So you thought there were no new TV comedies because of that whole writer’s strike fiasco.
Then you saw the redux debut of “American Gladiators.” And suddenly “The Office” had Emmys competition.
No, I couldn’t resist the temptation of tuning in to Sunday night’s pseudo-sports spectacular. It was that or the Roger Clemens “60 Minutes” interview, and I figured Rocket wasn’t confessing.
So there I was, waiting with millions of fellow Gen Xers who made the original Gladiators such a hit in the 1990s, all of us ready for the show’s triumphant return.
We’re still waiting.
I’ve never had an acid flashback, but can it be much different than this? Camera shots shakier than a crackhead on his fifth Red Bull. Some dude named Wolf howling like you took away his steroids. Host Hulk Hogan not quite knowing best.
All that’s missing are some past-their-prime athletes out there embarrassing themselves. Mark McGwire or Marion Jones, anyone?
On to the week in review.
Monday, Dec. 31
Reports surface that a Connecticut boy who’s worn the same Brett Favre jersey for four years finally saw his idol in person at Sunday’s Packers game. In a related story, Green Bay police finally solve the mystery behind those toxic fumes in section 104.
Milwaukee’s Bucks celebrate New Year’s Eve with a 114-69 setback at Detroit, prompting Pistons play-by-play man Mark Champion to say, “If I’m Milwaukee, I’ve got to be embarrassed by this.”Milwaukee’s marketing department reminds players that 40-point losses are not part of the team’s 40th anniversary celebration.
Tuesday, Jan. 1
While their team drubs just-glad-to-be-there Hawaii by a score of 41-10 in the Sugar Bowl, Georgia fans taunt the Hawaiians with chants of “Over-rated,” destroying what remains of the Southern hospitality myth.
Retiring Michigan football coach Lloyd Carr leads his unranked Wolverines to a 41-35 upset of ninth-ranked Florida in the Capital One Bowl. Party-crashing Ohio State fans greet the result with chants of “One more year!”
Wisconsin ends its football season with a 21-17 loss in the Outback Bowl, but players still return home with fond memories of those tasty “Bloomin’ Onions.”
Wednesday, Jan. 2
The Sports Nut, in his first athletic action since the Reagan administration, does battle as a member of his company’s new indoor soccer team. Still missing in action are his right hamstring, both quadriceps and several shreds of his dignity.
Thursday, Jan. 3
John Heyman of SportsIllustrated.com writes that commissioner Bud Selig is one of baseball’s winners for 2007. Selig modestly accepts the praise by saying he “did it for the people of Milwaukee, the greatest fans in the world.”
Friday, Jan. 4
Without injured star player Michael Redd, the Bucks suffer a 101-77 home loss to the Washington Wizards. Bucks coach Larry Krystkowiak chalks it up to Washington’s advantage in “the magical art of team defense.”
Saturday, Jan. 5
The Milwaukee Wave score a 12-10 win over the visiting Philadelphia Kixx. Philadelphia’s indoor soccer squad promptly blames its loss on the controversial new signing of some player named S. Nutt.
Tom Brady is the near-unanimous choice for NFL MVP, with only Frank Cooney’s vote for Brett Favre denying the Patriots’ QB. Brady gets his vengeance by also winning the SAG Award for Best Actor, the Nobel Prize for Physics, and both Democratic and Republican primaries in New Hampshire.
Sunday, Jan. 6
The Bucks temporarily silence their critics with a gutsy 93-89 road victory over Charlotte. But NBA commissioner David Stern denies Milwaukee’s petition for an immediate 20-game series against Charlotte.
Packers fans, distraught that their team had the whole weekend off, spend the day wandering aimlessly in their Brett Favre jerseys. Except for the parents of that Connecticut 11-year-old, who spend the day shopping for his teenage wardrobe, and succeed by finding an Aaron Rodgers jersey.
Be sure to join me, Doug Russell and Mike Wickett for Tuesdays with Howie, heard every Tuesday during the 6 a.m. hour on SportsRadio 1250 AM. You can also hear me monthly on WUWM’s Lake Effect. And don’t miss our Bar Time column.