GIVE ME FIVE BEES FOR A QUARTER  12:06 pm March 26, 2009

David Broder Spends Entire Week Filling Out March Madness Bracket

by Jim Newell

We had not read a column by David Broder, “The Duchess” of the Washington press corps, since at least 1943 (“Buy War Bonds, You Chuckleheads” was the topic at the time), but a tipster told us that it was funny today and yeah, it’s very funny today. It is just benign mumbling about basketball and vacations and his hometown with a few perfunctory Obama references for good measure. Yeah.

With the usual phoned-in old white male Beltway insider hack deathly newspapery title of “Mr. Cool’s March Madness,” Broder… oh what the fuck, are we actually going to bother making criticisms of David Broder at this point? Eh. Just let him talk about why he didn’t write a column last week, as you all surely noticed.

I took the week off to focus on filling out my brackets for the NCAA men’s basketball tournament. I have never done particularly well at doping out this tournament, but last year was particularly poor — even though the four No. 1′s all proved that the seeding was right.

No but really, he’s serious.

This year I was determined not to lose my focus, so I shut down reporting for the full week leading into the first-round games last Thursday and Friday.

Even retirement communities ridden with shrieking dementia-suffering banshees, the permanent wheelchair-bound people, the involuntary spitters and pissers whom the night staff eventually pushes into the artificial lake after being referred to as “colored” one too many times, even they would laugh at how old and slow David Broder is.

The bad news is that it wasn’t distraction that explained my sorry performance in the NCAA pool. I just can’t judge basketball. This year, 20 of my 32 first-round picks lost — almost as bad as the 21-11 negative score I had in 2008. Some of it can be blamed on sentiment. I went with American University because I drive through its Washington campus almost every week, and I picked five Big Ten teams because they were my boyhood favorites, even though experts had pronounced this an off-year for everyone except Michigan State and Purdue.

Just a great column here. Guy spends a whole week away from his job so as to focus on picking 32 basketball games, then he ends up deciding based on whether he drives through a particular college regularly (HE DRIVES!) or whether that college was in his childhood’s favorite conference — again, not favorite individual team, but favorite conference, the whole thing, he loved them all, rivalries or not…

But that’s okay. It must be nice to have that kind of job security, though.

Mr. Cool’s March Madness [WP]

 
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{ 46 comments }

Dave J. March 26, 2009 at 12:09 pm

I picked five Big Ten teams because they were my boyhood favorites, even though experts had pronounced this an off-year for everyone except Michigan State and Purdue.

If there’s anything I’ve learned from watching college sports over the last five years, it is this: ALWAYS beg against the Big Ten. Always.

Mr Blifil March 26, 2009 at 12:10 pm

“Some of it can be blamed on sentiment.”

The rest of it can be blamed on douchebaginess.

Dave J. March 26, 2009 at 12:10 pm

Or bet. Argh. Stupid typo.

Come here a minute March 26, 2009 at 12:11 pm

He was concentrating so hard he didn’t even realize he ate the whole onion off his belt.

ManchuCandidate March 26, 2009 at 12:11 pm

I hope I die before I get old and spend a week picking teams for my NCAA bracket.

Took me, a whole 50 seconds to pick’em.

I’ll go back to my corner now. Just don’t pay attention as I sob and mutter “Fucking Wake Forrest” under my breath.

Fivetree March 26, 2009 at 12:12 pm

Hopey filled his out in, like, 5 minutes on camera while ending the depression, stopping global warming and making Ed Henry his “companion”. Isn’t the damned thing almost over by now, anyway?

Formerly Preferred March 26, 2009 at 12:17 pm

In these tough economic times, any trimming of the fat should begin with employees that can take a week off to concentrate on filling out their brackets.

shanemacgowan March 26, 2009 at 12:18 pm

“Normally sane and laid-back people started cursing AIG as if they were Rahm Emanuel ripping John Boehner.”

I’m still waiting for a Rahm-level eruption. Everyone knows its coming. It can’t happen soon enough.

Mr Blifil March 26, 2009 at 12:20 pm

[re=273851]Fivetree[/re]: His brother-in-law is a Division I coach, so he obviously had his picks laid out in advance and put up on the TELEPROMPTRZ.

Lemming Caution March 26, 2009 at 12:20 pm

Broder on Obama’s comments during his Leno appearance:

“Who, in their right mind, when your company is going bust, decides we’re going to be paying a whole bunch of bonuses to people?” Obama exclaimed.

