The Ballad of Johnny Football

On getting what you give
Share |

With apologies to Beethoven, in January 1999 -- known by many as the The Winter of Love -- the best song ever created sang its way into the hearts of America’s youth. The song I refer to is, of course, “You Get What You Give” by The New Radicals.  And, much to Jason White’s chagrin, on Saturday, days after his 20th birthday, Johnny Manziel won the Heisman Trophy.

These are possibly unrelated, but those who consider a freshman too precocious to win college football’s biggest award would be wise to remember a now all-too-forgotten singer called -- this is a guess, the real name has been lost to history -- Johnny New Radical.

Because for an awkward generation a decade away from occupying anything, “You Get What You Give” was the Heisman Trophy, the Bednarik Award, and a catchy emotional pep talk calling for redistribution of the nation’s wealth, all blended together into one energy drink of keeping it real.

As the Internet gave rise to a weird generational sense of communal individuality, Johnny New Radical gave the young people an anthem about being yourself, while sticking it to the man; in this case our parents -- but also mall security and the ‘Bad Rich’ -- who were all conspiring together with secret meetings, at a very exclusive cigar bar, after we went to bed.

The song begins with a rallying cry for the youth to wake up, then goes on to diagnose our greatest disease (dreaming) a decade before it began to eat us alive. He then predicts the issues of today (Health insurance, lying; Big banks, buying; Etc. Etc., multiplying.), and calls out the fakery of regular Hanson, Beck Hanson, Courtney Love and Marylin Manson, before rhyming “go to your mansions” with “kick your ass in.”  Finally, despite all that peppy doom and gloom, he pleads with us not to give up. This was a sweet, bucket-hatted Tyler Durden, who had somehow endeared his way into Top 40 Radio, except more dangerous because Project Mayhem only occasionally destroyed BMWs. Johnny New Radical smashed a Mercedes-Benz every night. Then he laughed about it until he cried.

Surely the follow-up single would unite the cosmos and end human inequity once and for all; the real life fruition of the rock and roll prophecy foretold by the Wyld Stallyns.

That second hit never hit. Wikipedia claims a New Radicals song called, “Someday We’ll Know” reached No. 45 in New Zealand in 1999, but those guys are notorious liars. The truth is, New Radicals didn’t even get a Bogus Journey. A song that rebelled against all things rico and suave got a room next door to Gerardo in One Hit Wonder Purgatory, which is the worst kind of purgatory, because they always leave the door open just enough for Hope to pop her head in.

The worst part in all this was that, way back in 1999, the ability to easily carry around MP3s was expensive witchcraft. This meant that you had to wait for two songs to be released before investing hard-earned money on an album, a function of basic adolescent economics. But “You Get What You Give” was so good that the second single could have been Johnny New Radical playing a didgeridoo in a beehive factory, a duet with Carl Lewis or a series of Limp Bizkit covers. I would have bought the album either way. The first song was that good. But I made the New Radicals earn my $15.99 with a follow up. They responded by breaking up.

New Radical himself blamed the band’s dissolution on “the fatigue of traveling and getting three hours’ sleep” and called the lifestyle “boring,” Pitchfork, suggested that “staring at years of one-hit expectations, [Johnny New Radical]’s feet got icy.” Whether it was the pressure of following up or a result of genuine disillusionment, doesn’t matter. The New Radicals forever belong to 1999. In his new career, New Radical, now going by Gregg Alexander for some reason, won a Grammy writing songs for Michelle Branch. This is great for Michelle Branch, not so much for all the broke teenagers who bought stock in his band and bucket hats. But one final time, Johnny New Radical delivered a life lesson to America’s youth about fool proof investments: a moment in the sun doesn’t always equal eternal transcendence. And that sure was nice.

***

Now, Texas A&M won’t break up, despite the fact that Johnny Manziel’s 13th Grade season was so good that we call him Johnny Football. But it’s still a lot of pressure.  Society hasn’t awarded a nickname this obvious since Tom Selleck crushed dingers, and found love, in Nippon Professional Baseball. Is it cheesy? Sure. But why fight something that feels so natural? The nickname is Manziel’s bucket hat.

There were other Heisman options: some valid, some ridiculous. (Again, Jason White: You crazy, but I totally respect it, bro). It’s the Heisman Trophy, you’ll never please everyone, the player pool is too big, and, if we’re being real, they should have thrown it all away and declared a non-year because the Smartest Man Alive forgot to turn in his ballot.

The story of the 2012 college football season won’t be completely written until the first week of 2013, so it could still be about Notre Dame and Manti Te’o representing truth, justice and Playing Like A Champion Today. And Chumbawamba could have been a better one-hit wonder. Perhaps this is the Disco Lemonade talking, but did not a great philosopher once suggest that, ‘Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end’?

This could be the beginning of Te’o’s story and it could be the end of Manziel’s. It might be neither, no one knows. This is college football, and 90’s pop, not science.

Manziel doesn’t seem like a 2012 version of Lou Bega. We’ll almost certainly have a little more Johnny Football in our lives, and that’s great. He is a turbo-mode Madden ‘04 Michael Vick and you’d ban the use of him in your dorm room. His takedown of the SEC, in Texas A&M’s first season among the Southern Gentlemen Who Rule College Football, is as subversive and status quo busting as Johnny New Radical Pied Pipering all those kids through the mall, freeing the puppies from the pet store, and capturing a mall cop with a net.

But whether he goes the way of New Radicals or Beethoven -- who actually had more hits than the ominous tune the dog barked at in the movie -- they’ll talk Johnny Football 2K12 at the Downtown Athletic Club for years to come.

Just like how in 2006, a dog year after New Radicals ruled the radio, TIME Magazine asked non-Heisman Voter The Edge if there are any songs he wished he wrote. He chose “Wonderwall” and “You Get What You Give.”

Strangely, we don’t know who The Edge, or even Bono, picked to win the Heisman, but we do know that 474 voters thought it was a good decision to reward Manziel for today and worry about tomorrow tomorrow.

To wait for Johnny Football to release his second single seems foolish. Not everyone gets a sequel. If two hits were easy, Archie Griffin (who has two Heismans) and The Presidents of the United States of America (who have two hit singles) wouldn’t be special.

No matter what happens, Johnny Manziel will forever be the first freshman to win the Heisman.  And eventually we can tell our grandkids about the penultimate year of the BCS era: a simpler time, when Notre Dame played Alabama for the title and we called a 19-year-old kid Johnny Football without smirking. Then I’ll tell them about the winter of ‘99, the last snowfall before Woodstock ‘99 and the Willenium, when Johnny New Radical was judge, jury, and executioner, but God still found time to fly in for the trial.


Share |

Comments

The truth is, New Radicals didn’t even get a Bogus Journey.online marketing agency

The truth is, New Radicals didn’t even get a Bogus Journey.online marketing agency

This was a sweet, bucket-hatted Tyler Durden, who had somehow endeared his way into Top 40 Radio, except more dangerous because Project Mayhem only occasionally destroyed BMWs
chinese porcelain dolls

It is the strong resources generator. I have unlimited crystals and gold Marvel future fight. lake ville

law enforcement You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. I was exactly searching for. Thanks for such post and please . Bail Bonding Now

Johnny New Radical gave the young people an anthem about being yourself, while sticking it to the man; in this case our parents -- but also mall security and the ‘Bad Rich’ -- who were all conspiring together with secret meetings, at a very exclusive cigar bar, after we went to bed.
small business SEO service

This is very interesting content! I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your points and have come to the conclusion that you are right about many of them. You are great.ted 2 movietube

With apologies to Beethoven, in January 1999 -- known by many as the The Winter of Love -- the best song ever created sang its way into the hearts of America’s youth. The song I refer to is, of course, “You Get What You Give” by The New Radicalsmotor murah

Johnny New Radical gave the young people an anthem about being yourself, while sticking it to the man; in this case our parents -- but also mall security and the ‘Bad Rich’ -- who were all conspiring together with secret meetings, at a very exclusive cigar bar, after we went to bed.
Top Business

I seem to be forward to more reliable articles and I think we all wish to thank so many good articles, blog to share with us
Mike Rednour's website

This is also a very good post which I really enjoyed reading. It is not every day that I have the possibility to see something like this.. http://languageofdesires.com

A very awesome blog post. We are really grateful for your blog post. combat, law enforcement You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. I was exactly searching for. Thanks for such post and please keep it up. Great work.sons nursery sleeping equipment

I enjoyed the coursework, the presentations, the fellow students, and the professors. And since my company reimbursed . Mike Rednour

I am for the first time here. I found this board and I in finding It truly helpful & it helped me out a lot. Echo
back

automotive, digital television, Internet, medical, semiconductor and wireless communication technologies.
discover more

The Company operates in a variety of markets including automotive, digital television, Internet, medical, semiconductor and wireless communication technologies. Click this link

Usually I visit your blogs and get updated through the information you include but today’s blog would be the most appreciable. Balboa Concepts Blog

We keep up with the latest techniques of building and have qualified tradesmen to ensure that your job/project is carried out safely. We also make sure that we keep to the highest standards on projects and everyone who works for us is health & safety trained.
Clash of Clans Mod Apk

Going to graduate school was a positive decision for me. I enjoyed the coursework, the presentations, the fellow students, and the professors. And since my company reimbursed 100% of the tuition, the only cost that I had to pay on my own was for books and supplies. Otherwise, I received a free master’s degree. All that I had to invest was my time. Obsession Phrases

