Wednesday, November 26, 2008
SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Notre Dame football players were pelted by snowballs from fans sitting in the student section during their loss to Syracuse on Saturday.
"To throw snowballs at their own team, I didn't think that was a smart thing to do. I guess [they thought] it was funny," defensive tackle Pat Kuntz said after Syracuse upset the Irish 24-23.
South Bend was hit with about 10 inches of snow Friday. While the field had been cleared before the game, there was still snow along the fringes and in some areas of the stands.
Fans at first threw snow in the air, but then quickly switched to tossing snowballs toward the Notre Dame sideline. Defensive lineman Ian Williams got hit in the helmet, defensive end Ethan Johnson was struck on the left cheek and a St. Joseph County police officer on the sideline looking into the crowd got hit in the chest. An NBC camera man also was a frequent target and several snowballs reached the field, although none landed near where play was occurring.
When the Irish defense held a meeting on the sideline, injured linebacker Brian Smith stood on a bench to try to shield his teammates. But when a snowball hit Kuntz, he stood and faced the crowd and appeared to challenge whoever threw it to come down on the field.
"I was pretty mad about that, but whatever the fans want to do," Kuntz, a senior who was playing his last game at Notre Dame Stadium, said flatly.
At least one fan was seen being led away by police.
Please, please keep Charlie Weiss as your head coach. I love how ND fans are still defending him. He is a talentless charlatan. He can't recruit, despite what rivals.com and ND fans may think. He can't coach and is proving that every weekend. More and more alum are becoming disgruntled and now fans are throwing snowballs at their own players. Absolutely classic. What a proud institution.
The worst two year span in school history. Weiss makes Faust look like Knute Rockne. Be patient alumni. Let Charlie stay one more year, maybe two. By then your significance in college football will be so obsolete that even NBC will be having second thoughts.
Face it Irish fans, its time to join the Big 10. Players don't want to go to South Bend so that they can play against Navy and Stanford. Its a dive with no women. Unless there are season long rivalries and you are playing for something besides your BCS autobid, this will continue to be a trend.
Notre Dame is now just a mark on the schedule. When teams look and say "well we have ND this week but the real test is next week when we play Central Michigan" you know your program has fallen.
The mystique is gone. It was over hyped the last 30 years anyway. If you can't deal with it, then you have a big dump in your pants.
I found a sight called "Asylum" and took some of their lists and posted them here. These are pretty good. Enjoy.
Ooops. Before I forget, there might not be a "Top Chef" post this week. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! Disappointing I know. It depends what time I get to Sheridan. I'll watch it on a rerun later and post then if I have to. My dedication to pointles drivel that no one cares about except me is boundless.
Church signs: http://www.asylum.com/2008/11/25/bizarre-church-signs-read-the-writing-on-the-wall/
Amazing feats of survivol: http://www.asylum.com/2008/10/09/amazing-feats-of-survival/
Here's a list of fringe presidential candidates. Even the blogosphere is becoming liberally biased. Barry Hussein isn't on here: http://www.asylum.com/2008/11/04/fringe-presidential-candidates-change-were-all-afraid-of/
Former beauty queens, now and then: http://www.asylum.com/2008/09/12/famous-former-beauty-queens-where-were-they-then/
We will keep trying.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Is there any doubt that if Bobbie Hauck had been a member of the Cobra Kai dojo, he would sweep the leg without hesitation?
Why do Europe and the U.S. have different shoe sizes? Don't give me the metric system either Maybe Europeans are so got up in the "big feet" lore that the have a larger system. They're too stupid to know that big feet just mean big shoes.
I do not believe that you will be able to walk into the Scoop and still not smell like smoke after Jan 9th, 2009. There is so much residual smoke in everything there that you will always smell it in your clothes.
Why doesn't anyone count back change anymore? It's not that hard.
I agree with whoever said, "if there aren't dogs in heaven, then I don't know if I want to go."
When I talk, does it sound like I have a Wisconsin accent?
I'm glad that Ford doesn't make airplanes.
I found some pictures on the internet of bigfoot talking a bath. If I sent it to the Hutterites do you think they'd get the message?
I came up with the invention of the two-strap golf bag at the Sleeping Buffalo in 1983. The next vision I have like that I will definitely take advantage of. I think I invented the the drink hole on the styrofoam cups as well, but that might have been Rex Kaufman.
The only good thing about the merger between Sirius and XM is that I should be able to get NASCAR on the radio again for next season. Other than that the Sirius music stations suck.
If you thought there was a racial divide in this country before November 4th, wait until after the inauguration. If "The Messiah" doesn't play his cards right, this country will be divided and financially crippled irreversibly.
The biggest problem facing this country isn't the financial crisis but the way people choose to be informed. Laziness breeds ignorance and ignorant people shouldn't be allowed to vote. Or reproduce.
I hate that I'm 45 and still get zits.
I don't like having to trim hair off of my ears.
If you want to find a good employee, ask prospects if they've ever had a paper route. If you can deliver papers at 5 AM during a blizzard, you are dependable.
According to my brother Bill, you know you are hungover when bacon doesn't taste good.
Defining friendship is one of the most important things you will do with your life. Have good definition of what a true friend is and you will have plenty. Regardless of who makes the cut, treat people the way you want to be treated. Until they are rude to you, then tell them they are pricks and go about your business.
My friend John Craig told me a few years ago that he had seen my ex-wife. He said she had put on some weight. I told him if she got hit by a bus, I'd get both my wishes.
I'll be on the way to Sheridan for Thanksgiving. Going to see The Prodigy's new baby and shoot some pheasants. If I don't post for a couple of days, that is why.
Root agains Nebraska on Friday and Notre Dame on Saturday. Hope Texas State upsets the griz. Most importantly, find the little things to be thankful for. A dry warm house, a full belly, cable, whatever. Remember that most of the world will never have these so make sure that you look at the big picture.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Well that picture pretty much sums up this past Saturday. Five turnovers? The Cats wouldn't beat Malta if they turned the ball over five times.
The Cats had their chances earlier. Going for it on 4th and 2 for a touchdown may have been a wrong call. I say may have as I was calling for it all the way. Not giving the ball to DC four times was definitely the wrong call. The kid ran it 80 yards, let him run it the rest of the way. Christsakes!!
The griz took advantage and played great. Are they the 4th best team in the country? Well, they were the second best in the conference so I guess the immediate answer to this is "no." I do think they will make it to the second round of the playoffs. They are chipped up in the secondary and at wideout so their chances to make a deep run will depend as much on luck as anything. However, there never seems to be a shortage of that in Missoula. The Reynolds kid ran hard but I guess he didn't really scare me. I don't think that as the level of difficulty increases, he will be as much of a factor as he was coming into the Cat/griz.
The griz put together a great drive to start the fourth, just as I had predicted. Not going for it start the fourth quarter was probably the biggest mistake Coach Ash made. I'm sorry, but you're down 18 on the road and getting some points there was imperative to any chance we had. Instead of punting he should have just walked out to the 50, shook Bobbies' hand and headed for the bus.
It would be nice to see Coach Ash grasp the full context of what this game means. I'm not going to be overly critical because I didn't think Mike gave this game as much meaning as it deserved as well. I will give it to Bobbie for beating us as badly as he did. If given the chance, I hope Rob repays the favor, and soon.
Good luck to Texas State this weekend. They are Bobcats as well. Maybe I can post a better picture next week.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Question: What's the hardest part about being a griz fan?
Answer: Telling your dad that your gay.
If you've been paying any attention to the BSC this year, and if you read this then you have been, the dark pink are playing pretty good football right now. Couple that with the fact that they still have an outside chance to tie for the conference title and that this game is in heart of communist Montana, then trust me when I say that they will come out very ready to play football.
Bobbie Hauck, head coach, um (do you know how long I had to look for this? about 20 seconds. Looks just like him except this guy has a smaller nose.)
