Thursday, November 29, 2007

Reminder: Cardboard Gods Still Rules

Someone on Deadspin today mentioned that they knew a guy who knew for a fact (can't argue with that kind of authority) that Bill Simmons makes over a million bucks a year writing for ESPN. Who knows? Maybe it's true. Maybe he deserves it. I know it's not popular to say such things in the hipper-than-thou sports blogosphere, but Simmons is a good writer and I have no doubt that he brings the eyes to justify a lot of money, so good on him if it's true.

But if it is true, it's also evidence that the universe is not a fair place, because for all of his good qualities, Simmons isn't even the best writer who happens to be a Boston Red Sox fan. That title goes to the incomparable Josh Wilker of Cardboard Gods, who never ceases to amaze, even when he allegedly has writers' block.

This is a little old, but in late October he began a five-part + epilogue series relating to his Sox (and so much more) called "The Yazmobile" which, like everything else he writes, is alternatively funny, touching, sad, and thought-provoking, often times in the course of a couple of sentences. The chapters can be found here: Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5 and Epilogue. Unless you're performing CPR, you should stop what you're doing and check it out.

Bill Simmons made a lot of money writing a book about the Red Sox called Now I Can Die in Peace. Josh Wilker probably writes Cardboard Gods for nothing, but one gets the sense after reading "The Yazmobile" that the Red Sox 2004 championship brought him a peace that was much greater, and much more deserved.


jnr98 said...

That was me. I grew up with one of Bill's buddies (oft mentioned), who told he he makes about $1.5M per.

If they are paying Rick Reilly $2M to come from SI, it's in the ballpark given the page views Simmons generates.

Pete Toms said...

I read neither Simmons or Reilly but I agree with Craig that although it's not "popular to say such things in the hipper-than-thou sports blogosphere," there is very good work being done by baseball writers in big media. I read Disney / ESPN every day, Olney, Neyer & Law at a minimum. I read the Globe & Mail sports section daily, Blair, Brunt, Houston et. al.

A lot of bloggers who fancy themselves superior to the MSM ( I hate that acronym ) are merely jealous and conceited.

I don't get that vibe here. If I did I wouldn't be here.

jnr98 said...

I agree. It's way to fashionable to bash anything that's generally popular, no matter how good the work really is.

I used to read Simmons regularly but lately he's gotten stale.

I am a big fan of Buster, Neyer, Law and the rest. I try to tune into/participate in their chats whenever possible, too.

but I think they are all hacks, like the rest of MSM.... (chuckle)

Diesel said...

God lord, that's some great writing on Cardbord Gods.

TomE said...

So many seem to hate Simmons now. Hard to understand all the bitterness. He is still funny to this Yankee fan, although some of his defenses of the Patriots have been difficult to swallow. If he's making serious scratch, good for him. I look forward to reading Cardboard Gods, as the Shyster seems to be an erudite man of good taste.