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Danehy

This is what happens when Tom listens to talk radio while running errands

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I had to run some errands the other day. I had a new CD from Bonnie Raitt—who can still bring it—but I thought I'd listen to the radio instead. Perhaps I could learn something.

The guy who's on KNST AM 790/FM 97.1 in the morning, Garret Lewis, was having a field day. Apparently, the night before, while discussing the U.S. Supreme Court's hearing of oral arguments on Arizona's SB 1070 law, the Rev. Al Sharpton made a mistake and introduced Congressman Raúl Grijalva as "Paul" Grijalva. Judging by Lewis' absolutely giddy radio demeanor, this Paul Grijalva gaffe meant that SB 1070 was going to be upheld; Congressman Grijalva should be kicked out of office; and all black people are stupid.

It was ridiculous; the guy made a mistake. A capital R looks like a capital P. Paul's a more-common name than Raúl. Last year, I heard Chris Matthews make the same mistake on MSNBC.

And then, just like that, Lewis' people dug up the Matthews mistake. What a stinging indictment of the liberal media! All I know is that I heard a whole lot of interesting pronunciations of John Boehner's name on Fox News before he became speaker of the House.

I switched over to sports-talk radio for a while, but it happened to be the worst week of the year for sports. Yes, even worse than the week of the Major League Baseball All-Star Game. Unfortunately for me, last week was the run-up the National Football League's annual player draft, the most overhyped "event" of the year.

I'm an American and a guy, so I love football. I prefer the college game to the NFL, but I still follow the most-popular league in the country. I even have a favorite team. (Don't ask.) When I was a kid, I used to like to pick up the sports page the day after the draft, look at the agate type, and check out the players my beloved Rams had drafted. Then I would put the paper down and not think about the NFL again until the season started four months later.

Nowadays, fanned by the demands (and supply) of 24-hour-a-day talk radio, the NFL is a year-round juggernaut, and the "science" of drafting players has been elevated to a religion. As I've said in the past, the worst thing about it is that there are people who are paid six-figure salaries to try to guess which person is going to be drafted by which team. And they suck at it!

A baseball player can fail seven times out of 10 at the plate and still be a .300 hitter—and maybe even make the Hall of Fame. Well, these clowns aren't even .300 hitters, and it seems that what they do is a whole lot easier than trying to hit a 98 mph fastball. There are only 32 teams, and the needs of each team are pretty well established before the draft begins.

For a full month heading up to the draft, ESPN radio and TV waste countless hours on this nonsense. Instead of showing NBA highlights or even discussing (ugh!) baseball, they have two white guys arguing about whether a guy from Montana State's arms might be too short to get him drafted in the third round.

What's most infuriating is that these guys can't even get the first 10 picks right. As soon as they miss one, that jumbles up everything that follows, and their correctness percentage tumbles. Boy, I'd love to have a job where I can be right 30 percent of the time and still get paid.

(Don't even think about saying it!)

Now, after wasting your time by discussing the idiots who discuss the NFL draft, I'll give you a quick quiz. Name four NFL teams whose geographical name and team name are alliterative (i.e., start with the same letter, like Tucson Toros). Don't cheat; don't look it up on your phone. The winner gets a call from our editor, who will gladly tell you what school this year's No. 1 draft pick attended. Oddly enough, the Indianapolis Colts also drafted a teammate of the top pick, tight end Coby Fleener. (Yes, Coby Fleener, which is officially the least-intimidating name in the history of football.)

Now, back to the radio: I skipped over Rush Limbaugh, who has now devolved into the 12th-generation caricature of himself. Instead, I heard Sean Hannity patting himself on the back for having hysterically proclaimed that Sharia law would seep into Egypt after the Arab Spring uprising.

Hannity was reading from a press release that claimed that the new Egyptian government was considering a law that would make it OK for a Muslim man to continue having sex with his wife up to six hours after she had died. That immediately brought to mind the punch line from that old joke about the guy on trial for necrophilia: "Your Honor, I didn't know she was dead. I just thought she was British."

Hannity did mention that a Muslim cleric had addressed the uproar by stating that the law would also apply to widows up to six hours after their husbands had died. I'll leave it to every woman who has ever had sex to provide the follow-up to that proclamation.

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