Monday, February 3, 2014

4 comments Oh Look, Another Mailbag From Bill Simmons...

But it's not the Super Bowl mailbag. It's the mailbag Bill did before he took a week off from writing a Friday column only to come back and do another mailbag for the Super Bowl. I've stated multiple times Bill Simmons needs to quit writing for Grantland/ESPN. Of course, his ego can't stand the idea of giving something up and he requires the constant reinforcement from his SimmonsClones that he is the smartest guy in the room. So he won't give up writing, even though he has seemingly already done so. There have been too many mailbags and too many columns based on Bill's own failed gambling prowess of late. I'm not usually nostalgic for "the good old days," but Bill used to write columns that were at worst interesting to read, even if they involved the same jokes. At this point, the brand that is Bill Simmons has begun to eat itself. His columns have delved into a regurgitation of his previous ideas and ideas started in his mailbags. There is very little originality or new ideas that aren't somewhat based off old ideas he has had. His writing has become very insular and self-referential in that aspect. Of course his idiot minion fans still consistently read what he writes and think he's the greatest writer since---well they just think he's the greatest writer ever. Bill's columns have nothing new, it's just another extension of the old extension of Bill's brand. So what happens is Bill takes the easy road and puts out mailbags so he can be reminded by his readers of how original and creative they believe him to be.

Can you think of an NFL Championship Sunday more worthy of a mega-mailbag? Me neither. Screw the foreplay, let’s get right to it.

The foreplay might be the only interesting part of a Bill Simmons mailbag.

As always, these are actual emails from actual readers.

Sure, they are. I completely believe this. I want to believe these are real emails from real readers, but I shudder to think there is such a large group of people who appear to be idolize Bill so much that I don't want to think these are real emails.

Q: You know what this weekend is right? It’s the G.O.A.T. Bowl between Brady and Manning. If Brady beats Manning and plays spoiler to Evil Manning’s sensational season, can the Brady v. Manning debate finally be over? Manning can’t be the best ever if he is 1-3 against Brady in AFC championship games and 4-11 overall. It’s the final nail in the coffin of Manning’s playoff legacy. Isn’t beating Brady crucial for his career credentials?
—Peter, Saratoga Springs

It's always fun to read about someone following the media's narrative like it's their job to do so. The media lays out breadcrumbs to get those who don't care to think for themselves to follow a narrative and a few people eagerly follow these breadcrumbs.

After that 2006 comeback, I wrote that he only needed a Super Bowl victory “to enter the John Elway Zone — loosely translated to mean, ‘All right, here’s my ring, now you guys can all shut the hell up and leave me alone.’” And that’s how it played out. You win the ring, everyone shuts their trap.

I'm feeling like Bill is pretty wrong about this. Of course, because Bill can't fathom the world outside of his own head he thinks he is right. Unfortunately, even Bill's own colleagues like Gregg Easterbrook and David Fleming haven't shut their trap. Even writers from Seattle point out that criticism of Manning hasn't stopped due to his postseason record not being stellar. Bill's perception is that everyone has shut their trap about Peyton Manning, but this isn't entirely true.

I don’t see us ever solving the Quarterback GOAT question — it’s not like basketball, where the best player in the Finals almost always wins.

I'll let someone else touch this one. I guess the perception of this statement's veracity depends on what "almost always" means and an argument over which player is the best on each team. I think the 2011 Heat and 2008 Lakers would like to argue this statement though.

Brady came within two plays of winning five Super Bowls and one first down in Indy of battling the immortal Rex Grossman in a sixth … but any fan of the 2001 Raiders, 2001 Rams, 2003 Panthers and 2011 Ravens would stomp their feet in disbelief if you played the “If only Brady had better luck!” card.

I wouldn't stomp my feet, but simply point out that Brady is one first down from a sixth Super Bowl and one bad officials call from still being in five Super Bowls. Also, how many times has a kicker kicked the ball out of bounds in the Super Bowl? Luck happens, but the universe tends to even things out.

And you can’t have the “Best QB” conversation without these five guys being involved: Brady, Manning, Montana, Elway and Unitas. (Every other candidate comes with a “But … ,” whether it’s Marino, Favre, Young, Bradshaw, Luckman, Graham, Baugh or whomever.)

