Monday Superlatives

This weightlifting video is the weirdly enraging thing of the week

August 13, 2018

I don't know why this video enraged me to the point of wanting to punch a cabinet—I'm not even a weightlifter—but it did. Watch:

The one dude is lifting, minding his own business, when an actual hysterical person comes to yell at him for something called "egolifting." What makes it even more disturbing is the way the aggressor sounds like he's about to cry, which we all know is the absolute apex of the rage experience. And there's no good reason for it! He didn't even work at the gym! Probably a part of why this makes me so mad is that it's everyone's worst nightmare to run into a maniac like this who gets in your face for no good reason, and the helplessness you feel watching someone else essentially get bullied by him.

The upshot of this story is that the aggro meathead got banned from the gym and the other guy got a free membership at a better club, but it still sucks on almost every level. I wish the worst for meathead man.

Also, as a last note, this happened in Canada and it absolutely ruins Canadians for me. In our deranged American times, I think of Canada as a little safe harbor of sanity with people who are unfailingly polite and always complimenting each other, but this video just proves everyone there is basically just a rabid American nutjob with better branding. Anecdotal evidence, you say? Small sample size? Sure, but this guy and Rob Ford in the same country? Canada is over.

Unimpeachable Gentleman Champion of the Week: Rafa Nadal

Rafa made it to the finals of the Rogers Cup this past weekend, and faced Stefanos Tsitsipas, another of the brilliant young up-and-comers who have unbelievable skill but also can't seem to win a big event. Toward the end of the second set, in a critical moment, a fan screamed out "let's go Rafa!" right as Tsitsipas was serving. It totally screwed him up, and the serve went about 20 yards out. Tsitsipas complained, but the chair umpire just sat there looking puzzled, as chair umpires are wont to do. That left it to Rafa:

He gave him a let! Just because he's a nice dude who believes in fair play! Turns out, human beings are not all terrible. Maybe Spain is the new Canada?

Also, Tsitsipas had a great quote about the difficulties of facing Nadal:

"He never cracks,'' Tsitsipas said. "He will always grab you like a bulldog, and he will always make you suffer on the court.''

The "Guess the Injury Didn't Affect Him Too Much" Athlete of the Week: Chris Sale

The Red Sox ace made his first start since coming off the DL with a shoulder injury, pitched five innings, and did this:

That's 12 Ks in five innings, which would be ridiculous for a completely healthy pitcher. And may I just say as a Yankee fan that the Red Sox are officially too good and should be considered a monopoly. Break them up with antitrust legislation! Sue them into oblivion!

Funniest Out-of-Context Headline of the Year: Cleveland Browns

This one killed me on ESPN:

Browns kept Callway in game as punishment

I refuse to even read this story, because it's too funny on its own. And it's funny because it feels true: Yes, of course the worst punishment you could possibly give to a member of the Cleveland Browns...is to make them play for the Cleveland Browns. That's comedy gold, and I don't care what the actual article says.

Idiotic Football Story of the Week: Guy Getting Kicked Out of Huddle

Last week, we talked about how annoying and inevitable anthem protest season is, and how we're going to have to suffer through it all season. But I think it's important to remember that it doesn't take a political national anthem debacle to make football stupid, and that there are many run-of-the-mill stories coming out even now that just drip with idiocy.

This week's honor goes to Miami, where a quarterback Ryan Tannehill got pissed off that a rookie running back missed a block and decided to kick him out of the huddle as some kind of lesson. That gets a big "whatever" from me, but holy hell, this got a lot of coverage. An ESPN blog! USA Today! Yahoo! Miami Herald! Bleacher Report! The list goes on!

The funny thing is, they all talk about what great leadership this shows from Tannehill. I have no idea what's happening here, but I can only imagine some PR flunky from the Dolphins was pushing this story like crazy, and a whole bunch of writers bit. And hell, I'm not even saying they're wrong about Tannehill, necessarily. Maybe it does show leadership. Or maybe he was just pissed off and moody.

What I am saying is that is extremely representative of everything that sucks about the NFL, which is so popular that complete non-stories like this flood the entire sports media complex to the point that you cannot be a sports fan and avoid them. Seriously, read any one of those stories and tell me there's anything that merits this level of coverage. And don't get me wrong, I don't blame the writers—apparently, the market has decided that this level of coverage is what the public craves, and hence it's what we get. I just want to reiterate that when it comes to the NFL, the market sucks, and we're at a point of critical over-saturation.

In short, ban football.

The "Wayne Rooney is still a Golden God" Moment of the Week: Wayne Rooney

Last minute of the game, score tied at two apiece, and Wayne Rooney shows that the American period of his life is not just a victory lap. Watch the effort, the physicality, and the precision as he comes from nowhere to steal an empty net goal away from the other side, and then manufactures an incredible goal for his own side:

I'd say that's probably the greatest ending to a soccer match since that time Megan Rapinoe fed the long ball to Abby Wambach at the World Cup quarterfinals in 2011. Keep in mind, though, that I've seen roughly six soccer matches in that span, so I may not be the ultimate resource.

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