Good Boy! Pooch on the Pitch Is Just What 2020 Needed

At the end of a truly miserable year that has brought so much sorrow and stress into so many of our lives, fate bestowed a small consolation prize upon us yesterday, as a dog wandered onto the field during a Bolivian soccer match and used someone’s right boot as a chew toy. He romped around for a bit with the boot, then sort of gave up and rolled over, and finally was carried off by a player.

It’s pretty much the most delightful thing ever. And I don’t know about you, but I could use some delight right about now, so let’s enjoy it!

I don’t speak Spanish, so I asked the Twitter-verse if someone could provide a rough translation of what the broadcasters were saying:

He grabbed a boot. They’re going to send him off. Whose boot is it? That’s the question.

There he goes again with the shoe! How will the story of the puppy with the shoe end?

The dog with the shoe. It’s very affectionate, very playful. They won’t be able to get him off easily. He’s pleading his case: “I want to play too. I want everyone to see me on TV.”

And there’s more! Turns out there was a very similar incident — resulting in a similarly delightful video — a little over two years ago during a soccer match in Gori, Georgia. Bonus points for the title of the YouTube clip:

Awwww — good boy!

I think that’s enough for our final lede entry of the year, don’t you? After all the hassles this year has presented, it’s nice to go out with a smile.

(Special thanks to the Tugboat Captain for bringing the pooch video to my attention, and to Jorge Cruz, @NassauNuts, Rafael Rosas Castro, Cesar Martín, Nick Vega, Martin Tully, and Germán Cabrejo for responding to my request for translation assistance.)

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An NBA first: Kudos to Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon, who last night became the first woman to act as head coach of an NBA team after Gregg Popovich was ejected. (Now she just needs to pull her mask up over her nose!)

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A rare plug for yesterday’s post: Occasionally there’s a Uni Watch post that I’m very excited to publish because I really enjoyed working on it and can’t wait to put it out there. These stories usually aren’t about breaking news or leaks — those are exciting too, of course, but I’m talking more about posts that are interesting, posts that teach me things.

Yesterday’s entry — an interview with the guy who directed a new TV commercial that features a lot of great old-timey football uniforms — was one of those. I learned so much cool stuff while putting it together, and I was stoked to share all of that with you folks because I figured you’d dig it as much as I did. Or at least that was my hope — sometimes the readership’s response doesn’t match my own enthusiasm.

As it turned out, you people seemed to like reading yesterday’s post as much as I liked putting it together. There was so much positive response — some people called it an “instant classic,” others said it was their favorite post of the year, and so on — all of which really meant a lot to me. It felt like my own giddy enthusiasm for the post was returned in kind — a nice bit of reciprocity.

Anyway: I don’t usually promote the previous day’s post, but I’m going to do it for this one. So if you haven’t already read yesterday’s entry, I hope you’ll check it out. The early returns suggest that you’ll probably like it.

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“So bad it’s good” reminder: In case you missed it yesterday, my final piece of the year for InsideHook is a look at uniforms that are “so bad, they’re good” (including the Steelers’ bumblebee throwbacks, shown above). You can check it out here.

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The Ticker
By Paul

NFL News: Following up on an item from yesterday, here’s how the Bears’ Gale Sayers on-field memorial will look this Sunday. … In an attempt to avoid distractions and keep everyone focused on the task at hand, the Colts will not show the scores of the games that could affect their playoff chances this Sunday. … The Titans are adding a helmet decal this Sunday in response to last Friday’s downtown Nashville bombing (from @MrBudziszewski). … The Jags will go white over teal this weekend — their ninth uni combo of the season. … The Bills, who have not had live fans in attendance at their home games all season long, will be permitted to have a limited number of fans on hand for the postseason.