The griz have a lot at stake this Saturday. A loss would certainly drop them in the national rankings and probably make them go on the road for a playoff game. I guarantee that they get a home game in the first round and they are certainly going to the playoffs, but a loss against the Cats might make them leave Missoula for round two.
That leads to me a different point. The Roberta lead griz have been beaten 3 times in the first round the last 5 years. They have become very good at being one and done. Yes, griz fans talk about how they play Thanksgiving weekend and we don't. But what they won't tell you is that the stands aren't full and they don't win. The letter that I posted yesterday was well researched but it makes almost every point I've been making about ol' hooknose for the last 5 years. Hell, Earl Somonson could win the conference there. Well, maybe.
Back to the game. It's cliche to say what I'm going to say but it's also the truth. There are four things the Cats need to do Saturday to even have a chance of winning. The first thing is that they cannot turn the ball over. We might be able to give them one but more than that will all but seal our fate. This isn't NAU or PSU. If we turn the ball over more than once, we lose. Plain and simple. The other three things won't even matter. The Cats have seven turnovers the last two games. Yes, they have a pick six in there, and they've been great at converting these into points the last two games but this is in Missoula. The griz feast on turnovers. 25,000 screaming hippies get them pretty riled up. So hang onto the ball.
Second we have to establish the run and do it early. I know everyone is excited because Marc Desin is starting in Missoula and the comparisons are being made to Lulay and he's a Montana boy but we have to run. The line has to get it together and do it on our first possession. If we can run on NAU we should be able to run on the griz. Run establishes play action, which will really make Desin effective. Demetrius is already fired up to play these guys. I also think that CJ has been kept in check long enough. Mix it up. I love the twin back formation that I called for four weeks ago. They must have read it on Chipshots.
Third we have to stop their running game. This kid from Drummond is playing like a man possessed and I'm sure he's as amped up as DC. We have to stop him and do it early. I know that Berquist is tough. Hell, I think he's the best QB in the BSC but if they get the run going then it's going to be tough for us just like it will be for them. I like our chances against slowing them down. I do think they will come out throwing. Our coverage has really improved the last couple of games but they have outstanding wideouts. We have to put pressure on Berquist. This means bringing the heat and bringing it often.
Last, we have to be ahead going into the fourth quarter. This isn't an option. If the griz aren't running early in the game you can damn sure bet they will be in the fourth especially if they have the lead. The boys aren't deep enough on defense with the injuries they have to go into the fourth.
Regardless the outcome, this has been a great year for the Cats. They effectively ruined their playoff chances when they lost to Eastern but they've run off four in a row and have shown a lot more emotion then they did in the two losses.
The point spread is currently the griz +15. Take the Cats and the points if you get the chance. Oh, and Coach Ash, if you get the chance to beat them badly, please by all means do it. Send Bobbie and the dark pink to the playoffs hanging their heads. And while your at it, show the rest of the state and the doubters that you are the man. Because you are.
I'd rather have a sister who works in a whore house than a brother who is a grizzly fan!!!!!!!!!!!!
I wouldn't root for the grizzlies if they were playing Iraq!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
I've left the name off this letter intentionally. Thanks to Brian A for the email.
BOBBY HAUCK - THE FINAL CASE AGAINST -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I've grown weary of the Hauck family members and those with no ability to look inside the numbers showing up here and trying to foist that hack on this program, thus it's time to outline what truly has occurred in Montana and why he would fail miserably in Seattle.
Let’s have a look at the evolution of the Montana program. They rarely won anything of real value in football up until 1991 when a man who had failed miserably at Oregon and Portland State ran headlong into one of the most incredible pieces of luck a coach has ever encountered. A dozer operator turned billionaire decided that he was tired of watching games while perched on rusted out benches and made it a point to turn Montana into a massive power in their division by fronting the cash for what would be one of (if certainly not the best) venues in the country at that level.
The stadium opened up in 1986 and Don Read went from 6-4 to 6-5 to 8-4 to 11-3. Every kid in Montana and the surrounding area wanted to play there, and the word was getting out to those with skills who might have been passed over, tossed away, or never found. Read had his usual lull for a few years thereafter (not even MT could contain his odd ability to sink in sand) until the recruiting had become so easy that even he could maintain the W/L record at 10+ every year.
He won the National Championship in 1995. Don frickin’ Read. Was it his great coaching? Of course not. The guy’s track record before he got that stadium made Willingham’s read like a dream. He retired as a comical hero, never seeming to fully understanding or perhaps acknowledge that he could write all the passing books in the world, but that would never change the fact that he was a pure hack before they laid the stone on the new field.
A Neanderthal from the central regions took over the reigns and proceeded to pull out a picture of that stadium each time he needed to recruit a new linebacker. He went to the playoffs each year and tanked the Championship game in 1996 – on the fumes of the Read team, of course. See where this is heading? Mick Dennehy felt haughty, he felt invincible, he felt he could win anywhere. Utah State fired him after a few years, and last I heard he was an admin. for some Podunk town near the big river.
Enter Cowboy Joe Glenn. A guy with a proven record of winning at two different levels. A guy who could charm and recruit with the best of them. Not that this was essential as even he realized that the $ Montana could put forth each year to subsidize the playoffs almost guaranteed and appearance. Play the usual patsies, beat up on the joke of a conference you were in, and raise hell when the real season arrived.
Hired guns now started looking to Montana as the Best of the Best of Last Chances. Ex-BYU ringer and QB Drew Miller made the competition look like the joke you would expect and, even after losing him, Glen still made it to the Quarters before pulling a Dennehy and heading to another hell hole that would give him little chance to succeed.
Montana yet again needed a new coach. Who better than an unproven assistant best known for being Rick Neuheisel’s bagman. The guy who was one of the first on the phones to Colorado and amassing violations the second he stepped foot in Washington air space. What the hell? He was from Montana, and the process of selecting a coach who had actually shown he could win the truly important games was simply unnecessary. Hell, Ty Willingham could bring the best to the school now. What could possibly go wrong and why does Hauck suck when it comes right down to it?
Let’s start with the number of the conference Montana plays in. A quick check at CFB DW and some rapid # crunching shows that the teams in the Big Sky conference are a combined 186-245 during the first 5 years of Hauck’s stint. The teams are 43-45 this year thus all holds up nicely for our purposes.
186-245…….. This doesn’t even include the laughable non-conference games they play against the likes of Fort Lewis and Southern Utah. With competition like this is it any wonder that a school that even remotely cares about giving money to its football program could end up with a reasonable record, win the conference, and get to the playoffs almost every year? Certainly not.
What has he done with this gold-plated currency in his 5 years? 3 1st-round playoff failures, one semifinal, and one appearance in the championship game in 2004 on the backs of Joe Glenn’s recruits. This is a horrid performance when you consider the fact that Montana holds all of the advantages. When you lose to Wofford? at home after having yet another “fabulous” regular season of 11-1 you have some serious issues.
Do you like thugs? Do you think we should even consider hiring someone who has the slightest tinge of difficulty with felons after what transpired the past few years? If you do, then Bobby is certainly your guy.
Let’s start with J.D. Drew. JD was a beast of a lineman best known for cribbing checks he hadn’t earned. Bobby was all over his ass to get him to Missoula, despite other stories of idiocy and a known incident involving booze. Guess what? Drew managed to get himself 2 more DUI’s during his tenure at MT, he weaseled his way out of both, and Bobby still thinks he should be on the team. This we can do without.
How about curb stompings? Just last month 3 idiots who think they run that school got caught on camera sucker punching and gang smashing a kid. These guys had barely been on campus for a month. Hauck tried to write it off as not a big deal. Well, Bob, the problem is that you have been running a dirty program now for some time and have clearly hit the “lack of institutional control” point of your career long before this.
A guy named Jimmy Wilson decided it was OK to blow away someone rather than let the system do its thing. Nice thought, but not the way to approach things.
His good buddy Quentin Freeman was another piece of work who has a record stretching from Arizona to the NW. Hauck had to admit he knew his record but clearly the thought of getting another Pac-10 dropdown overrode anything else.
