Unless you woke up early New Year’s Day morning with such a bad headache and cotton mouth that you couldn’t even go back to sleep (of course I’m speaking hypothetically here, in no way do I know what that’s like), you probably missed Mike Ditka’s interesting analysis of the Indianapolis Colts’ decision of whether or not to take Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck with the first pick in April’s NFL draft.
Ditka argued that the Colts shouldn’t take Luck, in part because of the positive attributes of backup Dan Orlovsky, which included being “a good Polack.”
Now, before everyone starts running out to boycott products, it should be noted that Ditka is one of three children from a Ukrainian family. In fact, Ditka’s family changed its name from “Dyczko” because it was too hard to pronounce in his hometown in Western Pennsylvania.
Changed his name? What is he, an entertainer? Maybe that’s it, maybe Ditka fashions himself as a stand-up comedian instead of an analyst.
The way I see it, Ditka is just following the longstanding stand-up comedy tradition of “I Am One So I Can Make Fun of Them.” It is this unwritten but well-understood societal rule that has blessed us with the careers of many of today’s popular comedians, including Margaret Cho, George Lopez, and D.L. Hugley.
Hmm…maybe it’s time we re-thought this rule.
In any event, there really isn’t any sort of advantage to being Polish in the game of football, unless you count fans being able to make out your name on the back of your jersey more easily from the cheap seats.
If given the chance to take Luck, it’s not like the St. Louis Rams should get rid of Sam Bradford because he’s too much of a stuffy, uptight WASP (See, now I’m taking advantage of the rule, to similarly hilarious results).
But the whole ordeal does remind me of the old SNL Superfans skit, specifically the question of how many Ditkas does it take to beat the New York Giants?
Michael Grubb is a (semi) regular contributor to Team JSF. When he’s not watching “An Evening With Margaret Cho” on DVD, he can be reached at: