Bill Simmons: Good Luck With Your Life.

joe dokes

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Reverend said:
 
Remember most of America's incredibly confused reaction when Springsteen penned that anti-war piece for the NYTimes about Iraq?
 
That confusion goes back at least to "Born in the USA."
 

Reverend

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joe dokes said:
 
That confusion goes back at least to "Born in the USA."
 
Oh of course--that's why it was so funny when he explicitly resolved it.
 
Edit: Not that the lyrics to Born in the USA are terribly confounding...
 

Leather

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Reverend said:
Wait--King?
 
Was that intentional or not? It's funny either way--please don't edit it!
 
I don't honestly know how much Simmons talks about Springsteen.  Frankly, if what is quoted in the Magary piece is all there is, I don't have much of a beef with him (one passing reference in 15 years of work is hardly being obnoxious).  
 
King is the worst offender.  For one, he only started talking about Springsteen about 3 years ago, and then all of a sudden he was Super Fan #1 who had caught Springsteen back in the 70s and blah blah blah blah.  It was so disingenuous and phony, like "Ya, you are such a big fan that you saw him once in his early glory years, then never bothered to catch him again, despite living in New Jersey, until 35 years later.  But now you are qualified to lecture everyone on why they should like Bruce Springsteen."  
 
It was the worst, like someone who was born in Connecticut, never became a Red Sox fan, and then deciding at age 50 to start pretending to be a life-long die hard fan after 2004.  
 
Oh wait.
 

Shelterdog

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Reverend said:
 
Oh of course--that's why it was so funny when he explicitly resolved it.
 
Edit: Not that the lyrics to Born in the USA are terribly confounding...
 
They're not but it's also not surprising that a song with a soaring patriotic anthem and flags and blue jeans on album covers and in the video gets misinterpreted by people who-predictably-don't listen to all the lyrics.
 

Leather

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Shelterdog said:
 
They're not but it's also not surprising that a song with a soaring patriots anthem and flags and blue jeans on album covers and in the video gets misinterpreted by people who-predictably-don't listen to all the lyrics.
 
...In the middle of a resurgent cold war and released a couple of months before the Summer Olympics were held in the United States.
 
Springsteen and his management knew what they were doing with that cover, they aren't entirely blameless in attracting the jingoist nitwits.  
 
Jingoist nitwits still be nitwits, tho.
 

joe dokes

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drleather2001 said:
 
...In the middle of a resurgent cold war and released a couple of months before the Summer Olympics were held in the United States.
 
Springsteen and his management knew what they were doing with that cover, they aren't entirely blameless in attracting the jingoist nitwits.  
 
Jingoist nitwits still be nitwits, tho.
 
and their money still be green, too.....
 

DJnVa

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joe dokes said:
 
and their money still be green, too.....
 
 
That's what's brilliant. At the end of the day, everything was timed to create maximum $$$.
 

curly2

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drleather2001 said:
I mean, from what I understand, Springsteen doesn't even like sports!
 
That's pretty obvious from "Glory Days." No one who knows anything about baseball would refer to a pitch as a "speedball."
 

Leskanic's Thread

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The "Speedball" line is the second worst "I don't know anything about this sport but I'm gonna reference it in a song anyway" lyric, after the Postal Service's "like a goalie tending net in the third-quarter."  Ugh.
 
Sorry for the derail.  It's late, and both teams I wanted to win today lost 2-1.
 

moondog80

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jsinger121 said:
[media]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKgr0teW8F4[/media]
 
That was planned, right?  I mean, they cut to him about 5 seconds after the pick is announced and that happens to be the exact moment he pumps his fist and then pretends to be embarrassed, realizing immediately that he was on camera?  A little too perfect.
 
I dunno.  Maybe I've watched too much pro wrestling.
 

BS_SoxFan

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I really enjoy Zach Lowe and his podcasts and columns and I really think he brings the best out in Bill. I may never be able to forgive him, however, for adding "asset" to Bill's lexicon as a way to describe an NBA player. During Simmons' and Lowe's podcast yesterday they had to have used "asset" a combined 50 times. Someone needs to give these guys a thesaurus.
 

Leather

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JohntheBaptist said:
I think "speedball" was intentional though, to force the whole stylized nostalgia vibe. May be giving him too much credit?
 
It has to be intentional in that he simply liked the way it sounded, at the very least, over "fastball" or "curveball".  I find it beyond credulity that a 34 year old, relatively intelligent, socially aware man, who spent a lifetime working almost exclusively with other guys, wouldn't know the term for "fastball".   I mean, even John Kerry ("Manny Ortez") has to know that when the pitcher throws it really fast, it's called a "fastball". 
 
That is: I think it's worth rolling your eyes over as a stylistic choice, but saying "Dude, what a poseur, he doesn't know what a fastball is!" is taking it a bit far.
 

