Not a litteral toss?
December 11, 2018 5:15 AM   Subscribe

There is a bunch of chatter about how the President messed up the coin toss at the recent army-navy game. I just finished watching several Superbowl coin tosses trying to figure out what he did wrong and they all seem to be the same as the President's. I'm obviously a sports bumpkin; can someone ELI5 what he did wrong?
posted by Mitheral to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Have you flipped a coin? To me, a coin flip involves flicking upward with the thumb (on which the coin is resting) to make an end-over-end flipping of the coin as it rises and falls, leading to randomness in what side will be up when it lands. The two non-Trump clips that you link show that sort of thumb flick. Trump looks like he literally tossed rather than thumb-flicked.
posted by sheldman at 5:21 AM on December 11, 2018 [5 favorites]


(wikihow - how to flip a coin)
posted by sheldman at 5:32 AM on December 11, 2018


From what I can tell, Trump's coin never turned over.
posted by slkinsey at 5:40 AM on December 11, 2018


What he did is what you'd do if you were trying to cheat.

Tossing a coin with very little spin makes it look like you're trying to toss it with no spin — which is hard to do, but which, if you succeeded at it, would let you control what side it landed on.

In a standard coin toss, you make an exaggerated show of not-cheating by flicking the coin with your thumb. This gives it a lot of spin, which makes it really, blatantly, everyone-can-see-it obvious that you're not trying to do the no-spin thing.
posted by nebulawindphone at 6:23 AM on December 11, 2018 [8 favorites]


As someone who has spent a fair amount of time flipping coins (volleyball referee for many years)--yeah, setting it on your thumb and flipping is the correct method. It takes practice to make it a smooth motion (and catch it without fumbling). Throwing it up in the air is lazy and allows for errors.
posted by sperose at 6:45 AM on December 11, 2018 [3 favorites]


AFAIK, sporting coin tosses are supposed to land on the ground in order to prevent the possibility of the appearance that the person catching the coin may have manipulated it.
posted by slkinsey at 7:26 AM on December 11, 2018 [1 favorite]


Looking at HW Bush's coin toss from the 2017 Super Bowl, it appears that he used a combination of toss with the hand and a flick of the thumb.

At the 2011 Army-Navy game, Obama used a classic thumb-flick coin flip.

Unless the NFL rules specify the exact method of the coin toss, I suspect Trump was confused by the phrase "coin toss" as opposed to "coin flip". That and he's just generally an idiot with poor manual dexterity (witness the way he sometimes has to use both hands to drink water).
posted by jedicus at 7:28 AM on December 11, 2018 [4 favorites]


The coin toss itself really was fine. The shrug and the point were super weird, but this is largely a "bitch eating crackers" situation, IMO.
posted by dbx at 8:41 AM on December 11, 2018 [4 favorites]




It should be mentioned: Having a famous person fuck up the "ceremonial whatever" and look like an idiot at a sporting event has a long and storied history. Trump has lots to complaining about, but he should get a pass on the coin flip. That Deadspin article has Vince Lombardi fucking it up in about the same way. Worth mentioning though, difference is he knew he fucked up.

If we are are going to judge an administration by the "ceremonial whatever", GWB is surely our greatest president.
posted by sideshow at 10:00 AM on December 11, 2018 [1 favorite]


It should be mentioned: Having a famous person fuck up the "ceremonial whatever" and look like an idiot at a sporting event has a long and storied history.

To the point that there was a B-plot about it on an episode of The West Wing.
posted by Etrigan at 11:02 AM on December 11, 2018


I think the main thing is that even when most people fuck up the coin toss, they're at least trying to get the coin to flip end-over-end; the fuck-up is in not getting enough rotational action, possibly due to nerves, possibly due to the unusual size and/or weight of the ceremonial coin. Trump doesn't even seem to try to get the coin to flip. He just tosses it straight up in the air with no attempt at making it rotate in any direction at all. Like so much of this fucking administration: it's not as if no one has ever fucked it up before, it's that no one has ever fucked it up in this precisely stupid way.
posted by mhum at 11:05 AM on December 11, 2018 [4 favorites]


« Older It's 1979-82, you're 19-25, you live in a small...   |   Tips for painting terracotta pots Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments