Listen, I know that a LOT of people listen to Radiohead. They are actually considered to be Gods, I’m pretty sure. But I’ve just never enjoyed listening to them. It may have something to do with the fact that the first time I heard them I was unbelievably drunk and stoned and the video for Paranoid Android came on, (you know, the cartoon dude who chops his arms off) and it completely freaked me out. But not only did it freak me out it also was the last thing I remember before I started praying to the porcelain gods. And it was one of those REALLY bad nights, I think maybe it was my birthday or something. And when you get that sick you have a tendency to associate it with something. Well for me that something is Radiohead. So, just to clarify, I’m not a Radiohead fan, but I don’t dislike them for any real reason. To me they are like Pearl Jam or even The Rolling Stones. I’ll listen to them if someone else plays one of their songs, and I’ll even admit that it’s pretty good, but they just don’t do it for me.
But what I’ve noticed lately is that anyone who wants to sound like they know music at all will try to associate their listening tastes with Radiohead. Like, just the fact that they listen to Radiohead makes them cool for some reason. And I’ve gotta say, this is now my new reason for not liking Radiohead. I feel like I’ve had this conversation many, many times and it always goes something like:
Whoever: “Hey, so what’s your favorite band?”
Me: “Well I really like The Police, and Nirvana, and lately I’m sorta into Death Cab.”
Whoever: “What? What about Radiohead? Of course you like them, right?”
Me: “Um, no. Not too much really. I would have definitely mentioned them if I liked them.”
Whoever: “But they are like the only REAL band out there. Maybe ever. They are real musicians.”
Me: “People always said Phish were real musicians. You a big phan of them too?”
Whoever: “Uh, they’re alright. I guess. But Radiohead, they are the best. You just don’t like good music.”
That conversation probably ends badly. And it may be a little bit of an exaggeration. (That ‘whoever’ guys sounds in my head like the dude who plays Earl’s friend in My Name Is Earl, and he was also the sailboat guy in Mallrats.) I don’t think I’m exaggerating all that much though, and I have to assume you’ve met people like that too. They’re everywhere lately. How do I know this? Well, by everywhere I mean the Disney Channel, and more specifically little Miley Cyrus, who refers to them as her Rock Gods. Seriously? WTF is that about? This Radiohead thing has officially gone too far when Hannah Montana is acting like she likes them just so she can look cool.
I feel like there may be an analogy to fantasy baseball here, but more than anything I really wanted to get that off my chest. Oh, I know what it was. To me, all of the fantasy sites that try to tell you exactly how to draft your team, they are all like Radiohead fans to me. One guy on one site will be telling you not to pay for saves, and someone else will tell you to ignore steals. Or even crazier, you may get someone to advise you to never worry about pitching at all and spend all of your budget on power hitters. They all apparently know better than you. But guess what, they don’t have to listen to that crap, er, I mean, they don’t have to manage your team. You do. And while seeking advice is always a very prudent thing to do, you should never feel swindled into any one set of parameters for how to build your team. If you want to have all elite closers because they won’t kill your ERA and WHIP, then pay for them. If you want to have speedy steals guys with the potential to score a lot of runs and hit for a high average, then draft them. If you want to build the most awesomest pitching staff ever assembled just because you really enjoy watching great pitching, then more power to you. And nobody should tell you otherwise.
Fantasy baseball, first and foremost, should be an extension of being a baseball fan. Don’t get so caught up in “winning your money league” that you lose sight of that. If you’ve watched a guy play and you feel like he’s poised for a breakout season, but the experts don’t agree, I say screw ’em! You spend as much as it takes to get that guy on your team, then you go out and buy his jersey, and sit back all season and just root for him. Like a real fan is supposed to. Dammit.
I feel like I may be starting to sound like James Earl Jones here, but then again I like to pretend that I always sound like James Earl Jones when I’m trying to make a point. It reminds me of all that once was good and it could be again. Just like a good Radiohead song.