"Leinart speaks about party photos"
Saw the headline and had to read the story, which was published today in the Arizona Republic.
OK ... Lemme see ... Matt Leinart, a 24-year-old, good-looking quarterback for a professional football team, was ... OK ... lemme see now ... hang on ... photographed partying with young girls and ... hold up ... just a minute here ... wait, what? ... really? ... he also was pictured holding a ... wait for it ... this is shocking, horrifying stuff .... a beer bong?!?! Oh, the horror! The horror!
Don't believe me? Go here.
It's enough to make one shudder for the future of the republic (no pun intended).
Not because of what Leinart did, of course. Nope. No way. Bear with me, 'cause it's just a hunch, but I'm willing to bet my ability to read that Leinart is not the first multi-million-dollar athlete who likes to party with chicks and get wasted. That he has to answer for this and have his judgment questioned by "older," "wiser" types who no doubt have never had any fun in their lives is mind-numbingly stupid. You'd think, based on the breathless coverage, and on this browbeating delivered by Arizona Republic columnist Dan Bickley, that Leinart had killed someone -- or worse. All because he was doing something every red-blooded American male would otherwise want to do if he were in Leinart's board shorts. Look, I realize we're a long way from Joe Willie Namath, whose Mark-Kriegel-authored biography fantastically contains an entire chapter called "Booze and Broads," and whose exploits in and around New York City in the 1960s will always represent the gold standard of true bachelor cool. "He walked off with Jagger's girls," Kriegel writes. "He spilled drinks on Sinatra." I also realize athletes' actions are under greater scrutiny than ever before, that they constantly run the risk of getting in greater trouble than the rest of us because of their fame and fortune. But still: Why does the flip-side have to be that they're not entitled to any fun at all? Why does the revelation that they are having fun somehow imply that they're shirking their duties, as if they should all be studying their playbooks on Saturday nights and making sure to be at the gym by sunrise the following morning? Why does Matt Leinart have to answer for anything in this instance -- other than a handful of in-depth questions about why I wasn't invited?