============================================= From: email@example.com (Ariel Mazzarelli) Subject: Timeouts? Date: June 12, 1995 Today I was channelsurfing and ran across the fourth quarter of the NBA finals. I started to watch it. During commercials, I would switch to another channel, then come back. When there were about 2 minutes [sic] to go and Houston was up by 3 points, one of the teams called a timeout and I went to channel 67 and there was an absolutely fabulous interview of Jennifer Saunders. About 15 minutes later [sic], I remembered that I cared about whether Houston beat Orlando, and I went back to NBC. There were 5.4 seconds left on the game, Orlando was down by 5. They inbound and sink an impossible 35 foot 3-pointer. They foul immediately on the inbound, call timeout. I go back to 67 and they are reairing some old hbo show so I go back to NBC but they still have some car commercial on so I go to CNN but there is a commercial there so I wonder whether I should just get the result via email when I go back to NBC and they already had the free throws and Houston is up by 3 and Orlando has the ball and there are 2.4 seconds left. Timeout so I go take a leak. I come back and Orlando inbounds the ball and they shoot an airball and go down 3-0. I guess that is all I will watch of the NBA finals on NBC this year. Too bad, I like the way that Olajouwon and Drexler play. But the most important part of an NBA game are its final 2 minutes, and when that becomes 20 minutes [sic] with 18 minutes of commercials, well... let's put it this way: you might do it for love, but not for a basketball game on TV. Not even the NBA finals on NBC. Fortunately, there was the usual promising game from the USA team, against the listless Nigerians. The game was much too close at 3-2, and those US fans that insist that there is a better goalkeeper in the wings should be grateful that Mr. Olajouwon switched sports at 18 years of age. I am grateful that I could watch this on Univision instead of ESPN. This choice is just as clear if you speak English and not speak Spanish. It seems senseless, but hear me out: which of the two lets you know the name of the player with the ball? On ESPN, you are forced to listen to the prattle if you want the crowd noise and 'ambiance'; on Univision, if you don't like their comments, it doesn't matter because they are in Spanish and you don't understand Spanish. You do understand GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL and of course this is the best part of the telecast. And then the main course, New Zealand rugby. While I was watching their treatment of the Scot problem, a gentleman that has seen many futbol games in Mexico walked by and said 'los europeos juegan al futbol mas fuerte, no?' I tell ya, it was good enough to be a post of the week. For dessert, the hapless attempt by the English to preserve some honour in their expected defeat to Brasil. In the first half they managed to dominate with the complicity of a referee that had not been informed of the new rule that allows a warning to be issued with a yellow card. You might recall that Brasil had already been kicked out of a world cup in England, and it seemed that the same rules were still in effect. In the second half, things were completely different of course, as the English got tired and played like fools. Only when Gascoigne entered the field did they resemble an opponent. One might also ask which goalie seemed more brasilero, Zetti or Flowers? Nonetheless, the last two goles by Brasil were perfect. Completely tangentially, could Nigeria beat the US in basketball? Hmmm. You know, when it comes to basketball, I can honestly say that Olajouwon is better than Pele. ============================================= From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Juan Gonzalez) Subject: Re: Timeouts? Date: June 12, 1995 You know the same thing happened to me only I started watching the basketball game in the last 5 min. Who cares about the rest anyway. I wanted to see those great match ups, and see Olajouwon play but the commercials are much more than I can take. I surfed to MSG network and watched some of the replay of the Yankees game. When I went back to NBC after I don't know how long, there were 2 min left. Those must have been the longest 2 minutes in history. I watched some discovery Channel and then forgot about the game. When I got back there were less than 3 seconds left. I went back to the Discovery Channel and I forgot about the game. A lot of time went by but when I checked there was a car commercial. Well to make a long story short, I finally found out during a commercial at Discovery Channel that Houston had won. Marv Albert was giving the info with his faked voice of excitment and there was that horrible loud "NBC" music in the backround. Marv was doing a promo for game 4 and trying to make it sound exciting and the music kept getting stronger. It was dark in my living room and I desperatly searched for the remote that I had dropped. I got it and pushed all the buttons. I was thinking, somebody shoot me please. Well I got the set turned off and that was it. I thought a bit after that. NBC and the advertisers probably lose a lot of money if Houston sweeps the series. I felt a certain joy inside becuase of this. I'm sure no normal human being could put up with the torture of watching that defacing of a wonderful sport. My question is DO THE ADVERTISERS REALIZE THAT NO ONE IS WATCHING DURING THE BREAKS. Or are there people actually sitting there watching. I can only imagine some mental patient being able to watch all that BS. Please no time outs in soccer or I will have to go to the park and watch kids play. ========================================== From: Tim Herrett
