• Mike Montone

Talk Show Host Fired After Sideline Reporter Overreacts To Tepid Joke

“What do we want? We don’t know! When do we want it? Now!” – Womyn


On an internet full of hot takes, it seems the hottest emerge when the worlds of social justice and sports collide. One such collision happened on the first Monday night of the 2020 NFL season, and it hit harder than the on field action…or something. I think that’s how a douchey USA Today columnist would start a blog post about a topic like this — or maybe I’m thinking of Bob Costas proselytizing on an NFL Sunday — I dunno, but a lot of people in sports media are complete ass hats (more on that in a minute).


The latest round of ass hattery was kicked off when radio host Dan McNeil of Chicago’s 670 The Score sent out the following tweet about ESPN sideline reporter Maria Taylor: “NFL sideline reporter or a host for the AVN annual awards presentation?”


It’s probably a far cry from whatever chicks wear when they’re presenting the AVN Award for Best Solo Squirt Scene, but can we agree that this is also an asinine looking jacket that was deserving of at least some form of ridicule? She looks like she got a last minute invite to a Halloween party and decided that she would go as a ‘sexy Michael Jackson’ and if she showed up to said party with her fist halfway up the ass of a My Buddy doll, I’d tell you she nailed the look. (BTW this isn’t about Maria Taylor being hot or not, she is, but if any Saturday night at any bar in America has shown us anything, it’s that attractive women are not above acting like petulant children, which is exactly what she did).


I couldn’t find out how old McNeil actually is because an article referencing his age had a paywall around it and the Chicago Tribune is out of their fucking mind if they think I’m paying for a subscription to them or any online paper, but the previewed excerpt said he was ‘edging toward the end of middle age’ so let’s just call him 60. Guess what? That ‘AVN awards host’ line is exactly what I would expect out of a 60-year-old sports guy. Frankly, it’s what I want to hear out of a 60-year-old sports guy. That’s the character those guys are supposed to play in our greater media landscape. They tell tepid, harmless jokes that reference something vaguely inappropriate, and congratulate themselves for dropping a real knee slapper.

Taylor and her online cohorts weren’t laughing — why would they? It’s 2020, and skin everywhere is thinner than it’s ever been. The station fired McNeil and released the following statement:


“Its degrading and humiliating tone to a fellow female broadcaster was unacceptable” – the station said of the tweet.


Really? Was it? It was a shitty, corn ball, dad joke. If you watch the NFL pregame shows or the NBA on TNT all they do is make fun of each other. It’s sports, it’s a jockular environment, in fact most NFL and NBA pregame shows revolve around a cast of eccentrically dressed former athletes making terrible jokes about each other’s terrible clothing and receding hairlines. Getting her jacket mocked on the internet is literally what Maria Taylor signed up for, but since social justice assholes have to come along and ruin everything, McNeil is out of a job and we have to put up with an army of broads, simps, and white knights throwing hissy fits about imaginary sexism.



No you fucking dope. It’s not a high school musical. No one cares if you ‘crushed it’, it’s sports. You wear a ridiculous leather jacket on the sideline, we get to make fun of you, THAT’S equality. And by the way, nobody has ever ‘crushed’ a sideline reporting gig. Unless Tony Siragusa trips, falls, and lands on the water boy, the sideline reporter isn’t crushing anything. It’s a mindless, do-nothing job that a freshman journalism student could easily ‘crush’. For those who don’t watch sports, here’s what sideline reporting consists of:

Pre-game: “It’s a windy day and that could impact the kicking game. Back to you in the studio Doug”


Halftime: “I caught up with Coach ______ and he tells me his team is gonna have to step things up in the second half if they want to win this game.”

Post-game: “Well Coach _____ that was quite a win, how did you manage to pull it off?”

Done.


There’s nothing there to ‘crush’. The Monday Night Football sideline reporting gig used to belong to Booger McFarland who might actually be retarded. Thus by the standard set by her predecessors, all Maria Taylor had to do to ‘crush the gig’ was not drool all over her microphone or idiotic looking jacket.

ESPN’s resident buffoon Jemele Hill weighed-in on the issue as well, because of course she couldn’t help herself, and thank God because I don’t know where we would be without her sage insight. It’s no surprise that she called him an asshole, as it ‘takes one to know one’ and as I see it Jemele is one of the biggest assholes in sports media.

Not only did Taylor ‘clap back’ herself, but she also retweeted the flood of people who came out of the woodwork to ensure that never again would a woman suffer the ‘humiliation’ of a dad joke.

I’m not going to do you, my dear readers, the indignity of having to read the stream of retweets on her timeline that are making this a race and gender issue, but suffice to say there are a lot of them. It got so out of hand that I’m reminded of one of Keith Hernandez’s observations on female sports reporters.


“I won’t say that women belong in the kitchen, but they don’t belong in the dugout,” – Keith.



Keith might be onto something here. Football is the ultimate toughness sport. It’s 60 minutes of shit talking and violence. A guy making fun of your jacket is de riguer. We’re talking about a sport where some fan bases have developed a reputation for throwing ice balls at opposing teams. In Philly they booed Santa and cheered when Michael Irvin broke his neck. If you wear an absurd looking jacket, then expect to get ribbed for it. It isn’t sexist, you just looked like a jackass so you got roasted (poorly, but still roasted). Your reaction Maria, and everyone else’s was way out of line.


These responses were to be expected from the mainstream media, as everything is a fucking cause celebre these days, and women are made out to be perpetual victims — which is the exact message this uproar sends. For all the shit we hear about how ‘tough’ women are, you’d think they could weather a mild wisecrack about their ridiculous looking leather jacket without getting someone fired over it — those who can’t probably shouldn’t be working in a visual medium…by which I mean either learn to take a joke or get the fuck off the TV screen. I work in radio and people make fun of my appearance on a near daily basis, it’s part of the gig.


The correct take on this is that the radio station, by calling the joke ‘degrading and humiliating’, is actually the one who is being degrading and humiliating. They, along with anyone else who simped and got in formation for this highly compensated sideline reporter, were behaving in a highly infantilizing manner when they implied that Taylor was unable to survive a shitty internet joke.


Among those simps was Barstool Sports writer Jack Mac. Jack Mac, said McNeil got ‘dunked on’ by Taylor in her response, but mostly it just looks like she’s throwing an emotional shitfit over a joke. That’s not ‘dunking’, it’s just ‘acting like a woman.’


Even more disappointing however, was the response from the Barstool comment section. Once a bastion of frat house humor and over-the-top insults, many commenters revealed themselves to be total pussies.


“I’m not a fan of cancel culture. That said, this comment was out of bounds in my opinion. Talking about a fellow media member that way is like talking to a coworker that way. It’s not done.” – Total Pussy Who Is In Fact A Fan Of Cancel Culture.


“A fellow media member” really? It’s fucking a sports guy making fun of a sideline reporter, not a war correspondent being held by the Islamic State. You actually have to be a pussy to have that thought and then emphatically tag it with ‘It’s not done.’ Go give yourself a wedgie…pussy.

“How dumb do you have to be to tweet that out in 2020?” – Some Jerkoff.


You have to be a sports guy who cares about sports and is probably way too worried about the MLB Wildcard race to acknowledge the imaginary plight of women in sports media. In this commenter’s defense, maybe he really was looking at it through the ‘better safe than sorry, if you tweet it people might get mad’ lens. That I can at least wrap my head around.

Another guy writes:


“Stupid games beget stupid prizes.  How hard is it to not be sexist?” – Whiny Little Bitch.

Well allow me to retort, how hard is it not to be a huge cuck? Because that’s what you sound like when you claim this tweet was ‘sexist’. The joke wasn’t about her as a woman, it was about her wearing a silly looking jacket on the sideline on national TV. Barstool is a place for bawdy talk about sports, funny videos, and anything Abella Danger can fit inside of her orifices, let’s leave the woke bullshit to Deadspin.


In summary, suck my dick.

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