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By the Book

by Archives October 30, 2007

Twice this week, events transpired that made me take a step back from sports and think about bigger things.
I was at practice when the Alouettes let the members of the press who were wondering why Anthony Calvillo wasn’t at Olympic Stadium that his wife was diagnosed with B-cell lymphoma, a type of cancer. And seeing the unbelievable pictures of the wildfires in San Diego, you get reminded where sports are on the totem pole.
As fans, people take sports too seriously sometimes, and times like these force us, as fans and people, to think differently about the games. To realize that sports are entertainment and other things are more important.
Suddenly, the Alouettes free fall doesn’t matter, and what were the Chargers thinking when they told the 10,000 people staying at Qualcomm Stadium to find somewhere else to stay, because they had a football game to play. Right? Wrong.
Robert Wettenhall, the owner of the Alouettes probably wouldn’t enjoy seeing his team, and the players he is paying to play, give up on their season, not to mention that the San Diego Chargers have close to 100,000 fans who paid for a game on Sunday.
As much as sports is fun and games for us, it’s a livelihood and business for others. Speaking to Jason Maas and Marcus Brady last week after hearing that Anthony Calvillo would be taking a leave of absence they were obviously thinking about their teammate, but they also realized that they still had a job to do on the field.
The San Diego Chargers had around 40 members of their organization evacuated from their home this week, as they were preparing to face the Houston Texans. They had their minds elsewhere, with good reason, but come Sunday they still had to play a game. It’s one of those things that often gets forgotten in the fact that sports are entertainment. The athletes, coaches and owners all have a job to do, like you and me, regardless of things happening around them.
And that is why we love sports. Because, no matter what happens to us in our personal lives, any tragedies that hit close to home, sports is there.
It was there after Sept. 11. It was there after Katrina. For people in the San Diego area, it’s there in midst of the wildfires. And for the Montreal Alouettes, it’s a chance for them to show their teammate he’s on their minds.

Steal a base, steal some ratings

Oh, Fox. I told you last week that you didn’t have to worry about ratings. Red Sox Nation is there. But I understand that you had a deal with Taco Bell beforehand when it looked like you may have had a Cleveland-Colorado World Series.
People will look at the ‘Steal a base, Steal a taco’ promotion, where for a stolen base in the World Series, everyone can get a free taco at Taco Bell in the U.S., as another reason Americans are overweight. I see it differently. I see this as a brilliant marketing tool by Fox to get all the overweight Americans to watch the game (and raise ratings) so that they can see if they can get a free taco the next day.
Heck, there might be more Taco Bell fans watching the World Series for a taco then there are baseball fans watching it for the baseball.
I guess it doesn’t matter now, since the Red Sox won their second World Series in 90 years and I’m pretty sure that the ratings stayed stagnant once again.
As for the Rockies? There’s always next year; when I’ll pick them to win the division again and they’ll finish a distant third place and out of the playoffs.
The Rox can blame television and Taco Bell for the loss.

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