Monday, March 07, 2005

And The Winner Is...Sloth

As my morning Krispies snap, crackle and pop in their styrofoam bowl, I can't help but reflect on yesterday's amazing day of Sloth. It's been a long time since we've followed such an exceptional day of sports with such an entertainment-packed night of television.

Ahhh, yesterday, how I heart thee. What a glorious day for parking yourself in front of the teevee from noon to 10:30. Outdoors and fresh air are overrated. Here's the recap:

Set I: Reveille, Bagel Run, Illini Looking Perfect > Whoooa Boy, Ohio State Upsets Illinois > First Half of UK/Florida > Coverage of the Doral Begins > Florida Upsets Kentucky > Bonus Coverage of Mizzou Upsetting Kansas > Doral's Back Nine > First Half of Duke/UNC > Unbelievable Finish at the Doral > Unbelievable Finish in Chapel Hill

Set II: Mediocre Simpsons, Arrested Development (Part I) > Deadwood Premiere...Cocksucker > Roommate's Girlfriend Made Us Some Bananas Foster > Arrested Development (Part II)

w/ special guest, 100+ pages of The Last Night of the Yankee Dynasty

Same as the old boss
After NBC's golf coverage kicked off at 3, I kept flipping back and forth to as much college hoops as I could find, but the main event of my day was the Doral. It may be March, but a day like this in golf hasn't come around nearly enough. After birdies on the first four holes, the world's top-ranked golfer Vijay Singh had played his way into third place, trailing Mickelson by three and Tiger by two. Now you had three of the world's best four golfers on the same course, with Lefty and Tiger playing together in the final pair. That's madness.

I don't really like playing golf. I'm not nearly good enough to enjoy it. To me it usually is a good walk spoiled, and I haven't set foot on a course in about two years. But watching golf is an entirely different matter: I love it (I've been swimming in raw sewage, and I love it). Yesterday was perfect -- the perfect duel, the perfect leaderboard, two guys firing perfectly on all cylinders at the same time for the first time since Tiger's initial ascent, with Vijay and Toms just a few strokes back. This was something to watch, two competitors in a personal and professional dogfight. We hadn't seen nearly enough of this.

All looked lost for Lefty when Tiger eagled 12 to take a two-stroke lead, but Phil showed remarkable resiliency with birdies on 13 and 14 to tie it up. Nobody fights back after one of Tiger's patented fistpumps, yet Phil did. It was like a newly popular Hulk Hogan breaking out of the Iron Sheik's Camel Clutch. Nobody did that. Now we're gettin' interesting, folks.

They both parred 15 before trading bogeys on 16 (the par-4 hole where Tiger drove the green on Saturday, unleashing a fucking 373-foot drive), sending both men to the 17th tee 23 under par. Tiger sank a 20-plus foot birdie, giving him a one-stroke lead going into the last hole. And with Tiger playing a little safer than usual, Phil had the chance to square it up on 18, nearly chipping in from 30 feet to send the tournament into bonus cantos.

But much like every other legitimate sport, golf is a game of inches...and Phil will be seeing that ball lip out of the cup and past the hole in his sleep tonight. What a match, though. Lefty is still as hot as can be (although I think he needs to work on his putts), but Tiger is back, baby. It's good to see Tiger draped in Championship Red and winning again.

Say what you will about the upsets in college hoops yesterday, but this match-up was the heat. This was golf at its finest, this is the Golden Fucking Age, the GFA. The only top-five golfer not around for the final round of the Doral was Ernie Els, who was instead winning the Dubai Desert Classic with an eagle on 18 to win by a stroke. I can't wait for the majors this year -- Tiger, Phil, Vijay, Ernie, Goosen, Toms, Adam Scott, Sergio...the Golden Fucking Age.

The Hoops
If you didn't think it felt like March yet, I'm sure yesterday changed all that.

Undefeated Illinois blows a late lead and loses by one on a three-pointer with less than five seconds left; third-ranked Kentucky gets stripped of the ball and stripped of the lead, missing a three-ball in the final seconds to salvage a win, falling to SEC rival Florida by one; seventh-ranked Kansas loses what seems like its 700th game over the past two weeks, falling to Mizzou by four; Chris Paul runs the floor and beats NC State with a ridiculous, off-balance jumper with no time left to give fourth-ranked Wake Forest a win it desperately needed with everyone else losing; and of course, Duke blows a nine-point lead in the final three minutes in Chapel Hill, cementing Sean May as the nation's most likely recipient of six blowjobs by Tuesday.

As parity continues to wreak havoc on the NCAA, this is going to be one of the greatest tournaments on record. Get Nantz, get Packer and his Iversonian "tough monkey" jargon, get Gumbel and Kellogg and the rest of the CBS crew...we're goin' dancing soon enough.

Woo woo, W-U.

Cocksucker Motherfucker
And so it begins. If you're not watching Deadwood, well then gosh, I don't even wanna know ya. I didn't buy into the first season, and I didn't bother watching the show. Too Western, too weird, I'm not interested in another Sunday night affair. Donnie and TJ and countless others pleaded with me to catch up, and I still refused. Until the last two weeks, I couldn't care less.

