Ain’t no Saints in Toronto

May 13, 2011

Toronto must be a nearly perfect city.  Nearly perfect, except for its lack of an NFL team to call its own.  Otherwise, why would a Toronto city councilor, and brother to the mayor, be sounding off about bringing in a franchise?  Surely if there were issues related to crime, or the economy, or social services, they would take precedence over a second professional football team.  Wouldn’t they?

Unfortunately for the mayor’s brother, and the mayor’s brother’s brother, Toronto is not getting an NFL team.  Not unless the Bills count, and in a certain sense Toronto already has them, and has since the previous mayor signed a 5 year deal.  That’s as far as it goes though.  This year, next year, and every year for the foreseeable future (go ahead and read that as ‘ten years minimum’).  Some people argue otherwise, but they are simply ignorant, as shown below.

The mayor’s brother’s plan involves either a new stadium built without public money, along with (get this) a monorail.  Don’t worry though, he has a backup plan, which involves simply dynamiting another few hundred feet out of the bottom of the Skydome (which he keeps calling the ‘Rogers Centre’) to add over ten thousand seats.  The number he mentions would make the stadium smaller than most current league stadiums.  Again, he does not offer city funds, just hilarious suggestions.

The coup de grace for this round of nonsense is the suggestion that the Jaguars and Saints might be moved, while neither is for sale.  Sometimes teams are not for sale but in fact they actually may be for sale, if you know what I mean.  The Saints and Jaguars are just not for sale.  Ford has already apologized to a newspaper in Louisiana for even daring to suggest that such a move was possible.

There are a lot of other barriers to an NFL team being owned and operated outside of the U.S.A.  In Toronto, no known buyer exists.  The internet peanut gallery’s favorite suggestion is media giant Rogers, but as a corporation Rogers is not eligible, according to league rules, to own a team.  The other main barriers, aside from no team, no stadium and no owner, are differences in the tax code and advertising considerations, which are referred to here and here.  Of course the show stopper is that Toronto’s little audition with the NFL has gone poorly.

In conclusion, Toronto is perfect now, except for its lack of an NFL team, which it can never have.  Also, the Leafs.  Oh, and–


The Newt*n-Bonds-Geithner Affair (1/2)

April 28, 2011

Among the many wonderful things which I do for the underprivileged people around me, and around other people who are around me, or who were, or one day might be around me, which I do out of the kindness and generosity of my own heart, and not for reasons of self-aggrandizement, or to lord over other people how good I am, and how worthless and mean they are, is liaising between the less fortunate and social institutions whose services those poor folks may wish to take advantage of.  I tell you this by way of an explanation for my absence, and the general quietness of this blog, over the past several months.  The reason is that, in the capacity of liaison for an underprivileged person, I have found myself most unjustly treated and imprisoned, as I shall explain below.

The affair began when one Mr. Newt*n of Alabama was referred to me by the mutual acquaintance of a friend of mine, with a most heart-wrenching problem.  His son, a gifted athlete, bright fellow, and enthusiastic youth, was intent on attending a major College in his area to pursue his noble and pure academic aspirations, but was blocked by poverty and the bureaucracy of the particular league.  I was able, after some finagling, to procure for the young gentleman a generous scholarship, which brought the team just to, but not a dime over, the salary cap.

Somehow the entire thing came to ruin, and Mr. Newt*n and I were arrested for breach of some nuanced technicality that I still don’t pretend to understand, while Young Mr. Newt*n is allowed to keep his freedom only if he sells a case of both Doritos and Miller Lite each week for four years.  I spent nineteen days in a penitentiary, during which a plea arrangement was worked out whereby I would attempt to wrangle some information from a planted cell-mate.  Testimony of this information would excuse me from the rest of my sentence.

I agreed to the plea arrangement, despite my innocence, because if I am even perceived to have harmed the integrity of sport, then I will make amends.  I agree with the United States House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, that the attention of those who lead the free world is best focused on whether celebrities are being honest with their fans.  The cultural conditions that lead the government to focus on cheating in baseball are surely the opposite of the cultural conditions that lead to widespread cheating in the first place – aren’t they?  But I digress.

My new cell mate was the trainer of a man named Bonds, who was alleged by the House Committee to have cheated at baseball intravenously.  We were introduced when I was rudely thrown into what was to be my sixty-four square foot home from then, in early March, until the end of July.  The trainer surprised me right away with his classy clothes and demeanor.

He was dressed in the finest suit that I have ever laid eyes on.  It shone in the flat fluorescent light of the cell, and instantly improved my mood.  I felt even better a few minutes later, when my cell mate and intended victim had welcomed me and helped me to settle in.  He introduced himself as Greg Anderson, and offered to help me with some of my investments.  I was quite unsure how to take this at first, and told him that my only interest in the world was baseball, which he responded to with only a subtle and quickly covered disappointment.

He indulged me in discussion about the sport for some minutes, but he appeared not only to know nothing whatever about it, but also not to be interested.  Not in the pennant races, the hall of fame balloting, the Pujols contract extension, or anything else related to Major League Baseball.  I tried comparing Pujols to the alleged Barry Bonds, and mentioned even baseball as exercise, and feigned a desire to look after my own physical condition, now that I was rotting away in jail.  Anderson did not flinch at any mention of Bonds, except that he thought I was talking about China at one point, apparently, and he seemed quite ignorant of either the techniques or importance of exercise.

I was baffled.

***To be continued***