Peter King’s World Cup Monday Morning Douchebag isn’t that bad.

17 Jun

Look, Peter King is kind of an idiot. That’s been covered extensively already (elsewhere on internet). So when I heard he, who has never professed even a passing interest in soccer, was being sent by SI to cover the world cup this summer, I was more than a little annoyed/crestfallen/angry. Mind, I like the idea of an intelligent, eloquent American sportswriter who only follows American sports going to the world cup. He would have credibility with skeptics back home when he said “Really, everyone, this is something special. Maybe you should watch this.” (We have so many skeptics here!) He would accurately and stirringly describe the scenes he encountered, and confront certain assumptions and American indifference by saying something like “This dwarfs everything American sport can offer. Period. End of story.”

But of my list there, Peter King is only American, sportswriter, and America-centric in his sports following. Little intelligence, poor writing skills. And those are so key to, you know, conveying experience to others. (They are also key to being a journalist, but that has not stopped this man from becoming even sort of famous as a writer. The world’s injustices are unending, and come in varying sizes and shapes.) Further, this guy has built his career on a sort of everyman, “aw shucks” style of writing which I guess is relatable, filling his articles with obvious observations and stating his awe about that. (“Today I heard the water in my toilet actually is connected, through pipes, to my neighbor’s toilet. What a country!” is something he may have already written, or will soon.) Before he left, on his twitter he responded to a question about who he’d be supporting in the world cup by saying he was only there for SI until the group stages, and then he was going home. And then he arrived in S. Africa and filled his Twitter with asinine observations and complaints about the culture there and other comments of the sort you’d expect someone to say who’s never enjoyed soccer before. So I slogged through his first article with a sense of doom and frustration, seeing him clumsily fail to describe what he was seeing in any convincing or inspiring way, making the world’s greatest sporting event sound quotidian and as boring as every American non-soccer fan believes it is. UGH, he’s such a bad writer! SO BAD! He isn’t very good at all! He’s just really terrible at his job! (<– How Peter King's best work would describe Peter King's writing.)

Anyway, all of that to say, today’s column isn’t that bad.

Thanks, Pete!


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