Google+

COST CUTS

by Peter Brav

            The executive’s name was Tim Riley and he had been at Fox Sports from the beginning, rising through the ranks, crushing subordinates and superiors alike, until he was making a lot more dough than the idiots hitting baseballs 500 feet and knocking downFox_Sports_1994_logo 25-footers with regularity. And that was the problem, they were idiots, fixed costs, crushing expenses that ate into league profits grilled from ten-dollar hot dogs and indirectly the advertising profits of his own beloved network.

All he needed to do this year was convince the ownership at the leagues that they were all permanently expendable and his legacy would be cemented. This was the 21st Century after all; it hadn’t taken other world industries long to realize that if cheap Chinese labor was no longer available, then unemployment should be allowed to rise to the 50% level the doomsayers had long ago predicted. With technology evolution so impressive, year after year, America and the world were on the way. And that’s what had given him his big idea. It wasn’t as simple as just shutting all the leagues down and buying up the big video game companies but it was close.

Hadn’t Americans led the way for all of the civilized world to follow in learning the joy of watching sports that no one ever heard of twenty-four hours a day? Did it matter if you watched Jacques Cousteau diving in 1973 or 2013? Was there any depreciation in the wonder of watching bow hunters sneak up on deer or duck with Curt Gowdy whisper narrating? Didn’t everyone love ESPN Classic? Was there anything better than interviews with Bill Russell and Oscar Robertson? Weren’t the voices of Howard Cosell, Mel Allen, Vin Scully, Keith Jackson, and Don Meredith intended to ring out forever? Sure they were, and the fact that millions of Americans could watch Lew Alcindor and UCLA play Elvin Hayes and Houston in the Astrodome in 1968 like it was The Wizard of Oz or It’s a Wonderful Life proved his point. Best Games in League History on the Big Ten Network? Check. Celtics against Rockets in the ‘86 Finals? Check. Olajuwon against Jordan, Eckersley serving to Kirk Gibson, Bill Mazeroski swatting the mighty Yankees, West against Frazier, North Carolina State beating Georgetown, Montana to Dwight Clark at the back of the end zone? Check, check, check, check, check, check, check.

And who could really enjoy dragging one’s tired body to the ballpark, arguing with the wife, refereeing between the kids, fighting the traffic on the parkway and the crowds on the escalators, all for three or four plays that usually transpired when you were at the head peeing out twenty dollars in warm beer? What for? So you could sit behind an obstruction pole or a 300-pound former right tackle and then run into your smarter college classmate coming out of a luxury suite, his zipper halfway down and lobster tail stuck in his teeth?

Tim was positively giddy with excitement, with the possibilities. Just as most teachers could be eliminated with online courses from one really smart guy, they could get rid of them all, once and for all. A-Rod, gone. Lebron, decide this. New wimpy NFL, fretting over uncounted brain injuries and incapacity and premature demise, take up flag football. Soccer, give up already, only parents of little kids watch and then only till puberty. Fox and ESPN and the others owned the rights permanently in every medium known to mankind. Who would lament the loss of a regular season game in June between the Brewers and the Angels when they could sit home and watch Pirates lifer William Stanley Mazeroski’s 10 to 9 walk-off against Ralph Terry and the Yankees at Forbes Field? Maybe it was as simple as replaying the entire 1964 season in 2014, the 1965 season in 2015, and so on and so forth. That would give them fifty years and by that time they’d think of something new or simply rewind. Those were details and he had a staff and test marketing for all that.

All his plan needed was the cooperation of the owners whom he knew would be enticed by the certainty of more money. A permanent lockout. A shutdown. The stadiums were big, and usually taxpayer-financed, and the citizenry would demand some accountability there. But that’s why God created flea markets, wasn’t it? Giant flea markets with as many flowery placemats and used designer jeans as any community could absorb.

Tim leaned back in his chair and smiled. Rupert Murdoch liked big thinkers and no one would ever accuse Tim of being anything but again. He was buzzing with excitement and ideas and could hardly contain himself. Could he license ESPN’s Top Ten Plays, they had to have a hundred thousand of them by now, and just how long would that last? How much would the top players want in appearance fees knowing they would be talking about their own long ago history and not today’s game? It wasn’t going to be an easy sell but he knew he would succeed because it was just too obvious. Couch potatoes just wanted their couches and their screens and those were the only things he knew he wouldn’t be getting rid of.

