Jeff Smith 4 p.m., Feb. 26
Chargers hire Terry Richardson as new Charger Girl photographer
Team owner Spanos: "The 2012 Charger Girl swimsuit calendar just didn't do it for me. It was time for a change."
Among the hundreds of staff changes at the San Diego Chargers this off-season, perhaps none is more important to team owner Alex Spanos than his hiring of famed photographer Terry Richardson to create his beloved Charger Girl swimsuit calendar. "It would not be an exaggeration to say that the annual creation of this calendar is the reason I still own the San Diego Chargers," says Spanos. "It sure ain't for the ticket revenue or TV contracts. What did we have, four games blacked out last season? But even the blackest blackout can be brightened by the radiant smile of a bikini-clad Charger Girl."
Lately, however, those smiles have apparently lost some of their wattage. "I dunno. [Charger photographer] Mike [Nowak] is a good guy who knows his stuff, and [Charger Girl director] Lisa [Simmons] keeps scoring top talent, but something's off. I mean, just look at these shots from the 2012 edition. This lovely young lady looks more confused than anything else. I have enough confusion in my life, starting with figuring out how the hell we lost so many games this year. I don't want any in my swimsuit calendar."
"This girl, she just looks tired. Or bored. Again, I have enough bored women in my real life, writing me letters to complain about how their husbands just watch football all day on Sunday. I don't need another one on my wall."
"This one's almost right, but she just looks uncomfortable, like she doesn't know what do to with her arms, or maybe her back is tweaked. You ever had a tweaked back? It's awful."
"This one really bothers me. Who takes a beautiful girl and stands her next to a bunch of slimy moss? It's no wonder she's leaning the other way. On top of that, some clown has gone and scratched his initials into that rock. You stay classy, San Diego."
"More of the same. She looks really unhappy to be in that algae-ridden tidepool, so it's hard to imagine jumping in there with her."
"This one is another near miss. What is up with that gold chain on her top? Did I fall asleep and wake up in 1985?"
"By way of contrast, look at this picture from a calendar Terry Richardson shot. She looks totally happy to be kissing that little critter - a little critter we can all identify with. When I saw this, I knew Terry was the man for us in 2013."