How about the 3 players who were popped for kidnapping, burglary, assault with a deadly weapon, and robbery? Bobby claimed that he was “sickened” but he has used this word in the past regarding his thugs and undoubtedly will again very soon as he just keeps bringing them in.
Numerous other stories, publicly known and well-known to those with ties to the program, make you wonder how the idiot still has a gig. Do you want the Times back up the ass of the program in very short order? Call for Hauck as the next coach.
Do we really need to even get into his issues with recruiting violations? He was Rick’s point man in Colorado, people. Nothing changed when he came here and he certainly has not learned his lesson since then.
It’s really quite simple, people. The UM administration always looks to hire from the state if at all possible. Bobby Hauck was brought on because he happened to be from Montana and had experience shoveling for a coach with some success. He inherited a program that had been to the playoffs 10 years in a row and had just come off a Championship 2 years earlier. He walked into what is almost without question the nicest stadium in 1-AA – ask those who are calling for a new Husky Stadium how important that is in recruiting the best. His predecessor did far more in 3 years than he has accomplished in 5+, yet for some reason people feel that he should take over the reins of a truly storied program because he has won against a putrid Big Sky with insane resources at his disposal. Flash: every coach there does that now and will continue to do so after he is no longer there.
Hauck is not and never will be the guy to lead this team. Willingham would have about the same record at Montana, and I guarantee Hauck would do about as well here as Ty.
The elimination challenge was to make your own hot dog. You grind some meat, put it in cow intestine, throw some mustard and relish on it and wa la. How hard can that be? Some Indian chick (from India, not Fort Belknap) won the quick fire. She was immune from the challenge which was to prepare a meal at Tom the judge's restaurant.
Jill was your loser tonight. I'm not going to lie. If they keep booting all the hot cooks off this season's show and keep the lesbian and uggos on, the only thing that will be worth watching will be Padma. Or as I like to call her, the next Mrs. Gibbs.
Jill's mistake was trying to make a quiche with an ostrich egg. If I've said it once, I've said it a million times and that is don't make quiche and use an egg from a bird that's taller than you.
They are down to fourteen. Its late. I'm tired so I'm going to pack up my knives for the night.
Tomorrow though. I'll try to bring my "A" game. Its Cat/griz baby.
At the LBOH this year, Delmer reminded me of an all time classic story. It’s probably one of the best one’s in my arsenal and I can’t believe I haven’t told it more often. I also decided not to try to hurry this story after drinking Crown at my neighbor’s house. I’m going to take my time this week and try to increase the entertainment value ever so slightly.
This story is about a typical night at the Center of the Universe, Malta. Now, some of my dear readers aren’t quite familiar with my entire background, but most of these stories involve the same guys. “The Guys” are my life long best friends. We’ve been hanging out and getting into trouble since we were 4 or 5 years old. We still call each other and stay in very close contact. The LBOH, Lonely Bachelors and Oppressed Husbands weekend, was founded on the sole premise to get us all together at least once a year. We’ve been in each other’s weddings and helped bury each other’s parents. In between and on both ends of all that, we’ve had a whole helluva lot of fun. The best part is that we’re all only 44 so that’s barely half way to death. If any of these guys have a draw back, its that some of them went to EMC or as it was known back in the day, Eastern Montana College and Country Club. No grizzlies though.
Anyway, I’ll try to take you back in time to one of our adventures. Let me just say this, it seemed like a good idea at the time.
This story is rated R for strong language and sexual content. More for the language and the sexual thing isn’t of the graphic nature so you can almost let your kids read it. Except for the drinking and driving part.
TALES FROM THE HI-LINE:
I graduated from MHS in 1981 and stayed in Malta a couple of years before winding up in Bozeman. In the spring of 1982, I bought my first car. It was a 1971 or 1972 Datsun B210. A little tiny thing that had been owned previously by Evey (eh-VEE) Perry, who happened to teach bookkeeping and typing and all those type of classes at MHS. Delmer and I were in her business machines class together when we were seniors, Ralph dropped it because Evey taught you to run an adding machine with the opposite hand you wrote with. Ralph is very dominantly left-handed and his right hand basically has no use other than holding a softball glove and a watch, so he went to study hall. BTW, Delmer is left-handed as is Adrian and James Stanley the Third. That’s a lot of lefties.
I paid Bill Pray $800.00 for the car. Now what’s the first thing you do when you buy an $800.00 car? You put a $500.00 stereo system in it. A Pioneer cassette player with music seek that switches sides without taking the tape out? It must be magic. I’d better buy one before the price goes up. Throw in a pair of TX6 speakers and now we were ready to cruise.
The stereo system was a bitch to install. My knowledge of electricity is quite limited. The switch goes up, the lights come on, it goes down, they go off. Don’t take a bath with your toaster. That about sums it up. I had successfully removed the old radio, but was having trouble installing the new one.
I don’t know why Bruce Knudsen was in town that night but I do remember him basically pushing every one aside and installing the super cassette player in about twenty minutes.
I’m not quite sure but I think the first tape was George Thourougood “Move it on over”. It was freaking awesome. Let’s get a twelve pack and go cruise the drag. NO! There is no time to put the cover back on the steering wheel column! Lets hit main baby. A little George, then some Billy Squire. A cold Rainier between my legs. Summer was going to be great.
I put the steering column back on a couple of days later. I kept shocking my self every time I started the car. Fucking Knudsen.
The B200 wasn’t a hatchback but had a little trunk. It’s a small car, kind of squatty looking. It was this hideous lime green color. But it was mine.
I don’t remember who it was but I think it was Ralph who started calling my car Toad. It wasn’t just that the car had a name, it was it’s own entity.
“Hey Gibbs, why don’t you and Toad get some beer and come over”
“We saw you and Toad at Goliks last night”
“Who were you and Toad cruising with the other night?”
Whenever Toad and I went anywhere I always picked up the tab. On the other hand, Toad was doing all the work so it was a good trade.
With the pioneer stereo and speakers that you could set on the roof, we were invited to almost every kegger at the rifle range that summer. When you put Aldo Nova “Fantasy” in that cassette player, the choppers on the intro sounded like you were in The Nam. It was just plain old loud.
Toad topped out at about 65 mph. Not a lot of speed but I wasn’t walking anywhere.
One warm summers evening, we were east of Malta on The Deuce. I can’t remember if we had been to Saco or were at a party at Nelson Reservoir but we were heading west back into town around 10 PM.
I was driving, Ralph “Ghoulies” Golik and Delmer “The Heenster” Henry were in the back seat and Danny “Skeets” Leader was riding shotgun. I honestly can’t remember if Danny was there or if it was Shoey. Chances are it was Danny. Afterall, it was a weekend night and we were having fun. That doesn’t mean we don’t like Shoe, it’s just that his idea of having fun and ours are a little different that’s all. The difference is that, well, we like to have fun.
Sidebar: Jimmy and I went to Billings for Ralph’s 38th birthday. That’s the weekend Ralph and I got our tattoos. Shoey came and played golf with us and then that night we were going to an arena football game at the Metra. Shoey went home and did laundry. That’s what I’m talking about.
Anyway, we were heading west when we came up behind a car that was going kind of slow. It was Red Peterson in his Charger. He had Mark LaFond and Dale Kaasa with him. Those guys always traveled pretty thick together.
I decided to pass him.
Red was only going about 55. In his Charger. My rear bumper was just about even with his front one when he hit the gas and wouldn’t let me by. They were all laughing. Assholes.
He slowed down to about 45, I tried to make a run he stepped on it again and wouldn’t let me around.
Delmer “Chipper, slow down and pull over like we’re stopping.”
“Just do it. And turn off your lights”
It was a very bright night out. The Hi-Line is why Montana is called “Big Sky Country” because the sky goes on forever.
I slowed down and started to pull over. I hit the lights.
“Don’t stop. Just keep following with your lights off”.
We went into stealth mode.
