When we last left jacked-up coffee crusader, Peter King, he was having his idyllic vacation with spring training baseball tragically interrupted by the duties of his incredibly awesome, high-paying job. He explained how Peyton Manning no longer needs a working arm to exploit defenses. He also made the mistake of thinking anyone might be interested in Donovan McNabb.

So what about this week? Peter King had no way of knowing that the Peyton Manning signing would break mere hours after his column went live, because PK knows nothing. Nor did I, as the news arrived while I was in the process of tearing the column to shreds. It helps if you remember that the mockery is of the perspective of those heady pre-Manning-to-the-Broncos moments, before the free agency period that Peter King both over-covers and says is over-covered was forever changed. READ ON.

Well, Peyton Manning’s doing a terrific job of not telegraphing his intentions.

It’s the dummy snap count of career decisions. When he spies Adam Schefter cheating up to the line, Peyton sends a Broncos team jet in motion to a college football field for warmups. If media anticipates the flight path, he has it grounded on the spot. Total smokescreen.

And because we don’t know his landing spot — Denver, San Francisco or Tennessee (in alphabetical order, because believe me, I don’t know)

Peter’s doing a terrific job of not telegraphing what he knows, because, per usual, he doesn’t know shit.

a ripple effect was felt Sunday from the Pacific Northwest to the Atlantic Southeast.

FETUSQUAKE!!

One top official from one of the three teams told me Sunday night his team hadn’t heard from Manning all day Sunday and, in his words, “We don’t know if we’re in or out. He told us he’d call when he knew what he was going to do, and we’re taking him at his word. No pressure.”

“Why hasn’t he callllllllled me? I knew I shouldn’t have offered the future GM job on the first date. Now he thinks I’m easy. Is he doing the ‘wait three days to call’ thing? Why do QBs do that? GAWD. So stupid. You think he got scared off ’cause I’m too hairy down there?”

I had one smart football official tell me Sunday Manning’s going to San Francisco, and another tell me he’s going to Tennessee and a third tell me: “His brain tells him San Francisco. His heart tells him Denver.”

Haha, Tennessee, you have to settle for the backing of Peyton’s gall bladder.

So, folks, we’re all guessing here. So let’s not guess.

I give PK no more than five paragraphs before he ventures yet another wild guess about Peyton.

Let’s just say if all things were created equal

Or let’s not because they aren’t. Instead of guessing, you’re creating hypothetical situations, which is even more useless.

he’d probably rather go to the AFC, because that would take him away from playoff competition with his beloved brother Eli until the Super Bowl and because the AFC doesn’t have as many good teams at the top as the NFC this year, from the looks of it. But all three contending teams have logic on their side.

That’s good, because Peyton yearns for logic. He tires of franchises governed by the old ways of superstition and witchcraft. Peyton Manning seeks to usher in an Age of Reason in the NFL. Part of that is reshaping the popular belief that the Earth, rather than being the center of the universe, orbits Pey-Pey’s giant noggin.

Tennessee is in the division he knows intimately, and he loves familiarity.

More accurately, he fears the different. Because Peyton has OCD. Helps to explain the manifold tics and motions at the line of scrimmage.

He could win at any of the three places. He’d win biggest in San Francisco, most likely. So there you go.

San Francisco would embiggen Peyton’s logical winniness, so they PK’s non-guessical guess.

So I’m assuming he had some significant family time over the weekend as he mulled over what to do. But that’s an assumption.

Just so we’re clear on this, that’s a clarification.

And make no mistake about this: The circle of information and influence is very small here. It may be a circle of one. Notice the lack of leaks over the weekend? There’s a reason for that. Manning wants to control everything about this. And if the teams want to be involved, they have to play the game.

SI Editor: “Peter, have you heard anything useful about Peyton’s plans over the weekend?”

Peter: “Well, I assume no one has. That’s an assumption. I also assume Peyton isn’t sharing anything with anyone, not his agent, not his family, not the teams he’s meeting with. No one. He’s a Battleship of one. Otherwise, he’d be returning my voicemails. And he isn’t. That’s a fact. The voicemail part, that is. The rest is bullshit.”

SI Editor: “Why do I bother?”

Peter: “I can let you in on one secret: there’s a bar in Manhattan with Allagash White on tap. Do with that what you will.”

