Nude World Order: Questions that (don’t) need to be answered

It’s been a long, busy weekend in the sports world. Unfortunately, I wasn’t really paying attention to any of it, which has left me with a whole lot of questions. . .

One day last semester, my art history class learned the word “apotropaic,” meaning “talismanic” or according to Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, “designed to avert evil.” Doesn’t this seem to be a word designed with the Rally Monkey in mind?

Wouldn’t that make David Wells the opposite of apotropaic? He could be the Losing Gorilla, or preferably something far cleverer than that.

Given that nobody pitches to him with runners on base anyway, and the bottom of the Giants’ order scares precisely nobody, shouldn’t Barry Bonds be hitting leadoff? And did someone steal Tom Glavine’s lucky mitt or something? After Sunday’s game, every Braves fan should be allowed to grab him by the lapels and shout in his face, “You’re killing me, Smalls!”

After listening to Eagles fans like Zak Haviland ’04 bleat about their supposedly invulnerable team, how nice is it to see them take a nosedive against Jacksonville? A hundred yards for Donovan McNabb on the ground is all very well and good, but I think I speak for the whole room when I say that the Willy Beamen routine might get old real quick.

It’s not bloody likely, but did anyone out there in fantasyland draft the Bills’ defense? And if you did, can you bring yourself to my attention so I can laugh in your face? Even I knew that these poor suckers were going to drag down the ship, much like they did Sunday by giving up a 50-spot to the Raiders. And once you’ve seen Jerry Rice run the same eight-yard out pattern for roughly two decades, wouldn’t you consider trying to stop it?

What ever happened to three-quarters of the kids from “Dead Poets’ Society?” There’s Ethan Hawke, and the guy from “Sports Night,” but beyond that there’s a whole lot of nothing. Sort of a shame.

Anyone out there paying attention to the MLS playoffs? Anyone? It’s sad, too, because there have been a fair number of spectacular games, and my favorite squad – the usually atrocious New England Revolution – have actually made it to the semi-finals for the first time in history, with young stud Taylor Twellman leading the way. Twellman, or as I like to call him, “T-squared”, left Maryland early to pursue a professional career with 1860 Munich and has used that experience to wreck shop in our fledgling league. Look for lots more from T-squared in the future.

Speaking of which, is Manchester United seriously thinking about touring the USA next summer and NOT playing a single MLS team? Can’t we deny them entry visas for that? Or does nobody care? Right. . .

What did Greg Gumbel do to deserve having Phil Simms as a partner? In one cringe-inducing stretch during the Pats-Dolphins contest, Simms first told the national television audience that his partner was in fact 60 years old (sample: “He doesn’t look that old, but he actually is.”). A couple of non-sequiteurs followed, topped off by his observation that Ricky Williams fumbles the ball often because his arms are too strong. Hell, not even Mark Robertson ’02 was this bad.

For purposes of defeating hunger, does anything beat a green pepper-and-onion calzone from Colonial’s late on a Sunday night? The answer to this question, of course, is a resounding no.

Anyone get excited about an Ole Miss victory for the first time in their life Saturday? I don’t much follow the college football myself, but all three of the big-time Florida teams have earned my displeasure over the past 20 years, and like many jealous Northerners, I’m perfectly glad to see them taken down a peg or two. Of course, one could say that the Gators only got what they deserved for hiring a coach named Zook.

While we’re on the topic of Ole Miss, isn’t it somewhat ridiculous that Eli Manning was able to accomplish what brother Peyton was not able to and actually beat Florida? This takes the Ewing Theory value for the Manning family entirely off the scale. I exepct the Sports Guy to address this sometime soon.

Do you think Randy Moss is lying when he says that it wasn’t his weed in the back of his SUV? I’m a trusting guy, but the only way I’ll buy that is if Tony Tarasco is somehow involved. Although Kirby Puckett does have that glaucoma problem, doesn’t he?

How soon until the Great Outdoors Games come back? I think the canine long jump has serious potential as a sport; Williams needs to do its best to get some sort of qualifier or preliminaries for the next one.

Is CBS really “America’s Most Watched Network?” I’m really not convinced, although I do admit that I’m really excited now for “Bram and Alice.”

While Johnnie Cochran is undoubtedly correct that the NFL discriminates against blacks in its hiring practices for coaches, why must the threat of lawsuits always be used to affect any sort of meaningful change? Of course, Cochran’s draft pick-based compensation system has absolutely zero chance of ever being used; teams would fire at least two assistant coaches every year just for the chance of picking up a pair of third-round selections. I do hope that something positive comes out of all this, though.

And finally – now that the Yanks are out of the playoffs, will all their “Wait ‘til next year” jokes about the Red Sox be put to a stop? This situation should be closely monitored. Until next time. . .