I wasn't prepared for this — but isn't that how life goes? We're never fully prepared for the moments that change us forever.
There I was, just scrolling through my Twitter feed like any other day.
Bronco should be fired.
Taysom Hill's coming back for his senior year.
Weber State is cheating on math tests.
Jimmer got another "DNP" last night.
Bronco should be fired.
And that's when I saw it. It was just sitting there, glistening in the digital glow of my laptop screen.
A video. But not just any video. Based on the thumbnail that Twitter was displaying to me, it appeared to feature a wide-eyed Bronco Mendenhall and a dark-haired Dave Rose — both as yet physically unblemished by the pressures and stresses of leading Division I athletic programs.
I had to click on it. I couldn't not click.
What happened next is best summed up by the following tweet:
OH MY GOODNESS WHAT IS HAPPENING HERE WHY DAVE WHY WOULD YOU DO THIS TO US I EXPECT THIS FROM BRONCO BUT NOT YOU WHY http://t.co/dR4BLLqGmI— Steve Pierce (@PostJimmer) November 19, 2014
The thumbnail didn't lie. The video did feature much younger and spryer versions of coaches Mendenhall and Rose, as well as the legendary presence of a wizened LaVell Edwards. The gang appeared to be shooting a commercial for the Utah clothing retailer (and the world's leading purveyor of two-pant suits), Mr. Mac — and this video appeared to be the outtakes.
Now, it should be said up front that college sports coaches are not professional actors and, thus, should not be expected to perform as such. That would be unrealistic and unfair. Nobody expects a virtuoso performance in a commercial for a local store whose primary clientele consists of pimply-faced Mormon kids looking for unfashionable, ill-fitting suits for mission service. There are no Oscars up for grabs here.
But. But. BUT.
Holy awkward, Batman! Even by coaches-as-actors standards, this Mr. Mac business is really, really uncomfortable stuff. As I watched it, I could feel my very innermost soul cringing with each successive line of dialogue uttered. I think I took one step closer to death with each take viewed. It's that bad — and in a certain way that only the Internet can truly understand, that's what makes it so good.
The video does, indeed, show a variety of incredibly clumsy takes — "the editior's cuts" (sic) — from the shooting of said Mr. Mac commercial before ending by showing how all of the awkwardness was cut into an (unsurprisingly) equally awkward final cut.
The ad's concept revolves around newly hired coaches Mendenhall and Rose clumsily (and that's putting in kindly) "discussing" the difficulties of adapting to life as a head coach and how Mr. Mac's questionably tailored suits have allegedly helped them cope. Meanwhile, Edwards weirdly lurks in the background, checking out belts with such intense fascination that one can only assume he's devising a plan to use one of them to violent ends in order to help him escape having to listen to the young bucks butcher their dialogue another 100 times.
Eventually, we get a smash cut to Edwards, now no longer quite so interested in devices that both hold your pants up and double as a lethal weapon, as he breaks the fourth wall and sardonically chides the "rookies" in a way only a curmudgeonly legend can do to the chumps who got stuck trying to live up to his legacy. "Suckers. Now, where's my second pair of pants?"
It's truly a glorious thing to behold. It will make you feel things you never thought you could feel during your time on this mortal coil — mostly a sense of paralyzing unease that can only bring you closer to understanding God's perspective as He watches us bumble around and continually screw things up down here. If that's not the purpose of this video, I have no earthly idea what other outcome it could possibly serve — because it certainly didn't get me excited about bad suits.