Subject: Re: Timeouts? Date: June 12, 1995 I absolutely agree with the last two posts. I too was watching the NBA play-offs. Being a Brit and relatively new to this sport I naively assumed that if there is five minutes of a game to go that this is what it means. Oh no. This translates to about an hour. The last time out in game one was about 0.3 seconds from the end! And still they went back on court. It is not only frustrating but the whole momentum of the game is lost.Imagine watching a footie game with a minute to go and your team 1-0 down but pressing for an equaliser. You are on the edge of your seat. THEN, a time-out is called and a car or pile-ointment advert comes on instead. Two words spring to mind - Coitus and Interruptus. And you all know what thats like. Just say no to Time-Outs. --------------------------------------------- From: email@example.com (Juan Gonzalez) Subject: Re: Timeouts? Date: June 12, 1995 I think those words are exactly what it's like. Maybe some people in the US like that (no offense intended as I'm sure soccer lovers don't). If you will notice in many American movies the phone always rings when they are making love. What is worse is that the guy answers it. In other movies they just knock over the phone and keep going. I think that is what seperates football-soccer from the rest of the sports. The passion builds up because it is non-stop and you always get to have your "orgasm" sometimes it's not the greatest but you know when the end will come. I think real guys in the U.S. are just tired of being jerked around by sports with no passion. Baseball is the only true great american sport since it has natural pauses and doesn't have a clock, no need for time outs. It's kind of like a less intense long "orgasm", but there is nothing like soccer, it never lets you go until it's over and that's what makes it special. I don't like to promote violence but even if the FIFA wants time outs there is no reason why they should be called. Whoever asks for a time out should be rushed by the fans and promptly beaten up. I think this will teach them not to take our "orgasm" away. -------------------------------------------- From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Simon Moore) Subject: Re: Timeouts? Date: June 13, 1995 What a wonderful analogy. Timeouts are like answering the phone when having sex. Love it. Still, if they let managers stand at the side & shout "encouragement" to their poor players (a la Jack Charlton) then they'd be no need, would there? I have an answering machine by the way :-) ============================================== From: email@example.com (Bruce D. Scott) Subject: Re: Timeouts? Date: June 16, 1995 I agree absolutely all the way with Ariel and Juan. If there are any Americans left who don't realise how bad this commercial interruption nonsense really is, I recommend a multi-year stay in Europe. When it _really_ hit me was during the '88 Olympics, when I saw the first half from Los Alamos (I'd been away almost a year then) and the second half from here. Although the times of day were far worse here, I really learned to appreciate the networks (1) telling me _when_ certain events were to occur, and (2) not interrupting them. The TV tax is worth it if it gets you hours of uninterrupted coverage. In the US you got "Carl Lewis is about to run against Ben Johnson, don't go away", before the commercials which appeared at least a dozen times in the hour before the 100-meter final. That is simply unacceptable. Here, we got to sense the emotional build-up in the stands all the way up to the event. Here, during a football match you get no nonsense of any sort, including the silly shrink-the-screen-and plug-the-product variety, and then during half time you get the news. On private channels you get some ads during half time (but the viewers expect and get at least 50 percent of that in game commentary), like on the Spanish network in North America, but that is the furthest these no-minds should be allowed to go. If they don't want to carry the games properly, fine. We can read about it in the papers or watch on a reasonable network -- like the former SIN. ================================================== Subject: Timeouts (again) (Was: Rules and the USA) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Simon Moore) Date: July 4, 1995 I've just thought of another reason why timeouts are such a bad idea. Can you imagine the effect timeouts would have on your toes* whilst sitting in sub-zero conditions on a dark January evening, praying that the match will be over soon when some stupid berk prolongs the torture by calling timeouts every few minutes? And what about the poor players trying to keep warm? Simon *substitute your bodily part most affected by the cold.