Saturday, July 18, 2009

12 comments The Non-Sports Guy Non-Sports Mail Bag

Bill Simmons is a tricky guy. He calls himself the Sports Guy and then does mail bags where sports are only an ancillary topic where he focuses on more important issues like how in love with him his SimmonsClones are, what is happening on the Bachelorette, and what wild and crazy television shows he and his readers can make up. He claims to talk about sports, but doesn't always do that, especially in the mail bags. As always the Boston Non-Sports Guy doesn't let us down.

Note: Since this is a weekend post and I have 45 minutes to get this up before I leave. I feel an incredibly amount of pressure. That also means I won't be able to immediately respond to anyone who feels the need to inform me in the comments Bill is an entertainer, so I should lay off him. He is on a sports web site and calls himself "The Sports Guy." That's all I have to say about that.

Q: After hearing you and JackO talk about how unfunny athletes really are in a recent podcast, doesn't there need to be a new ratings scale known as "Athlete Funny"? I derived this after I listened to a Cubs fan tell me how funny Ryan Dempster is. Just because you can crack up people on "Cold Pizza" with your Dr. Evil impression (i.e., an impression of an impression) does not make you funny.-- Chad, Los Angeles

"Great idea. I look for any reason to not talk about sports since I work for ESPN. Let's put together an overly long list to make it look like I did a lot of work. Done and done."

6.0 -- Formulaically funny

See Chad the Reader's story about Dempster in the original question. This is the most common group: basically 5.0 guys, only with just enough savvy to possibly parlay this pseudo-funniness into a post-retirement TV career that will inevitably annoy you. Examples: Tony Siragusa, John Salley, Michael Strahan, Scot Pollard, Steve Lyons, Scot Pollard again.

He left off someone on this one. Bill Simmons. He should be at the very beginning/top of this list.

8.0 -- Sneaky Funny

Athletes who can be legitimately funny behind the scenes (usually stars or superstars) but do an excellent job of hiding this side publicly. Usually it seeps out later in their careers. Example: Michael Jordan, Larry Bird, Dwyane Wade, CC Sabathia, Peyton Manning, Steve Nash, Greg Oden.

Really? You thought Larry Bird would not be ranked overly high on this list? I have been a Larry Bird fan for a long time, I am having trouble remembering exactly something funny he has said that doesn't involve a McDonald's commercial.

(Note: Kevin Garnett is apparently in this category, but I didn't include him because you wouldn't have believed me. Just know that I have heard between eight to 10 fantastically funny KG stories, and he might be the Redd Foxx of his generation.)

You would never believe the second hand stories of how funny KG is Bill has heard. You may not believe it because Bill hasn't heard KG say something funny, but trust me KG did say something least that's what Bill heard. Jimmy Kimmel and Adam Corolla one time said that Kevin Garnett said something funny once...or make that 8 to 10 times. You know, Bill used to work on television. He's a star!

Q: Is nobody willing to acknowledge the fact that Ivan Rodriguez and many of his 1990s Rangers teammates were all juicing while President Bush was their owner? That's a story right there.-- Johnny, New York

Johnny from New York. I hope you are fucking kidding me and this is a joke. I will assume this is a joke because you wrote this to be published in Bill Simmons' mail bag, most people who write in are just making jokes to get published, Bill's loyal readers would barely have enough intelligence to think of this without his help at some point, and the fact it is incredibly stupid. Otherwise if I am incorrect and it is serious, may God have mercy on your soul. This is dumb to connect these two events. You really think Bush was that interested of an owner to know what went on in the locker room?

Q: I'm 18 and just graduated high school. When my college decisions came in in April, I narrowed down my choices to Dartmouth and Princeton and had no idea what to do. Whether it's teenage indecision or my relative laziness, the only thing I could think of was your pure hatred for Princeton. So I chose Dartmouth. You, Bill Simmons, made the biggest decision I have ever made. Most likely, you will be responsible for whatever shenanigans I go through in life. Just wanted to let you know and say thanks.-- Sam, New York

Johnny from New York, I apologize, I should have saved my anger for this man. Sam from New York. Someone who is stupid enough to write Bill and write such a dumb letter stands no chance of making it into any Ivy League school. Please do not lie to Bill in the future to get him to love you. Bill is not your father, you don't need his love or acceptance.

SG: I couldn't be prouder. To think, I saved you from a terminal case of insufferable "dooshdom." Now I want to offer my services as the deciding vote for anyone's college choice. Wouldn't you watch a "Judge Judy"-type show where high school seniors went on, told a "Judge" (in this case, me) a little bit about themselves, rattled off the colleges that accepted them, and then Judge Simmons made the decision?

