Twitter: America’s new virtual bar fight

The RouseNot to sound like an old curmudgeon (sometimes I can’t help myself) but it used to be that if you had a beef with someone, you would confront them face to face, address the issue at hand and either resolve it in a peaceful, diplomatic fashion or put up your dukes until there was one man standing… which is why it’s always good to carry around an extra Ronda Rousey with you, just in case shit gets real.

These days, such resolutions are a thing of the past as arguments have become virtual… yet still as pointless as ever.

Twitter can do that to a culture.

As for little ol’ me of the 662 Twitter followers, I’ve only engaged in one slightly heated Twitter-spat.  Not long ago, a reader took offense to the fact that I insinuated Ken Griffey, Jr. might have taken performance enhancing drugs, as if I were the only person to have ever thought that.

She fought back.

After several Tweets back and forth, we eventually worked things out.  After all, I’m a lover, not a fighter.  Altercation is not my bag, baby.

The same cannot be said for Curt Schilling, Keith Olberman and a healthy handful of others who over the years have let this thing they call Twitter get the best of them.

CurtNow Curt Schilling may at least have been justified in his recent Twitter rants.  A proud father, the former sock Tweeted a congratulatory message to his daughter who had just received a softball scholarship to Salve Regina University.  Perfectly appropriate.  Two college students, however, one who happened to work (and now no longer does) for the New York Yankees, responded rather inappropriately.

The always expressive Schilling went on to blast all those who had Tweeted anything negative and disrespectful about his daughter.  That’s the way he rolls and rightfully so.

The usually respected Keith Olberman, on the other hand, a man far more educated than Schilling, let Twitter get the best of him.  After misreading a tweet promoting millions of dollars the university had raised for pediatric cancer, he called Penn State and essentially its entire student body “pitiful.”  Olberman went on to use Twitter as what he called his “batting practice,” by berating all things Nittany for the Sandusky atrocities of years past.  The more logical thinkers among us might consider not holding current students accountable for things that happened on campus before they even enrolled.  Needless to say, Olberman was not acting or Tweeting logically.

ESPN suspended Olberman who has since returned, apologizing on air for his behavior, calling it “stupid and immature.”  He went easy on himself.

ChefThere’s a scene in Jon Favreau’s latest project “Chef,” where Favreau plays, you guessed it, a chef.  He picks a fight on Twitter with a famous food reviewer who panned his cuisine.  I won’t elaborate on the rest of the film as it’s one you should see but the point is Favreau’s Twitter account expands as more people follow his spat with the critic.

That’s what athletes and movie stars with a Twitter account face every time they click that application: they run the risk of saying something stupid, leading to either an apology, the hiring a cleaner to apply some well-needed image repair or worse, an athlete claiming that his account was “hacked.”  Spare me.

Twitter represents both the best and the worst of social media.  It gives us a glimpse into the souls of those we admire or abhor 140 characters at a time.  We quickly discover whether they can spell, punctuate or whether they’re an absolute lunatic.  And we judge them for it.  Accordingly.

There are those out there, the Twitter paparazzi, who sit, watch and wait for famous people to say something stupid.  When they do, it becomes news.

It’s Twitter warfare, America’s new virtual bar fight, just as classless as our old bar fights and equally as pointless.

Either way, it’s here to stay.  And like the bar fights of yesteryear, I suggest enjoying it from afar.

12 thoughts on “Twitter: America’s new virtual bar fight

  1. Chris


    Curt Schiling has now bemoaned the fact he’s not inducted into the Hall of Fame . Whoa is me and the slight as he suggested , it was done for political reasons . This being the same moron, who along with his business partners bilked the taxpayers of Rhode Island out of tens of millions of dollars , filing for Chapter 11, after they mismanaged their company , with his seeking to blame others for his own ineptitude as an alleged businessman . We should all bemoan Schilling for his plight and his using his recent ill health to seek empathy from others . Again, whoa is me .

    31-0 and still rolling along ? That’s how good the Wildcats are ? Damn . Who out there might be good enough to take them down ?

  2. I don’t have a problem with Schilling speaking his mind, Al. We all do it. Heck, you and I do it on a daily basis.

    If some punk talks smack about his daughter, let him go after him. I fail to see what his illness has anything to do with that.

    And yes, Kentucky made it through the regular season unblemished. They’ve got a conference tourney and then the big dance to seal the deal.

    I’ll be interested in seeing if anyone can knock them off. At this point, I’m not sure who it would be.

  3. Chris

    Here’s my point concerning Schilling, if he’s so protective of his daughter , he should also be weary of the fact, as he’s in the public eye. She too , at some point , will become the focal point of a news’ story . Let’s be real also , it’s not as if she won’t trade in on using her father’s name .

    Look at Dale Earnhardt Jr , how far would be have gotten without his last name ? His NASCAR has not been stellar but somehow , he’s voted the most popular driver in the sport ?

    Kentucky have proven this season they’re a hell of a team . Yet I believe there is a real chance they could be an upset in the offing during the NCAA Tournament .

