I loved watching Walter Cronkite as I was growing up. I don’t know, maybe it was just because my dad would make it home from work just in time to sit down together and watch the news before quickly eating dinner and getting back up to the church for the rest of the night. But his voice was calming. Rock solid. When watching footage of him reporting on JFK’s assassination, we can see he keeps control of the newscast the entire time until the official announcement comes in the President Kennedy is dead. His pause of disbelief is poignant and makes me love him more. His school boy excitement when he announced the lift off of Apollo 11 and moon walk shows his love for reporting. It’s awesome. By the way, here it is…
…watch it and remember how amazing it really was.
We don’t have anything like him, haven’t for quite some time. I like Tom Brokaw. Dan Rather was ok, a bit melodramatic but clearly a smart man. Peter Jennings was good. Again, solid. He was probably the best since Cronkite. Brian Williams is a tool. I just can’t get past the smarmy half grin and white tanning goggles marks around his eyes. Dude, make up. Get some. He comes off so clearly full of himself and loves (as to modern day journalists) to make things about him instead of what he is supposed to be reading off the teleprompter. Yuck. In times of Breaking News, I go to Drudge.com. I don’t want to hear it from anyone, I’ll read it. The problem is, there is no longer breaking news. CNN fixed that for us where “breaking news” is happening 24-7. Boring.
But I woke up this morning to Breaking News! “The rumors are true, WSM (World’s Strongest Man) will be early this year. March 22 in Los Angeles…” Yes. We know. The competitors announced weeks ago that they’ve been invited (yes, invited. All the Giant’s live qualifiers that were scheduled to QUALIFY for WSM that folks have been preparing for in hopes of QUALIFYING for the WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP OF STRONGMAN are now stating that qualifications will apply to 2015 WSM. Goodie.) So 9 hours ago, the promoters (by promoters, I mean producers. There is nothing done to promote the WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP of this sport. A complete and utter fail) announced their breaking news that WSM will be in a week and a half. This gives ALL of the fans of Strongman plenty of time to get vacation, get travel plans, and hot step it all the way to LA to cheer on their favorite. What? It doesn’t? You mean not EVERYBODY can drop EVERYTHING and react in a few weeks to go and see their hero’s of sport?
Nope. But who cares. It’s not aboot the fans anyway. It’s about the athletes.
Yeah, I lol’d too when I wrote that.
The athletes who are weeks out from The Arnold and had already committed to others to show up at their contests including the Brits who get to hop on a plane with only enough time to down some anti-inflammatory’s and get to America days after the British Open Championship contest. But hey, at least there’s a better chance of no one being poisoned in LA like in China last year so there’s that. Ok, I take it back, the athletes ARE being taken care of (and if anyone throws a temper tantrum THIS WSM about getting real food, there’s sure to be an In-N-Out down the street. Triple/Triple’s for the room!) Score. Of course this will all make for good summer TV and that’s what’s important.
Whut? It’s not? Cuz no one has paid attention to this whole Polar Vortex thing of ours and doesn’t realize that we’ve been locked indoors for the past 7 months with, what looks like, another month of it to deal with and we may actually want to BE OUTSIDE every single day we can instead of inside watching TV? Oh wait, they only show a few minutes from each heat of each event anyway. We can TIVO it and wait for a rainy couple of hours and the whole thing is done.
My comment to their breaking news?
Juli U’ilani Peterson Groundbreaking announcement. The titanic sank too, feel free to share that when you’re ready. We’ll pretend to be surprised.
Because that’s just what they do. Promote your sport as poorly as possible; treat your athletes like absolute crap; show absolutely no respect to your fans; and show absolutely no respect to others trying to promote and grow your sport. Check, check, yup, and double check. Well done.
That said, we always support our friends and athletes. We are cheering big time for Big Loz; Lil Bjorn; and always my favorite (that I’m not marrying anyway) Big Z. We’ll send strong thoughts and best wishes for EVERYONE to walk away doing their best and staying healthy.
But as for the promoters? I dunno, is ‘suck it’ too strong? Well, that’s ok. We like strong here.
The gods have fled, I know. My sense is the gods have always been essentially absent. I do not believe human beings have played games or sports from the beginning merely to summon or to please or to appease the gods. If anthropologists and historians believe that, it is because they believe whatever they have been able to recover about what humankind told the gods humankind was doing. I believe we have played games, and watched games, to imitate the gods, to become godlike in our worship of eachother and, through those moments of transmutation, to know for an instant what the gods know.
A. Bartlett Giamatti