Thursday, April 9, 2009

6 comments Bill Has Entered the Simmons Zone

You may ask yourself, "Gosh, I wonder what the Simmons Zone is...that doesn't sound like something that is real."

The Simmons Zone is when a reader can know exactly what a writer is going to write about before you even read what that writer has written. Yet you still have to read what he/she writes because it irritates you so much that no matter the topic of the column, halfway through the column you feel like you have read it before. No matter how many times you read the crap that person has written, you know that person is going to continue writing the same thing over and over again, and you are never going to stop reading. You only read for those brief times when the writer does something different and then you celebrate that and continue reading his later columns and get irritated again.

Now you may ask yourself, "That sounds like something bengoodfella completely made up and he is trying to pass it off as something factual. Wouldn't it just be easier just to say that a writer writes the same thing over and over again but you can't stop reading, rather than giving this occurrence a name and going through the whole motions of having to explain it?"

Yes it would...In something similarly related, Bill Simmons thinks Alex Rodriguez has reached the Tyson Zone. It's real though, just check Bill's wikipedia page (which I am not going to link because it is like linking to the Church of Scientology's web is the same thing to me). Look for a mailbag a month from now with his SimmonsClones telling him other athletes who have reached the Tyson Zone. Bill could have written this entirely (not all together bad) column without mentioning the Tyson Zone, and he only does mention it once, but that phrase is like a code word for the SimmonsClones to send in mail relating about other athletes who have reached the Tyson Zone...then those athletes get included on his wikipedia page and the brand recognition of Bill Simmons has been increased. Bill is a smart man. He would not dare do one column without being self referential.

A friend asked me this question last week: How many consecutive columns could I extract from Alex Rodriguez?

My final answer: 10.

That would be about 30 under the record set by Wallace Matthews who, if I remember correctly, wrote 40 straight columns about A-Rod in early February to mid-March.

No modern athlete brings more to the idea table. He plays in New York for a team that stopped making the World Series as soon as he arrived.

Which was, again, completely his fault.

He's our highest-paid athlete in a tanking economy.

Depends on what metric you use. I would say he is highest paid in salary, yes, but overall he is not. I just did what is called "research." Bill must have meant highest paid in salary.

I don't know if A-Rod is the most interesting athlete either. I think A-Rod is kind of boring to be honest. Despite the fact I write about him weekly. I blame that on the fact the MSM is fascinated by him and his purple lips.

He's the star client of this generation's most despised agent.

So is the vastly "underrated" Manny Ramirez. To me, Manny is much more interesting than Alex Rodriguez.

We love to question clutch; he's notorious for coming through in small moments and choking in big ones.

I have never heard about this before. Though he did pretty well in the 2004 postseason.

We love "what ifs?" and he's provided two classics: What if that trade to Boston had happened, and what if the 2004 Yanks had finished that sweep at Fenway and A-Rod had become a playoff hero?

Shocking to me that Bill's "what ifs" for A-Rod both had an impact on the Boston Red Sox. It's like Bill's world revolves around them and thinks everyone else's world does as well. The "what if" about the A-Rod trade to Boston is valid but I sometimes think "what if" A-Rod had signed with the Seattle Mariners in 2001 instead of the Texas Rangers or "what if" the Yankees had not offered him a contract two years ago after he opted out? Who the hell would he be playing for now?

I hate "what if" games but if A-Rod had become a playoff hero in 2004, doesn't that mean Bill's previous comment about coming up small in big situations is not completely true? Simply because the Yankees lost also doesn't mean A-Rod came up small...I am just frustrating myself now trying to be logical.

A-Rod has even shattered the Tyson Zone: when an athlete's life turns so bizarre you become numb to any twist in his story.

I love completely made up terms like this! Unfortunately Bill is the only one who has been numb to any twist in A-Rod's story. The mainstream media was in shock when he admitted to using steroids, started dating Madonna, and they act like they are in shock when he does anything.

I am not sure how you can claim to be numb to any twist in a player's story and then claim to be able to write 10 consecutive columns about that player. If you are numb to any twist, it would not be that interesting to you, therefore columns would be hard to write. At least I would think so.

This wasn't the first time he seemed to unite a team simply by disappearing: It happened when he left Seattle (the Mariners jumped from 91 W's to 116) and Texas (71 to 89). As the theory goes, the never-ending circus that surrounds A-Rod -- his constant craving for attention multiplied by the nonstop media focus -- eventually overwhelms teammates and affects their play.

The Yankees are currently 0-2 going on 0-3. I really doubt this theory. If you are in New York, everything is a big story, so players should be able to get used to it after a while.

There's only one problem with the theory: It's not true.

Thank God Bill doesn't believe this. Though he still believes firmly in ubuntu.

He's simply a strange guy, not someone you'd want to drive cross-country with, for sure. But he's not a bad guy.

I would argue a bad guy is better to have on a team than a strange guy. At least you know what the bad guy is thinking. The strange guy...not so much. You never bring your kids around those guys.

Now explain this to me: How did teams "miraculously" succeed with every player in the previous paragraph? Everett won a ring with the White Sox. Kent and Bonds came within bullpen collapses of winning one of their own.

They played on good teams and clubhouse chemistry is not overrated but it certainly doesn't matter when a team has a lot of talent? That would be the reason I would give.

A famous goofball like Manny won two rings, played on 10 playoff teams and (very, very secretly) compiled one of the most successful résumés in baseball history.

Not secretly. Not secretly at all. Shut up about this. Everyone knows Manny is one of the greatest RH hitters of all time. He is not underrated simply because you want him to be underrated. There is no fair measurement of whether someone is underrated or not, but given the amount of media coverage, respect he gets from pitchers, and the amount of money he is being paid...Manny Ramirez is not underrated nor doing anything secretly that involves hitting a baseball.

Look, we love to romanticize clubhouse chemistry, mainly because we don't understand it, but also because it's a story line with legs. These guys didn't win because they were good, they won because they got along! They lifted one another, looked out for one another! They were a team! You know, the "Hoosiers" model.

Simmonsologists know that Bill loves to speak for everyone and how they are thinking. "We" don't love to romanticize clubhouse chemistry. Bill loves to romanticize it. He believes if guys are high fiving and getting along with each other it makes for a better team. Look for any article he has written about the Red Sox in the past or what he wrote about the Boston Celtics team last year. He believes this "team chemistry makes a better team shit." "We" don't.

Just because Bill is dumb enough to believe shit like this, doesn't mean everyone else does it. He just loves to speak for everyone else and how they feel or think. It drives me crazy.

If everyone is pulling for one another, fantastic. You can even win a division that way -- good karma invariably leads to goofy bounces and luck.

Exactly. Bill believes this shit. He thinks he is the fucking Buddha of sportswriting.

Throw in three titles in Oakland and Reggie Jackson -- the biggest clubhouse cancer of his generation -- won five rings in seven years. Which makes me think baseball chemistry is more overrated than Tim Burton.

But remember, you can still win a division with good karma. So tip your waitresses and give money to homeless men on the street because the next groundball up the middle might hit the pitcher's mound and go to the shortstop to start a double play. That is pure fact this can happen.

Clubhouse chemistry? It's just hocus pocus witchcraft baloney.

I will even go this far: There are undeniable positives to having one antisocial wild card in any close-knit environment. You know that one grating guy in your dorm hall or in your office? Don't you like bitching about him? You lob grenades at him as soon as he leaves the room. He's your running joke, an easy target. But he's also a galvanizing force, one of the few things that bring everyone else together: a mutual contempt for one human being that won't go away. You're stuck with him, so you make the best of it -- by belittling him.

Or as a normal person who is able to express his/her feelings by not comparing it to something else in the world or a person who does not have to meet a word count for a weak column might say..........sometimes making fun of or hating someone else can bring us all together.

It took me 13 words to say what it took Bill 7 sentences to say.

Every group needs an outcast just like every columnist needs a go-to guy for his column.

Jay Mariotti's go-to-guy who he belittles when he needs a column? The entire human race.

