Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Dark Day for Mankind

Tiger Woods has now joined Ben Roethlisberger, Phil Mickelson, Derek Jeter and Kevin Garnett as one of my least favorite athletes. Not because he cheated on his wife, I could personally care less about that, but because his extracurricular activities have lead to the creation of something that may cause me to hate the one thing I care mot about, sports.

The creation I speak of is TMZSports.com. Pardon me while I go puke like I just chugged a 26er of Jose Cuervo on an empty stomach.

That's right the popular celebrity gossip website and unofficial creation of Satan TMZ.com has decided it wants to get into sports.

Way to fuck everything up Tiger.

Why is this such a big deal you ask? This is such a big deal because I loathe everything TMZ stands for. I think people who read celebrity gossip magazines and visit celebrity gossip websites are trashy human beings who instead of living their own lives would rather live vicariously through famous people. The whole thing is just so sad.

The fact that Jon and Kate could make the cover of 25 different magazines simply because they are getting a divorce is pathetic. It speaks to everything that is wrong with North America today.

Now you might argue that I treat athletes the way other people treat celebrities and if that is your opinion then so be it but I tend to see the 2 very differently. The main difference is that I don't respect and admire athletes for their looks and I would never base a life decision around what an athlete says or does. I would never buy a magazine simply because someones face was on it and I would never care about what athletes do in their personal lives.

I respect and admire athletes for what they get paid to do, play sports. Once an athlete leaves the field/court/ice I lose my interest. If Derek Jeter wants to go bang super models and do lines of cocaine at some club in New York then good for him. I don't care and neither should anyone that isn't named Derek Jeter. That is his business. Now if it starts affecting his performance on the field then it become the Yankees business but never should it become the business of everyone in America.

People who love celebrities love them because they are famous. They put them up on a pedestal and try and emulate them in order to fill some void they have in their own lives. They feel like they have a right to know every little detail about somebody simply because that person is on the other side of a camera. Very few people love and admire actors and musicians for their actual work. They instead choose to obsess over celebrities for what they do when they aren't working. No one thinks the dude from Twilight is a good actor, as evidence by his lack of appearances in other movies, but every 14 year old girl loves him anyway.

That is the way I see it at least.

Now this twisted mindset is invading sports. Sports which were once only about what occurred on the field/court/ice now will be dissected like Jessica Simpson's weight problems.

Obviously the coverage of sports has evolved over the years as no longer are sports stories restricted to simply what happened during the game. Incidents that occur outside the game are starting to be covered with more frequency but that is because they affect what happens on the field. I don't like it but it is what it is.

For example if an athlete gets into legal trouble then it is usually covered by all the major outlets but there was always a boundary, or at least I feel like there is.

Maybe I am being naive about the whole thing. It may all come down to the way the information is presented. For instance Sports Center has never started like this, "Mike Fisher and Carrie Underwood tie the knot and we have all the juicy details. Then later in the show we will sit down with Derek Jeter and get his thoughts on Arod's breakup with Kate Hudson." This seems like the opening of the sports show from hell and yet with TMZSports.com coming out I feel like this may be the direction that sports is going.

I know sports isn't as pure as it once was, if it was ever pure in the first place, but I feel like it is still an area that is untouched by the sort of trash coverage that is so common in other aspects of society.

Think of it like a safe zone in a zombie movie. The outside world is being affected by this disease that turns them into blood sucking monsters that feed off the free will of the rich and the famous. Meanwhile sports is like that area that was quarantined early and managed to build a society void of the zombie bloodsuckers.

There is another reason this news bothered me so much and that reason is journalistic integrity. Since this whole Tiger story broke I have noticed that no one is really questioning these women that have come forward. It seems like all a woman has to do is step forward say she slept with Elldric and she gets on TV with no questions asked. Websites have been reporting things left and right and yet no one is fact checking to see if the sources are credible.

Since when has a stripper or a pornstar been a credible witness?

But because it is labeled "gossip" people don't have to have any accountability. They pass off all the info as rumor and therefore are not required to provide any sources or facts. This kind of stuff doesn't fly in the sports world but may become more common if trends continue.

Final analogy:

GEORGE: Ah you have no idea of the magnitude of this thing. If she is allowed to infiltrate this world, then George Costanza as you know him, Ceases to Exist!

You see, right now, I have Relationship George, but there is also Independent George. That's the George you know, the George you grew up with -- Movie George, Coffee shop George, Liar George, Bawdy George.

JERRY: I, I love that George.

GEORGE: Me Too! And he's Dying Jerry! If Relationship George walks through this door, he will Kill Independent George! A George, divided against itself, Cannot Stand!

It is the exact same for sports. If Perez Hilton or Nancy Grace walk through the door and enter the sports world then sports, as I know it, will cease to exist.

Damn you Tiger Woods! Damn you to hell!

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