Re: NFL

1

Actually, I rather like football.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 8:50 AM
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Have you seen a doctor about all those concussions?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 8:54 AM
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The Frontline on CTE and concussions is over-the-top enraging for about 45,000 different reasons. The NFL, the suits with offices in NYC, are scum.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:11 AM
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My Peyton animus goes back to his college days, when the Vols used to beat up on my alma mater. But I, too, find myself trying to comprehend strange feelings of non-hatred for him.

I have an old acquaintance, now a Facebook friend, whose son died in a fashion that was apparently related to football concussions. He's still a football fan. I figure this gives me permission to still enjoy the sport, as long as they are making a real effort to clean it up, which I think they are.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:40 AM
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I still like boxing, even though the concussion-ness has been brutally evident there for far longer. It's not really defensible. 3 gets it absolutely right.

I never was really a Peyton hater (nor really a fan) but the comeback story is pretty great, and it's always nice to see the Patriots lose. I was also never really a 49ers fan or hater even back in the day, but an annoying acquaintance is going too 9ers crazy and that Seattle stadium is awesome and so Incan feel the rage of a rooting interest building FUCK YOU SAN FRANCISCO GAME OF THE CENTURY.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:57 AM
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"At this stage in his late career, really for the whole season-plus he's been with Denver, Manning makes being a midlevel IT manager look like a form of ruthless conquest. It's as if he wrote a script to install automatic PC updates, and somehow it made him the god-emperor of hell. This is how he plays football: He goes out every week with a graphing calculator and a stack of forms, and he just audits teams to death."


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:04 AM
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I find people's lack of commitment to hating Peyton Manning truly incomprehensible: generally whiny, horribly misshapen, makes huge mistakes in big moments and then blames teammates for losses, a near-perfect example of soulless corporatism, massively overprivileged since birth. He's J.D. McCoy, only without the great arm and floppy hair.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:15 AM
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3 is correct. 7 is correct. Also, do you even realize how attractive Tom Brady is?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:22 AM
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The league's management should all burn in hell of course but I really don't see a problem with football if people know what they're getting into. Loads of people do jobs and/or hobbies that are just as or more dangerous and for a lot less money.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:26 AM
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In fairness, I suppose J.D. McCoy's character must be based on Peyton Manning, so credit to PeyPey for getting there for first. But J.D. still has the floppy hair and a better arm. Which I guess just means he's actually Eli.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:32 AM
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I'd be way more interested in the NFL if their logos looked like these. (I would no fooling buy merchandise with the Seahawks logo on it.)


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:33 AM
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The critique in 6 would be a lot more convincing if Manning weren't the only one who had managed it. It's like the criticisms of Barcelona that say, oh, they just pass it around until someone walks it into the net. Great! Sounds easy! Now you do it.

As for 7, in these very archives, I make the same points. And yet I find myself softening. Time to vote Republican, I guess.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:38 AM
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7: You forgot "Republican".


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:38 AM
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It's like the criticisms of Barcelona

Wait, did you just make a *soccer* reference? A positive one, even? I don't even know who you are anymore.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:40 AM
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In fairness, I suppose J.D. McCoy's character must be based on Peyton Manning,

I would have guessed this is the real McCoy.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:41 AM
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Also, Vince.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:46 AM
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3 is correct and I believe that in 50 years we will all be viewed as utter barbarians for tolerating contact sports like football. That said, NFL Red Zone has absolutely re-awakened my interest in NFL football over the past two years. It's one of the greatest applications of TV ever; the finish of the eary games during that mid-Atlantic snow day in December was riveting. My interest in the playoffs this year is so-so; watching one game at time is boring as hell, and no personally compelling teams left.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:48 AM
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I only what college football, because I like my sports with two types of exploitation.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:52 AM
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The other aspect of football that I like is that my one son and I both like the strategy and probability aspects of it, which via the structure of the game comes up quite frequently. So if he's around we geek out on that.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:53 AM
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Moby typos like a Cornhusker offensive lineman.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 10:54 AM
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A positive one, even?

Come, watch me torrent PSG games. One of my first posts back was going to be about how I only watch soccer these days (true!), comparing tiki-taka to the west coast offense. It was going to be brilliant (false!), but I didn't think anyone would believe me.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:00 AM
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Tom Brady is the one who's fucking Giselle? He's very attractive.


Posted by: Bave | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:05 AM
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I lived in Tom Brady's hometown for several years, and once went to the barber to the Brady family. The place was like a shrine to Tom. Pictures of our handsome young man *everywhere*. Haircut was fine. Pretty sure the barber was drunk, but he was gracious enough to offer me a drink.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:11 AM
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D'oh.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:11 AM
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I must say that I don't really care if anyone likes or doesn't like football, which is my least favorite of the three major sports anyway, but I find abandoning football to watch soccer like a fucking Euro* about 10x as gross as anything Peyton Manning's ever done.

*exceptions made to animus if you are already a Euro, or Latino.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:27 AM
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Also I feel like the Red Zone is somehow cheating. It is fun to watch though.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:28 AM
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27

I started using Ronaldo's hair product, too.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:30 AM
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my least favorite of the three major sports

I shouldn't rise to this bait, but if you prefer baseball to football, you either have a Dominican houseboy (good for you) or you just set fire to a cross on somebody's lawn (makes me a little judgy). Tell us about yourself.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:41 AM
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28 is right. Also, basketball is hard to watch because of the squeaky shoe nose.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:43 AM
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The squeaky shoe nose sounds annoying but looks hilarious. Ha ah, shoe nose! Squeaking!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:53 AM
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Aren't the three major sports in LA Dodgers baseball, Lakers basketball, and Angels baseball? Followed by Clippers basketball and only then Kings hockey?

Are there people whose loyalties followed the Rams to Missouri, or the Traitors back to Oakland?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:55 AM
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The Rams got that Ohio stank on them from way back in the day.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:57 AM
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Are there people whose loyalties followed the Rams to Missouri

Adam Carolla claims to be that person, but I think it's an affectation.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:08 PM
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But I know the world is full of haters. Haters who can't take it to the next level.

(from the thread linked in 14)


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:12 PM
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35

||

OT but from another thread:

Does anyone have tips for how to negotiate a starting salary when the employer is state government and the job is unionized. I know the pay scale and the upper limit of what that grade can be paid.

|>


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:17 PM
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Reading that thread inspired me to check youtube for the vomiting marathoner; grainy footage went up a while ago.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:17 PM
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I guess that football matters a lot here, but I think of the Patriots as sort of the regional team. I think of the Red Sox, Celtics and Bruins as being Boston teams. As a public transit person that affects my passive support.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:19 PM
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31 -- judging from local sports talk radio, it's Lakers, USC football, and Dodgers, in that order, despite the recent woes of the first two. Personally I rank the Dodgers first and don't care at all about USC football. I don't know anyone other than Adam Carolla who kept up Rams fandom, they were never that popular when they were here. There are a LOT of people, mostly Mexican, who have kept up Raiders fandom, a good portion of the "black hole" drives up from LA.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:20 PM
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I never formed strong conference-oriented prejudices for the NFL or NBA like I did for NL vs. AL in baseball, but it seems rare for me to not have some reason to loathe most of the teams that make it out of the first round of the AFC playoffs.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:22 PM
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40

31 -> they were never that popular when they were here.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:30 PM
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The problem with football is that it's so fucking complicated. I do like it but I find it bizarre that it's so overwhelmingly the most popular sport in the US since you have to be super deep in the weeds to know what's actually going on on any given play or why it worked. I mean there are some people who know enough to watch games that way but what, at most 10% of fans could meaningfully weigh in on the pluses or minuses of, say, "Cover 4" or how it was modified on any single play, which is just the kind of beginner's level for barely understanding what's going on.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:31 PM
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42

Ogged liking soccer is just wrong and disconcerting.


