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Monday, July 18, 2011

Weekend in Review

The impromptu kid-less Saturday was quite interesting.  Instead of a day at the pool with hundreds of others we stayed pretty much in bed or couch watching movies.  Felt a bit like college after a particularly drunken Friday.  It has been about 10 years since one of these Saturdays.  We managed to get out of the house for about 2 hours, to see a movie.  Our horror to come out of the darkened theatre and find violent daylight.  There was a moment I expected to turn into dust when I glanced too directly into it.

I wrote about the brilliant "Beginners" that night.  I urge you to seek it out.  This is one of the smartest and emotionally rewarding movie I have seen in a while.

Whereas Saturday was a day or recovery and remorse, Sunday was cathartic.  And would you believe it starts in Northern Ireland?  Again!!!  Just as we finished etching Rory McIlory's name in the record books another Irishmen gets his.  Darren Clarke capped off a strong weekend fighting off a Mickelson charge and winning The Open in Sandwich.  Love writing that sentence...  now I am in the mood for an open faced turkey sandwich.

Clarke is beyond worthy and a good champion.  I remember him falling short a few years back at this, or some other event.  His Ryder Cup appearances are always special too.  In those failed efforts I learned about the man.  How, just a few years ago, he lost his wife to breast cancer at age 39.  Just 6 weeks after her death he was representing Europe against the US.  His wife had urged him to play whether she was alive or dead.  He fought back tears and battled gracefully.  His calm demeanor and mental strength contributed mightily over the weekend.  This is a feel good story and I intend to raise several Guinness to celebrate.

In a way, I can say the same thing about the Japanese Women's soccer team.  The simple and poignant statement they made before each game comes to mind.  "To Our Fans Around the World.  We Thank You For Your Support."  That was the banner the team brought out and showed the crowd (and millions watching) before systematically breaking down its opponents and shocking the World.

Say what you will about penalty kicks deciding the champion.  I hate it and wish it would go away.  But let's be honest:  Japan deserved to win yesterday.  They did not have the best keeper.  They, like many, had no answer for Wambach's head.  They fell behind twice (LATE both times) and tied it!!!  They were not as skilled and it did NOT matter.  Stick around long enough...  let the other team get too confident...  STRIKE!!

I was a little shocked to see a defensive meltdown in front of the US goal.  I was not, however, shocked to see the ball in the back of the net once mistake was made.

And when Wambach put a header in extra time I was not convinced that was it either.  Japan went and US'd us.  After all, who thought we were beating Brazil last week?

You play the entire game.  You do it with grace and style.  You do it with humility and sportsmanship.

We did that.  Japan did it a bit better.

And with its Country facing enormous challenges in the years/decades ahead I say hear!hear!  If this is there Miracle on Ice 1980 Lake Placid moment how I can be down on it?

I implored our soccer team to wear their Godzilla uniforms.

Finally, the most redemption of all occurred on the diamond last night.  No, I am not referring to my beloved Astros.  I fear they may lose 110 games.

The adult wiffle ball league held its first game of the season.  4 on 4 automatics with adult beverages.  Pitchers coming from all angles and speeds.  Batters bringing their own taped bats, each with its own story.

"This one's been in the garage for about 30 years."  Could have fooled me.  I mean, when was the last time you swung one and it broke in half while you held the barrel in your hand.  I think it was the first wiffle ball bat ever made.

The bring your own cooler idea was a good one.  Mexico, the US and Belgium all represented in this clearly international event.  Home runs were hit.  Strikeouts too.  And the trash talking took center stage.

Every town should do it.  2 hours a week to act like a complete juvenile.  I am thinking full leagues with obnoxious t shirts displaying their prentious d-bag names.  "The Plastics"  "Balls Out"  "Take a Whiff of This!"

Can I convince someone to build a park?

You get my point.  I refer to the movie "The Idiots" again.  The overall notion is interesting.  Take a look and let me know what you think.

And should the mood strike take a listen/look at this too...  Replacements "Here Comes the Regular"  Tragically Hip "Grace Too"  Ryan Adams "Magick"  Gomez "Options"  Could not see them the other night due to a cancellation.  Singer has laryngitis :-(

Eels 7.28 is next show.  To wet your beak..

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