"Wouldn't you watch a show where I was the star and the entire point of the show was to massage my massive ego? I would!"

Q: I need an official ruling from you. Me and my buddy Lawson have been arguing over the proper title for our obsession with the glory that is hard-throwing Red Sox reliever Daniel Bard. He suggested Bardoner and I countered with Bardner. Recently we have reached an agreement on Bard-on. What do you think?-- Ethan S., Boston

So now it would be correct for me to say: It is very pathetic that Bill's SimmonsClones readers have a Bard-on for Bill and constantly write in to his mail bag with their "creative" ideas so he will publish them and the writer of the mail will feel cool, while Bill gets a Papelboner knowing that there are people who think he is as important and funny as he does.

Q: My girlfriend has been making me watch "The Bachelorette" and I'm not even ashamed. Isn't it easily as good as any other Monday night comedy? Plus, there's Jillian and the unending internal debate in my head as to whether she's hot or not. Literally every shot of her evokes a different reaction from me. I'm amazed at how intriguing the show is.-- Mike B. Brighton, Mass.

Women! They make you watch the craziest shows!

Why is it that all of Bill's readers only have one television in their house? They always say their girlfriend/wife "makes them" watch the show. Let me give Mike from Massachusetts a little tip. If the girl is on a television show to get a date, she's not hot and it is either the makeup that makes her look good or the careful editing to not let on that she is a complete utter nut job and will probably murder you in your sleep (No, that wasn't a reference to Gatti or McNair).

Q: Simmons, you amaze me. You are either the embodiment of the American Dream or a sure sign of Armageddon. You write for ESPN, yet you break no stories, have no sources, offer little analysis. Instead you write superfluous pieces of fluff that are only your half-baked opinion, offer no proof and constantly write about the NBA, the Red Sox and Pats to the exclusion of anything else of substance. To top it off, you seem as mature as a horny, pimply 14-year-old. I don't get it.-- Rick D, Saint Joseph, Mo.

I enjoyed this email. What does Bill have to say?

SG: That was this month's winner of the Backhanded Compliment Award, as well as a great quote for the back of "The Book of Basketball:" "You are either the embodiment of the American Dream or a sure sign of Armageddon."

Bill takes this opportunity to pimp his new book coming out and provide a link so you can go buy it. Seriously he mentions the book all the time now. Is he that afraid people won't buy it?

I have no problem with him mentioning it, but always providing a link to it so everyone can go buy it...that's a little needy.

Then Bill goes into a list (shocking, I know, he makes a list to take up space) about why he thinks soccer will be popular in America by 2010. It is already popular, just with a niche crowd. I have to say I think hockey will make a comeback before soccer. I may be wrong but hockey is faster paced and there are more teams in American for people to cheer for than in soccer. Again, I may be wrong.

Q: I need your expertise here. I was lying in bed with my wife one night and she caught me staring at her chest. My wife was blessed with large breasts (which I am thankful for) and she was wearing my Giants Super Bowl championship sweatshirt (that was not meant as a dig). When she asked me what I was staring at, I said, "What? You know I love the Giants." I instantly realized the wonderful double meaning of what I said. Can you think of another team that would have worked as well in this situation? The best I can come up with is the Twins.-- Dave, New York

What Dave fails to mention is that his wife weighs 250 pounds and that is why she is so blessed in her breastial area.

(Is making fun of a reader's wife out of bounds? It feels that way to me, so if it is then I am sorry)

The reason I say this is because I can't believe an attractive woman with large breasts would marry a man who spent a decent amount of time trying to think of a double meaning for breasts using sports teams, and then writing into Bill Simmons about it.

Q: I'm taking Sports Leadership taught by Charley Casserly at Georgetown next fall. What percentage of the class is going to be on "How to draft a defensive end from N.C. State even when a running back from USC is available"?-- Rawiri, Washington

There is no way you can rip Charley Casserly for that draft pick of Mario Williams. Actually, if you look it up, Casserly had a great draft his last year in Houston with Daniels, Ryans and Williams. Now Bill's readers are so desperate to make fun of a coach or GM like Bill does they are reaching to do so.

I bet 30 kids will be dumb enough to sign up?" Noooooooooooooo! But failed GM Charley Casserly gets to teach kids at Georgetown, the school I wanted to attend that brutally rejected me in 1988?

I have no opinion on Casserly, but didn't he also build the Redskins teams in the late 80's and 90's with Joe Gibbs? If so, he did a good job in the pre-salary cap era doing that. I don't think that would qualify him as a bad GM.