I won't write 10 A-Rod columns, but I could, and maybe that's all that matters.

Bill writing 10 columns about A-Rod would take nearly a month for him to do at the pace he writes. Maybe his numbness from A-Rod being in the Tyson Zone would wear off by then.


AJ said...

I think we should start a movement to email Bill every day and see if we can get into his next mailbag...that way we may be able to figure out once and for all if those emails are in fact from actual readers.

I'm sure we can come up with topics that will almost gurantee us a spot in there too...

Something about Sports Czar...any Boston question...

Or we could ask him if so and so is approaching the Tyson Zone...John Daly comes to mind after he's been spotted trying to sell stuff outside Augusta.

Bengoodfella said...

I think Martin has sent Bill some emails and he has never gotten in the mailbag. I think it was because he sent "hater emails" but still. I sent one a long time ago. I would send an email but I would have to make it seem like I was a SimmonsClone so I could get in the mailbag and then I would know they were real.

I will think about it and post if I think of anything. That should be a challenge actually for Friday...I could completely steal that from FJMariotti just for this situation. A competition to choose the best 3 Simmons emails that could get sent out with the official BoTB stamp of approval (let's be honest anyone can send a question, they don't need my approval) and the winner gets absolutely nothing...perhaps a jumbo size box of goldfish. I wonder if anyone would participate?

Daly would be a good one to use. I think the Tyson Zone and a Sports Czar question or a semi-comical story about a friend being in the Tyson Zone in reference to dating women or saying things or doing mean things to women. That could work...maybe. Bill seems sufficiently misogonystic to post something like that.

The Casey said...

You would have to ask him who would go on the Tyson Zone Mount Rushmore. Tyson & Dennis Rodman are givens, I think. Daly, A-Rod, Manny, Carl Everett, Barrett Robbins, Pacman, TO, and I'm probably leaving off some obvious Boston-area player that he'll bring up would be the other options.

Or, you could ask him to add the A-Rod "Hey, Who's That Stud In the Mirror" Face to the Pantheon of Faces.

I feel kind of dirty now.

Bengoodfella said...

The only Boston area athlete I could think of that would be added to the Tyson Zone is Manny Ramirez. Maybe there is someone I am not thinking of. I read what you said and thought, "that would be really pathetic if I wrote that to him, he would never publish that." Then I immediately thought, "wait a minute, that is exactly what he wants in his mailbags."

I think a Mount Rushmore of Tyson Zone would be a good one. If I could think of a shorter name for the A-Rod face I think that would be a great submission. I thought about the "I would rather be looking in the mirror at myself" Face but that is longer than your idea.

I don't need encouragement to do this but I would love to get posted to see if they are real mail questions or not. I baited him with a chat question one time and he answered it. It was like Christmas for me, none of my friends thought I was clever though and didn't really get that I was mocking him.

Martin said...

Ha, that's a good topic for the next mailbag. As with much that Simmons does, the mailbags back in the day could be interesting, but now have become an inside joke wraped in a self reference presented by a sycophant.

The Adenhart situation should cause Brian Cashman to grab Joba by the balls and make him stare at the remains of the car (which is just totaled) until the idea of drunk driving gets through his thick skull. And someone should go kick Leonard Little in the balls, jsut cause.

On a baseball note about it, as a fan of the Angel's you feel stomach punched. This was a kid fans had been following for the last few years, had been a name mentioned in various trade rumors, and finally got his chance this year to take a spot in the rotation. It's jsut very sad.

Bengoodfella said...

I did think about going through Bill's archive and trying to see what some of his older work looked like. I just felt like I was picking on him at that point. Not that he doesn't always deserve it...

The death of Adenhart is really sad because he was a talented pitcher and he pitched so well last night. I am sure he was a great human as well, but I do know he could pitch very well. It stinks this happened after he got a spot in the rotation...well and it stinks that it happened overall.

I know he was requested by the Braves for Tex last year and the Angels turned them down. I wish the Braves had gotten him and Kotchman, that would have been nice.

I am always going to be for kicking Leonard Little in the balls. He is my personal whipping boy.