I really don't want to do this, but people have been asking for it. Here it is. My take on the Mantei Teo thing. I know there's an apostrophe that goes in there somewhere, whatever. Before I get into my opinion, I would like to ask the world in general for a little compassion. I mean, hasn't everyone at one time made up a story about the girl you hooked up from when you were on vacation last summer in Canada? I'm sure the other linebackers were busting his stones about being a virgin and... hey, the kid is only human. He's Mormon for Pete's sake. The difference is that we didn't have to explain it to the press. It's hard enough convincing your 14 year old friends about your French-Canadian love affair, let alone some real hardcore media types. Hey, that leads me to my opinion on the whole thing!
So... First an admission. I didn't care about poor Mantei's girlfriend when I thought she was real. I watch sports for one reason, to watch human beings pit themselves against one another and see who is best. Along the way, I decided I preferred to watch one group of human beings succeed over another. I, on the other hand, do not want to get to know them. I enjoy steak. I have never once had the urge to meet the farmer, the butcher or the chef who prepared it. I know it's delicious when it gets to my mouth. OK, maybe I would like to meet them, but it wouldn't be to learn about their private life. It would be to know how they got such wonderful marbling or achieved the perfect sear. I know this example is getting out of hand, but are you starting to see my point? When did sports become soap operas? Do you want to know who is at fault here? (I'm laughing right now, because I know some of you already see this coming)
That's right. Bob Freakin' Costas. It's not bad enough that he is the biggest know-it-all that has ever existed, he began the part of Olympics coverage that has made the whole thing unwatchable: the personal interest story. Yawn! Who cares that little Sally grew up in the middle of nowhere Sasqatoon (she's the girl from Canada I was telling you about earlier) had to be driven 400 miles every morning because that's where the nearest shooting range was, and that her grandmother died so the whole town rallied and took shifts to drive her to biathlon practice. All I want to see is her ability to fire a rifle while on skis. Is that too much to ask? That I can watch sports and not know everyone's sappy little back story. If this football season was made more exciting for you because the middle linebacker's grandmother and girlfriend died, I think that you don't understand sports. Or at least you don't watch them for the same reasons that I do. I get no joy out of a stranger's personal tragedy or his personal triumphs. Just because you put it on TV, does not mean that I am personally involved.
Alright, this is turning into a post I already wrote, so I'm going to leave it at that.