Saturday, August 09, 2008

Aggressively Fatuous

I missed the opening ceremonies to the Olympics last night (wedding), and so when NBC announced they were coming back to show clips, I made sure to be in front of the set. But back in the studio, Jim Lampley was sitting next to--was it, yes, oh no--Jimmy Roberts. Roberts has achieved special status in the pantheon of American sports journalists for being the most sentimental, and yet at the same time, substance-free, of all commentators. NBC rolls him out for their treacly and imbecilic athlete bios, always heavy on mental or physical barriers, always free of humanity. When Lampley turned to him for a report on the opening ceremony, he put his most appropriate foot forward (paraphrasing) saying,: "Well Jim, there's no way to capture that stunning spectacle in words ...." before going into his usual fluff piece, full of his over-emphasized narrative piffle.

There's a word for this, and I'd love it if Roberts' commentaries were cited in the dictionary as an example:
fatuous (adj.) - foolish or inane, esp. in an unconscious, complacent manner; silly
Roberts is the Homer Simpson of commentators, relying on heavy emphasis to sell his terrible prose, as when Homer lectures Lisa about something he doesn't even vaguely understand.

Ah, the Olympics, when NBC's coverage always threatens to overwhelm the actual drama with corporate sacharine, Jimmy Roberts handing out the packets of Splenda...

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