Monday, February 3, 2014

Richard Sherman's Vindication.

If you've been around this blog long enough, you're fully aware that I'm not really a football fan. My sporting fandom extends to exactly one sport, and exactly two teams. The rest of the sporting world is little more than a useful diversion while I wait for my Tarheels and Wizards to tip off their seasons again. Nothing more, nothing less.

All that said, I watched the Super Bowl with greater than usual interest last night, specifically for Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman. After giving a memorable, and perhaps somewhat crass postgame interview a few weeks ago, Sherman has become a household name for perhaps all the wrong reasons. Lots of people labelled him a thug, and uncouth loudmouth, a poor sportsman, and a sign of the erosion of American culture as whole. All over an emotional, perhaps too passionate 15 second sideline interview. In a roundabout way, Sherman's interview and the subsequent backlash was indicative of American culture as a whole: oversensationalized, lacking in nuance, passing judgement on a the entirety person's character based on one moment in time. Worse were those who "defended" Sherman by insisting that his rant was perfectly okay because he was a Stanford grad, as if him going to Florida State, or NC Central, or Wyoming would have somehow meant he was every bit the ignorant thug everyone had labelled him in the first place. Wrong, wrong, wrong.

So last night, in a contest of two teams in isolated markets that most of America wouldn't otherwise care about, the battle lines were drawn: The All American QB and his merry band of similarly complected wideouts, versus a team of roving dreadlocked ganja smoking bandits from a state where you can both legally get blazed and marry a person of the same sex. It was the perfect matchup for Culture War 2014! Or something hyperbolic like that.

I, for one, for cheering for Sherman and the Seahawks for all the aforementioned reasons. Also because I've spent time in both cities and found Denver really boring and Seattle freakin' awesome. Mostly the latter.

Anyways, you know the final tally by now: The Hawks jumped on Peyton and the Broncos early and often, the game was over by the half, Sherman was seldom even tested and eventually knocked out of the game altogether, and probably everyone on the East Coast either fell asleep or turned to House Of Lies at some point, or maybe that was just me. Either way, well done Sir Sherman and the Seahawks.

Question: Who were you cheering for? Did the "culture war" over Sherman's comments rub you the wrong way and did you cheer for the Hawks as a result? What's up with Peyton Manning? What sorta person names their child "Golden Tate"?!?

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