Like I said, it seemed like a good idea at the time.
As I slowly caught up to Red and the boys, Delm informed me of phase two of his plan.
“Pass him now”
I like where this is going.
I think it was Dan who then became the voice of reason. “Better go around him on the right side in case we meet a car.”
I don’t care who you are, that’s just good thinking.
For those of you who have never been on Highway 2 between Malta and Saco, it’s a really nice stretch of highway, very wide. I mean, I didn’t even think twice about going to the right.
Toad was sounding like a blender on puree, we had the stereo turned down low and we slowly went to the right. It was the battle of muscle cars. Dodge Charger with American skill and know-how versus the Japanese Machine.
My Suzuki 500 four wheeler has more acceleration than Toad and will go about as fast. On the other hand, Beth J would never have been able to ask me into the back seat of my four-wheeler. Aaaaaaaaaaah, Beth. You little smoke show. I had no idea of the lure of a lime green import. A six-pack of beer, Tuma Road, The Motels singing “Only the Lonely” softly on the Pioneer, knowing the names of enough constellations. Sigh. She wanted to make her boyfriend mad and I was willing to do anything to help her. I miss the ‘80’s.
So, we’re door to door and these guys don’t have a clue where we are. We look over at their car, they’re bullshitting away laughing and talking. Well sir, it was about to get even funnier.
I try to stay as far to the right as possible. Toad is buzzing like a saw. It’s bumper to bumper and they haven’t picked us up yet. I’m about 10 feet in front of Red, then 15.
Lights, camera, action. BRAAAAAAAAKE CHECK!!!!!!!!
I turned on my lights and moved to the left. Red’s Charger faded from view through the smoke of him standing on the brakes.
It didn’t last long.
When he passed us a few moments later, he must have been doing a 100. It didn’t matter anymore. One of the greatest maneuvers in party history had just occurred and we were the ones who did it. We were so busy laughing our asses of still that we could have cared less. I think we even stopped so that we could get out and high five. Good times.
I’m not a tough guy. The last person I hit in anger was my brother Bill at least 20 years ago. The time before that was Bill as well. Most of the time if I hit someone it was Bill.
Ralph was in a couple of scrapes. He beat up Chuck Spoonheim in 8th grade. Got a bloody nose from Kip Young when we were juniors. He hit Danny in the neck in P.E. which is Dan’s only fight to my knowledge.
Sidebar: We’re playing floor hockey in P.E. and Danny’s team is scoring at will against Ralph’s team. Danny is way taller than Ralph. Hell, I can eat soup off of Ralph’s head. So Danny is taunting Ralph and Ralph takes a big ol haymaker at Danny and hits him in the side of the neck. To this day if Ralph and Skeets are arguing about baseball or basketball or anything else Danny will say “what you gonna do about it? Hit me in the neck?” Everyone laughs. Except Ralph.
So none of us are tough guys. Except maybe Delmer. Delmer was a boxer. State champion, national Golden Glove semi-finalist a couple of times. I think he beat up some Canadian when we were in high school which is kind of like beating up your sister. Hell, Ralph backed down this guy from Canada by just pretending he knew karate. Canadians. God bless em. But Delmer knew how to throw a punch and no one really wanted to see if he was tough or not. A good reputation like that isn’t a bad thing.
We get back to Malta and are cruising the drag. Basking in glow of our foolishness. Not for one moment did we think it was a stupid thing to do. Somehow, we ended up being right behind Red and the boys driving down Main (which is really named Central Avenue but who gives a shit at this point) when Red hits the brakes and jumps out of his car. I hit the brakes and jump out. Danny bails out, then Ralph and then Delmer.
Red stops in his tracks.
“I didn’t know you were in there Henry. Gibbs, don’t do that again.”
He jumped back in his car and left. Another fight won without throwing a punch.
Well that’s it. Toad went on a couple of more adventures and I traded it the next year on a 1983 GMC S-15. They had a promotion where if you bought a new truck, the now-defunct Eastern Airlines would fly you anywhere in the western hemisphere. I took my two tickets and friend Ralph and headed to St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands. We were 20 years young, in prime drinking shape, on our first jet ride and in a foreign land (sort of). Now that’s a story I’ve told often and it never gets tired of being funny. Next time dear readers. Next time. Sorry in advance Ralph.
Here's the first one. Enjoy.
(If I miss any typos in the following story it’s because I’m batching it and I’m a little on the Crown. It makes me clairvoyant. Also, this story contains foul language. I know that I keep it real, but I do apologize).
Last week everyone received an email from Lambert about Harlem. Jim’s remarks were unfounded and capricious (I don’t even know what that means but it sounds good). It really got me thinking about Harlem. Now, I’m a storyteller, as most of you well know. I can tell a story or have a story about most anything, it’s a gift that I’m thankful and I’ve also bored most of you to tears with my stories and what follows is sure to be another.
I was blessed to grow up in Malta, the Capitol of the Hi-Line, the pinnacle of sports for northern Montana and most of class B sports. If you lived on the Hi-Line, Malta is always good at everything, especially football, girls and boys basketball, wrestling, track etc. etc.
But Jim’s response made me think. I’ve had a drink in almost every bar in every town on the Deuce (Highway 2) from Wolf Point to Cut Bank. But Harlem, hmm, I’ve never had a drink in a bar there. I mean, if you’re from the Malta, when you pass Harlem it just means you’re half way to Havre. Harlem is just a geographical reference point. I never partied there. But wait, I do have a story.
Side bar: My friend Tim Barnes once said to me “ do all of your stories begin with ‘this one time Ralph and I grabbed a twelve-pack ….’”. Then Phillip Henderson came to Bozeman and said “ Gibbs, do you remember the time we grabbed a twelve pack…” and Tim went “ yeah this is how the stories start”.
It was around 1983 or 1984. The guys were ready to head back to college. I was still in Malta working my ASS off. Malta was playing Harlem in football that night in Harlem. We decided to make a road trip. The players are as follows: Ralph, Delmer, Jimmy, Rick Robinson and myself. So we grabbed a twelve-pack, in this case a couple of twelve packs.
Now Rick is a fine man. This is in the days where a designated driver was still in the think tank, but Rick volunteered to drive the way because we would take his mom’s new Buick Riviera. Sweet! A sober drive, lots of beer, alpine mix and we headed west 45 miles.
With Toto rocking us on the cassette player, we left the Capitol with a Mustang victory and partying in play. I’ll make a note here that the drinking age was 19 at the time and we were all legal, willing and able.
Upon arriving in Harlem, we pulled into the football field. Now, this was back in the day where you could actually drive into the stadium. Hell, in Malta, the East End Zone had so much booze in it that you almost needed a liquor license just to get you car into it.
We parked in the field. We were making alpines in the car and decided that we should put the beer in the trunk. After all we were in Harlem and didn’t want the windows smashed so someone could take our beer.
About this time, a lady approached our car. I don’t know her name, she could have been Lambert’s mom for all we know. Let’s just call her Harlem Booster Jacket Lady, HBJL, for short.
“ You guys better not be partying in here!”
“ We won’t be, we’re putting our beer in the trunk for later” As we grab three thermoses of alpines.
“ Don’t let me catch you boys back here during the game.”
“ Oh no. You won’t. We’re here to watch football.”
It was a chilly evening in Harlem. Now, all of us were well known at the time to have a drink on occasion. When we hit the stands with those alpines, well, let’s just say that by the end of the first quarter, we were dry.
Now, I’m kind of a ‘boys will be boys” guy. When you’re 20 or so and you run out of hooch and you know where there is more then that’s where you go.
To the Riviera!
At this time in history, Delmer wasn’t quite at the height of his powers in getting chicks to follow the party, but he had honed his skills remarkably to have some high school girls to c’mon along and have some beers. They were so invited and happened to join us in the Riv.
It was a rainy evening in September. Not by any means hot. I guess this is where I should say that Rick had been recruited by the Phillips County News to take pictures of the game. They would pay him something like $2 a photo so he bolted to make some cash. Meanwhile the rest of us, and our escorts, made it back to the car.
Call me old-fashioned but I believe in pouring a couple of beers down a young girl’s throat before trying to take advantage of her. As did my com padres. With a little Kool and the Gang in the player and a case of Oly in the front seat, things were looking good.
The names of the girls have escaped me through time, but trust me when I say they were digging us. We had just talked the girls into shotgunning an Oly with us when a rap, no a hard knock, lingered at the driver’s side door. I couldn't tell who was knocking. The windows were fogged, because there were eight of us in the car (get you minds out of the gutter). It must be Rick.
It wasn’t. It was HBJL. I was in the driver’s seat (literally not figuratively, wink, wink). I hit the down window button and there she was in all her glory.
“I told you boys no partying!”
“It’s half-time” I responded. “C’mon, we aren’t bothering anyone.”
“Get this car out of here right now!”
“Well, we have a friend we have to go and get”
“He can find a ride home. GET OUT!”
The girls de-planed. We were looking to soil some doves but all we got were ruffled feather. We situated ourselves and were ready to leave per her instructions.
“By the way, I called the cops and they will be on the lookout for this car.”
Well, that’s just fucking great. Not only do we have to tell Robinson we got booted, we have to tell him that he is probably going to be pulled over on the way home. This is shaping up to be one hell of an evening.
The girls bail. Who can blame them? We put the beer in the trunk, beg for forgiveness but there is none forthcoming. By the way, we still have to get Rick. After all, it’s his mom’s car and he’s sober.
“Don’t try to come back in here. I’ll be watching the gate.”
This is where we pull the old Halloween trick on her. You know how at Halloween, you find a house with great candy and want to hit it again so you go around the corner and trade costumes and ring the bell and yell “Trick or Treat”. The lady at the door says “weren’t you all just here?” Nope. That must be some other trick or treaters. Snickers around! Unless you’re Charlie Brown and you just get a rock twice.
We drive down a couple of blocks from the field, Jimmy puts on Delmer’s sweatshirt and says he just pulled in from Malta and the HBJL says “Oh OK go right in.”
Jimmy finds Rick and tells him what happened .
I’ve known Rick Robinson for over thirty years. He’s a great man. Extremely successful. Never, I mean never, have I seen him mad. Except for this night. He was pissed off.
Jim brings him back to the car.
“You motherfuckers! I was getting paid by the PCN to take pictures and you guys get kicked out of the game. We told her we wouldn’t be back. Gibbs, you said you needed the keys to get your coat!”
This is where it’s gets funny (yeah I know you’ve been waiting for funny but like all of my stories it’s a long drawn out process. Deal with it.)
So, Rick is at the car, we’re all waiting for him because he’s the DD.
Did I mention it was raining? I think I did. Our shoes our covered with mud.
“Alright. Everyone take their shoes off and put’em in the trunk.
Now, here’s where it gets funny, at least to me.
We’ve all been the sober one at some point where everyone else is drunk. It’s a tough deal. Well when you’ve known each other as long as we have it’s even tougher.
“Hey Rick! Do you want us to take our socks off too?”
“Hey Rick, my pants have some mud on them.”
“Hey Rick, I don’t know how it happened, but I have some mud on my shorts. Do you want me to get naked?”
At this point, Rick has obviously lost his sense of humor.
We load up and head for the Deuce and Malta.
Once we’re on the highway, we tell Rick that the cops are on the lookout for his vehicle. If I thought he was mad before, he was even madder ( if that’s a word) then.
He pulls over and makes us put the beer in the trunk. Not only that, he wouldn’t let us have the open ones we were drinking in the car. We cannonball those and head east.
Did I mention how non-fun it is to be sober when everyone else is drunk? I think I did.
There’s no music. No Toto, no Kool, no Journey, not even KMMR (Kelb’s Malta Mustang Radio) nothing. He was punishing us. Or so he thought.
Being the only sober person when everyone else is drunk is a hard deal. As I’ve said, it’s even harder when you’ve know each other as long as we have.
The hum of car is almost deafening. Rick is way, I mean way pissed off. But we’re giggling like a bunch of seventh grade girls.
“Hey Rick. What’s the speed limit?”
“Rick. How fast are we going?”
Not quite out right laughter.
“Rick. C’mon, can we have a beer?”
“Listen to me assholes. You cost me a bunch of money, my mom is going to be pissed about her car being so dirty. I’m going to get pulled over and I haven’t done a god dam thing. You guys can just fuckoff and leave me alone, I’m driving.”
At this point we can’t contain ourselves any longer. We are just plain laughing our asses off.
“C’mon Rick, we still love you. Lighten up, nothing gonna happen. Pull over and let us get some beer.”
At some point, when you’re the DD you have to relent. I mean, it’s better to give the drunks a beer then to listen to them whine. Almost like trying to wean a baby. The first couple of nights you get tired of the crying so you give them a sippy cup full of milk just to shut them the hell up. Rick pulled over, we got beer and sang Rosanna all the way to Malta.
Once we arrived at the Capitol, we pulled into the car wash at Westside, hosed down the Riv, vacuumed her out, washed our shoes and parked it at Mother Robinson’s house. We jumped into Delmer’s car, the Rezwagon, threw beer around in it like we were at the Champagne room at the Crazy Horse ( never been there, just heard about it) and closed down the bars like every other Friday night.
Now, here’s the point of the whole story that you’ve all been waiting for. A tradition is something that’s done annually. Maybe not on the exact date, but every year. An anniversary, the LBOH, a homecoming game etc. etc. A routine is something you do as a habit, like shaving.
Malta had been a class A school through the mid 70’s. A conspiracy by the MHSA to deny us two class B football titles. In the fall of 1980, we were moved back to class B. Our conference was realigned to include Harlem, who we had never played regularly. The tradition began that we played Harlem, the routine is that we always beat them. 46-0 this year and that’s a close game. Hey Lambert, the next time you mock the greatest athletic school in Montana history, remember that. By the way, Malta won that night.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
I think the Eagles may have tied with BYE last year!
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Thursday, November 13, 2008
The Cats won't make the playoffs. Anyone who thinks so is smoking crack. The loss against EWU was a back breaker. However, they can finish on a high note by pounding Jerry Glanville this Saturday. Hey Jerry, Elvis is dead. Dead like disco. The Cats will run all over PSU this Saturday and I can hardly wait. The boys played their asses off in Flagstaff this weekend. They came from behind, got the lead, gave it back and still came out on top for only the fourth time in the Walk Up Piece of Shitdome. What a hole. No concessions to speak of and there were more fans at any Class C home game. This (NAU) is a good program but absolutely no support. Flagstaff is a cool town. Way up in the mountains. Lots of old brick buildings but no one comes out for the game. Kind of like Missoula before Denny got paid to build their stadium. That is when the griz bandwagon formed and they've always had room for one more person who never even sniffed going to college there to be a "fan".
I'm drinking milk right now.
The other school down the road has been playing great football. I mean really good. Cole Berquist is the best quarterback in the BSC right now. I don't care what anyone says. Weber was lucky. I mean, lucky like like that guy from Havre who won the lottery in '91 picking numbers on his cow ear tags lucky. They will absolutely roll ISU this weekend.
A sign outside of Missoula "Fill up and get three credits. Stay elligible".
However, our defense is stellar. They haven't played against a defense as balanced as ours. But here's the wildcard. Mark Desin. The dark pink homos will only have one game to watch with Desin quarterbacking. Will that be the difference? I don't know, but I do think that gives MSU a bigger advantage than they had last week. I'll be honest though when I say I don't like our chances. Time will tell.
How about those Irish! They managed to squeak one out against Boston College. My bad, ND was SHUTOUT by BC 17-0. They are still not bowl eligible. I'm sure the fighting hackysackers will win against either Syracuse, who sucks, or whatever military academy they play. Lets remember, the Irish played the sixty-seventh easiest schedule in I-A this year. Kudos to them. Its the hardest schedule they've play in at least 20 years. Coach Obese is in jeopardy of losing his job, no one of any worth wants to coach for this overrated shithole of a college football program. Their demise is almost complete. I couldn't be happier.
