Hi folks, I’m on the road, a day removed from taking in a Safeco Field and soaking in the sites and sounds of Seattle. Despite the fact that I have no internet access, I am still honoring my solemn duty to provide you all with your weekly helping of Business Day One. In previous weeks, I have handed out my Salute to Nerds In Sports to the very deserving Tim Duncan and Mike Mussina.
But this week, I’m honoring a story, told nearly a decade ago, about what may likely be the single greatest nerdy sports event in history. Doug Glanville, a nerd, homered twice in one game off of fellow nerd Curt Schilling. His reason was revenge. Sweet, brilliant revenge. So enjoy it, world. And salute the redemption of Bingbong!
Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to eat five pounds of smoked salmon.
Last week, Tim Duncan was duly saluted by Business Day One for his stunning contributions to both sports history and nerd culture. For this week’s salute, we look to the baseball diamond, where a geek has been outthinking hitters for eighteen years. Michael Cole Mussina, we salute you. And here’s why.
To be a pitcher that throws into one’s late thirties, you need to be smart. You must adjust your repertoire over time as your velocity decreases, and change your approach against batters that have seen you dozens of times. To be a competant starter for two decades takes fortitude and substantial wits. Mike Mussina has both, and has enough of both that he has some to spare. The Moose (a nerdy nickname if I’ve ever heard one) loves crossword puzzles. He doesn’t just love them, but he’s excellent at them, as evidenced by his appearance in the documentary Wordplay. That’s right, he’s so into crossword puzzles that he jumped at the change to be a part of a documentary about crossword puzzles.
His intelligence manifested itself early, in his hometown of Montoursville, Pennsylvania. He was nearly the valedictorian of his high school, which was no small feat considering he was also spending countless hours becomming as good a pitcher as he could be. He plowed through Stanford in three years and came out with an economics degree and gaudy enough college numbers to spark interest from the Baltimore Orioles.
A crossword enthusiast with a Stanford degree and over 250 career wins in the AL East definitely has the credentials for a Nerds In Sports Salute, but Moose decided to put one last bit of icing on the cake.
Apparently, when he checks into hotels, he uses the pseudonym of Simon Phoenix.
That’s right, Demoliton Man‘s Simon Phoenix.
Mike Mussina, on behalf of Nerds on Sports and the San Angeles Police Department, we salute you.
We here at Nerds On Sports never promised unbiased reporting, eye opening analysis or proper grammar. But one line we insist on holding is that of unabashed nerdery. We are nerds, we love being nerds, and we appreciate when other nerds call us nerds. A true nerd goes about their nerdy business with either pride of gleeful indifference to judgement, and such dedication to happiness is a marvel to behold.
On the playgrounds of their youth, such nerds had to deal with the barbs and taunts of others, and it took great strength of character to keep on rolling the dice and reading the fantasy novels that made them happy. As these nerds grow up, they can either enter into an environment that supports such nerdery (like, say, a college full of geeky suburban kids) or hinders it (like, for instance, the U.S. Marine Corps or the National Hockey League). For those gamers, comic book buffs and ham radio enthusiasts that are fighting the good fight in inhospitable climates, we here at Nerds On Sports would like to salute you. As such, I am hereby instituting a new award in Business Day One. To honor men and women that practice their geeky trade in the field of professional athletes, I will be handing out the coveted Nerds On Sports Salute To Nerds In Sports. It is important to note that there is no trophy. It is an actual salute. So if you’re named, please feel free to stop by my apartment when you’re in Boston so I can salute you.
The first recipient of the NOS Salute To NIS should be no surprise to those that follow both sports and the Renaissance Faire circuit. With his dedication to both great on-court body position and eating turkey legs off the bone, I am proud to now salute San Antonio Spurs center Tim Duncan. Read More