Friday, August 29, 2014

Summer Reading Project: The Smart Girl's Guide to Quarterbacks

The Hab It Her Way Summer Reading Project is my way of sharing the misery that is reading The Smart Girl's Guide to Sports, which cost $2. Let's laugh at this together.

I think I might be a glutton for punishment. I could have just put down this book after the offensive intro and the questionable chapter about basketball. I'll admit that I learned a few things, but I'm not sure it was worth it. To put this in terms more familiar to the audience of The Smart Girl's Guide, it was like going all the way to another neighbourhood for a sample sale and only scoring one blouse.
(I can't remember the last time I even wore a blouse. I'm more of a novelty T-shirt kind of Smart Girl.)

Anyway, I decided to press on and give the football chapter a read. I had read a few pages of it when I bought the book some years back, hoping to bring my football knowledge a little bit further than "ten yards in four downs." I learned a few things, but I never finished the chapter. Now I know why. Like the rest of the book, it's informative, but quite eyeroll-inducing. Now, it's worth mentioning that the author seems to have a particular fondness for football, if you can call it that. It was her gateway sport - she was surrounded by football fans and decided that if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. You may remember that her gushing about Jerry Rice is what got her in the good graces of a man she knows!

There was quite a bit of information in this chapter. My first reading of it taught me about two-point conversions, because I didn't remember seeing one happen until that point. This reading revealed a lot more information about a few elements of the game, but of course it was all buried under pounds and pounds of mansplaining. One joke gave me hope that this chapter might be different from the rest: "Women tackle problems. Men tackle each other."
"Yeah, let's tackle some problems like the smart girls we are!"
But then the rest of the chapter had jokes about how a man buying a woman flowers and jewelry can facilitate "scoring." I thought that this book was supposed to be for women - did she write it specifically for women who are also characters on Entourage? Is that why there are entire paragraphs about whose butts you should look at and whose butts are not worth looking at?
There are some very useful bits in this chapter (like a guide to rivalries and explanations of a few key terms) but that didn't stop me from gasping in abject horror at the worst things in the whole chapter. Because there are two of them. One: If there are only two things you learn about Joe Montana, the second (and most important!) is that he has "the most gorgeous ice-blue eyes ever seen in the NFL." (The first thing you need to know is that he's good at football.) Two: The author literally gives readers a word-for-word quote of a sports-savvy thing they can say. Which... really? I'm not sure that putting words into someone's mouth is a good idea. Especially not if you're just spotting them one sentence. Who says one sentence and just walks away from a conversation? Smart Girls of the world: Don't say something because someone wrote it for you word-for-word, unless that person is your presidential speechwriter.

If this book was written in 2014: It would probably still be all about Tom Brady, because he's the most quarterbackiest handsomest of all the QBs in the NFL (because the other ones don't have pretty eyes like Brady has pretty eyes.)
Any mention of the Redskins' name would go beyond some Cowboys fans (due to rivalry) "would say their logo is politically incorrect."
I'm not sure what she would say about Peyton Manning's Broncos getting shellacked at the Super Bowl, but I sure as hell wish I could read it.

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