Sunday, January 20, 2008


Pro Football, Seattle Style

At the end of 'This Is Spinal Tap,' heavy metal band stalwart Nigel Tufnel contemplates retirement for the 57th time:
"Well, I suppose I could, uh, work in a shop of some kind, or … or do, uh, freelance, uh, selling of some sort of, uh, product. You know … like maybe in a, uh, haberdasher, or maybe like a, uh, um … a chapeau shop or something …"
At the end of the Seattle Seahawks season, coaching stalwart Mike Holmgren contemplates retirement for the 57th time:
"I've always wanted to buy a bookstore. You know, sell some of those muffins and a little coffee. I don't care if we make any money. I don't want to lose a lot of money, but we could visit with people and get books. People say I could never do that. The cynics in the world say if you've been in this business, to all of a sudden do that, you can't do it. I would say, 'Maybe, maybe not."
Mmm-hmmm. Let's see, an NFL ex-head coach running a book store...you can just see the customer relations possibilities. "Tolstoy? You're buying Tolstoy?? Jesus Christ in a sidecar, dumbass, that's for high school. Is that where you want to go? Maybe you need to start doing a better job in here! Aiming a little higher! Maybe you failed to notice our display, our prominent goddamned display of the past 25 Booker Prize winners. Which is nearly hitting you in the ass! Put down Anna Frickin' Karenina, let's get underneath your personal bullshit and get down to work. Here's a copy of The Inheritance of Loss, by Kiran Desai. Get over to that reading desk and I don't want to see you move for at least two hours! We might make you into a halfway decent reader yet."

Seattle Seahawks owner Paul Allen, recognizing a clever negotiating ploy, put the kibosh on Holmgren's dreams of lattes and little muffins by forking over the Jimi Hendrix Museum, the San Francisco Reserve Bank, and an undisclosed country (rumored to be full of benighted savages waiting to receive chocolate chip cookies and the light of Christ) to keep Holmgren on The Farm for another year. And Mike, if you're serious about this bookstore thing and not just weirding us all out, I have the perfect place for you: it's just up the street, with the best books in town, wonderful coffee and muffins. It's called Third Place Books.

6 comments:

Zoey & Me said...

My Redskins are looking for a coach. We pay Mega Bucks. Think we can get Holmgren interested?

Phil said...

That's one of the funniest things I've read in a long while.

MarcLord said...

Yes, Me-person, it's a simple matter of buying him a bookstore, and maybe promising regular meetings with the next President.

Seriously, Holmgren needs a change of venue, and the other Washington would be a good place for him.

MarcLord said...

Why thank you, Phil!

Holmgren's quote just begged for a send-up, and my memories of how football coaches really talk are clear and unadorned.

isabelita said...

I'm not even a sports fan like the mister, and I thought this was bloody hilarious. Pointed it out to him, actually! Well done.

MarcLord said...

Well that's two points in your favor, Iz, and thanks! First because you don't waste your time on the intentional distractions of the Coliseum, second because Seattle is a hinterland for national sports, football in particular.

The Seapups are one of the only NFL franchises to have never won a championship. Watching their first and last Super Bowl appearance was like sitting behind the rail in a court where the judge was swigging whiskey from two different bottles the defense lawyer bought him.

Pittsburgh may be a hollowed-out steel town with dim prospects now, and Seattle may host Boeing, Microsoft, Adobe, and Starbucks, but Pittsburgh has won 5 Super Bowls. It takes a while to work, but championships go where the money goes.

Seattle will buy the prize when we feel like it, probably after the Holmgrens, nice people, bring the gospel to the headhunters in Papua, New Guinea. We live in the sheltered fjiords which supply all of Asia, and we'll do fine.