While Manning mulls, here’s my read on who, and what, is being swept up in this story that may have 48 hours yet to wash over us all:

FETUSWAVE!!!

Alex Smith. Sure seems like a jilted quarterback to me.

Alex Smith cuts Peyton’s face out of magazines. He creates a fake Twitter account to spread false rumors about him. Alex Smith cries alone in his room to Kenny Chesney albums, which isn’t irregular for Alex Smith, but more intense now.

How many times has coach Jim Harbaugh staunchly defended this criticism magnet over the past 14 months? Daily, it seems. They’re so tight Smith caddied for Harbaugh at the AT&T golf tournament last month

“I love him so much I let him carry shit around for me!”

Sunday night, Mike Klis of the Denver Post reported Miami was negotiating to try to bring Smith to terms before Manning made his call. Stay tuned.

BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Alex Smith to Davone Bess, y’all!

Oh, Miami. You truly are the best.

Jeff Ireland. In the history of NFL general managers, Ireland is on the coldest streak ever. He needs to do something right. He doesn’t even need to hit a home run. A seeing-eye single would do. That may make him more aggressive on Smith today — and it may make Smith more inclined to go somewhere I don’t think he really wants to go.

If we’re doing clumsy baseball metaphors, then a panicked contract offer to Alex Smith is like grounding into a 27-out play.

Would Smith rather rub it in 49er GM Trent Baalke’s face and run off to a bad team, and would he rather pray for Manning to pick Tennessee or Denver, enabling Smith to go back to where he has the best chance by far of making a Super Bowl run?

Yes. Let’s not hazard guesses about Peyton Manning when it’s much more INTERESTING to do so with Alex Smith.

Josh Johnson. Colin Kaepernick. But now, with the Dolphins in contention to sign San Francisco’s starting quarterback, the Niners have to realistically think of life without Smith. Don’t be surprised if the Niners, if suddenly desperate, take a shot at playing at least a bridge season with Johnson.

Oh, that’s fantastic. I hope he picks anyone but the Niners now.

UPDATE: BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Mike Wallace. In the category of “remember where you heard this one,” if the Niners save $8 million a year by not signing Smith and by paying Johnson a low 2012 cap number, I believe they’d consider making a offer for Pittsburgh’s restricted free agent.

There goes PK, trying to make sure he’s properly credited for his lone nugget of the week. In the category of “ya betta recognize” PK is putting the message out.

Also, it’s highly depressing to see how much Petey dictates the NFL media cycle on a Monday. Follow enough reporters and you see a distressing amount run with his flimsy, equivocating sourcing as something worthwhile.


This is a longshot, but don’t be stunned to see it happen — if Manning jilts San Francisco and Smith runs off too.

In the category of “this won’t happen but if it does, it was all ME ME ME” PK stands alone. Okay, he stands with Florio, who also loves engaging in said dipshittery.

Randy Moss. At 35, does he have anything left? At 32, he caught 83 balls for 1,264 yards and 13 touchdowns. He’d likely be significantly jacked up to catch balls from Manning after catching them from another all-timer, Tom Brady, for three-plus years. More jacked up, I’d imagine, than catching balls from Josh Johnson.

“Randy, what is the level of which you are jacked?”

“It’s a pretty level jacking. Neither up nor down. I’ve hit a jack plateau.”

“You don’t really speak like that, Randy, do you?”

“Sure don’t. That’s okay, though. Because what you said made no fucking sense.”

Matt Hasselbeck. If Manning picks Tennessee, Hasselbeck could be a bridge quarterback in Cleveland or San Francisco.

Bridge quarterback throwing to bridge trolls. Also, quit trying to sell me on the awesome chance of Josh Johnson being the Niners starter for a year if they’re jusy gonna end up signing Hasselbeck.

The Broncos. Seemed like the ballgame was theirs to lose six days ago. Cold and hot doesn’t matter here, so who knows? Manning may be just making sure he’s made the right choice — or he might be seeing some zits the further away from the Broncos he gets.

That’s not how one usually spots zits. Or is that a sneaky way of reporting that Peyton has developed far-sightedness? REMEMBER WHERE YOU HEARD THIS ONE!

