Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Worse for Wear

Were you ever watching a championship ball game - Super Bowl, or the deciding game of the World Serious, for example - and notice that the very second the game ends, two things happen?
  • The camera will show the losing team on its bench or sideline with mournful looks as they watch the victors prancing victoriously
  • The winners will break out hats and shirts designating them as Champions
So you have to figure, both teams had their "We are the Champions" t-shirts and hats all made up and ready to wear.  What happens to the apparel made up for the guys who, as it turns out not, don't need it?

Major League baseball destroys their unneeded, unearned, un-champion duds, but the National Football League donates theirs to people far, far away.  Always tight about every last detail, the NFL does not even allow the shirts and hats of the losing team to see the light of day in this country, shipping them, still boxed, to World Vision, a charitable organization in Sewickly, PA, which distributes clothing to developing nations. 

This means that from the Super Bowl played this past January, there were dozens of "Pittsburgh Steelers World Champions" hats and shirts made up for absolutely no reason, but should your travels take you to Sierra Leone, Romania, or Uganda, you will see people who have not the slightest idea of the identity of Troy Polamalu wearing shirts that falsely proclaim his team to have won it all last year. 

What's more, you might see people somewhere sporting clothing that salutes Hines Ward for winning "Dancing With The Stars," but not around here, you won't.

Look closely!
In other worldwide sports apparel news, I love to read the great "UniWatch" blog.  Billed as "the obsessive study of athletics aesthetics," this daily weblog examines sports uniforms in minute detail.  Down to the very last stitch!  They recently showed that the 1972 Texas Rangers, recently transplanted from Washington, used old Senators uniforms in spring training by having some unlucky seamstress (seamster?) remove all the old "Senators" names on the front of the jerseys and then appliqueing the new "Rangers" logos.  This reminds me of a guy who was dating a girl named Mary and had her name tattooed on his bicep, only to break up with her over a dispute involving rent and some other woman's foundation garments that Mary found in the back seat of his Rambler.  So he took up with a girl named Mary Ann so he could save his tattoo by just adding three letters.

UniWatch had this picture on display the other day.
It shows that cable TV, and worldwide distribution of media and apparel, have now made us, indeed, one world.  In Libya, Moammar Gadhafi's 42-year run as Champion Of All Things Evil In The World came to a televised end the other day as the uprising of his own people against him finally had its denouement. The guy on the left in the photo is proudly displaying old Moammar's golden pistol, while Mohammed al-Bibi, on the right, played out his part in changing the world while wearing a (fake) New York Yankees hat!

There was a time when people in other countries hollered "Go home Yankee Imperialist Dogs!" whenever one of our diplomats or Nixons set a well-shod foot upon their soil.  It would be hard to yell that while wearing a Yankee hat.

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