Strangely, have you noticed that of all the sports, football wins the
corruption cup every year. I think the U of Miami should be awarded
permanent possession. They’re in the middle of one of their annual
fracases. Nothing unusual, their annual corruption of kids. Good
training if you’re majoring in Fraud.
Solution? Either turn our schools back into educational
institutions, banning the entertainment business, join the World
Wrestling Federation, or let them continue their errant ways but keep
your kids away from the TV, thereby uninfected. Shoo the kids away
from the TV. Someone suggested that we let ex-team members study
instead of practice and put the college prez and staff in the
coliseums of America. You say attendance would drop. Great, that’s
what we’re after and surely there would be some comic moments.
What if you’re loitering on a Manhattan corner debating the purchase
of one of those delightful hotdogs – skin enclosed like the Hot Dog
Association of America recommends: and a fellow red hot lover suddenly
lowers his head and butts you in that part of the anatomy where you
intended the hotdog to eventually reside? A no-brainer. You pick
yourself up – if you can – and call the police. A hushed and
sympathetic crowd gathers around to assist you. They cluck with
condolence. They might even buy you another hot dog.
What if the same event – minus hotdogs – happens on a big green field
surrounded by 80,000 spectators? About half of them cheer, slap
hands. The other half moan like the Manhattan crowd.
Hey, it’s football – the coach recruits at the State Penitentiary.
Violence is applauded. And man and boy has it changed. Kill the QB,
trip or maim the runner, try to read the coaches lips, maybe steal his
signals. No more tackling. That’s as passé, as old-fashioned a sport
as archery. The object is not merely to stop the runner, but put him
in the emergency room. Don’t tackle with arms or shoulder. Just
collide with a dynamite hit. If you’re lucky you just got a raise.
If not this year, when you get out of the hospital next year. And
naturally you dance with glee over your broken neck opponent. (Though
recently, that gets you a minor fine.) That’s sports. Nowhere can I
think of a greater contrast than with tennis, The player serves - the
raucous spectators respectfully hush. Football: the stadium erupts in
screams - the fans favoring the defense make all the bedlam they can
so their opponent mishears the signals. And these are institutions
Spearing, a nuclear weapon if there ever was one, has recently been
outlawed. Can you imagine a 6’4”, 300-pound missile striking the
thorax of a mere mortal? He’d not only drop the ball, but several
vital parts of his anatomy. The crowd growls with vicarious
This is not football – this is the coliseum in Rome where the product
was openly violence. Well, at least they aren’t the hypocrites we
are. They came for blood and got it. We call it a sport.
And believe it or not, at the college level the players are supposed
to engage for free - a rumor now widely dispelled by a hundred
infractions of the rules. And this mayhem is not managed by the World
Wrestling Federation, but educational institutions that are chartered
to instill culture and occupational skills into our youth. And we’re
shocked at the crime rate – as our kids on atrophied legs bunched
around the TV – ignore the great outdoors and scream for blood. What
do you expect – maybe medical practitioners? “That’s clearly a
shattered clavicle.” “Naw, it’s only a dislocated shoulder.” Great
training for potential diagnosticians.
And you can be sure that the directors of this gladiatorial show would
rather their starting QB go 18 for 20 on the field – no interceptions,
than 70 out of 100 on his history test. What does he need to know
about Ben Franklin? We pretend no longer he’s a student and we
pretend no longer that he receives empty handshakes. After all,
clearly, Corruption University is in the entertainment business, not
the educational business. The coliseum in Rome, 200 AD – that’s their
appropriate cultural level.
The humor of Ted, the Scribbler on the Roof, appears in newspapers around the U.S., on National Public Radio in Huntsville, Alabama and numerous web sites.