2008 Absurd Quote Power Rankings   

Updated: December 31, 2008

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2008 Sounds of the Year

Anyone can say something dumb. But not every dumb utterance is so preposterously silly, so epically moronic, so downright Dadaist that it transcends everyday duncedom and enters the realm of classical, enduring absurdity.

Think: "Fade into Bolivian."

Think: "We talking about practice. Practice."

Think: "I'm a man! I'm 40!"

To honor the quotes that made it rain all over 2008, Page 2 proudly presents our year-end Absurd Quote Power Rankings:

1. "I should have a third ear coming out of my forehead."

Speaker: Roger Clemens
Context: During a national television interview, offered as a reason the former MLB pitcher couldn't possibly have used performance-enhancing drugs.
Absurd because: Offered with a completely straight face.
Numerical score: 100

2 . "That's my teammate ... (sniff) ... that's my ... (sniff) ... quarter ... (barely audible) ... back."

Speaker: Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Terrell Owens
Context: Talking about Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo following a playoff loss to the New York Giants.
Absurd because: T.O. was talking about a teammate, not a tragically cracked full-length mirror.
Numerical score: 99.9

3. "He's got to just stay to himself and swallow it ... because everybody wanna try the football player."

Speaker: Former NFL running back and Leavenworth inmate Bam Morris
Context: Unsolicited incarceration advice for former NFL quarterback Michael Vick.
Absurd because: Real quote ... or episode synopsis for HBO's "Oz"?
Numerical score: 95

4. "It's become like a common thing in the NHL for guys to fall in love with my sloppy seconds."

Speaker: Suspended Dallas Stars agitator Sean Avery
Context: Two of Avery's exes -- actress Elisha Cuthbert and model Rachel Hunter -- reportedly are dating other NHL players.
Absurd because: Avery summoned a camera crew before speaking and ended his comments with, "Enjoy the game tonight!"
Numerical score: 92

5. "Is it hard to swallow? Yeah, it's a big turkey going down my throat, a couple bones sticking in there."

Speaker: Then-Detroit Lions coach Rod Marinelli
Context: After the Lions' 48-25 loss to Green Bay in Week 2.
Absurd because: It didn't come after the Lions' 47-10 loss to Tennessee on Thanksgiving.
Numerical score: 91

6. "I think they do it to look good in the lobby in their three-piece suit."

Speaker: Roger Clemens
Context: The Rocket explaining why athletes use performance-enhancing drugs in the first place.
Absurd because: Clemens wore a two-piece suit to subsequent Capitol Hill steroids hearings ... thereby proving his innocence!
Numerical score: 90

7. "I believe in the invisible. I do."

Speaker: Then-Detroit Lions coach Rod Marinelli
Context: Explaining to reporters how he maintains faith in himself and his team despite a 0-13 record. Er, attempting to explain.
Absurd because: Inexplicable failure to also mention the Great Pumpkin.
Numerical score: 88

8. "Kobe, tell me how my a-- tastes."

Speaker: Phoenix Suns center Shaquille O'Neal
Context: During a freestyle rap at a New York nightclub, O'Neal taunted Kobe Bryant for failing to win a championship on his own. (On a classier note, The Diesel also blamed his former teammate for the breakup of his marriage.)
Absurd because: Beyond the "during a freestyle rap at a New York nightclub" part?
Numerical score: 87

9. "I used my pants to illustrate."

Speaker: San Francisco 49ers coach Mike Singletary
Context: With his club trailing 20-3 at halftime, Singletary dropped his trousers during a locker room speech, the better to "dramatize" how poorly the 49ers were playing.
Absurd because: Prompted a sentence never before seen in NFL wire copy: "The coach was wearing boxers."
Numerical score: 85

10. "The only way to come back and make that be the right decision would be to come back and win a Super Bowl."

Speaker: Brett Favre
Context: Spoken during Favre's teary Green Bay Packers retirement news conference.
Absurd because: New York Jets playoff tickets are really hard to come by.
Numerical score: 84

11. "Mark my words: If Shaun Rogers is healthy, he'll be the NFL defensive player of the year."

Speaker: Former Detroit Lions president Matt Millen
Context: Millen sharing his football wisdom.
Absurd because: During the offseason, Millen traded Rogers for backup Leigh Bodden and a third-round draft pick.
Numerical score: 83

12. "Look, I don't want to win in the press. I want to win on the field."