College and High School Football News: Here’s how Alabama’s jerseys look with the Rose Bowl patch, and ditto for Notre Dame (from Griffin Smith and Warren Junium, respectively). … Looks like the Peach Bowl will be color vs. color, with Georgia in black and Cincinnati in red (thanks to all who shared). … The Texas Six-Man Division II State Championship Game features a school that poaches an NFL team’s logo against a school that poaches an NHL team’s logo (from @shoelessmuseum). … In case you were wondering, the World’s Most Disgusting Condiment Bowl Duke’s Mayo Bowl did not end in a mayo bath for the winning coach, which left some fans disappointed (from Kary Klismet). … Speaking of that game: The winning team, Wisconsin, broke the trophy, and then “fixed” it with a bottle of mayonnaise (thanks to all who shared). … The Jordan maker’s mark on Oklahoma DE Ronnie Perkins’s jersey for last night’s Cotton Bowl had an amputated limb (from @UncleFraz). … In a related item, here’s an interesting thread about Florida’s Cotton Bowl patch placement (from Sam McKinley). … You know the cliché about football being all about the Xs and Os? Back in 1977, Belleville High in Kansas wore an “XO” pattern on their pants. So they were very into either diagramming plays or else hugs and kisses (from Matthew Wiegand).

Hockey News: Here’s a time-lapse video of the Wild’s new ice surface being set up, including the 20th-anniversary logo at center ice (from @Natron44). … Similarly, the Avs have put their 25th-anniversary logo at center ice (from Wade Heidt). … Here’s a time-lapse video showing the installation of the Flyers’ ice surface, too (from John Kelemen). … New masks for Sharks G Martin Jones (from Jeremy Brahm). … The Panthers have added a star pattern to their red line (Wade Heidt again). … Zdeno Chára, who wore No. 33 for 14 years with the Bruins, will wear that same number with the Capitals (thanks, Jamie, and to everyone else who shared). … Donald Shane has a good analysis of the Red Wings’ uni number situation.

NBA News: The Celtics began the season wearing a “Tommy” memorial band for former coach Tommy Heinsohn. But now that former coach K.C. Jones has also died, they’ve changed the memorial to a “Tommy-K.C.” band. … Knicks G/F Reggie Bullock talked a bit about his weird uni snafu from last Saturday. … Here’s something I didn’t remember: During the 1997 preseason, the Magic and Spurs played a game with a red/white/blue ABA ball as part of an ABA 30th-anniversary promotion (from Jorge Cruz). … Here’s an article about the court design that goes with the Suns’ City uniforms. … Here’s a video of a bunch of NBA players naming their choices for the coolest NBA jerseys of all time. Note that they were asked to name a “jersey,” not a “uniform.” Sigh. … Clippers F Kahwi Leonard, who took eight stitches to his mouth area after an on-court collision earlier this week, returned to the court last night wearing an unusual mask (from Mike Chamernik).

College Hoops News: Arkansas coach Eric Musselman was wearing his Covid mask upside-down last night (from Bret Bartelme).
 

Soccer News: A football club in Argentina commissioned its own version of Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam, but with Lionel Messi and Diego Maradona instead of Adam and God (from Jakob Fox). … Paris Saint-Germain’s fourth kit has leaked (from Kary Klismet).

Grab Bag: Here’s a look at the evolution of Wonder Woman’s costume (NYT link). … Here’s one of those articles about the history of Star Trek uniforms.

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That’s a wrap for 2020, and not a moment too soon. I’d like to thank each of you for sticking with Uni Watch throughout this difficult year. Many of you have told me that the site was a lifeline for you in these troubled times — it was for me as well, and so were all of you folks. Here’s to better things in 2021. See you then. — Paul

31 comments to Good Boy! Pooch on the Pitch Is Just What 2020 Needed

  • George P | December 31, 2020 at 8:49 am |

    Under yesterday’s plug section, the final sentence is not completed.

    • George P | December 31, 2020 at 8:53 am |

      The specific sentence in question refers to shaking someone’s hand

      • Paul Lukas | December 31, 2020 at 8:58 am |

        Oopsie. Fixed.

