by John Walters

Tweet Me Right

Starting Five

The GOAwayTom

You know: six Super Bowl in nine appearances this millennium for Bill Belichick, Tom Brady, Robert Kraft and the New England Patriots. The city of Boston’s four pro teams have amassed an even dozen championships since years began with a “2” in front of them.

Some random thoughts on Pats 13, Rams 3:

–You really can’t hate Tom Brady when you see this:

–At a Super Bowl where Colin Kaepernick’s name was never mentioned nor any image of him shown, the NFL doubled down on audacity by posting a brief video tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr., and then inviting his daughter out for the pre-game coin toss. The balls on these guys…

–Forget about Todd Gurley’s being criminally underused (he was likely hurt with what Joe Torre would call a “balky knee”). Do the Rams even have a tight end? Tyler Higbee was never targeted and hence never caught a pass.

–Goff completed 50% of his throws, Brady 60%.

–The game featured just one snap, total, from the red zone. One. That’s a Super Bowl record for fewest by a margin of four.

–Both team’s punters were at Oregon State around the same time a decade ago.

–Rob Gostkowski, New England’s all-time leading scorer, became the first kicker to miss a field goal attempt inside Mercedes Benz Stadium this season.

–Befitting a 13-3 snoozer, the game had no trick plays. Zero (our bingo card sits fecklessly by).

–The champions’ feast after this game should be beet loaf.

–At the half:

–Janet Jackson’s watching Maroon 5’s halftime show and saying, “Oh, so now it’s okay to expose a nipple (or two).”

–Kind of hard to believe Jason McCourty broke up that fourth-quarter TD pass attempt considering where he was midway through the play. And yes, Jared Goff found the receiver late and then wobbled a duck his way.

–If that was the last catch of Rob Gronkowski’s magnificent and bodacious career, it would be fitting.

–Bud Light’s “War On Corn Syrup” and Bud’s “Wind-powered” beer. What’s next? “Our beer is more likely to be discounted as a happy hour special than anyone else’s?” Who at Bud Light thought launching an unprovoked strike against America’s No. 1 cash crop was a good idea?

–Did anyone else see that overhead tracking shot of Tracy Wolfson getting lost in the postgame scrum and think, I haven’t seen anyone get lost like that in a mob in Georgia since Season 2 of The Walking Dead?

–The trophy will say “Julian Edelman,” but the real Super Bowl LIII MVP was Kansas City Chief defensive end Dee Ford. On a play in which the Chiefs should’ve clinched a Super Bowl trip with an interception of Tom Brady very late, Ford lined up in the neutral zone on a play that was going away from him.

–Don’t anyone tell Mike Pence about this:

–This pic is difficult to top:

–If the Rams get rid of Jared Goff, they should trade him to Jacksonville so that hostile fans can refer to him as “Jag Goff.”

–Sean McVay becomes the youngest coach ever to lead his team to the Super Bowl and fail to score a touchdown and get into the red zone. Credit the 33 year-old for owning it, telling reporters that he was completely outcoached by Belichick.

–Rams OL Brad Whitworth was sanguine post-game: “At the end of the day, we’re all gonna die.” It’s nice to see that, 40 years later, someone is still channeling Bill Murray‘s pregame hype speech from Meatballs: “It just doesn’t matter! It just doesn’t matter!”

2. Northam Exposure

Your medical school had a yearbook?!? Virginia governor Ralph Northam became this past weekend’s Covington Catholic (or maybe Josh Hader?) when a photo of two men posing on his yearbook page showed one in a Klan hood and the other in blackface. Probably the worst part for Northam, 55, is that he cannot remember which one he was (so he took a page from Trump 101 and denied being either).

At Saturday’s “Mea Culpa But I’m Not Admitting Guilt” press conference, Northam did offer that he once put on blackface to be Michael Jackson in a dance contest (unprompted, he revealed that he won…good for you!). Later folks plumbed his VMI undergrad yearbook and learned that friends called him “Coonman.”

Of course, he was just a kid, a mere 24 or 25 years old, when that photo was taken.

3. Virk Outta Work

On Friday ESPN fired anchor Adnan Virk, escorting him off the Bristol campus. The charge? Excessive leaks to the media. When Virk did less than what his bosses felt he should do in terms of cooperation, he was canned. We were agnostic about Virk, although we’d slot him in that “up-and-coming ESPN anchor who’s trying just a bit too hard to show us how clever he is” (you wanna do that, bub, write your own free blog!) bin. Now the Pakistani-born Canadian, 40, is done. It’ll be interesting to see what a future employer thinks in terms of hiring him given that he’s now known as a leaker. Any openings on the White House staff?

4. Nuke The Knicks

Jive Turkey

In case you haven’t been paying attention: The New York Knicks are 2-26 since December 1, which is also the last time they won at Madison Square Garden. One of those two wins was in OT at Charlotte, the other indescribably versus the Lakers (minus LeBron) at Staples.

It’s only getting worse: yesterday they lost at MSG to the Grizzlies, who entered with a nine-game road losing streak. Also, the Knickiest Knick, Enes Kanter, thought he’d actually been called off the bench to play but the assistant coach was actually calling for new Knick Dennis Smith, Jr. So he said, “Dennis” and Enes thought his name was being called, so he headed to the scorer’s table and then was called back.

The crowd groaned. You can’t even give him this?

5. Don’t Hold Back

There’s the nice Ellen on TV. She hosts a daily afternoon talk show. And then there was the unfiltered Ellen Page—you know her as the star of Juno—who appeared on Late Show last week and did not hold back in an impassioned rant against the intolerance of this White House.

Judge for yourself.

Music 101 


Artist Jeff Buckley, who drowned in the Mississippi River late one night after a recording session for his second album, is the Mark Fidrych of rock and roll. By that we mean that neither man is in his respective Hall of Fame (Rock, Baseball) for the dumb reason that their careers, though short and incandescently brilliant, were too brief. That’s dumb. Every young baseball fan should be aware of Fidrych’s magical rookie season with the Detroit Tigers in 1976 (19-9, league-best 2.34 ERA, but the numbers weren’t what made The Bird unique).

When Buckley’s debut album (also titled Grace) was released in 1994, it peaked at 149 and he must’ve thought, What do I have to do? More likely he thought, Pearls before swine. In the decades since, the album has come to be rightly appreciated as an all-time classic and Buckley as a rock legend. There’s a musical biopic waiting to be made here.

Remote Patrol

She Wore A Yellow Ribbon

The Duke. Hollywood has never made a movie star quite like him, though Liam Neeson comes close.

The two Johns—Ford and Wayne—team up again, in 1949, for the second installment of their Cavalry trilogy (Fort Apache, 1948; The Rio Grande, 1950). Shot on location in Monument Valley, it received the Oscar for Best Cinematography. It’s “31 Days Of Oscar” time at TCM and it’s only just getting started so I’m going to be this annoying and pedantic all month. What else is new?

One thought on “IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

  1. My favorite Tony Romo moment during the game came after sideline reporter Jay Feely complimented Rams kicker Greg Zuerlein for making a long field goal, noting that Zuerlein had been “playing through pain.” Romo let that sit for a moment and then said “Was that our kicker saying give credit to a kicker for playing through pain? . . . you know, the defensive linemen are a little banged up as well.”

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