Being a Vikings fan has left me feeling like half a human being this year. A team with a lot of promise underachieving their way to mediocrity and losing to the Lions. The only thing I can really hang my hat on is that Leslie Frazier is the new coach and that fossil of a quarterback Favre won’t be back (Thank God). With the Vikes season over, it’s put me in a bit of a predicament. I’d like to watch the NFC championship and pull for a team, making the game more enjoyable. Normally this is not a problem, but this year I am forced to choose between two division rivals. So, how to decide? For me it didn’t take long to make a decision. Packers. Though this may be surprising to some, here is my reasoning in a two part answer. 1) My roommate is a Bears fanatic, which of course is about the most annoying thing when they are having an alright season sprinkled with tons of luck making for a year of over-achievement. Don’t even get me started on the highway robbery pulled on Calvin Johnson 1st game of the season at Soldier. He keeps saying how “Jay Cutler is a Pro Bowl quarterback” and I keep telling him how it’s impossible to make it to Hawaii on your back. Oh well, small potatoes. 2) President Obama says he will be at the Superbowl if the Bears make it. WTF, really? Hey President, you just got done having a conference with the leader of China any comments? Yeah if the Bears make the Superbowl, you bet your sweet ass I’ll be there. Come on man, you’re better than that, aren’t you? I get that Obama calls Chicago home and is a big fan of the sports teams there, but you’re the leader of the free world. I’m pretty sure you should be doing more productive things February 6th. Hey I would love to go to the Superbowl just as much as the next guy and if I had the coin to drop I would certainly be there. Saying that, I don’t have to run a country that’s a major world power and trillions of dollars in debt. This weekend you may just hear me utter the words “Go Pack Go” and actually mean it. So until next season I will be an honorary cheese head and like Bart Scott looking forward to Pittsburgh, I’m looking forward to next September… “CAN’T WAIT”.
As I woke up this past Sunday morning I noticed a different energy around our house. There wasn’t the usual excitement that we all had been getting used to on a lazy Sunday. It could have been that much of our night time activity the previous three days required quite a bit of recovery time or it could be that for once in 17 weeks fantasy football would not be played. Yes, as the commissioner of our league, I had set up our season to end on the 16th week of the regular season. Clearly a mistake on my part. A Sunday without Fantasy is barely a Sunday at all. Not to mention every game was crap this past weekend with the exception to the Bears/Packers game and the only enjoyment I got out of that was watching it with a Bears fan. Fantasy football just makes NFL football so much more enjoyable. Suddenly Houston at Oakland in week four has some pizazz with Andre Johnson and Michael Bush on the Fantasy roster. You start watching every game as if your favorite team were constantly in the hunt for the Super Bowl. This made the season much more enjoyable for a Vikings fan like myself, who starting hating the team as soon as Favre brought his ridiculous drama to town and greatly underperformed in the second year of the #4 experiment (Don’t even get me started on how that was a 2 year waste of AD’s career). Anyway Fantasy makes you wish for the little obscure things in a football game, like a false start on a 36-yard field goal attempt to get an extra point for you’re kicker or how you begin to hate every pass interference flag that hits the field. So with that thought of Fantasy enhancing every Sunday, why not have an 18 game season? Not only would it give those poor, starving, professional athletes some extra cash and me an extra couple of weeks getting up early on Sunday, you know besides going to Church of course.
I recently found myself in a bit of an emotional rut and couldn’t think of anything to break myself out of it. Hilarious movies weren’t cutting it, sports didn’t have the excitement, and no amount of Cherry Garcia could get me feeling better. This is when a wonderful opportunity presented itself to me. Two of my good friends that I have know for the majority of my life were looking for a new place to live and I was looking to get out of this rut. So why not just move in with these two fellas? Besides that I had just entered a 12 month lease 4 months and currently lived and worked 40 minutes away from a potential living area, there was absolutely nothing stopping me. So I did it. I dropped the necessary money to get out of my current lease (that does make me impoverished for the next couple of weeks) and shipped out to a new place. Just what I needed my friends. I got moved in last week and have found myself in a more delightful mood, despite having come down with some sickness. Now movies seem funnier, the sun seems brighter, and I have even started posting again. So if anyone out there is a little blue or needs a pick me, maybe don’t go overboard and move, but do a little something to Feng Shui your life.
Well the whole week per post has gone by the wayside rather quickly, but 8 days is close enough…right? Anyway the reason for my tardiness on my posts has been that we are in the middle of our busy season at work, which means a bunch of traveling. I’m not talking about the sweet cross country flight travel to Florida, Cali, or any other cool place. I’m talking about traveling out to the sticks of Iowa, which means towns of 1000 or less for the next 2 months. Needless to say it’s a little taxing, regardless that the work isn’t too terribly tough. It’s just tough to stay focused for a week straight when you know that you are pretty much at work from the time you wake up til you go to sleep at night. I myself am not such a huge fan of working in the hotel room after a day in the office, but sometimes you can’t avoid it. Oh well. On the nights I can avoid it I usually try to kick back and relax with a little t.v. or try to keep some of the pounds off by going for a little run. At a hotel we stayed at this past week, there was actually a “fitness room” on the main level of the hotel. The quotes were definitely needed for the description because this room was a 20×12 room with two treadmills and one stationary bike. Of course this is nothing to complain about because so far it has been the only hotel with any sort of fitness equipment in it and wouldn’t you know it also the only hotel where all I had was my work shoes with me. So naturally I think wow I could probably run barefoot on this bad boy and have no problem, right? Wrong. Now for this next part you’ll have to imagine my foot (or a foot in general). My pointer toe is slightly longer than my big toe which I believe puts me in some 45% of all Americans (not really sure the stat, but hoping this doesn’t make me a freak), the only reason I tell you this is because this little fella took a beating on that late 70s treadmill. At first a good idea quickly turned into much friction against this poor guy and a mile in he was covered in quite the blister. This is when I decided to end the torture for my feets. First and last time I make that dumb mistake, next time I’ll be sure to take running shoes or stay firmly planted in my bed for the night.
