Friday, July 31, 2009

Imagery problem

The Saints have begun their first practice of the 2009 training camp this morning. And while I'm sure their minds are focused on all the hard work ahead of them, I'm more concerned with the fans and media at this point. Some of them seem to have reported a bit out of shape.

Last night, for example, a caller to WWL radio expressed his hope that this season the Saints' defense would, "step up to the plate." Yes, technically it is still baseball season but the only way I could envision Saints defenders stepping up to the plate would be if Deion Sanders were on the roster. However, the Saints roster continues to feature Jason David in the defensive backfield. Nobody is mistaking Jason David for Deion Sanders.

This morning, Peter Finney presented his first column of Saints Camp '09. It begins,

At a time the innards of Saints fans are always at an immeasurable fever pitch -- we're talking about the opening of training camp -- I'll never forget that 2006 gush of euphoria that was oozing, not from some youngster, dressed in black and gold, waiting to get an autograph, but from none other than Drew Brees.

First of all, ew. Second of all, do we really want to start this season on a feverish innards and gushing ooze note? And if so, why isn't this a story about Jeremey Shockey in Vegas?

Always the gross-out artist, Finney follows this up with a typical-for-him hagiography of the Saints' front office and coaching staff which would have made me feel sicker than the oozing innards did if I hadn't built up an immunity to his schtick over the years. Although the fact that Finney threw in a bit about prosthetic limbs had me wondering for a minute if he was actually doing it on purpose. Certainly this paragraph was intended to, if not nauseate, then at least dizzy the reader a bit.

Now it's Season 4 for Brees, also for Coach Sean Payton, and I'm sure they'll tell you as sky high as the fever was for a changing of the guard in '06, it has kept right on climbing, even though the regular-season numbers have gone from 10-6, and a victory shy of playing in a Super Bowl, to an also-ran 7-9 and 8-8.

What the hell does that even mean? The "fever for a changing of the guard" was "sky high". That sounds like people were upset bout the state of things; ready to "change the guard" in 2006. Okay good. But if Finney is saying that this fever "kept right on climbing" then shouldn't that mean the fans are even angrier? I guess that could be the case since, as Finney says, the team's record hasn't been anything to get all gushy oozey about over the past two years. But Finney's phrasing implies that the "fever" for getting rid of the coach is "climbing" despite the crappy win-loss results. Confused? I know Finney is.

All I can say is thank God this is the first day. But it's not too early to start assigning extra wind-sprints to some individuals... provided they keep their innards hydrated.

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