If an athlete uses means (steroids, doping, human growth hormones) that are unfair to other athletes, it’s considered cheating, correct? Lance Armstrong was really pedaling that damn bike, but there was an illegal genetic rocket booster hidden somewhere inside of his system. Yankee wankee Alex Rodriguez hit a crucial double against the Phillies in the 2009 World Series. Guess what? He may have been cheating all along with his pinstripe crony, Melky Cabrera. Although cheaters never win, they sure do win a lot in the sports world. But not in the music world, right?

Dear Beyonce,
Lip-Synching is cheating; plain and simple. You are going through the motions. You are purposely deceiving audiences and vice-presidents by pretending the words that are coming out of your mouth are genuine and full of life. They are not. We can now add you to the unflattering list of backing track abusers like Ashlee Simpson, Britney Spears and Jennifer Lopez. Now, I know this whole inauguration lip-synching situation isn’t as catastrophic as the Milli Vinilli expose of the early ’90s (Rob and Fab never had the pipes to sing “Blame it on the Rain” in the first place), but the timing could not be any worse for you, Mrs. Z. You’re about to perform at the halftime show at The Super Bowl this Sunday. I also hope you realize that the director of the Marine Corps Band (whom you “performed with last week”) suggested that you were simply too busy preparing for your Super Bowl halftime show to dedicate the appropriate amount of rehearsal time for the inauguration.
You’re too busy to rehearse our national anthem? You’re focusing on old Destiny’s Child cuts instead of singing, really singing “The Star Banged Banner” for the inauguration of the President of The United States of America? I’m going to use the word facepalm here, because that is all I can say.
Best of luck with the half time show and try not to think about the millions and millions of people dissecting your every move. Don’t poke fun at yourself with a cute choreographed lip-synching malfunction and don’t overact how out of breath you may be from your wild dance numbers. A wise woman told me once; the more backup dancers you have usually means the less talent you have. So when you sing “Survivor” this Super Bowl Sunday, sing it like you mean it.

You’re here for the commercials?
Maybe you don’t really care about the score of the game or who’s playing; all you care about are the latest 30 second clips of cute polar bears sharing sugary, carbonated soft drinks or talking babies giving you stock tips. If you are going to show up at someone’s Super Bowl party, at least know the basics rules of the game. Your life may depend on it.
There are four quarters: 15 minutes each. The 49ers will wear their home red uniforms, meaning the Ravens will wear their road white jerseys. Touchdowns (football crosses the plane of the end zone) are six points, field goals (football ball is kicked through the goal posts) are three, a safety (a ball carrier is tackled in his own end zone) and a 2pt conversion are two and an extra point (additional point scored after scoring a touchdown) is one. The team that scores the most points wins.
If you’re not interested in either the commercials or the big game, Robocop is streaming on Netflix.

Here’s what’s in my headphones this week: Ryan Adams Gold Deluxe Edition (Lost Highway) 2001

Send email to tgraham@timesshamrock.com

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