Spacemans Bong

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Speedball's an old-timey word for a fastball; not common but I've seen it in several books and heard Studs Terkel use it in the Ken Burns series. i'm not a massive Bruce fan but it sounds like the kind of word he'd drop into a song to help evoke a time and place. Dragging out those e's makes it sound better in the song.
 
Just to build on leather's point, he was a 34 year old, relatively intelligent, socially aware, working-class (I mention this because he wasn't sailing with the Kennedys) man who grew up in the Northeast during a time when baseball was flat-out the number one sport in the country. He's pretty clearly played baseball in the past - think of all the terrible motions you've seen in movies (great movie, but Chelcie Ross in Major League is truly playing the part of a pitcher) and watch the Glory Days video. It's a little awkward but he looks like a man who's pitched a baseball before.
 
I've got no doubt that between the things he's really interested in and his tour schedule that he's not too up on Derek Jeter's lifetime batting average, but he knows what a fastball is.
 

Silverdude2167

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Bill should never talk about soccer, ever. You're right Bill, Klinsmann had no idea he should use the teams speed down the flanks. That is why Fabian Johnson and Yedlin stayed home, never ventured forward and were not responsible for 40% of the goals scored....
 

SoxFanInPdx

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Silverdude2167 said:
Bill should never talk about soccer, ever. You're right Bill, Klinsmann had no idea he should use the teams speed down the flanks. That is why Fabian Johnson and Yedlin stayed home, never ventured forward and were not responsible for 40% of the goals scored....
 
Barnwell was about as bad as Simmons. Both have zero business/knowledge to attempt to dissect the game.
 

southshoresoxfan

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Barnwell is the worst sportswriter going. He plays the smartest guy in the room schtick despite not even being in the stratosphere knowledge wise when it comes to deep football discussion.
 

mabrowndog

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SoxFanInPdx said:
Barnwell was about as bad as Simmons. Both have zero business/knowledge to attempt to dissect the game.
 
Zero is still better than where this guy registers on the soccer expertise scale:
 

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SoxFanInPdx said:
 
Barnwell was about as bad as Simmons. Both have zero business/knowledge to attempt to dissect the game.
 
I don't know soccer so can you elaborate? Barnwell generally forms complete sentences and that's about where my ability to judge a soccer analyst ends.
 

nattysez

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To Simmons's credit, he appears to have "broken" the news that Melo is seriously considering the Lakers (which has since been confirmed by Woj and other reliable sources).
 

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Shelterdog said:
 
I don't know soccer so can you elaborate? Barnwell generally forms complete sentences and that's about where my ability to judge a soccer analyst ends.
 
Basically, just dropped names on what clubs some of Belgium National Team players also play with. I'm convinced the man's knowledge only comes from playing FIFA. Simmons brought up what players from the MLS that might feature in the next World Cup and Barnwell had zero interest or know-how on what domestic players the USMNT even have now besides Dempsey. He's a hack.
 

NatetheGreat

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http://grantland.com/features/carmelo-anthony-new-york-knicks-legacy/
 
Simmons' article on Carmelo was very solid I thought. Fair without saying totally obvious stuff, backed up with research, and had some actual goddamn structure besides some faux-mailbag bullshit. Just one more sign that "basketball Simmons" and "every other sport Simmons" are basically two different writers at this point, and while the latter is mostly execrable, the former is still worth reading.
 

luckiestman

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I just listened to his latest podcast with Boogie Cousins and I thought it was entertaining. Cousins thinks Rondo is the best PG in the league and also has a strong dislike for CP3. 
 

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In this week's podcast with Kevin Wildes, Simmons:
  • Endorsed the idea of a Starbucks Black Card that would allow the bearer to jump the line in exchange for paying an extra $400 per year.
  • Admitted that he has walked to the front of a long line at Starbucks and offered to pay for the drink of the first person in line if they'll add his drunk to their order.
  • Talked about his son's visit from the Tooth Fairy and said that he got $10.
He's officially become one of Those People.  When the peasants are marching with their pitchforks, the Sports Guy Estate is going to be near the top of their list.
 