Q: Thought of this after Michael Jackson's death: Which famous singer would have dominated "American Idol" the most had he/she started his/her career as a contestant on the show? I thought MJ around the "Off the Wall" era, but then realized he would not have been eligible because of his Jackson 5 fame. So who? Please don't tell me John Mayer, circa 2005.-- Cliff, Portland, Ore.

SG: Anyone non-threatening with undeniable talent who can play guitar, play the piano or belt out tunes is going to succeed on "Idol." Young Alicia Keys would have crushed "Idol." Same for the dude from Maroon 5.

I am going to go ahead and call Bill a douche because the lead singer of Maroon 5 is horrible live, almost as horrible as the entire band.

I feel like this was the idea that kick-started the band Maroon5. "I have an idea, let's start a band where most the studio recordings released require harmony vocals and then have no one in the band be able to hit the harmonies live...then we can get a lead singer who sucks live, but women love him. Success will follow us!"

SG: You're right. I've written before about how death can be a good career move (Kurt Cobain, Chris Farley, Heath Ledger, etc.)

I only include this because I don't think Bill has a point with Heath Ledger. His career did not take off because he passed away, his career was already on an arc up because of The Dark Knight and other movies he had done (there was one where he got Oscar Buzz and it was with Abby Cornish...I only have 10 minutes left so I can't look it up) and his death really only served to destroy what momentum he had built up. Imagine how much Ledger would have gotten for The Dark Knight sequel. His career was already on the upswing, I feel like his death actually ruined that and he did not get more popular in death. I don't like to argue pop culture, but Bill is wrong about this one.

(FYI: Don't send me any "What about Bill Simmons right before his basketball book comes out?" e-mails. You'll feel bad if I get run over by an 18-wheeler or something. You will. Don't do it. I'm warning you! Speaking of books …)

Another plug for his book. Where's the link?

Then his readers start suggesting shows to be on Spike TV...and yes, it is as bad as it sounds.

Q: I'm in Hawaii for my fifth anniversary and reading your live draft article and had a thought. When they bring polygamy back, will you be my second wife? My current wife could handle all the sex, cooking, cleaning, and you could just have the responsibility of watching sports with me all day. Sound good?-- Spencer, Utah

Why does Bill publish these types of letters? They have nothing to do with sports or anything. They just go to show his infatuation with himself and trying to make others see just how wonderful everyone thinks he is. I have said it 100 times before and I will say it 100 more times. Bill's ego is massive. I bet he thinks he is too good of a writer to be at ESPN.

Q: I'm already excited enough when you write a new column. But your new picture? Your bright eyes gazing deep into my face. Your intense glare penetrating into my soul. I not only feel touched by your beautiful words … but also by the inner Bill Simmons. Something more than the sports columnist, some ungraspable, intangible feeling. I am ready to read.-- Neal R., Oak Park, Ill.

I know we are getting to the "Yup. These are my readers" part but is there a need to print this? Other than the reasons stated above of course. Bill can't just have one email that is odd, he always has to lead up to that email to show how much people love him. It used to be one email at the end, but now he feels the need to lead up to it with other "crazy" SimmonsClones emails.

His "Yup. There are my readers" person is a guy who read Bill's 20 Worst Fans at a Game column and threw a guy's cell phone away when that guy broke one of the rules, then got kicked out of the ball park at Pawtucket. This guy is a Red Sox fan of course. Why wouldn't he be? Bill's goal is to make everyone in the world hate the Boston Red Sox by furthering stereotypes of them as frat boy, fun loving morons who revel in following Bill's "rules" even if it means harsh consequences.

These are Bill's readers, and you all wonder why I make fun of them constantly.


Martin said...

Again Simmons with the Heath Ledger "death as a good career move" idea. What the hell is wrong with this guy? Ledger had done Brokeback Mountain and Dark Knight, gaining huge praise from critics and the Hollywood establishment for the work. He had his whole future in front of him, death did nothing for him.

Simmons and Jack-o talking about how unfunny other people are. Wow. The fact that Simmons, who has almost ZERO interaction with athletes, is busy telling me how under the radar funny jordan and Bird are is migraine inducing. Really Bill, how do you know they are funny behind the scenes? Spend a lot of time at your house for the first weekend of the NCAA Tourney? Ya'll are on a Vent channel while watching the Sox games from your own houses? Seriously, Jordan comes across as a mostly humorless jackass who can't take a joke. I can't imagine he can be funny except at the expense of other people. Of course I have nothing to base this off of except I was once in a club that Jordan was at, and I see him on TV. You know, the same criteria Bill has.