  • Blair | December 31, 2020 at 8:59 am |

    “The Jordan maker’s mark on Oklahoma QB Spencer Rattler’s jersey for last night’s Cotton Bowl had an amputated limb”

    That’s not Spencer Rattler, it’s DE Ronnie Perkins. Both wear #7

    • Paul Lukas | December 31, 2020 at 9:12 am |

      Thank you! Fixed.

  • Chris Weber | December 31, 2020 at 9:14 am |

    Just a thought:

    Since the Rose Bowl will be played in Texas this year, how cool would it have been if those jersey patches had yellow blooms instead of the usual red?

    Happy New Year to everyone.

    -C.

    • James Gilbert | December 31, 2020 at 2:09 pm |

      That just made think of the late Bluebonnet Bowl, another flower based bowl name.

  • Weston | December 31, 2020 at 9:33 am |

    Thanks for all you do Paul

  • BvK | December 31, 2020 at 9:59 am |

    Happy New Year, Paul! Thanks for making 2020 a great year at Uni Watch, even if it wasn’t so great anywhere else. Here’s to a better 2021.

  • Andrew Ross | December 31, 2020 at 10:03 am |

    It should be a rule that whenever two former ABA teams play each other, they use the red-white-and-blue basketball.

    Including playoff games, even the Finals like that one time the Spurs and Nets played each other.

    • Matt Beahan | December 31, 2020 at 10:35 am |

      I’ll second that.

      I thought it was a nice touch that the Nets broke out the ABA-era throwbacks for a Finals game, would have been better if the Spurs would have followed suit.

    • RICKAZ | December 31, 2020 at 10:59 am |

      Great idea. I’d be happy if they just switched to it full time.

  • Tom Gronek | December 31, 2020 at 10:23 am |

    Hi Paul,

    A question for you. That interview with director of the commercial – was it phone or e-mail? Also, which one do you prefer? It seems like this specific interview would have been a phone interview but that would mean a lot of transcribing the whole thing. An e-mail interview would be a lot of copy-and-paste but you wouldn’t be able to ask follow-up questions right on the spot, instead saving them all for follow-up e-mail. Either way, it was one of the best posts this year. I was especially surprised by how even commercials are able to shoot in far away places like Czechia, just to stick to budgets. Very, very, very fascinating. Happy New Year to your and yours, Paul!

    • Paul Lukas | December 31, 2020 at 10:27 am |

      It was on the phone. (If I do an interview via email or DM, I always say so.)

      I much prefer a phone/voice interview. More genuine, more spontaneous, allows for follow-ups and tangents, etc. Transcribing a phone interview by hand it incredibly tedious and time-consuming, but now there are AI platforms that do a good job of transcribing audio files. The resulting transcripts still require a lot of clean-up, though — not as tedious as doing the whole thing by hand, but it still takes a while. That’s the only advantage of an email interview: It’s essentially self-transcribing.

      Anyway: Glad you liked yesterday’s post!!

  • Mark Graban | December 31, 2020 at 10:25 am |

    Loved the post yesterday, Paul.

    Happy New Year to you and the Tugboat Captain!

  • Grant | December 31, 2020 at 10:28 am |

    Funny coincidence: I actually saw the Dewar’s commercial on TV yesterday evening after reading the post about it. I only watch about 30-45 minutes of broadcast TV a day, so that was neat!

    Happy New Year!

    • Matt | December 31, 2020 at 1:17 pm |

      Dewar’s … neat. I saw what you did there :)

  • ChrisH | December 31, 2020 at 10:45 am |

    Another (Insert Location Here) Strong decal?
    How lazy.
    The subtle shout-out to the officers is a nice gesture.

  • TIm | December 31, 2020 at 11:18 am |

    Re the Rose Bowl, does it bug anyone else that the patches say “Rose Bowl GAME”? I understand it’s there to differentiate the football game from the other Rose Bowl activities (at least, that’s what I think it’s intended to do), but to me it sounds silly. The Rose Bowl GAME vs. you know, all the other Rose Bowls. I don’t recall the GAME part being included when I was younger, but perhaps I just don’t remember. Not sure why that bothers me, other than general crankiness.