I don’t think someone like Aaron Rodgers cares about being remembered as the GOAT; he just wants to win some titles, make some money, stay healthy and turn that list from five to six.

So if Aaron Rodgers wants to turn the "official" list (because it came from Bill and he is the supreme authority on these things of course) from five to six, then doesn't this mean Aaron Rodgers does care about being remembered as the GOAT? If he wants to win titles and be in the "Best QB" conversation, that has to mean Rodgers cares about being the GOAT.

When I called Brady about his “rivalry” with Manning in 2011, I gotta admit, it was mildly disappointing to find out that he didn’t care

This is your reminder from Bill Simmons that he has talked with Tom Brady before. He like knows Tom Brady you know. When Bill talked to Tom Brady, because he totally did, he found Brady didn't care. This is much like I don't care that Bill got to talk to Tom Brady, worked with Jimmy Kimmel, has talked with Bill Russell or any of the other famous athletes/celebrities that Bill seems to name-drop when he can.

Only one thing mattered to him: that playing Manning was always a challenge, something you couldn’t take lightly. That’s it. We want these guys to care about legacies and rivalries and all of that 24/7 talking head/sports fan/message board bullshit, but at least in football, you can’t think that way. They’re concentrating on staying healthy, outsmarting opponents, remembering playbooks, competing, working out, brainstorming … there’s just too much to do. That’s the reality.

I like how Bill is giving his readers a mini-lecture about how Manning and Brady don't care about the rivalry that fans want to see them have. The question from his reader didn't ask about this. It asked about the perception of Manning and Brady, but Bill couldn't resist giving his readers a mini-lecture about what Tom Brady really cares about since he talked to Tom Brady one time and he knows Brady doesn't care about a rivalry with Manning.

Bird and Magic clashed in three out of four NBA Finals, at the peak of their powers … and then it never happened again.

And these two basketball players are the only two superstars to ever meet each other in the playoffs to determine which team gets to move to the next round. 

Brady and Manning battled in three AFC playoff games in four years, right as they were hitting their primes … and then it never happened again. So this is cool. Everyone wins, I say.

Everyone wins, Bill says. 

Q: We need to be prepared for the very real possibility that the two teams playing in the Super Bowl will be representing the only two states that legalized marijuana. I think before we go any further, don’t we need to come up with a name ASAP? The best I could do is the Smoke-A-Bowl. I know you and your readers can do better.
—Scott M, Chicago, IL

SG: I narrowed it down to five choices that would definitely be sponsored by Taco Bell, Sour Patch Kids and Cheetos: The Weed Bowl, the 420 Bowl, the Pot Bowl, the Smoke-A-Bowl, or the Doobie Bowl. (Thinking.) Wait a second, why am I narrowing this down? What could possibly be better than the Doobie Bowl?!

None of those are particularly good, but the Smoke-A-Bowl is definitely better than the Doobie Bowl. Of course, Bill has to one-up his readers when it comes to being creative, so it shouldn't shock me that he thinks the Doobie Bowl is the better option.

Q: I’ve been amused by your “Aaron Hernandez coming in last place for Sportsman of the Year joke” and got to wondering what that list would actually look like. Here’s what I came up with before getting bored: 2013: Aaron Hernandez; 2012: Lance Armstrong; 2011: Jerry Sandusky; 2010: Ben Roethlisberger; 2009: Tiger Woods; 2008: Marvin Harrison; 2007: Michael Vick; 2006: Albert Haynesworth; 2005: ???; 2004: Ron “Melee” Artest. Also, nothing will ever top 1994 (OJ beating out Tanya Harding), but don’t sleep on 2007 when Vick’s runners-up included Tim Donaghy, Todd Bertuzzi, Pacman “Strip Clubs” Jones and Barry Bonds for breaking (Hank Aaron’s record). Finally, Ben Roethlisberger seems a little weak in 2010.  Is it possible Tiger Woods won back to back awards?  We found out about like 300 additional floozies that year!
—Jason, Harrison, NJ

SG: First — incredible email.

I feel like Jason from New Jersey got sexually aroused upon hearing that his idol and hero Bill Simmons thought this email was incredible. I'm not sure there is a higher honor that can be given to a SimmonsClone.

