Good Luck

In just 24 hours, it has gone from winter to spring. Pardon me, if I’m not jumping for joy. Maybe it’s too warm, too early–potential for storms?

It would be nearly impossible, not to know about a particular sporting event, happening this very evening. I don’t have a favorite team in the contest–although I reside 180 miles from New Orleans.

In the interest of good sportsmanship and fair play, may the best team win. It’s a shame Howard Cosell’s not still around to pontificate, with his polysyllabic palaver.  “Tonight these gridiron gladiators, from both the east and west coasts; these two leviathans, battle for football supremacy.”

Beating Round the Bush

It will not be easy to avoid talking about a popular sporting event, today, but, I will try.

Weather talk, or not? Seventy degrees today and sunny. That’s very nice for this time of year.

Didn’t see any acquaintances at breakfast–except for the wait staff.

For some reason, I lost Saturday. No, not literally. All day I wanted to skip right to Sunday.

Who got snubbed? Who got their feelings hurt? Doesn’t matter.  I don’t have much interest in SB 52.  Neither of the contenders are local.  Coach Rosetti, from high school, would call me a poor sport.

Stop Whatever You’re Doing…

What would Howard Cosell have to say–if he, and ABC’s Monday Night Football crew were still around?

“Well, Frank and Dandy Don, it’s a sign of the times that, this year, the NCAA BB playoffs are in direct competition with April, a pregnant giraffe, soon to deliver; nobody knows for certain, when, or if it will happen.”

“Down on the farm, Howard, animals didn’t need or want television coverage.  As far as I could tell, anyway,” Dandy Don replied.

“Frank, you’ve been unusually quiet on this subject. Do you have anything to add?”

“Howard, I’m staying out of this one.  I have nothing against mothers and motherhood.”

The clash of two media attention-grabbers is well underway.  The NCAA basketball playoffs, vs April the Animal Park giraffe.  The pregnant giraffe, seems to be winning so far.  April, could live up to her namesake–deliver in April.

As Howard implied, “Could there be a bit of jealousy between these two factions?

“I’m certain, that April, if she can hold up to the extra strain of publicity, is up to the task.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

From the Boneyard

H. H. Gregg and Applebees, latest discards, tossed on the growing rubble pile of failed/failing franchises. Regurgitated from murky waters of competition, public tastes, balance sheets drowned in red ink.

Shining new faces atop the trash heap, fade in relentless summer suns, until washed away into the recesses of memory.  Forgotten by most, except for a few nostalgia freaks, such as myself; waiting to spring out on some obscure trivia night.  From dusty shelves, some reporters reaching for ratings, will find fodder for another “whatever happened to?” story to fill a slow news day.

The cemetery of fallen franchises grows ever larger.  Still more are on the critical list–Sears and K-Mart come to mind.  May the fallen rest in peace.  I wish the rest safe passage on their way to franchise Valhalla.

Franchises failed for various reasons.  Why Outback Steak House couldn’t make it locally is still a mystery.  Speaking from my little corner of the world–what was with the proliferation of restaurants offering chicken fingers?  “To franchise gurus, venture capitalists, wherever you may happen to be–help, we’re drowning in chicken finger restaurants down here!”

–image, http://www.jsfburgerchef.homestead.com/–

 

They’re Only Game Shows

NBC has a new prime-time game show that requires players to agree on controversial topics.  “Divided,” which I assumed was short for “divide and conquer,” intended to capitalize on opinionated contestants–regarding current social, political, and cultural issues–without coming to blows.

I’ve only seen bits and pieces.  On one episode, a player deliberately refused to agree with the majority because there’d been an attempt to vote him out–their winnings disappeared.  I found the show to be a frustrating display of group dysfunctionality.

Game show popularity ebbs and flows.  Stalwarts, Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy, and The Price Is Right are still around.  ABC’s “Game Night” found success with updated versions of To Tell the Truth, Pyramid, and The Match Game.

NBC’s offered “The Wall,”  a sort of “Plinko” on steroids–a vertical peg board of dizzying heights, from which chips are dropped.  Like Deal Or No Deal, potential prize amounts are staggering.  Points are given and taken away with equal frequency.

My escape is watching the Wheel with Pat and Vanna every evening at 6:30.  They need to re-check my address.  I know I should have won the $5,000 giveaway by now.

Game shows allow a 30 minute break from reality.  I prefer them to current local news.  Splattered across local televisions screens–two fugitives remained at large.  They’ve murdered three, wounded one in their latest crime spree.

 

http://www.NBC.com/–

 

The Max Butt Slap (An Update)

Super Bowl 51 coverage will overshadow everything today.  Local favorite son, Julio Jones, is the only reason for me to favor Atlanta over the Patriots.  I wish both teams luck. 

From two years ago–a secret play called the “Max Butt Slap.” Will either of these teams employ it this year?  We’ll find out later today.

———————————————–

I’m Brad Fussberger, reporting on one of the most unusual sports stories of my career.  Just when the “Deflategate” brouhaha started to fade, this reporter, learned from a reliable source; that one of the Super Bowl teams is rumored to have a strange, secret weapon this year.  Is it Pete Carroll’s Seattle Seahawk’s, or veteran Super Bowl winner, Bill Belichick’s, New England Patriots?

Like myself, when I first heard about it; some of you might think; oh well–this is just another, strange, seldom-used, triple-reverse, gadget play.  Or some crazy throwback, flying wedge defense.  Well, it’s none of those things–it’s hard-hitting football.

The maneuver is called the “Max Butt Slap.”  And it’s not at all like the celebratory hand slap to the backside.  It involves a defensive player spinning his body around; bowed at the waist, and hitting someone butt first.  It’s a move, not unlike karate, or kick boxing.  The full weight of the buttocks, aided by centrifugal force, delivered, with the force of a battering ran, against the opposing player.

“Where’d the idea come from, Brad?”  The name and play came from an Australian Blue Heeler, Named Max.  Max’s owner, who requested to remain anonymous, told me, “Since Max’s lost weight–he’s been friskier.  He’s “Butt Slapped” our other dog, Maggie, repeatedly, across the backyard.  So far, she’s not “Butt Slapped” him back.  Max has successfully “Butt Slapped” at nearby dog parks.

Right away I wondered–why couldn’t this move be used in pro football?  Nobody could have been more shocked, than I was, when one of the teams was interested.  I’ve signed a legally binding agreement not to reveal any details about which team it was.

It’s certainly going to be interesting to see how the “Max Butt Slap” plays out this Sunday in Super Bowl XLIX.  So far, the league hasn’t had anything to say.  Will one of the teams “Butt Slap” their way to victory?  With the “Puppy Bowl,” and “Butt Slap” combined–has XLIX  gone to the dogs?  If this works, then professional football, will have advanced to the rear.

 

 

Onward March

What’s left to celebrate?  Mother Nature is giving it her best with snow and ice.  Grocery store shelves are bare as shoppers stock up on essentials–eggs, bread, milk.  And what’s up with buying snow shovels with each new storm?  Do people throw them away afterward?

In the Deep South mass hysteria prevails.  What if it snows here?  Were those snowflakes?  “Relax–those were only heavy raindrops.”

Holiday merchandise has been cleared away at retail outlets across the country.  Valentines Day is the next retailing opportunity.

In this part of the country, it’s not straight to Valentines Day.  Mardi Gras comes next.  Valentines Day plays second fiddle.  This is all we’ll hear about from now until Fat Tuesday.  Mardi Gras merchandise is displayed everywhere.  Let’s hear it for the magenta, green, and gold.

Of course to locals, New Orleans is the elephant in the room.  It takes credit for the celebration.  And, no doubt, their celebration is noisier and larger.  Mobile is where the Mardi Gras celebration started.  Mobile’s celebration prides itself on being family orientated.

Parades, parades, and more parades.  “Throw me some beads. Throw me some beads!”  Some use modified fishing nets to catch beads.  Adults that steal trinkets from children, in my opinion, are lowlifes.