Archive for the ‘NCAA Track And Field’ Category

The story goes something like this: Europa is a beautiful woman from a wealthy aristocratic family. If she was around today, she’d be the subject of a reality television series, and she’d get into Twitter fights with Kim Kardashian all the time, and Lindsay Lohan would totally think she’s a bitch.

Anyway, there’s this super powerful guy, Zeus – kind of like a less benevolent version of Barack Obama, if Barack Obama was an omniscient dictator and not merely an elected official. Zeus sees her and he’s all like, “Whoa. I gotsta get me some of that.” But instead of just going up to her, and being like, “Yo, I’m Zeus, the father of gods and men. What’s up?” he decides on a different tactic.

He’s not really into the whole subtlety thing so he transforms himself into a white bull, joins up with Europa’s dad’s herd and starts stalking her from a distance as an animal. Typical. She spots this white bull, which probably looks something like that thing that the hockey player David Booth killed during the lockout. He’s unique looking, and so she wanders over to pet him. She pretty much gives him a belly rub, and then because he seems super domesticated, she jumps on his back, and is all like, “Giddy up.”

Zeus says, “Sweet,” and then he starts booking it across Greece with Europa straddling or sitting sidesaddle depending on how corrupt your imagination is. He gets to the sea and starts swimming all the way to this little Mediterranean island getaway. Once he gets there, he tells her that he’s actually Zeus – something that didn’t come up during the multi-hour abduction – and then he makes her his sex slave.

She’s not really into him at first, but eventually learns to love him, and he makes her a queen of the island and gives her lots of jewelry and cool stuff like a javelin that doesn’t miss no matter who throws it. He also aligned some stars, which in my opinion is a bit show-offy, to resemble the bull. It’s called Taurus, and I’m pretty sure that Ford calls one of their cars by that name, probably as an homage to the kidnapping rapist.

I bring this story up because there’s an important little Latin phrase that’s used in a dramatic retelling of this legend: Quod licet Iovi, non licet bovi. The phrase is translated literally as “What is legitimate for Zeus, is not legitimate for oxen,” but is more liberally translated to “Gods may do what cattle may not.” It’s a phrase often used by people who want to be thought of as smarter than they actually are to indicate a double standard.

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Surprisingly, it wasn’t Grantland to which Jorge Luis Borges was referring when he wrote:

Writing long [form] is a laborious and impoverishing act of foolishness: expanding in five hundred pages an idea that could be perfectly explained in a few minutes. A better procedure is to … offer a summary, a commentary.

I enjoy a good read. I even enjoy a good, long read. More often than not though, I enjoy that good, long read in theory more than in practice. I’ve grown accustomed to a certain amount of efficiency in the content I consume. There are times when reading a 2,500 word piece comparing a certain sports event to a corresponding piece of popular culture simply isn’t practical, no matter how appealing the byline might read. It’s these stories that end up in internet purgatory, a tab in my browser that doesn’t get read.

And so, for the sake of all those like me, I thought I’d spend some time each week and read through the pieces that would normally be the wallflower equivalents of internet narrative journalism. Below you’ll find summaries of the best long-form pieces that made the rounds this week.

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