KentAllard said...

Georgetown rejected Simmons? At last, I have something good to say about Georgetown.

Bengoodfella said...

I haven't ever gotten the whole "Heath Ledger" got helped by his death thing either. He was in several movies and had both Hollywood cred and serious actor cred, his death pretty much derailed what his entire career could have been. I don't get it.

I love also how Bill knows players are funny from watching them on television. I guess he IS a fan but I don't really care about that because I am not sure you can pass along stories about how funny someone is second hand like it is fact. Maybe it is just me but it seems a bit conceited to do that.

Jeremy Conlin said...

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I hope you all check it out and enjoy it, and maybe someday, my lifelong dream of being ridiculed by BGF in a 5000 word post will be achieved.

AJ said...

How about instead of a list of pros that may or may not be funny outside of about a list of pros who may or may not be complete jackass's outside of sports who live a double life? You know, pros that appear all high and mighty yet outside of the sports world are losers? I could think of a bunch to fill out a list...

I agree with Martin on the Jordan thing, he comes off as a humorless ass to me as does Bird. Have you heard Bird on the radio? You know who comes off as a funny guy, John Smoltz. Was he listed? I don't know, i really didnt read this thing.

I agree with you guys on the Ledger thing. For a guy that thinks he is the pop culture icon, he sure as hell knows nothing about movies that aren't Teen Wolf or Rocky.

I loved the fact he published a great email about what an idiot he is, yet feels no need to respond other then saying it was a backhanded complament, which it wasnt at all.

I really can't believe there are people out there that write some of this things to him, like the "will you marry me even though I'm a guy" emails. Please. No one is writing those...and if they are, why publish those instead of actual sports questions? I agree with you Ben, it's cuz of his ego. But I really think its just him writing himself emails.

By the way, did you guys know he has a book coming out? Hurry up and pre-order it now before they run out of copies. Something tells me that wont be much of an issue where I live though. And you can go ahead and take Detroit off your list of places that you MAY come for a book signing, no one would show up.

AJ said...

And Rick Reily has the worst article (is that possible?) ever on ESPN right now...

Wow! I hope you get to this one.

Bengoodfella said...

Ouch AJ, I can imagine a list of players who lead double lives and are really jackasses would be a pretty long and libelous list. I am not saying I would not want to read it, I am saying I think there would be some lawsuits that could follow this list.

John Smoltz for me became less funny and more whiny about 5 years ago. He is a good interview if he likes you though. Michael Jordan is really not that funny, I have heard stories about him like Bill has heard stories about Larry Bird, except I don't try to pass it off as a fact.

The Ledger thing is just ignorant in my mind. Ledger was clearly on the way up and it all crashed because of his death.

I joke a lot, or try to, but I am not joking when I say those emails where his readers are drooling all over him just feed his massive ego. He wants us all to see how great other people believe he is. He wants us all to see how hard he has worked to get such a dedicated fan base. Such hubris in that man.

Does Detroit pretty much not like Simmons? I noticed it was not on there. He would probably do pretty well here, everyone seems to still hate the Yankees and Cowboys more than the Red Sox and Patriots.

Which Reilly column? The one with the 10 best places to visit? I haven't read it yet but I have it bookmarked.

AJ said...

Ya something about 10 sporting events you most see or some nonsense...all you need to know is the Tour De France is on there...yes, you MOST see bike riders!!!

He had Detroit on his maybe list...he should just take it off though. I'm not saying that hate him or something, i've just never heard anyone talk about him or his articles. Plus I believe he still rips on Detroit for its "riots" following some other cities dont have that issue.

Bengoodfella said...

I am planning on reading the article at lunch today and seeing if there is anything interesting in it or not. I will definitely read it based on your recommendation though.

I have to say I can't believe he would be accepted very well in Detroit, just since he is a Celtics fan. I could be wrong though. He has fans everywhere.

AJ said...

Correction, he has guys-who-want-to-marry-him everywhere.

Bengoodfella said...

They claim to want to marry him and that is just very, very disturbing to me.

Anonymous said...

dude ur a douchebag. Obviously u read all of simmons columns and at least like them enough to spend forever blogging about them. and all the quotes about fat wives and shit, you definitly dont have a girlfriend or a wife because all you do is sit at your house and try to diss all kinds of people all day. I really wished someone would take the time to talk about how u r the biggest faggot in the world and you have absolutely no clue what your talking about when it comes to sports.