,

Entertainment

Top Ten DVD List for June 27, 2017

  This Week’s DVD Releases by Kam Williams Top Ten DVD List for June 27, 2017               The Lodger [Alfred Hitchcock Silent Film] https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B06XP1WFQF/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20 Trespass [25th Anniversary Collector's Edition] https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B06XHR8T93//ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20 Money [Heist Gone Bad Crime … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Books

Gil’s Goodwill!

  Gil Robertson The “Book of Black Heroes” Interview with Kam Williams Gil's Goodwill! For nearly three decades, writer/author Gil L. Robertson, IV has used the written word to enlighten, empower and uplift. The one-time political organizer initially made his mark in entertainment journalism, penning over 50 national magazine covers and contributing bylines to a wide range of publications that include the Los Angeles Times, the Atlanta … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

The Day After the Day Of

  The Day After the Day Of by Paul Ilechko   The sky sheds its tears. This morning is the morning of the day after. The day of mourning, the day after the day of.  I beseech the sky to shed tears in order to wash away the tears on my face.   This is the first day of the time after. This is the beginning of a new time, the days of pain, the days of sorrow. We are in mourning. The sky looks down and sheds its tears for … [Read More its Good For You...]

Real Estate

How to Hire a Winner in Real Estate

  How to Hire a Winner in Real Estate by Amy Lignor   You want to buy that new house because the twins are on their way. Little Betty and Little John are already there, but who knew you would have even more so soon? What’s that? Oh…well, of course, in order to buy that new home with four bedrooms instead of two, you will also need to sell your present homestead in order to get the money needed to start paying on a new one. And, of … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Lifestyle

Ejogo’s Largo!

    Carmen Ejogo The “It Comes at Night” Interview with Kam Williams Ejogo's Largo! Carmen Ejogo has established a distinguished career in both feature films and television. She is best known thus far for her leading role of civil rights activist ‘Coretta Scott King’ opposite David Oyelowo in Ava DuVernay's universally acclaimed SELMA as well as being singled out for her ‘mind-blowing’ lead role as Sister in SPARKLE alongside … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

Fishing for swordfish in Louisiana? You bet

  Fishing for swordfish in Louisiana? You bet by Craig Lamb The Mississippi River delta and surrounding offshore waters are without a doubt some of the richest fishing waters in the world. Venice, Louisiana, is the hub for reaching the richest saltwater game fish waters in the U.S. Yellowfin tuna. Snapper. Grouper. Wahoo. Dolphin. Marlin. And lately, there are swordfish. If you want to experience the latest hot trend in Louisiana … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

You Don’t Have to be Greek to be a “Zorba” Fanatic

  You Don’t Have to be Greek to be a “Zorba” Fanatic by Amy Lignor   No, the sport is not called ‘Zorba’, but it most definitely fits for this article’s title. This most unusual sport is actually called ‘Zorbing’, and has caught on like wildfire across the globe. And now, seeing as that the NBA has wrapped, with Golden State proving that they were determined to make amends for last season; and with the NHL closing up shop for the season … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Add Value with Summer Home Renovation Projects

  Add Value with Summer Home Renovation Projects by Amy Lignor   There are a whole list of summer activities for you and the kids planned. Most of them, of course, you want to be nothing but fun, such as grilling outside on the patio or swimming in the pool. However, having the backyard pool and patio are two things you really need in place before either of those activities could be enjoyed. And building this area could be a great … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

Finding Relaxation in the Most Remote Locations of All

    Finding Relaxation in the Most Remote Locations of All by Amy Lignor   It is a fact that the largest travel locations are also beyond popular. Among the downsides of this fact is that when you’re looking for peace, quiet, and basically a chance to do nothing more than spend time with yourself and, perhaps, one other best friend, the most popular places don’t offer that. In other words, it is the most remote (sometimes most … [Read More its Good for You...]

Green Living

Creating the Perfect Vegetable Garden

  Creating the Perfect Vegetable Garden by Amy Lignor   Many are still dealing with that wintery mix Mother Nature just loves to toss down from the sky this time of year. Yet, that gardener living inside the soul – the one just dreaming of the sunny skies and lazy rainy days that are must-haves in order to grow the best vegetables possible – is already jotting down the facts, tricks and tips they need to know in order to make that … [Read More its Good for You...]