Ron B wants his catchphrase back

Hey, sports-fans, Ron “You Stay Classy, San Diego” Burgundy just called to tell us he’d really appreciate it if we all just chilled on the use of the word class–especially when referencing sporting events and athletic competition.

We’re talking class as defined by Uncle Merriam-Webster in point 14 (an informal usage: elegance, grace, or dignity, as in dress and behavior). Ron B particularly objects to the extensive use-by-extension of classy, classless, and lacking class. He also cautions that sarcastic use of this term and/or prefacing the term with the adverb ‘totally’ could result in heavy fines or even criminal charges.

At Beemsville, we’re in complete agreement. What does elegance, grace, or dignity, as in dress and behavior really have to do with popular sporting events–with basketball or football or soccer, with the fans, coaches, and players… Not much, nor should it. In fact, we would argue that the term classy should heretofore be reserved for Ron B and for certain black-and-white movies, when referring to ‘dames’.


Do you want [insert your favorite team here] to exhibit class or do you want them to play hard and win? It’s a simple question, brought to the fore by the big sports rivalries we were able to view last week.

Illinois vs. Indiana in basketball: a big deal in our area. Illini Guard Chester Frazier received quite a lot of pub for a shoulder-chest bump laid on Hoosier Guard What’s-His-Name during the pre-game intros. One sports blogger described it as “completely classless and totally awesome” (oh, yes–Leitch will be fined…). Then there was the whole issue of class (or lack thereof) in terms of fan behavior–which included incessant booing, cursing, and yes, thrown ice or beads at What’s-His-Name’s parents. As the various regional and national journos piled-on Illini nation for their collective behavior, negative and sarcastic use of the word class was rampant, hitting a fever pitch*.

Here at Beemsville, where we’ve followed this latest chapter in the Illinois-Indiana rivalry quite closely, our official (albeit biased) opinion is thus: Any behavior short of a felony directed at IU Coach Kelvin Sampson, What’s-His-Name, and family, is completely justified and acceptable. We only ask that you consider terms other than class to describe this whole affair. How about terms like poor sportsmanship, bitterness, asshole, karma, and sanctions–yeah, those could work…

Then you have U.S.-Mexico in soccer, where classless behavior has seemed like the defining trait of our southern neighbors in recent years. But surprisingly, that didn’t happen last Wednesday. We witnessed a dearth of pre-game smack-talk and in-game cheap-shots, and afterward the two side even exchanged shirts for the first time in recent memory. The fact that the result was a well-played 2-2 tie probably didn’t hurt.

Soccer as a sport notriously overuses the term, class (especially British announcers and Americans trying to sound like Brits) when describing everything from first touch to passes to goals. Someone please send the memo to London and MLS HQ–find some new cliches. Even “booyah” and “taking it to the house” have been phased out of other sports…

As an alternative, we submit all a term gleaned from the aforementioned U.S.-Mex rivalry. That term is ardido. Yes, we all know red-blooded ‘Mericans don’t take kindly to foreign terminology, but check this out: Ardido, near as we can tell, means pride, defiance, anger, and acting like a prick. El Tri has used this term to justify their antics for years.

Try it, you might like it. The Illini-Hoosier rivalry–from the illegal phone calls to Chester’s chest-bump to the unapologetic f-bombs–just smacks of ardido. No word yet from Ron Burgundy on this, but we’ll be sure to pass along his thoughts. Until then…

*with apologies to Nick Hornby

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5 thoughts on “Ron B wants his catchphrase back

  1. Anytime Kelvin Sampson is involved, class goes out the window. Most of the people that objected to Illinois’ fans alleged “classlessness” exhibited during that game are the same ones that justified Sampson’s unethical recruiting tactics.

    Whatever class existed in this situation went by the boards when Sampson decided to start undermining Gordon’s verbal committment to Illinois. Why didn’t more people condemn his behavior? He’s supposed to be an adult, not some stupid college kid. Even if it wasn’t technically illegal, Sampson’s actions certainly could have been described as unethical or “unclassy”.

    Long story short, Sampson and the word “class” will never go together in any situation. Just ask Oklahoma. Illinois won’t be the last team his slimy ass scorns.

  2. OK-I’m going to take an opposite view-just for fun-so Kelvin Sampson is a cheating a-hole and what’s his name dealt the Illini nation and Coach Weber a very low blow- do bad deeds justify more bad deeds? do two wrongs equal a right? I have no problem with the fans booing what’s his name and the IU coach-and I don’t think Chester’s bump on what’s his name was any big deal either– but I don’t think profanities and throwing things at his parents is OK- and ardido can result in violence pretty easily- as has been seen often in SOCCER- is that OK???–when people die because of people’s ardido regarding a GAME??? I know it probably has to do with my age and how values have changed- but if I had been at the game – as some of my friends were with young children in tow, I would not have enjoyed them being exposed to F-you chants and watching fans throw things- I don’t think we should lose sight of the example we set- and I stand by my belief that Two Wrongs do not make a RIGHT- bad behavior is bad behavior regardless of whether you use the word class- or ardido!!

  3. If you brought your young kids to this year’s UofI-IU game and were offended you either weren’t paying attention or you’re dumb. I’m just glad no one was hurt.

    In life, two wrongs don’t make a right; but this is sports were talking about, where two wrongs are a necessity.

  4. Cellvin Scamscum, is the poster boy for what is wrong with college sports today. A person given that much power mixed with the pressure brought to bare on a person to succeed can make people do things they otherwise wouldn’t. That said after reading posts on the IB and other places and getting some first hand accounts of what transpired at the game from some customer who are in Orange Crush, all I can say is that its a good damn thing this didn’t happen when we were in school. Gordon’s day began the entire spectacle by flipping of the OC and then telling them all to F-Off when they began booing is son. To compound matters Gordon Sr. actually threatened to walk down from his seat and beat somebody up in OC? What the hell…. All that said, the IU coach whose name I will never utter again, may end up getting the Tarkanian ban or at least the manditory 7 year Harrik Hiatus. The NCAA opened up the investigation, which of course prompted IU to begin their own internal one. The NCAA knows that the 5 Major Violations are only the tip of the iceberg, but can’t prove anything more without help from IU. That said what are the chances they get it??? Rube says slim and none and slim is heading out of town with the coach!!!

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