Speaker: Oakland Raiders generalissimo Al Davis
Context: Uttered at the start of a news conference explaining the firing of coach Lane Kiffin.
Absurd because: Davis spent the rest of the conference ripping Kiffin to a roomful of reporters and a national television audience.
Numerical score: 82

13. "I truly believe that the reason I made the awful mistake and a few thereafter was because I didn't love myself enough to tell the truth."

Speaker: Disgraced sprinter Marion Jones
Context: Delivered on "Oprah" following Jones' six-month federal prison term for lying about doping.
Absurd because: Jones continues to be evasive about her doping.
Numerical score: 80

14. "We don't want our players hanging around with murderers."

Speaker: Indiana Pacers president Larry Bird
Context: Spoken after a man wanted in connection with a murder case was arrested leaving the home of Pacers forward Shawne Williams.
Absurd because: Duh Factor is off the charts.
Numerical score: 79

15. "I'm not 0-10! You're 0-10!"

Speaker: Then-Detroit Lions coach Rod Marinelli
Context: Responding to a reporter after a 31-22 loss to Carolina in Week 11.
Absurd because: That's it. We're beginning to think Marinelli needs to attend charm school.
Numerical score: 77

16. "I never even knew that was in the rule book."

Speaker: Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb
Context: Following the Eagles' 13-13 tie with Cincinnati in Week 11, McNabb admitted he had no idea NFL games could end in ties ...
Absurd because: ... even though he is, in fact, a professional football player.
Numerical score: 75

17. "[This is ] a trial by media ... this kind of circus really bothers me."

Speaker: Rep. Dan Burton (R-Ind.)
Context: During congressional hearings involving Clemens and steroids use.
Absurd because: Burton promptly grilled witness Brian McNamee in grandstanding, where's-the-camera? fashion, highlighted by Col. Jessep-esque blurt of, "I know one thing I don't believe -- that's you!"
Numerical score: 73

18. "I am a man possessed. Will do everything we can."

Speaker: Oklahoma City businessman/Seattle Sonics co-owner Clay Bennett
Context: Bennnet's response to a partner's e-mail asking whether Bennett could get the Sonics out of their lease early.
Absurd because: Bennett said in court that he was "possessed" to keep the Sonics in Seattle. Funny how that worked out.
Numerical score: 72

19. "Well, you know what? I still think I can. I do."

Speaker: Outgoing Syracuse football coach Greg Robinson
Context: During his final news conference, Robinson read "The Little Engine That Could" -- highlighted by a "I think I can" call-and-response with the team's play-by-play announcer.
Absurd because: Robinson's 10-37 record indicates a belief in the invisible.
Numerical score: 70

20. "I got shot in the head by my own guys in my foxhole. And they didn't even give me an honorable death."

Speaker: New York Knicks point guard (technically speaking) Stephon Marbury
Context: Marbury venting over teammates' not caring that he has been banished from the Knicks.
Absurd because: When you earn millions to sit in the front row, death-before-dishonor is a bit overrated.
Numerical score: 66

21. "He has the heart of a poet trapped inside an insanely gorgeous body."

Speaker: Madonna
Context: What the pop star reportedly said about alleged paramour/New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez.
Absurd because: Equally applicable to J.J. Redick. Sans the insanely gorgeous part.
Numerical score: 64

22. "It might seem crazy, but I'm looking at this team five or 10 years down the road, and it is filled with good young players from the draft. I'm percolating coffee here. I'm not making instant."

Speaker: Then-Detroit Lions coach Rod Marinelli
Context: Sharing his thoughts on his team prior to the season.
Absurd because: Nobody told Marinelli his roster was decaf.
Numerical score: 60

23. "We all make mistakes. He needs a chance to make mistakes."

Speaker: Then-Indiana University basketball recruit Devin Ebanks
Context: Ebanks on recruiting violations committed by then-IU basketball coach Kelvin Sampson, who was subsequently dismissed.
Absurd because: Um, you mean even more mistakes?
Numerical score: 52

24. "Mr. Clemens, I am not an expert in any of these issues ... but you appear to be the same size in all of these photos."

Speaker: Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.)
Context: During congressional steroids/Clemens hearing.
Absurd because: Foxx almost demonstrated self-awareness.
Numerical score: 51

25. "Then why are you covering the [Washington] Nationals?"

Speaker: Presidential candidate Ralph Nader
Context: Nader to The Washington Post, after the paper decided not to cover his presidential bid because he had no chance of winning.
Absurd because: Come to think of it, this quote makes perfect sense.
Numerical score: 0


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