Q: If I had told you our best players in the most important win of the Pats season would be LeGarrette Blount and Jamie Collins, would you have actually believed it? And now we get Brady and Manning again??? This is easily the most extraordinary NFL season since Saving Private Ryan.
—Trent Chabot


"Fuck you, Trent. Let's talk about me."

Even more amazing: All four Round 2 favorites advanced for the first time since January 2005, and only a few days after I warned everyone, Whatever you do, don’t throw the favorites in a three-team tease BECAUSE YOU WILL GET BURNED. I’d like to meet the one guy who went against every piece of gambling advice I dispensed these past four months. Wait, check that — I’d like to fly to Kahua or St. Barts and check out that guy’s new beach house. 

While I appreciate the self-deprecation here, the fact Bill understands he is terrible at gambling won't stop him from writing three columns next NFL season about new gambling rules that he has pulled out of his ass. It's amazing to me that Bill can write "I'm so terrible at gambling, but look at my new hard-and-fast rules that will change next year about how to gamble on NFL games. I'm bad at it, but I'm an expert too" in his columns and at no point do his readers think maybe Bill makes these rules up as he goes along.

Also, Bill includes emails that end with "...since 'Saving Private Ryan'" as a reminder to us that his quote about how great "Lone Survivor" was is included in the advertisements for the movie. Bill tries to come across as self-deprecating but I know it's really just his way of reminding his readers one of his quotes from a movie review ended up in the advertisement for that movie.

Then, because Bill's mailbags are also cheap excuses to discuss his favorite teams at length he goes on about how what a great coach Bill Belichick is and how if the Patriots had won the Super Bowl how this would be Belichick's best coaching job ever.

Q: Gun to your head, is Johnny Football going to be great, average, or a bust if he goes #1 overall? I have a very strong ‘bust’ vibe, but I don’t know anything. Of course I’d argue that nobody really knows anything.
—Ian, New York

Great way to take a position Ian. You would argue that nobody can actually predict the future. Don't go too far out on that limb there Ian. You never know when someone will be able to predict the future, so never say "never."

Your best-case scenario: Starting at the combine in April, the experts start picking apart Johnny Football for being too short/too immature/too big of an injury risk. The league cools off on him. Just a little. But there’s no way he’s getting past the Vikings on draft night, right? Well, Houston (no. 1), Cleveland (no. 4) and Minnesota (no. 8) all pass on him for other QBs, an especially stinging sequence because one of those other QBs had the how-can-anyone-ever-become-a-famous-QB-with-this name of “Blake Bortles.” So Johnny unexpectedly falls out of the top 10, launching a Rodgers-like tailspin because nobody from no. 11 through no. 19 needs a QB. Arizona grabs him at no. 20, followed by a chastened Johnny Football dedicating himself to haunting every team that passed on him — à la Brady, Rodgers, Brees and Wilson before him.

There's no way Johnny Manziel will last to #20 in the draft. The whole idea of being too short isn't quite the problem it was over the past few years due to the success of Russell Wilson, not to mention NFL teams believe they can prevent injuries to a mobile quarterback by teaching him to slide or get out of bounds. Sure, Manziel falling in the draft would be a good thing for him but I really doubt he will fall that far. Maybe if he gets caught with a kilo of coke or does something stupid followed by a terrible Combine and workout day at Texas A&M he could fall, but other than that, he's going to be taken early in the NFL Draft in my opinion. I find it hard to believe too many teams are turned off by his frat boy exploits while at Texas A&M.

Q: The NFL’s version of Jose Canseco. That sentence should scare Roger Goodell to death. The discussion of concussions and life impacting injuries in the NFL is growing louder and will continue to do so as players continually become bigger, stronger, and faster. The NFL will love it as long as their game stays on top and rakes in money. More games? A team in London? Football on every Thursday? Whatever it takes. A former player so desperate for the limelight (and money) is going to burst this bubble. My bet for who that player is and when it will happen? Chad Johnson within the next five years. Who would you predict?
—Josh Hanson, Eau Claire

SG: If we’re using the Canseco model, it needs to be a troubled attention hog who can’t be taken seriously and has no problem making outlandish accusations, only he’s so troubled that nobody takes him seriously right away. It also needs to be someone shameless enough NOT to be afraid to break “The Code.” It has to be a big enough name. And it has to be someone who probably needs money, and may have even been imbalanced enough to (a) change his name to honor his uniform number, (b) change it back, and (c) propose to Evelyn the Gold Digger from Basketball Wives. So Chad Johnson checks every box here.

Isn't it amazing how Bill creates the criteria and then acts like he has proven something by stating that Chad Johnson fits the criteria? It's the typical move that Bill makes where he creates rules for something in order to prove himself correct. In this case, he is proving a reader correct, but given the fact it is Bill Simmons he of course can't allow Josh from Eau Claire to be the smartest guy in the room. Bill has to give his own suggestions as well.

Great pick. My runner-up choices: Tiki Barber, Terrell Owens, Aaron Hernandez.

And now Bill ignores that none of these players are imbalanced enough to do A through C and Owens/Barber probably don't need money. But hey, this is all a joke right (but it really isn't)? That's why Bill didn't follow his own criteria.

Q: Do you realize Michael Crabtree tore his Achilles on May 22nd 2013, and played a major role in an NFL playoff game on Jan 12 2014? That’s less than eight months! This yet again confirms my theory that the NFL runs sports, and produced the A-Rod suspension announcement and 60 Minutes piece strategically so people wouldn’t bring up Crabtree’s miraculous recovery.
—Matt Brady, Louisville

SG: But let’s keep sticking our heads in the sand with the current guys, then spending our outrage on retired baseball players trying to get into Cooperstown — while moaning How could we not have known? and all the other baloney from last week. You know, because God forbid some enterprising creatine guzzler affected the most broken institution in sports. Instead of caring about whether Mike Piazza’s back pimples should prevent him from getting a bronze plaque, shouldn’t we care about our current athletes (a) bending all realistic expectations of how a human body recovers from a traumatic injury, and (b) how they happen to be doing said bending?; and (c) in the case of football, bulking up to impossible sizes/speeds to cause even more of these injuries (that lead to more miraculous comebacks).

It pains me, but I do agree with Bill on this. I think it's interesting how there is all this concern for the baseball Hall of Fame and making sure guys from the PED era aren't allowed in the Hall of Fame, but the fact these athletes are bouncing back enormously quickly from injuries that require months of rehab doesn't seem to concern the NFL. I recognize medicine has gotten better, but a torn ACL is a torn ACL. There is only so quickly the body can recover from a torn ACL, but it seems like athletes (and especially NFL players) are coming back even more quickly every year.

Vonn returned to the slopes in September even though her recovering knee never felt right. She thought it felt unstable. A little wobbly, even. She kept pushing it … and in November, she crashed and tore her ACL. So long, Olympics. My friend emailed me shortly after: “Lindsey had the best resources in the world and couldn’t come back within a year. Turns our your theory was spot-on. At least in this case.” I don’t know if that’s right or wrong — we’re talking about a one-person sample size.

Of course a one person or one team sample size hasn't prevented Bill from making assumptions about something in the past, so I'm not sure why that would change in this situation. Even if Bill's point on this issue may have merit in my opinion, he's considered himself to be correct in different situations with a one person sample size. Bill tends to make rules up based on one event or what one person did and then tries to shoehorn more examples to fit these rules.

But had that February knee injury happened to any player on any of this weekend’s football teams, would they be “recovered” and playing this weekend? You tell me.

Skiing seems to be a lot harder on a person's knees as well. So I can see how Vonn returned and then the pressure put on her knee caused another ACL tear. Obviously NFL players use their knees, but anyone who has spent time skiing knows how hard a day on the slopes is on your knees and back. Imagine skiing everyday with the violence that Vonn trains at. I think that type of violence involved with skiing would be extremely hard on her knees and would explain how she tore her ACL again.

