A part of

Issue # 6 Thursday, Dec. 11, 1997

About the Author:

Charles Loyd McIntosh

In 1997 Charles Loyd McIntosh was a news writer for the Talledega Daily Home (www.dailyhome.com). He was a former reporter for The Western Star in Bessemer (a small city west of Birmingham), Alabama, and a former Sports Editor for the Clanton Advertiser. At the time he was writing for the Sideroad, Loyd was pursuing a Masters in English degree at the University of Montevallo, Alabama. An avid sports fan, soccer is Loyd's sport of choice, one he has been known to coach in the recent past.

". . .'Keith was a man who realized there were more important things than sports.'
I agree."


Is There Anything More Than Sports?

David Lee Roth of the great Van Halen once sang "Where have the good times gone?" Even though this song came out about 15 years ago, I think that they still have some pertinent meaning now, especially in the minds of NBA fans and critics.

Ever since Latrell Spreewell tried to strangle his head coach, you would think our society is on the brink of disaster. Johnny Cochran has been called in to play the race card, and I, for one, have had it everyone screaming "racism." It's about as much fun to listen to as a train wreck or a cry for help.

The America Journalism Review recently did an interview with Keith Olbermann. Many late night sports fans will remember him as THE reason to watch Sports Center on Sunday nights. The man had a way with words and a biting, cynical wit to make anyone who says they write for living seem like a worthless hack. Olbermann was easily the smartest anchor at ESPN, according to his Sunday night partner Dan Patrick. He said that Olbermann rarely ever talked about sports in the news room and that he was always talking about history, politics, etc. The writer of the AJR article (whose name escapes me right now) said "Keith was a man who realized there were more important things than sports."

I agree.

Now don't get me wrong. I love sports and have been around athletics all of my life as a player, coach and now a sports writer. I make my living talking to you all about sports. It' just simply what I do. However, I gladly realize and accept the fact that there are more important issues that we're all dealing with. Yes, more important than sports.

On the other hand, if you pay close attention to most of our media outlets, especially television, it appears that there isn't much else going on to talk about.

For example, the last couple of days I've switched over to CNN's Crossfire immediately after Sports Center. What do you think they have been discussing? Latrell Spreewell strangling PJ Carlisimo. Later, I'll switch over to CNBC and/or MSNBC and the lead story on both networks is still the death of Princess Diana or Jon Benet Ramsey. Here's a news flash. They're dead. Been dead. Gonna be dead. Move on.

It's getting to the point where it is impossible to tell news from fiction.

Which is why, I guess, people immerse themselves in sports. It's easy to see how people, including myself, can get wrapped up in sports. When everything that passes itself as new and important information but is really rumor and entertainment hidden behind a news desk, sports can really take on driving force in society. And my job is to try and walk that tight rope everyday.

It's a strange position to be in.

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Text copyright Charles Loyd MacIntosh, 1997 - '98. Part of the original Sideroad ezine.
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