* Welcome to The Big Jewel, where we are always careful to stay culturally sensitive and politically correct. Our Corporate Correctness Ombudsman this week is Luke Kelly-Clyne.

Letter To The NFL, From Native Americans

By: Luke Kelly-Clyne

Dear National Football League,

We are writing to inform you that we have raised the funds to start a football franchise (blessed to be in the casino biz) and we are hoping you will consider allowing us to compete in your fine league.

Now, we know our relationship with your organization has been a bit contentious in recent months and it is true that a very small contingent of our group find the Washington Redskins name to be onerous, but let us be clear: we are not a part of that contingent. We are sports fans and we are business people. Our intentions are driven not by a desire to stoke polarizing political debates but rather by a humble aspiration to become a small part of this country’s most honorable pastime with our new team: The Culturally Insensitive Pricks.

Coming up with a team name is a challenge, as we are sure you know all too well. The Eagles? The Falcons? The Seahawks? The Seahawks. How did you think of that? Is it a bird? Is it a fish? That’s not just run-of-the-mill, slur-an-entire-people creativity. That’s art. It should come as no surprise, then, that when we sat down to brainstorm an identity for our team we took it seriously, and we started with one simple question: what’s a name that the NFL will relate to? What’s a name that would honor your great coalition, no matter what city our team came to represent? When Dan suggested “The Culturally Insensitive Pricks,” we knew we’d found something special.

First, it’s got staying power. Culturally insensitive pricks aren’t some fly-by-night fad or passing infatuation, they’re an inextricable part of our very American fabric. Looking back through the annals of this great nation’s history, what’s the one element that has been here all along? Besides Eagles and Falcons. The answer, of course, is raping, pillaging, self-important, power-mongering, money-grubbing, megalomaniacal, culturally insensitive pricks. As long as an arbitrarily imposed hierarchical arrangement of races is tacitly encouraged by wise bodies like the NFL, being a Culturally Insensitive Prick will mean as much 1,000 years from now as it does today. Of that we can be sure.

Second, culturally insensitive pricks are indigenous to every American state, so they can be housed in any city, big or small, near or far. New York? Certainly. Los Angeles? You betcha. Delaware? Yes, and literally anywhere else. Culturally insensitive pricks know no geographical bounds!

Last, and perhaps most importantly, the strength of a team’s name relies on its identification with a singularly powerful character, a character who routinely flouts the bounds of expectation and convention to accomplish something that shocks the many who watch, like a Seahawk swimflying in a wave or, and apologies if you know where this is headed, a culturally insensitive prick. A true, proud culturally insensitive prick like each and every one of you.

In closing, we thank you for your time and hope that you consider our proposition. We look forward to hearing from you Pricks very soon!


Native Americans

* Welcome to The Big Jewel, your source for all professional sports logo wear. This week please give a warm welcome to Luke Kelly-Clyne, whose first piece for us is a left-handed compliment to one of the greatest figures in modern sports.

To The Forty-Five-Year-Old Man Wearing A Tom Brady Jersey At My Local Supermarket

By: Luke Kelly-Clyne

Hello, sir.

I don’t want to take up too much of your time but I noticed you at the supermarket yesterday, wearing that Tom Brady jersey. You intrigued and confused me. To be frank, I can’t get your image out of my head. I wonder if I might be able to ask you a few questions, you know, to clear things up, so I can start to think about something else. I’ll be brief. I promise.

What were you thinking about when you put it on? The jersey, I mean. Do you believe you’re Tom Brady when you wear it? Were you hoping you’d slide the silky mesh over your head and find that you’re suddenly rich, handsome, and married to a supermodel, instead of a single, pot-bellied, pharmaceutical sales rep who has lost quite a bit of hair?

Or was it a showing of support for the team, and for Tom specifically? Did a part of you think that the Patriots would be watching you from their off-season Fan Monitoring Facility in Palm Beach and that, when they saw how striking you looked in the blue and red, they’d send a representative to inform you that you’d won a lifetime supply of player-used plastic cutlery and would be inducted into the Tom Brady Look-Alike Hall of Fame on the Moon?

Maybe it wasn’t that at all, though. Maybe you were hoping that someone in the Towson, Maryland Costco would mistake your five-foot-eight, one-hundred-ninety-nine pound frame for an athlete’s and would give you a toss. “Heads up!” he’d yell as he hurled an official NFL football he’d found wedged in between a jumbo tub of nacho cheese and a plasma TV. And you’d be ready — weaving in between carts overflowing with Kirkland bluejeans and half-priced Wii Fits, making an awe-inspiring catch right before the T-Mobile kiosk representative politely asked that you “pick up the Blackberry Curve you just knocked over.” And then you’d run the ball back to its origin and realize that Tom Brady is the one who threw it! He’d thank you for making “a great play” and compliment you on how well your jersey fit. Then he’d tell you that he needed to talk to you about an opportunity…”with the team.” Three days later, you’d be the Patriot’s new third string quarterback. You wouldn’t get much playing time but, hey, “that’s how Brady started,” you’d tell yourself, in between dead-lifts at the Patriot’s Workout Facility made of million dollar bills. Is that it?

The only other thing I can think of is: The year is 2024 and you actually are Tom Brady. You left the NFL years ago, after a scandal involving your refusal to abuse dogs or carry an unregistered, concealed weapon landed you hard-up and alone. While living in your parents’ basement and trolling Monster.com, you stumbled upon a job in Pfizer’s Baltimore office, moved south, and packed on the pounds after discovering the Sunday-night-magic of Comedy Central and ring-dings. The only thing you kept from the old days is that jersey, the one I saw you wearing yesterday. It helps you remember the good times.

But, if all that’s true, and the year actually is 2024, then where does that leave me? Where have the last 13 years of my life gone? Why aren’t there more movies available for Instant Play on NetFlix? Why does Ashton Kutcher still look so damn good?

Nope, just checked my phone. It’s still 2011.

So, what were you thinking when you put that jersey on, sir? I just really need to know.

Oh, and when you respond, can you let me know how you deal with stains? I just spilled strawberry smoothie all over my favorite limited edition “Katy Perry for President” tee-shirt.