It’s our own L.I. Phil, of course, executing a nifty takeout shot. He and I snuck off yesterday to the South Plainfield Curling Club, where we managed to toss a few rocks before they thawed the ice and closed up shop for the season. We were joined by my friends Peter Della Penna and Robert Vickers, and we all got training and instrux from top curler Dean Gemmell (who also produces the world’s top curling podcast, don’tcha know).
It had been over a year since I’d last curled, and I was a bit worried about whether I’d remember how to do it. But as it turns out, it’s just like Joe Schultz said about bunting.
If you want to see more, Phil put together a nice little video montage — enjoy.
Hahahahahahahahaha: Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the T-shirt you see at right really is part of Nike’s new branding program for Arizona State. It would almost be witty if the whole “Fear the [whatever]” trope weren’t so pathetically played out already.
You know what else is part of the new program? Photos like these, that’s what. Hmmm, now where have I seen those types of photos before? Like I’ve been saying for, oh, ever, Nike’s approach to uniform design has nothing to do with the individual schools and everything to do with Team Nike. The sad thing is watching these kids flexing their muscles and thinking they’re all badass when they’re really just interchangeable pawns in a corporate merchandising scam.
Just to drive that point home, take a look at the uniform’s much-ballhooed shoulder stripes. They’re supposedly meant to represent the points of a pitchfork (or trident, or whatever), but they conveniently look like a certain corporate logo. Congrats, ASU: You’re the first school to wear three swooshes on your jersey.
As for the rest of uniforms, they aren’t a complete disaster (well, except with one obvious exception). I’m reserving judgment on the new helmets until I see them on the field, and I’m sort of intrigued by they way they’ve put Sparky on the back (probably too cluttered back there, but let’s wait and see). On the other hand, using TV initials instead of TV numbers is a bonehead move. At best, it’ll look really clunky; at worst, imagine how it’ll look on all those linemen who barely have any sleeves at all.
Anyway, all the smoke and sunglasses and flexing are too silly to be taken seriously, so I won’t. But if you want to immerse yourself, here’s more info, more photos, a live chat transcript, and a style guide and other downloads. Have fun, but remember that all this has very little to do with ASU and everything to do with the corporate douchebags at Nike.
Wayne’s Whoppersâ„¢, continued: Honest, I was looking forward to enjoying the 2011 MLB season without chronicling Wayne Hagin’s (many) miscues and (countless) foibles. But two nights ago he scaled new heights in incompetence, even for him. Full details over on that other site.
NHL Pool: Longtime Uni Watch friend and ally Teebz is running his annual NHL playoff pool on his blog. Many of you have participated in the past, and I encourage you to do so again. Let’s go, Rangers!
Uni Watch News Ticker: The Twins wore their navy alts last night — except for first base coach Jerry White. That screen shot is from the 1st inning; he switched to navy in the 2nd (good spot by Chad Jorgensen). ”¦ Milton Bradley has been trying to block out the hecklers by wearing earplugs. Off the top of my head, other MLBers to wear ’plugs include Bobby Bonilla, Chuck Finley, and Rafael Palmiero. Anyone else? ”¦ Check out Ichiro’s BP shoes and toe socks (with thanks to Steve Mandich). ”¦ Denis Hurley, who writes about the kits worn in Gaelic sports, has just posted a new piece about a 1960 color clash. ”¦ Hmmm, is that a new road jersey for Michigan? Further glimpses in this video clip (good spot by Ryan Hicks). ”¦ Formula 1 news from Dane Drutis, who writes: “At last weekend’s Malaysian Grand Prix, the two drivers for Lotus Renault GP changed their racing overalls from black to gold, in an effort to combat the heat and humidity in Kuala Lampur.” ”¦ Latest sports exec to float a trial balloon about ads on jerseys: Panthers prexy Michael Yormark. Just to put this in context, he’s the same guy who recently made a fool of himself by picking a fight with a beat writer on Twitter. Let’s make it nice and crystal-clear: Ads on pro sports uniforms are not okay, are not acceptable, and are not inevitable. And if you disagree, I hope you get a better spokesman for your side of the argument than a clown like Michael Yormark. ”¦ Lots of new EPL kits (with thanks to Bryan Justman). ”¦ Holy moly, look at this battered but still awesome 1911 Reds sweater (big thanks to Bruce Menard). ”¦ Oooh, look at this beeYOOteeful set of Indy 500 armbands. ”¦ Here’s something you don’t often see: a high school baseball team with a totally blank jersey. That’s Valley Christian High School in California. “According to the kid in the picture (Will Lane), they broke them out for the first time this season and won, 20-5, so I guess they’ll keep with them for more road games,” says Travis McGuire. ”¦ Hard to believe, but Oregon football had uniforms in the pre-Nike era. ”¦ Yet another uni-que aspect to Salty: Not only does he wear his brim facing forward, but he’s wearing a vented catching helmet — highly unusual (good spot by Andy Chalifour). ”¦ New home and road caps for the Charleston River Dogs (with thanks to Benji Boyter). ”¦ New logo in the works for South Dakota, and it isn’t going over very well (with thanks to Ric Jensen). ”¦ A columnist thinks those Dodgers fans wouldn’t have beaten up that Giants fan if fans would just stop wearing jerseys. Personally, I don’t think fans beat up fans because of jerseys. But I do think anyone stupid enough to spend $200 on a polyester shirt is probably stupid enough to beat someone up too. ”¦ Still more news about Jorge Posada’s mock-turtleneck undershirt, this time from Rob Silcox, who’s the chef for the Trenton Thunder (the Yanks’ double-A affiliate): “I grabbed one of these shirts from our equipment manager to wear under my chef coat on a cold April night. Was brand-new with tags. It’s Nike — swoosh on the left breast.” ”¦ Tim O’Malley reports that Jack McInerney of the Philadelphia Union was missing his Bimbo logo the other day. … Kevin Marcum was watching that ESPN documentary on Tom Brady and noticed something good: “They were showing a clip of Brady at a Pro Bowl and he was talking to Hines Ward. Brady walks over to Ward and says something like, ‘These unis are awful. We look ridiculous.’ They were wearing red jerseys and I think it was the 2006 Pro Bowl.” ”¦ Some high school team in Pennsylvania has managed to rip off the Twins and USC simultaneously (as spotted by Casey Hart). ”¦ “NPB baseball started on Monday,” reports Jeremy Brahm. “Teams wore memorial patches for the tsunami victims, except for the Rakuten Golden Eagles, who’ve gone for the left-sleeve armband.” ”¦ Interesting piece about the origins of the Florida Marlins team name here (big thanks to Yancy Yeater). ”¦ Mark Dormer notes that the wishbone-C logo on Reds pitcher Sam LeCure’s batting helmet last night appeared to be a bit more open-pronged than the one worn by the other Reds. ”¦ Quick, when I say, “diva,” who’s the first athlete you think of? Right, me too. ”¦ And I leave you today with something very special (courtesy of Kenn Tomasch): footage of 49ers lineman Steve Wallace losing his ProCap during the 1995 NFC champsionship game. I actually remember this happening — a formative pre-Uni Watch moment! Take a look: