Friday, February 27, 2009

STFU Awards: Cowboys Edition

Sometimes when rich guys forget just how rich they are and how non-rich the rest of the world is, they say very callous things.

First part of this STFU Award goes to Roger Staubach. I am pretty sure that Staubach is a good guy. I don’t know that he and I would have much to talk about if we ever sat down over a cup of coffee. Maybe other than liking the Cowboys. But still, I respect him as a football player and admire his work ethic. So when I hear him crack a joke about being “pained” to write the check for his seat license at the new Cowboys stadium (Title TK Field), I think about the amused chuckles that probably went up in the room after he said it. Lots of rich people laughing about how much the price of premium season tickets for the richest franchise in the NFL sure have gone up. I wonder I could get the same chuckles if, say, I went up next and did a couple of bits about how the price of gas, food and medical treatment for someone living paycheck to paycheck sure has gone up! My guess: half awkward chuckles, half exasperated shifting in seats. First thing, I am pretty sure the last thing Jerry wants highlighted (again) is that YOU CANNOT AFFORD TO SEE A GAME AT THE NEW STADIUM. Maybe I am wrong. Maybe he wanted to chase away the riff raff. Maybe the whole point of this new stadium is “If you have to ask how much a game is, you can’t afford it.” More about Jerry later though.

But Roger, you seem like a pretty down-home, salt-of-the-earth sort of guy. At the very least, you seem smart enough to know how to say things diplomatically. I know you know about the economy and how bad a turn it has taken even if you are rich. I know this because every day when I drive up or down McKinney Ave. to or from work, I see storefront upon storefront which one year ago sported Staubach signs in the window as construction was coming to a close. Then I saw every single retail unit filled within a month or two. And now it’s like déjà vu. I see those same storefronts all with Staubach signs in the windows again as each high-end, upscale retail store sags and eventually collapses. I can’t imagine you being anything but a hands on guy when it comes to your real estate business. So you probably have noticed how many of your retail and corporate properties have defaulted on loans and closed up shop. So you have got to know that if those people are hurting, it’s safe to assume that lots of other people are financially hurting as well.

Maybe it was being in the welcoming, safe and warm confines of the fellow rich that lead to this insensitive exchange. But I also happen to know that you were born in 1942 and the microphone is commonly acknowledged to have been invented in 1878. A better indication that there is press or recording devices around is the mere presence of Jerry Jones. A good rule of thumb is that, even if they are not immediately visible or detectible, if Jerry Jones is in a room then that means that there are cameras rolling or microphones recording and the press is there.

Now we must move on the co-recipient of the STFU Award today. Jerry Jones, I am rarely surprised by you but this one did surprise me. Mostly because you just handed out your own round of STFU Awards to your entire coaching staff. Also, two things make me think that you would be the last person to stomp on the outreached hands of the fiscally unenlightened Cowboys fan. First off, you are from Arkansas. You can’t blame your insensitivity on the fact that you grew up in Central Park West and never went below Midtown. Growing up in Arkansas, you had to have seen poor people. A second fact that makes me not believe you would let this exchange happen is that you are a media whore. You can’t get enough camera time for yourself. You can’t get enough of your own voice.

So surely you are intelligent enough to realize that when the President of the United States has just gone on national TV during prime time only a few nights before to address an economic crisis that has cost millions of people to lose their jobs, their homes, their cars, the health insurance and their sanity, you would never want to let the press hear you and your rich cronies joking about how much seats at the new stadium are, right? Because everyone was talking about it before the economy took a bad turn. So you would want to do damage control on that, right? You would want to assure Cowboys fans who are struggling to make ends meet that they will be able to afford a ticket to see their team at the new stadium. You would use this as a chance to announce new ticket pricing for the pre-season that will make sure every Cowboys fan has a chance to see a game in the new stadium. Come on, it’s not that hard to put on a good show that you care about making Cowboys game affordable for the next year or two until the economy turns around. Then jack the prices up and tell everyone that you’re raising prices to make sure the new stadium has 70% less rat sightings and health and safety code violations than Texas Stadium had. People might even pay for that.

I sometimes think that Jerry Jones would get a kick out of this scene from Blackadder the Third:

Sir Talbot Buxomly: Well, Your Highness. I dined hugely off of servants before I come into town.
Prince George: Um, you eat your servants?
Sir Talbot Buxomly: No, sir -- I eat *off* them. Why should I spend good money on tables when I have men standing idle?

That being said, I would love to go to a Cowboys game since I have never been able to afford tickets so let me be the first in the Volunteer Human Table line.


Anonymous said...

Jerry's whole marketing plan beginning with--oh, yeah, a stadium resembling a starship carved from a single mountain jewel by a genie--seems purposely tilted in the opposite direction. People who are ordinary slobs in daily life can now take pride in having separated themselves from their bottom-dwelling peers by having done what it took to buy a ticket. Those without such pride and gumption will instead, like chumps, buy some doctor's spiel about Grandma having five more good years...but in the end, really, with what quality of life? And, besides, there's a reason we have two of almost every important organ, for those types of life-shaping occasions Jerry offers. You only have one lifetime to spend, don't let it slip away like smoke in a confusing tangle of priorities, IJS.


Karl said...

I dont 'know from football', but did i ever mention i was an extra (paid, of course) in a commercial for Tucker (Tanya) Carlson's show a few years back? I dont think it was on the air too long but definitely not because of me! I know almost nothing about him but he seems like the type that would drink at 'The Loon', and i dont mean that in a cool way..
BTW, did anyone ever tell you you look EXACTLY like the wonderful and talented Kirsty MacColl? Its true. Thankfully you dont look like Lemmy! Just look!