Thursday, March 22, 2007

This American Football Conference


What do we do when we muse discursively on a topic? Do we reach a greater understanding of the world? Of ourselves? Of the suppurating boner we get when we tell the girl in the check-out line at Trader Joe's the big word we looked up from the New Yorker? I mean, The Believer.

("Hey! 'Postlapsarian.' That make you wet!? Wha- Ah! No! Don't take away my organic soy tandoori coconut chicken sticks.")

People, in the main, don't seek introspection. They seek the immediate gratification of a sentence directly expressed, and not the turbid waters of distilled genuine experience. Can't they understand nothing can be conveyed intellectually unless it's by an oblique music or movie quote? Also, they don't appreciate a throbbing phallus jammed into the duodenum. Philistines.

From WBEZ Chicago, it's This American Life, distributed by Public Radio International, I'm Ira Glass.

This week, the new American pastime: football. How did this come about? From whence did it come? Whither is it going? Did the twee novels we read not foretell such an phenomenon?


What do we talk about when we talk about football? Is the obsession a byproduct of our collective impetuous mindset? A Jungian desire for contact, kinetic energy... coherence? Freud said sometimes a cigar is just a cigar but he'd know for sure that Chris Simms is gay.

Now, football is something embraced by mainstream culture, therefore we must approach it leerily and with skepticism and superciliousness. To do otherwise wouldn't be fake-edgy, pseudo-intellectual and above-it-all.

(A music overlay of Boards of Canada's "Turquoise Hexagon Sun.")

Chapter 1 this week features Sarah Vowell talking about presidential assassins for 30 minutes. She may, at some point, compare Charles Guiteau to Jerry Rice, so don't switch over to that Sigur Ros record just yet.

Chapter 2: David Sedaris pays a visit to Wes Welker's dungeon school for cock-tickling gimps on the campus of Texas Tech and finds a way to make a cleverly worded reference to Jabberjaw and his wacky experiences learning French with his male partner in Paris. That is to say, Sedaris' experiences, not Jabberjaw's.

Chapter 3: A perfunctory attempt at engaging with real life folk. For authenticity's sake, we even let slip a few colloquialisms and sly references to the Iraq War. We'll explain to an ice cream man and an illegal immigrant the parallels of Faulkner and Jon Gruden. How devilishly informal and prosaic. I'll end the segment with an interview with Dave Eggers, who will be amused that I'm even asking him about something as mundane as football. He'll remark that there should be a team in Africa.

We hope you'll stick around.

36 comments:

Biggus Rickus said...

Good post. Funny. Kudos to you. Etc.

Now, do you think it is too much to ask for a little warning when you post a pic of a simulated-woman-with-vibrator-in-pussy patio table? Some of us are at work for Chrissakes, and while dicking around on the company dime is fine, being seen as a skeevy perv is most assuredly not.

Unsilent Majority said...

The Thinking Man's Guide to KSK

grungedave said...

my head hurts after reading that. Dick jokes should not take so much effort...

Captain Caveman said...

That was amazing. I hate NPR.

Burnsy said...

Too many words hurt mind recovering from too much beer.

Nope said...

I could definitely go for a case of jungle fever with Farai Chideya.

Mike said...

Ponder, posit, & possibilitize on the hermaneuticals of the term, "American Football." A militarized analog for territorial expansion, for one man's manifest destiny to reach painted pay dirt in another man's end zone.

Or so sayeth this Peter King wag of whom I read so much.

Or soccer, broken down into it particle parts, "Sock her." The reaction of the wounded male psyche upon the realization of the inherent feminine or
femas in the pitch of the European version.

And blahddy, blah, blah.

It's bad enough that the "Green Grass, Symmetrical Field, Crack of the Bat & Hot Dogs with Dad" Crown took away my baseball. Don't let these pansies within a 15 yard penalty of the NFL.

josh said...

there's a typo on "illgegal immigrant", ape. said fastidious probably outs me something awful as a listener to this parodied "hipsters revealing the basic goodness of America" radio programme, but this shit is still nicely done. the one trader joe's in new york is always fucking packed, but I hate that store. their wine's mighty cheap, though.

