And Now, The Raybag
1:07 PM EDT on July 14, 2022
Time for the only edition of Ray Ratto's Raybag. Got something on your mind? Don't you dare email Ray. Today, Ray's taking old questions from the Funbag inbox and new questions from staffers.
[Rays] Week – Was it unanimous? Who was for it? Who was against it? What was Ratto’s take?
It was not unanimous, but was agreed upon in a meeting in which the prevailing sentiment was "Anything but that Senators Week shit again. So yeah, fine, whatever. Can we go now? My dog needs to go to the library." I did not object to the concept, not because I thought it was a grand idea but because I wanted Dead Animals Week, and everyone else thought making Comrade Imbler do 50 blogs in five days was unreasonable. You will find that as the week has gone on, fewer and fewer of us have continued to think it was a good idea, and the logo in particular is already a haunting reminder of what happens in staff meetings. In hindsight I should have raised the notion of Defunct Teams Week, but since I am alone in caring about such historical arcana, it would have died the death it deserved.
Who is your pick for best facial hair of all time?
Duane Allman, because mastering this chin-powered look hasn't been successfully carried out since this guy and to my knowledge by nobody since, though I must admit haven't looked through all the January 6 files.
What is your take on letting dogs pee/mark in other yards while on a walk?
I don't let our dog pee in other people's yards. I demand it. If the neighbors wanted urine-free environments in their gardens, they should have put up sharpened poison-tipped bamboo stakes like we did.
I used to be a New Jersey Nets fan pretty much until they moved to Brooklyn. I was also an Oakland Raider fan, but now they’re in Vegas. Now I’m also an Oakland A’s fan but even their future is uncertain. How can I remain loyal to my teams when they keep leaving me?
Let's break this down. First, loyalty to any team is utter, total, and comprehensive bullshit, because the team looks upon you only as a wallet with shoulders upon which to drape a $259 hoodie. If you reassigned your allegiance to another team, they wouldn't notice let alone care, except maybe that cloth-eared minimum-wage clod in Season Tickets who will email you six times asking why you haven't made your deposit for next year. Second, you should try a new team every season for variety, so you can get a better feel for the number of ways those malignant hyenas will shatter your will to go on. Third, if you want maximum benefit out of your fandom, choose a team with no hope to ever accomplish anything so you don't have to bother with untidy messes like expectation. This is known as the Patty Postulate, after our beloved Comrade Redford who has kept people away from him for years by supporting the Sacramento Kings. You used to be able to do this with the Los Angeles Angels as well, but then they fucked up and wasted Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani to the point where most people hate the Angels, as opposed to the Kings, of whom they are utterly indifferent.
What’s the best thing about having Ray Ratto as a colleague?
I'm not an expert here. I've known the guy for decades and in considering the question, I am left with the words of the Scottish comedian-god Frankie Boyle describing Guns N’ Roses fans as "morons whom I would leave inside a burning house to save a pig." I would actually leave this to someone else on the Defector Conga Line Of Inertia (Comrade Ley can decide whom he needs to punish most for this task), though it should be said that as a colleague I imagine I make myself tolerable by never bothering you with requests for money, companionship, social interaction, or even acknowledgement. Every time someone is described as a misanthrope, I get a check for $2.76. Hey, it's a living.
Which commissioner is the least bad?
That's like asking which of 20 unwatered potted palms sorted in a line should die last. Commissioners are mostly glorified junior lawyers doing the nauseating bidding of billionaires whose only real human attribute is the fact that they are flammable, so I can’t even muster a fleeting nanosecond of sympathy for Roger Goodell having to answer for the existence of Danny Snyder, or Rob Manfred having to lie to Don Van Natta Jr. that he doesn't actually hate baseball (in fact, he regards it with the same reverence he would for doctored heroin, but that's Van Natta's problem, not mine). The NBA has worked harder to make Adam Silver seem almost noble, with the compliance of NBA media people who still wrongly credit him with leading the charge to oust Donny (The Fightin' Slumlord) Sterling, but I suppose this is just a matter of time and circumstance. He will do something hideous at the insistence of Jimmy Dolan, and he will revealed as the time-serving sycophant he and his fellow commissioners must be to keep their well-paying but puke-spattered gigs.