As I mentioned last week the Class B playoffs are over until next year.
Our Denton Trojans fell to Twin Bridges this past weekend ending their run for their fallen teammates. Hats off to all of the boys from Denton. What might have been if they had not suffered their tremendous tragedy. What a great effort by these young men. To go onto the field every week with this great burden, carrying the memories of their classmates with heavy heavy hearts and playing so well for so long. They are truly THE TRADITION. Godspeed to all of those fine players and their tremendous fans. You have nothing to hang your heads about boys. You did your fallen classmates proud. We all wish we had the heart all of you showed us these past few weeks.
I'll end this on a high note. After Barry won the election last week, I was listening to Opie and Anthony on XM radio. A point was made that President-elect I wontgetanythingdone won the women's vote. One of the guys in the studio said "women can vote now?" the response was "yes they can." The gentleman replied " who drove them"? If you don't think that's funny, you are retarded.
PS I'm gonna have a Crown.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
What is up with Hollywood? Have they run out of ideas? I could set a camera up at LBOH camp and make a better movie than the crap they are churning out. Barnes and I have better material on a road trip to Sheridan than the shit that they make. Do you need another comparison? Okay, glad you all asked. Here are some more: Me playing pool on Tuesday's, Eric and I golfing, my four year old nephew riding his mini-bike without training wheels, any girls basketball game, well you get the picture.
Here is a great video. It's called Sweep the Leg. Its frikken awesome. Its seven minutes long but well worth it. It has the original cast members and a great ending. Lets keep it that way Will Smith. Enjoy chefs. And by the way, don't drop a challenge in my dojo. Nuff said.
Before we get into Top Chef, can someone please provide proof of the existence of Bigfoot. I don't care if you have to shoot one or if a tree hugger puts one through the window of their Outback, just get me a body. I like the good dreams I have about Bigfoot. I find him in the woods caught in some hillbilly trap, I get him loose, he befriends me and we become BFF's. I buy him 4x Bobcat gear, take him to Missoula where he breaks Bobbie Hauck over his knee like a piece of dry kindling. Its a good dream.
I don't like the one where I find him in the woods and he's pissed off because some tree hugger killed his mate with an Outback. Nightmare.
Top Chef is good television. Two words about Top Chef. Padma Lakshmi. Yeah baby, that's what I'm talkin bout. Padma was married to Salma Rushdie. You've got to be kidding me. I guarantee that if she was with him and I walked into the room she would kick him in the nuts and say "thanks for the memories". The best part is that she knows nothing of Malta so I have someone brand new to tell my stories to.
I like Tom because he reminds me of myself. He criticizes from the heart and wants you to learn. He's a kinder gentler version of me. I also admire him because he sits next to Padma at the judges table and I've never seen him once try to look down her shirt. He's a better man than I.
Here's the link of the judges and this year's contestants.
Its tough to get a feel for who really is good when there are this many contestants. But I can tell you who I don't like. The three on my radar are Jeff, Danny and Jamie. Jeff is a pretty boy who is more worried about his hair than his cooking, Danny is lousy New Yorker and has that NY attitude and Jamie is from the isle of Lesbos with the tattoos and attitude to match.
The ones to keep your eye on are Stefan, Leah and Hosea. I just have a feeling.
The first elimination challenge was to peel apples with a knife. They all start whining about how hard that is and how they usually use a peeler. Give me a frikkin break. I could peel apples faster with my Old Timer pocket knife. Their chefs for krysakes. I'd have won this challenge in about 38 seconds.
Here's an exchange if I'm on Top Chef.
Tom: So, what have you prepared for us?
Me: I have a cube steak soaked in egg with a corn meal crust with french cut Greengiant green beans cooked with Velveeta. Enjoy
Tom: That is fucking awesome! Chicken fried steak! Chip, you're immune until the championship round.
Me: Thank you chef. Padma, lets blow this Popsicle stand.
Padma: You are so much the duke.
Me: I know.
So long story short, Stefan is your overall winner tonight. Patrick and Lauren head home which sucked cause Lauren is easy to look at.
I don't see any real overall douchbags yet except Danny and the dyke. Jeff really isn't a DB. I think I can take him in a fight. It will be another exciting season. Wednesday has meaning once again.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
Friday, November 7, 2008
This contribution comes from Delmer Henry, MHS 1981. Its a great story, not very long and truly reflects the strength of the human spirit. Although Delmy is not a follower,which is not a surprise as he acts more like Bill Weglenda everyday, I'll give him the plug anyway.
In 1986, Peter Davies was on holiday in Kenya after graduating from Northwestern University.
On a hike through the bush, he came across a young bull elephant standing with one leg raised in the air. The elephant seemed distressed, so Peter approached it very carefully.
He got down on one knee, inspected the elephant’s foot, and found a large piece of wood deeply embedded in it. As carefully and as gently as he could, Peter worked the wood out with his knife, after which the elephant gingerly put down its foot. The elephant turned to face the man, and with a rather curious look on its face, stared at him for several tense moments. Peter stood frozen, thinking of nothing else but being trampled. Eventually the elephant trumpeted loudly, turned, and walked away. Peter never forgot that elephant or the events of that day.
Twenty years later, Peter was walking through the Chicago Zoo with his teenaged son. As they approached the elephant enclosure, one of the creatures turned and walked over to near where Peter and his son Cameron were standing. The large bull elephant stared at Peter, lifted its front foot off the ground, then put it down. The elephant did that several times then trumpeted loudly, all the while staring at the man.
Remembering the encounter in 1986, Peter could not help wondering if this was the same elephant. Peter summoned up his courage, climbed over the railing, and made his way into the enclosure. He walked right up to the elephant and stared back in wonder. The elephant trumpeted again, wrapped its trunk around one of Peter legs and slammed him against the railing, killing him instantly.
Probably wasn't the same elephant.
This is for all of people who love reading those heart-warming bullshit stories.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
The defense was spectacular last week and I still think Kempt had an OK game. He had four drops, three of which would have went for first downs. I like that he is at least taking off if he can't find a receiver. What I don't like are two things. First, it looks to me as though he really locks onto his receivers. Second is just the opposite. When he isn't locking on, he takes way to much time to check down. I'm convinced that he looks great in practice but game day is not his cup of tea. Let's see what Iddins can do.
DC ran great last week but Palmer needs some carries and not just when they are in Remely formation. NAU will be wanting to exact some revenge after getting their asses kicked the last two weeks. I say we make it three and keep our playoff hopes on life support. If we win the next two, the dark pink just may get a little nervous come November 22. First things first though, beat NAU.
Speaking of cheating queers, um is playing pretty good football right now. Their defense is stepping up, their running game is half solid and Cole Berquist is playing as well as any QB in the conference. Please God, let someone beat them besides us. Amen.
From Kissing Suzy Kolber:
Okay, Everybody: The Snapcount is Two Snaps and a Twist
Heeeeyyyyyyyy fellas, gonna check out my big coming out party this evening? It’s be there or be there with a bear. Much better than those spontaneous…things…that happened when the Barry won the White House. I’m still not ready to talk about it. A lot of pumpkin spice Blue Moons went into drowning out that sorrow.
That’s not even funny. I wasn’t for the Obama man. I was all about my homegirl Palin. Shit, Homegirl was gonna do it up right and spend half the treasury on interior design for the Naval Observatory. I could go for some navel observation myself. Ooooooooh. In-spir-RAY-tion!
I hope I don’t get tackled too rough now. It’d really scuff this argyle sweater Homegirl bought for me at Neiman Marcus. I better not have to give it back now that she lost. I already spilled seminal fluid all over it.Who knows? Maybe if I do good we get one of those Super Bowl things people get all torqued up about.
So c’mon, Denver. It’s on like throbbing dong. You’ve already let a few offenses have their way with you, you little sluts. What’s one more reaming from Brady gonna hurt you?
I’m just so happy to be off the sideline. Everybody’s all Gloomy Guses over there, always complaining about when Romeo wastes timeouts and never in the mood for letting be Sasha Fierce. All’s I know is whatever that Super Bowl thing is, I’d be hard pressed to beat the bowl I already got. KSK***
KSK is a great website. A big thanks to them for having lots of crap about Brady. It sure makes life easier and its nice to know there are other great minds out there.
You have to feel sorry for the goldendomers. They come out beating Pitt 17-3 and are in total control of the ballgame. They let Pitt back in at 17-17 but go up 24-17 with 6 minutes to play only to let Pitt score and put it into quadruple overtime where ND would eventually lose. It breaks your heart really bwhahahahahahahaha bwhahahahahahaha I almost made it through that without laughing my ass off. Nice work you disgusting pile of blubber. Hey, why can't Charlie Weiss go skinny dipping in Japan? Because the haven't outlawed whaling yet. They will get beat again this week by God's real team Boston College.
The class B football playoffs are over. We will not speak of them again until 2009.My Denton Trojans play the very tough Twin Bridges somethingorothers. C'mon Denton. Make it happen. The tradition.
I was in some store the other day and they had Christmas decorations out. Good grief. What are you gonna do? I'll join em. In the spirit of the season, I've written a Christmas carol. This is to be sung to the tune of "Santa Claus is Coming to Town"
Oh, I'm starting to pout
I'm telling you why
He's gonna raise my taxes way to high
Obama Claus is coming to town
He's taking my guns
Thats not very nice
ACORN made sure that we could all vote twice
Obama Claus is coming to town
He'll tax us when we're sleeping
He'll spend when we're awake
He'll look at all the 1040A's to know just how much to take and take and take
Soooooo its making me sad
I'm telling the truth
Stupid people shouldn't be allowed in the voting booth
Obama Claus is comi i i i ing
Obama Claus is comi i i i ing
Obama Claus is comi i i i ing to town.
The second time he took his belt to me he hit me a little harder and a couple more times. Lesson learned. Again, I really don't remember why my mom had sent me to my room on this particular evening, but that was the direction I was heading when I took my shirt off. The problem wasn't that I had taken my shirt off. I'd been sent to bed so it was the next step in the process. No, the problem was I, ahem, forgot to unbutton it. I had know idea my dad had that kind of hearing. It was like he had some kind of super power.
I'm halfway to my room, rip my shirt open and my dad hears the buttons pop? Are you kidding me? He walked into my room, picked up my shirt, made sure his hearing hadn't failed him, took off his belt and gave me a couple of licks. I've kept pretty good care of my clothes ever since.
But this story isn't about my dad. No. This is about my mom, Alvina. The true disciplinarian of Casa de Gibbs. Alvina, or Al as we call her now, had given up on spankings a long time before. My sister Leslie was going to get spanked. She ran to her room before mom got there, put on about ten pairs of underwear and then laughed when Al was spanking her. My mom couldn't hit very hard, a quality she passed onto my brother Bill.
St. Mary's Catholic School is the scene for today's story. Like most of my stories, I had to tell the first part so that this part makes a little more sense.
I believe it was the fourth grade. A fine autumn day in the Capitol of the Hi-Line. St. Mary's was a great place to go to school in your formative years. The pent up sexual frustration of a bunch of nuns from North Dakota really is the way to make men out of boys. There were 11 kids in my fourth grade class, one of which was not Warren Abrahamson. He started with us but finished with my brother. Before I go any further let me say that Warren is helluva good guy. Has his own business and is involved in the community. Back when I was in fourth grade, he was a little shit and none of us liked him.
We disliked him so much that we let the air out of his tires one day at morning recess. Harmless prank. When I say we I mean Darrell Gene Kovach, Ralph and me. It was, like many of my adventures, the perfect crime.
At lunch time, Warren noticed that his bike tires were flat. He immediately went crying to Sister Dorothy. I can't even begin to describe Sister Dorothy. If I ever write a book I'll have to devote at least one chapter to her and unlike my mother, she hit pretty hard and usually with something in her hand. RIP Sister Dot, you were something else. I'm assuming she's dead. This story is over 30 years old. Hell, maybe she's still teaching somewhere, taking an entire week to teach one math assignment. Like I said, at least one chapter.
So old Warren is crying to Sister Dorothy about his tires being flat and Dot asks the class if we know anything about it. We sat silent. Unbeknownst to us, there was a witness, somehow we'd been sloppy in our surveillance. I blame Ralph. We thought we were in clear but the hammer was about to be thrown down. Marlene Newton was about to sing, and our hands were about to sting.
"Sister Dorothy" she said, "I know who did it."
The blood began to run out of our collective faces.
"It was Darrell, Ralph and Chip."
Marlene ratted us out as sure as I'm sitting here. She would later be my first date. Sixth grade summer, took her to The World's Greatest Athlete with Jan Michael Vincent. Held her hand in the dark theater and gave her a polished rock from my collection. In Arkansas we'd probably still be married.
The shit was about to hit the fan. Hands were extended, slapped and slapped with authority. Sister Dorothy didn't use a ruler. She had a piece of wood that came from the back of an old wooden folding chair and it hurt.
Next we were marched to Sister Barbara Ann's office. The Principal of St. Mary's. She was the most feared nun in four states. Athletic, in shape and big enough to hold her own. When you were sent to her office, you just as well ask for your last meal.
Sister BA didn't punish us. No. Much worse. She made us call our parents. First, Ralph dialed the phone. The old rotary seemed to return to dial position much faster than normal. 654-1854 (I think that's right). No one was home. Lucky bastard. Next was Darrell Gene. Sneaky that Darrell. He knew full well his mom was home but when Sister BA was momentarily distracted, he put his finger on the receiver.
"No one home at my house either Sister."
"Chip, call your mother."
I dialed 654-1047. Mom answered on about the second ring. Great. Fucking great. These other two asses are going to get off scott free and I'm going to feel Al's wrath. A perfect fall day ruined. DO YOU HEAR ME NEWTON?
"Mom, I let the air out of Warren Abrahamson's tires."
She was at the school before I had hung up the phone.
Angry she was. Madder than an old man trying to send back soup at a deli. As Alvina was the only parent to show up, I was the only one to get punished by a parent. First, I had to apologize to Warren. That sucked. Then Al made me push his bike to Mick's Conoco. The three blocks seemed like three miles. After I aired up the tires, she made me push it all the way back to St. Mary's. Then she made me push my own bike home. The Coastking Saturn was greased lighting. It was meant for riding like the wind, not pushing. It was the last time I would touch my bike for three weeks.
Grounded from your bike in Malta at ten years old is like throwing a crackhead in a jail cell and telling him he can't use for three weeks. It totally spits in the face of 8th Amendment. Grounding was Alvina's favorite action of discipline. Grounding you from your bike was like being put on the rack in mid-evil times and she was the dungeon keeper. I was grounded from my bike so much that after 5 years, the tires still looked brand new.
Alvina would mark on the calendar when you came off being grounded. It was a First State Bank calendar with pockets for putting your bills in. Three weeks is 21 days, in case any of you are wondering and it always started the next day. I mean, if I got in trouble on the first, I didn't come off being grounded on the 22nd. No. I started being grounded on the second and came off being grounded on the 23rd. Her idea of new math I guess.
Three weeks away from the Saturn. Brutal. Not only that, but she told my brother Bill that I couldn't ride on the back of his bike. I had to walk both ways. She would stand in the yard and watch until she couldn't see anymore to make sure that Bill didn't give me a ride.
Bill was, and still is, a total suck up to Alvina. He was born on Mother's Day and has played that to his advantage for over forty years. Bill and I were both grounded at the same time on more than one occasion. Bill almost always had his sentence commuted.
"How come Bill isn't grounded anymore?"
