In a move I like to call: you’re a moron…

I thought things with Bachelor #3 were done. Over the weekend I got another apology, minus an explanation, plus the whole, “I want to be friends more than anything” speech.

Eye-roll. I could have responded in one of three ways:

1 – Completely ignore him

2 – Tell him to go fuck himself

3- Agree to be friends because guys never mean it anyway and who cares

I stupidly chose option 3. Apparently he was serious, and told me he was going to pick me up on Sunday morning and we were going to go watch football.

Everything was fine, except he picked up the tab, which does not align with being friends. And we had a blast – at least I did, who knows what he was thinking. He even threatened to buy me a Maurice Clarett jersey for Christmas as part of his imposed therapy and insistence that I get over the end result of the 2003 Fiesta Bowl (that was not FUCKING pass interference!!).

(Side note: I’ve finally figured out how to tell if you’re on a date in Southern California, and that is whether or not they walk you to your car. If they do, it’s a date, if they leave you to fend for yourself in an eight story parking garage – probably not.)

Anyway. So it’s fine, I am thinking okay, we’ll be friends, because I’m still new here and he’s fun, and I don’t want to give up fun even though the pendulum of “fucked up” has already swung back and forth numerous times between “awww” and “run for your life” in the precisely three weeks that I have known him.

But Monday when I asked him if I could buy him drinks later this week because he’s paid for everything else, I get a text back saying he needs me to know that he’s a dick when it comes to dating (pause for reaction)…

…and that he sees the way I look at him when we kiss and he doesn’t want to hurt me.

First of all: SO MUCH CONDESCENSION.

Second of all: That ship has already sailed far far away after our third date.

Third of all: You have paid for everything we’ve done so far including when you just wanted to be “friends” (pause to look up definition)…

…Then I offer to buy you some drinks and maybe throw in some baseball and all of a sudden the way I looked at you when you last kissed me over a week ago is now a problem?

To make matters worse, I got a barrage of OKCupid messages on Sunday night in a play I like to call the End of Weekend Blues. The candidates were as follows:

One guy listed on his profile weed as one of the six things he can’t live without and that the first thing people usually notice about him is how he gets down (??). One guy was 51. Automatic no. One guy could not get his subject/verb agreement right (You meet Jay Cutler), and one couldn’t form a complete sentence: “Good morning miss looking gorgeous and oh yeah Ohio not a real state ;)”.

So is it any wonder I want to continue to hang out with Hottie McHott even though he’s kind of a prick? When he’s not being a prick, he’s fun. I know, I know, I’ve learned nothing. I try, and this is what happens:

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What I really think of Notre Dame

This is what I used to think of Notre Dame: It’s was America’s school. The benchmark for Catholicism and greatness, located in idyllic South Bend, IN, it was known for its excellence both in the classroom and on the field/court/pool, whatever. I had high school friends who applied there just to say they had – that they would even consider Notre Dame must mean they were striving for the same level of excellence the school is known for. Everyone wanted to go there, teach there, play there, donate to there and be part of that reputation.

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Why do we idolize athletes? Both college and professional? Because they represent us. We grow up rooting for our home town NFL teams (for those of us who had them) or the team our parents grew up rooting for – and because of that, these athletes represent us. If they win, it means we win, our city wins, we’re above the losing team and city. We feel glorious and validated and hopeful. If they lose, we hurt with them and feel morose and start pointing fingers. We lost because of bad play calling. We lost because of poor clock management. The offensive coordinator is a douche bag.

Finding the right college is hard. We strive to find the perfect combination of location (after all, you’re there for the next four years) academics, opportunities, Greek life, and athletics. Potential athletes are wined and dined and everyone’s effort goes in to convincing them your school is better than my school. Non-athletes go through campus tours and talking to current and former students. How much financial aid will I get? Will I still be paying for this degree when I’m 65? How will this school look on my resume?