Tim Tebow. If Manning picks Denver, I’d be the only person alive who’d think Denver shouldn’t trade Tebow; I’d love to see him be the jack-of-all-trades runner-receiver-very occasional thrower who’d keep defenses honest.

Peter has spent the last two years staunching defending Tebow as a conventional quarterback. Now, all of a sudden, Peyton enters the equation and PK is ready to demote the Runslinger to early career Kordell Stewart 2.0 status, which is probably what Tebow should have been all along anyway, but it’s still annoying that it takes Peyton fluffing to get King to that point.

But this would be the chance for Elway to get something for Tebow. Question is, would it be foolish to dump him for, say, a fifth-round pick? I think it would be. I’d keep him unless I could get a third- or higher.

I’m sure some retarded team would be willing to fork over a 3rd for Tebow, sadly enough. Nevertheless, GUESSATHON 2K12 MARCHES ON, MORE JACKED UP THAN EVER!

Matt Flynn. Before the Manning derby began, Flynn said, “It’s pretty strange that Peyton Manning’s going to affect me at all. Amazing, really.”

Sorry, Seattle, your new quarterback is an idiot. At least he might be able to make consistent lattes.

Scott Wells. Tennessee was very interested in the free agent Green Bay center. But because they have to wait for Manning to decide and couldn’t afford Wells’ $24 million, four-year pricetag, the Titans passed and the Rams signed him. That’s one of the hidden fees of going all-in for Manning. You have to wait for him, and while you wait, some players you want come off the market.

And then there are the Bank of Peyton hidden fees. Did you know he charges you $5 anytime you use an out of network ATM to take out your money. Any transaction above the cap? BAM! $35 fee.

The bad news around the NFL. Jim McMahon had a powerful interview on ESPN Sunday regarding the head injuries he suffered during his career. Ignored. The Saints bounty story and looming discipline? Ignored. Dallas and Washington angry about their salary-cap penalties on the eve of free agency? Ignored. Peyton Manning can even make the bad news go away — for a while anyway.

Classic CYA move by PK. So long as he tucks one or two terse paragraphs about a more meaningful story into discussion of the same stories that everyone else is beating to death, he gets to feel better about himself and PEYTON GUESSATHON CAN CONTINUE UNABATED.

Matt Flynn’s deal is smart for both sides.

The three-year contract with Seattle will give him the edge in training-camp competition with Tarvaris Jackson, but not a late-July lock on the job.

Yeah, it should give him a lock on the job right now. Tarvaris fucking blows.

It’ll be interesting. Jackson will have the better arm, Flynn the better accuracy. And it may take time because Jackson knows the players and the plays better, obviously, than Flynn. But Flynn’s strength is quickly transferring the tenets of every-second-counts quarterback play (what he learned during the week about individual players on defense, how to beat what the defense is showing him, how to know what play to check to when he has to audible), and you’d think that would show up in time.

Wait, is PK actually talking about this like Tarvaris has a shot at winning this job? Kill me now.

Free agency: The idiotic part.

This is possibly the most over-covered week of anything we do in writing about the league, this first week of free agency.

UH OH. Someone’s still a little testy about having his dream vacation in Spring Trainingville cut short to deal with irksome football matters. WAAAAAHHHHHHH FREE AGENCY IS SOOOOOO BORING EXCEPT THIS AWESOMELY FASCINATING DRAMA WITH PEYTON MANNING I JUST SPENT A THOUSAND WORDS OBSESSING OVER

I knew it had gotten totally out of control on Saturday when Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News tweeted: “Amazingly, I’m sensing angst among some Giants fans again about Jerry Reese’s lack of offseason action.”

Because Giants fans are fucking greasetards.

Reese is the general manager of the New York Giants. He has had the job five years. He is notoriously slow off the draw in free agency, and he is not alone. In recent years, noted GMs and personnel czars like Ted Thompson (Green Bay), Mickey Loomis (New Orleans), Kevin Colbert (Pittsburgh) and Bill Polian (Indianapolis) have let the free agency field settle down before going after players of moderate cost. In the last six seasons, those franchise architects — Reese, Thompson, Loomis, Colbert, Polian — have won every Super Bowl. Not saying the patient way is the only way to team-build, but come on. Reese did nothing big in 2007 and 2011 and won the Super Bowl both times.

