FINALIST NO. 5
Name: Joe Barkan
College: Vassar College, 2005
Residence: Bar Harbor, Maine
Current Job: Student
This story probably won't land me the new intern job, but maybe it will convince Bill and the higher-ups at ESPN that I have that appreciation for ironic humor so necessary for the job. I was home from school for a few days during the autumn before last, about a week after the Aaron Boone game. I was at a party at University of Maine with my buddy Zach, one of my few remaining friends from high school. We were sitting and drinking in the living room of some dude's house. It had some soul-healing potential for me: get over the misery of the loss with some guys over some beers, and then lock myself in a stranger's bedroom with a blonde wearing a pink Damon shirt. Then the front door opened and in walked a guy in a Yankees hat, with an absolutely stunning girl on his arm. The guys in the room did the usual frown, straighten up, clench your fists reaction typical of a Yankee fan sighting in New England, but none of us were inspired enough to start something. We were, however, blatantly ogling his girl, who was a dead ringer for Winnie Cooper from the Wonder Years. That is, if Winnie Cooper was carrying a 40 of Coors Light and ever took off her winter coat to reveal a tube top. Her boyfriend started talking to someone and she left to get a beer, so I saw my chance and followed her into the kitchen. I laid all the charm on this small town Maine chick that I had crafted over the years from flirting with New York City socialites at Vassar, and she absolutely ate it up. It was one of the most impressive showings in my history of hitting on chicks. Within 10 minutes we were hardcore flirting in the hallway, and soon occupied an upstairs bedroom, where I took out my frustrations for the Nation: for Tim Wakefield, for Todd Walker, for Mike Timlin, for Scott Williamson. I later saw the girl leaving with the guy in the Yankees hat, and he was none the wiser. When I told Zach where I'd been, he gave me a high five, and asked me a vital question, a question that definitely will not get me the intern job if I repeated it here. But the answer involved her right eyebrow.
FINALIST NO. 6
Name: Chuck Bell
College: Ithaca College
Residence: Kenmore, NY
Current Job: Grant Writer
I know it was you Sports Guy ... you broke my heart ... you broke my heart.
Why did you have to put age parameters on your intern contest?! I'm 29 years old and I promise you that I'm every bit as immature and emotionally stunted as any 21 year old who submits an application. I guess this is your way of telling all us geriatric sports fans that we are completely out of touch with pop culture. I'm not gonna lie to you -- it hurts. That being said, in an act of futility, I'm protesting your submission form and giving you a countdown of reasons (in 400 words) that I'm a big enough loser to be the intern ... I hope you choke on 'em:
12. I hate when people misuse the word literally, so believe me when I say I literally spend five hours a day on-line and most of that time has to do with sports columns, fantasy leagues, celebrity gossip, The Onion, or Anna Benson's website.
11. I am trying to get an MBA, but I am going to skip my marketing class tonight because there is the prospect of girl-on-girl action in the OC ... .and yes I'm fully aware that the end result will be a minor tease and brief contact that will do nothing for me, but I can NOT miss it.
10. I still go to Jazzfest in New Orleans every year, if for no other reason than to have a forum to wear my "I love boobies" t-shirt.
9. I watch MTV as much now as I did growing up when they still played music videos.
8. The last book I read was :The Last Night of the Yankee Dynasty: and I only put it down twice -- both for meals.
7. I can do each one of the Orlando Cabrera handshakes, complete with over-the-top L'il John screams as needed.
6. I am a 5'7" white guy with little discernable athletic skill, yet I still think back to my high school baseball and wrestling days and wonder why I don't have my own ESPN Classic episode or, better yet, an ESPN movie starring the not-a-real-surprise-he-came-out-of-the-closet kid from Who's the Boss?
5. I have seen every one of the sports movies you reference in your columns and I am 30 pages into a script about a roller derby team struggling with stardom in the Midwest circuit.
4. I just lied about working on a script, because while I always talk about writing, I have never written anything longer than 300 words ... .this is exhausting.
3. A friend of mine is working on a screenplay entitled "Porn on the 4th of July."
2. Another friend of mine inexplicably grew up with a 1982 Milwaukee Brewers banner over his bed and can recite every member of the team in less than 15 seconds ... ..okay the last two items say nothing about me except the kinds of people I hang around with and the kinds of conversations I have.
