The Spectacle Blog

Re: Steve Irwin

By on 9.5.06 | 11:27AM

Phillip: Your response reminds me, actually, of a passage from All the King's Men: "The end of man is knowledge, but there is one thing he can't know. He can't know whether knowledge will save him or kill him."

At the heart of it all, Irwin sought knowledge and shed light on some dangerous wonders for people across the globe. His wife was there for much of it, so she clearly consented. And while his death is sad and tragic for his children, they will grow up with evidence of a father who balked at nothing and went where few if any other men were willing to go. To my mind that sort of one of a kind fearlessness is a much better example than a father who gave up what he loved because the world is a dangerous place.

Irwin didn't die in some traffic accident or of a heart attack. It isn't as if he didn't provide extensivley for his family. He went out wrestling aligators, snakes and, finally, swimming in shallow water with a 220 pound stingray that got in a lucky shot. The entire world mourned his death because they knew he was special. May one percent of us end with such glory!

Re: Steve Irwin

By on 9.5.06 | 10:39AM

Obviously, it's a tragedy when anybody dies, but in my view Irwin was being very selfish and irresponsible as a husband and father by doing what he was doing. It's one thing to play around with deadly animals when you're a young, single, guy, but if you love doing something dangerous, you simply should not have a family. That's just a sacrifice you're going to have to make, because it's not fair to make your wife a widow and your children fatherless. If having a family means a lot to you, then give up hunting Crocodiles.

Steve Irwin, RIP

By on 9.4.06 | 11:40AM

There's very sad news today from Australia. Steve Irwin - who the world knew as "The Crocodile Hunter" -- was killed by a stingray while filming a special in the waters off an Australian island. Irwin was enormously entertaining, informative and one of the great showmen of the age. His typical shows -- with crocs, snakes and other truly dangerous critters -- often showed how dangerous his work was. But Irwin was a man's man, shrugging off injuries and making sure the show went on despite whatever wounds the creatures inflicted on him. This time, bad luck proved fatal. The stingray's barb apparently hit him directly in the heart. Thanks, Steve. You were one of the greats. Crikey, we'll miss you.

re: Doyle

By on 9.3.06 | 9:20AM

Quin, I made my suggestion about making Allen Doyle to the Ryder Cup team in all seriousness. If, as Johnny Miller said (and I agree), Doyle is the best player in the world from 100 yards in, he would be a fine competitor. As for your assertion that "no way is he even among the best 150 golfers in the world," you contradict yourself by noting that Doyle "hung around the cut line" at the U.S. Open. That would seem to prove he is about #75.

And in any case, ranking in stroke play events does not absolutely indicate effectiveness in match play, nor especially in team match play.

Most important, in team match play, sheer grit and guts count, and Doyle has proven that in spades.

How many show-pony-studded American Ryder Cup teams have you seen that just stunk up the place? A fair number.

Okay, just because I can, and just because I've got a blog, off the top of my head, I'll pick my own Ryder Cup team, and I bet I'd have an even chance of beating the official squad -- on sheer desire and gratitude.

New Seven Wonders of the World

By on 9.1.06 | 9:08PM

1. The Berlin holocaust memorial
2. The Wynn hotel casino
3. The southern border of Northern Cyrpus
4. China's railway to Tibet
5. Tuvalu
6. North Korea, at night, as seen from satellite
7. The Green Zone

Swashbuckle? No, Swishbuckle

By on 9.1.06 | 7:56PM

When last we left the new 007, Daniel Craig, he was announcing he had been scared out of his wits by a ride in a fast boat with some Royal Navy guys. I kiddingly prophesied that this new version of the coolest tough guy on the planet would go way too far, given his renunciation of booze, cigarettes and guns. Sometimes the jokes I make are made unfunny by subsequent events. I really hate this one.

According to this report, Monsewer Craig appears in the new version of In Cold Blood in which he plants a homosexual kiss on another character. Cubby Broccoli must be turning over in his grave. At this rate, Craig will make Bond unrecognizable. It's like the NY Times. The brand will be worthless soon.

Don't go away mad, Mr. Craig. Just go away. Soon.

Rainy Day

By on 9.1.06 | 3:42PM

Here in DC, with a hurricane a comin' or tropical storm or whatever it is, this new worldwide contest/survey should provide at least a good half an hour of entertainment on this rainy, windy, and quite unlovely Friday: