Sunday, August 17, 2008

52 52 52 Week #26: Missouri

In which I examine crappy local sports journalism on a state-by-state basis, progressing through the states in terms of an alphabetical ordering of the heights of their tallest points. Because I can.

So this is, I think, the fifth straight week I'm writing this damn post away from home. Sure, I'm no longer in Central America, and I've got my own computer back at last, but hey...there's a reason why I'm not posting all that much lately. I'm just sort of a globetrotter. And, by that, I mean I'm in Florida right now. It's almost the same thing. Well, it's not completely an utterly different thing. Let's move on.

Because I made an executive decision that I'm not nerdy enough, I just finished rereading The Hobbit and am about to embark on The Lord of the Rings books. If nothing else, it'll give me so much more subtext as I get lost in Viggo Mortensen's eyes. It also has made me find Missouri's highpoint, the 1772-foot Taum Sauk Mountain, rather appropriately named. Sure, it's not the Misty or Lonely Mountain(s), but Taum Sauk Mountain just screams Tolkien. Maybe. Look, I've spent the last two days in a car. Work with me here as I give you the Taum Sauk report...

1. Its topography "is that of a somewhat flat ridge rather than a peak." You know, sometimes I just know I'm working with an interesting one. And sometimes the first fact is about how its topography isn't really mountainous. But hold on...

2. "While not as impressive at 1,772 feet (540 m) as other peaks, Taum Sauk and the St. Francois range are true mountains, being the result of a volcanic orogeny." Volcanic orogeny? If that doesn't sound deliciously dirty, you've probably got moral fiber or something. Whatever you've got, I'm missing it.

3. Some of you (read: none of you) may have heard of the Taum Sauk Pumped Storage Plant, which failed in 2005 and caused a flash flood. Well, don't blame Taum Sauk Mountain, as the plant "is not actually on Taum Sauk Mountain. It is on Proffit Mountain, about five miles (8 km) southwest." I feel like there's a deliciously anti-corporate pun I can make out of "Proffit Mountain", but I can't quite get there.

I'm trying really hard to not try very hard tonight. I think my plan is working. To the article!

Our newspaper today is The Joplin Globe, which has to be a solid contender for worst Wikipedia page in existence. I was going to do a, well, better newspaper this week, but the awesome shittiness of the Wikipedia page won me over. And then when I thought even so I should probably find a proper sports section, this headline showed me I had been right all along...

If I had caught any fish this past week ...

There's an art to the building of suspense, to quote Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead, and that headline just motherfucking built it. Larry Dabelmont, the floor is unimpeachably yours...

I don’t want to make anyone real awful mad here

You couldn't if you wanted to, old friend. You don't think he minds if I call him old friend, right? He just seems so lovably folksy and homespun!

but I can’t tell you the name of one politician running for anything that I would want to go fishing with.

I'm pretty sure that, if you diagram that sentence out, he's saying he wouldn't want to go fishing with, say, the office of the attorney general or somesuch. But hey, what's a little linguistic anarchy among such good, down-home-on-the-ol-fishin-hole friends? The missing "d" and "g" mean it's extra country-like!

The whole bunch of them seems a sorry lot to me.

Do you mean politically, or fishing-wise? Because I'm definitely on board with the latter, and quite possibly the former.

The ones who have won and the ones who didn’t win, I put them all in the same sack.

I'm pretty sure fish win by not getting put in your sack. Oh, wait, you're talking about politicians! What's that about them and your sack? I'm not sure I approve of such talk from a country gentleman...

But then, what do I know about politics? If I had caught any fish this past week I’d be writing about that.

Oh, so that was the resolution to the cliffhanger of what "if I had caught any fish this past week" would entail. That was...um...worth the wait. Yeah...totally. Oh, and while we're here, go see Tropic Thunder, please. It apparently needs all the help it can get, which is sort of a shame, because it's, you know, awesome. OK, OK, back to Larry.

I once shook Harry Truman’s hand, and I have to admit that I was impressed with him, even though I was only about six at the time.

Truman lived from 1884 to 1972 (I almost didn't have to look that up, though I was out by a decade on his year of birth), so that means Mr. Dabelmont could be anywhere from 42 to 130. Who wants to bet his age is closer to the latter than the former? (I'm suggesting he's OLD!!! Isn't that, like, hilarious? Come on, don't make me start randomly swearing in the name of fucking comedy.)

I also liked Ronald Reagan a lot. I can’t remember much about his presidency,

OK, what I'd like to make here is a joke mocking Ronald Reagan on the grounds that he was incompetent and openly slept through a shitload of his two terms. The joke I'd like to make is "That's OK. Neither did Reagan." Unfortunately for both him and the purposes of my joke, the illness that affected Mr. Reagan later in his life renders that joke a bit tasteless. Dammit reality, always cramping my comedy buzz.

Also, I'm fairly sure any Reagan-bashing might result in Djmmm hunting me down and killing me Ollie North style. Best just to move on.

But I really liked Ronald Reagan in those Western movies he made after he got out of politics.

That...that was awesome. That's the kind of so obviously dumb he's a genius - albeit a batshit crazy genius - sort of shit that just makes me fall in love with sports journalism all over again. I'm primed, Dabelmont, hit me again!

I have read some things about Teddy Roosevelt that makes me think he was a lot like me, since he liked to hunt and fish so much and float rivers, and did some outdoor writing. He and I looked very much alike too.

OK, that was more "3rd grader writing about his incarcerated father" than satirically folksy sports journalist, but I'm willing to try it again.

But of course my favorite president will always be Abe Lincoln, who had two things no president or even presidential candidate will ever have again. He was poor, and he was honest.

Andrew Johnson was actually poorer than Lincoln - I believe Johnson is the only president most historians consider to be "born poor" - and even Richard Nixon came from a relatively poor background. Admittedly, that last one doesn't really help on the honesty front. Um, how is this about sports again?

Earlier in my life I too was poor and honest, and as a matter of fact I am still relatively poor, and I am being honest about that.

You're starting to lose me, Dabelmont. Also, I'm having a real hard time keeping the consonants in your last name in the correct order. Any chance you could do something about that?

My favorite politician was Davy Crockett. He and I were so much alike that it is just amazing, except for the fact that he did get into politics, becoming a Tennessee congressman. My cousins and I watched him on Walt Disney when we were kids

OK, time for a vote. Who here is honestly uncertain Larry understands the Disney show he watched wasn't a documentary about Davy Crockett, but instead a highly fictionalized adventure show? Yeah, me neither.

Crockett was loved by his constituents, just as I am loved by my readers, except for a few ladies who got mad about that recent article concerning female bass.

You know what? There's no way I'm topping that. You win, Dabelmont. Be sure to savor your victory, which I can only assume involves doing unspeakable things to female bass.

1 comment:

Djmmm said...

*Puts away Big Knife Designated For Uncle Ronnie-Related Vengeance... FOR NOW*