Tuesday, December 18, 2007


When you're alone and life is making you lonely, you can always count on the kindness of strangers who forward the latest on the ex-beer baron's long slide down.

Et tu, Mike (Seize and Desist) Cecere?
"Mr. Cecere's businesses are owed more than $3.5-million for unpaid work including TV and print ads promoting the beverages.

" 'It's very important that we get paid. Are you kidding me? A small company like ours? Give me a break,' Mr. Cecere said in an interview. -- reportonbusiness.com
My sweet lord, I guess those clowns really did need my $2 million! (Winks.) Don't worry, Mr. Seize and Desist, you are totally convincing as the honest broker.

OK, enough of that. My Minnesota Vikings are all but in the playoffs. They did their best for three quarters to make this our Arizona, a reprise of They Are Who We Thought They Were game.

However, the Bears and Kyle Orton ("Only on a couple of occasions did he look like he had played the position before," noted the Chicago Tribune) happened. They were not to denied a chance to demonstrate how to lose a game despite being plus-3 in the turnover battle. (If you're wondering what Lance Briggs was thinking when he took a terrible roughing-the-passer penalty that helped set up a Vikes field goal, well, you try playing when your ex is the local fishwrap saying you have "an open-pants policy toward paternity.")

So that helped. The support from commenters and readers alike over the past 24 hours has been touching. At the risk of dragging out like one of Brett Favre off-season retirement dramas, let's just say that it's 98% that Out of Left Field will continue.

A lot has to happen, and it will take some time. After 2,000-some posts across the past 20 months, there's some personal inventory to take. The blog needs a better look, a tighter focus and probably some other contributors. I don't regret a single second spent doing this over the past 20 months, but feel like it's been too much of a way to hide.

Steelback creditors queue up (Andy Hoffman and Paul Waldie, reportonbusiness.com)
Firms creditors' list includes 400 claims (Tony Van Alphen, Toronto Star, Dec. 15)


Dennis Prouse said...

It's funny that you see your blog to date as a "way to hide", Neate. From my perspective, I see it as a way for a very talented young sports writer to gain some more exposure for his strong work, and be able to show some creativity by writing on a wider array of topics than you get to cover in your "day" job. I would hope that you could parlay this blog into a higher profile gig in the MSM as a feature writer -- you would be damn good. This blog is smart, funny, fresh and thoughtful, and there ain't too many places on the web where you can say all of that. You should be proud of your work.

On to our friend the Beer Baron, whose slide down is gaining speed by the day:

I actually feel badly for Mr. Sieze and Desist. The brutal fact is that he, along with every other unsecured creditor, is only going to get pennies on the dollar of what they are owed. This is the ugly side of bankruptcy -- plenty of regular, working class people get hurt along the way. These are people who offered up their products or services in good faith, and who are now going to get screwed. I once had a summer job for a firm that ended up going under -- I was 16 years old, and got stiffed out of some money. That didn't taste very good.

I can remember a few years ago when the Buffalo Sabres went bankrupt, there was Gary Bettman on TV telling everyone that this was for the best, that now the Sabres could get a "fresh start", blah blah blah. I found myself thinking of all the previous owners' creditors who were about to get stiffed. It's something to think about when people start petitioning for more lenient bankruptcy laws -- it's never just the banks who take a hit when someone folds up.

Oh, and regarding our Vikings, to paraphrase Pulp Fiction, let's not all go...well, you know the rest. The season is truly on the line this Sunday night against the Redskins. If they lose that one, they are on the outside looking in again. Still, you have to be excited about where the Vikings are headed -- they have Adrian Peterson and everyone else who matters under contract for '08, and still have a bit of cap space left over.

sager said...

Thanks, D., for the kind words. To clarify what I mean by hiding, it's kind of felt like this was a way to dodge grown-up responsibilities and what not.

And yes, gotta hold off on the Vikes another week... that game last night was not winning ugly and then some... like Deadspin said, "If this is a playoff team, then when does baseball start?"

It was late in the game, but did you see when Kyle Orton threw 20 yards downfield and got called for intentional grounding? It's like the refs have seen so many hideous throws from the Neckbeard and Sexy Rexy that they just assume they're doing it on purpose.

Dennis Prouse said...

Orton was just cover-your-eyes awful. So much for the storybook ending of the 3rd stringer coming off the bench to prove everyone wrong and lead his team to glory. Err, not so much.

Not that Jackson was much better, but Holy Hannah are the Bears ever in trouble at QB. What possessed them to believe that things were actually going to get get better at that position in '08 with the same personnel? It's a shame for them, as they are wasting tremendous defensive performances week after week.

Oh, and in a shocking development, the Steelback website has now gone offline. In the misery loves company category, the Ottawa 67s are out 58K in unpaid bills from Steelback. I guess my son won't be drinking gallons of free Cheetah samples between periods of games this year...