Another year of close competition in the DOING IT THE RIGHT WAY Bowl. NFL reporters will apparently splooge all over your face if you don’t sign any free agents, unless you’re Jeff Ireland, in which case YOU ARE FUCKING TOAST.

Free agency: The smart part.

As a thing we over-cover, the smart part of free agency is INTERESTING.

First, the Mario Williams signing was no reprise of the Reggie White free agency bonanza in 1993, the first year of free agency. Though I might argue that Williams is the second-best defensive free agent ever, he’s not a fair match to White. When White went from Philadelphia to Green Bay, he was 31 and he’d had 124 sacks in 121 career games. Williams is 27. He’s played 82 games — and had 53 sacks. A nice player, the best pass-rusher by far on the market this year, and one of the best rushers ever on the market. But White? No.

Who the fuck was comparing Mario Williams to Reggie White? And what’s this about being the second-best defensive free agent ever? Shit, Nnamdi was probably a bigger one just last year.

“The next day, he wanted to see the area. This kid likes open space. We took him to Jim Kelly’s home, and Jim and his wife, Jill, have been wonderful to our team over the years. Mario loved it. He wanted country, like what Jim’s got — woods, wildlife, a big lot. When we were leaving Jim’s neighborhood, Mario saw a big house with no sign in front of it and said, ‘That house is for sale.’ I don’t know how he knew it, but he did.

Lemme guess – it’s an expensive house near Buffalo. Jim Kelly is the only other person who would own one.

“If I’m not mistaken,” Williams said, not angrily but stridently, “this team beat New England last year. This team almost beat the Giants. This is an any-given-Sunday league. I don’t buy that we can’t win. This is the NFL. New teams win every year. If that wasn’t the case, teams in the big cities, the better cities, would win all the time. And you see that’s not true.”

I like the part where Mario Williams mentions that there are a lot better cities than Buffalo. Oh, and the Bills lost eight of their last nine games in 2011.

Maybe Williams will be in a sinkhole. But I think if the interior defensive line stays healthy, Buffalo finally has a chance to be competitive enough on defense to play good offenses head-to-head.

“Williams could be a huge bust that regrets ever setting foot in this backwater pisstown, but if conditions are just right, the Bills will be able to play teams close.”

In the immortal words of Vince Lombardi (sort of)

KINDA-LOMBARDI-ESQUE

“What the hell’s going on down there?!”

In the last 10 years this Dolphins franchise has been the most luckless, clueless, hapless club. To wit:

The Browns would like a word.

The most bizarre moves, and aftermaths, of the last decade of Miami Dolphins football — actually, decade plus 11 days, considering that the Dolphins traded for Ricky Williams 10 years and 11 days ago:

PK goes on to rehash all the Miami second round picks (either traded or drafted) used on Chad Henne, A.J. Feeley, Daunte Culpepper and John Beck, the team choosing Cam Cameron as head coach over Mike Tomlin, letting Wes Welker walk in free agency to a division rival, and of course the going with Daunte Culpepper over Drew Brees debacle. It’s all a rich tapestry of fucking up.

One piece of clarification.

The other day, Browns president Mike Holmgren inferred strongly to his season ticket holders in a conference call that he felt the trade St. Louis made with Washington was influenced by the relationship between the two coaches involved — good friend Mike Shanahan of the Redskins and Jeff Fisher of the Rams. What Holmgren said: “What we had offered for the pick was every bit the offer that was chosen. There are reasons I can’t go into right now why it didn’t happen, but there’s a very close relationship between the people that were involved in getting the deal done, and the people eventually got it done. I’m not sure if any offer we made at the end of the day was going to be quite good enough.”

But according to Rams GM Les Snead, that’s not the whole story.

Mike Holmgren publicly whining and carrying on like an asshole when things don’t work out for him? Why, that never happens, except for always.

Coming in Tuesday’s column (barring a Manning decision or other big news): A one-week review of free agency hits and misses.

Over-coverage, Peter King has it.

Seriously, how do you plug that not a full page after going off on a tirade about how stupid free agency reporting is? This man is a monster.

Quote of the Week I

“I think he has his stuff together better than 90 percent of this room.”

— Chicago quarterback Jay Cutler on new Bears wideout Brandon Marshall, to the news media, at the news conference introducing Marshall to Chicago.