And then we choose. And the first thing that happens when you get there is football. Take the incoming freshman to a football game so they can see what the school is all about. The players aren’t just students. As a team, they shoulder the school’s reputation – if they win, we win, if they lose, we lose. Losing means criticism from ESPN on down to the dorm newsletter. And so we win and lose with them. And maybe that’s why people will go to extreme lengths to protect the athletes, and by proxy, the school’s reputation.

This isn’t about me, but I am going to use myself as an example.

I am originally from New Hampshire. The only school that I thought about going to when growing up was Michigan, because my mom went there. Then, when it was actually time to pick, I wanted to go south. I wanted a break from brutal New England winters. And so, I ultimately chose the University of Miami. It sits in the middle of Coral Gables, a lush campus with palm trees lining the entrance. I picked it for that reason, knowing nothing about the football team. I lasted two years there. I was miserable, the girl walking around campus in jeans and a long sleeve shirt because I was so self-conscious about my body. I felt like I was at a day spa rather than a college. I longed for something more normal. And so I transferred to the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign in the fall of 2001. A school that could not have been more different. That was the season Miami started its undefeated run. And because I was at a new school and lonely, I latched on to that success, that greatness, as if I were still a part of that school. Because even though I left, I still had friends there and memories there and was a part of something there vs. that first semester at U of I when I struggled like I could never have imagined. So I rode the coat tails of a perfect season all the way to the Rose Bowl because it gave me something to focus on and made me feel special, important, and bonded with everyone else who was still there.

We spend months dissecting a season. When it’s over, we start planning for the next one. It’s our school and those are our players and we want to be represented by winners, not losers.

So when they lose, the excuses come out. And when the players fuck up, the excuses come out.

Which brings me back to Notre Dame and this whole Manti Te’o fiasco with the fake dead girlfriend.

While I am not sure what to believe in terms of how it happened and who is behind it, I do not, for one second, believe Te’o to be the victim in all of this.

Pat Forde, of Yahoo Sports, who I do respect, wrote a column in which he believes Notre Dame AD Jack Swarbrick’s declaration that Te’o was duped:

Chin quivering and voice catching, the Notre Dame athletic director fought emotion in describing Manti Te’o as “the single most trusting individual I have ever met.” 

Yeah, whatever dude.

Forde also writes:

Swarbrick says a private investigator hired by Notre Dame to look into the matter has evidence that Te’o was victimized by individuals who invented an online girl and engaged her in a relationship with the player. Due to privacy concerns, the school is not in a position to release that evidence, but hopefully Te’o will provide some documentation that corroborates what Swarbrick said.

Te’o must also explain why he said he met Lennay Kekua, when that apparently never happened. He must explain why his father, Brian, also said the two met. He must explain why, if he felt for this dying girl the way he reportedly did, he never left the Notre Dame campus to be with her near the end – not at the hospital, not at the grave. He must explain why he went along with the storyline instead of publicly correcting the record, even after telling his coaches and Swarbrick about the hoax on Dec. 26.

Here is what I think: I think Te’o was a part of this whole thing – who dates someone for three years and NEVER meets them, but says they met? Your team plays Stanford every year where your alleged girlfriend goes and you’ve never met her?

Outkick the Coverage makes some excellent points about this:

First:

If you believe there is a straight man on earth not currently in prison who has a three-year exclusively online relationship, then you’re a damn fool.

Period.

There’s just no way this actually happens.

Especially for a college kid who happens to be the best player on a football mad campus.

Exactly – when he probably had thousands of options, why would he pick someone in Palo Alto that he never sees?

Which brings me to their next point:

What’s more, she purportedly canceled several face-to-face meetings with him. At some point if you’re remotely intelligent — or even just a horny college student — don’t you start to question a relationship when your online girlfriend won’t meet you?

I don’t know if Te’o made her up so he could fake her death and triumph in football for the feel-good emotional story of the year. The media was falling all over themselves to laud him with praises and now they’re failing all over themselves to beat this to death and find the truth and Jack Swarbrick is crying over a fake dead girl versus an actual dead girl.

