The late, great comedian, George Carlin is widely regarded as one of the most brilliant and insightful comics of all time. One of his signature bits was a comparison of football and baseball.
“Baseball is played on a diamond in a park. The baseball park. Football is played on a gridiron in a stadium, sometimes called Soldier Field or War Memorial Stadium.”
“In football, you wear a helmet, in baseball you wear a cap.”
“In football, the object is for the quarterback, also known as the field general to be on target with his aerial assault, riddling the defense by hitting his receivers with deadly accuracy, despite the blitz, even if he has to use shotgun. With short bullet passes and long bombs, he marches his troops into enemy territory, balancing this aerial assault with a sustained ground attack that punches holes in the forward wall of the enemy’s defensive line. In baseball, the object is to go home and to be safe! I hope I’ll be safe at home!”
The reason I quote Carlin is because I am looking forward to the Monday Night Football Game between the Patriots and the Jets (My Yankees of football. I hate them just as much!) In baseball, if the Sox and Yankees are getting ready for a series, usually all the quotes are politically correct. Maybe every once in a great while, someone will say something that would be considered “bulletin board” material, but not usually. Terry Francona and Joe Girardi (and Joe Torre before him) all act with a great deal of decorum. So polite, in fact, they all might be invited to Prince Williams’ impending nuptials (If not Prince William, maybe Prince Fielder).
Rex Ryan, the brash, oafish head coach of the Jets is the perfect villain. He may as well be wearing a top hat, while twirling his mustache and plotting to tie Giselle Bundschen to the railroad tracks. Hate Rex and the Jets with a white hot passion that I usually reserve for Jeter and the Yankees. I am, however, tremendously amused by his quote concerning Coach Belichick and the Monday Night matchup. Ryan told the Boston Globe- “As much as I respect and admire Bill Belichick, I came here to kick his a**, and that’s the truth.” As much as he rubs me the wrong way, that’s cool. No mincing words. No “coach-speak”. No misinterpretation. Rex Ryan was refreshingly candid. Maybe you can only speak this way in football. I don’t know. I’ve never heard a baseball manager say anything like that. Guys like Francona and Girardi usually try to diffuse the situation. Old Rex is pouring gasoline on the fire. Other shots may be fired across the deck before the game. That is to be expected. I really hate to admit it, but I respect Ryan for telling the truth. He reminds you of a college frat brother, who is always mouthing off.
“Dean Wormer” famously told “Flounder” in the movie Classic “Animal House” that “Fat, drunk and stupid was no way to through life .” I don’t know if Ryan drinks at all, and I really don’t think he’s stupid. He has rekindled the rivalry between the Pats and Jets.
You know I LOVE baseball. But you have to admit, George Carlin knew what he was talking about.