With that kind of encouragement from the president, the House quickly passed a patently unconstitutional bill retrospectively imposing a 90 percent tax on the top beneficiaries of the AIG bonuses.

Hadn’t the bill already passed earlier on Thursday, the same day Obama was on Leno?

hobospacejungle March 26, 2009 at 12:21 pm

I went with Hopey’s picks, so my bracket took no time at all. It also helps to not give a fuck about basketball, college or otherwise. The one exception being Purdue, for its athletic department paid for most of my higher education. Matt Painter FTW! Purdue Swimming #1 or thereabouts, probably top 7 or 8 FTW!

WadISay March 26, 2009 at 12:23 pm

Obama’s decision to skip the Gridiron Dinner is looking better by the minute.

TGY March 26, 2009 at 12:27 pm

[re=273860]shanemacgowan[/re]: Headlines: RAHM RIPS BONER. Or something. I realize, of course, that it’s pronounced BONE-head.

I dunno. Sports is dead to me. Do they play hoops in Hooverville?

Capitol Hillbilly March 26, 2009 at 12:28 pm

I just can’t figure out why nobody reads newspapers anymore.

Frampton Comes Alive March 26, 2009 at 12:29 pm

[re=273848]Come here a minute[/re]: Well, it was the style at the time….

willdude March 26, 2009 at 12:30 pm

“almost as bad as the 21-11 negative score”

When reading this phrase, you must mentally pronounce it “dickety-one and eleven”. Damn Kaiser.

queeraselvis v 2.0 March 26, 2009 at 12:32 pm

The sheer douchiness of this article is pretty astounding, especially for someone who took off a WHOLE DAMN WEEK to prepare. Also, I don’t think it’s coincidental that the week Broder took off in order to wank over the tourney bracket, the market catapulted up every single day.

In sum: buttsecks. And Memphis 20 over Mizzou. Also.

Josh Fruhlinger March 26, 2009 at 12:36 pm

Not only did he take a week off to do his NCAA tournament bracket, but then he used his bracket dickery as material for his column the following week. I will gladly accept the title “Duchess” if gets me this kind of workload.

TH42 March 26, 2009 at 12:37 pm

When Broder was a kid the Big Ten was the Big Two.

Hey-oh!

sanantonerose March 26, 2009 at 12:40 pm

[re=273848]Come here a minute[/re]: Bwah!

Vewol Mevemont March 26, 2009 at 12:43 pm

In a year with almost no upsets he goes 10 for 32? Is this man retarded?

AnnieGetYourFun March 26, 2009 at 12:46 pm

“Even retirement communities ridden with shrieking dementia-suffering banshees, the permanent wheelchair-bound people, the involuntary spitters and pissers whom the night staff eventually pushes into the artificial lake after being referred to as “colored” one too many times, even they would laugh at how old and slow David Broder is.”

Best. Paragraph. Ever.

Fivetree March 26, 2009 at 12:47 pm

[re=273862]Mr Blifil[/re]: And Ed Henry was laid out in advance like David Vitter in Kimbies.

snideinplainsight March 26, 2009 at 12:49 pm

Snark aside, I refuse to even open the WashPo website anymore. I am so looking forward to dancing on the grave that paper is laid in. I’d rather sniff McCain’s tweets than contribute clicks to a paper that goes out and hires Bill-effing-Kristol in 2009.

Lascauxcaveman March 26, 2009 at 12:53 pm

[re=273866]hobospacejungle[/re]: Let me see if I can cobble together the arc of your adult life from bits and pieces I remember from your many comments over the last few months here:

1) Be on the Purdue swim team
2) Become an unemployable junkie
3) Become a Wonkette commenter

And maybe project the future:

4) …?
5) Profit!

Texan Bulldoggette March 26, 2009 at 12:55 pm

Shit, if it took him a full week to decide on some crap that has no bearing whatsoever on his life, I bet the folks at Luby’s get really pissed at him. He probably holds the early bird line up so long, those other old folks end up eating at 6 p.m. instead of 4 p.m. (And they probably hate him because he makes them miss “Murder, She Wrote”.

Gin-o-saurus March 26, 2009 at 12:55 pm

“Next year, I swear I will do better.”

Please, lets be realistic Mr Broder. Chances are pretty good you will be dead.

norbizness March 26, 2009 at 12:59 pm

I’m not looking forward to Dean Broder’s next series of columns “It Hurts When I Pee,” “It’s Cold and I’m Confused,” and “Why Is It Blinking 12:00 am on My VCR?”

comradepaulson March 26, 2009 at 1:02 pm

[re=273848]Come here a minute[/re]: Does David Broder drive through American University screaming “MAAATTLOOOCKKK!” Yes, yes, he does.

