Sports Writers and Their Audience: A Short Rant

Todd Washburn@TheToddWashburnContributor IDecember 22, 2010

BROOKLYN, MI - AUGUST 13:  Chad Knaus, crew cheif of the the #48 Lowe's Chevrolet driven by Jimmie Johnson (not pictured) works on a laptop in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series CARFAX 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 13, 2010 in Brooklyn, Michigan.  (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Jason Smith/Getty Images

Happy Holidays to everyone, and Merry Whatever you decide to celebrate under any deity or none at all.  It's that time of the season again where we have to spend time with family, buy people things, and return what they bought us because we really have no room in life for a bunny outfit (a Christmas Story Reference).

I just want to write a short rant for giggles.

The rant is about writing and the audience.  It seems that no matter what you write, report, or whatever public product you produce someone is going to disagree with it.   You cant please everyone, right?

That is fine with me, it doesn't bother me at all.  In fact, I Iove to argue so if someone decides to engage me in intelligent debate, I am all for it.  However, you get your occasional despotic fan who wants to make his or her name known on a message board and spout off at the mouth. 

I'm not a guy that sits well with.  Writers can often spend many hours on the same article revising and researching their facts so you have something worthwhile to read in between games.  Sometimes, and I have been guilty of this myself, writers can write something so puzzling and bizarre you are left thinking, "Is this dude for real?"

Well, it happens.  You have to understand that sometimes its opinion, and most writers do a great deal of number crunching research to back up their topic.  It's Composition 1100, and it's called an argument. 

If you're going to debate a writer or dispute their findings, don't call them a moron or say you've totally debunked their myths with your war of rhetoric.  Do us a favor: just bring an argument to the table, and you will be fine. 

I have had the pleasure of debating beat writer Matthew Leach a few times.  He's a great guy. We went back and forth sometimes (he usually schools me) but I learned from it, and he enjoyed the debate as well. 

GOOD: "I understand why you wrote X, Y, Z....but don't you think A, B and C could be a factor?"

BAD: "You're a moron because so-and-so is the greatest, and that didn't happen because I was there man."

I know people are more intelligent than their board posting IQ.  I am going to invent that system one day, you watch (Board Posting IQ, or BPI for short). If anyone has any ideas on how to calculate that I am all ears; I am really a dunce at math formulas. 

Another thing, writer's aren't always fans of what they're writing about.  I am from St. Louis, Mo.  I am a fan of those sports.  However, every time I write an article I suddenly become a fan of the team or player we write about.  Does that even make sense to write about teams we hate?

Anyway, for the most part, you will never please the masses. I understand that.  I do enjoy a lot of the dialogue I share with other sports fans, and it is great to be a part of a society where we can talk about it freely. 

I apologize if you had to read this. It is just a small rant. If it doesn't apply to you, keep on truckin'.  If the shoe fits, we shall see who decides to comment.

Happy Holidays everyone, and be safe.