It's not often that a man's career jumps the shark in front of the entire planet:
The Miss Universe pageant ended on an uncomfortable note Sunday night when host Steve Harvey announced the wrong winner, then had to return to the stage to make the correction after the first runner up already had been crowned and was receiving applause.
Oy. It's like watching a natural disaster strike live, on camera, in real time. It makes you wince your eyes into your brain. It makes you curl your toes right out of their sockets. It makes you wonder if Harvey heaved up his dinner right on the back-stage area floor when he realized he was going to have to go back out there and reverse the decision. It was his Bill Buckner moment.
Bill Buckner was a Major League first baseman for twenty-two seasons (1969-1990) for five different teams. He was an all-star. He won a batting title in 1980. He never made it to Cooperstown, but he was one of the better first basemen to ever play the game. And if that dribbler down the first base line in the tenth inning of Game Six of the 1986 World Series hadn't rolled between Buckner's legs to cost the Boston Red Sox their first championship in sixty-eight years (for which they'd have to wait another eighteen), he might be known for any of those accomplishments.
But he isn't. He's known for this....
....and nothing else.
Same as Jackie Smith....
....who cost his team, the Dallas Cowboys, a chance to win Super Bowl XIII in overtime.
Same as Colin Kaepernick....
....who not only blew his best and final chance to get back to the Super Bowl, but may have destroyed his career and an entire NFL franchise in the process.
It isn't fair (well, it kind of is in Kaepernick's case, but I digress....) for a man to be graded on one disastrous play, one humiliating moment, for all time. But it happens. And not just on the diamond or the gridiron or the court. Just ask Steve Harvey.
Harvey announced that Miss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez Arevalo was the winner, and she received the Miss Universe Crown and sash. As she was standing waving before the cheering crowd, Harvey walked back on stage, clearly uncomfortable.
"I have to apologize. The first runner-up is Colombia."
Miss Philippines Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach looked confused. Unsure, she walked to the front of the stage and stood beside Miss Colombia who was still wearing the crown and sash. After a few moments the crown was placed on Wurtzbach's head as the show quickly ended.
Say this for Steve Harvey: He's a man. A man's man. He had the mother of all brain farts at the worst possible time, and he went back onto that stage, owned that mistake, and corrected it. He'll never get any such hosting gig again, maybe never host a TV talk show or game show again after this. He will be remembered for all time as the guy who screwed up The Big Announcement at the Miss Universe pageant. But he had the scroat - and the integrity - to not take the easy way out, but to go back out on that stage, take the heat for it, and do the right thing.
Harvey's Universal Mistake wasn't the worst part of the incident, though. This was:
Well, I'll tell ya what, Donnie, America and the GOP would be a lot better served with you hosting Miss Universe Pageants than screwing up Republican 2016 presidential election chances, that's for damn sure.
Exit question: I don't suppose there was an Ant-Man DVD or Blue Ray ad during the immediately preceding commercial break, was there?