Stupor Bowl

Why do football players make a hundred times more money than Nobel laureates? Why do American high schools students know more about sports teams than they know about the Vietnam War?

Look, football is a game. By any measure of social benefit, it’s less important than the effort to cure cancer, fix our schools, or heal our planet. So . . . why all the fuss?

I’m glad that some people get enjoyment out of this game, but as for me I cannot support its glorification, because to do so would send a message to others that I think this country has its priorities straight, when in fact the opposite is true. Our national priorities are backwards, and football is the epitome of that backwardness.

I live in Seattle, and I can assure you that the “Seattle” Seahawks don’t have any organic connection to this city or its people. The players aren’t from here, they don’t spend much time here, and many of them don’t even live here. Regardless of whether the team wins or loses, it will have little impact on the lives of anyone outside the team and a few obscenely wealthy TV executives.

I would no more cheer for such an organization than I would cheer for Microsoft or General Motors.

In the end, the Super Bowl is just a lot of money and energy down the drain . . . resources that could have been used to do better things.

~ David Preston  2/2/14


Top Ten Seahawks by Salary

Zach Miller
Sidney Rice
Russell Okung
Marshawn Lynch
Chris Clemons
Red Bryant
Max Unger
Brandon Mebane
Percy Harvin
Michael Bennett


Top Ten NFL Quarterbacks by Salary

1. Peyton Manning, Broncos – $18,000,000
2. Michael Vick, Eagles – $12,500,000
3. Matt Ryan, Falcons – 11,500,000
4. Philip Rivers, Chargers – $10,200,000
5. Aaron Rodgers, Packers – 8,000,000
6. Jay Cutler, Broncos – 7,700,000
7. Joe Flacco, Ravens – 6,760,000
8. Josh Freeman, Buccaneers – 6,585,000
9. Sam Bradford, Rams – 6,000,000
10. Matt Hasselbeck, Titans – 5,500,000


Washington State College/University Employees by Salary

Agency Title Name Job Title 2010 Gross Earnings



 Top 10 Surgeon Salaries (national average)

1.    Orthopedic surgery — spine: $714,088
2.    Neurological surgery: $701,927
3.    Cardiovascular surgery — pediatric: $681,408
4.    Neurological surgery — pediatric: $656,282
5.    Cardiology — electrophysiology: $601,111
6.    Orthopedic surgery — hip and joint: $589,267
7.    Cardiology — invasive-interventional: $586,765
8.    Dermatology — Mohs surgery: $586,083
9.    Cardiovascular surgery: $567,171
10.  Orthopedic surgery — trauma: $562,688


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16 Responses to Stupor Bowl

  1. DBP says:

    The city benefits from sports, no doubt. But it also pays for sports, in terms of traffic jams, subsidized stadiums, and so on.

    I’d like to see an honest comparison of how much pro teams bring the city in jobs and taxes vs. how much they cost. Then I’d like to see that number compared to how much some other investment – like a high-tech research facility – might have returned. Nobody’s ever done a comparison like that. When the basketball stadium was still on the table I kept asking for some hard numbers on what it would cost vs. what it would earn, but no one could ever provide them. Nobody’s ever even done a serious study of that, probably because they’re afraid of what the results will show.

    But hey, I get how people like to celebrate. If we were kicking ass over in some Third World country right now (instead of getting our asses kicked) people would be celebrating that, too. People will always get a hard-on over the idea that “their” team is winning.

  2. Rats In A Cage says:

    We’re on the same page David. But what I am currently ticked off about is reading where Dow, Mayor Murray, and Gov Inslee will be in the parade too. I feel like they are just weasling in on the Seahawks’ 15 minutes. I mean arguably there is a connection, most likely for Mayor Murray but the other two? Come on!

  3. Duckitude says:

    Hi D-Man: I am with you 100% on the sentiment, but the rationale for the sentiment, not so 100%. And, Jiggers, while making points on the cash and commerce thing, misses D-Man’s other important points and concerns.