The lengths athletes will go just to stick up for each other.

Cutler being a defensive sulk twat, but it’s directed at the media, so I’m cool with it.

Quote of the Week III

“Short-term memory is not good. I won’t remember a hell of a lot about this interview in 10 minutes.”

— Former Bears quarterback Jim McMahon, one of scores of players suing the NFL for brain trauma they say was suffered on NFL fields, in an interview with ESPN’s Outside the Lines program on Sunday.

BUT HOW DOES THIS AFFECT PEYTON’S LIKELY DESTINATION?! HOW WILL DENVER HAVE LOGIC IF ELWAY REMEMBERS NOTHING!?

Stat of the Week

The beneficiary of the first real free agency period in two seasons: the backup quarterback. Three (Kyle Orton, Chad Henne, Charlie Whitehurst) signed deals for at least $4 million a year in the first four days of free agency.

I’m amazed that the Dallas Cowboys paid Orton — who I consider the best of the available backups, and not by a small amount — a $5 million signing bonus for a five-year deal that will likely void to three years.

Holy shit, did you not see how many starting quarterbacks got injured last season? Of course, you did, because you used it as evidence about how dangerous the games is and what lengths the league should go to further protect its players.

I understand sleeping better at night, which the Cowboys will do now that they have maybe the best backup quarterback in football as insurance for Tony Romo instead of the iffy Stephen McGee. But I’ve never heard of paying a guy you hope will never play a $5 million signing bonus.

You hope he never plays, but assume he will at some point, because Romo gets hurt with some regularity, as do a lot of starting QBs. Not having a decent backup can pretty torpedo your entire season if the starter goes down. YOU FUCKING SHAT ON BILL POLIAN FOR NOT HAVING ANYONE BETTER THAN CURTIS PAINTER IN PLACE BEHIND PEYTON! HOW ARE YOU SO FUCKING OBTUSE!? GAAAAAHHHHHHH

Factoid of the Week That May Interest Only Me

How much did Brady Quinn want out of the Denver quarterback-go-round? So much, I hear, that he turned down an offer of $2 million from the Broncos and accepted a one-year, $1.5 million deal in Kansas City.

Not to mention to again play for the coach who kept him buried on the bench in Cleveland. Not that anyone gives a shit about Brady Quinn, but if they did, that’d be a burn.

Mr. Starwood Preferred Member Travel Note of the Week

I didn’t travel anywhere in the past seven days, but I did have a bit of an odd New York experience. Saturday was the first St. Patrick’s Day I have experienced as a Manhattan resident. I just figured, OK, big St. Patty’s parade up Fifth Avenue, lots of people, everybody in green, whatever.

Thanks. We get how the holiday works.

No. It looked bigger than New Year’s Eve, at least from what I saw. Walking down Second Avenue on the east side of town around 3 in the afternoon with Bailey the dog, I found the sidewalks so clogged with revelers (22ish, from the looks of it) that we had to walk in the street for a couple of blocks … then cut back over to First Avenue so the drunk kids would stop tripping over Bailey. I thought, This must be something like Mardi Gras.

MARDI GO BRAGH

On Sunday morning, when Bailey and I went out for her morning spin through the neighborhood (and you know how dogs are — they like to eat whatever their tongues can scrape off the sidewalk), I had to, in the span of six blocks, tug her past three areas of, shall we say, human sickness. Aaah, the benefits of living in the center of the universe.

OH DEAR! Grime and filth in New York City. THE VERY IDEA! However did we allow these messy revelers to despoil our otherwise pristine metropolis? By the way, didn’t PK used to live in Boston? Now there’s a city that knows how to keep a lid on its St. Patrick’s Day carousing.

Tweet of the Week I

“I am on flight right now (red eye) from San Francisco to Miami — QB Alex Smith is sitting in first class — you connect the dots.”

— @DavisHsuSeattle, realtor and Seahawks blogger Davis Hsu, who broke the Smith-to-Miami-for-a-visit story in the middle of the night on a Virgin America redeye from San Francisco to Florida. From row 14, apparently — with Smith sleeping in row one.

Haphazard blogger nuggets. PK is just pissed that he doesn’t get to break more news on cross country flights. In the category of “Remember to keep the melted Kit-Kats coming, stewardess.”