But then I watched the first two episodes of last season on demand, and then two more, and then two more, and now I'm as hooked as the dopers that killed Mister Wu's opium deliverymen. "Swegen...two coc-suckas." So I finally caught up. And you know what, this is the best show on TV right now. It beats the West Wing, the Sopranos, 24, you name it -- this show's better (well, Sorkin-written West Wings are clearly better, but right now, it's no contest).

Al Swearengen might be the greatest character in history, an even cooler Tony Soprano if that's even possible. How this guy didn't win an Emmy this year is beyond me. Completely beyond me. Swearengen is my new personal hero, the proprietor of a saloon and brothel, which leads him to great lines like this: "God rest the souls of that poor family... and pussy's half price for the next 15 minutes."

Watch this show if you're not. That's all I'm sayin'.

--For the New York Jews in the house, buy tickets to the off-Broadway show Jewtopia and take your parents. Then tell them to take notes. Fucking hilarious.

--Spank your kid or suspend that ass. Ahh, I miss Illinois.

--Barry Bonds reads Slack, I'm convinced. A day after I called out the hat and helmet makers, who may hold the best proof as to his growing noggin due to steroids, he unleashes this rant: "'What's all this about my head size?' Bonds asked. 'My hat size is the same today as when I started. My head hasn't grown. I've always been a 7-1/4 to a 7-3/8 my whole career. You can go check. Sometimes you get one and you sweat, it gets smaller, so you go a size up or a size down. Those things shrink when you sweat or they get wet during a season.'" [More...]

--Oh, I nearly forgot: WE GOT LA-LA-LA-LAVERANEUS COLES BACK! Way to go Jets front office, this is the best move I could have imagined. Coles and McCareins, with Cottchery and others filling the third receiver slot: Fannntastic. We signed Derrick Blaylock to back up Curtis, which is a great we just need some DT help and some CB help and I'm a happy boy. Super Bowl champs next year.

Go fuck yourselves.


At 10:58 AM, Blogger Matty Mac said...

I like the Mark Twain reference to golf being a good walk spoiled, although I don't agree with it. Tiger is most certainly back; I love watching the recoil from his tee shots, the club speed must be off the charts. What is also nice to see is Vijay's descent. I hate that f-ing guy. I am not sure why, either. It may be a combo between the way he talks (does he have an accent or a speech impediment?), the smack he talked about Annika Sorenstam and the fact that he is just an asshole. Not that Tiger is perfect or anything, but at least he has personality.

It's also great to see someone enjoying themselves on the course as well. Mickelson is all smiles now, it's great. And that lefty punch shot is unreal.

Fuck UNC, they should have never been given that timeout. They didn't have possession.

At 11:06 AM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

I like Vijay actually. I like all golfers, except maybe DL3. There were so many people either in Tiger's or Phil's cmap yesterday -- and the announcers kept trying to get me to choose sides as well. I couldn't imagine having to choose...why can't I just like both of 'em and root for a great round from both?

The greatest part about the round yesterday was probably the fact that it was hyped and it delivered. It all came down to less than an inch on a 30-foot chip on 18 -- how fucking awesome is that? Talk about drama.

UNC shouldn't have had to eke out a win on their home floor against a clearly inferior and hobbled Duke team. But good win for them. Sean May is a BEAST. Either way, Illinois should still be the top team in the nation, I hope the voters keep 'em up there.

At 11:29 AM, Blogger ethan said...

great college hoops indeed. but don't forget ace, UNC was without mccants (so they could be labeled hobbled too). that game was a friggin slugfest. normally i would say redick just had to drive there at the end, but they weren't calling any fouls so you can scratch that tactic off. still, duke's crunch time play was miserable. it should have never come to the TO/jump ball because how does ewing just lose control while dribbling there??

as per golf, well i know barely more about that than i do about this fish band you're always clamoring about, so i'll end this with a thanks for the iron shiek ref.

At 12:13 PM, Blogger John Howard said...

I can't get excited about college basketball anymore.

I'm with you on Deadwood, though, that's a great show. The premiere was great. I'll watch any show HBO puts on now, at least once. Did you see the preview for Rome? Tnat looks pretty good too.

At 12:58 PM, Blogger poophopanonymous22 said...

can i just say, welcome aboard ace, the deadwood fan club is glad to have u. i recall going out on a limb last year and saying it was the best show on tv, however, if 24 were on hbo it would be very close. i wish al swearengen was my father, and his line "welcome to deadwood" as the blood/mud dripped from his face has to rank up there as the greatest lines tv has ever offered up.

and i saw that rome preview and i expect it to kick some serious arse as well. there are certain subjects that tv shows cant go wrong with, and that has to be one of them

At 1:31 PM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

I lost a comment before, so if it magically shows up some time today I wouldn't be surprised. It was college hoops-related, but I'm not re-typing it.

Anyway, "Welcome to Deadwood" was an awesome way to end that epic fight. Like Tiger and Phil, I hope they don't force me to choose sides on this one -- I like Bullock, but don't be messin' with Al Swearengen, man.

Rome could be damn good...I'm usually not a period piece kind of guy, but I'll follow HBO anywhere, Mr. Gump.


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