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Weekly Whatup, 1/20
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            I don’t dig too much into politics. Seems like mouthing off about something you know little about never produces positive results.

            I know sports — inside and out — so that’s what my life encompasses. But I do know any avoidance of mentioning the events of today would be like walking into the elephant’s room with a bag of peanuts and a coat made of grass while trying not to be bothered.

            This year’s election was the most I’d ever followed American politics, and will probably be the most I ever follow them again. There was many a day where I turned on the TV and flipped to the 24-hour news cycles instead of SportsCenter. I was as surprised as you, may be.

            I learned a great deal about the citizens that I share a nation with — an education that molded how I will view my people for a long time to come. That’s a column for another day.

            These days my job entails a lot of work with young people. Young people who year after year look forward to football practice every day, basketball games on the weekend or the region track meet at season’s end. After that, little is left to hope for outside of the small town they grow up in and represent on a field of play where, for a few short hours, all the problems of the day can be put aside for the thrill of competition.

            What I think we as a society, especially in the South, need to realize today, January 20, 2009, is the simplistic nature of the future president’s mantra: “Change.” If we put aside arguments over economic, diplomatic and domestic issues and think about change in a broader sense, maybe the picture becomes a little clearer.

            Those young men and women I mentioned earlier, for them perhaps a much simpler change than we allowed ourselves to be bothered with will alight in their lives on this day. Watching the television this afternoon, seeing the front page of the newspaper tomorrow and flipping through the textbook 10 years from now — that’s the rippling change that begins today and will last longer than we can begin to fathom. Our future is short. Theirs are long and bright.

            Today will be the second day in my young life that people will ask, “Where were you when…?” — the first being September 11 — and I’m going to soak up as much of it as possible.  When tomorrow comes, we will return to normalcy and wait, hope and dream as Barack Obama did.


Super Bowl!

            Welly, welly, welly, if we didn’t go a perfect 2-0 last week in the Conference Championship games. Webster’s called this week to ask if they could have my picture for, ‘amazing’.

            There’s just something about this Arizona Cardinals team that doesn’t make sense, which makes it sensible to pick them. And pick them I did.

            As for Pittsburgh, there’s no real surprise in the Steelers making it to Tampa. Proven quarterback, hellacious defense, fiery coach equals Super Bowl.

            I won’t pick this one this week. The wonderful pre-Super Bowl bye week gives us 13 days to be absolutely sick of the game by the time it gets here, so we’ll give yah the much-anticipated answer next week. I know it’s cruel, but you like it like that.


What All-Star game?

            Yeah, an All-Star game is this week, and it’s not a college football game no one will watch. It’s a hockey game no one will watch! I’m sorry hockey, I love yah, but that was just too easy.

            The NHL presents their best this weekend in Mon-ray-all. Since Ilya Kovalchuk is the lone Thrasher reppin’ the ATL, I’m obligated to root for the East team. But something tells me the West has a little more to offer in its star power.

            I’ll take the West, 9-8.

            After a 2-0 week, 113-90 for the season.