I’m thinking that it’s been ages since I picked a good nit, so here we go. I, like many of you, watch a lot of sport on TV, and if there is one thing that I cannot stand, it’s when an announcer assumes that his or her audience is unable to identify the sport that he or she is watching.
Here’s an example. I’m watching Green Bay and Dallas try to severely injure each other on a big strip of grass, which is marked off in five-yard increments, and there is a set of goal posts at either end. The players are wearing body armor and helmets, and most of the crowd are wearing big lumps of cheese on their heads. The announcer says: “Brett Favre (and if that’s pronounced, “Farve,” then I’ve just fatred) is in complete control of this football game, and is throwing the football with deadly accuracy.”
Now if I’m not mistaken, this is a GAME that is played with a BALL, and if there is anyone watching who has not yet noticed that it is a game called “FOOTBALL,” then, to ensure the safety of us all, this person needs to be institutionalized as quickly as possible.
I of course use football as an example, but the problem is even more widespread in golf. The terms “golf ball, golf swing, golf shot, golf club” are all equally acceptable when used without being preceded by the word “golf,” unless of course we start playing the game on a football field, or a hockey rink, and I don’t see that happening any time soon. In fact, now that I come to think of it, hockey is thankfully one of the sports in which the announcers give the viewers the benefit of the doubt.
If Barry Melrose (who I think is the best analyst in any sport) ever says, “He shot that hockey puck so hard at Belfour,” I shall feel as if someone has taken a swing at my balls. And I’m assuming you know which ones I’m talking about.