Remember last year when angry old sportswriter Harry “Buzz” Bissinger endorsed Mitt Romney because Mittens was totally lying about everything? It was probably non-sports fans’ first introduction to the douchepile that is Buzz Bissinger, so here is a quick primer.
Back when the internet consisted of three Star Trek fans on a dial-up message board, Bissinger wrote a very good book about Texas high school football, which became a decent movie about Texas high school football, which inspired an incredible tv show about how Texas high school football teams only have to play well in the second half to win because of inspirational words. Bissinger has literally coasted on that book since the Soviet Union was still a thing.
More recently, Bissinger is basically known as the guy who yelled at Deadspin’s Will Leitch because Bissinger couldn’t understand the difference between blog posts and blog comments. He also wrote an insufferable book about St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa to refute the idea that Nate Silver-style gay math helps explain baseball. And, of course, there was that whole endorsing Mittens because he knew Mittens was a liar.
Tuesday we learned that Buzz Bissinger is a worse human being than anyone previously imagined.
Back when this Romney booster was complaining about poors not putting “skin in the game” because they don’t make enough money to pay federal income tax (though they do pay payroll taxes, excise taxes, sales taxes, and property taxes while struggling to eke out a living in an economy that’s seen record corporate profits and 30 years of real wage stagnation) he also purchased $600,000 on hideous poseur clothes.
If all I buy is Gucci, I will be fine. It has taken a while to figure out what works and what doesn’t work, but Gucci men’s clothing best represents who I want to be and have become—rocker, edgy, tight, bad boy, hip, stylish, flamboyant, unafraid, raging against the conformity that submerges us into boredom and blandness and the sexless saggy sackcloths that most men walk around in like zombies without the cinematic excitement of engorging flesh.
I own eighty-one leather jackets, seventy-five pairs of boots, forty-one pairs of leather pants, thirty-two pairs of haute couture jeans, ten evening jackets, and 115 pairs of leather gloves. Those who conclude from this that I have a leather fetish, an extreme leather fetish, get a grand prize of zero. And those who are familiar with my choices will sign affidavits attesting to the fact that I wear leather every day. The self-expression feels glorious, an indispensable part of me. As a stranger said after admiring my look in a Gucci burgundy jacquard velvet jacket and a Burberry black patent leather trench, “You don’t give a fuck.”
Yr Wonket would have to write 60,000 posts to afford that much awfulness. He still would prefer khaki Dockers. Because he is a zombie. What kind of grown-up defines self-expression with overpriced, mass-produced articles of clothing designed by someone else? To quote Daria: “Sometimes your shallowness is so thorough, it’s almost like depth.”
It’s not just that Bissinger became the guy from Cake’s Rock’N'Roll Lifestyle, or that he’s indignant because Obama wants to raise his taxes to fund higher education, build roads, help veterans overcome post-traumatic stress syndrome, etc., and therefore make it harder for Buzz to buy a 33rd pair of “haute couture” jeans. What really makes him terrible is that his support for the virulently anti-gay rights Mitt Romney-Paul Ryan ticket came in the midst of his midlife crisis orgy of pansexual exploration. Gay sex, BDSM, Asian sex clubs, Buzz Bissinger was doing anything and everyone.
And that’s cool. Yr Wonket, indeed all Wonkets are unquestioning supporters of every adult’s right to sexual autonomy and exploration. At the same time, when exploring your sexuality, you should take special care not give aid and comfort to those who would deny sexual liberty to people lacking the freedoms of a privileged, upper-class life. This is especially true if, like Buzz Bissinger, you explore your sexuality in cliched rich white guy ways, like going to foreign sex clubs or humping other dudes while claiming you’re not gay or bisexual because humping dudes is “not [your] sexual being.”
Fuck you, Buzz. Seriously. Fuck you. Not only should people like you pay higher marginal tax rates, your taxes should be double what other rich guys pay because you’re a narcissistic, hypocritical shitstain of a human being.