June 4, 2008

33 Redux

Deep in the annals of Blowtorch lore are nods to Chuck Klosterman as my main inspiration for entering the writing world. Of course, it's easy to see his influence in everything that I write not involving Tony Parker soliciting people to violate his wife. ANYHOW, this is a long-winded way of saying that I'm a huge Chuck Klosterman fan.

In Sex, Drugs, & Cocoa Puffs, Klosterman examines the diametrically opposed nature of the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers of the 1980s. Once the Finals match-up was set, I returned to the book to see what additional knowledge I could gather.

"Wouldn't it be awesome," I thought, "if Chuck Klosterman addressed these two teams again?"

The answer, obviously, is yes. It would be awesome if Chuck Klosterman addressed these two teams again.

And that's exactly what you see below.

I make up a lot of stuff around here, but this is legit. I put together the questions (stealing two from the original essay) and Chuck answered them. Please enjoy.


QUESTION #1 - "What kind of bear is best?"
Celtic People traditionally support grizzly bears. KG and Pierce are both grizzy-like, although Ray Allen seems more like a superstitious panda. Laker People prefer the Galician brown bear, which is native to northwest Spain and can be acquired in trade for two dead rabbits and a case of Zima.

QUESTION #2 - "Which candidate deserves my vote?"

This is a tricky question: When I break humans into the categories of Celtic People and Laker People, I am (generally) only using the teams from the 1980s that were diametrically and metaphorically opposed. It's harder to make this distinction with the modern squads; they seem less symbolic and more similar. I feel like Kendrick Perkins would probably vote for McCain and Luke Walton would support Hillary. Kobe would vote for whoever was ahead in the polls. I bet Phil Jackson is soft on crime and Doc Rivers hates NAFTA. This is all probably a moot point, however. I have to assume Barack Obama does not have to worry very much about dominating the NBA vote. If 80 percent of southern Ohio was composed of professional basketball players, we would be out of Iraq by 2010.

QUESTION #3 - "Who would win in a fight, a ninja or a pirate?"

Kobe likes to call himself the Black Mamba, which is a somewhat reactionary ninja name. I suppose Rondo is something of a pirate moniker, but it's probably not that simple. Besides, the last true ninja in this rivalry was Michael Cooper.

QUESTION #4 - "Is Adam Sandler funny?"

QUESTION #5 - "Where should I get my news?"
Celtic People get their news from the New York Times web page, the print edition of the Cincinnati IEnquirer, Grit magazine, anecdotal conversations with drug dealers, The Bill Simmons podcast, John Stossel, the subtext of Cormac McCarthy novels, and their own dreams. Laker People get their news from episodes of 24, The Huffington Post, billboards, the users guide for GTA4, unicorn-themed Tarot cards, Diablo Cody's tumblr account, Chinese menus, and Andrew W.K.

QUESTION #6 - "What late night talk show host should I watch?"
I don't think I've watched any of these shows in something like nine years. It's difficult to watch TV at night. It's inconvenient.

QUESTION #7 - "What socially irresponsible rap music should I support?"
The problem with this question is that rap isn't as socially irresponsible as it used to be. Garnett makes everything look difficult and emotionally painful, so maybe Celtic People need to buy more DMX records. The easy answer for Laker People (because of Kobe) is obviously R. Kelly, the only problem being that he is not a rapper. There really isn't a Nas figure on either on these rosters, although maybe Lamar Odom comes close. As for Eminem ... I heard this rumor that he has hidden himself away in some remote location, grew a beard, got depressed, filled an entire refrigerator with Mountain Dew and Sunny D, and now just sits around taking painkillers and thinking about the end of the world.

Oh, wait ... that's what I'm doing right now.

Never mind. L.A. in five games.


Ben Q. Rock said...

"Ray Allen seems more like a superstitious panda."


TheHype said...

What? I thought *everyone* read Diablo Cody's tumblr. I only read it to see how she'll fit that word into her next movie...

CK does not disappoint.

Gourmet Spud said...

If Adam Sandler isn't funny, then that Zohan billboard is lying to me.

Nicely done, GH.

Green said...

Shouldn't the Laker fans support grizzly bears? Grizzly bears apparently will get on their knees to help the fine fellows in LA (now there's an image)

pjbeardsley said...

"As for Eminem ... I heard this rumor that he has hidden himself away in some remote location, grew a beard, got depressed, filled an entire refrigerator with Mountain Dew and Sunny D, and now just sits around taking painkillers and thinking about the end of the world."

That could also easily describe Brian Scalabrine.

Anonymous said...

where can i find that shirt, Chuck?

Anonymous said...

Awesome Office shoutout.

GA Hill said...

His shirt is from Undrcrwn, a clothing company out of (I believe) LA. I have a Bulls one. But they have been sold out of both (as well as a Lakers, UNLV, and Jordan-era UNC shirts) for a long time now unfortunately.

Great stuff with this, though. How'd you get a hold of him to do it?

Todd S. said...

Chuck is great -- his stuff on Saved by the Bell is amazing.

And he's right. Maybe we should be moving all NBA franchises just south of Columbus. Its what's best for the nation.

Allen said...

Is it a coincidence that both Mike Myers and Adam Sandler are releasing ethnically offensive movies at the same time?

Rob Mahoney said...

This is damn awesome. The Lakers/Celtics chapter was my favorite in Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs, and Chuck is an absolute baller.

Props to you for a "good get" as they say in the biz.

Sports Tsar said...

the laker version of the shirt just reads Kobe&Kobe&Kobe&Kobe&Kobe