In the before time when television programming consisted primarily of things that used good ol’ creativity and original thought to entertain me, and make me either laugh or think (or anything in between), I would have liked to be in the room when the idea for the first “reality” show was floated.
My television history may be a little off here mostly because there are very few things in this life I care less about than the history of reality TV, but I believe the first such program to receive that label was Survivor. Say what you will about that particular corner of popular culture, but at least Survivor and the other similar shows it spawned (most notably, The Amazing Race) is a reality show and a game show fused into one. We can become involved in the competition, even if it’s just a bunch of people standing on a log for nine hours.
Now, reality TV is usually far removed from actual reality, with producers flirting with and often accomplishing vicious stereotyping by cherry picking people on the most extreme end of their theme to represent a group. Then when there are cameras present to make the lives of already atypical people even less normal, boom, you have TV gold, Jerry.
It’s a simple and tired formula, and Packers fans are the latest subject.
There are varying degrees of rookie hazing. For example, a common practice around NFL training camps is to have the rookies sing their former school’s fight song during dinner. Other teams partake in creative head shaving, which brought us the awesome that was Tim Tebow’s Friar Tuck look.
Others keep it simple, and have the rooks carry the veteran’s pads. Dez Bryant doesn’t approve.
The Eagles may be getting subtle, yet irritatingly effective. Their veterans are calling the rookies by an entirely incorrect name, and doing so in a convincing fashion. It’s a sort of guerrilla hazing, because if he’s respectful of the elders veterans as any rookie should be, he may be hesitant to correct the mistake. And just like that the opportunity to make the correction in a quiet manner that’s not socially awkward has passed, and the rookie may continue to be called by a name that isn’t his name at all for a comically long period. Very advanced stuff.
Mind games, man. NFL locker rooms are not a place for the weak.
LeSean McCoy has been calling Matt Barkley “Mark.” Thought that was his name, until reporters corrected him. “He never said anything.”
I’m not sure if I’ve written this once, twice, or 19 times over the past few days, but we’re still in that lowly May period between the draft and the beginning of OTAs. Sure, there’s always something going on in NFL land, and at worst I can just make stuff up (#journalism). But during these trying times it’s always nice to have a little slice of awesome to get us through the darkness.
Lately, we’ve done even better than that, as we’ve been able to deliver you a sort of daily morning brew of awesome. Yesterday it was the urgent breaking news of Von Miller becoming the league leader in chicken tattoos. That man is passionate about his chickens, and any player who starts a poultry operation as an offseason hobby is a friend of mine.
Now I give you this: Shawne Merriman could soon be the most feared ninja in America.
But this is important, honest. NFL players put permanent artistic ink on their skin often, especially during these dreary offseason months when they have little else to do other than that, and hunt whales with harpoons. Broncos defensive end Von Miller is an ink connoisseur of sorts, but his interest is very specific.
Or at least it is sometimes. Honestly, I’m reaching to explain a thing that can only partly be explained. Whatever, we know this: the guy really likes chickens, which is why his offseason hobby of choice is, well, chickens. To be exact, 38 chickens that he’ll raise on a recently purchased eight-acre property which he hopes will grow into a poultry operation.
Yes, he’s rather passionate about his chickens. That doesn’t explain his previous tattoo filled with randomness, but it definitely explains this…
Coming to us by way of KSK, that’s Miller’s latest tat that he tweeted out last night. He’s already named it “Chicken Fred”, which is presumably one of his chicken minions he’s become close to, and we’ll therefore never ever be able to find him on our plates.
That comes to us by way of Kendall Langford’s teammate and fellow Rams defensive lineman Chris Long, who adds only this observation: “wow“.
With his 9.5 career sacks, Langford is more of a run-stuffing presence, and thus he likely won’t ever be invited to Hawaii. But he’s done enough to remain in the NFL and call football his job for five years while being paid a fair sum (he’s due $5 million next year, and he signed a four-year deal worth $24 million last March).
So naturally, a physically gifted young man has chosen to live the high life and buy himself some nice things while his NFL dream is still existing. And really, what else could possibly say dream livin’ like sparkly shoes with spikes?
I remember a simpler time when our shoes had air pumps, and they were the best thing ever created…
We get it, Jacksonville. You love you some Tim Tebow.
He grew up in the area, went to high school in the area, and was a college star and a Heisman winner in the area.
But now he’s left the area and he’s a discarded third string quarterback who’s wanted by no one. Sure, Blaine Gabbert probably isn’t the long-term answer for the Jaguars at the most important offensive position. But then a quarterback with a wonky throwing motion that leads to a wobbly ball and a career completion percentage of less than 50 percent is the answer?
Whatever, I won’t try to win that fight anymore. Tebow isn’t going to Jacksonville because two men whose opinions on the matter carry a whole lot of weight (David Caldwell and Shad Khan) have said they have no interest in paying him for his below average services. So instead of routinely spiraling into some discussion of logic (of which there is little in favor of Tebow) every time central Florida advocates for their messiah, let’s just embrace the everlasting comedy.
So bring us your letters to the president, and especially bring us this…
That’s John Morgan (from Morgan and Morgan), and he’s an important looking and sounding Florida lawyer guy who is well versed in both the power of winning, and the power of narratives. He cites many flawed facts regarding Tebow’s time in Denver while showing us a sea of teal seats at a Jaguars game…in the fourth quarter, with the home side down 31-14.
Morgan may truly believe what he says, but his real genius lies in capitalizing on the power of fleeting Internet fame. He pounced on the NFL topic of the day — one that’s generated passionate local opinion, which is highly important for his cause (hint: his cause is hustling and making money) — and he’s given guys at keyboards (*looks around, eats more breakfast Doritos*) a reason to post his pre-paid advocacy.
He doesn’t care if we mock and laugh. We’ve now been briefly entertained in early May, and John Morgan (from Morgan and Morgan) is making straight bank.