Tuesday, July 8, 2008

The Schmooze

My all time favorite sports talk personality is Steve Sommers out of WFAN in New York. He's funny, articulate, has the ability to put up with a lot of crap from opposing fan (and as a Rangers and Mets fan, he puts up with a great deal) and is generally superior to the most of the on air talent on WEEI in Boston - at least in my opinion. I base this observation on an incident that happened on Saturday.

Steve Sommers was taking phone calls during his usual insanely varied schedule (he tends to be on the air whenever they can squeeze him in) and one of the dumber fans I've ever heard called him. He described himself as an "ex" Yankees fan who had abandoned the team a few years ago before because he didn't like the way the team management was treating Joe Torre and he was sick of Hank Steinbrenner's act. Rather than let him go on with his insane comment, Steve pointed out the logical fallacies in his argument (for example, George Steinbrenner's past misdeeds were even worse) without stooping to personal attacks.

Then I lost the signal. I went over to WEEI and subjected myself to the Mustard and Johnson show. It didn't take me very long to find someone even worse than the "ex" Yankee fan. Instead, we had an "ex" Red Sox fan who went on an 2 minute tirade about how much he hated the Red Sox and how much better things were when Yaz was around and how he was much more interested in his son's college baseball team. Rather than point out that he was an idiot, the two hosts let him rant. In fact, they seemed to egg him on I wanted to reach through the dashboard and strangle this moron and I was rather disappointed that the hosts didn't at least point out that he was a horrible fan - or at the very least hang up on him.

I understand that WEEI is immensely popular, that they are one of the highest rated radio stations in this region - if not the country. I also understand that letting nimrods and jackanapes make asses of themselves on the airwaves is successful business strategy - kind of like how the Romans used to feed people to the lions and stage epic battles for entertainment. Also, I am aware that listening to the Mustard and Johnson show doesn't give me a lot of moral high ground - it is referred to as "Yankee talk" for a reason. Still, I prefer the way Steve Sommers goes about his business and I would gladly trade an entire month of "Boston" sports talk for a 3-4 hour schmooze.

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