Off Topic: How I Almost Became a Spurs Fan

Late on Sunday night, I finally turned off the television as the San Antonio Spurs won their fifth title in fifteen years, beating the vaunted superfriends Miami Heat (Chris Bosh was Aqua Man). I felt pride, not because I was a Spurs fan (Pelicans, bitches: KAW KAW), but because I was among the vast majority of basketball fans who root against the Heat because it’s the fun thing to do. Watching the Spurs play amazing team basketball, some of the best I’ve seen in over a decade, was incredibly enjoyable to me. And the celebration was great, because everyone loves a good celebration.

So I turn my TV off, feeling happy, and I browse to the New Orleans Pelicans fan forum, I look in the forum for someone to acknowledge what I did, how much fun it is to watch a well-constructed team win. I hoped to find someone else who thought that with enough good work, good coaching, and luck, eventually our Pels could do the same thing.

Instead, I found a thread asking if we should sign Heat free agent Michael Beasley. Continue reading

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I Hate The Offseason, But Probably Not As Much As Josh Freeman Does

It’s been a couple of weeks since I took a look at NFL news. At this point, you’re mostly going to see reports of injuries, how rookies look in training camp, and veteran players complaining about attention rookies receive. But a few notable stories have crept their way into this offseason wasteland, and I figured we’d acknowledge them. Welcome to my favorite part of every football dead-time, I HATE THE OFFSEASON!

Done in the style of Ben’s award-winning* Monday Morning Jerkface. All headlines come courtesy of ESPN’s sensationalist informative NFL Front Page.

Think Of How Many Headphones He Can Buy Continue reading

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If You Want Sexual Harassment Charges To Be Taken Seriously, You Probably Shouldn’t Dick Shame

This morning, I came across what must be a fake lawsuit against Johnny Manziel. There’s a lot to take in here, and SBNation thinks that it’s probably completely bogus. In fact, according to this most recent update, HLN has confirmed that their Samantha Schracher did not file this suit. And I know a few people have had some laughs with the lawsuit, because it talks about Johnny Brownball’s dick size, and how he cheated on his exams, and a bunch of random things thrown in that make it look like it was written by Attorney Elle Woods in the second act of Legally Blonde (before, you know, she accidentally becomes an awesome lawyer at the end). And sure, overall it is a little funny, if only because it’s so hard to believe.

But there is a dark undercurrent to this developing story. This lawsuit, even if it is immediately thrown out and labeled as a joke, will harm people. Even if it doesn’t hurt Manziel’s reputation at all (and if it isn’t true, it shouldn’t), it hurts women across the world who have been harassed and assaulted. The over-the-top wording in the lawsuit makes America laugh, when lawsuits of this nature should make America contemplate, reflect, and stand up against sexual harassment. In addition, the ridiculous claims in this lawsuit will lead many people to victim-blaming, which is a dangerous road to travel.

Sexual harassment isn’t funny. Sending someone unwanted penis pictures is a violation, and if you feel violated, it isn’t funny. And that’s why this lawsuit is harmful. Because even though sexual harassment isn’t funny, the bogus claims of what Manziel did are intended to be funny. The constant shaming of Manziel’s alleged penis size, the name dropping of other celebrities, the hot dog bun/ho-ho-ho moment…these are all designed to attack Manziel in a way that will cause people to laugh. And judging from responses in comments, it’s working. The focus shifts to the amusing things that Manziel did, rather than the act of sending unsolicited penis pictures to a woman.

And that’s a problem. Because if Manziel actually did these things, even the Christmas Eve one, it’s unwanted and offensive, regardless of how funny people may find it. I wouldn’t want anyone sending me dick picks with a hot dog bun wrapped around it. If it happened to me, I’d tell my friends and they’d laugh. But they didn’t have to see the penis.  And you can call me sensitive, but there are plenty of women and men who would not laugh if they were barraged by dick pics.

The logical conclusion that most people will make when reading the lawsuit is that it is borderline defamatory because of all of the comments about dick length. I made the same conclusion when I read it. The lawsuit did not read like a woman who was actually disgusted or psychologically damaged. It read like a woman who wanted to hurt someone. And naturally, when we see that, we tend to side with the defendant. But even if these allegations are 100% false, and we are correct for blaming her in this situation, it creates an environment where it is okay to blame the victim. It becomes one more example where we question the veracity of a sexual harassment claim. “Remember when that person pretended to be a famous person and erroneously sued another famous person? Clearly that means this allegation is false as well.” That thought process will certainly happen at some point over the next year, as obviously shortsighted as it is. Cases like these should be treated individually, but every time a hoax like this becomes public, it leads people to believe that women are crying wolf.

I’m sure within the next few days, even the next few hours, we will find out that this entire thing was an elaborate hoax. And people will go about their day. Johnny Manziel will go to football practice. The plaintiff will come up with another way to get attention. And America will shrug its shoulders and say, “I told you it wasn’t true.”

But damage will have been done. And the next time someone alleges sexual harassment against a celebrity, this will be in people’s minds. And sexual harassment charges might not be taken seriously, even if the charge is real. If this is a hoax, we need to recognize it as a one-time thing, and not a tendency of women filing harassment claims.

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Meet Colt Layerla, Tight End and Sandy Hook Truther

Great hands, and exceptional feet insertion into mouth ability

Great hands, and exceptional feet insertion into mouth ability

It came through the news wire early Monday evening that the Green Bay Packers had signed undrafted rookie tight end Colt Lyerla.

What’s the big deal, right? Hundreds of undrafted rookies are signed every year during the build-up to the season.

Well, this isn’t exactly your standard ho-hum signing. Continue reading

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Monday Morning Jerkface: Draft Edition

For the fans of thirty-one teams across the league, this weekend was a time of hope and new beginnings. For the fans of the Raiders, this weekend was a time to kneel by your bed and pray you didn’t make any glaring mistakes. And for everyone, this weekend was the last football fix before the preseason kicks up again in August. We can’t make that wonderful time come any faster, but we can look at this weekend, celebrate some good moves, and mock some bad ones (not you this time, Raiders! The prayers worked!)

This is Monday Morning Jerkface, NFL Draft edition. Continue reading

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