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FROM THE VALLEY: See What I Did There

I don't know where I'd be without my TV during this period of stay-at-home precautions. I know, I know, I've heard the admonishment before: “Nothing is better than reading a good book.” Reading advocates say that if your bookshelf is smaller than your television screen, it speaks volumes about who you are. (See what I did there … 'volumes'?) A small bookcase is an apparent indication that you're not ready for Mensa consideration and there's a good chance you're stuck for an answer if someone asks “How's it going?”

Guilty on all charges, Your Honor.

My bookshelf is exactly that, a 'book' shelf … singular. It holds the numerical content of its non-plurality, self-descriptive half-name … a book, not books. And as total disclosure, my TV screen is the size of a '57 Buick. (I'm kidding. I've got two books.)

Anyhow, this past weekend I was excited to see some live sporting-events were scheduled for broadcast. There was a four-person golf match and some NASCAR racing. I was filled with anticipation. Unfortunately, I was bored stiff five minutes into both events. What, no roller derby or chess matches to put on?

Maybe my loss of interest was akin to someone who's been fed intravenously for an extended period of time; they need a while to work themselves back up to a more solid regimen.

Also regarding television, CBS - who apparently forgot we are living in 2020, proudly announced with trumpet-like fanfare - that they were returning “The Sunday Night Movie” to their lineup. And, the promo boasted, “Mission Impossible” would be the first movie on the list.

Acting like this piece of news was the panacea of our global woes, and would get people to jump up and down in anticipation, what idiot at the network didn't realize that “Mission Impossible” is seemingly on 10 times a day on one of the 3 gazillion cable stations constantly bombarding our airwaves? Seriously, you can literally wake up at 4 A.M. and find it on somewhere. This isn't 50 years ago when only 3 or 4 networks were around to parse out televised entertainment. Whoop-dee-doo over nothing. Save the champagne.

Next: Have you noticed the scene-stealing character on the Covid-19 updates? I'm talking about the sign-language person taking up almost a third of the screen. I can't take my eyes of off these people. And because of that, I don't hear what I assume is a very important message. I'm too busy watching the exaggerated facial expressions in an effort to see if I can decipher a certain move with a particular word.

I, by no means, am making light of the hearing impaired, but whatever happened to using the optional SAP button where the transcribed/written text would appear below the speaker? That's not good enough? Just wondering because, in my shallow world, I'm afraid I might be missing crucial information by the self-imposed distraction. I'm selfish like that, Ok ..!?.

(Oh boy, here comes the hate e-mail. “Insensitive cad!” And ironically, they're just the opposite of sign language: they come in as words meant to convey a finger.)

On another front: I got a chance to go out golfing the other day. With the relaxed rules I was able to use a cart. It was good to get back into the swing of things. (See what I did there?) I met a new member; his name was Franklin. Tough looking son-of-a-gun. He said he was 92 years old. I was shocked. I said “Franklin, what's your secret?”

He said, “Well, I'm a psychotic serial killer and the cops haven't a clue.”

I don't think Franklin understood my question. But I sure as hell am not going to tell him that's not what I meant. No, sir, Ain't gonna do it. Not to Franklin. And I certainly won't ask him what he shot after his round. (See what I did there?)

Anyhow .. stay safe. If you golf, keep your head down. If you have cabin fever, keep your chin up.

And that's the way it looks from the Valley.

Contact Tom Valley in Medina, NY at:

The author Tom Valley is ready for the next stage of sports return on television

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