Thursday, March 3, 2011

Third Person Thursday: Dr. Seuss Takes on the NFL Collective Bargaining Agreement

As this week's Third Person Thursday post fall smack dab between what would have been the 107th birthday of Dr. Seuss and the (now extended) deadline of the NFL's Collective Bargaining Agreement, I have decided to combine the two into my own version of a Dr. Seuss book. I only wish I had the time and the talent to have included illustrations:

In a far away land called Coopa-Boo-Wall

there lived people who played the most strange sport of all.

You start with eight people then someone shouts “Hark!”

and you throw ‘round a ball shaped like a question mark.

But the details of play aren’t important right now.

We don’t need to discuss the who or the how.

What matters is that this game was quite loved

by all in the land both below-ed and aboved.

To watch their favorite sport, the Coopa-Boo-Wallers came

and paid a whole lot of money to watch every game.

Since the sport was so loved, watched and followed by trillions

the players that played it got paid by the millions.

As more time went by they made more than just millions.

Soon enough the players were being paid billions.

While the players were happy to be making their billions,

the owners of teams were making kajillions.

While billions are nicer than millions, you see,

kajillions are better times one million and three.

Then a player stood up and said, “I see what is what.

You owners make money while I bust my butt.

I’m the one who does work, who runs ‘round the field

but you owners are the ones who take the most yield.

Conditions must change and they must change right now

or you’ll get no more play from this player no how.”

The rest of the players stood up and applauded

‘cause they too had all thought what this player had thought-ed.

The players wouldn’t play lest they got some more cash

that they could see the owners possessed when they’d flash

their possessions like cars that cost in the zillions

while poor players could only afford cars that cost millions.

The owners didn’t take this sitting down, didn’t stew.

They thought, “Sure we have more money and a right to it too.”

They warned all the players, “If you want increased pay

and want us to bow down and consent to your way

and are going to tell us we’re selfish all day

you don’t have to make threats, we just won’t let you play.”

So began a disagreement of a most unpleasant sort,

the kind of disagreement you must settle in court.

So players and owners went to the highest court in the land

to determine how much money should be in precisely which hand.

While they shouted and argued and told each other, “Pound sand,”

and refused to see eye to eye on a single demand,

there were people out there who had all been forgotten,

there were people who thought this was particularly rotten.

While the sides fought to get as much money as they can,

They forgot about who made it all possible: The fan.

The fan bought the tickets. The fan paid the fees.

The fan bought the merchandise, the foam fingers and tees.

The fans sat at home in the extra time they now had

and sat in their armchairs, feeling quite sad.

As they stared at blank TVs and wallowed in sadness

that sadness became much more like a madness.

This went completely unnoticed by those sitting in court.

For them, money and power meant more than the sport.

Eventually the parties had settled it all

and players and owners agreed to play ball.

But while the court battle dragged on for whatever the reason

Their sport had managed to skip a whole season.

While legal battles had raged on month after month,

the fans, who used to love the sport a whole tonth,

found themselves suddenly feeling that it wasn’t much funth

and found something else to watch and watched it at one-th.

Coopa-Boo-Wall had a new favorite sport

one where players rolled beans back and forth down a court.

The old sport had been nearly forgotten by fans

who barely showed up to sit in the stands.

The players and owners did not find this funny

for everyone involved started making less money.

And even though you might think this would drive them to tears

they only had to wait for a couple of years.

Before you knew it, the new sport was making too much

and those players and owners began to argue as such.

When they skipped a season a new sport stepped in then

and the whole silly cycle started over again.

After a few times the old sport was the favorite once more

but several years down the road the same thing was in store.

Players just can’t remain happy getting money to play

and the owners seem to think things should all go their way.

Fans should be warned that all sports are the same.

While the rules may be different they all play this dumb game.

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