Merkle's Boner

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DLew On Roids said:
In this week's podcast with Kevin Wildes, Simmons:

  • Endorsed the idea of a Starbucks Black Card that would allow the bearer to jump the line in exchange for paying an extra $400 per year.
  • Admitted that he has walked to the front of a long line at Starbucks and offered to pay for the drink of the first person in line if they'll add his drunk to their order.
  • Talked about his son's visit from the Tooth Fairy and said that he got $10.
He's officially become one of Those People.  When the peasants are marching with their pitchforks, the Sports Guy Estate is going to be near the top of their list.
I'm an unabashed Simmons fan, but let's not forget the guy went to Brunswick in Greenwich. He is not a kid from the mean streets of Southie.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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DLew On Roids said:
In this week's podcast with Kevin Wildes, Simmons:
  • Endorsed the idea of a Starbucks Black Card that would allow the bearer to jump the line in exchange for paying an extra $400 per year.
  • Admitted that he has walked to the front of a long line at Starbucks and offered to pay for the drink of the first person in line if they'll add his drunk to their order.
  • Talked about his son's visit from the Tooth Fairy and said that he got $10.
He's officially become one of Those People.  When the peasants are marching with their pitchforks, the Sports Guy Estate is going to be near the top of their list.
 
When I first read Simmons, I never found his writing to be particularly great. In fact, I thought that many people could have written the same columns (which is evident by the number of Simmons clones that have sprouted up in the last 20 years). But the thing that kept me coming back, to both his DC days and his ESPN days, was that he was easy to relate to and he was likable. With the success of Bill Simmons, Inc. I don't expect him to be relatable and if he acted like the same dude from Charlestown, he'd be a fraud. However, I didn't expect him to become so damn unlikable. And I think that's the thing that separates Simmons from other online writers and podcasters, Simmons just seems like a dick.
 
I don't know any of these people (nor do I know Simmons) but through their writings they don't come off as assholes. Joe Posnanski seems like a good guy. For all of his bluster, Drew Magary seems like a decent guy. Same with Will Leitch, Chuck Klosterman (he's more of a book writer, but you get my point) and others. Simmons not so much. One of the things that got George W. Bush elected is that people said that he's the type of guy they'd want to grab a beer with. I don't know if that's a good way of choosing a president, but I think it's a good way of choosing a writer. I'd love having a beer with Posnanski and to be truthful, I'd probably have a beer with Simmons (lucky him!) but I don't think I'd enjoy it as much.
 

johnmd20

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DLew On Roids said:
In this week's podcast with Kevin Wildes, Simmons:
  • Endorsed the idea of a Starbucks Black Card that would allow the bearer to jump the line in exchange for paying an extra $400 per year.
  • Admitted that he has walked to the front of a long line at Starbucks and offered to pay for the drink of the first person in line if they'll add his drunk to their order.
  • Talked about his son's visit from the Tooth Fairy and said that he got $10.
He's officially become one of Those People.  When the peasants are marching with their pitchforks, the Sports Guy Estate is going to be near the top of their list.
 
The Starbucks thing is eon's worse than the Tooth Fairy ten dollars, although he shouldn't have said either. 
 
I mean, even if he thought that, it's bad. But the fact that he actually said it on a Podcast and then decided to not edit it out means he's lost touch with reality. I certainly don't begrudge his success and I think he deserves it, but he's sounds like Kim Kardashian when he says something like that. It's the opposite of relatable.
 
If the line at Starbucks makes you so annoyed Bill, make your coffee at home. It isn't that difficult.
 

URI

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DLew On Roids said:
  • Endorsed the idea of a Starbucks Black Card that would allow the bearer to jump the line in exchange for paying an extra $400 per year.
I know a certain sportwriter who would agree to that as long as he didn't have to pay the $400. Gods shouldn't have to pay fees.
 

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johnmd20 said:
 
The Starbucks thing is eon's worse than the Tooth Fairy ten dollars, although he shouldn't have said either. 
 
I mean, even if he thought that, it's bad. But the fact that he actually said it on a Podcast and then decided to not edit it out means he's lost touch with reality. I certainly don't begrudge his success and I think he deserves it, but he's sounds like Kim Kardashian when he says something like that. It's the opposite of relatable.
 
If the line at Starbucks makes you so annoyed Bill, make your coffee at home. It isn't that difficult.
 
Their both bad for the same reason: it's difficult to tell whether his ostensible point (that long lines suck/kids get money from toothfairies) is more important than the ulterior motive of him just talking about his ability to spend lots of money. 
 

johnmd20

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drleather2001 said:
 
Their both bad for the same reason: it's difficult to tell whether his ostensible point (that long lines suck/kids get money from toothfairies) is more important than the ulterior motive of him just talking about his ability to spend lots of money. 
 
What you give your kid for losing a tooth is way different than basically saying, "I'm rich and, therefore, you don't deserve to be ahead of me in line."
 

JayMags71

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Having the tooth fairy give your kid >$1 for a tooth is just showing off. Strolling to the front of the coffee line because you don't want to wait (and admitting you'll pay stupid money for the privilege of doing so) is just plain selfish.

Of course, when condition your kid to expect ten bucks a tooth, you're perpetuating the cycle.
 