    I my humble opinion, no one coerced the usa-sheeples to “love” football, or for that matter, any other “blood” sport. It’s in their blood (pun intended but, also, very true). Apparently, our culture has fine tuned blood sports to the point that they don’t seem so bloody after all, as in the times of gladiators and such, and are “acceptable” ways of getting your dopamine fix compared to the wild west days when a good bar fight or gunfight worked pretty darn well. Seems those wild west dopamine hits have been outlawed… jeez.

    I don’t have the time to explain it all, but, clearly, the reigning US culture characteristics are here today due to the influences of the characteristics, turn-ons, preferences, styles, and values of the majority of the population. I can tell you for sure, that the minority subcultures have made contributions, but are clearly not responsible for the reigning or most widely embedded features known as particularly American.

    So, if you want to see those characteristics, widely accepted values, styles, and priorities change to something that might be considered more logical, rational, or my god, mindful, you would have to help the majority of Americans to understand how the dopamine hits from most of what Americans treasure, are just that, temporary and only transitory fixes. They can go there without feeling sick (excess dopamine is responsible for all nausea and vomiting), and they will feel and think better while that dopamine fix lasts. Then, its back to the doldrums…

    So, you can’t argue with “feeling good” unless it has a huge downside along with it. I submit, there are huge downsides from the values perpetuated by “blood” sports. It’s not good for civilization, for humanity, or for planet earth in the long run. Try convincing any of the typical usa-sheeples about the downside of not recognizing the widespread vulnerabilities in the western hemisphere populations, and they will look at you like, “so.”

  4. ittybitty says:


    Here is the kicker, just wait and see what happens when another team wants one of the main guys(I don’t even know their names) and offers him more money.

    HMMM where will that loyalty be???

  5. DBP says:

    Sporting events – even the “big” ones – are not news. Or if they are, they’re news in the same sense that a non-entity like Kim Kardashian is “news.” These things don’t constitute reality but rather an escape from it, a convenient distraction, an easy alternative to thinking.

    Sadly, there is nothing new under the sun. Before the world had professional sports (or airhead celebrities) it had something very similar. What was it? –The Church.

    Religious processions. Witch burnings. “Miracles.” You name it. These things were the Super Bowl of the Dark Ages.

    And the parallels don’t end there. Just follow the money. In the Dark Ages, money flowed from the pockets of the poor into Church coffers. Back then, Joe Peasant dropped his coin into the coffer and it went to buy jewels for the Pope. Now, Joe Sixpack drops $50 for a game ticket and a beer. And where does the money go? To build yet another shrine to the ego of Paul Allen.

    When will they ever learn?

  6. Rats In A Cage says:

    The fact that the NFL doesn’t pay taxes is BS.

  7. Jiggers says:

    You can also say that about churches and indian casinos as well Rats..

  8. Rats In A Cage says:

    Yeah and I say start with taxin’ tha shit outta Scientology!

  9. DBP says:

    Yesterday, my granddaughters’ school, Roxhill Elementary, announced that any student who skipped school to watch the Seahawks parade would not be counted as absent. Although this seems outlandish, I believe this was actually a compromise solution, since some people had been pressuring the principal to close the whole school for a day. In response to the principal’s decision, I sent the following e-mail to her and all the school staff:

    Ms. Sahnica Washington, Principal
    Roxhill Elementary School

    Dear Sahnica:

    Thank you for dismissing those Roxhill students who will be at the Seahawks parade today. Given that many parents would have taken their kids out of school anyway, regardless of what you did, that was the right call. As for my granddaughters, they will both be in school today, learning. They will not be attending any celebrations staged for the benefit of millionaire athletes, beer companies, and television networks. The amount of money and resources this country wastes on professional sports is obscene, especially in comparison with how little is spared for education. Must our schools go begging for crumbs while politicians hand the city keys to a gang of modern-day gladiators? It’s absurd!

    While were on the topic of celebrations, though, I would like to personally celebrate you and the Roxhill staff for your great work and for keeping your priorities right-side-up in this upside-down world.

    Please let me know when the city has a parade for teachers. We’ll be there.

    –David Preston

    This is my way of reminding teachers that there are still a few people out here who know the difference between what’s real and what’s just make believe.