    • Matt | December 31, 2020 at 1:21 pm |

      I think this must have to do either with the actual Rose Bowl (the stadium) exerting licensing rights over that name, the NCAA (Pac12/B1O) wanting to preserve flexibility to play (as they are this year) the game elsewhere, or the NCAA wanting to sell naming rights/sponsorship/title advertisements for the game in a way that wouldn’t imply that the Rose Bowl stadium was being named. It could be a lose/lose/lose combo of all three. (And yes, in my youth this was not a distinction.)

      • Rosed | January 3, 2021 at 2:05 pm |

        I think there is also the fact that the Tournament of Roses (which is the name given to the New Year’s Day parade in Pasadena) predates the actual Rose Bowl Game.

  • Bruce | December 31, 2020 at 11:20 am |

    Happy New Year to Paul, Phil & everyone in the Uni Watch community!

  • MJ | December 31, 2020 at 11:43 am |

    It’s great that UGA/Cincy will be color v color. But ironically, each is wearing the color more associated with that game’s opposition. I could see UGA in red jerseys and Cincy in their black primaries. This is going to be weirder than it needs to be.
    Happy New Year and best wishes for 2021 to be less of a dumpster fire than 2020 was.

  • Jim Vilk | December 31, 2020 at 11:57 am |

    A football club in Argentina commissioned its own version of Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam, but with Lionel Messi and Diego Maradona instead of Adam and God

    This makes me sadder than knowing there’s such a thing as a Duke’s Mayo Bowl. Some things you just don’t mess with, people.

    Anyway, Happy New Year, Paul, and thanks for continuing to do what you do!

  • Tim | December 31, 2020 at 12:04 pm |

    Happy New Year, Paul and the Uni Watch team.

  • Julie | December 31, 2020 at 1:36 pm |

    Happy New Year Paul. Thanks for providing entertainment throughout this insane year.

    To comment on the Becky Hammon post (kudos to her, btw) I would say the mask is just over the very tip of her nose. Perhaps enough to cover her nostrils. Though I agree, mask up. Something all coaches seem to be unable to do all game.

  • StLMarty | December 31, 2020 at 2:57 pm |

    In like a lion… out like a dog.
    “It’s kismet!” – Creed Bratton

  • John H. | December 31, 2020 at 3:40 pm |

    I didn’t get around to posting yesterday but I loved the interview and the Bucatini article. In fact, we went out and bought some today at an Italian specialty store that had plenty of stock and a variety of different brands. Gotta love Canada!

    Wishing Paul and everyone else in the commUNIty a very Happy New Year. Here’s hoping for better things in 2021. Cheers!

  • Jerry | December 31, 2020 at 7:07 pm |

    Re: Gale Sayers item

    If you leaf through the pictures at the end of the article, you’ll see quite a few interesting differences in Sayers’ helmets over the years. ( full disclosure – native Chicagoan, my “era”, so I am probably more interested than most)

    In particular, his face mask was either white (pics 6,9, 10, 19, 20, 23) or grey (pics 5, 7, 11, 15, 18), had different types of double bars, some not connected, etc. Oh, the helmet used as a contract signing prop was a “quarterback” single bar, and probably never used by him. Finally, picture 24 shows the faux-back by Champion, style of which may have been by Butkus but not Sayers.

    Pictures 4, 7, 8, 22, & 23 also show off those signatures striped socks.

    Happy New Years Eve, and a better 2021 to the Paul and the entire Uni-verse.

  • Ed | December 31, 2020 at 8:53 pm |

    Happy New Year, Paul and all!

  • Dave L. | January 1, 2021 at 10:09 am |

    Happy New Year Paul. Your site was a daily ritual, comfort, and source of inspiration throughout a woeful year. Here’s to blue skies ahead!