“I tended to find lines of poetry beautiful only when I encountered them quoted in prose,” the narrator remarks early in Ben Lerner’s “Leaving the Atocha Station.”
When poetry is quoted in prose, he writes: “What was communicated was less a particular poem than the echo of poetic possibility. Insofar as I was interested in the arts, I was interested in the disconnect between my experience of actual artworks and the claims made on their behalf; the closest I’d come to having a profound experience of art was probably the experience of this distance, a profound experience of the absence of profundity.”
If you squint a little, you could say the same about sports-talk radio. The medium itself is often more mundane than hoped, but when the audio is presented as prose — “my take” as text, experienced at a distance, divorced from its sponsored vocalization — you can experience its glory in the echo of its sociological possibility, profundity sprouting up inside its own absence.
Okay, maybe you have to squint a lot.
Eh, whatever. ESPN’s Colin Cowherd this week again talked about John Wall once doing the Dougie for 30 seconds in 2010. Colin Cowherd cares about John Wall once doing the Dougie for 30 seconds in 2010 more than anyone else in the world cares about anything. Since I am sworn by blood oath to make mention every time he does this, here’s this week’s offering, via Bullets Forever.
“When he broke into the league I think it was his first home game in the NBA, he did this moronic 30-second Dougie, which by the way I’ve had two NBA writers tell me that members of his own team were embarrassed about it. And one of the NBA writers is a national guy that is WIDELY respected. Could be the best NBA writer out there, who always direct messages me and says any time you talk John Wall — Colin, know that his teammates, the veterans on that team, were embarrassed by the Dougie. They were.
“So I went out and I said that’s all I need to know about John Wall. Great talent, but needs to grow up. That’s embarrassing …
“John Wall is exactly what I predicted he would be. And the blogosphere wants me to back down. Brother, it ain’t ever going to happen, because I nailed it. He is a dynamic, freaky fast talent, who has matured a ton, but walked into this league wildly immature with regrettable judgment, shown by the Dougie. And five years later, the only thing I don’t like about him is his judgment!
Etc. At great length. Read more here. We’re locked into history, all of us. Destined to repeat it, Ctl-V’ing our way through existence. Previously:
“In like his first home game, he went out, and the Dougie was a popular song — and I’m telling the back story because a lot of people don’t know the back story — and he came out and he did this 30-second dance. And I just thought it was the stupidest thing I’d ever seen in my life. And I said at the time this kid has amazing talent, but man that is idiotic. He just lacks judgment. I’ve seen enough. He’s not gonna win a title. Leaders don’t do that. Jeter doesn’t do that. You can do it after you win titles, you do whatever you want after you retire. Ray Lewis, as great as he was, didn’t do that first game in the NFL. I just hated it.”
“He came out in his first home game and did a 30-second dance. And I said first game, really? Would Derek Jeter do that? Tom Brady? Magic?
“You can do it after you win titles. You can do it nine years in the league. First home game? If that is deep in you, that something told you — even if you were egged on — to do that and it was a good call, first home game, you’re just not going to be my guy. That’s idiotic. That’s bad judgment.”
“Listen, when John Wall came out and did the Dougie, first home game, for 34 seconds, he was a moron. It’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen. I will never back down.
“Your first day on the job, Mr. Rick Bozich, as a columnist or as a TV reporter, would you do the Dougie into the newsroom? Oh, you wouldn’t, because you’d be looked at like a moron. My first day at ESPN, your first day as a columnist, your first day as a Starbucks barista, you’re gonna do the Dougie?
“I don’t care if you’ve won titles; do what you want. Ray Lewis became an icon, had a Super Bowl; you dance however you want to dance. Magic Johnson’s got five, six rings; you dance how you want to dance. First day on the job, Derek Jeter’s not doing the Dougie. He’s not….
“And I still think the Dougie was the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen….He’s developed into a nice player. But you can’t and never will get an apology for that Dougie thing. That was moronic.”
“Sorry, but I hated the Dougie. It’s absurd, it’s not what leaders do in any industry, it’s childish, it’s bad judgment, and I don’t care if the guy at the arena told you to do the Dougie. I hated it.”
“Before the game started, he spent 34 seconds doing the Dougie. That tells me all I need to know about J-Wow. Then he opened his mouth later and confirmed it: not a sharp guy. All about him.
“Folks, when you rob a bank, it’s not just the act of it, it’s that you sat down for weeks and planned it. That tells me you’re an idiot. The act is just the final icing on the cake. The cake is you sat down for weeks and planned it….
“What he did last night, Rondo never would, Isiah never would, J. Kidd never would, Stockton never would, Nash never would, Magic never would. Point guard is like the quarterback. it’s an IQ-judgment position. The great ones are not about themselves. They’re about the others. Leadership is IQ, it’s not skills.
“J Wow’s 37-second Yo dawg look at me I’m the man [dance], and his wild, out-of-control style, everybody else is buying his stock, and it told me all I need to know.
“It’s not robbing the bank, it’s that you planned it. It’s not just doing the Doggie (sic) for 35 seconds, it’s that you really thought before the game, this is gonna be super cool and people will like me. The wrong people.
“You could see it before the game started. Magic would never consider doing that. It’s just who he is. And you think he’s gonna change now that they gave him $75 million? Oh yeah, I’m sure he’s gonna life change now. It’s not robbing the bank, partner; it’s that you planned it. It’s not just the act, it’s that you thought about it and thought it was a great idea.”