Thursday, August 14, 2008

Questions from girls

A new semi-regular feature here at GROF HQ will see me, Jesse, your friend and marginal Grofman, fielding a handpicked selection of the several hundred well-meaning and adorably naive questions we receive every month from our vast female readership.

Q. Dear Ghostrunners,
I just caught the movie Bull Durham on a free preview of Moviepix and was sooooo charmed by the character Crash Davis. His mixture of calculated aloofness, non-threateningly fit physique, and ruggedly downhome sense of metaphysics made me glad I faked a stomach ache and cancelled on my best friend's birthday night at the Dance Barrel. My question is sort of like why don't I ever feel this way watching the pro ballplayers' interviews on TV? I'm guessing it's because Crash's team was a country team and not a real team, and when an agent signs you to a baseball contract the money and everything makes it weird, right? I don't know, I just thought it was weird.

— Jenn, 25
Mississauga, Ont.

A. So wait... shit. You're saying that the more conventionally masculine Costner character is the one burrowing ever-deeeper into the lurid precincts of your secret mind? I'm a little tangled up here: my gf says Tim Robbins is the cooler of the two, that his hyper self-conscious countenance and gangly musculature is "adorable" in a way that reminds her of me. Is she blowing smoke here or what's going on? Tell you what, I'm going to come back to this one.

Q. Dear Ghostrunners,
I can't believe it! Listen to this: I went down to Toronto for a Jays game at the SkyDome [sic -ed.] last Thursday with some friends (it was my bff's bday!!!) and I saw that the coach looked like the same guy — black , distinguished-looking and with a mustache — as they had when I was in Grade 7. Now I'm more of a Leafs girl (Tucker 4 eva! lol @ haters w00t) and I can tell you that the coaches in hockey are ALWAYS getting fired. Like, you didn't win the cup, so ok bye love ya lol. Why is baseball so different?

— Becky
Carleton Place, Ont.

A. I'm pretty sure this was sent in by my sister, which is a little fucking kooked out, but nonetheless I'll answer it straight. Being as I am a Senators man, I recently became acquainted with what would prove to be the first of the calendar year's two textbook instances of mere head-coach atavism, which we musn't confuse with the more insidious and chillingly evocative concept of head-coach entrenchment. Other than that, ummm... what does it matter that he's black anyway? I feel like you wouldn't be pointing that out if it weren't some like stereotype-inflected determinant of imagined virility. I want to know what's with this inner obsession with contemplating dating a black man. It's ENDEMIC and, what's more, it's tacky, man. NOTE TO READERS: In future correspondence, please make an effort to stay on topic.

Q. Dear Ghostrunners,
Hi guys, I'm self-employed in the public-relations field, so I more or less set my own hours. A lot of the early part of my day is spent browsing various blogs and web forums pertaining to a variety of things relevant to my work (a lot of my clients could be classified, at least in broad terms, under the "lifestyle" umbrella), and it was in the course of this cherished daily routine that I happened upon your site. First of all, GREAT work! I totally dig the dynamic. The Reverend's and Lloyd's respective voices evince this kind of dialectical good-cop-bad-cop vibe that I'm sure must be a boon for your come-back traffic. (I'd love to have a look at your analytics, by the way.) But I think the site's real strength lies in its lack of pretense. It gets annoying when bloggers act like they're at the vanguard of some New Epoch of Journalism. Give me a break! I appreciate that you guys have a sense of humour about yourselves.

Anyway — shut UP, Lauren :) — here's why I wrote you: I wanted to know how you'd rate the team's stock of minor-league pitching prospects, and whether, in a hypothetical world where the remaining salary attached to a player's contract had no bearing on his trade value, you think it'd behoove the team to move one (or even both) of Wells or Rios to acquire some young arms?

— Lauren, 28
Vancouver, B.C.

A. Yeah, sweet. Here comes Self-Styled Powersuit Career Lady, after spending a half-day skimming blogs, to prove to us what an authority she is. Let me tell you something, Lauren: a big multi-year contract is not something you can just ... just WILL away in accordance with some rose-coloured, pie-in-the-sky scenario you've come up with. "What if the everything were exactly the way I wanted it?" How about what if you had to actually live in the REAL WORLD? A place where you live with the consequences of your actions, where your ass is liable for the cheques written by your mouth, and where you don't just walk away from something you've invested in — something you've BUILT with what might as well be your own two hands, Lauren — for the sake of something else that's younger and more impressionable and ... and...I don't know, something that represents the unknown and carries with it an aura of "mystery," or whatever you want to call whatever dear-diary abstraction it is you're fetishizing this week.

The way I see it, you have two choices: you can continue to play it all Madame Bovary and wonder about what your team might be missing out on, or you can grow up and recognize that Vernon Wells is TRYING and Alex Rios is TRYING. In what universe, other than one conjured within the mind of a spoiled brat who's been handed everything she's ever had, do you have the right to demand anything more?

Talking about "lack of pretense"and "sense of humour about yourselves." Exactly what is that supposed to mean? People who live in glass houses, in which they lollygag around in their Lululemon and "work in public relations" during hours (I'm saying it's more like fractions thereof) of their own capricious choosing, shouldn't throw stones at the heads of dudes who have things called jobs. We do the best we can with the time available to us! You want slick design? You want high-concept Ivy Leaguish writing? Well, why don't go off and find yourself a slick, rigorously edited blog...and leave us alone to do what we do the only way we know how. I'm sure there are tons of prestige blogs maintained by rich college guys with more spare time (and more of mommy and daddy's money) than they could fill in three charmed lifetimes. I'm sure you'll have lots to talk about with them. I feel sorry for you.

Well, that's all for this week, everyone. I want to thank all the girls who wrote in. Keep those queries coming! We don't have room to run every letter, but we'll try and run this feature as often as possible and cram in as many of those questions as we can! You're all a big part of the success of this site and we love you for it. Until next time....


  1. The Dance Barrel - You're loling.

  2. "Lollygag around in their Lululemon".


    This post may be your finest hour, Jesse.


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