    Maurice Jones-Drew is calling it quits after only seven years in the NFL ? Shelf-life of an NFL running back is indeed priceless and damn well dangerous . MJD should consider himself lucky his career has lasted beyond the average career span for a player at the position ( three-and-half-years) .

    Tophatal ….

  4. Season ticket buyers seeking to pay for tickets , exceed the team’s expectations . Unless they (Orlando City soccer franchise) have some semblance of meaningful success within two years , it could prove costly for the newest professional sports’ franchise in the area. Indentured slavery comes to MLS (Soccer) ? Ten years as a prerequisite , before being granted a form of free agency ? Does anyone within the MLS hierarchy understand the concept of free agency, much less their idiotic stance on the issue .

    What are the Orlando Magic going to do , now that they’re no longer the only show in town ? The Amway Center will become elephant’s graveyard in terms if NBA basketball and that particular franchise . Has anyone within the front office got a damn clue about putting a winning product on a basketball court , much less assembling a competent coaching staff ?

    So much is made about Central Florida being a hotbed of sports’ fanaticism . but in reality the owners of the professional sports’ franchises are simply bereft of intelligence and the media remain frigging clueless .

    Jeff Vinick is being lauded for developing Channel Side but the media forget it’s not Vinick’s money that has set everything going, but it has been the backing of none other than Bill Gates. What does that tell you about those boneheads in the Tampa Bay area , who call themselves journalists within the print and television market covering sports ?

    Tophatal ………..

  5. Chris

    If the Kentucky Wildcats go down in flames during the NCAA Tournament, having not won the damn thing , the finger-pointing will begin and be aimed directly at John Calipari .

    Is Willy Cauley-Stein the best player in College Basketball ? He’s up for the John Wooden Award and in all likelihood the Naismith Trophy (College Player of the Year) as well.

  6. Chris

    Race baiting during Black History Month, as brought to you by Stephen A Smith. Justified or simply Smith being an @ss ?

    Tophatal …..

  7. Chris

    In light of what’s happened with the Syracuse Men’s Basketball program and the sanctions placed on them by the NCAA. Do you believe Jim Boeheim should step down or is there a possible likelihood he could be fired ?

    If he knew of many of the alleged violations , surely he should have stepped up to the plate and at least had some sort of dialog with Daryl Gross ?

    Boeheim , has stated he’s not going anywhere . This could all get very ugly if there’s no blame being apportioned anywhere . Someone high up in the athletics’ program hierarchy must have known what was going on .

    College sports and its shenanigans , has really become a joke at every level right on up the university Presidents , themselves . Way too much money and not enough integrity on any level has made this all too sordid and corrupt . There’s nothing about it that is pure or meant to be pure , even the NCAA Tournament , itself .

    A program (Syracuse) of that magnitude being hit the way it has , will leave something of a black eye on the basketball program in particular , which in many respects, was representative of the entire athletics’ program of the Orange-men .

    Tophatal ……

  8. Chris

    If Laila Ali (Muhammad Ali’s daughter) and Ronda Rousey were to meet in the octagon . Who would you favor in such a bout ? Ali’s boxing skills against Rousey’s mix of martial arts (Judo , jujitsu and grappling) ?

    It’d be interesting, were UFC President Dana White able to have both signed to a proposed bout . Yet all the talk seem to be about Rousey facing Gina Carano . Speaking of which , are you going to watch the match-up between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao ? Personally, I believe it’s a fight that is taking place five years too late , with both fighters now merely in it for the money (estimated payout of between $50 million apiece , with Mayweather likely to make well over $90 million from this one fight,alone) ____ , rather than the competitive aspect of it all !

    Tophatal …..

  9. I may go check out a soccer game in Orlando this season, Al. My dad said he went to the first game. Over 60,000 fans. What’s up with that?

    Kentucky going down in flames in the tournament? I don’t see it. I would like to see them play some of the more talented teams though. Once again, the SEC was pretty lackluster this year.

    I didn’t hear the whole Smith-Philly-Kelly thing. Is it really something I should be paying attention to or is it Smith trying to get his voice in the air again?

    Al, we figured Syracuse was going to get penalized. Heck, they punished themselves. We knew an NCAA ruling wouldn’t be far behind.

    My understanding is that most MMA fighters would take down boxers. Of course, they’re all on drugs too so that helps.

  10. “usually respected Keith Olberman”

    I couldn’t read further with a straight face. This guys started as a sports journalist and then let his ego grow soooooo large that he simply cannot be trusted to tell ANY story without adding his own slanted moralistic leanings and thus loses ALL credibility.

    Too bad none of the comments reflected on the Twitter posting antics…

    Oh, and Al… it’s “woe” and not “whoa”.. LOL Big difference there chippy LOL

  11. Tree…

    All these guys are too big for their britches. I know Dub is a big Dan Patrick fan but personally I think he’s pompous. He treats the other guys in his studio as if their underlings. I get that he’s had a lengthy career but I’m not so sure that warrants treating others like shit

    I can hardly stand listening to SVP either. Fortunately Ryan Russillo evens him out.

    Whaddaya gonna do, right?

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