Claude Balls said...

What web award are you shooting for now?

Jackin'4Beats said...

Still too early in the morning to read this pretentious drivel.

Give me some good old fashioned stripper on stripper action.

Burnsy said...

Whoa, whoa, whoa. Some hippie complains about the vag being rocked in plain view and we blur it? The shackled snooch is the only thing my mind comprehends right now.

Biggus Rickus said...

For the record I only asked for a warning. Something like, "Hey, there's vag in this post!" Actually, that probably should have been the title.

Hercules Rockefeller said...

Know how to mack a broad, she's on your sack and balls

You call her Jabberjaws

Eric said...

sweet, what porn is that from?

College Wolf said...

Why did it get blurred out? What the hell.... Not cool. I saw it earlier. It was fine.

3000 said...

Yah, shit that i gotta think botu SUCKZZZZ!!!!! NOW WEre I leave my fukin Nikleback cds at?!?

FenwayFaithful78 said...

Good job Ape- just the right amount of KSK brand misogyny interspersed through all that beltway academic jibber jabber.


NPR puts me to sleep faster than 2 xanax and a tumbler of merlot.

BoSox Siobhan said...

I could almost hear Ira Glass's fey voice in my ear as I read that. Turns out he's straight - I never would have guessed. He and Sedaris sound identical.

Walklett said...

Me Talk Pretty One Day is a good book, no matter how bad David Sedaris' wang breath is.

liquid_d said...

Come on man, go easy! Some of us went to state universities and are scared/baffled by these big words, not that I made it past the porn.

devang said...

Shannon Sharp says:
mugga galunga, jubba,uumppah.

I saw Sedaris on Letterman once. funny.

devang said...

just the right amount of KSK brand misogyny interspersed through all that beltway academic jibber jabber

porn isn't misogyny. It's just good old fashioned entertainment.

Big Daddy Drew said...

He sort of looks like Tony Bourdain. Bet he doesn't eat live cobra hearts, though.

BeaverFever said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BeaverFever said...

i'd be willing to bet that 99% of the people that work for npr have never played or even watched football for that matter.

beware of people that talk smart or want you to know how smart they are. chances are they aren't as smart as they would like you to believe. as for me i openly admit i'm an idiot.

GotDebt said...

What the hell was this about? The attempts to meld current topics, high literature, toilet humour and football are tenuous at best. I've tried.

Signal to Noise said...

I like Sedaris, but for the most part, I still can't believe people who speak like they do on the show on a regular basis among real people actually exist.

Add me to the chorus of "Ira Glass' voice is a great cure for insomnia."

PANGER said...

Add me to the chorus of "Ira Glass' voice is a great cure for insomnia."

funny, hearing his voice keeps me wide awake, fantasizing about hitting him over the head repeatedly with a blunt object.

Patrick said...

SPOT on imitation. Down to every sentence. So well done.

swing4 said...

I heard this episode. It was titled Fundraiser for 826LA.

impresario919 said...

You totally should have used Leon Czolgosz (pronounced: "Czolgosz") for the Sarah Vowell joke.

Henry said...

Wow, that was awesome. I like all those people individually. But put them together like that and it's a whole nother (kinda unsettling) picture.

Thanks, I think.

Crapass said...

I'm confused.

Ralph said...

God this was a brilliant post. fucking ira glass, npr, dave eggers, that stupid bitch who does the weekend show with lots of narratives. they had it coming...

PeteJayhawk said...

Jesus Christ that was hilarious. I enjoy NPR but I enjoy twisted parody even more.

DR said...

Reality is biased. Right, guys? Insight and using a vocabulary that conveys you made it past 7th grade means you're pretentious. I agree. Smart people should pretend they're not smart so I don't get confused on a daily basis!