During last night’s Canucks game in Nashville, Canucks broadcaster and colour guy John Garrett made a startling on-air confession. It was clear that he was burdened, that he had some sort of dark secret festering just under the surface. I like to imagine that Garrett turned to John Shorthouse, took a deep breath to gather himself, then mustering the courage admitted to his broadcast partner and the world: "I am a burger, you know."
The entire exchange, which in typical fashion occurred while the Canucks held possession in the offensive zone, went like this:
Garrett: I’m a burger, you know…
Shorty: You’re a burger?
Garrett: I am a burger affishohnadoh!
John Garrett’s habit of talking about food during the game has crossed the line from being a silly, unfocussed compulsion and has entered the realm of "deliberate sideshow." Don’t believe me, just check John Shorthouse’s web bio on Sportsnet, which, includes this telling tidbit:
Other career highlights include caddying for Peter Jacobsen, introducing John Garrett to Five Guys Burgers and Fries, and carrying Dan Murphy to victory in the Marine Drive Potlatch Golf Tournament.
In fairness, Five Guys is super delicious and most Canucks fans seem to enjoy Garrett’s oft-expressed love of Kraft products, junk-food and Pizza Hut. For curmudgeonly types like myself – who, get this, prefer a broadcast team to call a fair, insightful game – the act has become self-parody. While, John Garrett seems like the world’s nicest dude, and I’d probably enjoy sharing a meal with him, he’s just not even trying to talk about the game anymore.
Garrett doesn’t just love a good, greasy hamburger – he loves to corrupt otherwise healthy food with an array of disgusting dips and toppings. Here’s what he said for instance about Shreddies: "I like Shreddies. You can add sugar." What sort of reason is that for liking something? You might as well go all out: "I like murder. You can add sugar." Yes, yes you can.
Garrett has also gone on and on about Cheese-Whiz, a substance which (along with Mountain Drew) is the lowest form of edible substance on the planet. It’s absurd enough for Cheese-Whiz to be broached as a subject during a hockey broadcast, it’s even worse that Garrett has described the martian velveeta atrocity as being "really good on celery." Celery! That’s right kids, when your parents tell you to eat your greens – remind them to add that potent orangey mixture of saturated fat and sodium first.
And don’t even think for a second about giving Garrett his Kraft Dinner without "a little bit of ketchup," or else he will literally eat you. Actually he’ll just eat the KD, "even without ketchup it’s good stuff."
Look a hockey broadcast is a stupid place to discuss crappy food, but I don’t really care about Garrett encouraging the consumption of junk – too each their own. What gets me is the total irrelevance. We’re at the point where Sportsnet’s producers should think about convincing referees to hold the game up for five minutes when Garrett goes off. In the future, just let him finish his random soliloquy about the virtues of corn syrup and continue to coach Vancouverites on the fastest ways to clog their arteries, and when he’s done – get on with the game.
Last night, Garrett was admitting to being a hamburger while the Canucks controlled the puck in the Preds zone. A month ago in St. Louis he was waxing poetic about KD as Brian Elliot made a save and the St. Louis Blues iced the puck. We’re left to wonder, what will be going on in the game the next time Garrett describes the proper way to butter-marinate your Big Mac?