Q: To add more suspense to Sunday night’s game, what would make for a better halftime than the NFL announcing the results of every player’s drug test in the game? Couldn’t you see multiple Seahawks suspended for the second half, only to have their lawyers convince the NFL to overturn the rulings midway through the 4th quarter, allowing the players to return to the game. Even though your dream of seeing players pee in a cup won’t come true, this is the next best thing.
—Eddie Rein, Columbus

Wait, why is Bill's dream to see players pee in a cup? Is that really his dream, to watch a grown man pee in a cup? I feel like this is something Gregg Easterbrook would like to see, except he would want the player to be completely nude and peeing in the cup. Also, these are Bill's that should tell us something about Bill that is his reader thinks of this idea. And of course Bill loves this idea. It seems Bill has gone from "The voice of the fan" to "That annoying guy in your dorm who talks too loud and thinks he and his friends are much more hilarious than they actually are."

SG: Or, you could go this way — during every NFL playoff game, both teams nominate one player from the other team to pee in a cup. That way, they could discuss it in the pregame show — “Terry, which Niner would you pick to pee in the cup if you were Pete Carroll?” — then the halftime show would pretty much revolve around the two drug tests.

And as much as I disdain halftime shows and going back to the studio to hear the talking heads show highlights and discuss the game, I think I would prefer this rather than a halftime show consisting of two grown men peeing in a cup and then getting the results immediately.

Q: You on the cold: “Take it from a lifetime New Englander who spent the last 12 years in Southern California … ” Why didn’t you just say, “Take it from a SoCal sellout pussy”?
—Jack, Cleveland

SG: OK, I’m gonna put on a jacket.

Damn, Jack from Cleveland was a little chippy. I blame the Browns for his chippiness. Also, I like how Bill prints three (this was the last one) emails that are not kind to him. I have to say, it's a nice change of pace from the usual kiss-ass emails that Bill seems to get. Of course, Bill doesn't take the time to actually retort or point out why Brady would have won as many Super Bowls as Manning did if he (Brady) played for the Colts and Manning played for the Patriots. So I'm guessing he's going to concede that point as being true? I think this would be an interesting breakdown (of course Bill would screw it up) to look at in a column. I hate "what if's" but I'd like to see how biased Bill would be when comparing Manning as a Colt and Brady as a Patriot. Just for shits and giggles, even though I hate "what if's."

Q: I’m a die-hard 49er fan and my office mate likes to give me a hard time about my 49ers … especially Jim Harbaugh.

As I am prone to saying, if you tell us you are a "diehard" fan of a team then you are probably insecure or feel you need to prove your fandom for some reason.

Q: I opened up your latest write-up on the NFL playoffs to see what you had to say. As a Lions fan I started to read the Chiefs fan tale of woe and in my head was saying, “OH BOOOO-HOOOO” until I got to a certain line: ‘(Of the 32 NFL fan bases, only Vikings fans, Bills fans and Browns fans could fully identify with that email.)’
I was about to throw my laptop across the room until a wave of confusion hit me. Are the Lions seriously SO bad that Bill friggin Simmons forgot to even mention us? OR … Are the Lions so bad they have not had enough playoff heart-break to “identify” with the Chiefs fan?

SG: You should absolutely take it as a slight. I apologize. My honest explanation: I forgot to include the Lions, realized it after the column went up, then made the in-the-moment decision, “Well, it doesn’t matter, they haven’t had enough playoff heartbreak to identify with what happened to the Chiefs, anyway.”

And because we all know it's much worse to have heartbreak in the playoffs as opposed to being so terrible that your favorite team doesn't ever make the playoffs. Sure, that makes sense.

Then Bill begins bashing Jim Caldwell after his readers write in bashing Jim Caldwell as well. This is something I can get behind.

Q: I read every word you every write — including your NFL picks.

You need a life. Read a book, find a hobby, or find someone else to idolize. This is the saddest thing I have read all day.

I just couldn’t help but laugh when I got to the end of your Division Playoffs column this week right after you picked the Broncos to win by 20 — and saw your season record for this year. OMG, what a great country!  You totally sucked all season at picking games and yet I just read about 5,000 words from you on this weekend’s four games and hung on every frickin word. —Pete Nellius, Philadelphia

SG: That was the “Backhanded Compliment of the Month” for January.

Again, perhaps this should tell you something about the types of articles that you choose to read. Maybe find someone else to idolize and realize Bill is making shit up as he goes along.

Q: Roger Goodell said in an interview he’s in a fantasy league with his daughter. What do you think they named their team? I was thinking “18 Weeks” or “The Road to Hell is Paved With Goodell Intentions”?
—Dan, Endicott, NY

SG: Personally, I think he picked something super-vanilla and non-controversial like “Roger That” or “Roger’s Dodgers.” But that’s no fun. I loved this question so much that I opened it up to everyone who follows me on Facebook. Just when you thought this column couldn’t get lazier — that’s right, I’m answering reader emails with Facebook replies! Could I reach a point where I don’t even write this column myself? I say yes!

Seriously guys, Bill really, really wants to stop writing weekly columns. Just give him permission to do so. Don't have him turn into Peter King where he manages to makes his weekly column longer and longer, while also containing more material written by someone else. It's bad enough he does mailbags at least once a month, don't make Bill do entire columns consisting of mail he receives without responses from him. He's done it before under the guise of, "This column I wrote was so interesting a lot of people wrote into me, so here is a list of emails I received from people you don't know or care about," and he will do it again, but only more frequently if he has to.

Q: In baseball, specifically Moneyball, they learned that a walk is as good as a hit. ”He gets on Base!” We have not learned that in football. I am admittedly a Peyton Manning fan, and I get sick of hearing about his miserable playoff record. So I thought — why is not making the playoffs at all almost better for a QBs legacy than losing in Round 2 after going 13-3? Earning a first round bye should be considered just as good as winning a wild-card game — the result is the same. And not making the playoffs should be just considered just as bad as losing a wild-card or any other playoff game. Better to have loved and lost right? Ok, so when you figure missed playoffs and first round byes as losses and wins respectively, you get a TRUE PLAYOFF WIN percentage.

It is interesting what happens when you tell the whole story! Why don’t we use this stat?
—Micah Kormylo, Dallas

Quarterback Playoff Record Byes (W’s)/No Playoffs (L’s) True Playoff W-L True Playoff W%
Tom Brady 18-7 7-1 25-8 0.758
Joe Montana 16-7 8-2 24-9 0.727
Joe Flacco 9-4 1-0 10-4 0.714
Troy Aikman 11-4 4-4 15-8 0.652
Ben Roethlisberger 10-4 3-3 13-7 0.650
Steve Young 8-6 5-2 13-8 0.619
Eli Manning 8-3 1-3 9-6 0.600
John Elway 14-7 7-6 21-13 0.618
Jim Kelly 9-8 5-3 14-11 0.560
Aaron Rodgers 5-4 1-1 6-5 0.545
Peyton Manning 10-11 6-2 16-13 0.552
Donovan McNabb 9-7 3-4 12-11 0.522
Brett Favre 13-11 4-7 17-18 0.486
Drew Brees 6-5 2-6 8-11 0.421
Dan Marino 8-10 4-6 12-16 0.429
Phil Simms 6-4 2-5 8-9 0.471
Warren Moon 3-7 1-7 4-14 0.222

I have to admit this is interesting. There's nothing particularly wrong with it, other than it probably overvalues whether a quarterback's team was very good or not when awarding that quarterback a playoff win or loss. Aaron Rodgers doesn't have a long history, but he hasn't traditionally played with very strong defenses and so he is getting a loss for his team not making the playoffs when this isn't necessarily his fault. Of course, a quarterback could get a bye (and therefore a win) based on being in a weak division or because of the strength of his defense so perhaps it equals out. It's a fun use of numbers but it does come off as sort of contrived and inaccurate to me if the purpose is to get a quarterback's "true" playoff winning percentage. I don't think a quarterback should get a win for having a bye nor should he get a loss for his team not making the playoffs.

I think if the purpose is to get a quarterback's true playoff winning percentage there would have to be a better way of doing it without giving him wins or losses for games he didn't even participate in. Of course, because it makes Tom Brady look good Bill Simmons loves it. If this metric had Peyton Manning as having the highest career playoff winning percentage you can bet Bill would have pointed it may not make sense to give a quarterback a loss based on his team not making the playoffs or have some other argument against the use of the metric.