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Which brings me to how I NOW feel about Notre Dame: I feel nothing but disgust over an AD that is crying and claiming his football player is a victim, when he said NOTHING about Lizzy Seeberg, the St.Mary’s student who committed suicide after being sexually assaulted by a Notre Dame football player. It can’t be that he’s not crying because she didn’t go to Notre Dame. The fake dead girlfriend went to Stanford. It’s because Notre Dame will do anything and everything to protect their precious football program and players, no matter how horrific their actions.

I love that the team was curb stomped by Alabama. I love that their egos were flattened. I have nothing but disgust for a school that has scrambled to hide multiple sexual assaults (hello, Notre Dame? Do you REALLY want to be compared to Penn State?) but claims one of the football players is the victim of a scam. And if Te’o was really fooled, who has that kind of TIME, to create a fake person and keep that façade going for three years?

I hate that Notre Dame is now scrambling to protect their own players when they refused to protect victims of sexual assault. Because when your football team shoulders your reputation, you’ll do anything to protect it. And that, maybe, is the saddest thing of all.

Here We Go Again

Well, it’s already happened.  Even though I said I was going to try and CALM DOWN about sports, the part diva, part monster in me has once again emerged and turned me into a raving lunatic.

The White Sox have been on a recent tear, and this past weekend concluded their last home stand before the All-Star Break.  Earlier in the week, they swept the Rangers and had taken the first two games against the Blue Jays.  Yesterday, game three, was a gorgeous day to sit outside to watch baseball, and so we did.

The game did not get off to a good start as Dylan Axelrod gave up two, two-run home runs.  In the first inning.  I think it went something like walk – HR – walk – HR, so we were in a 4-run deficit pretty quickly.  No bueno.

Alex Rios managed a 3-run HR in the bottom of the first, but Toronto just kept hitting, and every time we threatened to tie, something would go wrong.  And we came SO CLOSE – final score 11-9.  I was dreaming of the Youkilis game-winner that I experienced on the 4th of July, but, alas…

There were several issues at hand here.  One being that Robin Ventura started Tyler Flowers, presumably to give A.J. a break, but Flowers cannot hit his way out of a paper bag and, I mean, I know you can’t blame the catcher for bad pitches (or CAN you???) but there were definitely defensive plays he didn’t make that A.J. could have – I think at one point Toronto stole two bases IN A ROW.

I was screaming for them, at the very least, to have A.J. pinch-hit for Flowers, which they eventually did (I was like one of those crazy fans that probably calls the White Sox switch board to say things like, “You tell Jerry and Kenny to get rid of Ozzie!”  or “Tell Jerry to claim Player XYZ off waivers!”  or “Tell Jerry I’m delusional enough to think you’ll tell him whatever I say!”).

Another issue was the home plate umpire – Ballsy McBiased.  The difference in his version of a strike zone for when we pitched vs. when they pitched was mind-boggling.  I mean, he may as well have just ruled every ball a home run.  Ventura finally had enough and read him the riot act in the ninth inning – I am dying to know what he said because I imagine it was even meaner than what I was thinking.

(Something along the lines of “You stupid !$%@W&*@)_!*)#!O_!)(#!  Go $^@(*^$ yourself!”)

Ventura was ejected from the game and left the field to a standing ovation.

Look, I know crazy people like to blame the umps for everything, and certainly the way we pitched did not help us at all, but some of the calls he made were completely atrocious – calling a strike on Adam Dunn and then the next inning giving a ball to Toronto for the exact same pitch (or something, I think – see link below)

South Side Sox has a much more eloquent and smart sounding recap of the game if you’re interested.

True to form, I have now decided one loss is the end of the world (false) and there’s no way they can make the playoffs (also false).

In fact, I think this team has great potential.  Ventura has been a wonderful manager thus far.  You can really tell how much he cares about the team.  Ozzie didn’t give a shit last year – and apparently doesn’t this year either because his new team is struggling just as much as his old team did – and he’s taking Buehrle down with him, which is pissing me off! (8-8 with a 3.25 ERA – not horrendous but not great).  Zambrano is 4-7 with a 4.20 ERA, once again proving he cannot back up his mouth with any type of performance.

Wait, what was I talking about?

Here’s to a great second half of baseball!