Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Sports broadcasting has to be a tough one

Sports broadcasting is an interesting job, at least I would like to think so. You get the chance to watch and talk about a sport that you most likely love. What could be better than that?

As good as the job might seem to the average person, I'm sure it comes with its share of hardships. You would probably need to have a pretty thick skin sometimes. There's probably no shortage of criticism on what you say, what you don't say, your catch phrases or where you rank on, let's call it the "homer-meter."

For every person that thinks play-by-play guy X is the best in the business, there are a couple others who think that person is the worst. It's just the way it is. Some are boring, some are high-energy and some sound like they're on the verge of cardiac arrest.

I'm always curious to know what others think about broadcasters. So feel free to comment and give your thoughts.

'We' and 'us'
One point with broadcasters got me thinking recently. Is it OK for them to say "we" and "us" when they're talking about one of the teams? Is it different if they're the hometown broadcasters for the home team? What about during national broadcasts?

Maybe it's just the reporter in me, but I feel there should be a little more objectivity than that. Using "we" and "us" tells me that you're a part of that team. You play with them. If you don't, then don't talk like you do. It just strikes me as odd. It lessens the separation between the athletes and the broadcasters up in the booth.

I think it's much better to talk about the team using its name (Wild) and location (Minnesota). But that's just me and why I'm not in charge of sports broadcasters out there. There will always be things to pick on and mull over when it comes to what broadcasters say (or don't), but I'd really like it if "we" and "us" could be taken off the vocabulary lists.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

A good story from the bingo hall

Alright, so I'm going a little off topic with this entry. I'm going to write about bingo. While bingo is most definitely a game, I'm not going to try and make the case that it's a sport.

If I haven't already lost you by revealing my topic, which can be thrilling to some and mind-numbing to others, let me just add that I've played bingo a few times here in Austin with my co-workers. It really is quite fun, but maybe that's mostly because of the people I'm with, or because we've got adult beverages next to our bingo cards.

Anyway, a story unfolded this past Thursday night at bingo that I wanted to share. I didn't have evening plans, so my friend Kay suggested I ask our friend Kevin to go play bingo. We didn't have the trio at bingo this time since Kay had other plans, a decision she may have regretted later.

Lots of different ways to bingo
If memory serves, the night consists of 17 games of bingo. Some games the objectives are the postage stamp, the six-pack, the letter "F" or the letter "E." It was the game making the letter "O" of getting the numbers all the way around the border of the bingo card that got me and Kev in trouble this time around.

We were having a good time bingo-ing, chatting in between games and number daubs, when Kev was close to winning the "O" game. In fact, every number on his card had been called, except "O-61" in the upper right-hand corner. We both got nervous as we waited for that last number to be called so Kev could yell "bingo!" and win 50 bucks.

So close to a win... really close
Well, someone else got bingo first and that was that. Until the guy at our table asked what number Kev needed to win, then the gentleman pointed to the lit-up bingo board and told Kev he "had it." Yes, "0-61" had already been called who knows how many numbers ago during the game, Kev missed it and was therefore out of some easy money, and the pride that comes with winning a game of bingo.

After the shock and noisy sobs of disappointment stopped from the both of us (just kidding), we went right along with the next bingo game. From then on though, I made sure to double-check Kev's cards for the numbers being called, which wasn't the easiest since we were sitting across the table from each other so his numbers were upside down to me.

Kev was still pretty upbeat and was content with getting out of the evening with a good story to tell. I had a fun night just hanging out with him, and our friend LeAnn afterward as well. Of course, we had to text our chum Kay because we knew she'd want to hear about the near-win. She only yelled at us a little for our bingo incompetence. Again, just kidding.