I've been blogging about MLS since KC fans cramped into minor league baseball parks and the LA Galaxy couldn't fill a stadium with light for ninety minutes. Thus, as the vanguard of the flippant Eurosnob armchair analysts, I have considerable experience looking down my nose at your beloved league. Did you notice that? How I used the second person possessive to distance myself from MLS and tie you to it (and italics for emphasis)? Did that use of second person possessive lead you to foresee a criticism of MLS that places me and other leagues on a pedestal? Now, has my own blog post/meta-analysis caused you to grow bored and click elsewhere in search of amusing cat videos (soooo 2009)? Are these questions testing your 21st century patience? Would you rather be retweeting the recent pin of a tumblr "tumbl" of interest? Will I ever get to the point?
Yes. I went to MLSsoccer.com. It is much improved since FakeSigi embarrassed them. They embed videos using XHTML. However, tech specs aside, I noticed a major problem with MLS goals. Unlike Europe, they all look the same. Here's why.
Of course, all goals are the same in a sense. Dude kicks or heads ball into rectangular receptacle comprised of net and metal. Unlike everyday placement of trash into net-less metal receptacle, hands generally not used. Also, much elation and depression usually follow said placement of sphere into receptacle, depending on color of scarf worn by fan present. Still, the MLS website's videos of goals put the "uggghh" in mundane.
Here's a screen grab of one such "goal video":
The bluescreen of computer death. Mr. Paperclip. Siri. XP's hourglass. Sometimes, icons and apps fuel hatred among the tech-addicted masses. Did you see the little black box in the center? In the case of MLSsoccer, the flashing clockwise white stripes provoke upset stomachs, rolled eyeballs, and sighs. After all, we only live so many milliseconds. Fans looking to watch goals belong to the cult of the instant gratification. We don't even have time to read Deadspin's 3 paragraph summary of a half-hour Sportscenter - we just glance at the tweet plug.
Still, I am resilient and tried to find another MLS goal. Maybe not all MLS goals were so static, so predictable, so......white stripes flashing clockwise in a black box-y. Here's what I found:
Obviously, there is only one explanation for this phenomenon: the old MLS website used the now dead Microsoft Flash alternative known as "Silverlight." What happens when things die in the soccerverse, like Hungarian footballers? Their immortal soul lingers. Yes, I suspect that the soul of Silverlight haunts the MLS website and is cruelly exacting revenge upon us all. Like Hamlet's dad, we're all confused and just trying to move on with our lives, but Silverlight's got some axes to grind.
Plus, that clockwise white stripe box looks like those white globes that always appear in ghost hunter shows and poorly framed family photographs. From beyond the grave, Silverlight howls at the moon and messes up our video-viewing pleasure.
Of course, my ghost theory is the most charitable explanation. If a ghost is not haunting MLSsoccer, then the alternative is that every single MLS goal looks the exact same. I don't really recall seeing that black box with white stripes flashing clockwise at the last MLS game I attended, but it may have been a 0-0 draw.
Until MLS can either produce distinct goals or rid the website of these ghosts, I will continue to sip cognac early Saturday mornings as I watch the EPL and be "soccered out" by midday when MLS games start. It's the only logical response to this logically explained phenomena.