Sunday, May 17, 2015

The "Deflator" nickname: A Jedi mind trick for trolls

Aside from soundly debunking the dubious science of the Wells Report,, the Patriots' 20,000-word wrecking ball against the NFL's case, also reveals the meaning behind Jim McNally's famous "come out the deflator" text message to John Jastremski on 5/14/2014. Jastremski, you see, was thin and looking to bulk up ("inflate") and McNally was obese and looking to trim down ("deflate"). McNally earned himself a nickname in the process. The reaction was loud.

One critic after another lined up to reject the explanation: "Ridiculous," they said. "Embarrassing". "Lame". "Stupid". I've read dozens of critiques--maybe 100--and they all have one thing in common.

They all think it's stupid, and none of them can tell us why.

After all, if your 5-year-old tells you he didn't eat any donuts, and he's got a spray of white powder down the front of his shirt and a jelly mustache, you might laugh and tell him he should wash up before saying things like that. It's such an obvious lie that it's actually funny. Not the case here.

Is it really that ridiculous that a big, fat guy like McNally would look down at his bloated stomach and have the word "deflate" come to mind? Deep down, the haters must know that this is a lot less silly than they make it out to be. If it was that dumb, people would say why, and no one is.

But by now, you guys know me; I take nothing for granted. So I got on Google and spent about two minutes searching for "deflate" references. That's two minutes, as in 120 seconds. And even though most of that time was spent wading through Deflategate stories, I still found 15 references to weight loss that used a form of the word "deflate".


I even made a fun little meme about it. See below.

You haters aren't stupid. You know the science is shaky at best. Even under the Wells Report's scenario, an imperceptible amount of air was let out of the footballs. Ultimately, there will be a battle, and spreadsheet-wielding geeks will go to war over tiny puffs of air. In the end, the only thing that will matter will be that there was a war in the first place, that the two sides are irreconcilable, and that there is not enough evidence to prove wrongdoing. That will leave the text messages.

You know how much is riding on that "Deflator" text. You know that the case would be dead without it, and now, it's looking like the case may be dead with it. If someone comes up with a plausible explanation for the nickname, the Patriots will win. Again.

So you dismiss the nickname with the best sarcastic sneer you can muster, reject it out of hand, not because it doesn't make sense (it does), not because no one's ever used the word that way before (they have), but simply because you're desperate. You repeat your rejection, possibly with a wave of your hand, like Obi-Wan might do, in the hopes that we'll fall prey to your amateur Jedi Mind Trick.

And once again, a Patriot is too smart for you.

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