut up about Trump.

For the love of all that we hold dear, give it a rest. 1 day without Trump. Please oh please oh please.

Y’know what I’m going to do?

I’m going to sit right down and write a piece about how tired I am that everybody is writing about Trump all the time.

There’s a fuckin plan.

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