Nick's Knacks Nick's Knacks

  • TOUGH DAY AT THE “OFFICE”

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    “Ah, just give it some time, son. In a day or so, no one will even remember.”

    Famous words spoken by every parent to every child. Just fill the seemingly insurmountable obstacle of embarrassment here ____. We’ve all been there, and more often than not, Mom or Dad was right. A few laughs. A few jeers. A few days. No one cares anymore.

    And then there’s the kid that peed himself.

    Remember that kid? Of course you do! No one forgets the time _____ peed himself in _____. That kind of stuff sticks in the brain like…well…pee in a carpet. Or pee on the hard courts of the Australian Open.

    Tennis Fanhouse reports an Australian Open ball boy delayed a match between Donald Young and Christophe Rochus for 30 minutes when he had a little “oops I whizzed my pants.”

    Young explained: "A ballboy started peeing on himself. So that was really unfortunate.''

    Yeah, especially for Young who had just begun to seize momentum in the match.

    "They came out with the blower,'' Young said, "and it wasn't working, so ...''

    This is what I don’t get: it’s hardcourt tennis! It took ½ hour to dry that off? We had a dude in Wauwatosa Rec. League that was a chronic puker. The kid always wretched…just about every time on the court. It took all of 10 minutes for his rainbow yawn to bake onto that surface so firmly that it took multiple July thunderstorms to even make a dent in the top coat.

    How much urine was coming out of this kid?

    The only ball boy to have failed the tennis world more greatly is Kosmo Kramer.

     

  • IT'S LIKE REAL GOLF, BUT NOT

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    Tiger Woods

    The story may go away.  Scratch that, the story will go away…except for snarky references that will forever haunt Tiger on talk radio. 

    But I hope that computer software nerds never stop developing games like this.

  • I DON’T WANT TO BE THAT GUY, BUT…

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    The NFL’s divisional playoff round was slightly overshadowed this weekend by the death of 26 year old budding NFL star Gaines Adams.  The official cause: cardiac arrest.  The likely culprit: an enlarged heart.

    Anyone else thinking, “I wonder what he was using?”

    I’m in no way attempting to minimize the tragedy of Adams’ passing.  Nor am I accusing Adams of any self destructive contribution to his passing.  I’m merely admitting to my first reaction, a response conditioned by the increasingly unfortunate company that is dead (young) athletes.

    Get used to it, ‘cause I’m afraid we’re just getting’ warmed up.

    Welcome to the GNC generation – where kids, I’m sorry…young adults, can walk into their neighborhood store and pick up anything from vitamin C to anabolic poppers.  Take a guess at which is the better seller.

    Bigger, faster, stronger…at any cost, at much younger an age. 

    Unfortunately, what isn’t being sold with the bottle is the following disclaimer:  The supplement downed to make possible your participation at the highest level, is precisely that which will make impossible your body’s ability to maintain under the rigors of the highest level. 

    Translation: that consumed at 16 could kill you at 26.

    It’s entirely possible that Gaines Adams was clean…has always been clean.  But what is clean? 

    Every year, every sport adds a substance or two to the list of the banned.  If there’s one fact we know about substances, it is this: the chemistry of PEDs is always a step ahead of the testing.  Athletes today are using substances that their respective sport doesn’t even know about yet.  And worse, using substances that their sport is aware of, but hasn’t yet banned.

    I pray to God that Gaines Adams suffered from a genetic heart defect that couldn’t possibly have been identified. 

    I pray to God that Gaines Adams’ story is not one of: kid wants ticket to the big time – kid takes supplement - supplement helps him gain the necessary edge – supplement causes irreversible scarring of the heart…adult pays the ultimate price for the mistake of a kid.

  • DUDE...YOU'RE ON TV!

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    Sleep Zs

    Caught sleeping, er no?

    That’s Packers Defensive Coordinator Dom Capers during Green Bay’s Wild Card loss to the Arizona Cardinals. Sure looks like he’s out, but if you don’t mind taking an alternate route with me, come along…

    Here’s the context: Green Bay, trailing 24-10 at the half and 31-10 just 3:45 into the second half, has managed to close the seemingly insurmountable gap to a very manageable 31-24. Three plays later, it’s back to a 14 point cushion for Arizona.

    Enter the video.

    There’s Dom Capers, deeply focused on the (what is likely a trembling) voice on the other end, futilely explaining how the Cards just gashed their way into the endzone in 1:33 after Green Bay valiantly climbed back into the contest. Entirely unsatisfied with the rationalization, Capers lets out a “pfft,” complete with a body tremor (he was that mad), then frustratingly tosses his play sheet in a “why do I even use this thing if nobody’s going to execute the call?” motion.

    Take that theory for a test drive:

    Or he was just sleeping.

     

  • ANSWERED QUESTIONS

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    Entering the 2009 campaign, there was a dark cloud of uncertainty about the present day, and future, Green Bay Packers. Among the most notable questions:

    • Who is Mike McCarthy? 13-3 or 6-10 or just average like his first go ‘round?

    • Has Ted Thompson tallied more hits or more misses?

    • Can Aaron Rodgers win, or is he a mere stat monkey? (For the record, I found this inquiry silly, but…)

    • Can this team transition to a 3-4 effectively with the personnel it possesses, or are we in for another season of defensive gaffs and fourth quarter follies?

    Sunday’s loss stings, but there are 31 painful endings to every NFL season. I think we’re gonna be OK.

    • Mike McCarthy is a good coach. He makes mistakes. He has weaknesses. But he is a good coach, and it’s clear the roster plays hard for him. He, like this team, is learning how to win, and so far, it’s tough to argue with 38-26.

    • I wasn’t sure about Ted’s decisions mid-season – even went so far as to say that I didn’t believe this team very talented. I’m pleased to say that I was wrong. There is crazy talent on this team…crazy young talent. And here’s the real upside: that crazy young talent has NFL experience. The ink may barely be dry on their birth certificates, but many are multi-year veterans of the league. Thompson has assembled a team that I believe it’s fair to say is just a couple of players away. He will forever be judged by his ability to find those players, to take the next step, but so far, he’s done a good job.

    • And then there’s Aaron. He is a winner. He is a leader. It’s quite possible he was the only one who believed that his team wasn’t sunk at 17-0, 31-10, 38-17. Aaron Rodgers can flat out play, and has done so at a historical level.

    o Back to Thompson for a second. It’s only two years into this, but I’ve seen enough to declare (barring injury) that Aaron Rodgers will be outstanding for years to come. Ted Thompson deserves credit for doing something that few have ever accomplished in the history of the NFL: replace a legend at the quarterback position. San Francisco did it. Jay Fielder had some nice years in Miami post-Marino. Help me out with anyone else. Chicago’s still living in the McMahon years. Dallas went through four between Aikman and Romo. Cinci shuffled for a decade after Boomer. The Bills after Kelly. The Broncos after Elway. The Giants after Simms, though they had some spotty success. The guy who replaced Brett Favre is the only QB in league history to bust off consecutive 4,000 yards passing seasons. Nice.

    • The transition to the 3-4. I think it went pretty well. Flashes of invincibility…areas of genuine concern. The Pack’s D showed several personalities over 18 weeks, but all-in-all, they delivered on a lot of promises.

    There was a plethora of questions coming in. After an 11-5 season and one of the best football games I have ever seen on Sunday, I’m comfortable with the answers heading out.

     

  • I DON’T KNOW…

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    Tiger on Vanity Fair

    There’s a lot of “DAMN!” goin’ around regarding this photo of Tiger Woods in Vanity Fair.  I’ll say this – dude is cut.  He looks good.  He looks big.  He looks a lot bigger than he used to look.  He looks really big for a golfer.  But I don’t know.  I feel like it was much more impressive with the red shirt on.

    Take off the street cred cap.  Put down the dumbbells.  Exhale.  Crack a smile.  Couldn’t that be just about anybody with a penchant for pushing plates? 

    I absolutely believe he is artificially enhanced – steroids, HGH, something else, all of the above…whatever. There’s no doubt in my mind. My mind. But if there’s one thing we’ve learned from steroids in baseball, pinning performance enhancing drugs on a guy isn’t so simple as just taking a look at him. Sometimes it is, and there’s no denying Tiger’s physique has undergone an intense transformation.

    So you’ve got the body. Then there’s all that has surfaced since Thanksgiving. The man who will kiss his wife and kid on the 18th green, then dip his wick in some random Vegas ink later that night has some character issues. Tie in his connection with Dr. What's His Face? in Canada, and the distance from A to PED is less a leap than a hop.

    But again, I don’t know. I don’t find this photo to be the damning evidence so many are making it out to be.

  • LIKE IT'S 1999.

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    Happy New Year from the Hoff

    Happy New Year from the Hoff!  See you next year.  Ha!  See you next year.  Man, that one never gets old.  Good stuff there.

  • BETTER LATE THAN NEVER

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    New Orleans Saints

    Tom Benson (owner) and the rest of Saints Nation can now celebrate.  The road to the Super Bowl will go through New Orleans.  I don’t know what the party from his couch looked like last night, but thanks to the Fox Sports cameras, we all got a glimpse of Benson’s premature merriment from the owner’s box on Sunday.

    Garrett Hartley lines up for the potential game winning 37 yard FG…YAY!

    Tom Benson #1

    But wait!  That didn’t look right off his foot.  Why is my wife the only one still celebrating?

    Tom Benson #2

    He missed the kick, woman.  Get off me!

    Tom Benson #3

  • JOE THEISMANN, MEET DERRICK ROLAND

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    Photo courtesy of Creative Commons

    Handshake

    The video speaks for itself, but listen to the announcers: “We think it’s his ankle.”  Really?  What would suggest that to be the case?

    Here's Joe...just for fun:

  • A SECOND HELPING OF SUNDAY HAM

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    hAM

    First Devin Hester (click HERE if you haven’t seen that video…though if you haven’t, shame on you for not reading this blog regularly!), now Tommy Kelly:

    I’d gone 30 years without ever seeing that, now it’s twice in a single season! Maybe the NFL needs to switch to the MLB leather belts. I mean, with the exception of Steve Lyons (and we know you did it on purpose, Steve), you don’t see pants comin’ down very often in baseball.

    Poor Tommy. At least Hester’s pants snapped back into place, sort of. Kelly’s incident had that look of the little kid in the john who has yet to grasp proper urinal etiquette - just standing there, bare bottomed, with his pants and superhero undies down around his ankles. You feel for the kid. Fortunately for the child in that analogy, he’s blissfully ignorant to the fact that he should be embarrassed. The same cannot be said for Kelly, though I have a feeling he isn't too red in the face.

    Good stuff.

     

  • FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE’S THEORY AT PLAY

    Posted by Nick Vitrano

    Herd Behavior Mentality

    Philadelphia fans suck. I realize that I’m generalizing here, and in process, lumping in the good with the bad, but I don’t see a whole lot of brotherly love being extended to these San Francisco fans.

    What’s the deal, Philly? It’s not good enough for you to smoke your opponent by two TDs? You have to make it so physically uncomfortable for the visiting fans that they are actually forced to leave? Nice work, ash-masters. And way to continue the aerial assault after security arrives, you classless bums.

    But as my buddy Brad pointed out, what can you do? Eject an entire stadium?

    Credit the San Francisco faithful for just taking it. I’m sure they knew that to retaliate would be to die, but they certainly could have walked out long before they were encouraged by the red jackets. I hope they were escorted to a pair of indoor club seats. At the very least, those guys deserve a free shot on the losers sitting in front them.