Jocks Cede Role Model Status To NerdsRemember in the olden days when pro athletes and Olympians would grace our soft drink ads, urging us to guzzle the nutritionally barren sugar water in order to be a champion like them, cognitive dissonance be damned? Yea, if you listen to athletes now, you are old and laughable. The new (and far more appropriate!) face of Dr. Pepper is a 21-year-old kid who makes a quarter of a million bucks playing video games. Why I never! Lazy kids nowadays! There is simply no way not to sound like some parody of Dave Barry making "these kids!" jokes while writing about this development. But what you need to know is that if you have skills with a Wii controller, you better watch out for the geek paparazzi:
“It’s not like I’m Tom Cruise or Usher walking down the street or anything like that, but it’s gotten to the point where you have to look your best when you go out,” [Pro gamer Tom] Taylor said. “I carry a Sharpie around, like Peyton Manning.”
And now, also like Peyton Manning, he's a ubiquitous face urging us to purchase more consumer products! There is in fact a "Major League Gaming" league for pro video game players. Weird.
“What’s really going on here is for tens of millions of young men, the aspiration to be a pro gamer is the new dream of sports stardom,” he said.
[Outraged reference to how such a thing did not exist when I was playing Nintendo]. The stunning implication here: in the near future, athletes could become nerds. Computer geeks: prepare for payback. [NYT; pic via]