"Well, he's been taking out the garbage AND he said he was sorry."
"I'll take out the garbage."
"You have to say your sorry too."
"I'll take the three weeks."
I wasn't wrong back then either.
Well sir, we started taking a different way to school. One where we disappeared from view much earlier than the previous route. You see, Bill was afraid of mom, but he was more afraid of me. I rode to school every day. Ha ha Alvina. I showed you.
The three weeks ended, I was united once again with the Saturn. Winter was coming and soon the Saturn would have its winter slumber in our garage. The garage where Bill and I would have a secret club, where I would fall through the floor of said club (which is the ceiling of the garage), where I would also fall off the roof and Bill would laugh so uncontrollolably that I'm lucky to be here, but those are stories for another day.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Barry is not a leader of a country. He is a charmer and he fooled many people, myself not being one.
Predictions for his first 180 days in office:
1) He will pass a tax increase that will not even come close to his campaign promise. He will raise taxes on everyone making more than $80k a year. The democratic congress will change his tax plan and he will sign their bill proclaiming "it isn't what I wanted but what this country needs" that makes him not a liar, but a fucking liar.
2) He will pass a bill ( or at least try to) that makes abortion, not only like getting a penicillin shot, but he will also make parental consent non-existent. If he has his way, you will be able to kill a two week old child after the fact if you think that is not right to have it.
3) He will outlaw (or at least try) ALL semi-automatic weapons. Barry hates guns and gun owners. He will disguise this as "a law being against assault weapons". Please, how does a shotgun that can only fire three rounds qualify as an assault weapon.
4) Lastly, he will re-institute the "Fairness Doctrine" which is an abridgement to free speech. If he is really a "man of the people" as he claims, then this will be a travesty to all of us. It won't end with talk radio. It will go to print and the blogosphere. Even his own website would not let opinions be published that were contrary to his. John McCain allowed all comments.
He is a Marxist and those of you that have voted for him will reap what you've sown. I'm not one of you.
If, in four years of his presidency, I am proven wrong I will apologize for the world to see. I have four years to work on it and I won't start until day 1459.
Again, I weep for the future. Palin in 2012.
Barry has not, for one minute fooled me, and I am sad that he has fooled so many.
Here is the transcript of Mike Barnicle's eulogy for Tim Russert:
"I'm Mike Barnacle. I'm the head of Luke Russert's security detail. And I'm here today for Eaton, Tierney and Quilty (ph). And to all the Episcopalians in the audience, Al, don't get worried. It's not a heating and plumbing outfit.
They, Dennis Quilty, Bob and Doc Tierney, along with Judge Dick Eaton and so many more are only a few of the many friends who knew and loved Tim across all the years, apart from politics and outside the media. Knew him through christenings and ballgames, weddings and wakes. Laugh-out-loud funny e-mails, phone conversations, sometimes about nothing. And they are here today, sitting silently like you, carrying a cargo of grief.
We know Timmy at 12 and 13 from sister Lucille. The parochial school lad with fine power method penmanship. And a mischief in his eye. Laying out his clothes on Saturday night for children's mass on Sunday at 8 a.m.
We know him as the young man, shaped by the twin poets of Empire state politics, Daniel Patrick Moynihan and Governor Mario Cuomo. And we know him as someone who can give ill advice to Al Hunt saying, "Dress well," as well. Taking that-taking that advice from Tim.
I mean, I'm not one to speak but-from Betsy we know him in his glory at NBC and "MEET THE PRESS." With the MRI machine that is television today, provided millions of Americans with a soul-deep scan of a man they grew to love and admire for his authenticity and credibility.
And we know him now and always as the friend, the husband, the father, the son, the brother. The mentor to so many. A guy who was uniquely without envy. Tim enjoyed your success, took pride in your accomplishments. But we know that, don't we?
So let me tell you about Tim in the summers of his life. His favorite season, I think, even more perhaps than the political parade of fall. When I shut my eyes, I see him at dusk on the grand porch of theOtesaga Hotel in Cooperstown, home of the Baseball Hall of Fame. He has a Rolling Rock in one hand and a newspaper in the other, and Luke has at least $1,000 worth of hats, representing every major and minor league team in existence.
I see him and Maureen taking Luke to summer hockey camp in Boston. Maureen, baffled at the idea of ice skating in August. Tim, a Rolling Rock in one hand and a newspaper in the other, looking at Luke andseeing Wayne Gretzky.
I see him on a fishing boat in Nantucket, the great fly caster from Holy Family Parish, Tom, in South Buffalo. A man who would need hand grenades to get fish out of the ocean.
I see him in Connecticut with Maureen, the love of his life, running Luke's third birthday party the way he ran the Washington bureau. Efficiently, kindly, generously, listening to everyone, with a RollingRock in one hand and helium balloons in the other.
I see him at baseball all-star games in Denver and Philadelphia and Boston with his boy and my boys, and I see him wearing his constant summer uniform: the T-shirt or double X golf shirt. The ones with theketchup and mustard stains all over them. The pants, drooping from the BlackBerry and the cell phone coupled to his belt, a Diet Coke in one hand. He was doing "MEET THE PRESS" by now. And a couple of hotdogs in the other.
And always wearing the huge smile that invited complete strangers to approach him, as if they all grew up together in the same parish. And in a very real sense, they did. Tim and his nation of admirers who recognize authenticity and found him contagious and without guile. I see him crying after helping Luke move into a freshman dorm at Boston College.
I see him grabbing my son Timmy on a memorable night-I'm sorry, governor-in October, 2004 when the Red Sox came all the way back to beat the Yankees in their own house, Yankee Stadium, winning the American League pennant. Big Tim and little Tim, both excited beyond belief. Big Tim and little Tim, both acting their age: 12.
I see him in the summer of 1991 when the Barnacles and the Russerts decided to visit the Brokaws in Montana. Tim is from a cement sidewalk, as am I. Two guys who never mowed a lawn, never rode ahorse, and rarely saw a river without a paper mill or a steel plant built at its edge.
In Montana, Lewis and Clark had an easier time navigating than we did. Two families, two cars. Chevy Chase and John Candy on vacation. Tim had a great idea. Get the kids walky-talkies so they can communicate car to car. Luke was 6. He rode with Tim and Maureen. Our two boys, 6 and 7, drove with us.
Tim's other big idea occurred about five mile outside Jackson Hole, Wyoming, on the way to Livingston. We would race to see who could be first to get to the Brokaws.
Well, we sped along this flat ribbon of road for miles. Neither of us had ever seen anything like it. Just flat as a ribbon. No traffic, none at all. Cloudless blue sky. And we must have gone for 15, 20miles, at about 80 or 90 miles per hour, until we noticed the blue light in the rearview mirror.
We pulled over. Montana state trooper gets out, comes up to the cars, takes our licenses and registrations. By now, the kids had retrieved the walky-talkies from us, because Tim and I were using them more than they were, and they were talking real loud and real fast, and it was very quiet by the side of the road. And the quiet, the peace of the Montana landscape, was pierced by this shriek of one of the walky-talkies: "Dad's getting busted."
The trooper went to his car to get his ticket book, and he came back with a puzzled look on his face. He told us he had a problem. We were both speeding, but he only had one ticket left in his book. It'sa true story. It's Montana. One ticket.
Tim looked at him, he looked at me. He looked at the rental cars. He looked back at the trooper. And
said, only as Tim could say, "Well, I was following him. Is that helpful, sir?"
So I see our friend in summer. I see his face. I hear his laugh, I feel his joy, his absolute delight in the life God gave him. Timothy J. Russert, noble, honorable, intensely loyal. He loved and was loved by his wife, his son, his family, his friends, and a huge slice of this great country of ours.
He was a boy of summer. He met his wife on a summer day. His son was born in summer. And so it is that we blow him a kiss goodbye on a soft summer evening, this sweetheart of a man who always, always left us smiling."
---Summer is gone, the World Series has ended, and this November feels a little colder than it should.