Our cat just shit in the bathtub because he's an asshole and the smell instantly filled the whole house. We also have 2 dogs and each has accidentally shit in the house at least once over the years, but whether it was runny or solid the dog shits don't compare to the overwhelming smell coming off this little cat turd, which is about the size of my pinky finger. This got me wondering, what's the smelliest shit in the animal kingdom?
What separates a good meal from a great one?
We have a number of fine chefs, cooks, grillers, and even chicken roasters (Comrade Kahler) on staff, and my gourmand certificate has been lost by the DMV, so my answer would be based on the demand rather than the supply end. One, a quality fork is always a fine start unless your favorite restaurant serves its comestibles trough-style. Two, a server who doesn't ask five times, "How's your meal?" If we were unhappy, we would either deposit it down your restaurant-issue black Levi's or leave the customary saliva-soaked tip. Three, dining companions who don't explain in tortuous detail what they taste in the polenta if you yourself didn't order the polenta. Four, balsamic vinegar kept separate from olive oil for dipping. We get that they don't commingle well, Skippy, but three drops of vinegar for every ladleful of olive oil is obnoxious. And five, a red wine so purple that you would imagine a Minnesota Viking fell asleep in the glass. Oh, and quality companions, though eating alone can often achieve the same effect.
What would be the best sports to play/watch in the low-gravity environment of the Moon? Basketball would have sweet dunks, but hockey would have people checked into outer space.
Golf, if the players were forced to walk after every shot. Pole vaulting, because there'd be no need for a landing pit. Beer pong, just to watch the competitors try to catch the floating drinks out of the air. And really any sport with an owners' box because I just read this and imagine the fun we could derive from watching the commissioners try to cope without helmets.
How many non-former Deadspin people work at Defector and do the former Deadspinners have their own "cool clique" of gossip and jokes that they only share among themselves?
In our current iteration, there is Comrade Wang, our benevolent overlord, and Comrade Kuhn, his loyal aide; max-contract signings Comrades Ellis and Kahler; our newest signings Comrades Imbler and Xu (our internia maxima); Comrade Flax (in absentia); and the squalid laundry basket typing this now, who thanks to corporate machinations unknown to him was never actually on staff at Deadspin. Everyone else gets points for quitting or being fired from the hate-fueled mothership that was the USS Spanfeller and as original Politburo members have pride of place over the latecomers. The newbies (or as we are known, Them) are never allowed in the cool kids' meetings because we haven't been given the secret password to the Brooklyn treehouse where all the shit gets done. As Comrade Petchesky once said, "Inside jokes don't make themselves. Now fuck right off and type some more, prole."
Was Bill Russell any good?
He was and is a fucking god to anyone who pays attention to anything. He redefined defense, won more championships than anyone else, did this in the racially backwards version of Boston in which he lived, was the most socially aware athlete of the last 65 years, plus he kicked Wilt Chamberlain's ass in nearly every important moment of their decade-long duel, and since Wilt Chamberlain was the most dominant athlete in any sport ever, Bill Russell was better than that. All these young punks who want to talk about how much the old days sucked comprehend nothing that hasn't happened before Better Call Saul, and you should hate them all with the white-hot fervor of a Bessemer furnace. They suck.
Yeah here's my question: Where's my licensing fee for this?
I only know that the vicious pit viper Petchesky assigned this to me, so any royalties you are due will have to be collected elsewhere. The handbook does say that once you turn in the requisite 19 forms in quintriplicate and in Cyrillic for our accounting department in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, you are entitled to be paid in Dogecoin. There is a deadline, though, and it is yesterday at 39 p.m. UTC. But if you're actually asking me for money, fall down a dry well. There's your goddamned Rays Week right there.