SG: That’s an early contender for Mailbag Email of the Year. You’re right — why don’t playoff byes ever get factored into playoff record? Even if we just said, “Brady is 18-7 in the playoffs with seven byes,” that information is so much more enlightening than “18-7.” But the concept of “true playoff percentage” is really good. And simple.

But the metric is also factoring in a loss or win for a game the quarterback never played in. I'm not sure if failing to make the playoffs should count against a quarterback's playoff winning percentage. It doesn't make complete sense to me.

Q: I can’t think of anyone more appropriate than you to answer this question...

You need a role model or perhaps just to find a life outside of worshiping a 40+ year old man with two children. Seriously, quit kissing Bill's ass. It won't make him love you.

Q: At what age does a man: 1) Realize he can’t drink like he used to, 2) Realize he can’t eat like he used to, 3) Realize he is more attracted to younger women than older, 4) Realize an athlete he has long hated is an all-time great and begins to respect the hell out of him? I just turned 26, and with Tom Brady on the verge of a sixth Super Bowl I think I have finally reached all four stages. Thanks bud!
—Eric, New Orleans

It varies for every man. Now go back to your Saints message board to talk about whether Rob Ryan will get a head coaching job after this upcoming season and how the Saints are always so overlooked and never get any respect.

SG: My answers: 33, 38, 31, 17.

Well of course Bill has exact answers for this question. After all, isn't Bill's experiences in the world the only ones that really count? Bill believes himself to be representative of every sports fan and now he's representative of every man. His ego isn't massive at all.

I say “17” for the last one because that’s the year (1987) when I began to begrudgingly respect how great Magic Johnson was. And that’s someone who, before the 1987 Finals, I probably would have tried to run over in my car if nobody was looking.

Well of course "17" is the answer to the question because that's when Bill started respecting Magic Johnson. Bill's experiences mirror and exceed the experiences of everyone else, mostly because Bill is incapable of understanding everything he sees and does isn't necessarily the greatest or most important experience. Why did Eric from New Orleans even ask these questions, other than to jerk off at the idea of getting his email into Bill's mailbag?

Also, you left out the following realization tipping points: (5) the age when you’re peeing in a urinal at a game next to a little kid and get jealous of the velocity of his pee stream (42); (6) the age when you fall asleep before midnight as you’re watching TV even if you’re not drunk or tired (40); (7) the age when farts stop being funny (never). 

And of course Bill can't allow this reader to post a question without him improving on the question in some way.

Regardless, I think we might be in range.

In range of crazy emails from Bill's overly-devoted readers. This hasn't gotten old after 10 years at all.

Q: Every afternoon when I roll out of bed, there are two things I need to do: Check out Grantland and poop. I always read Grantland on my phone while pooping, and my leg always ends up falling asleep. A couple of days ago, I’m reading your column, I get up, and I fall down immediately because my leg is fast asleep. I limp into the living room, fall down again, and then my girlfriend says “What the hell is the matter with you?” I tell her “I just read Bill Simmons’ column, and now I can’t walk.” She says “He must be one hell of a writer.”
—Bryan M, Brockport, NY

If Bryan is a real person then I would imagine this girlfriend is not a real person.

Then Bill does a short preview of the 49ers-Seahawks NFC Championship Game and a lengthy preview of the Patriots-Broncos game because he's always has been and always will be "The Boston Sports Guy" as opposed to ever being "The Sports Guy."

Now Bill calls it a day, skips a week of writing a column because he had to write the apology column for the "Dr. V Magical Putter" column and that was a good excuse to avoid the reality he is out of column ideas and doesn't want to write a column anyway.


Matthew Cleary said...

I wonder who the average Simmons fan is. I'm guessing a wannabe frat boy type. I still remember the idiot that used a Jim Caldwell doesn't blink line during a lecture on the Cuba Missile Crisis and getting kicked out of class.

Bengoodfella said...

I have no idea who the average fan is. Clearly it is someone who craves his acceptance, at least that's what it seems.

Someone used that line in class?

JBsptfn said...

What "Jim Caldwell doesn't blink" line? Someone used a Bill Simmons line in class? Oh, sweet Jesus make the Simmons worship stop.

Bengoodfella said...

JB, I'm just glad no one started a slow-clap for him. That would have been it for me.