Tweet of the Week II

“Icing my shoulder from continuous fist pumping.”

— @kirkmorrison, the Buffalo linebacker, Thursday afternoon, after it was announced Mario Williams would be signing with the Bills.

Goodell is quick to note that fist-pumping related injuries are the true scourge of the NFL and the league does it best to discourage the practice, but players just don’t listen.

Ten Things I Think I Think

1. I think I still don’t understand Reggie Wayne’s rush to re-sign with Indianapolis, unless he was sure the new Peyton Manning team wouldn’t want him. And when he signed last week, there was no way to know which team that was going to be.

Wayne said it was ultimately between the Colts and the Patriots. So much for being Pey-Pey’s lapdog. After everyone basically blamed Wayne for losing the Super Bowl for running a bad route, I can’t blame the guy for wanting to get away from the Peyton fluffing.

2. I think now we know why Jeff Fisher was anxious to leave Tennessee 14 months ago. He didn’t want the owner of the team calling up and dictating something so important as who to pursue at quarterback. Sort of like he did in 2006, when he pushed for Vince Young to be the team’s first-round pick. Not to say it’s a bad idea to try to get Peyton Manning; if the Titans get him, Adams will be the hero of Tennessee. But it’s the principle of it — coaches and GMs don’t like the owner walking into their side of the building and dictating what to do.

So Jeff Fisher somehow knew before any of Peyton’s injuries surfaced that he’d be an available as a free agent in early 2012. With that kind of foresight, you’d think he’d have won a Super Bowl by now or something.

4. I think it sounds like Roger Goodell’s discipline on the Saints bounty case is going to ensnare players, coaches and the Saints organization in its net. Perceptive summary Q&A the other day by Don Banks on SI.com, and the impression I get now is that Sean Payton is likely to get multiple games, and more than one player will be sanctioned.

/bangs on table for lifetime bans
//troll

6. I think the neglected position so far in free agency — seemingly because teams think the position is relatively easily filled — is linebacker. That’s a sweeping generalization, but Tulloch, Curtis Lofton (24th on my top-50 list), London Fletcher (No. 43, but still a playmaker) and Erin Henderson (44) all would be valuable additions in sideline-to-sideline linebacker schemes, and they’re all waiting for offers.

Way to shame teams for not rushing out to scoop up players after lambasting others in the same column for doing just that. Honestly, expected continuity of message in a PK piece is absurd. I’m starting to think it’s a type of avant garde art done to fuck with our expectations of how journalism should work. That or he’s a fucking simp made incoherent by excessive coffee and citrus beer.

8. I think, recalling Alex Smith caddying for coach Jim Harbaugh five weeks ago at the AT&T Pro-Am, this is the column lead of the NFL weekend, from Mark Purdy of the San Jose Mercury News: “Well, what did you expect Alex Smith to do? Sit around the caddie shack and wait for a call?”

“Didja want him to go begging for contracts in a TIN CUP! Haha, golf movies!”

9. I think the Patriots signing Anthony Gonzalez is borderline insignificant, the equivalent of the Red Sox signing a Carlos Silva.

Of course PK waits on the news of the Pats bringing on the whitest Hispanic you know to drop a SAWX reference. THESE FACKIN SPICS AHHH BORDERLINE AT BEST! WE WILL NAWT ACCEPT FAWLSE GRITTINESS. BAHSTAN FANS CAN TELL!

Gonzalez is a nice player to bring to camp, but he’s made five catches in the last three years. He’s had hamstring, knee, ankle, groin and concussion issues since 2009. Good camp guy with speed, but it’ll be an upset if he’s anything more than that.

Fair point. Counterpoint: The Pats receiving corps blows. It wouldn’t be that much of an upset.

10. I think these are my non-football thoughts of the week:

a. I had Bobcat Fever over the weekend. Yes, I’m an Ohio U. alum, and there’s a good chance this column would have been up sooner this morning if I hadn’t been so totally wound up by my alma mater’s win over South Florida Sunday night. To think OU would beat Big Ten and Big East teams in the span of 48 hours in Nashville is a bit heady. To think the Bobcats would be in the Sweet Sixteen against top-seeded North Carolina Friday night … headier.

