The Turkey is back from a very nice few days up in the Panhandle of Florida, about 250 miles northwest of here as the turkey flies (but since this Turkey’s Jeep doesn’t fly, particularly across the Gulf of Mexico, it’s closer to 300 miles). I had one helluva good time hiking, backpacking, and Geocaching up there at Torreya and St. George Island state parks, not spending much time at all thinking about college football. (Normally, at this time of year I’m sucking up all the football I can get in preparation for the long drought.)
I returned home to suburban Orlando Sunday night, whereupon I received the following multi-pronged reality check:
- My fears about the Big Ten being outperformed in bowl games were borne out, with the exception being the pleasant surprise Michigan victory over Florida. All the other Big Ten bowl games went down as I had predicted. Draw your own conclusions. I did.
- How bout that Steelers-Jags game? Ben Roethlisberger sure knows how to throw INTs at the wrong time, and Mike Tomlin sure knows how to go for two at the wrong time. Maybe they’ll do better working on their golf game now.
- The uncharacteristically cold weather here in the Orlando area killed my showy hibiscus in the front yard. I have Al Gore to thank for not bringing his promised global warming. (Perhaps that’s why the global warming advocates are now trying to waffle by dubbing the nebulously unproven concept “climate change.”)
- The cream does indeed rise to the top in college bowl games and the NFL playoffs. Pretenders such as Hawaii, South Florida, and Ohio State in the college ranks, and Pittsburgh and Tampa Bay in the pros got what they deserved.
- Someone forgot to flush a toilet before we left for a few days. I will not describe the result.
- Chuck Norris is apparently running for VP on the Huckabee ticket. He was anything but “Missing in Action” in those victory poses at the Iowa Caucuses.
- Barack Obama is presumably having great success running for President with a platform of “I’m cute and well spoken and I ain’t Bush.” College girls are showing up in great numbers to vote for young, cute, and inexperienced. However, reason prevailed in New Hampshire, where the Republicans’ great white hope named Hillary edged out young and cute. We wish Mrs. Bubba well in the remaining primaries. The Turkey’s assessment? Populism is a sham, a political ploy to generate votes, and no iconoclasts or altruists are out there running for the top elected office—only those with blind ambition. Yet we voters continue to vote for the panaceas these guys and babes offer. Is it any wonder that someone running on a vacuous platform of “change” does so well? (It worked pretty well for Bubba, but I digress…)
- I managed to read in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that Joe Paterno had said that son Jay should not get the PSU head coaching job when the senior Paterno retires. That’s either a stroke of reality or a master manipulation.
- The other blogs are done with their infernal year-end “Top 10” lists. Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition. You’ll see no such hackneyed, worn-out, unoriginal journalistic device here.
- I had to add a #10 to make this an infernal top ten list.
Mostly, I just wanted to let you know that I’m back and I’m ready to blow acrid smoke again. We Penn State fans could surely appreciate an uneventful and uplifting off-season, given all the crap that took place off the field last year. Alas, “uneventful” should not mean losing primo recruits to Notre Dame and USC, as has been reported elsewhere ad nauseam. Furthermore, the Nittany Nation continues to be constantly abuzz with lame-ass speculation about the coaching situation—who is leaving, who is staying, when will Joe go, etc. Like, give it a rest, already. Oh, and then there’s the quarterback controversy in the making, with the Clark/Devlin situation echoing Robinson/Morelli in Bizarro World fashion. It’s tempting to write about it, but no doubt it’ll be beaten to death elsewhere. Accordingly, I hope we will be able to find fresh, non-contrived, positive things to expound upon in the forthcoming months.
It’s going to be a long off-season. For now, I’ll sign off reiterating my wishes for a happy and healthy 2008 for all of you.