Posted by: David the Unfogged Commenter | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:32 PM
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43

I watched a lifetime's worth of NFL from '69 to '75, and just a game here and there (including the odd SB) since then. It is still important to me that the Washington Imposters lose, though.

College football, especially in Griz stadium, is a pretty good way to spend a crisp fall afternoon. I've been to a game over in Bozeman, and while that's my team, and I don't have a problem with men wearing yellow, it just doesn't have the same magic.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:39 PM
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35: I was on a similar scale, but I never tried to negotiate. I know my current employers pay scales have an upper limit that is there for shits and giggles. The real upper limit for anybody new is half way better the lower limit and the upper limit. This is probably not a universal rule and thus not helpful. Sorry.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:48 PM
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41 is true in some respects, not in others. Even if you know things about coverage, it would be pretty hard to apply that knowledge when watching a game on TV. Other aspects of the game are discernible -- the line play, the competence of skill players, the ability of the quarterback to make fast decisions and simple things like pure passing ability. And all of those things are actually quite important, if not the most determinative factors in who wins and who loses.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:49 PM
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I take back my apology. That's actually very useful for me. And if I started apologizing for typos, I'd be in bad shape today.

better s/b between


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:52 PM
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Does anyone have tips for how to negotiate a starting salary when the employer is state government and the job is unionized.

Do you know that it's negotiable? For us it's not. If you lateral to our dept from another agency there's a set formula for credit for years of experience and such.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:53 PM
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So you might not know the specific change in coverage which is causing the quarterback to call an audible -- even if you could recognize it, you wouldn't be able to see it -- but you can easily discern that the quarterback is calling an audible, due either to a change in coverage or a show of blitz, or both. And that decision may or may not be determinative as to the outcome of the play, depending on whether individual defensive players anticipate the play or simply beat the guy opposite them.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:53 PM
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27: are you wearing his underwear too?

(And why PSG? Other than Zlatan!, of course.)


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:58 PM
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Further to 47, assuming it's negotiable, the first thing I'd do is start googling around to find what people in that department are getting paid so you can make reasonable demands and know for a fact if you're getting lowballed.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 12:59 PM
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I always liked Manning better than Brady. I hold against Brady that he owed his starting position on a well-stocked team to the injury of another good quarterback, and an interview I once saw in which he came across as arrogant. But he's also an excellent quarterback with impressive nerves who makes really good decisions, and probably the closest thing to Joe Montana that I've seen since Joe Montana.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:01 PM
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The problem with football is that it's so fucking complicated.

As I have said here before: Intellectuals like baseball because football is too complicated.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:02 PM
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I've mostly given up on football, because of concussions and simple lack of time

I know, between the head injuries and the time commitment, it's just not as easy to muster much enthusiasm for cheering on the rapists and other violent criminals on the field. Maybe if the Redskins changed their name to the Racists I could be drawn back.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:09 PM
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Also, the game in which Brady's Patriots beat the Raiders to appear in their first Super Bowl win -- I think that was the 2001-2002 season -- was a travesty. The NFL should pay its officials better and police them more thoroughly. Or maybe it's doing that now.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:10 PM
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I like watching skiing, which is possibly simplest sport second only to running. It sucks to be a ski race spectator in the US though.


Posted by: Britta | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:16 PM
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Other than Zlatan!

Just this. I am a new and simple soccer fan.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:23 PM
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54 I watched the last minutes of that game, beginning just a few plays before The Play. What impressed me was how utterly and totally the Raiders seemed to come apart after what they thought was a bad call.

(For those who don't follow such things, here's the wiki explanation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tuck_Rule_Game#The_.22tuck_rule.22_call).


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:30 PM
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you have to be super deep in the weeds to know what's actually going on on any given play

This is wrong, for the reasons text notes, and the complexity is a feature, not a bug: you can geek out just as much as you like, or you can watch to see big collisions. But I appreciate your comment, because now I have:

Robert Halford: likes: (Dominicans OR Klan) hates: (feeling like someone is smarter than he is). Keep 'em coming!


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:33 PM
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59

I can't believe that the post doesn't say, "If I had a son, he'd look like Colin."


