All Around The Mulberry Bush Today …

In a column last week in the Hampton Roads Virginian-Pilot, Bob Molinaro offered up some career advice for enterprising young techies who want to get their foot in the door in the sports world”

“Sign of the times: In the wake of three big-leaguers expressing regrets for homophobic and racists tweets written as teenagers, it’s past time pro franchises – and perhaps colleges – hired somebody to do nothing but comb through every player’s social media and delete old, embarrassing messages. Wait and see: Tweet hunters will be the newest sports growth industry.”

I think Professor Molinaro is on to something here.  There are two trends in the US these days that contribute to the potential growth in this field:

  1. Gotcha America:  In this milieu, one searches for and gets credit for finding a previously unseen flaw in a public figure and springing it on him/her in a very public setting
  2. Aggrieved America:  In this milieu, everyone reserves for himself/herself a God-given right to be offended by anything even marginally untoward done by a public figure in his/her past or present. Moreover, inhabitants of Aggrieved America also declare their right to let everyone else know how mightily offended they are.

When someone finds an “offensive” Tweet or Facebook posting from long ago for a public figure, that becomes the confluence of Gotcha America and Aggrieved America and that leads to a maelstrom of misery for the offender.  It matters not how long ago the transgression was or if the transgression has been repeated as a continuing pattern.  In the maelstrom of misery, the only thing that is certain is that the offender must be vilified and shamed in the current moment for happenings in the past.  Sadly, this makes me believe that Molinaro’s idea for a new career field has legs.

Switching gears …  The NBA announced its Christmas Day games this week.  There will be 5 of them.  Anyone who has ever thought about the NBA for more than a millisecond knew what one of the games would be; so, the announcement of the 5-game menu had only 4 games that might have surprised anyone.

  1. The Warriors versus the LeBrons – errr the Lakers:  Everyone saw that one coming.  By the way, given the rest of the Lakers’ roster for 2018/19, calling them the LA LeBrons makes plenty of sense.  It is about the only reason to pay attention to the team.
  2. The Knicks versus the Bucks:  The NBA puts the Knicks on every year on Christmas Day.  I guess it is about getting fans in the NY market interested in tuning in because the Knicks are absolutely irrelevant.  Kristaps Porzingas will not be ready to play in December so who outside of NYC cares to see the rest of that roster?  OK, Giannis Antetokounmpo is always fun to watch – – but there could be opponents a lot more interesting.
  3. The Jazz versus the Blazers:  This should be an interesting game; both teams made the playoffs last year and the Jazz made it to the second round.  Like Antetokounmpo, Donovan Mitchell is always fun to watch.
  4. The Thunder versus the Rockets:  This game should be interesting and important; these are two of the best teams in the Western Conference.  Sadly, I think the storyline here will be Melo versus his old thunder teammates.  If you tune in, just ignore that meaningless storyline.  Melo was a non-entity in OKC last year and is not going to be a pivotal player in Houston this year; he has reached his sell-by date.
  5. The Sixers versus the Celtics:  This should be a good game and an important game.  This year, these two teams can re-kindle an NBA rivalry from “way back when”.  It just might be that these are the two teams playing for the Eastern Conference championship next June now that LeBron has taken his talents to the Western Conference.

Data are in for the second month of legal sports wagering in Delaware.  Here is the bottom line:

  • From 25 June through 29 July, wagers totaled approximately $8.2M and bettors collected $7.7M.
  • Net profit for the sportsbooks and the State of Delaware was $461,226.
  • Profit is split 50/50 between the State and the casinos.

The Arizona Cardinals seem to be taking their lead from baseball teams this year.  Often, I chronicle here some of the culinary catastrophes offered up at ballyards; this year the Cardinals have one for their football patrons.  Before revealing the “recipe” for this bad boy, the overview goes like this.  It is a hamburger-based dish that has 11 ingredients, weighs 7 pounds and costs $75.  Put on a bib and grab the Rolaids; here are the makings for The Gridiron Burger:

  • 5 hamburger patties each weighing 1/3 of a pound
  • 5 beef hotdogs – pay no attention to what parts of the cow are in there
  • 5 brats – sausages not children
  • 20 slices of American cheese – don’t want none of that foreign stuff
  • 8 slices of bacon – seems light on the bacon, no?
  • 8 chicken tenders – why not?
  • 12 oz fries – just to be sure we have enough fat and carbs here
  • Lettuce, tomatoes, pickles – – and – –
  • “Tank Sauce” – whatever that might or might not be
  • All of this is stacked in the middle of a 10-inch hamburger bun

This baby probably has the caloric content ingested by a family in Darfur in a week. But the Cardinals think the Gridiron Burger should present a challenge to their fans.  Anyone who can eat this entire thing in 60 minutes – by himself or herself – will get a free Arizona Cardinals jersey and will get his/her picture displayed on the stadium big screen.  Joey Chestnut,

  • Come on down …!

Finally, since I started this rant with a comment by Bob Molinaro, let me close with another of his observations:

“Up North: Sure, Johnny Manziel threw four interceptions in his debut with the Montreal Alouettes, but that did give him an opportunity to make two tackles.”

But don’t get me wrong, I love sports………



4 thoughts on “All Around The Mulberry Bush Today …”

  1. Hi There.
    What is all this about basketball and football??? This is baseball season and my Braves are ahead of your Nats.
    Just joking. I saw your comment on the girl on the Dubrovnik wall. I could have said more about her, but censored it.
    Seriously, let’s hear more about baseball. The Braves are doing well and the Red Sox are off the scale. And how about those A’s?

    Did you get the Athletic Business publication?

    1. Doyice:

      Welcome aboard. Indeed your Braves are ahead in the NL East – and as I said to you more than a month ago – I think they are going to stay in this race to the end. When the Braves make the playoffs as I think they will, it will be good to see Freddie Freeman there. He has toiled on some bad teams to get the Braves back to the playoffs; he has earned his at-bats there.

      I found the Athletic business site and it has a wide range of interesting stuff. Thanks for the heads-up there.

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