The power first revealed itself during Wimbledon, when I saw the name Martina Hingis, and it seemed to confess: I am tarnishing.
Days later, new Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson expressed interest in Dennis Rodman, and I wondered: Why did he want this odd man, sinner?
Now I see anagrams in everything. I have merely to look at a name, and its letters rearrange themselves into that person's essence. The reflex is instantaneous. The second his putt won the U.S. Open, I said, "You're a good golfer, Payne Stewart...yet wear pants."
This is not so much a power as a curse. I can no longer pick up a newspaper without stumbling upon camouflaged truths. Where others see the name Lawrence Taylor, I see a one-man Lawyer Rental Co.
So I've stopped reading periodicals. I can't say I'll miss ESPN: The Magazine, which is demographically devoted to amazing hep teens, but I will miss the SI swimsuit issue. Alas, though I am assured by colleagues that model Heidi Klum is as smart as she is beautiful, I can hardly look at her without hearing her say, "I'm like, 'Duh.' "
Naturally, I've unplugged my television. Dick Vitale is like TV acid.
Thus, I'll never see the cable channel that Brett Favre is destined to develop. Does anyone doubt for a moment that the Green Bay Packers' quarterback and former substance abuser from Kiln, Miss., will one day preside over Beer Fart TV?
The point is, your life story is encrypted in your birth certificate:
"Yes, I cart man?