Did you know famed Irish tenor Ronan Tynan was a double amputee? Me neither. But while one CSTB reader objected to Scott Raab of Esquire’s characterization of Roger Clemens (“With Rocket pouting, his feet up in the trainer™s table™s stirrups, as the team gynecologist pries apart his Hall of Fame labia”), The Weblog That Derek Built takes particular umbrage at Raab’s diss of Tynan (link culled from Repoz and Baseball Think Factory).
Since Tynan’s a physician as well as a world-renowned singer, I’m sure he has a better idea what “microcephalic” means than Scott Raab does. I’m also sure that despite those accomplishments, and the fact that Dr. Tynan was a paralympian (as a double amputee) whose world records from the 1980s still stand, Scott Raab is really well-placed to denigrate him, since Raab wrote “that Alex Rodriguez article”–six freakin’ years ago–and is still bragging about it.
I get that fans of every other team in baseball feel this air of superiority over us Yankee fans. After all, they’re all people of high character, built by rooting for teams who sometimes–heck, often–don’t have any chance of making the playoffs. Meanwhile, we fans of the Bronx Bombers are all entitled, rude, profane front-runners–universally guilty of poor sportsmanship–who consider World Series rings to be our birthright.
I mean, we must be lousy people. We support a “faux patriotic ritual”–which obviously can’t be sincere, since we’re all cold blooded bastards with no conscience–that is slyly calculated to make “the opposing pitcher wait an extra five or so minutes,” for the nefarious purpose of … what, exactly? I mean, it’s not like baseball innings have fixed time limits, or like the Yanks scored a ton of runs in the 7th inning this year, preying on “cold” pitchers. So what’s the unsportsmanlike advantage the Yankees are taking, exactly?
It’s funny how some of these “superior” sports fans–nope, no sense of entitlement or unsporting attitudes there!–show their superiority over us through displays of mean, vicious name-calling and cursing. Oh, and insulting a guy who’s suffered more adversity in his life than a 59-year World Series championship drought, yet nonetheless has managed greater accomplishments than simply “inspired a hissy fit between two pro athletes (six years ago).”
Much of the above is right on the money. After all, Yankee fans have no monopoly on a sense of entitlement (nor turning a blind to faux patriotic rituals). However, as long as Dr. Tynan is public performer, the quality of his work (if not the circumstances surrounding said faux patriotic ritual) is apt to get picked apart. If Tynan should (heaven forbid) lose his arms as well as his legs, that wouldn’t make his rendition of “God Bless America” any more or less pleasing to the ears.
There’s something rather confusing if not totally hysterical about suggesting Raab lacks the proper resume to critique Tynan. Should only double amputees and/or those with medical degrees be permitted to write for Esquire, Vanity Fair or Details? Conversely, should my colleagues in the recording industry commission more recordings by the legless — if everyone else is fair game for criticism, certainly the disabled will have a huge competitive advantage if we’re to follow TWTDB’s logic.