I have been accused of being biased, of giving preferential treatment to one local Southeast Alaska high school over another.
Evidentially I am either blinded by tales of prior historical greatness, or hood-winked by bright shiny new uniforms; I either graduated from an address on 1639 Glacier Avenue, or 3101 Riverside Drive; my bed sheets are either the colors red and black, or blue/silver/black adorns my living room; my house guests either remove their shoes on a bear skin rug, or hang their coats from stuffed falcons upon the wall.
I questioned this bias, and was called a liar.
Not an insinuation, but that four-letter word.
“Liar,” a local parent said. “You are a liar.”
Last summer, a fan followed me across one baseball field to another, cornered me at the concessions and demanded to know why I never write about when Juneau teams lose to Sitka, that the Falcons had lost a game and it wasn’t in the Sitka paper.
After explaining I don’t write for the Sitka paper, and asking if he read our paper (which he didn’t), the lynching was postponed.
I get it.
I understand that sometimes I will be an absolute genius in your eyes and the majority of the time I am a complete moron to you, your family and future generations of your clan.
I see that.
I accept it.
But bias and prejudice I do not see, nor accept.
I am currently in salary and pension and retirement disputes with myself and I am depending on replacement Klas to cover my leagues.
Replacements can be ripped every week.
Just look at the NFL.
I am paying more attention to the NFL now, with replacement referees, than I did before.
I grew weary of high-priced athletes being treated like gods who could do no wrong, and now I need a good laugh when these guys are brought down to earth, and they don’t know it. They rail on, about how their perfection has been tarnished.
No one is perfect.
Who hasn’t been on the bad end of a bad call, with a bad result?
For that matter, who hasn’t stepped out of bounds, dropped a fly ball or played the wrong note in seventh grade band grade auditions?
Are you mercilessly harangued for that ineptitude?
Has anyone attended a local sporting event? Of any age group of players?
I have heard more comments, berating, and swear words from fans; foot stampings, finger pointing and body gestures from coaches; overzealous, mind numbing phrases by parents than I can shake my Petersburg Vikings’ stick at.
Juneau has a shortage of officials. We don’t have replacements for them. And they don’t get paid nearly enough for what they put up with.
That said, let’s travel back to Monday night, shall we?
The Seattle Seahawks win over the Green Bay Packers on an unfavorable call by the officials. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson throws a Hail Mary into the end zone that falls into the battling clutches of Packers’ defender M.D. Jennings and Seattle wide receiver Golden Tate.
Everyone watching on national television sees the right call.
The officials make a different call. The world comes to an end as we know it.
Talk shows, radio shows, newspapers the world over blame droughts, hurricanes and the elections on the “blown” call, one of many in the replacement referee season.
Obama himself weighs in. Um, Barack, I have seen you play basketball. You are not that good.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion.
Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rogers apologizes to the public for the NFL reffing debacles:
“I have got to do something that the NFL is not going to do,” Rogers said. “I have to apologize to the fans.”
What? I can think of a few other instances where Rogers can apologize.
I mean, if we want to be all upset at officials for blowing calls that cost us our fantasy league standings, or relieve us of the money we should be spending on our family instead of betting rooms, or promote the heckling from my coworker in the next cubicle about his god-team being stronger than my demigod team... if we are going to do that, it is time to start holding everyone accountable.
Let’s start charging players for missed shots and catches, strikeouts and errant throws, fashion faux pas in after-game interviews, poor endorsement commercials, etc.
And Seattle’s Golden Tate?
Are you serious?
Have you seen your own replay?
“I don’t know what you are talking about” Tate tells a reporter who asks him about his illegal push-off that sent Packers’ defensive back Sam Shields into a whip-lash dive into the Seahawks turf. “I don’t know what you are talking about.”
Why can’t you just say, “Hey, I got away with one.”
Don’t lie on national television. You have a family to go home to.
Tate did come clean two days later, when his denials became an internet sensation, saying the act was “in the heat of the moment.”
My biggest complaint of that whole replay being shown over and over and over? The background photographer pumping his fist up and down and jumping around in absolute joy. OMG! Biased?
Media photographers should not be cheering for one team over another when they have access to the field for contractual national media purposes.
Bring in the replacement photogs!
My blue and white camera bag is ready!
So that was my second reference to my home town team, my alma mater, my team of birth and breeding, the Petersburg Vikings!
Could I be biased?
I looked back to the start of the high school football season and tallied up some numbers:
21 items on JDHS football; 21 on TMHS football; JD tennis team - 6 (wait, how come no TM story? No TM tennis team!); both Falcons and Crimson Bears in the same item -18; other local sports - 42; alumni pieces - 6; submissions of local teams from other newspapers - numerous; historical sports shots - over 30; Petersburg Vikings - 1.
What I have discovered is I am not biased.
However, I am working too hard!
I don’t have time to be biased.
As a matter of fact, I don’t have time to write this column.
The last cruise ship of the year is in town and there is a sale on whalebone and tanzanite jewelry.
I suspect these might be the replacement adornments for ivory and gold.