Tuesday, August 28, 2012

On the Yankees' debacle and Penn State getting rid of "Sweet Caroline"

I was in a foul mood after last night's debacle -- the Yankees should have won that game. Unfortunately -- or perhaps fortunately! -- I was having problems with my television's cable box and remote, so I went from seeing the Yankees ahead by three runs, to seeing that the Toronto Blue Jays went ahead for good in the 11th (which means I missed both Rafael Soriano giving up the go-ahead homer, and Derek Jeter tying the game!)

Now the Yankees have just a 3.5 game lead over the Baltimore Orioles, and a 4 game lead over the Tampa Bay Rays. The standings of the last week or so are a little too close for comfort for me. Oh, and Mark Teixeria is out for the next week or so due to a strained calf. Oh joy.

Then I saw something this morning that got me even more ticked off. I was watching Pat Kiernan's "In the Papers" report on NY1 this morning, and I saw that the New York Daily News had half of its front page devoted to eviscerating Penn State for getting rid of playing "Sweet Caroline" during football games. The song's lyrics talk about "touching me, touching you," although the school denied that this had anything to do with them ditching the song in the wake of Jerry Sandusky molestation scandal.

In an article entitled "Banning Neil Diamond's 'Sweet Caroline' proves that Penn State is out of tune with reality and needs to rethink priorities," (that's a mouthful!) sports columnist Dick Weiss complains about the "culture police," saying: "This is a new era of political correctness at Penn State, which apparently doesn’t want to embarrass the school any further. But by banning the song, it has done just that." He also claims that after the Sandusky pedophila scandal, getting rid of this song is "putting a Band-Aid on a patient after open heart surgery." (Full disclosure -- Squawker Jon and I used to work at the News, but we never knew Dick Weiss.)

Weiss is dead wrong here, and I applaud Penn State for getting rid of this song. He's setting up a straw man here -- nobody is saying that dumping the song will fix things but him. However, if the school were to keep this song, they would indeed be mocked for it.

First of all, playing "Sweet Caroline" is a Boston Red Sox tradition that the school ripped off. Second, longtime Squawker readers know that I have been complaining for years that this is a perverted and creepy song. This is what I wrote back in 2009, when the Mets briefly played the song during the eighth inning:

Neil Diamond has said he wrote it about Caroline Kennedy. She was all of nine years old at the time. Tell me, how is this appropriate to write this about a little girl?
Hands, touchin' hands
Reachin' out
Touchin' me
Touchin' you
Or this?
Look at the night
And it don't seem so lonely
We fill it up with only two
And when I hurt
Hurtin' runs off my shoulders
How can I hurt when holdin' you
Anyhow, getting rid of this horrible and sick song is the right move on Penn State's part given the Sandusky scandal. Come to think of it, I also hope Penn State also ditches Gary Glitter's "Rock and Roll Part II" if they play that one, too. You're welcome.

What do you think? Tell us about it!

1 comment:

Uncle Mike said...

The Devils dropped "Rock and Roll Part II" as a goal-celebration song when Gary Glitter was in prison on child-porn charges, replacing it with the "Ole, ole ole ole" song (which Met fans know as "Jose, Jose Jose Jose"). But they brought it back, and now it's followed by the fans pointing at the goalie who allowed the goal, by yelling, "Hey! You suck!"

I've been watching English soccer for four years now, and the fans have so much more imagination with the songs they use.

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