Friday, March 17, 2006

Bastard of the Day

Today's award goes to John Cougar Mellencamp. If I see that old fart with his band on a basketball court singing "Rockin' in the N-C-Double-A" one more time, I'll scream. Of course, this Hoosier has been on the downward slide for a long, long time. Even his best albums like Scarecrow contained their share of filler and pop garbage. Heck, "R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A." sounds inspired compared to trash like "Lonely Ol' Night." At least it was better than American Fool. I hate "Jack & Diane" with every fiber of my being -- except the fibers I reserve for hating "Hurts So Good."

One of the first times I can recall my future wife making fun of me was when we heard Mellencamp on the radio (circa 1997), and I said, "It's John Mellencamp, trying to stay relevant." She thought I was goofy to use a word like "relevant" to describe a performer (as if a woman who has memorized Slayer lyrics has any right to judge my rock criticism). But I was right, and even then he was losing the fight. Aside from dusting off the ol' guitar to play "Rain On The Scarecrow" at Farm Aid, this guy should have hung it up a decade ago.

But I have a special reason for directing my vitriol at Mellencamp now. He and his freaking NCAA basketball March Madness are on CBS, and some of my favorite shows aren't on this week because of it (I lucked out with the Olympics since I don't watch NBC). That makes CBS and the NCAA honorary bastards. I have always hated basketball, probably because it requires two things I don't have: height and coordination. I didn't watch the Fighting Illini in the Final Four last year. Even when Michael Jordan, arguably the best player ever (if you would argue, you're not from Chicago), was working his magic for the Bulls, I hardly paid attention to anything more than the last five minutes of a few playoff games. It's okay if they want to show this stuff on Saturdays and Sundays -- I don't watch TV on weekends anyway -- but don't waste prime time on some lousy first round college playoff game like Goober Tech versus Bumwipe State.

And to think, I have to put up with another two weeks of this.

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