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:37 PM
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Also, basketball is hard to watch because of the squeaky shoe nose.

This is like disliking acoustic guitar, 12-string variety, because of the squeaky strings sound.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:41 PM
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53 made me laugh.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 1:46 PM
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62

I have nothing against acoustic guitars as long as nobody plays them.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 2:08 PM
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47: I think that I have to emphasize my years of experience in a similar role. That could be argued based on title.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 2:14 PM
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Actually, I rather like acoustic guitars.

You know, etc.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 2:16 PM
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44: I meant the upper limit if I were to stay in that job without a promotion. So, I supposed I could ask for halfway between the middle and the top.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 2:16 PM
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50: Hard to find. The person who would be my boss was out sick. I got a call from her boss.

She told me that the primary criterion was the number of years in service, that I should make sure that the years I've been in a similar role are clear. They also demanded my pay stubs which are much lower than even the entry-level state pay.
She also told me to ask for what I wanted. It's HR and not the hiring manager to makes the actual offer.

So, I'm inclined to let them give me a number, then ask for something above the half way mark, maybe at the 3/4 point and then split the difference.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 2:22 PM
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57: I didn't watch the game that closely -- I was in a room full of people who kept talking -- but it was a terrible call, among others.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 2:34 PM
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52 is reasonable, but I think it's dated. Baseball is now perceived as too dorky for today's discerning intellectual; they tend IME to prefer football or the NBA to get that sweet demotic taste that only pro sports can provide. (Or, for those who are both aspirational and insecure enough to be overly invested in hating other Americans, soccer).


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 2:56 PM
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The critique in 6 is meant as praise, not critique.

Like gswift, I don't have that much of a problem with the injuries to NFL players, who know what they're getting into and are extremely well compensated for their risk. OTOH, I think the way college players are pressured/encouraged to sacrifice their educations for a 4% chance of an NFL career and a 96% chance of being left with nothing but brain damage is pretty disgusting.


Posted by: dz | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 2:58 PM
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Hey, I just watch soccer because NBC decided I should. Who really hates America?


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 3:01 PM
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71

Osama Bin Laden's children? Natilo Paennim?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 3:03 PM
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72

I think you just made a discovery.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 3:20 PM
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OTOH, I think the way college players are pressured/encouraged to sacrifice their educations for a 4% chance of an NFL career and a 96% chance of being left with nothing but brain damage is pretty disgusting.

Now, apply to i-1.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 3:29 PM
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The true story of my turn to soccer should appeal to your sympathy for materialist analysis, Halford. Having moved around enough that regional fandom seems a little silly, and being without cable TV, I turned to the most convenient free outlet for sports, which is ESPN3, online. They carry things like cricket, rugby, and soccer. I tried to get into the former two, but the learning curve was just too steep. Soccer was just the easiest, in terms of access and intelligibility, and then it grew on me. Having typed that out, I think I'm having a successful arranged marriage with soccer.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 3:42 PM
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75

I feel the same way as ogged about football these days, but in the past I've generally liked it better than other sports precisely because it's so complicated and bureaucratic.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 3:55 PM
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76

On topic.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 4:01 PM
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77

Hmm 74 is an appealing story.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 4:26 PM
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I also overcame my Manning-hatred, in large part because a good friend of mine in grad school was a huge Peyton fan, and she's the kind of person whose enthusiasm is attractive rather than off-putting.


Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 5:10 PM
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77: Unlike, my story, which is that in the supercharged fern bar world of 1980s yuppies it was clear that pretending to like soccer was what the smoothest power players were doing, and then even with the fading of that scene my massive ego-defense mechanisms and inability to distinguish faux cosmopolitanism from the real manly thing has compelled me to continue to have a shallow, mannered interest in soccer. Plus all the other suburban SUV families were doing it!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 5:56 PM
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Thanks JP. I respect honesty.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 6:20 PM
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I started a soccer aficionado club among my cohort when they were more easily assembled, with the explicit understanding that I knew nothing about soccer, but wanted a reason to watch sports and drink beer in the morning. We picked teams out of a hat. I got Liverpool for my Premier League team, and I don't remember which Championship League team I picked because we never wound up watching any of those games. But it was an excellent club while it lasted, and I am a Liverpool man for life.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 7:22 PM
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71: All of my anarchist friends, plus some of my other various acquaintances, would be well chuffed if I suddenly manifested a sincere and aggressive interest in association football. Honestly though, it's just not that compelling. I can sort of watch American football with some not-completely-feigned degree of interest, but that's about it. Everything else is equally tedious. I do try to keep up with who the fascists and antifa support, respectively, of course, just in case I'm ever accosted on the street late at night by hooligans in Europe, like the incident Bill Buford relates at the beginning of Among the Thugs.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 7:27 PM
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Hey, I just watch soccer because NBC decided I should.

I was skeptical when they won the Premier League contract but holy shit their coverage is so much better than Fox's it's not even funny.

Now if I could just get BeINSports in HD... (And Bundelsiga coverage...)


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 8:25 PM
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84

I briefly considered getting cable/satellite to watch some games, until I realized I needed four different channels to watch various things I'd want to watch.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 8:52 PM
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I like (watching) sports, but I refuse to get cable because of how much of the bill goes to sports coverage. There's just no way that could possibly be worth it for me. Even if you're really into, like, soccer, cycling, hockey and, I dunno, Big Ten football, still like half of your cable bill is going to pay for channels you have no interest in.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 8:55 PM
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86

Also, isn't european soccer particularly easy to find streams for?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 8:56 PM
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84: Yeah, but it's worth watching games on BeIN just for Ray Hudson.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 8:56 PM
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I am totally going to beat the rush and get into cricket.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 8:58 PM
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86: Yeah, but how many of us speak either Arabic or Polish?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 8:59 PM
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Can't talk. Watching cricket. New Zealand is just shelling this Indian bowler, man. Brutal.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:02 PM
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88: As with so many things, Brian Phillips was there before you.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:02 PM
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Oh yeah, and ogged: since you love Zlatan! (and who doesn't, really), a present for you.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:05 PM
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91: there's a cricket bar right down the street from our old apartment. By the evidence I still have some time to swoop in before a real bandwagon forms.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:08 PM
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Speaking of niche sports, a new city council member just tweeted about hockey tickets he has for sale. Seems a bit strange.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:12 PM
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95

Impeach!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:14 PM
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96

He's offering the tickets at face value, so I don't think it's a case of potential bribery or anything.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:17 PM
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Maybe he got them for free.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:52 PM
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Nobody replied to it. At least not on Twitter.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 9:59 PM
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This is some sick shit I'm about to confess, and I should probably go presidential for it, but the concussion/injury stuff hasn't decreased my appreciation for football and may even have increased it. Now I know what I always suspected to be true -- that these guys are all incomprensibly brave, skilled and savage gladiators dressed in armor who are putting their lives on the line for the cheering mob. This is some ancient Roman shit. Although actually having them kill each other would make it impossible to enjoy -- I'm not a monster -- but I guess a level of injury set at 'long term health risk' and the fact that they sign up for it willingly means that the primitive frisson is not outweighed by moral discomfort.

Also, I don't really believe they are making progress on fixing the concussion thing. The super-visible human projectile tackling has been cut back on somewhat, but the basic problem seems inherent in the helmet. If you wanted to address it you'd get rid of helmets and pads and have a totally different sport more akin to Australian football or some variant of rugby.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 01-18-14 11:58 PM
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Also, in the complexity department basketball seems perfect. It's complex and strategic but a reasonably informed and focused spectator can track the strategies being used and the adjustments being made in real time. (Yeah, you'll always be behind the real expert but you'll have a sense).


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 12:00 AM
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I guess a level of injury set at 'long term health risk' and the fact that they sign up for it willingly means that the primitive frisson is not outweighed by moral discomfort.

It's not at all clear that they are actually aware of the long-term health risk when they sign up, though.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 12:08 AM
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102

Clutching Men's Bags, Big or Small

This has been a good football season. And this is the golden age of quarterbacking.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 12:56 AM
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103

It's also not clear that most football players are well-compensated for the risks when you consider all contracts/positions/lifespans, especially relative to the amount of money the sport generates.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 12:58 AM
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104

The comment in 76 is fascinating reading.


Posted by: dz | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 1:14 AM
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105

||

Is this the sports thread? NMM2 Chris Chataway. If you run a half marathon in under 1:40 when you're 75, let me know.

|>


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 6:23 AM
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Thanks. I had to decide between "on topic" and "this is relevant." I thought the former was the right call here.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 6:24 AM
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107

101 is right. They're brave, etc., but they're mostly doing it because they've been doing it since they were kids, and have always been the best at it. I think most of them realize they'll have bad joints when they retire, but no pros today are young enough to have grown up with the knowledge that they might lose their minds. But I agree that no real progress has been made to solve the problem. I still believe that it will die out or change a lot as parents keep their kids from playing.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 6:30 AM
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108

present for you.

Fabulous. It's hard not to love him.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 6:48 AM
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109

If you wanted to address it you'd get rid of helmets and pads and have a totally different sport more akin to Australian football or some variant of rugby.

Head injuries might be reduced simply by speeding up the game, which would also reduce the amount of a complexity at work which a spectator can't appreciate. Cut the play clock in half and eliminate free substitution. Players would have to be in better condition and would be too tired as the game wore on to hit quite so hard. If a team chose to call plays in a huddle there wouldn't be time for more than one audible change at the line. Blocking assignments couldn't be modified. Too many people in the NFL are invested in the complexity level as it exists -- and the league is too profitable -- for anything like that to ever happen. Someone would have to come along and create a new iron man league. It'd be a lot of fun to watch though. There would be more improvisation. I might have mentioned this here before.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 7:19 AM
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110

If everyone goes into it with eyes open, why is the NFL still working so hard to suppress the information?


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 7:37 AM
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111

110: It's possible that while players understand the likelihood of being concussed when they are drafted, and the associated risk to health, that many fans don't think about that risk, and would choose to ignore it if possible. If they can't ignore it, they might not enjoy the game as much, and the NFL might lose money. Those fans would also be less likely to encourage their children to play football, which would cut into the NFL's longterm pool of athletes and fan-base. I think that might actually be what PGD already wrote above.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 7:57 AM
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112

Somewhat ironically, I only have access to NFL RedZone because some years back I got an expanded sports package so I could get the soccer on FSN (my wife also wanted the Tennis Channel). And now between my wife (who is in knitting in front of Swansea-Tottenham* as I type this) and our kids, I come in a distant third in terms of soccer fandom; and even the two non-fans worship at the intertwined altars of Messi and Ray Hudson.

*And I'm heading to the gym so won't have to hear muttered imprecations against Mourinho and his under-utilitzation of Juan Mata


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 8:13 AM
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"More dangerous than Joan Crawford with a wire hanger." A collection of some memorable Ray Hudson calls

It's not the statistics! It's not the statistics! It's not the statistics! ... How do you measure somebody that could balance a balloon in a wind tunnel on a needle? Because Messi could do that!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 8:20 AM
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99: Although actually having them kill each other would make it impossible to enjoy -- I'm not a monster

I see two possible tracks for football (and we will probably have both in some form): One is to go the Rollerball* route, and the other is something where it becomes virtualized in some manner with the players encased in sensors and feedback mechanisms.

*The original was one of the best political movies of the '70s.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 8:26 AM
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One is to go the Rollerball* route

That's Arena League football. In case youj're interested in a organization that really doesn't give a good goddamn about its players' health.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 8:36 AM
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103 is also right, particularly if you consider the relevant pool "everyone in the NFL training system" which consists almost exclusively of college players who are -- by rule -- ordered to work for free. It's hard to say anyone is being fairly compensated when your career trajectory includes many years, likely the bulk of your playing years, where you take serious concussion risk (in addition to all the other career-ending injury risk) without getting paid at all, by cartel rule.

