… Somewhere in an old international celebrity home, Rula Lenska is welcoming Zinadine Zidane to “international stardom”…. Ron Artest sent him an atta boy …. Paris Hilton is ditching her son-of-a-mogul de jour for Earth’s latest Famous Bad Boy. …. And meanwhile at “The N&O” BobLee asks THE QUESTION no one could answer.
BobLee entered the Holy of Holies on Monday … The World HQ of “that damn N&O””. I got the full VIP treatment … a parking spot in the Reserved Lot and a name badge and an escort. The occasion was my first day on the N&O’s Front Page Committee. Each day this week I will meet with the section department heads to determine which stories will merit “front page” attention. It was tres cool.
There is a statue in the lobby of old man Josephus Daniels, the paper’s founder. He is, of course, holding a Go Tar Heels pennant and wearing a Kerry-Edwards t-shirt. There is a trophy case by the elevator containing “just one pair of tennis shoes”. I guess if you have to ask, you don’t need to know. I didn’t have to ask.
The N&O puts out a paper EVERY DAY … rain or shine … newsy or no news … and has for 100 years. Today was “a slow news day”. “Man Bites Dog” stories were about all there was. Each department suggests “the best it can come up with” and the front page editor sits at the head of the table and yawns.
I had to introduce myself. I noted my highest honor was receiving 136 F-bomb e-mails from angry Wuffies PLUS once being called “a MoFo” by the UNC Band Director’s wife. That was going to be the lead story until a sewer main broke in Clayton.
Two incidents of note occurred on Day One (TRUE STORY) … (1) a young (late 20s) AfrAmer girl was discussing a story about a new seatbelt law and said “I think OUR REGULAR READERS will be interested in this …” I could not resist. I interrupted to ask “who IS your REGULAR READER? What demographic profile do you use to define “regular N&O reader?’
I could not have made a bigger impact if I had mentioned I know a certain radio dude (which I do NOT intend to mention BTW). There was absolute silence. Apparently no one had ever thought about that. The yawning guy at the end of the table broke the silence with “You are.”
Like a cougar on a rabbit, I pounced. “Then I probably need to chat with the fella that has controlled your Op/Ed page for the past 100 years.”
Incident #2 … a nice young lady sitting next to me was the head of their website. I gave her a nice atta girl by saying “I check your website every morning but this morning’s paper is still lying in my driveway”. I inquired was that a trend they were watching. Again, I was apparently exploring uncharted waters.
I noticed a guy who looked like Dwight on The Office mumble “Is this guy going to be here ALL WEEK?”
My first impressions is that these are just gals and guys with “jobs” who go about them with the same level of enthusiasm most folks apply to their “job”. I saw no Woodward – Bernstein “save the world” passion among’em. … four more days to observe.
The suits who run World Soccer FINALLY figured it out. Want to attract American viewers. 1. Have young girls named Brandi take their clothes off … 2. Involve a “Spice Girl” or … 3. Have a bald dude go berzerko in front of billions of viewers.
Some angry bald dude named Zinadine Zidane (??) went muey loco on “the big stage” making soccer appealing to American couch potatoes for five minutes. I wonder if Zinadine is a Jr? Was his dad Zinadine Sr.?
While we pompous zenophobes may not appreciate soccer “like we are suppose to” (sez who?) we do enjoy oddball antics and loonies being loony. Some “VERY FAMOUS” French soccer dude named “Zinedine Zidane” met that requirement on Sunday.
Pele, Beckham, Mia Hamm, and … and … I’m sorry. VERY FAMOUS SOCCER PEOPLE is a short list for me? If you had asked me on Friday who/what is Zidane I would have guessed a new drug to cure warts.
Zidane is now an international superstar rivaling Paris Hilton, Rula Lenska, and Kevin Federline. Only real “baby boomers” will remember Rula Lenska. Conversly, NO “baby boomer” has a clue who Kevin Federline is.
I saw via “the Internet” that the World Cup finals between France and Italy was into overtime so I employed my NBA strategy … watch the last few minutes and see all you need to see. It worked. Just as I turned on my flat screen there was this angry bald dude headbutting a dude in another colored jersey in the chest.
