Remember when football was a man’s sport? I do. I remember when my grandfather sat on the couch with a beer in one hand and a beer in the other, eating a tuna sandwich slapped together in haste during a commercial break. He had money on the Giants (he always did) and sat swearing a blue streak he must have learned in the Navy. Would Jimmy “The Midget” Vitale—retired garment inspector, WWII veteran, loudmouth with a heart of gold—have been offended by the faux moon (defined, by this blog, as a moon performed while fully clothed) delivered by Randy Moss in the game against Green Bay Sunday night? Maybe. Because there was a time when that kind of behavior was reserved for the locker room and union hall, in the company of men.
In 2005, however, look no further than the parking lot at Lambeau Field for the mooning Moss mocked. According to Colts coach Tony Dungy, “The fans in Green Bay have a tradition in the parking lot after the game where they moon the visiting team’s bus.” Can the NFL point to its family-minded viewers while fans are bearing their buns in below-freezing temps? Just watch them. Folks who, in 2003, let their 8-year-olds sit through beer commercials where fighting bimbos tumbled into fountains this year balked when Nicolette Sheridan dropped her towel in front of Philadelphia receiver Terrell Owens.
While considering whether Moss’s gesture was a finable offense—the NFL will make a ruling later this week—I’d ask the league to consider this: The implication of nudity in Moss’s gesture wasn’t what was offensive—it was his lack of sportsmanship. He didn’t get nasty like Miss Jackson. He got obnoxious. Families should be less concerned about how junior’s interest might be piqued by a nipple ring and more worried about athletes who teach him that running fast and throwing hard is a license to be disrespectful. But why would they worry about that when Dad’s in the parking lot showing off his rear bumper?
—Posted by Deanna Zammit
Credit: Jonathan Daniel/Staff