I've got a story to tell you today. It's not a new story. It begins in Vevey, Switzerland, and will have you saying "Oy vey" by the time the moon comes up in Rome. The Colosseum we'll be visiting isn't in Los Angeles, and the disease that inspired this tale isn't the metaphoric rot of boosterism run amok.
The story opens at the Hôtel des Trois Couronnes. That's French for "three crowns." Royalty frequents the Trois Couronnes, but there will be no coronets for the subject of this sad saga.
"You are old enough to be more reasonable," they told her. "You are old enough, dear Miss Miller, to be talked about."
It's come to my attention that college basketball fans prefer not to read anything negative about their favorite teams. And now that Eli Manning has ushered in the postpartisan age that President Obama could only dream of, I feel inspired to stay positive. So, for the convenience of Kansas and Missouri fans, I've divided this post into two distinct sections. Jayhawks fans should skip right to the second section, where I blame Saturday night's 74-71 loss squarely on the referees. Tigers fans should read the first section, where I credit Marcus Denmon's heroics for the epic win, and forgo section two in favor of eating an orange or being affectionate with a loved one.
Sports fans can be a savage lot. When it comes to cruelty, is there any group more relentlessly inventive? Chanting in unison, they pick at the heart of the enemy. But in my book, there's one chant more brutal than any other. It's worse than insulting someone's family, worse than hurling the most unspeakable epithet, and worse than mocking a personal handicap. This one cuts the deepest.