One of my wife’s guilty television pleasures is a show called “Bridezillas” which airs on the WE channel. It’s a reality show that shines a light on one or more prospective brides in the days leading up to their wedding.
I happen to despise this show, not out of some misogynistic hatred of women or out of disrespect for the tension that many women feel as their wedding approaches, but more out of a profound dislike of shows that appear to reward anti-social behavior. The point is, that if WE ever looked for someone to host a “Bridezillas” marathon, I would be the wrong person because I don’t like the show.
As I was watching the end of the WNBA playoff game between Detroit and Indiana Tuesday night on ESPN2, I heard the play-by-play announcer toss back to the studio to Nancy Lieberman and to a man named Erik Kuselias. For those who haven’t had the misfortune of hearing Kuselias work, he has hosted a NASCAR show on ESPN television, but is best known for hosting a radio show called “The Sports Bash,” which aired in the afternoon on ESPN radio.
During the course of that show, Kuselias, who reportedly is an attorney, appealed to the lowest common denominator by pushing every emotional button he could, insulting teams, players and fans at every turn. On more than one occasion I heard Kuselias spew invective about the legitimacy of both the WNBA and women’s basketball in general. He didn’t quite go for the standard male talk show putdown of women’s basketball, the one that insinuates that the sport isn’t worth watching because all the players are lesbians, but he came damned close.
You can imagine, then, my shock and bewilderment, then, to see Kuselias sitting at a desk hosting a women’s basketball telecast. Now, it may be possible that Kuselias has had some kind of transformation and has either become a fan of the sport, or at least tolerant, but I doubt it. More likely, this was just a chance to sharpen his hosting skills and before a prime time audience.
Look, I don’t expect most men to like or even appreciate women’s basketball, and that’s fine; different strokes and all that. But I sure as shootin’ don’t expect ESPN to put a man who has publicly expressed a disdain for the sport on the air hosting it. It’s as incongruous as having someone who dislikes the NFL host a Sunday football pregame show, or me hosting a “Bridezillas” marathon.