Saturday, September 22, 2007

Topping It All Off

TALK ABOUT EXCRUCIATING! Last week I wrote about the Phillies' horrible loss to the Braves where they blew a 5-run lead to the Braves over the last 2 innings to fall 8-7, calling it the worst loss of the year for any team. Well, since then the Phillies have played excellent baseball to get within 1.5 games of the Mets.

But the excruciating loss in question was the New York Yankees heartbreaking extra inning loss to the Blue Jays. They trailed a typically dominating Roy Halladay 4-0 before finally getting to him into the 9th. The Yankees scored 4 runs in that inning to tie it, including RBI hits by Robinson Cano and Jason Giambi, then lost it in 14 innings 5-4. That's gotta be like a dagger to the heart this late in the year. To make matters worse, Boston's 8-1 win over Tampa Bay extended the Red Sox lead in the AL East back up to 2.5 with about 10 games left to go.

Taking some of the sting out of the Yankees loss is the fact that barring a total collapse, they're pretty much locked into the Wild Card playoff spot. The division would still be sweet, just for the way it would fuck with the heads of all the dicks in Red Sox Nation, but the playoffs is still the playoffs. Most of the time it doesn't come down to the 7th game of a series anyway, so there's not all that big an advantage to winning the division versus winning the wild card.

For the Mets, however, the story is a little different. They've gone into the tank to such a degree over the last few weeks that if they DON'T win the division, they're in real danger of missing the postseason altogether! Talk about sweet if you're a Yankees fan. Oh the humanity if you're a fan of the Mets! They've been blowing big leads left and right. They blew 4-run cushions in back to back games versus the mighty Washington Nationals, and now are hanging on by their fingernails as the clutch band of brothers known as the Phils of Philly manage to squeeze out victory on an almost nightly basis, except for the games they play during the day, which are also usually wins. Most importantly, the Phils have owned the Mets this year no matter where the games are played, including winning the last 7 times they've met. That's what has kept the Phils in it till the end.

Speaking of the end, the Big Blue Trash Talking Crew is 0-2 in the brand new NFL season, surrendering 80 points over the first two weeks. The Jersey Giants have the worst locker room in the sport, with a deadly combo of combustible head coach, sensitive egomaniac players and, most potent of all, bloodthirsty sportswriters and already fed-up fans. The meltdown reached core levels late in the week, with Antonio Pierce and Michael Strahan displaying a total lack of class and acting like the spoiled millionaires found among pro athletes all too often these days.

Just two weeks ago Pierce was telling anyone within earshot how tight-knit and close the team was this year. Now after their bad start, Pierce first refused to speak to the media earlier in the week, then took to blasting an ear-splitting air horn at reporters who dared asked him about the Giants defense and why it has been so atrocious. Then Strahan, for the second week in a row, loudly chastised the press because he didn't like the tone of their questions. No kidding. Last week someone asked him about going for the all-time sack record against Brett Favre, who gift-wrapped a sack six years ago that allowed Strahan to set the record for sacks in a season. That ticked off Strahan, setting off this childish outburst: "How did I know six years later an idiot like you would ask me that question. I'd expect nothing less from you. And yes, I called you an idiot. You know better. I've known you how long? It's six years. You had hair six years ago."

Then this past Thursday, Strahan again reacted angrily when somone had the nerve to bring up how passive the defense has looked the first two weeks. Predictably, the touchy one let loose another verbal barrage at the reporter:

"Anybody can sit on the sideline and look at the bench and go, 'Oh.' That is crap. You know what? That is. It is just so disappointing to me when you guys had me come out here to answer questions and you ask stuff that is just... Be creative. That is crap. Coach (Tom Coughlin) answered it. Don't ask me what you asked Coach. I am not Coach."

And Coach sure has his hands full trying to rein in this historically disgruntled squad before his own unmerry reign becomes history. One thing we can state with some degree of certainty is that Tiki Barber and his coach-bashing, self-promoting ways technically may be gone, but what he says about the current state of his old team is hardly irrelevant, given the multiple forums he can still use to get his viewpoint across -- ubiquitously holding court these days on seemingly every other talk show. It's almost always more than just football when you talk about the Giants. This week, Barber used his satellite radio show to say the following about his former teammate:
"Now that the Giants are struggling, first of all (Pierce) runs away from it early in the week and now he's refusing to answer questions by being completely disrespectful to a group of people who are just trying to do their job. That's the job of media, ask the question. And you don't have to answer it. But don't be rude."
Hard to argue with that, even considering the source. Another ex-football star who's now a commentator is Sterling Sharpe. Here's what the ex-Packer WR had to say about Pierce setting off his air horn indoors to intimidate the beat writers gathered around his locker:
"It's childish and very trivial and totally uncalled for. Whether I caught 10 passes for 115 yards and two touchdowns or I caught one for five and we lost by 14, I was going to talk, because if you're going to talk when things are going good, I need you to talk when things are going bad. And that's how it was.