Detts

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DLew On Roids said:
In this week's podcast with Kevin Wildes, Simmons:
  • Endorsed the idea of a Starbucks Black Card that would allow the bearer to jump the line in exchange for paying an extra $400 per year.
  • Admitted that he has walked to the front of a long line at Starbucks and offered to pay for the drink of the first person in line if they'll add his drunk to their order.
  • Talked about his son's visit from the Tooth Fairy and said that he got $10.
He's officially become one of Those People.  When the peasants are marching with their pitchforks, the Sports Guy Estate is going to be near the top of their list.
 
 

johnmd20

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JayMags71 said:
Having the tooth fairy give your kid >$1 for a tooth is just showing off. Strolling to the front of the coffee line because you don't want to wait (and admitting you'll pay stupid money for the privilege of doing so) is just plain selfish.

Of course, when condition your kid to expect ten bucks a tooth, you're perpetuating the cycle.
 
The Tooth Fairy gives an average of almost 4 bucks a tooth. Everyone Is Keeping Up With the Jones'
 
So 10 bucks is a lot but it's not an breathtakingly large amount. And that's between Simmons and his family. He shouldn't have said anything but it's not quite the same as saying he's rich and shouldn't have to stand in line for coffee because of it. 
 

luckiestman

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He just wants über pricing for Starbucks. Reading that idea in print is worse than listening to it because the guest starts calling him on it right during the show. Isn't this also a comedy show? It was thrown in there with nba bullpens and boston celtics football jerseys.

As a side note, why is it fine for the market to price everything but suggesting the market price wait times is just beyond the pale and so privileged? Especially at the airport where things are already rationed this way.
 

luckiestman

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ifmanis5 said:
I don't have kids, what's the going rate for a tooth these days?
My kids didn't lose any teeth yet but anyone listening to a podcast on a smartphone with a data plan talking about 10 bucks for your kids tooth being "too much" is good stuff
 

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John Marzano Olympic Hero said:
I don't know any of these people (nor do I know Simmons) but through their writings they don't come off as assholes. Joe Posnanski seems like a good guy. For all of his bluster, Drew Magary seems like a decent guy. Same with Will Leitch, Chuck Klosterman (he's more of a book writer, but you get my point) and others. Simmons not so much. One of the things that got George W. Bush elected is that people said that he's the type of guy they'd want to grab a beer with. I don't know if that's a good way of choosing a president, but I think it's a good way of choosing a writer. I'd love having a beer with Posnanski and to be truthful, I'd probably have a beer with Simmons (lucky him!) but I don't think I'd enjoy it as much.
 
Yup.
 
Ralphwiggum said:
To me the biggest thing I took away from the Rolling Stone article is that BS seems to have developed a massive ego.  As a guy who goes back to his Digital City days, I think Bill is a lot of things and many of the criticisms in this thread are warranted, but I guess I never took him for an egomaniac.  He's obviously accomplished a ton and it is probably hard not to develop a bit of an ego given his position at ESPN, but he no longer seems like a guy who I would want to sit and have a beer with and talk sports.
 

URI

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luckiestman said:
As a side note, why is it fine for the market to price everything but suggesting the market price wait times is just beyond the pale and so privileged? Especially at the airport where things are already rationed this way.
Why should he have to wait in line with the hoi polli? Don't they know he's super important and also is willing to pay to show how super important he is?
 

URI

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Flying and getting a coffee before work?

You're right. No difference. But you're also working under the assumption that I think TSA pre is a good thing, rather than a stupid thing.
 

DJnVa

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I don't fly a hell of a lot, so it's only been at a few airports, but isn't the TSA thing a separate line that doesn't slow down all the cattle in the regular line?
 

URI

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DrewDawg said:
I don't fly a hell of a lot, so it's only been at a few airports, but isn't the TSA thing a separate line that doesn't slow down all the cattle in the regular line?
No. It's the same thing. Duh.
 

luckiestman

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URI said:
Flying and getting a coffee before work?

You're right. No difference. But you're also working under the assumption that I think TSA pre is a good thing, rather than a stupid thing.
 
He was talking about strabucks at the airport. TSA pre is a pretty close comp. 
 

luckiestman

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DrewDawg said:
I don't fly a hell of a lot, so it's only been at a few airports, but isn't the TSA thing a separate line that doesn't slow down all the cattle in the regular line?
 
Think about this a little more. 
 

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URI said:
Flying and getting a coffee before work?

You're right. No difference. But you're also working under the assumption that I think TSA pre is a good thing, rather than a stupid thing.
I'm working under the assumption you don't think people are assholes for paying $80 to more or less skip the security line at the airport.
 

leetinsley38

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kenneycb said:
What's the difference between that and paying for TSA Pre?
Yeah, basically the same concept happens with airlines (first class), hotels and car rentals (separate speedy check in lines) for people with "status", wouldn't surprise if Sbux did something like this. There are apps now to auction off a public parking place.