  10. DBP says:

    You’re right, Jiggs. The Seahawks won the Super Bowl. That’s not the make-believe part. What IS make-believe is this idea that a Seahawks victory somehow makes people in Seattle better than people in any other place.

    It’s obvious what’s going on there. People go around feeling crappy about their lives most of the time, but when “their” team wins, suddenly they’re the shit.

    It’s like those Christian fanatics who think God loves them more than everyone else, just because they believe in some doctrinal fine point. When you take a closer look, you find that these people don’t have much of anything else going on their lives, so they bet everything on that one card.

  11. DBP says:

    Now we see people riding around Seattle with Seahawks flags and banners flying from their cars. Hm. What does that remind me of?

    Can you say “Iraq War”?

    Not saying Seahawks fans are about to attack some Third World country, but I still get the shakes whenever the car flags start popping up. Will all the left-over aggression find a safe outlet, I wonder. Or will it explode?

    Source: McPaper

    With apologies to Langston Hughes . . .

    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    What happens to a team deferred?

    Does it dry up
    like a raisin in the sun?
    Or fester like a sore–
    And then run?
    Does it stink like rotten meat?
    Or crust and sugar over–
    like a syrupy sweet?

    Maybe it just sags
    like a heavy load.

    Or does it explode?

  12. DBP says:

    An anonymous TBQ’er writes:

    Another reason I don’t like sports … Is because of their “fanz” .. There are a lot of assholes, some cool people, but a lot of drunk, loud, assholes.

    One of my friends went to the last playoff game in 2005 (or around there) and as he was takin’ a leak in the mens room when this douche came up next to him with 2 huge beers… he tried to balance them on top of the urinal and one fell. It soaked my friend from the knee down. They guy didn’t say sorry or anything. So, my friend had to watch the game with a wet pant leg, sock, and shoe in 30 degree weather for the next 4 hours.

    A lot of them drive big trucks too. I wonder why.

  13. DBP says:

    On the night of the game, I took my granddaughters out in the car to get an ice cream cone. I expected there would be some loud revelry downtown and was determined to avoid that, but I thought I had nothing to worry about out here in the boonies of Highland Park. (Derp!)

    Well as soon as I got to the first arterial (Delridge) it was blocked by both people and cars. Unfortunately, there were cars behind me (honking naturally) and I couldn’t go forward or backward. We were stuck. A fat chick in a Seahawks jersey was running around between cars banging on windows. (Not sure why she was doing that, but she seemed very disappointed by my lack of enthusiasm for the cause.)

    I was not scared by any of this; I knew that it was just a bunch of fans having fun. My granddaughters, on the other hand, were quite shaken. We got through the intersection after a minute, but then, for some reason, the car behind tailed us the whole way to the ice cream store horn blaring the whole time. WTF!

    I explained to the girls that we weren’t in any danger and that people were just rooting for their team, the Seahawks.

    “We hate Seahawks, Grandpa,” one of them said.

    “I don’t hate them,” said the other. “I just want them to go away.”

    Kids. They say the darnedest things. 🙂

  14. Jack says:

    I hate to sound like a troll but here it goes… Professional sports are by in large a benefit to the communities they represent. Look at the revenue generated thru taxes, the local businesses that cater to the fans. The 700k fans that packed downtown would likely disagree with your poor assessment. It’s clear that you look down your nose to fans and that’s ok. Also it’s commendable that your socially conscious but back off with your holier than thou / I’m better than you because I care about “real” issues.

  15. DBP says:

    You don’t sound like a troll, Jack. But I still say sports gets too much attention in our society relative to other issues. And yes, I realize that’s a minority opinion.

  16. Try again says:

    Pro sports don’t benefit the economy. Pro sports are a classic pyramid scheme.
    I don’t care what sports fans agree with. They’re not thinking. They’re just feeling.
    Sports fans need to try using their heads instead of emotions. Like some always accuse women of doing.
    No one is looking down his nose at fans. It’s the fans who are being unreasonable with petty demands and outbursts.
    The studies have been done. The results are in. Pro sports aren’t a benefit to the economy, no matter how much your personal life revolves around them.
    The world does not revolve around you and what you want or imagine to be true.

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