Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead-Tired of Brett Favre
We realize we're obligated by some unofficial Football Column Credo to write about the ailing shoulder of the NFL's dithering Prince of Denmark, about his impending surgery and What It All Means. (It means #4 is going to play and, therefore, Favre v. Cutler will have two shots at Out-Takes's inaugural "We Don't Want ANYONE to Win" Bowl.) And we get that we're supposed to spend more time on Minnesota's too-clever-by-half brain trust - Childress and Zygi Wilf are acting so coy at this point that they may as well don geisha-wear and giggle behind a dragon-patterned fan. And, yes, we feel the pressure to devote column inches to Cheesehead-flavored woe and Favre's tattered legacy. (Lady-with-a-beard documentarian Ken Burns unearthed Civil War maps that were in better shape.) Our guess, though, is that you're as sick of reading about Favre as we are of writing about him. And honestly, Out-Takes doesn't have the stomach to "go all Cutler" on this one, so let's just cut to the chase with...
THE TOP 10 THINGS WE'RE LESS SICK OF THAN BRETT FAVRE:
Number 10...JULIUS PEPPERS and where he's going to play next year. (Hint: It's somewhere directly North of South Carolina.)
Number 9.....SWINE FLU-related school closings. Everyone needs to dial down the hysteria and take a breath. Wait - God! - not while you're standing next to that kid!
Number 8....ROBIN WILLIAMS force-feeding stand-up into his movie roles. (For the record, we have no problem with Good Morning, Vietnam *since his shtick was salient to the plot. And we'd say we have no problem with *Patch Adams, either, but that wouldn't be accurate and, frankly, our heads might explode, at which point we'd need medical attention, possibly in the form of a doctor with tons of heart, a bright red nose, and the misguided, white-hot certainty that big shoes = "funny" and that "funny" = healthy. No thanks, Garp-in-a-blinking-bow-tie. Pass the Advil and beep that House dude.)
Number 7....Good old ROGER GOODELL floating bad new ideas (U.K. Super Bowl, 18 regular season games, four-day drafts). Roger, please, for the love of all that's holy - the NFL is raking in money, don't go all Gary Bettman on us. You'll wind up with a franchise in freakin' Columbus. Having said that, we still find you less tiresome than you-know-who, not to mention...
Number 6....SPASTIC HIPSTERS who gasp when we say, "We don't TWITTER" and invariably follow it up with a knowing glance to their fellow Twits and this bit of condescension: "Technically, it's called TWEETING." (Nothing, by the way, is "technically called tweeting." Just sayin'.)
Number 5....Canine Nemesis and PETA Poster Child, MICHAEL VICK. More sickened by him, true, but more sick of him? Let's just say it's hard to get sick of a trainwreck that comes stocked with phrases like "the director of the Humane Society and Vick had a sit-down at Leavenworth."
Number 4....That SUSAN BOYLE YOUTUBE everyone keeps e-mailing us. (Enough. We get it. Homely people can sing, too. Isn't that amazing?!)
Number 3....Folks who think American Idol runner-up ("runner-up" - we just threw up in our mouth a little) ADAM LAMBERT "just yells the whole time." You don't know what you're talking about. Seriously. But congrats on taking a stand on that whole "I don't like his black nail-polish!" issue. And yet, despite the contempt in which we justifiably hold you and your utter lack of taste and judgment, we STILL are less sick of you people than we are of the pride of Kiln, Mississippi.
Number 2.... JAMES HARRISON and his bizarre theory on White House visits: "If you want to see the Pittsburgh Steelers, invite us when we don't win the Super Bowl. As far as I'm concerned, they would've invited Arizona if they had won." Also as far as James is concerned: Friendly's would only make him a Fribble if he gave them money, and the Celts would've played LeBron in the Conference Finals had they scored more points than the Magic in Game 7. It boggles the mind, this man's jack-ass capacity. On the other hand, we appreciate him inspiring a future Out-Takes featurette, "As Far as James Harrison is Concerned..." Look for it. But let's move on to...
...the number one thing(s) we're less sick of than Brett Favre:
All the LAW & ORDERS * all the *CSI's *DATELINE: NBC *multiplied by 24-Hour Cable News CORPORATE BAILOUTS to the power of OCTO-MOM meets SEACREST.
Best Week(ly Awards) Ever!
TRADE OF THE WEEK:Just when you thought the Broncos made a good deal in sending prima donna 8-game winner JAY CUTLER to the windy city for a bevy of draft picks, and just when you thought the Patriots sent MATT CASSEL to KC for nothing but a chance to go one-for-two when it comes to drafting guys named CHUNG, along comes ESPN, trading in color-man TONY KORNHEISER (what color is "grating," exactly?) for everyone's favorite grimacing boy wonder, JON "CHUCKY" GRUDEN. Out-Takes loves this move almost as much as we love CRIS COLLINSWORTH taking over on Sunday Night for - as our dog Lola might put it - "That Video Game Man." NFL viewing in '09 just got smarter. Twice.