Look, even Petey is entitled to boasting about his alma mater making the Sweet Sixteen. At least he isn’t talking about rooting for goddamn Harvard. Plus, Duke got KO’d by a 15-seed, which is all I ask out of a tourney. On the other hand, Ohio is shopping these shirts, so fuck them.

b. Thanks for the cool bet, Rich Eisen. Eisen’s a Michigan man, and we bet a change of Twitter avatars on the Bobcats-Wolverines tilt Friday night. That’s why when you go to @richeisen on Twitter, you’ll see Script Ohio until Friday.

c. OK, all you Tar Heel grads. I’m open for bets on OU-UNC Friday night.

d. My late brother, Bob, was a Tar Heel. We’d have a case of Allegash White on this game — or more — if he were around to watch it with me.

HOW’D YOU GUYS FIND SUCH A RARE CITRUSY GEM!? And you’re using it to gamble? Were diamonds not a rich enough prize?

e. Now to get a little more serious …

“Farm boy, fetch me my soapbox.”

f. I don’t understand how it is fair for a member of our military to be accused of murdering 16 Afghan civilians in cold blood and then trying to burn some of them to destroy the evidence … and then having him flown to the United States to stand trial here. I mean, imagine the outrage if a citizen from a foreign country murdered 16 Americans in this country, and his government spirited him back to his homeland, somehow, to stand trial. We’d be outraged. It’s just wrong.

g. Speaking of wrong, this New York Times column by Charles M. Blow, concerning the death of an unarmed 17-year-old African-American boy, Trayvon Martin, is worth your time if you’ve not read it yet. The column is certainly not wrong. The situation is.

Let’s all congratulate Peter King for reading the New York Times this weekend and taking the time to distill the paper into digestible nuggets of warmed-over squishy upper-middle-class outrage.

h. I saw Game Change. It’s entertaining, frightening, a good movie. I was left to think the makers of it went a little over the top in bashing Sarah Palin over the head. I mean, do you think on the Vice President’s plane, with Palin and her aides traveling from one appearance to another, that her people would actually play the Saturday Night Live skit that bashes her to smithereens? If that happened, then the Palin crew is a bunch of idiots. I don’t see how that could be true. I have a feeling HBO could have done a movie that was eye-opening and stunning simply by telling exactly what happened. Why exaggerate? And if there’s no exaggeration, I’m stunned.

You said you were done with politics, you fat sack of lies. And how do you know Palin didn’t watch the clips herself. She appeared on SNL during the campaign season, so she was obviously aware of the characterization they were doing of her. Still, fine, it might be a guess on the part of the filmmakers. Thanks for calling out guesswork wherever you find it outside your own work, Peter.

k. Coffeenerdness: Memo to restaurants everywhere: Why do you not respect espresso and coffee drinkers? I’ve almost given up on finding good coffee after a meal.

Christ.

Society did not heed PK’s calls to respect the sun and for their impertinence the people paid a hefty toll. Rather than resign himself to ignored soothsayer, Petey is not content to stand idly by and allow espresso and coffee drinkers to not be granted their due respect by the restauranteurs of everywhereville. Dire consequences will be had if lattes and espresso drinks are not brought up to levels of consistency deemed acceptable by fat bitchy sportwriters. A great reaping will be had and possibly a less than 20 percent tip. Possibly also a stern word with the manager that will almost certainly be disregarded immediately, as though he were talking to Jim McMahon.

l. Beernerdness: Had my first glass of Estrella Damm pilsener from Barcelona the other night. A little too mild for me, like Stella Artois, but pleasant enough.

Perhaps it reminds you of Stella because it’s another mass-marketed European pilsner that smug fuck restaurants are instructed to serve in a wine glass. Not surprising that PK would find it unlofty by reason of lack of citrus.

o. Happy 14th birthday, Emma Pacifico.

p. And rest in peace, Furman Bisher. One of the finest sports columnists in America, Bisher, 93, died of a heart attack Sunday, and his peers gushed with praise. Former Atlanta Journal Constitution editor Jim Minter told the paper Sunday: “He put more quality words on newsprint than any other writer in the last half of the 20th century.” Well put. He was also very good to young writers coming up in the business. He’ll be missed.

Sadly he passed before Peter could ensure a world of consistent restaurant coffee.

And of course, Spencer Hall has a better appreciation for Bisher than any of PK’s gushy peers.