“Do you guys think I’m crazy?”

GwinnettPrep Sports.

Dave Daubenmire tends to get easily distracted. Instead of foaming at the mouth ranting about all those evil commie NFL players in any sort of consistent manner, he derails, right into…soccer. Yep, actual football has his knickers in a knot. Seems that it’s unamerican. Or something.

“American boys play football,” he said, “they don’t play soccer.”

Daubenmire returned to the topic during his webcast today, suggesting that there is an effort to encourage young boys to play soccer in order to undermine the institution of family and insisting that people who can’t see this obvious fact are simply blind to the spiritual forces at work.

Soccer is football, you knothead. Oh, spiritual forces. What forces, Dave? Could it be…Saaatan? Maybe it’s…Deeeemons? Hmmm, perhaps it’s Stolas, he looks like he be good at football:

Stolas is a Great Prince of Hell, commands twenty-six legions of demons, and teaches astronomy and the knowledge of poisonous plants, herbs and precious stones. He is also known as Stolos, Stoppas and Solas. He is depicted as either being a crowned owl with long legs, a raven, or a man.

Daubenmire said that during his coaching years, he routinely saw “little 5 and 6-year-old boys drug off over to the soccer field and their daddies didn’t even know what soccer was, the daddies couldn’t talk to their sons about, ‘Oh yeah, back when I played soccer’ and then the boys could never talk to their dads about when they played football because they took them all and stuck them over in soccer.”

How long ago were you coaching, Dave? Because by my reckoning, that would make you very old indeed. Many decades have gone by in which kids of all genders have flocked to the soccer field in droves. It’s a much more attractive game, and one that requires considerable skill to play, which kids actually recognize, so they understand the point of starting early. Given how long ago soccer became popular here, there are a good many dads and moms out there who played soccer, and can happily yak about their playing days, boring the socks off their kids. It seems pathetic that a coach would need to be told that a parent doesn’t need to have sports behind them to encourage or enjoy their child’s engagement in it.

“Why do we have soccer fields everywhere?” he asked. “Because it takes a man to play football and mommies don’t like seeing their little boys get knocked down, so mommies put them into soccer where they get little knee pads and they don’t really hurt each other.”

Soccer is hardly a pain free or injury free sport, Dave. Most sports for young children are protective in nature, after all, the goal shouldn’t be “brain damage ’em by seven years old!” I’m certainly glad you’ve given up coaching to be a loon. I see this rant devolves into the usual misogynistic crap, where you can’t acknowledge that many women play sports, many women enjoy sports, and of course, it’s the fault of all those evil pussies walking around. Sometimes I despair. All manner of parents look askance at American football these days, the injuries are by no means lightweight, and most parents do actually love and care about their sproggen.

“What does grandpa get to do on Saturday morning?” Daubenmire continued. “Go watch my grandson play football? No. He’s a penguin, he’s running around hitting balls with his head. I can’t relate to him playing soccer. But I can go to a football game and watch him get knocked on his butt, be able to tell him after the game, ‘You know, that happened to me back when I was playing too and let me tell you what to do.’ But I can’t help him with soccer.”

This is not 1950, Dave. Why do I get the idea you’ve never actually watched a football match? I’d dearly love to see your ample arse shoved out on the field, and have to make one goal. Just one, Dave. Then you could leave and get back to ranting. I’m not a sportsball person, I don’t like any of it, but even I can’t deny the disparity between football and American football when it comes to sheer skill and talent. Lining up and ramming people as brutally as possible really shouldn’t be a sport at all, but this is ‘merica.

“Do you guys think I’m crazy?” he asked. “I don’t care. I’m telling you [the truth.]”

Oh, don’t tempt me, Dave. That’s not nice. You aren’t telling the truth, you’re just ranting about your personal dislikes. There’s a difference.

Via RWW, where there’s video.


  1. says

    What I find most weird are his suggestions that what parents (sorry…dads and granddads; women need not apply, apparently) want out of these experiences is to be able to talk about when they played sports as children. Really?!? From my experience, most parents, even the dads and granddads, want their children to do their best. (Like you say, this is more about his personal dislikes than anything we’d call “truth.”)
    Now, sure, they may also want to help their children improve their skill at the sports they play and, if they don’t understand the rules, etc, they may not be able to help their children as much as they’d like. But, gosh, a little bit of research and studying can fix that problem. Maybe adults aren’t supposed to learn new things in Dave’s bizarre world?

  2. says

    I have a very strong dislike of all sports, but soccer, basketball and skiing have that one special place in my heart -- those three I hate with fiery passion of a thousand burning suns, because I was forced to participate in all three against my wishes at school.

    That being said my personal feelings should have no bearing on others and in the highly improbable scenario of my having kids, I certainly would not try and force them into something they do not wish to do, or out of something they like and enjoy.

    I find it fascinating how these christian fundamentalists are able to make everything they personally do not like to be a matter of right or wrong. This one seems to be incapable of understanding the concept that personal preferences do not equal objective truths.

  3. says

    The gendered football -- football divide is one of my favourite examples of how gender roles are cultural.
    Here in Europe women’s football is still so much underrepresented.
    But yeah, it speaks of his own lack of intellectual capacity and sincere interest in kids that he cannot imagine cheering on his kid for whatever activity they like.

  4. kestrel says

    There is so much weirdness here it’s hard to know what to even say. He only talks about male children -- it’s like any other child simply does not exist. And…. children can’t talk to their parents, unless the parents are telling them about what THEY did in the exact same sport the child has to participate in? What?

    @#5, blf: this actually does make me think about hurling, but perhaps not the same type you are referring to.

  5. blf says

    kestrel@6, Ha! Yes, there is the sort of hurling I suspect we both want to do in response to teh eejit quoted in the OP. But to clarify, I was referring to Irish Hurling, which whilst not any form of “football”, is a sport which can look incredibly dangerous. It’s insanely popular in Ireland, and Croke Park in Dublin (which is actually for all the so-called GAA (broadly, Irish) sports, not just hurling) is one of the largest sports stadiums in Europe.

  6. busterggi says

    Presidents, senators, judges -- those folks get to keep their titles after they are no longer working in the field.

    You used to be a coach, Dave, now you’re just Dave.

  7. says

    RE: hurling (or camogie for us ladies) is a game not unlike hockey. About every Irish person has the bat and the ball around and they will patiently try to teach you. People generally support their home county as indicated by a colour code of two colours.
    Then there’s also Gaelic football, which is like normal European football if you ignore all the rules. Hand play, pushing and shoving allowed.
    I used to joke that the only thing forbidden in Gaelic football was bringing weapons. That’s what hurling is for.
    Musical interlope (with some video footage showing hurling): Runrig: Clah of the Ash

  8. blf says

    Giliell@9, Actually those clips in the Runrig(! I haven’t seen / head them in ages, thanks!) video, and indeed the song itself, is about shinty, which is a Scottish game closely related to hurling.

    After some admittedly very quick searching I couldn’t find a video which gives a taste of game without either horrible music or an excessive use of slo-mo. This one, however, whilst it doesn’t show much of the game, seems a decent introduction to hurling; and then here is one giving a better glimpse into the game with possibly-tolerable background music.

  9. komarov says

    “American boys play football,” he said, “they don’t play soccer.”

    But I was under the impression that a stereotypical Real(TM) American Boy* plays baseball, the traditional american pastime. Also rumoured to be utterly boring, which, for me, places it in the same category as any other sportsball-related activity.

    *Girls don’t appear to be worth mentioning. Apparently nobody knows what they are doing. Or nobody cares.

    Regarding Stolas, may I just say I’d have some difficulty taking him seriously? Judging by the reeds in the background he is round about flamingo- or ostrich-sized. If I saw a creature like that I’d be thinking, “What a strange and exotic bird, I’ve never seen anything like it. Except owls, of course.” I would not be thinking, “Ye gods, it’s a lord of hell and his demonic legions must be just over yon hill.”
    Maybe if it was six meters tall and everything under its gaze turned to ashes, but this? Add the crown and I’d wonder who came up with that mascot.

  10. says


    Regarding Stolas, may I just say I’d have some difficulty taking him seriously?

    Christians have never been terribly good at the scary. Perhaps that’s because that god of theirs is scarier than anything else they could come up with. The lords of hell seem to be nice and knowledgeable fellas, really.

    I think you must have missed yesterday’s Earl of Hell, Furfur.

  11. says

    Because it takes a man to play football and mommies don’t like seeing their little boys get knocked down, so mommies put them into soccer where they get little knee pads and they don’t really hurt each other.

    Well if we’re gonna get all testosterone-y about padding…

    I just think it’s rather odd that a nation that prides itself on its virility should feel compelled to strap on forty pounds of protective gear just in order to play rugby.
    —Giles, Buffy The Vampire Slayer

    Person’ly, I prefer snooker, but each to their own.

  12. komarov says

    Re: Caine (#12):

    I think you must have missed yesterday’s Earl of Hell, Furfur.

    No, I didn’t miss him, nor did I miss his extremely sharp claws and pointy antlers. Combined with the distinct possibility of having this creature swoop down upon you -- which might involve even more talons -- this would encourage a little more respect and caution in the face of it. And Furfur certainly looks more demonic with his chimeric body. Next to him Stolas is just an owl with bandy legs. Not much there to invoke thoughts of fire and brimstone.

  13. Rob Grigjanis says

    mommies put them into soccer where they get little knee pads and they don’t really hurt each other

    Knee/shin, arse/elbow. Americans are funny.

  14. lumipuna says

    I bet those inattentive dads wouldn’t be any more interested if their kids played yankeeball -- if they ever even played it themselves.

    Considering Dave’s attitude, he was probably forced to take a job coaching soccer kids, and felt personally emasculated as a result. Must’ve been horrible for the kids.

  15. lumipuna says

    I have a very strong dislike of all sports, but soccer, basketball and skiing have that one special place in my heart — those three I hate with fiery passion of a thousand burning suns, because I was forced to participate in all three against my wishes at school.

    Soccer was OK. I understood the general rule of shoving the ball towards one goal and away from the other. I could generally choose how much to stand around vs. run to stay warm.

    Now, baseball was utterly tiring, pointless and incomprehensible. Ice hockey was scary (much like yankeeball would be, I guess), but I was thankfully exempted because I could hardly skate.

    Do you do slope skiing in Czech? I’d have been terrified of that as a kid, but thankfully Finland is a relatively flat country. Cross country is pointless enough, unless you live in the woods.

  16. says

    @lumipuna, skiing (both slope and country) and swimming were (are?) mandatory in CZ. Swimming is at least a useful skill to have, but skiing is utterly useless if one does not enjoy it. And even as an adolescent I was able to reason out that forcing someone to participate in a highly dangerous (and expensive) activity against their will is morally wrong if there is no clear benefit to counterweight that. So I was forced to participate in a sport I did not want to participate in, I was lousy at it, I almost froze to death in a blizzard because I could not keep up with others and I got bullied and ridiculed as a result (again).
    But I got always good support from my parents whatever I did or did not want to do -- for example even after I almost cut off the tip of my finger, they never discouraged me from wood carving and knife making, although they were on edge. Whether I wanted to learn bobbin lace from my mother, or paint easter eggs, or bake ginger bread, not once did my father say or even hint that such activity is “unmanly”.

  17. lumipuna says

    I was reportedly ill-motivated and quickly frustrated when my parents first tried to teach me skiing (at 3 yrs 2 months). Later in school I found cross country skiing tolerable, if pointless, just like skating.

    Swimming and bicycle riding were actually difficult for me. I never learned the bike -- and now I’m trying to manage without having to drive a car. My parents are wonderful, they always encouraged me to learn physical things but also were sensitive to my limits. As for swimming, they got me a private instructor when I was about 13, and it helped me to get into basic swimming. The few swimming lessons we had in school were useless for that purpose -- but when I could swim I started almost enjoying school swimming.

    For the private lessons, my dad came along, in part to motivate me and in part for his own excercise. We never bonded over swimming, but it was very encouraging to me -- Thanks again, Dad!

    I also hurt my finger with a wood carving knife, and freely sought some non/unmasculine hobbies.

  18. blf says

    Giliell@18, When I first watched that Runrig video, my “radar” starting pinging very early that “there’s something wrong here”, but I couldn’t put a finger (so to speak) on it. The second watching gave some circumstantial reasons for suspicion, namely the apparent lack of the distinctive hurling / camogie goal plus some untypical-for-Ireland references in the song’s lyrics — but the radar was really beeping now, albeit I still couldn’t explain why. The cited checks on Ye Pfffft! gave the hint, and then on the third(?) watching I spotted what set my radar off: In the very first clip, the sticks are not hurling but more hockey-like, quickly confirmed by checking images on the ‘Net.

    Thanks for the puzzle! I was (dimly) aware of shinty, but really know nothing whatsoever about it. And the Ye Pfffft! references mention another related game I’ve have no recollection of ever hearing of before, Welsh bando.

  19. blf says

    I put in a lot of bicycling, with (at one point) an estimated 10,000 miles per year. There are many incidents which I recall, here are two (from about the same time, both starting in Santa Cruz, California): A cycling holiday to Big Sur with two sets of friends. One set were the cyclists, the other were motorcyclists, who agreed to carry (most of) the gear / supplies. As a result, the bicyclists weren’t too loaded down, and we timed ourselves, going down some of steep hills, as vastly exceeding the speed limit of 45mph at around 70mph — confirmed by the motorcyclists, who happened to be behind us on one of the declines.

    The other was a solo ride to San Francisco of around 100km, to attend the premier(?) of a Greenpeace film around the time of the sinking of the Rainbow Warrior. I zipped up coastal Highway 1, checked into the hotel, and then off to the screening (which I vaguely recall was at the California Academy of Sciences). I didn’t know anyone there, but at the reception, a very kind lady noticed my somewhat unusual clothing and asked — I explained and, as it turned out, she “had influence” and I wound up getting a polite round of applause later on for putting in the ecologically-sound effort of cycling to the event.

  20. says

    I cycled a great deal too, and have retained a lifelong love of it. Used to regularly do trips like Santa Ana to San Juan Capistrano and the like. I cycled everywhere. Had a gorgeous, feather light 16 speed racer back in the day. I don’t think I ever stopped grieving the day a moronic 14 year old helped himself to my bike (in the garage, I was living in Redondo Beach) for a joy ride, wrecked out spectacularly, and left my bike a crumpled ruin. The snot was alright, unfortunately.

  21. blf says

    I had my own spectacular crash, with an interesting follow-up (apologies, I know I’ve told this story before): This was a bit before the incidents recounted above. I crashed at speed into a drainage ditch (a later revisit to the scene suggested I’d hit a gravel patch whilst going downhill), and woke up when being transferred from the ambulance gurney to the emergency room bed. A few cuts and scratches (I still have some scars) and a “possible mild concussion” — or as I put, “we’re not sure if you’re hurt, but if you are, it’s not serious” — and a smashed original Bell Biker helmet. (And a bent frame, the bicycle was toast.)

    I’d gotten the helmet a while before in University, after a (day?-)ride when a good friend had to slam on his brakes whilst going downhill at speed (thanks, arsehole motorist!). He went head-over-handbars, and, to this day, I still clearly remember him landing on top of his head, completely vertical, before falling over.

    He got up, brushed himself off, and was Ok. No problems, back on the bike, and completed the ride.

    He was wearing an original Bell Biker helmet, which was (now) smashed. At the time, effective bicycling helmets were new-fangled, his couldn’t have been more than a year or three-ish old.

    I got it. The next(-ish) day I went out and got my own helmet. (I’ve always worn a Bell-made bicycling helmet since then.)

    Several years after my own helmet-smashing crash, a very good friend of mine was doing the California Death Ride (a 100 mile ride encompassing five summits in the Sierra Nevada mountains near Lake Tahoe). She found herself talking to an elderly gentleman on a very nice bicycle whilst climbing up one of peaks, and discovered he was the Dr Bell of Bell Helmets fame. She mentioned my crash and thanked him for the helmet. He explained he’d invented the Biker helmet after becoming distressed at the number of brain and skull injuries suffered by bicyclists. He’d heard stories like mine, where his helmet very probably saved a bicyclist from serious injury or death, many times by that point, and was always extremely happy about it.

    THANK YOU, Dr Bell !

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