Daily Archives: September 19, 2013

A new sports trend I just don’t understand. Jon Stewart eviscerates CNN, rightly. And HBO’s “Glickman” is fabulous

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OK, I need someone to explain this to me. For real, I just cannot understand this.

I’m reading this story in the New York Times about the Jacksonville Jaguars, and other NFL teams, and their new approach to make the “in-stadium” experience better for their fans, because we all know that, for a variety of reasons, football is the one sport that’s much better on TV than in person (no one blocking your view, it’s not freezing, you can check scores and watch other games since they all happen on Sundays, etc.)

And what the Jaguars have done is create an in-stadium lounge for their fans, complete with TVs, computers, food and drink, the whole works.
So that way, instead of paying for your ticket and watching the game happening right there in front of you, you can buy your ticket, go to this lounge, and watch everything BUT the game you paid to see.

I don’t understand this at all, not from either perspective. If you’re a fan, why are you spending $50 or whatever the ticket costs, to go to a stadium and sit in a room and watch other games while eating or drinking? We already have that people, they’re called “sports bars.” So why not just watch the game you paid to see?
And from the team’s perspective, shouldn’t you try to put a good product on the field that makes people want to see YOUR team, not others? You’re encouraging people with these lounges to not watch your own team, but watch others and wish you rooted for them!

I’m serious. Please explain this to me if you can.

**Jon Stewart and “The Daily Show” have been on fire since he got back from his three-month hiatus from the show.

And sadly, he’s not lacking for material when it comes to criticizing cable news. In the wake of the Washington Navy Yard shooting, CNN was once again abominably bad and irresponsible in its journalism. Watch Stewart pick them apart in the first 10 minutes of this; it’s hilarious but also sadly accurate.

**Finally, I’m a couple weeks late on this, but I just got around to seeing the new HBO documentary “Glickman,” on the life of legendary sportscaster and former Olympian Marty Glickman, and it’s superb.
If you’ve never heard of Glickman, he lived a remarkable life. Born and raised in New York, he was a standout track athlete who qualified for the 1936 Olympics in Munich, and was a teammate of the great Jesse Owens.

Glickman was scheduled to run as part of the U.S. 4×100 relay team, but in an unconscionable decision, the U.S. coaches removed him and another fellow Jewish runner, Sam Stoller, so as not to anger Adolf Hitler.

Despite this incredible mistreatment, Glickman went on to become maybe the most influential sportscaster of his era, which spanned about 50 years. He invented many of the common basketball terms we hear today (like “in the paint,” and “swish.”), and was a major force in popularizing pro football as well.

The documentary, airing all month on HBO, shows what a terrific individual Glickman was, always helping out young sportscasters (he mentored Marv Albert and Bob Costas, among many others), giving high school athletes recognition on TV, and amazingly, seeming to let go of the bitterness of that Olympics travesty.

There’s a scene toward the end of “Glickman” when he goes back, 50 years later, to the stadium in Germany where he was to have run, and the pure power of that moment is startling.

It’s a great, great film devoted to a man who sadly isn’t as well known outside New York as he should be. Check it out if you can, it’s definitely worth the time.