If there's a change, it probably will (and certainly should) be to college football first, as colleges and/or antitrust judges start to understand reality. And to high schools of course, where I guess the game could be severely modified, and maybe already is.

But, really, UMC parents are already not letting their kids play football but I don't see the player supply pipeline shutting down anytime soon. It may become more disreputable to watch and therefore less TV-contract profitable, but I'm not holding my breath.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 8:43 AM
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115: Huh. That was a much, much longer article in the print version.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 9:04 AM
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118

I dislike the inegalitarian nature of football, where the quarterback is the king and all the other roles are of varying, but lesser, importance. Baseball is better because each player has a roughly equal opportunity to be a hero.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 9:29 AM
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119

Audibles will become obsolete when we switch to Fischer Random Football.


Posted by: Kreskin | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 9:31 AM
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120

Dude, what? Baseball is the very least egalitarian of all team sports due to its financial structure. Exhibit A: the NY Yankees.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 9:38 AM
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121

(I know we're talking about two different things. I'm just being argumentative.)


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 9:40 AM
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122

Its true that the MLB is evil in completely different ways than the NFL is.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 10:44 AM
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||
I have a friend who needs some help updating/formatting his resume. He's currently a US Army officer, and (having read the writing on the wall*) plans to apply for the civilian equivalent of his position in the Dept o' Army. Is there anyone with experience applying for/hiring for fed govt jobs who would be willing to offer advice?

*"Kilroy was here."
|>


Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 11:05 AM
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118: I'm not very knowledgable on baseball, but I did hear somewhere that the pitcher's performance is more outcome-determinative than the performance of other positions.

One could argue that it's actually more egalitarian for teams with larger fan-bases, and thus more revenue, to be able to attract better players. This would assume that the number of fans is a strong indicator of the wealth of a franchise. And I think it probably is.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 11:26 AM
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applying for/hiring for fed govt jobs

I don't have much experience with this, but I've heard that the hiring process can be very bureaucratic, especially if he has to apply through some web site like USAJobs. General advice is that he should write his resume so that it's very very obvious that he's specifically qualified for the position he's applying for. For instance, he could include a few sentences at the top describing his skills and experience, using the same terminology used in the job announcement. (This is because job applications sometimes get routed based on keyword searches, by people who don't know what the job is actually about.)

Obviously, if he can use his current connections to meet some of the people who might hire him, that could only help.


Posted by: torrey pine | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 11:45 AM
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UMC parents are already not letting their kids play football but I don't see the player supply pipeline shutting down anytime soon

This. ATV usage is something like 100K emergency room trips and 800+ deaths a year and that's without the prospect of scholarships and paychecks.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 12:29 PM
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126: If less kids play football, the pipeline will narrow. That remains true despite the fact that some people like to do dangerous things. If an example is needed, one might consider the sport of boxing.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 12:39 PM
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I haven't watched a game all year. Is someone going to man up with a line and over/under?


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 12:56 PM
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127: Boxing might be comparable if it was also handing out tens of thousands of scholarships. There's over 200 Division I NCAA football teams alone at 85 scholarships each.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 1:12 PM
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I'm not very knowledgable on baseball, but I did hear somewhere that the pitcher's performance is more outcome-determinative than the performance of other positions.

It is, but pitchers only start once every five games.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 1:15 PM
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I'm pretty confident they will find a way to keep the player pipeline open, given current revenue of $9 billion a year, and aiming for $25 billion by 2027.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 1:20 PM
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90 -- yeah that's not really meant to happen. Probably the biggest upset in world cricket this summer.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 1:37 PM
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Speaking of football, anybody have any idea why I can't seem to get the CBS live stream of Patriots-Broncos to display correctly? It's supposed to be free, but all I'm getting in both Firefox and Safari is a silent blue browser window.


Posted by: Stranded in Lubbock | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 1:42 PM
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Just asked in the Halford household: "Daddy, why do you hate the white team so much?" Because they're assholes, sweetheart.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 1:44 PM
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I was just thinking of you last night, Halford, as I was tactlessly but passionately advocating the ostracism of self-avowed libertarians.


