I Ain’t Paying For That

From the blog that has produced such classic hits as The Vibe and Speaking Of, comes the latest look inside the sick mind of its content wizard. Apologies in advance, and please, if you find this piece to be objectionable or ill suited to anyone with common sense, feel free to register your complaints here.

This article of my constitution has to do with big league sports and why I refuse to pay in. I haven’t been to a Yankees game in years while my consumption of the other three sports has rendered me anorexic. To paraphrase Dickens, I don’t have anything against big league sports and I have everything against big league sports.


NFL commissioner Roger Goodell signs contract extension

Roger Goodell- He’s the NFL’s rain maker. By 2027, the league will be raking in approximately 25 billion pigskins annually; only two years late on Goodell’s projection all the way back in 2010. That’s some primo caviar cake if you’re an owner, but just another bill if you’re on the other side of the ticket window.

Europe has become a thing, with several games a year played on the other side of the pond. Which is great news if you live in Frankfurt or Great Britain, but not so great news if you’re a season ticket holder stateside and they’re stealing one of your Sundays.

The Commish once proclaimed PSL’s as “good investments. These personal seat licenses are annual fees you pay in order to own a seat. and can range from $500 to $100,000. For a seat. Your safety isn’t guaranteed and neither is the starting time if the league decides to flex your 1 o’clock game to prime time for the cash. If you live in a cold weather city, sucks to be you!

I ain’t paying for that.

Kyrie Irving Covers Nike Shoe Logo W/ 'I Am Free' Sticker After Split From Brand

Kyrie Irving- The dude ain’t evil, but he is a schmuck on wheels. The media culls for content and Kyrie is trough-ready, with clueless and sometimes hurtful commentary that shows how insular his privileged world truly is; he’s a poster man-child for the baller brats who wish to maximize their bank accounts sans the sweat.

Irving might’ve been an all-timer if he had put in as much work in the gym as he does out of it but the narrative of his career will speak to all the talent he left on his cutting room floor. He might play lights out for the rest of the season and lead the Mavericks on a deep playoff run. Or he might decide to take a vacation to clear his head. You never know with Kyrie.

I ain’t paying for that.

Behind That Bonkers Golden Knights Pregame Show: 'We Threw Everything On The Wall' : The Two-Way : NPR

The Coolest Game On Earth Lost Its Mind- The NHL is as close as I’ll come to extending an olive branch to watching a live performance. It’s the most exciting of the four major sports in real time and you mostly get what you pay for. But the very fact that a team such as the Las Vegas Golden Knights can live and breathe in their league really turns me off. If you’ve not seen their pre-game show, don’t. It would make Wayne Newton cringe.

I ain’t paying for that.

This used to be my playground- I’ll still take in a baseball game so long as it’s minor league or independent in nature. But the MLB will remain in my rearview until doubleheaders, day World Series games and bunting become a thing again. In other words, nah.

The game can still captivate me, but these days it’s in small doses. For every Ohtani. there’s a Tatis, whose boundless talents get snagged in a perpetual cycle of bad decisions. For every Steve Cohen who- love it or loathe it- will do anything to make the Mets a winner, you have Reds owner Phil Castellini, who has threatened to move the team out of the town they’ve called home for more than one hundred and fifty years. For every team like the Rays, who milk every last penny out of their roster in order to field a winner, you have the Marlins, who didn’t get that memo.

And now we’re getting change for our dollar’s worth. But all the artificial sweeteners the league has added to a sport that is damn near unrecognizable won’t cure their ills. We’ll get pitch clocks when making the batter stay in the box and the pitcher stay on the mound works better. And oh yeah, fewer commercials (Peter Ueberroth forbid!) would shave palenty off the average game.

If you’re waiting for baseball to return to its roots, take a seat because it’s going to be a while. For that to happen, the sport would have to buy into the fundamentals. They would have to choose substance over swagger. They would have to stop emulating the faster, meaner sports and get back to churching with Kinsella and Kahn and Angell. It would be an abrupt departure from the coordinates they are currently following. And they would have to admit their glory days are entirely in the rearview. Unless or until they get down with some common sense?

I ain’t paying for that.

42 thoughts on “I Ain’t Paying For That

  1. B

    I must protest your opening paragraph. The text that follows is full of common sense. On YOUR part.

    Big league sports have gotten a tad too powerful, don’t you think? It is time more people chose not to pay for that. And bonus? You’re looking mighty svelte, so there is that.