SWAGGERLICIOUS QUOTE OF THE WEEK: "A Jet is fearless, ferocious. He's a guy that's going to fly to the football, not back down from anybody. If you don't think you can live up to it...they'll kindly escort you to the nearest airport." That's BART SCOTT, who continues to go boldly where no Jet has gone before, pushing the Rex Ryan "We like us, we *really * like us!" meme to new heights. (That sound you hear is a stampede of Trekkie-like posters at J-E-T-S fan-sites all over the web, hurrying home to change their Mark "Hollywood" Sanchez Underoos.)
NON-SWAGGERLICIOUS QUOTE OF THE WEEK: From Rams GM BILLY DEVANEY, who, asked how much interest he and former Giants Defensive Coordinator (now Rams head coach) STEVE SPAGNUOLO have in former Giants self-inflicted wide receiver PLAXICO BURRESS, spat out this bare bones answer: "No interest. None." Attaboy, Billy. Less is more.
GEORGE STEINBRENNER-BILLY MARTIN DUO OF THE WEEK: ANDRE SMITH and his hired-fired-rehired agent, ALVIN KEELS. Turns out the pre-draft axing of Keels by the offensive line prospect-slash-Cool Ranch-Dorito-phile was all for show. Despite going AWOL at the Combine and topless at his Pro Day - all under Keels's astute direction - Mr. Smith-and-Wessonality is dumping PRIORITY SPORTS, whose credibility helped push him back into the top 10, and reuniting with his once-and-future agent.
Speaking of Andre the giant and his obvious Dolly Parton issues, who's got "Monday" in the "When will Maxim ask him to pose for next month's cover" pool?
~ On Wednesday, Miami paved the way for Out-Takes to write the following sentence with total veracity, if not a straight face: "THE DOLPHINS have partnered with KANGAROO MEDIA to install handheld wireless devices at LAND SHARK STADIUM." Swear to God, we're not making this up. Dolphins, Kangaroo, Land Shark. Meanwhile, Freshman Bio students in the Sunshine State are growing increasingly perplexed. And not just those FSU morons.
~ In the midst of threatening a SHELDON BROWN-like hold-out, Cleveland return specialist (and NFL Legacy) JOSH CRIBBS spun this tired old yarn: "Contracts are one-sided in favor of the team, yet we as players are told to honor our contracts without the team honoring them." Hey, Josh - you and your compatriots collectively bargained those rules into effect. If you want to be ticked off at someone, start with your union reps. And if you get a chance, have fellow members Tim Couch and David Boston give us a shout. Some owners want their bonus-money back.
~ COMCAST and NFL Network have, at long last, come to an agreement, which will provide all parties in the NFL with an important and stabilizing set of parameters. We felt it warranted a mention since it's not often a story comes along that makes us feel simultaneously really psyched and really bored.
~ In light of the ill-timed retirements of Colts offensive coordinator TOM MOORE and offensive line coach HOWARD MUDD, it's worth harkening back to the frantic hysteria that accompanied the exodus of New England assistants Weis, Crennel and McDaniels in recent off-seasons. The sky in Indy, apparently, doesn't fall. (Probably something to do with the dome.)
~ Yes, we're aware that HBO, NFL Films and the CINCINNATI BENGALS will be collaborating on the cable network's mildly popular series, Hard Knocks. Out-Takes was a bit thrown by the sheer perfection of this story, its purely harmonic coming together, like the cast of The Godfather and the end of The Usual Suspects. We plan on offering up our own translation of this Godsend next week. One bold prediction:
OCHOCINCO may just angle for face-time.
~ Just when you thought all the news out of Texas was tainted by the hypocrisy of hick-flavored jingoism going out on a hay-ride with the threat of Secession, Dallas Cowboys special teams coach JOE DECAMILLIS says, Whoa, Nelly! Less than a month after surgery to repair fractured vertebrae in his neck, suffered in the practice-bubble collapse, Camillis returned to the field this week, armed with a bullhorn and two sides of tough-as-nails. Well done, sir. Welcome back.
In a related story, Out-Takes fave MICHAEL IRVIN once again overcame his cartoonishly insane fashion sense to do good in this world, helping raise $140K for injured Cowboys scout RICH BEHM & FAMILY. Irvin and Spike TV, working together on the Hall of Famer's reality show 4th and Long, donated considerable chunks of change, as did guests attending the premiere episode of the series. It airs Monday nights at 10 PM on Spike. We implore you to watch it. (So you can tell us how it is.)
- John Cockrell is a screenwriter, whose other work has run the gamut from "Sesame Street Parents Magazine" to Playboy TV's "The Weekend Flash." (He figures everything else is pretty much in-between.)"*