Posted by: Stranded in Lubbock | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 1:51 PM
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133: Are you getting it yet? It's working for me.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 1:57 PM
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136: Nope. Just a window with the CBS logo at the top and no other content at all. I get the game-tracker stuff fine, just not the live video.


Posted by: Stranded in Lubbock | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:00 PM
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Nice work Chevy Silverado ad. Keep those vegetarians in their place.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:03 PM
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It's also not clear that most football players are well-compensated for the risks when you consider all contracts/positions/lifespans, especially relative to the amount of money the sport generates.

That's true. Football players are clearly the most underpaid of all the major sports, and it's not even close. The union got screwed.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:08 PM
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140

Is it too late for you to root for Denver, Roberto Tigre?


Posted by: vw | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:09 PM
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123: Not to be mean, but if you're a Captain with around 15 years in, how serious were you about your career this whole time?

Anyway, I don't know anything about what those resumes would look like. Seems like the kind of thing you would want to ask someone who's in the kind of job you want.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:11 PM
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142

I haven't watched a game all year.

But did you see that Barça got held at Levante?!?!


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:19 PM
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143

Where are you guys getting a free livestream? The only thing I see wants $30, though it may be that it just wants to rip me off based on geolocation.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:21 PM
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143: cbssports.com


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:33 PM
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This suggests that the stream at cbssports.com should be free on every device except mobile phones, but it's not working for me here near DC. (And pwned, on preview, but hopefully with value added.)


Posted by: Stranded in Lubbock | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:37 PM
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Ok, hadn't tried that one, but its not working. According to the error message I'm "geo-blocked". I blame Halford.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:38 PM
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Obama weighs in: "I would not let my son play pro football," he said, indicating he was concerned about the health effects of concussions.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:41 PM
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If you go to NFL.com, they have links to where you can watch live. I think Fox will require a cable provider login but the CBS stream appears to be free (and I see Jesus has posted the URL above). There are international links too if someone not in the US actually cares to watch the NFL.

133: I've had that problem and can't remember how I solved it. As far as I can tell, you may get different results depending on:

browser
operating system
flash version
ad or script-blocking service
whether you have plugins set to be blocked or click-to-play

If you're on Ubuntu, Chromium seems to do better with flash players than Firefox, but apparently some flash-pocalypse is on the way where lots of media will stop working on Ubuntu altogether.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:44 PM
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147: Fox News: Obama has illegitimate son.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:46 PM
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129: Yes, boxing is less popular than football at the collegiate level, and yes, things can never change.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:47 PM
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148: fake accent, you are a god(dess) among (wo)men. I didn't think of reinstalling flash, but apparently that did the trick!


Posted by: Stranded in Lubbock | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:53 PM
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Is there anyone with experience applying for/hiring for fed govt jobs who would be willing to offer advice?

Most federal jobs use USAJOBS or another website, and actually require all applications to be submitted online. For these sorts of applications the "resume" you submit is you build through the website, and it's a good idea to tailor it to the type of job you're looking for. You can have more than one of these resumes saved on the site, which is a good idea if you're applying for more than one type of job. As torrey pine says, generally these go through a first cut that's purely looking for keywords before they even get to anyone who knows anything about the specific job, and only a very small number of applications make that cut. Given that, it's very important that everything in your application be closely tailored to the specific wording of the announcement.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 2:55 PM
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That said, I was never actually successful at getting a job through this process (though I applied to a lot), so I may not be the best source of advice on it.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 3:06 PM
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153 is my experience, except I only tried twice or so.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 3:07 PM
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141: Major, twelve years in.

Thanks, all!


Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 6:07 PM
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Notwithstanding what I said above, I guess I should probably watch the Super Bowl this year since Denver's in it.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-19-14 10:56 PM
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157

The Pot Bowl


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-20-14 5:24 AM
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Man, Navorro Bowman's knee. That was godawful.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-20-14 8:08 AM
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