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"If you allow Richie Incognito to walk around and use a racial epithet, that all black Americans know the stigma and hate and vitriol that comes with that word — if you allow him to do that, you’re encouraging him to do that.

Some black players said Incognito was an honorary black. There’s no such thing. This tells me everything I need to know about the Miami Dolphins locker room. How we got here. Why we got here.

I’m 45, I grew up in rural south Georgia. Ask your parents, ask your grandparents. The mountain that they climbed so a black person in America can have respect, can have dignity. And you allow this, in an open locker room to take place, is unacceptable. I’m so disappointed. I hope that someone was misquoted. I hope I’m wrong and they didn’t allow Incognito to say this racially charged word in a locker room and go unchecked. I’m embarrassed.”

Shannon Sharpe. (via bricksandmortarandchewinggum)

I was following this football blog in my RSS (!) for a while (Cold Hard Football Facts). I didn’t read it regularly, but they had somewhat statistically based observations and some I guess funny or ‘hard hitting’ pieces occasionally. Well I read their ‘take’ on the Dolphins situation, actually long before I knew anything about it. I didn’t know the races of the players or even what happened. But they immediately launched into a narrative constructed around the idea of ‘reverse racism’ and media white knighting and stuff and I couldn’t even. “Unsubscribe.” I just unfollowed you, dude, on some ancient internet platform because of your even more ancient ideas. Just disgusting. This has been a real shitty year for football, hasn’t it?

(via bricksandmortarandchewinggum)

I think the only way the game survives, long-term, is if the rules change dramatically to something like flag football — to a sport that resembles basketball in terms of athleticism, pace of play, and violence. Me? I think I might enjoy watching such a football very much. But I don’t think most NFL fans would. Too many NFL fans are in it for the violent hits, not despite them.

For the record, John Gruber is still an asshole, and I only use Apple products for the shitty work conditions they were produced under.

OPFHJ Wild Card NFL Playoff Picks

Cincinnati @ HOUSTON -3½
Over/Under: 38½

It’s come to my attention that Carrie Brownstein is really attractive. Not just physically, of course, but she’s really charismatic and funny, and she’s really talented at music. She’s someone who can do stuff, and who’s toured hard and seems really independent. That makes her really attractive. Well! I take it I’m something of a latecomer to that notion. A late-blooming Carrie Brownstein crusher, as my girlfriend sort of put it. My very favorite thing to shake out of the New Yorker profile is that she and Miranda July learned acting together, in a group of learn-at-home actor types. I’m a big Miranda July fan, and I think she just runs over most of her peers at being talented and creative. Suck it, haters. It was also pretty funny that Brownstein used to do improv in college, and that Corin Tucker thought it was lame:

She had an improv group in Olympia. But it was like your friend who has this weird hobby. You know—some people are into trains? She was into improv. It wasn’t that cool, in the context.

Now I’m going to do that NFL picks thing: this game is the opposite of Carrie Brownstein right now, and it’s lame like how improv was lame back in the 90s. I’ll take the home team and the under because I don’t think it will be a very good game (offensive division).

Detroit @ NEW ORLEANS -10½
Over/Under: 59½

Let’s continue a theme. The Woods is (I now think) the non-Sleater-Kinney fan’s favorite Sleater-Kinney album. It’s really mature and much less bouncey than any of their previous albums. (Maybe discounting the debut s/t.) I’ve had a lot of favorite songs from The Woods over the years, but my favorite one right now is “Wilderness”. (I’m going to paste some of the lyrics here even though I think that’s illegal and I’m a little nervous about getting DMCA’d):

Said “I Do” in the month of May
said “I Don’t” just the very next day
Will they try again?
Or is it doom for them?

Moved to a city
Where hippies run wild
Everything’s white
Now so are the smiles
They tried, to fight the good fight

It’s pretty wild that a big part of the brilliance of Portlandia is prefigured right here in this song from seven years ago. The big-hearted derision for relationships and domesticity; unease with ‘making it’. I think the outcome of this game was probably prefigured a while ago, too. I’ll take the home team and the over.

Atlanta @ NEW YORK GIANTS -3½
Over/Under: 47½

I don’t know: can you tell I’ve watched way more Portlandia than NFL over the last few weeks? Drew Brees is good again — who knew? I understand the Giants sort of ‘backed in’ to the playoffs and Atlanta scrapped or something, too. I’m just really, really feeling home teams here, though. I really would like some points, though. I’m still bitter about the week where the Giants narrowly beat the Bills and Bradshaw had three touchdowns; that game simultaneously destroyed my fantasy team and my other fantasy team. I’ll take Atlanta and the under.

PITTSBURGH @ Denver -8½
Over/Under: 33½

Oh wow. Jeez. It’s games like this that make me somewhat happy that I rarely get the chance to take in sports media. I’m going to try to bracket my moral presuppositions. If I can get the points and the home team that seems pretty great. OK, I can. I’m just not going to overthink it: home team and the under.