Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Title Currently Under Construction


I should probably give up TV.  However, as a sports fan, I watch games & if not the games themselves, then ESPN for highlights, but not without annoyances, such as E-Trade babies training endlessly through telecasts like cherubs (actually putti) in cheesy knockoffs of Baroque paintings. That alone should be enough to make me turn off the tube, but I have high pain-tolerance.

There are limits. For instance, have you ever seen Jim Jarmusch's The Limits of Control? I mention this because, despite its total suckiness, I made it through the entire movie without once committing suicide. Contemplate, yes, repeatedly; commit, no, though it was touch & go there for a bit.

One morning last week while getting ready for basketball (I play 3 or 4 times a week--if you're interested, let me know), I tuned into Mike & Mike, a sports talk show on ESPN as I often do before hitting the hardwood. One of the hosts, Mike Greenberg, one of ESPN's stable of annoying analysts (Skip Bayless is not alone) prefaced his remarks, as is his wont to do, by stating that the owners are, collectively & individually, brilliant by virtue of having a gazillion dollars.

Is he serious? I hope he doesn't actually think there is any truth in this claim, for there is no--zip, zero, zilch--correlation between wealth & intelligence. Only two kinds of people think that having money means you're smart: 1) people who have money; & 2) complete & utter morons.* For every Bill Gates, there's a Mitt Romney.  As for NFL owners, at least some of them inherited the teams & their fortunes. How smart is being born? Not very, dumbass.

By the way, why do teams need owners? Owners serve next to no function except to profit from the talents & labors of others. In fact, team ownership serves as a fairly good model of what exploitation means--well, once you remove the mind-boggling salaries that players make. Yeah, players are overpaid, but so are actors, doctors, lawyers, CEOs, sports analysts, etc., so I don't begrudge athletes their pay, given the stupid system we have. For most people, capitalism sucks. Furthermore, the American Dream is aptly named because it's sheer fantasy like unicorns & fire-breathing dragons.

As a poet, not a career that provides much in the way of monetary rewards, I find statements that equate bucks & brains particularly offensive. Just as there are stupid rich people (the Trump & Dubba come immediately to mind), there are also smart people (Michelangelo & Tesla, for instance) who are/were poor.  While the list of rich twits would prove virtually inexhaustible, it's more difficult to name poor smart people because history is a record of the lives of the famous. Many unknown teachers, for instance, would qualify as poor but smart. To put it simply, there are stupid people in all walks of life--rich, poor, & everywhere in between. You can't swing a dead cat by the tail without hitting someone stupid. By the way, swinging a dead cat is not exactly a cerebral activity, so don't.

Fortunately, there are smart people too. Take, for example, you.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012