Welcome to the Thursday edition of The Cooler, where I don’t care if I write any words as long as we win. Let’s get to it:
*Taco Tuesday is a lot of things to a lot of different people: a state of mind, a lifestyle … or maybe just a bit of handy alliteration to remind us that the second day of the traditional work week would be a great time for some taco goodness.
But we also now have a definitive ruling on what Taco Tuesday is not: It is not a phrase that can be trademarked, something LeBron James nevertheless tried to do.
His trademark application was denied by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office , per ESPN, because it’s a “commonplace term” (even if taco enthusiasts like me know that tacos themselves are hardly ordinary).
Per the story: “The applied-for mark is a commonplace term, message, or expression widely used by a variety of sources that merely conveys an ordinary, familiar, well-recognized concept or sentiment message,” the USPTO wrote.
The USPTO also said, per the story, “Taco Tuesday” is a “widely used message used by various parties to express enthusiasm for tacos by promoting and celebrating them on a dedicated weekday.” This is the sort of government I can get behind.
At this point, you might need to back up a step and ask: Why in the world was an NBA megastar trying to trademark a taco-based phrase in the first place?
Well, LeBron is a lover of tacos and his social media videos of his family eating them on Tuesdays became a hit. He wanted to use “Taco Tuesday” on merchandise.
So this was a selfish, greedy money grab? Well … kind of. But maybe not? See, also per the ESPN.com story, the trademark rejection seems to be exactly what LeBron was after.
Per a spokesman for LeBron, who surely is proud that he got to make a statement about tacos: “Finding ‘Taco Tuesday’ as commonplace achieves precisely what the intended outcome was, which was getting the U.S. government to recognize that someone cannot be sued for its use.”
So LeBron just wanted to prove that tacos on Tuesday are for everyone (and use the phrase on merch)? Maybe he is the hero we deserve.
*Belgian tennis star Kim Clijsters, the former world No. 1 player 16 years ago, is coming out of retirement for the second time at age 36 — after being out of the game for seven years. Her announcement Thursday on Twitter was just about perfect.
*The Jets are Jets-ing hard already this year. Not only did they blow a 16-0 lead to the Bills in a 17-16 Week 1 loss, but also they will be without starting QB Sam Darnold in Week 2 because of … mono? Yes, that’s right. So their Monday Night Football starter against the Browns will be none other than last year’s Vikings backup, Trevor Siemian. Head coach Adam Gase seems thrilled to share the news! “So … that would be that.
*It’s hard to win a basketball game — let alone a playoff game — when your starting backcourt is outscored 48-1. That was the fate for the Lynx on Wednesday, with Danielle Robinson (0) and Odyssey Sims (1) combining for a single point in a season-ending 84-74 loss to Seattle.
Sims was an All-Star this year and led the Lynx in scoring at 14.5 ppg. Robinson was fourth at 10.1 ppg — so their output was nearly 24 points below their combined regular-season averages.