This is the first in a three part series of posts about the Seattle Sounders’ win over Pumas UNAM in the Concacaf Champions League final last Wednesday. Seattle is the first MLS team to win Concacaf since 2000, and the first ever to do it in the Champions League format. This first part covers what it means for a Major League Soccer team to win it in a historical context, the second will cover Seattle’s relative uniqueness as a MLS team, and the third will cover what other MLS teams can do in the future to emulate the Sounders’ success.
What struck me about Seattle winning the Concacaf Champions League final on Wednesday night was how dramatic it wasn’t. I can’t say I personally had any fantastic visions of what it was going to look like when a Major League Soccer team finally got over the hump of winning the Concacaf Champions League, but I just figured it’d be more difficult for that theoretical team than it turned out to be for the actual Sounders team that dominated Pumas 3-0 on Wednesday.
I was taken aback – I think awestruck, honestly, though in a very minor way, as much as awe can strike you through a computer screen – by the scenery of this US Open Cup third round match between second division Birmingham Legion and third division South Georgia Tormenta on Tuesday night.
MAYDAY! MAYDAY! MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER’S TELEVISION RATINGS ARE POOR! THEY’RE LOWER THAN THE LEAGUE WANTS! DON GARBER WANTS MORE EYES ON SETS AND DEAR GOD HE’S NOT GETTING THEM! WE CANNOT HANDLE THIS MUCH LONGER AND IF WE DON’T FIX IT THE ENTIRE HOUSE OF CARDS IS GOING TO FALL. YOU DON’T WANT TO SEE MAD DONNIE!
I realize that I never really let myself feel like it would happen before last night.
Nobody ever commented on it but I had the same YouTube video linked in my Twitter description for about a decade.
You can look at it on the WayBack Machine, it had been there that long. It was like my junior year of high school and somebody posted that clip of Nic Cage putting on plastic fangs from Vampire’s Kiss in a Skype group I was a part of. After like a year I thought it’d be funny to keep it there. Now it’s on the site forever, now that the account is gone. Continue reading
There are only so many places we can find honest power over our domains anymore in life. Does it not feel that we are all so alienated from what we want in our lives? Isn’t that what we want – control, power? Taking what may seem impossible or unwieldy and taking control of it ourselves? What more is there to desire, ultimately?
And time… Time is that which cannot be changed. Father time, as is said, is undefeated. This is true on many scales, both that aging makes your back hurt when you get up in the morning so you have to stretch and that sometimes two basketball games you want to watch are airing at the same time. This second dilemma… It seemed impossible to overcome, a theoretical mountain higher than any other, especially in the realm of sports wherein the viewing of an event live on-air is so imperative. Impossible to overcome by normal means, and by normal men.
But in the words of one of the athletic world’s greatest minds – I’m a genetic freak and I’m not normal. And neither is my television setup Enter the two-television setup:
It’s too big for him. He’ll get sick. It’s too big. Why did you make him such a big one
I don’t think I’ve ever done a traditional “review” of a book before here. I’ve done video games, movies, even albums, like years ago. It doesn’t feel like it was that long ago that I was doing reviews of pieces of media all the time. “Piece of media” doesn’t feel right to say, too general, but I’m not going to say “works of art” when I used to review, like, Kelly Slater’s Pro Surfer. It hits me the last time that the last time I reviewed a video game or a movie or an album was No Thing for the Switch back in mid-2018. That was nearly four years ago. It doesn’t feel like four years ago, it doesn’t feel that long ago at all, but it was that long ago. Is that just how four years feels? Is it just that a lot of the past two years specifically haven’t felt like they moved at a normal pace? Or do we experience time differently than we used to?
That is, more or less, one of the themes made by Chuck Klosterman in his book The Nineties, published in early 2022 by Penguin Press, a book that I got through in record pace, like maybe a week. The judgment of this book’s quality in this ‘review’ should be summed up by that fact. Because I’ve made a point in recent posts to be more open about stating personal opinions that may lead to ridicule on social media (I genuinely don’t know if this would or not) I should point out that Chuck is probably my favorite living writer, one of the only people for whom I will purchase a new book immediately upon publication without needing to know the premise. I generally don’t buy that many brand new books in a given year anyway. As someone who has read Klosterman’s entire catalogue, this is my second favorite book of his next to But What if We’re Wrong from 2016, or at least, that’s how I feel after having finished this last weekend.
I suppose this post is more or less a response, a post in which I use The Nineties as a jumping off point for some thoughts of my own. I think that’s what you do in book reviews.
This is only my second foray into writing about my feature phone use, so bear with me if it seems like I don’t know what I’m doing here. My prior instance of writing about it came back in early 2021 last year, in this video, which you can watch for more of me discussing feature phone use.
I purchased a Schok Classic flip feature phone back in January, I’ve been using it for about a month and a half, this post contains my experience with smartphones and feature phones, my thoughts about the Schok Classic in particular, critiques I have of it, and my overall current perspective about it.