Zadig March 26, 2009 at 1:16 pm

[re=273885]queeraselvis v 2.0[/re]: Hell yeah, Memphis. We’ve got presidential support for this one. I need to refill my fridge, so that I can empty it again, post-game.

Mr Blifil March 26, 2009 at 1:18 pm

[re=273932]norbizness[/re]: I think I could tolerate “My 4-Hour Erection, Why?”

twowheeljunkie March 26, 2009 at 1:24 pm

[re=273849]ManchuCandidate[/re]: Utah. Also

snideinplainsight March 26, 2009 at 1:25 pm

And you know, this is funny, because I was just wondering to myself, How DOES David Broder fill out his bracket?

I got up this morning, and, looking in the mirror, said to myself “I wonder how George Will selects his outfits?” Then again, over breakfast, I had the nagging thought “Gosh, I wonder how Richard Cohen chooses which cereal to eat?” Then again, sitting in my driveway, I felt a vexing question tugging at the corner of my awareness “How DOES Charles Krauthammer pick his radio station?” It’s just plum vexing, I tell you.

So this is timely. And very helpful. Now I know.

teebob2000 March 26, 2009 at 1:32 pm

>>HE DRIVES!

That was my first thought; then I realized it’s probably short-hand for “…my boy Rastus drives me…”

slithytoves March 26, 2009 at 1:40 pm

In ten seconds I picked out the first round and scored 30 out of 32. If I spent a couple more I might have done better, but I had real work to do.

Come here a minute March 26, 2009 at 1:42 pm

[re=273986]teebob2000[/re]: No, I think that like Novak he will keep driving until he smashes someone in a crosswalk, blame a brain tumor, and then (this is the worst part) remain alive.

norbizness March 26, 2009 at 2:03 pm

To be fair, certain basketball innovations, like the three-point line, the shot clock, black players, dribbling, and a net instead of a peach basket, have come along since Broder last paid attention.

Red Zeppelin March 26, 2009 at 2:06 pm

In the journalistic realm, the University of Chicago (my less than beloved alma mater) has a lot to answer for. Brooks + Broder = catatonic stupor. Plus, what the hell? Can you just write about anything if you have a column in the msm these days? And to think they look down their noses at hard-working bloggers!

Pat Pending March 26, 2009 at 2:09 pm

Brackets? What are these ‘brackets’ you people speak of? The only ones I know of look like this: {}

chascates March 26, 2009 at 2:52 pm

Broder believes that all the teams are reasonable people who have the country’s best interests at heart but simply disagree.

Capitol Hillbilly March 26, 2009 at 3:15 pm

Doesn’t the Washington Post have a nice retirement plan?

Sansabeltway March 26, 2009 at 3:28 pm

[re=273866]hobospacejungle[/re]: If you were ever an alpaca farmer, I think we were housemates.

Mr. Herpes March 26, 2009 at 3:33 pm

It’s sad when the greats are waaaaay past their prime. Broder used to be the Joe Friday of political columnists, nothing flashy, just the facts. And the obituary he wrote on Jesse Helms was a trumpet blast of truth, questioning why no one had the courage to remember Jesse as he really was — a cynical racist who pandered to the worst instincts of North Carolina voters. But maybe its time for the staff to hide the pen and paper and start telling Mr. Broder to go back to bed, he’s already written his column.

teebob2000 March 26, 2009 at 4:54 pm

[re=273909]Vewol Mevemont[/re]: He thought number 1′s were the LOWEST-ranked teams, and the 16′s were the HIGHEST-ranked teams. See how 16 is higher than 1?

Pop Socket March 26, 2009 at 8:14 pm

[re=274184]Capitol Hillbilly[/re]: And they’ve just announced a new buy-out package. Broder was just biding his time.

hobospacejungle March 26, 2009 at 9:52 pm

[re=273925]Lascauxcaveman[/re]: Let me see if I can cobble together the arc of your adult life from bits and pieces I remember from your many comments over the last few months here

I’ve said too much already! Get outta my brain! To correct (but you weren’t too far off:)

1) Be on the Purdue swim team
2) Marry a beautiful intelligent woman whose salary makes my continued employment pointless
3) Become househusband
4) Become a unemployable gainfully unemployed junkie
5) Get off the junk with beautiful wife’s loving assistance
6) Begin taking my meds again
7) Become a Wonkette commenter

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