This is also a very good post which I really enjoyed reading. It is not every day that I have the possibility to see something like this.. Japanese car exporter

this website and I think that your web blog is real interesting and has got circles of fantastic information.,, numerology love

This was a sweet, bucket-hatted Tyler Durden, who had somehow endeared his way into Top 40 Radio, except more dangerous because Project Mayhem only occasionally destroyed BMWs. Johnny New Radical smashed a Mercedes-Benz every night. Then he laughed about it until he cried.
alquiler de furgonetas madrid

Heya, this article looks very nice, can't wait to find out more. Well, take a look at this site and see the best Melbourne parking slots. How to Lose Arm Fat

while some activity propels at lower unusual rates; they acknowledge activity on the age term. Regardless, what does one going to like for the best Aussie bicycle progresses? Read added to apperceive more; golden rule

So luck to come across your excellent blog. Your blog brings me a great deal of fun.. Good luck with the site...best whitening cream

I am just pretty happy to sign up ones own guestbook these days,Your own feedback and listed below are excellent in my opinion,incidentally I should say also definitely will teach some great supplements for your needs every.scented candle

411.ca is a Canadian owned and operated online directory that does what few other online search directories do – focus solely on helping Canadians find people and businesses in their neighborhood.Click here

Took me time to understand all of the comments, but I seriously enjoyed the write-up. It proved being really helpful to me and Im positive to all of the commenters right here! Its constantly nice when you can not only be informed, but also entertained! I am certain you had enjoyable writing this write-up.parts for sewing machine

Great Southern Coins is the premiere silver maple leaf coins dealer. Shop with confidence and assurance that all silver and gold coins are backed with a US guarantee shipped direct to your door quickly. Visit them online to add to your collection or start one today. Dr Oz Cambogia Garcinia

Very informative post! There is a lot of information here that can help any business get started with a successful social networking campaign!Yishun Street 51 EC

Kylan Schilling is a Canadian businessman and entrepreneur who has successfully founded a number of companies, including a computer repair business and an online retail business.Visit this site

Ah, this is just classic work from you. You've once again proved today why you are one of the best in this business. Thanks for always doing good work. Masajistas Paisas

Great content material and great layout. Your website deserves all of the positive feedback it’s been getting.Flights To Guatemala

I want you to thank for your time of this wonderful read!!! I definately enjoy every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff of your blog a must read blog!!!!300 hrs Yoga TTC in India

Great content material and great layout. Your website deserves all of the positive feedback it’s been getting. special education 

This content is written very well. Your use of formatting when making your points makes your observations very clear and easy to understand. Thank you.

Los Angeles drug detox

This content is written very well. Your use of formatting when making your points makes your observations very clear and easy to understand. Thank you.

Los Angeles drug detox

wouldn't output be greater than if they were able to distribute it at marginal cost instead of equal since marginal cost is zero.
assisted living las vegas

This is very interesting content! I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your points and have come to the conclusion that you are right about many of them. You are great.diabetic life insurance

the Bednarik Award, and a catchy emotional pep talk calling for redistribution of the nation’s wealth, all blended together into one energy drink of keeping it real.Smallville Stream

price discriminate, wouldn't output be greater than if they were able to distribute it at marginal cost instead of equal since marginal cost is zero.
flood damage cleanup

I hope that it doesnt disappoint me as much as this one. I mean, I know it was my choice to read, but I actually thought youd have something interesting to say. How To Naturally Relieve Constipation

It's really nice and meanful. it's really cool blog. Linking is very useful thing.you have really helped lots of people who visit blog and provide them usefull information.protect your income

Great tips and very easy to understand. This will definitely be very useful for me when I get a chance to start my blog.http://www.KBGoldReview.com/karatbars-scam/

bucket-hatted Tyler Durden, who had somehow endeared his way into Top 40 Radio, except more dangerous because Project Mayhem only occasionally destroyed BMWs. Johnny New Radical smashed a Mercedes-Benz every night. Then he laughed about it until he cried.
escort beirut girls

I discovered your site ideal for me. It consists of wonderful and useful posts. I've read many of them and also got so much from them. In my experience, you do the truly amazing.Truly i'm impressed out of this publish
list academy

Purgatory, which is the worst kind of purgatory, because they always leave the door open just enough for Hope to pop her head in.Wedding photography adelaide

Thank you for sharing information & Obtain the best Packers and Movers service for making your relocation smooth and tension Free High Class escorts in London

I simply got to this phenomenal website until recently. When i was in fact captured with all the bit of means exhibiting here. Large thumbs way up in making this sort of fantastic web site webpage!car title loans

Where did u come up with the information on this posting?I have read a few of the articles on your website now, outdoor heavy bag