I looked for a WWE Diva in stilettos carrying a folding chair but just saw an “official” hand “the VERY FAMOUS Zidane” a little red card. He took the little red card and disappeared into a dugout, not to return. Would Lou Pinella react that way if Augie Donatelli handed him “a little red card” in the middle of a temper tantrum at home plate.
Next thing you knew the two teams were doing “penalty kicks” to decide world domination in soccer. “They” are saying that was a poor way to decide such a BFD. Me, I thought it was the perfect way to decide it. Screw that four hours of running around and JUST do penalty kicks.
“The VERY FAMOUS Zidane” is like “the world’s greatest penalty kicker” and his team (France) lost by one errant penalty kick. Ya gotta believe somewhere on the docks of Marseilles someone in a beret has put out a contract on “the VERY FAMOUS Zidane”.
Apparently Zidane went berserko because the Italian guy called him “a dirty terrorist”. Is that the new international “epithet” … the dreaded “t” word? No doubt Ho #1 will add that one to her ever-evolving tale.
Zidane will make the rounds of Leno and Letterman and be mentioned as a replacement for Starr Jones on The View. By next week he will be a whozit in the Land of Baseball, Hot Dogs, Apple Pie and Chevrolets.
Running down “the World of Sunday Sports … Roger Federer won another Wimbledon against some “swarthy Spaniard” named Nydal. (Are all Spaniards “swarthy”?) Roger Federer could walk into any Target in America wearing an “I’m Roger Federer” t-shirt and not draw enough celebrity-watchers to fill a PT Cruiser. Like Pete Sampras, he is very good but very bland. But Pete was a Yank, not a Euro. It matters.
The women’s Wimbledon plate was won by some Euro-chick named Mauresmo who beat some other Euro-chick with a hyphen in her name. Another BLS rule … If I can’t pronounce their name, I don’t watch them play. The reign of “the Williams sisters” is apparently over. No more booty-butted catsuits on ESPN.
All three golf tours were televised this weekend. No one but close relatives and Fred Funk fans cared about the Champions (Seniors) event. A man named Allan Doyle won. Allen’s next door neighbor recognized him.
That leaves two possibilities … the PGA and the LPGA. El Tigre was on the prowl in Chicagoland. I’m betting El Tigre drew the most interest in sports bars across the fruited plain … BECAUSE Michelle Wie was eliminated from her event on Saturday. If golf tournaments were “fixed” (like apparently Italian soccer matches are!) then Michelle Wie would have played “Annika” on Sunday and won the weekend viewing sweepstakes hands down.
In fact … Bud Selig, if you are reading this … have Michelle Wie pitch batting practice in the All Star Home Run Derby … wearing, of course, Daisy Dukes and stilettos
Oh, I forgot … The Tour de No-Lance is in progress. A bicycle race without “a Lance” is “just a bicycle race”. Not even Allen Doyle cares about that one. UNLESS … we have Michelle Wie in spandex Daisy Dukes pedaling thru The Pyrennes being chased by “Captain Jack Sparrow” on a skateboard.
Where would you go to find Kickapoo Joy Juice and Shmoos?
BLS sezs …
How come … In movies and TV shows,
mentally retarded characters’ pants are always too short(!??)
Big News! EVERYBODY knows that Suicide Is Painless was the theme song for M*A*S*H. I thought it was a “cult” question. I could have asked Theodore Cleaver’s nickname and gotten fewer right answers.
BLS’ new gig as primary sports columnist on www.Out2.com is quite cool. Over 150,000 views for each of the first two columns. Often I will run the same story or a version here but not always. Out2 is a cyber news blog that is customized for over 12,000 local communities. Check it out.
The NEW CD IS OUT! … Sacred Cows & Other Roadkill … see info on the right hand column.
BLS’ speaking biz is ratcheting up to the “major leagues”. Now doing conventions, corporate meetings, country clubs, cruises, etc … in addition to the standard eulogies, birthdays and christening of new aircraft carriers. Also, complete info “on the right hand column”. Note: On the rubber chicken circuit, BLS checks his politics at the door.
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