Friday, September 7, 2007
Oh No! Linda Robertson is Back!
Boo Creepy Sportwriter! Hurray Beer!
With all apologies to the guy from the Red Stripe beer commercials, the site of Linda Roberton's article in today's Miami Herald brought back horrible flashbacks of terrible sports journalism. For the past year, I've actually found the Herald's sports section actually readable and enjoyable just because of Robertson's absence. Supposedly she had spent the last year as a journalism fellow at the University of Michigan. Let's hope she took a couple of writing courses. Oh well, time to go back to reading the Sun Sentinel.
Robertson is by far the worst sports columnist I've ever had the misfortune of reading. According to her bio, she's been writing for the Miami Herald since 1983. Roberton is like a virus or a disease. She never seems to go away. Even when she does, she comes back with a vengeance.
So why do I dislike Robertson? Actually I've never met her in person. She may very well be a nice person and means well. The problem I have with Robertson is her blatant stupidity. Following Hurricane Andrew in 1992, she once wrote an article how the University of Miami should drop its nickname as The Hurricanes out of respect for the storm victims. After all these years, I still remember her saying, "How can we ever give a heartfelt cheer for the Hurricanes again?" Are you kidding me?
First of all, my parents lost their home in Hurricane Andrew. I was there with them as the house was torn to shreads and still remember vividly what it felt like to live helplessly in the ruins while waiting for the National Guard to rescue us. But I haven't met anyone stupid enough to believe UM should change its nickname simply because of Hurricane Andrew. That is until Linda Robertson's crazy piece.
I've been reading the Miami Herald since I moved to South Florida in 1986. The only article that almost matches the idiocy of Robertson's 1992 piece was when Greg Cote felt compelled to suggest the Dolphins should have traded Dan Marino in 1993 in favor of starting Scott Mitchell. I've read hundreds and thousands of articles over the years. But those two just stick out as sore reminders of sportswriters on drugs.
In Cote's case, I've read enough of his work to realize he's a good writer. He even occasionally pokes fun at himself for that infamous Scott Mitchell / Dan Marino piece. But Robertson is just consistantly bad. Her only purpose is to basically get a rise out of the normal sportsfan.
A typical Robertson article will focus on how great Olympic sports like gymnastics, figure skating and the WNBA are compare to major profesional sports. Let's face it, Joe Sportsfan doesn't care about gymnastics or figure skating. Nobody cares about the Canadian women's curling team. When you pick up the sports section, what kind of ads do you see? You see ads for strip clubs and auto dealerships. That's what guys care about. That's the main demographic that reads the sports section.
Before anyone starts to think I'm a male chauvinist pig. This is not an indictment on female sportswriters. There are many good female sports writers around the country. I think Michelle Kaufman does a good job for The Herald. I've always had a lot of respect for Christine Brennan, who's written for the Washington Post and USA Today.
But how can somebody like Robertson last so long with a paper like the Herald? I haven't found anyone who actually admits to reading her articles and actualy agreeing or liking them. She goes out of her way to put down profesional and major college sports. But yet without them, she would have nothing to write about--except of course gymnastics and figure skating. Oh well. I guess the Miami Herald sports section can now return to its rightful place, the bottom of the bird cage.