    I don’t know where I stand on the European thing. If they were games over and above the regular season, that would be one thing.

    PSL’s? Wow… People gotta be another level of nut (read: money in quantities to spare).

    Love the term “trough-ready” it is so perfectly descriptive of certain peeps in the manner of Kyrie Irving.

    Las Vegas should not even be contenders! And what in the blessed hell is that ridonkulous show of a pre-game shit?

    Minor league baseball will give you something for you money, at least! Yeah, whatever happened to the double headers and daytime games?

    Seems to me the games last forever (and not in the good sense, either), commercials and replays and replays and dicking around on the mound and in the box and let’s go already!

    Just like most things, once they are gone, they ain’t never coming back. It’s too bad. I can think of a few sports that I loved, back in the day.

    Perfect song choice, of course!


    Liked by 1 person

    • Q

      Alas, in pro sports the common sense has gone AWOL. I cut out about four hundred words because when I wrote this other day it was a scalding take on pro sports and well, that’s become redundant.

      I’ll do me own sports, that’ll show ’em! Cross training and a responsible-ish diet to boot! Who needs sports ball?!

      Pro sports gets bigger and bigger and fans complain about it and yet . . they still buy in. And I don’t buy the “Well it’s their hobby” nonsense. They can grab another hobby, there are tons of better things to do with your time.

      Exactly. They could and should play exhibition games in Europe. I mean, why not have half the league plug the stadiums over there with a couple weeks worth of exhibition games- fans on this side don’t care about them nearly as much. Then rotate the other half of the league the following season and so on and so forth.

      THAT is insanity. Stupidity. And every other -ity that rhymes with clueless.

      Irving finds himself to be the most interesting man in the world. His thoughts, however, are child like in nature.

      Vegas is a shame. I’m sorry but I’ll never be okay with Vegas hockey.

      The minors and independent leagues actually go the extra foot for their fans. Free parking, tons of promotional nights, easy access to the players before the game.

      I remember going to double headers. And I remember watching World Series games played during the day. Nuts.

      The replays are another one. IR was instituted as a way to correct egregious mistakes. Instead, it’s used for the most miniscule of flaws. The umps stand around studying it as if it’s the Zapruder tapes.

      I don’t miss not going to live sporting events. I always felt like watching it on TV was a much better idea anyway.

      To Hall and that other guy!


      Liked by 1 person

      • I fear you are correcto. And it’s hard not to spew when we are frustrated. Good thing we leave and come back, reread and fix 😉

        There ya go! I’ll be your personal cheerleader!

        It’s a crock. A hobby should not cause a strain on the marital purse, so to speak. And you can’t complain yet still dish it out. People are afraid to take a stand, even on this.

        I think exhibition games outside of the North America would be fun for all – players and those in the stands.

        It really is. And honestly, how many who are dishing out the bucks are doing it for other reasons than to say they can?

        Isn’t it always the case? He who blabbers, blathers…

        Neither will I. It’s wrong on every level.

        Right! They make it worth going to the games.

        I remember hearing about double-headers and seeing games in the afternoon.

        Do not get me started on the IR. It’s like a plague. Am I wrong in thinking basketball is the one that uses it the least? I honestly don’t know because I cannot stand to watch it.

        I did like going once in a blue moon but can’t say I miss it. Like you said we see so much more on TV.

        Hah! Hey, be nice to Oates…

        Liked by 1 person

        • Haha! I never woulda caught so muchisimas gracias to you for the “auto” correction there. And yeah, spewing on about sports is almost passé at this point. I haven’t even watched a game in a while.

          Gimme a B!

          Remember when all those people were railing on about Kaepernick, after which they vowed to never watch the NFL again? Well this past Super Bowl drew huge ratings and I umm . . have to wonder. . . .

          I don’t really think the Europeans give a flip whether or not the game counts. Their football is played a different way.

          The Super Bowl itself has become a corporate venture. The regular fan dips hard into their savings just to attend.

          The last double-header I remember going to was the Mets vs the Cardinals at the old Shea Stadium.

          I haven’t watched a basketball game in forever but I think you’re right. Unlike tennis, which actually has INSTANT replay, the rest of the sports are far behind.

          TV is just fine. Plus when you get bored? You can turn on your favorite streaming service.

          Oh . . is that his name? 😉

          Liked by 1 person

          • You’d do the same for me. There seems to be less talk nowadays (or maybe I’m just no longer part of those circles).

