I was only moderately ticked off when I heard last week that Ryan Seacrest would be hosting the Super Bowl pregame show on Fox. Seemed like, oh, I don't know, having Lou Ferrigno host an episode of America's Next Top Model.
But it didn't bother me too much because I knew I'd be watching little, if any, pregame coverage and because it quickly occurred to me that there are probably better things to get moderately ticked off about. (Like what, you ask? Like the fact that the word "vinegar" was misspelled on the menus at not one but two fine dining establishments we visited this weekend. I know, tough word for chef types -- hard to find on any bottles of VINEGAR that might be hanging out in the kitchen where you work.)
As it happened, I did catch a few minutes of the show yesterday afternoon. It was a few minutes that I might have enjoyed under other circumstances, because there was a live interview with (shameless cross-promotion alert) Hugh Laurie, star of the best show on television and a guy who is usually good for some smart, sarcastic remarks during interviews. Unfortunately, in case I didn't mention it, the pregame show was hosted by Ryan Seacrest. After establishing that Laurie had never before seen a football game, Seacrest got Laurie to tell the viewing audience that Laurie's dad had won an Olympic gold medal in 1948 in a rowing event called coxless pairs.
Luckily for us, that prompted a reminder of just how dim-witted the Idol host is. Of course, as soon as the phrase "coxless pairs" was spoken, Seacrest broke into a moronic grin like he was a third-grader who had just heard a fart joke -- or, I guess, a joke about coxless pairs. Lacking the good sense to just leave it alone, and without the wit to say something tastelessly interesting (I'm thinkin' "sounds more like a women's sport" might have been doable), he started to make some inane remark. Brilliant, Beavis. I'm guessing you also ask, "How's the weather up there?" any time you meet someone taller than 6-foot-5.
Thankfully, Laurie cut him off by telling him that he'd already heard every joke that could be made about coxless pairs, and the awkward moment passed. That is, until the next several awkward moments when Seacrest repeatedly referred to Laurie as "Dr. House" -- clue for Seacrest: that's a character on TV -- and asked the guy who had just professed his utter lack of interest in football to predict who'd win the game. Now, that's quality television.