And the number one reason, I'm pathetic enough to aspire to be an intern ...
1. I spent 19 minutes of my life on this tirade.
FINALIST NO. 7
Name: Alexandra Treff
College: The Ohio State University - 2003
Residence: Columbus, Ohio
Current Job: Consultant
There are three things I've ever wanted to do with my life. The first is to witness a miracle which, thanks to my parents' mid-life crises, I was able to do at age 16 when my baby brother Christopher was brought into this world with help from my then 43-year-old mother and what seemed to be a shot of epidural the size of a Chipotle burrito. (My apologies to Chipotle -- I really think your burritos are great and they sure do a lot for my digestive health).
The second is to ride around Daytona in a stock car with Dale Earnhardt Jr. at the wheel while, if I'm lucky (or drunk), having him rub my leg. I'm pretty sure that there's no application in the world where I could sign up for something like this, because if there was I would probably break the land-speed record and sell my internal organs on the black market to get my hands on one.
Finally, I've recently decided that I was a complete bonehead in college and didn't nearly concentrate on the two skills I've developed throughout my life: a love of sports and writing. Instead, I wasted my time reading Russian literature and taking adolescent development courses with the hopes of one day walking in the shoes Michelle Pfeiffer so elegantly left at the doorway to public education, complete with my own Cooli-ooli-o and classroom full of ignorant juvenile delinquents thirsting for my poetic and effective teaching tools.
So where does this leave me? Hoping that I will one day be able to complete the trifecta of life-fulfilling moments by getting some kind of job, in any capacity, with ESPN. If somehow this application ends up in the hands of Mel Kiper's assistant's assistant and a doe-eyed ignorant is needed to clean hair gel off of shirt collars, I'm your girl. And because I think the Sports Guy is one of the wittiest and knowledgeable contributors to the entertainment world, there would be no better place for me to make my mark than on the goldenrod screens of Page 2 while learning from the guru himself. So pick me, Sports Guy, because if anything you can have the assurance in knowing you'll never have to worry about ring-around-the-collar again.
FINALIST NO. 8
Name: Jason Wainscott
College: University of Cincinnati, 2000
Residence: Cincinnati, Ohio
Current Job: Attorney
The details of my life are quite inconsequential. I am a graduate of the University of Cincinnati and a licensed attorney in the great state of Ohio. I know every line in "Dumb and Dumber." I know every word to the theme song from "Shaft." I can type, and you can't tell by looking at me, but I can run really fast.
I own an Ickey Woods' jersey and wear it at least once a week. I can read and write in Spanish, Italian, Latin, Sanskrit and Manchurian Chinese. I have good hands and I know all the state's capitols. I would under no circumstances split tens and would probably punch anyone at the table who would. I can bench 225 lbs 10 times, and on a recent barnstorming trip across the United Kingdom I was described as "cheeky."
I own every season of the show "News Radio" on video before Phil Hartman died, and if you can't see the virtue in that, well, we can't be friends. I have a motorcycle endorsement on my driver's license, and I'm a former Conference USA scholar-athlete of the year. I have email, access to a fax machine, a good (not great) long-distance plan, and a dog named "Flash."
Two words: impeccable math skills; too more words: grate speller.
I once sold my mom's records so I could buy a game-worn Cincinnati Reds' Pokey Reese jersey, and I own every CD ever put out by every member of N.W.A., except DJ Yella. I don't like hockey, but I do vote in nearly every election.
I broke off my engagement when I discovered my bride-to-be did not like "Field Of Dreams." I recognize the virtue of the pick and roll and its effectiveness in pick-up games; I also know how to properly use a semi colon. I have cable and satellite, PlayStation and XBox, and subsequently, no life. My reflexes have been described as "cat-like," and in a bar I once bet Pete Rose I could beat him at arm wrestling ... and promptly lost ten bucks. I know the difference between "accept" and "except," yet still I've been a constant disappointment to my family, my few remaining friends, and the few women who have given me pity sex. I've seen "Friday Night Lights" seven times in the last ten days.
I have no integrity, pride, humility, shame or self-esteem; but I can count to 400.
Bill Simmons is a columnist for Page 2 and ESPN The Magazine. His Sports Guy's World site is updated every day Monday through Friday.