Monday, September 15, 2008

Back in the win column

Our freshman team prevailed in their first game of the season yesterday afternoon. Despite six fumbles, we were still able to down Grand Forks Central 33-22. My quarterback tossed three touchdown passes. He would have had a fourth, but we had an off sides penalty.


While the Bungals are up to their usual Bungaling ways, I have to admit that I’m enjoying the college football season. Labor Day weekend is one of my favorites because not only is it the final weekend of summer, but it also is the opening of college football. And what’s not to love about college ball? No big salaries. Insane fans (I mean Michigan can pack over 100,000 fans in the Big House). Great rivalries. Surprise teams. Upset minded teams. It’s all incredible. And a great breath of fresh air compared to the pro game – overrated athletes (Ocho Stinko) who take themselves far too seriously.

I could never see another pro game, but the college game is essential.


One afternoon I was waiting at a light. I saw two guys approaching the intersection I was stuck at in torn up t-shirts, jean jackets, and blue jeans. There might have been camouflage involved too. I couldn’t help but think, white trash.

Just then a black guy in work boots and incredibly baggy jeans and a far too large T-shit whizzed by them and drove across the intersection, just as the light turned green. There might have been a do-rag involved as well. I couldn’t help but think, gangster.

Finally, as the white trash made their way across the intersection and I was able to pull ahead, I saw one of the guys take aim at the black guy on the bike with an imaginary rifle, and cock it and begin making shooting motions toward him. I couldn’t help but think, rednecks as well.

But am I any better?


While searching for a descriptive piece to use with my college comp class, I came across this from a journal entry I had when I took a trip across the country one spring break with dad.

Look at that guy knock off the chicken! I thought to myself as I sat down and waited for Dad to return from the buffet line. I was so fascinated watching this guy, who has to be topping the scales at over 300 pounds, two tables away on my right not just devour but . . . I don’t even know if I can find a strong enough verb to describe what this guy does to deep fried buffet-style chicken. I guess the only thing that comes to mind was once as I child I watched That’s Incredible and they lowered a full side of beef into a tank of piranhas. Within 30 seconds it was stripped bare of all flesh. That is what this guy was doing to his chickens.

He opens his mouth and shoves in a wing. The massive jaws clamp shut and his jowls start flopping up and down. God only knows what is taking place inside his giant maw. He continues to hold onto the wing with his right hand. I’m surprised he doesn’t bite a damn finger off, I think.

Then his face stops heaving and he removes the wing, or what is left of it, from his mouth. All that remains are just the bones and some grizzle and a long slender strand of spittle connecting the now devoured chicken to his tongue. Then he greedily slurps it back up like it is a spaghetti noodle.

I am half expecting him to snap the bones open with his incisors and devour the very marrow, but he doesn’t. He tosses the bones and grizzle onto a plate sitting across from him. The bones join the remnants of several other families of chickens.

“He’s got himself a freaking chicken necropolis over there Dad,” I say. But Dad isn’t paying much attention. He has a steaming plate of mashed potatoes and salsbury steak in front of him. Oh well, his loss.

I turn my attention back to the chicken eater. This is incredible. I felt like I was truly watching something magnificent. Like watching the Red Sox climb back from an 0-3 hole against the Yankees or seeing Wilt Chamberlain score 100 points against the Knicks. I was watching history.

As he continues to chomp his way through his heaving plate of wings, thighs, and breasts, I notice his attire. He is wearing thick blue jeans and his black T-shirt is stretched to the point that it is almost transparent. In fact, I am surprised that the shirt's molecules can retain the properties of a solid under such duress. In fact his belly is sectioned off into upper and lower tears by the table. I bet he could rest his drink on his left breast, I think.

A small line runs across his belly where his shirt has apparently been torn. When I ask my dad, who is oblivious to the chicken eater, says that sometimes truckers who don’t change their shirts very often get marks like that from the wheel constantly rubbing across their bellies.

His short legs barely reach the ground. His small velcro-strap sneakers dangle just off the floor. I notice one pudgy hand descend and smear saliva and chicken parts across his pants leg. His thighs are massive. I know I could easily wear one of his thighs for my own pants.

I look back up and amazed to see that he has now knocked off three more helpings, two breasts and one thigh. His face is now perspiring. He wipes his forehead with a napkin and tosses it on the bench next to him. I can only imagine that a pile is growing there that could equal the pile of chicken bones on the other plate across from him.

I look back and now he is licking his fingers before grabbing another victim. His fingers are short and chubby, like sausage links or some grotesque type of overweight caterpillar. He makes a loud slurping noise as he drains the juices from his fingertips.

“You better hurry up,” Dad says as he shovels in a load of mashed potatoes.

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