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Sundries
...a sweatshop of moxie

Monday, February 13, 2006

Bob Costas Ragu

Veteran NBC sportscaster, Bob Costas, has a big problem.

It's not his encyclopaedic knowledge of baseball, and sport in general.

It's not his boyish Michael J. Fox good-looks.

It's not his job security, since NBC have him wrapped up for life.

(Or at least, until one more New York Yankees World Series ring -- which won't happen in our lifetimes anyways)

Bob Costas' biggest problem is...himself.

His problem is shared by a whole world of grown men and women, who never quite got over having been elected Student Government president.

Al Gore is their poster child.

These types are exceedingly awkward in public occasions, drawing attention to their ungainly presentation, by the mere action of opening their mouths.

See, the deal is everyone knows they were the straight-A, sits at the front of class students. That's not in question.

But what makes a geek hateable, or at least annoying, is that they are hyper-aware of themselves, ALL the time.

And nothing is more embarrassing, than to see a person's wheels turning in their noggin -- it's like watching a Rolodex in action, as the perfect card pops up with all the information needed for the appropriate occasion.

Usually, these kinds of persons are relentlessly tedious, but they know that full well.

So, in compensation, they try to lighten the mood by dropping the most clever of bon mots or the most obscure of cultural referenes, so that their audience (a) is in no doubt who is in charge of the moment, and (b) gets their own wheels churning, as they process the just dropped witticism, or factoid into their heads.

Why?

Because their target is the polishing of their own self-esteem, and the spreading of knowledge wherever they are -- the very raison d'etre of geeks everywhere.

Now, you may ask, how do I know all this?

As you might have guessed, I myself am a bit of a geek.

But what saves me from utter dullardness, I hope, is the fact that I take myself seriously (very seriously) up to a POINT...but then, after that, everything is a joke, including myself.

Self-deprecation works wonders for the soul, but it cannot seem studied, but rather, flow naturally from the sense of fun a person has about life in general.

And this is precisely what Bob Costas' and many of his ilk, lack.

Everything that comes out of his mouth seems like a mental cue-card, just waiting to be read out loud for the edification of all, and man, is that boring.

One feels like grabbing the man, and telling him to have a nice hot Cointreau and STFU, and you know how rarely I use acronyms of profanity -- at least publicly.

I'm a swear-whore in private.

Take Sunday night's Olympic broadcast coverage:

I could barely believe the complete contrast he made when he interviewed Shaun White, the Flying Tomato, who is this Olympics' edition of Anton Apolo Ohno: the US' media's blue-eyed boy, to whom all attention turns.

There was Shaun White, with his winsome toothy grin, and shiny donut-shaped Gold Medal around his neck, tossing his Danny Bonaduce locks, when Bob Costas kills his buzz with this Jeopardy Quiz zinger:

"The Medal has a hole in it, because it represents the Italian piazza."

The gold medalist smiled, and said what anyone would say, "I did not know that."

Who on earth would, but the man who has Mickey Mantle's jock-strap size memorised?

And when Shaun White was contemplating what chick magnets gold medals are, and if maybe he and Sacha Cohen could hook up now, Costas rushes headlong with,

"I feel like Chuck Woollery."

One weeps whenever in such people's company.

To make good conversation in a 10 minute interview is very difficult. I don't begrudge Bob Costas' moments of pedantry, so long as he understands he has no street cred at all.

No one is going to nickname HIM the Flying Feta, or The Greek Salad Tosser, no matter how hard he tries to be all down with the athletes he covers.

Because it's when the class genius decides he wants to be as cool as the class jock, that the symmetry of the cosmos is thrown out of alignment.

That's it.

Whenever Costas speaks, he threatens the established world order.

This cannot stand, people. With sneaking voice, and raised Henry II eyebrow (see above about pedantry), I urge all who read this:

Someone rid me of this meddlesome broadcaster!

Or we can just wait until he shoots himself in the foot...again.

MORE BOB COSTAS RAGU

Costas refuses to host show on Natalee Holloway case, for unspecified reasons.

Was it because he, like so many people, seem outraged so much attention is paid to yet another "Missing White Girl"?

ABC News likens his stand to Keith Olbermann's refusal in 1998, to cover Monica Lewinsky stories for MSNBC.

And I'm not the only one who thinks Costas' presentation style is pedantic, alongside Katie Couric.

Of course, the juiciest rumour surrounding Costas isn't about his sex life (as if). It's about his future prospects.

He is widely rumoured to be on the short-list for MLB Commissioner should Bud Selig ever step down.

You see -- wet dreams can come true.

7 Comments:

  • Victoria, what is wrong with me if I never liked Gore but did like Costas??? Any therapy you would recommend?

    By Blogger Jose Aguirre, at Mon Feb 13, 09:23:00 am GMT-5  

  • 'Like Sisyphus, eternally sentenced to push his boulder up the same hill, Bob Costas is in an eternal struggle to find a metaphor sufficiently snooty enough to demonstrate both his encyclopedic knowledge of sports and the world outside sports, yet like Sisyphus he's destined to ever pursue his goal without end'

    (sorry had to do it, he actually whipped out the Sisyphus analogy himself when describing the Bills after their 4th consecutive Superbowl loss. Since, it has become one of the prime examples of 'Costaen' excess)

    By Blogger XWL, at Mon Feb 13, 01:23:00 pm GMT-5  

  • When Costas had his late night interview show, he managed to really tick off Paul McCartney with his line of questions! I thought Macca was gonna punch him! Costas showed him a Maxwell House Coffee print ad with Macca lyrics and asked; "Does this bother you?"

    Macca gave him an evil look, paused, sat up straight and said, "Heaps," with such sourness!

    Wonderful!

    By Blogger Ron, at Mon Feb 13, 01:28:00 pm GMT-5  

  • Victoria, what is wrong with me if I never liked Gore but did like Costas???

    Pero niño! Si ese Costas es de lo mas pesado.

    Y antipatico.

    And you know how much Cubans hate personas pesadas.

    Any therapy you would recommend?

    Take two cortaditos, and kiss your wife in the morning.

    (Awww. Happy Valentines!)

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Mon Feb 13, 11:53:00 pm GMT-5  

  • (sorry had to do it, he actually whipped out the Sisyphus analogy himself when describing the Bills after their 4th consecutive Superbowl loss. Since, it has become one of the prime examples of 'Costaen' excess)

    Wow.

    The funny thing about that is that Thurman Thomas probably heard that, and wanted to punch him out for calling him a sissy...

    Okay, question:

    Why do I like (the recorded segments featuring) Howard Cossell, but hate Bob Costas?

    They are (were) both wordy, nerdy, and overly ponderous.

    Interestingly, I happen to choose the guy who had a bit of a meanstreak, whereas Costas looks like a powderpuff to me.

    And maybe therein lies my distaste.

    To be a true intellect, you have to be a bit nasty, else nobody respects you.

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Mon Feb 13, 11:56:00 pm GMT-5  

  • When Costas had his late night interview show, he managed to really tick off Paul McCartney with his line of questions! I thought Macca was gonna punch him! Costas showed him a Maxwell House Coffee print ad with Macca lyrics and asked; "Does this bother you?"

    Macca gave him an evil look, paused, sat up straight and said, "Heaps," with such sourness!

    Wonderful!


    Awesome, Ron! I didn't see that interview. :)

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Mon Feb 13, 11:58:00 pm GMT-5  

  • I don't much like Costas (I actually liked Lampley's Olympic hosting better, before finding out just how much of a loon he was), but I do like Dennis Miller. How's that add up?

    The guy I really can't stand is Al Michaels.

    By Blogger JSU, at Tue Feb 14, 02:44:00 am GMT-5  

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