So it has been 23+ years in the making, but last weekend I finally made it out to a horse race. Now it was not the Kentucky Derby or anything remotely close to that size, it was a regular Saturday night horse race. Except that there would also be camel and ostrich races…AWESOME. Now I consider myself a bit of a betting man, but like to stick with things that I somewhat know. Horse racing is NOT one of those things. So with the help of a friend and racing program I did the only reasonable thing. I took the 6 horse (12-1 odds) in the 4th race to place. Why? Besides being just a random hunch, the horse’s name…Monkey Dust. Yeah, if you’re not putting money on a horse named Monkey Dust you might need some lifestyle modifications. Clearly the horse took second and would have doubled my live savings if I had them on hand. Unfortunately for me I only had 10 bucks (upsetting). Oh well, coming out ahead and enjoying an evening at the races is absolutely nothing to sulk about. Sadly, however, my bet on the camel race did not go as well as my adventure with Monkey Dust. The track was actually not taking bets on the camel race, but that’s no reason not to bet. Amongst me and my friends we put some money down and watched the excitement (Sahara Jessica Parker was my pick if you were wondering). These things were about as clumsy as a beagle after an ol’ barley pop in his doggy dish. They only had about 40 yards to run and out of the gate the camel on the inside took a beeline to the outside to cut off the other racers and ending up taking it down. The jockeys were probably about the most exciting part of the race with the terror in their eyes you could see from up in the air conditioned box seating. Immediately after the finish you could see the relief on their faces knowing that these one humped, spitting cows of the middle east would be gently walking the rest of the night. After that race we had our fill of excitement and didn’t end up staying for the ostriches. In my mind I imagine it went a lot like an old episode of Looney Tunes in which a smaller version of Elmer Fudd would be riding around on a fluffier version of Foghorn Leghorn. Just a thought. Although I missed out on the ostrich races I did gain a potential Saturday night activity and would recommend anyone to head out to watch a horse race if given the opportunity. Just remember pick the middle odds horse with the ridiculous name, unless Monkey Dust is the favorite.
“I’m sorry” is phrase is that is probably not said enough, but is still one that we hear all to often. It can be used in many situations. Like after knocking out a little brother’s front tooth or pulling the hair off of a little bunny’s head after promising mom and dad you wouldn’t touch it (sorry Jen I’m tired and couldn’t think of better examples). I would like to use this phrase now to all of you that have been deprived of my thoughts and observations. I realize it has been a while since my last post and I am truly sorry. With this apology, I have also planned for a list of excuses/explanations for my extended layoff from blogging. I left home, for work, Monday at 7 am and didn’t return til Friday at 5 pm, I had to wash my hair, and my internet has been down for the last two weeks. Which reminds me that I need to also apologize to Mediacom for constantly bad mouthing them for the last two weeks. Apparently I’m not as technologically savvy as I thought and was getting an error message about my proxy server because I clicked a box saying that I was using some sort of LAN connection (the kindly gentleman at Mediacom informed me that I was clearly not…Again apologies). With this apology I would also like to make a proclamation. Nothing like Dan Gilbert (clearly LeBron will win one before your Ilgauskus-less Cavs), but I would like to say that I will post at least once a week from now on. So please keep checking back in. Please.
Global Positioning System. Another wonderful device of the 20th century that simultaneously makes life more convenient and people dumber. The convenience is fairly obvious, it’s a small computer that tells you where you’re going, how fast you’re going, and how far away your next turn is. How is it making people dumber? (I’m aware that answering a question with a question is extremely annoying, but I’m doing it anyway) How many of you out there have ever seen/used a map in planning a trip? Boom! People used to know their cardinal directions (if you don’t know what these are, thank your GPS) and used them to get around. Think about people traveling in the early 1900’s. While traveling to San Francisco for the gold rush, you think people would have taken the same route, definitely not. Given the option they surely would’ve selected “Quickest Route” and “Avoid Toll Roads”. I know the Oregon trail people would definitely appreciate these wonderful pieces of technology. No ox would ever drown trying to pull your wagon across the Snake river, they would have known to stock up at Ft. Laramie instead of stopping at Ft. Bridger on their way to Fort Hall, and Suzy wouldn’t have contracted dysentery along the way. Plus they would have know where the best hunting grounds were, instead of stopping at some useless place where only squirrels dart out in front of them. Long story short, it would have been way easier to take that awesome rafting trip down the Columbia if they would have had a GPS. So the next time you think about plugging in the ol’ GPS to head out to that Target store you’ve driven by/gone to thousands of times, maybe you can do what our those before of us have done and wing it. I’m sure it will turn out just fine.