But don't be childish. That is so ridiculous. It irks me when I see guys act like that. That's ridiculous. Are you 14? Or are you 28, 29, making millions of dollars to play a kid's game. And you act like this?"
Now isn't that refreshing in a business where ex-jocks don't usually rip their own in that way.

With too many me-first guys like Plaxico Burress, Jeremy Shockey and Brandon Jacobs in the fold, the distractions around the Giants could soon become insurmountable. Coughlin had his shot to discipline when it might have made a difference, now he's like a substitute teacher who just lost the classroom. Looking back, they should have told Strahan that if he's not in camp and ready to play by the third preseason game, then don't bother coming at all. Because that sets a horrible example, and the result is Strahan's been a nearly invisible non factor through two games. He gets a break versus a Washington O-Line that's missing key pieces tomorrow, so this might be the game he makes an impact, if he's got anything left in the tank as a player, or any passion for the game as opposed to the money.

With a loss on the road versus the suddenly resurgent Skins tomorrow, the Giants record would drop to an ugly 0-3, and a flood of failure suddenly gushes into a tsunami of panic and finger-pointing.
__________________________________________
If there's a bigger douche than Marc Ecko in the public spotlight -- besides upper echelon, front-line jackasses like Rudy Giuliani and Donald Trump, of course, who practically invented being a fucking douche -- I've yet to come across him. Sure, the present willfully mediocre pop culture offers no shortage of assholes and morons to hate ... but sometimes you have a visceral reaction of unrelenting loathsomeness that cuts across all other strata of disgust. Such is the hatred I reserve for Ecko -- a wannabe wigger of epic proportions even before last week, when he publicly revealed that he had purchased the Barry Bonds record-breaking HR ball for over $750,000.

Now, that alone would elevate him to all-time douche-bag status if he never again made news. But then the sleazy publicity hound takes out an ad announcing his intention to let the public vote to determine what to do with the ball For instance, you can vote to shoot it into space, brand it with an asterisk and send it to the Hall of Fame, etc... Stunningly pointless!

Ecko's claim to fame involves being the successful purveyor of overpriced t-shirts targeted to the clueless fashion victims who make up the hip-hop culturatti. The fashion world itself is a stomach turning phenomenon that is best ignored at all costs, with its vapid models, ridiculous couture, and various nauseating parasites and hangers-on who constitute the industry.

But Ecko -- real name Marc
Milecofsky -- would be easy to ignore if he didn't come across our radar screens for reasons other than his hideous accessories foisted upon an unsuspecting public. He's the kind of assface who, in a blatantly transparent attempt to garner street cred, speaks up for the rights of graffiti "artists" whenever these vandals are caught defacing someone else's property with their heinous "tags" or whatever they call their illiterate scrawling.

According to the always-reliable Wikipedia:
"In April 2006, Ecko released a video depicting himself applying graffiti to the left wing engine of Air Force One. The video, directed by ad director Randy Krallman, was a hoax, and was created “to induce you, the viewer of the video, to think critically about freedom of expression and speech and the government’s responses to the same.”[13] However, others dismissed it as a publicity stunt.[14]
"In the same year, Ecko backed seven young graffiti artists who filed a lawsuit against New York City, over its anti-graffiti law (introduced by Councilman Peter Vallone, Jr.) banning minors from possessing spray paint or broad-tipped markers.[15] Ecko's lawyer Daniel Perez acted as counsel for the plaintiffs.[16] In May 2006, District Judge George B. Daniels put in place a temporary injunction preventing the City from enforcing that law.[17] Judge Daniels said the legislation is “like telling me I can eat an apple, but I can’t buy an apple, no one can sell me an apple and I can’t bring it to work for lunch.” In June 2006, the Federal appeals court upheld Daniels' decision.[18] Ecko said “The motif of graffiti is one that has the right to exist credibly, and it is great to see the courts make a distinction between illegal vandalism and the motif of legal graffiti as a legitimate art form that cannot be pushed aside by legislators.”[19]

Are these not the actions of a complete dope trying to ingratiate himself with the hip-hoppers, thugs and wigger wannabes who are likely to be seen sporting his crappy gear -- sold under cutting-edge brand names like G-Unit Clothing Company and Zoo York. Oooh, Marc, you're such a player. Douche.

As far as the HR ball goes, I completely agree with Barry Bonds this time when he calls Ecko "an idiot." Not only is Bonds right in this case, but you just know Ecko thought Bonds was such an easy target that mocking his accomplishments, however tarnished in the public court of opinion, would get Ecko some kind of positive response, perhaps even an outpouring of gratitude. But the public probably also saw through Ecko's shameless attempt to get his name in the paper. And most people probably just shook their heads like I did and mumbled "douche-bag " to themselves when they read that somebody was stupid enough to pay all that money for a baseball that nobody would want for free.

One positive of the whole affair is that it has spawned a terrific, clever Website -- www.vote756marcecko.com -- which gives us the chance to turn the tables and vote on the fate of Marc Ecko! Brilliant! It starts off by stating,
"WE ALL HAVE AN OPINION ABOUT MARC ECKO, WHO BOUGHT BARRY BONDS' RECORD-BREAKING 756TH HOME RUN BALL. Most feel he is an idiot who is just trying to stir up the pot. Others believe he is doing justice to baseball and America with his website (Dodgers fans). But we can all agree that he is definitely trying to get his name out there.
I have my own opinion, he's an idiot."
Now, Ecko is obscenely wealthy because the malleable MTV generation and its hip-hop counterpart will wear anything with a brand name on it that smacks of "street" -- paying through the nose while buying into a ludicrous mythology. But god is nothing if not the wielder of an often perverse sense of the absurd. For instance, in the same world of fashion that a sorry sack of shit like Ecko inhabits, He made a similarly smarmy bag of crap like Tommy Hilfiger rich beyond compare, with the Rod Serlingesque catch being: But you have to continue being Tommy Hilfiger for the rest of your born days!

Idiot
sure seems to the epithet of choice when forced to confront a schmuck like Ecko. I just chose option B on the vote756marcecko Website:
"Brand "IDIOT" onto his face, then send him to the Stupidity Hall of Fame." Boy, it feels good to make a difference.

3 comments:

Serge A. Storms said...

I miss the days when atheletes remembered they're getting paid ridiculous amounts of money to play a game. It seems that was a previous generation in most sports. Sure, there was always the drug related controversy (re: Daryl Strawberry)or the occasional brawl with audience members or bar stool sports critics (re: Charles Barkley), but rarely did it degrade into the levels seen in today's atheletes. And it's a shame too, because there's so many that don't give in to the temptation of the rock-star lifestyle they can afford and give back to the community, and again it's usually a blurb in the metro section of the local papers. It's also sad, and you'll probably not like this comparison, but the Giants of today have become the Cowboys of yesterday, when that team was mired in conflict and overbearing egos.

On to Mark Ecko.

There are few occasions where I feel public stabbings are acceptable, even encouragable. This poster child for post-birth abortions is one of those occasions. You can tell just looking at the vacant expression in his eyes that he stumbled on his success purely by chance. There was no real thought put into his retard-based fashion empire. It just happened, like a random bout of diahrreah, and just as welcome. The concept of "street cred" coming from clothes made by a wigger is laughable in its irony. Even in the 'hood that is the area around my workplace, I see the project housing crew wearing the Ecko shorts down around their knees with shirts that were designed to fit people the size of Louis Anderson around their minute, wiry frames.

I really hope this guy falls off the face of the planet soon.

Wardens World said...

There's a pic of Marc Ecko wearing a t-shirt that reads: IT'S: Marc With a 'C' ... only a true weenie would be caught dead in such a shirt. Yeah, he's just a horrible publicity hound. No physical punishment would be too severe for this turd.

I like your line about the '90s Cowboys being "mired in conflict and overbearing egos." But remember: it ain't braggin' if you can do it. But on the whole, these players and their attitudes would be unrecognizable to the athletes of just a short time ago. A reflection of the culture at large, and examples of how money changes everything. Or at least greed does.

Those are my big cultural pronouncements for today. More where that came from...

Serge A. Storms said...

It is pretty ridiculous. It would be one thing if these guys were getting paid the average American salary and stuggling to get by paycheck to paycheck to make ends meet. I'd actually welcome a bit of bitching about salaries and dealing with the press. Chalk it up to "not in my job description." But with the way some of these guys get paid, a little bit of press shouldn't bother them. I understand being upset because apparently you suck and your team loses and all that, but lashing out over legitimate questions at guys just trying to earn 1/10 of what you make is pretty damn stuped.