2.18.2006

dumb

I've heard sportscasters say some pretty dumb things, but this has got to land CBC's Brian Williams in the Top Ten All-Time Dumbest.

Moments ago, Shani Davis became the first African American man to win an individual gold medal in a Winter Olympics. Davis took the gold for speed skating, in the 1000-meter event.

Said Williams: "Davis is from the south side of Chicago. He put on a White Sox cap after his race, perhaps some Jim Croce music playing in the background..."

Jim Croce?

Can you think of anything less "south side of Chicago" than Jim Croce?

For those who don't understand the reference, the words "the south side of Chicago" are found in the lyrics of an old pop song. For those who don't understand the stupidity, the song has nothing to do with Chicago. Less than nothing. Ask 100 - no, 1,000 - Chicagoans to reel off a few things their city is known for. I guarantee you none of them will name "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown".

What's more, Davis's mother moved her family to the far north end of Chicago when Shani was 10, to be closer to a skating rink.

Hello, Brian? Here's a dollar. Go buy yourself a metaphor.

18 comments:

Carrie said...

Well that wasn't a very good thing to say obviously. I'll apologize on behalf of Brian Williams. Please know, he doesn't speak for all of us. LOL He's just a talking head on tv :)

But now you know how we Canadians feel when the USA newscasters constantly misrepresent us. I agree, it's highly irritating. ;)

Scott M. said...

Can't be that upsetting, can it? It's just a cutsie reference to a song.

redsock said...

Ha! Doofus.

It's like when moronic baseball announcers say "rock" groups like REO Speedwagon are heavy metal. Maybe this saeason, Tim McCarver can expound on "Fifty Cents".

Hey, guys, it's okay not to know everything. Just stop pretending you're all hip and cool. You sound like dorks.

I'll bet if you asked every single person in Chicago that question -- hell, ask every single person in the United States -- I'd be shocked if even 5 said Chicago reminded them of Jim Croce.

James said...

I've heard sportscasters say some pretty dumb things, but this has got to land CBC's Brian Williams in the Top Ten All-Time Dumbest.

I dunno, I can think of a lot dumber things than mixing up cities and songs... Some that come to mind:

- Sid Rosenberg's referring to Venus Williams as "an animal" and saying that she and Serena had a better chance of posing nude in National Geographic than Playboy.

- Tony Veitch said, of Serena Williams, "Do you know where the apes come from? She's a reminder."

- Rush Limbaugh, of course, has several Top Ten worth comments, such as his famous: I think what we've had here is a little social concern in the NFL. The media has been very desirous that a black quarterback do well. They're interested in black coaches and black quarterbacks doing well ... McNabb got a lot of the credit for the performance of the team that he really didn't deserve.

- Jimmy The Greek also has a famous one from his sportscasting days: (The black athlete) is bred to be the better athlete because, this goes all the way to the Civil War when ... the slave owner would breed his big woman so that he would have a big black kid.

Brian Williams may be ignorant of Chicago, but he's nowhere near Top Ten material.

andrea said...

Okay. I'll be a traitor and admit that I also find Brian Williams a bit too smug for words.

L-girl said...

Ok, wait a second. I'm being completely misinterpreted here.

Carrie: there's no need to apologize on behalf of Brian Williams. I'm not thinking a Canadian misrepresented Americans. Nothing on that scale.

Scott: No. It was not upsetting. It was just dumb. Not upsetting in the least.

James: Obviously, those references aren't just stupid. They're offensive, racist, and downright disgusting. I'm only talking stupid here. Just because the guy made a dumb comment about a black man doesn't mean I think he's racist. But a comment doesn't have to be racist to be dumb!

All I meant was this:

Hey, guys, it's okay not to know everything. Just stop pretending you're all hip and cool. You sound like dorks.

Being as the only person who understood my reaction was my partner, I guess my reaction was too in-joke-y!

I just think it was a really stupid thing to say - that it make him look really foolish and ignorant - but mostly just very, very outdated.

Sorry about that. Carry on. :)

James said...

I suppose I don't find his statement anywhere close to the Top Ten (even leaving out racist stupidity) simply because I know less about Jim Croce than Brian Williams does. ;)

Gazetteer said...

It's all that Bad, Bad Leroy Brown's fault, I think.

But seriously.....I yearn for the days when most Canadians, except for the (very) rare medal winners, came 45th.

Why?

Because the CBC was truly international in it's coverage. We got so much more. Now, it's just like it is NBC North with all this constant focus on the hometown kids crap that is used to front the even sappier hometown heroes corporate advertising super-crap.

Crap.

.

L-girl said...

CBC coverage is so much better than NBC, it's not even funny. Maybe CBC has changed, I wouldn't know, but it still runs rings around NBC up down and backwards. Count yer blessings.

L-girl said...

simply because I know less about Jim Croce than Brian Williams does. ;)

Lucky you. :)

It's strictly "Lite FM" fare. (IMO)

That's why it doesn't exactly go with the housing projects and soul food of the South Side.

Carrie said...

Man, I've been stupid all over the blogosphere for two days now so that might explain my comment and missing the point.

I don't know what's up with me. It's not you, it's me! It really is. LOL

Amateur said...

L-girl, you know my feelings about Brian Williams (Canadian version).

However -- you will not be in for a treat when our other national network, CTV, takes over the Olympic broadcasts on the next contract -- I can't remember if the CBC has one more or not, but then CTV will take over for a while. Ugh.

James said...

It's strictly "Lite FM" fare. (IMO)

That's why it doesn't exactly go with the housing projects and soul food of the South Side.


Still, from my point of view it's on par with calling Mozart "German" or Bach "Classical"... Hardly top-ranking dumbness. I'm sure Williams has managed at least ten dumber things so far these Olympics. :)

L-girl said...

Hardly top-ranking dumbness. I'm sure Williams has managed at least ten dumber things so far these Olympics. :)

Ok, ok, top 25. 30, even. :)

L-girl said...

you will not be in for a treat when our other national network, CTV, takes over the Olympic broadcasts on the next contract

Based on their news and sports delivery, I see that. (Apologies to my friend ALPF.)

Wrye said...

I think the key is, for CTV, think TSN. It'll probably be all hockey all the time.

The Jim Croce reference is extremely odd, because it's very obscure and dated in 2006. So obscure that normally someone making the reference would also know something about Chicago. He's just working waay too hard to make an obscure pop culture reference. This is what Gen X will sound like in our sixties, I'm sure.

One problem is that it's not Jim croce who's from the South side, but bad, bad, LeRoy Brown. And while I've been out of the comedian business for a while, I can't think of a way to string the references together without sounding stupid, because really, the only thing Leroy and Shani have in common is being from the south side. It's not like using Sinatra as shorthand for New York or Elvis for Vegas. Even if the reference was along the lines of

"He may not be badder than old King Kong, but he's still done the south side of Chicago proud"

or

"The [adjective]est man to come out of the south Side of Chicago since LeRoy Brown"

It still sounds pretty dumb. Now if Shani was in a sport that involved badassery or gambling (downhill skiing or boxing, say), you might have something to work with.

(Is the South Side of Chicago even part of "the whole downtown"? Does the song even make sense?)

If this was Japanese TV, they'd just have LeRoy Brown playing in the background everytime Shani appeared on TV, with no explanation, of course :D

Cin said...

This is me.

This is me laughing.

This is me laughing my heinie off.

Thank you for that.

L-girl said...

Cin got it. :)