Thursday, September 30, 2010

Ryan Howard vs. The Dallas Cowboys: Grant vs. Grunts

Ryan Howard is a Grant. That's a male Grace for the uninitiated--Grant, as in Cary, or Hugh in certain roles. The Phillies' slugging first baseman showed his Grantly colors on Monday evening when his team clinched their 4th consecutive division title. He would not allow the champagne celebration to begin until teammates Roy Halliday and Mike Sweeney were present to pop the first corks. Halliday and Sweeney are both veteran players who joined the Phillies this year. Neither had reached the playoffs before despite illustrious careers. Ryan Howard's gesture, along with the team's cooperation demonstrates again that in addition to possessing prodigious baseball skill and really good looks, they are nice guys. Glad they are my home team!

Contrast that with the appalling demonstration of Gruntliness by the Dallas Cowboys in sticking a young player with a steak dinner tab that equals a down payment on a house. I know, I know, it's the NFL. This is not the first time I have remarked on their lack of civility. But they are role models. My beef, if you'll pardon the pun, with them is threefold:

1. Do kids need to see veteran players hazing rookies? Seems a dangerously short leap from there to bullying.
2. In the current economic climate, does anyone need to see the grossly conspicuous consumption involved in a $55,000 dinner tab?
3. When Dez Bryant invited the Offensive Line to dinner to apologize for his unwillingness to carry Roy Williams's equipment during training camp, Roy Williams took it upon himself to invite the Defensive Line as well. As he was not hosting, he had no business issuing invitations!

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