Saturday, July 4, 2015

Who's screaming now? Surprise!

In the world of sports a lot of screaming goes on. The fans in attendance at arenas and stadiums are certainly vocal. Pretty much the same goes for sports bars when the patrons are watching their home team. A great play by one of their own will result in standing whoops, fist-pumping, high fives, and maybe another round. Conversely, if the bum refs or umpires blow a call (perceived or real) that goes against their heroes, there will still be vocal outrage, and maybe a few peanuts or french fries bounce off the flat screens.

[Despite the frustration, it's generally not a good idea to throw pizza squares, burgers, or hot wings at the video equipment. First of all, that stuff's expensive to start with and, second, the management would likely frown on such behavior. Coney dogs are definitely out.]

But there's other screaming going on and the source is somewhat surprising. I'll get back to that.

In recent years the fairer sex has made fantastic progress when it comes to covering sporting events. It's not a bit unusual to see women in a variety of roles that were once male only territory. Some of them have done their homework and know their stuff, while others are just pretty faces without a clue. Then again, the same could be said for some of the guys. Seen Bruce Jenner lately? Ahem.

Thing is, right or wrong, women have long had the reputation of being more prone to screaming than men. Sure, the guys will let out a triumphant whoop here and there over a notable accomplishment, but the girls still do a lot more yelling overall when it comes to athletic participants. They are many on the women's pro tennis tour that shriek every time they hit the ball. This is why God invented mute buttons when watching such a match. Years ago, US soccer player Brandi Chastain famously ripped her shirt off after scoring the winning goal to show the world -- well -- maybe it wasn't that big of a deal. Ahem again.

But now the tables have turned. The men are doing all the screaming, particularly amongst game announcers and TV talking heads. Be it a baseball, basketball, hockey, or football game, the men will completely lose it when describing a good play. Their voices rise and the words come fast and furious like they just witnessed the Second Coming. What we have just seen must be the greatest feat of all time in the world of sports -- according to them. And it will be something else even greater tomorrow.

Example: Ever heard a male Latino announcer describing a point scored in soccer? GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!!!! And then more gibberish that Artoo Detoo would be hard pressed to decipher.

Baseball outfielders making diving catches are routine these days. But when one does it, count on seeing it as some sort of phenomenal highlight. Every home run over 400 feet is considered as some sort of "monster shot". Nevermind that back in the pre-steroid days, guys with inferior bats and deader baseballs used to hit 500+ foot home runs. (Whatever happened to that?) If one of those occurred today, the male announcers might well spontaneously combust.

Dunks in the NBA are still celebrated like some sort of Herculean feat, though they happen constantly. And isn't a 6 foot 8 or above player dunking the ball a little like a pro golfer making a 6 inch putt? I mean, how many different fancy ways are there to do it? It still only counts for 2 points or 1 stroke.

But the XYer talking heads will go ballistic over a routine dunk. To their credit, the XXers remain a little more subdued over such things. To them, every hockey goal or 50 yard touchdown pass isn't a classic. Sure, they're coached up to bring the hype, but so far they seem to have retained a manner of sanity when the mundane happens. Contrary to their male counterparts, everything is not the "greatest".

It should be noted that on a certain sports network a couple XXer talking heads are seriously preggers. Nothing wrong with that. It is necessary to propogate the species, though the thought of the next generation of talking heads being even more hyper-excitable than the current one is somewhat scary. Either that, or these girls have been hanging out with Joey Chestnut doing some serious competitive eating training. An even scarier thought.

What's that? Joey just lost his hot-dog eating title at the Nathan's Coney Island contest?

Wow. All good things must, urp, come to an end sometime. And the new champion is a guy named Stonie? Really? Actually, it makes perfect sense. Anybody that can eat 62 hot dogs and buns in only 10 minutes most definitely has a world class case of the munchies.

And the male announcer screamed with excitement like King Kong himself had just taken the stage with a rogue Kardashian in tow. The ladies were probably horrified. Who wants to go out on a date with, much less get serious with a guy that makes Jethro Bodine look like an anorexic when it comes to vittles? Yikes.

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