The Blog Squad

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Bad Newz Sports

For crying out loud, what’s going on in sports? Michael Vick. Barry Bonds. Gambling referee. Has there ever been a worse time in American sports history? (And, yes, that's hypothetical. No doubt that those with longer memories could recount other scandalous eras.)

I’m sure you all have read the stories and know most of the details, but I’d like to bring up a few points that left me crosseyed.

Michael Vick: How did this mess become public? If you remember, Vick’s cousin, Davon Boddie, was busted for distribution of marijuana and possession with intent to distribute. A search warrant was issued based on suspicion after the arrest.

Now we all know Boddie lived in the Surry County house Vick owned and what authorities found there.

But the eyebrow-raising thing to me is that in the federal indictment for dogfighting, Boddie was not listed. Why?

He lived there, after all. That’s where the activity took place. Why was Boddie not named with Vick and the other three who were indicted? What sound does a canary make?

Barry Bonds: Word is that Patrick Arnold, inventor of “the clear,” told HBO Sports' Bob Costas that Bonds knew he was taking steroids. But at the same time, the chemist says he never met Bonds.

Man, I just wish someone would tell the truth. Maybe it would be better when Bonds breaks the record and then goes away.

Gambling referee. His name is Tim Donaghy, and he could go down as the most notorious sports figure in history. Even worse than Shoeless Joe Jackson or Pete Rose.

The stunning thing about this sickening situation is that Donaghy earned a good salary. The Associated Press reported he made $260,000 last year. I’m sure it’s a different world than the one I live in, but how can you get in deep with the mob making that kind of coin? Plus he’s a referee who works less than 200 hours a year! You gotta be some kind of stupid to screw up a gig like that.

In light of all the filth, there is something that reminds me that sports still can be good. Cal Ripken and Tony Gwynn will be inducted into the Hall of Fame this weekend. They are two of the classiest athletes of my generation.

OUT AT HOME: I visited my father and brother in Northern Virginia last weekend, and the three of us moved seven logs that were six feet long and about two feet (my dad claims they are only a foot) thick. How we moved them, I don’t have any clue. But we did He-Man the logs several feet out of the way.

So a few hours later, as we filled ourselves with white rice and five-spice beef at our favorite Szechuan restaurant, I felt a paralyzing pain. My back. My aching back.
“That’s why I told you to use your legs more,” my dad said, offering me jasmine tea but no sympathy.

I left the restaurant stiff, walking like if I sneezed, I might have an accident. Arriving costumers must have wondered, "What the hell did he eat?"
It’s been several days now, and my back is no better. I really should go see a doctor. My lawn needs mowing, and other chores are piling up.

This latest incident just reminds me that I’m getting old. Because nothing says “old man” more than me scrunched over, holding my lower back with both hands and asking my wife and daughter to wait up.

VIDEO OF THE DAY: You’ve heard of the Rain Man, now meet Stephen Wilshire. He’s perhaps the most amazing of all savants. His nickname is “The Living Camera.” This demonstration is truly remarkable. —Gage Harter


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