            Gimme a Q!

            That was a joke. I really feel for Kaepernick, to be honest. Peeps have done way worse than taking a knee and gotten away with it. Proof that peeps are all talk.

            I think you are right. And I wonder how many give a flip about whatever is being played in their backyard anyway.

            I cannot believe the price they charge for the damn game. How the fuck is a regular family supposed to afford that?

            Were double-headers with the same two teams? That sounds exhausting, no?

            Tennis has INSTANT replay, played once and we move on. I cannot remember ever seeing instant replay on the small snippets of basketball games I might have perused while preparing my supper or something…

            TV is perfect. And yes, something else is just a flip of the remote away.

            Uh huh 😉


          • 😉

            Yeah, big league sports has whittled itself into just another streaming curiosity at this point. Sadly.

            We have murderers and rapists but nope, let’s focus all of our hate on a guy who takes a knee. And I’ll say it again. I do not agree with Kaepernick on much, but I do support his right to take a fucking knee. This ain’t hard people.

            They don’t.

            Families have been priced out. And for many, on the occasion they do attend, it’s akin to a vacation. As in. they take it out of the same fund.

            It was the same two teams. It was like a double feature. Somehow, it was cool at the time. Maybe it wouldn’t be for me, but I bet the kids would love it. IF they started at 1 and both games were over by about 5-5:30. Yeah, two games used to be played in that short a time.

            I don’t remember it ever being an issue in the Association so they probably have their shit straight.

            Which is what I shoulda done a couple weeks ago.


            Liked by 1 person

          • 😚

            It really has. Well, for many of us, anyway! I still know some die-hards who will never give it up.

            It boggles the mind how that knee had such a huge impact. And how many murders/rapes/assaults are still acceptable to these owners? It’s a load of bullshit.

            No, they don’t.

            If the whole family is nuts for the sport (and let’s be honest, how many 4-member families are all gung-ho?) then maybe they are good with that. It’s a helluva price to pay for a few hours of “family-time”.

            Wow. Then again, it didn’t take forfuckingever to play a game then so… it must be fun.

            We have to assume so.

            What the hell were we thinking? I promise you we will NOT make that same mistake again!


            Liked by 1 person

          • 😚

            I know a few as well. And welp, it’s their money and time so they can do with it what they wish, I guess.

            Yeah, we have a tough time putting things in their proper perspective, don’t you think?

            I think most families will save for activities closer to home for myriad reasons- from COVID to the instability in many parts of the world and hell, even the US. So big time sports gets lucky on this count since the fam can drop the dough into the fund for a game or two.

            It was also a different time. We had fun with the game within the game. How we would pay a couple bucks for the nosebleed seats- yes, a couple bucks- and then move down as the game went along. Security at the old Shea, when the Mets sucked? Not great. By the end of the game we were living large!

            We dew.

            That was a mistake. I think we just got pulled under by the riptide of hype and the next thing we know . . misery!


            Liked by 1 person

          • 😚

            True dat. I ain’t gonna worry ’bout others…

            Honestly. I can’t even begin to understand their priorities (nor do I want to).

            Yes, seems to me a week camping on the Jersey shore goes a lot further than a couple hours sitting on a hard surface surrounded by screaming fans to family unity. But that’s just me.

            Right? A couple bucks in the nosebleeds and you had a grand time… moving your way down? Part of the whole joy of it, I should think 😉


            It was. We shoulda known bettah. But we are nothing if not smart beings who will not make the same mistake again. Unless…. no…


            Liked by 1 person

          • The first time I told Big Papi I wasn’t interested in going down to Baltimore to see the Dolphins play, he looked at me like I had a hole in my head. Long story short, Miami lost that game by some ridiculous score like 44-0.

            Sorry, I said perspective when it’s painfully clear too many people ain’t got any!

            I never understood the idea myself. But maybe we’re the odd ones.

            It was! We got to see the game from so many different vantage points whilst enjoying the thrill of getting away with something. Even if the truth of the matter is that the Mets of the late 70’s and early 80’s were so pitiful, I think security couldn’t even bring themselves to watch.

            Unless . . . no. Unless . . yes. Unless . . . maybe? The Dolphins show up? And IF the Dolphins show up . . will they know what to do with themselves?



  2. Cheers to the fact that you took a bite out of the big four pro leagues. I haven’t been to an NHL game in over 50 years, an NFL game in 15-20, an MLB game in 2 years, and never to an NBA game.

    Great shoutout to the pathetic Reds ownership. With the season approaching, I’m going for 2 for 2.

    Goodell is a great example of way more means more. His solution for player health and safety is to play more games because more games means more dollars. He’s go to be setting up for expansion in Europe.

    A tip of the cap to your writing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Cincy! You ARE my idol! Seriously, I’m reading this and thinking . . . I’m not alone. Not even close.

      Sad, that is really so damn sad. The Reds are synonymous with baseball for me. First they take away opening day in Cincinnati and now the fans have to deal with the mess this organization has become. Sad.

      That’s probably why I had such an issue with everyone heaping on the Dolphins back when Tua was knocked out on that Thursday night game. Because that example had already been set scores of times before and since.

      Thanks my man


    • You ain’t wrong Pam.

      I’ve often said, the way to end all this nonsense is for fans to stage a mass exodus from the game. Stay away for one year. Things would change in a hurry.

      Will it happen? Uh . . never.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with just about everything you write here.

    I’ve tried to divorce myself from sports. Particularly the NFL. But as I wrote in a recent post, it’s a challenge for me because I still enjoy the stories sports offers up.

    What is saddest for me is baseball. My favorite of the major sports. But it is becoming more and more of a perversion of what it should be and I find myself watching less and less. I still go to the local minor league team a couple of games a year. But I don’t know if I’ll make the drive and spend the small fortune necessary to see the SF Giants play again. Just not worth it.

    Meanwhile, a couple of weeks ago, I went to a college game. A friend’s girlfriend’s boyfriend was on the road, playing a weekend series at a local college. I went to watch him play and take pictures to send to him. It cost $12 to get in. There were no dot races on the scoreboard, no garlic fries in the stands, no $15 beer or $12 hot dogs. Just baseball. I need to do that more often.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Now, for the record King, I do read about the league fairly often. My diet though, it consists mainly of tuning in for the latter part of the second half. There are games I will watch all the way through but it’s rare. I watched those two conference title games a few weeks ago and that didn’t turn out great for me. I felt like I wasted half a day.

      Baseball also happens to be my favorite. There used to be such poetry to the sport, but it’s been replaced with too much loud stuff. And the rules aimed at fixing it are mostly disingenuous ploys that do nothing of the sort.

      THAT is where it’s at. That is the heart of this whole endeavor. Heart. Something the big leagues seem to have forgotten all about.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Like you, this homey don’t play that game. It’s bad enough to watch TNT or ESPN hockey coverage (the worst broadcasters for said games, BTW) and ‘Donkey’ tickets are ridiculously priced. So are Avalanche games which took a big jump after winning the Cup. Comcast still refuses to broadcast the
    Av’s games, leaving the local RSN (Altitude TV but only through DirecTV subscribers) to fill in. Why they don’t do every single game is beyond me. I mean aren’t they subsidized enough with all their sports betting platforms?!

    ‘Luckily’ just when you think the pay to play forces can’t get any more craven or greedy, I heard this story this morning. Two words, Zuckerburg and they aren’t just “go away.” 😬

    Liked by 1 person

  5. The NFL is the only pro sport I follow regularly at this point. The others are pretty much relegated to only playoff time for me, and then it depends on who is playing. There are so many reasons within each pro sport why they have turned me off but there is one common thread which even runs through the NFL…potentially making me re-evaluate my interest in it…replay. I have seen SO many replays in my life which have been interpreted in a way other than I saw them, we might as well go back to having humans closer to the action make the calls and live with their opinions.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. very interesting post and love the hall and oates song at the end – because it fit the topci/theme so well (can’t go for that,no) but also just an upbeat jam!
    and second time tofay with H& O as my spouse made a video earlier with a different song..

    Liked by 1 person

    • You ever watch the webcast, “Live from Daryl’s House”? It’s a monthly webcast where Hall invites different musicians in to jam with him. It’s really good. You can watch it on YouTube.


      Liked by 1 person

      • dude – we used to love that show – have not seen it in a while – but for a short season that was a show we really enjoyed – thanks for reminding me – and the next time the hubs and I are looking for some vids to enjoy – I will add this to our list
        guess what he found for us last month?

        an old version of The Bourne Identity from the 1980s – the whole movie was available on Yotuube and for fans of the The Bourne Identity with Matt Damon – this 1980s movie has many connections –

        thanks for reminding me of Daryl’s show

        Liked by 1 person

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