Notes from Wonderland: a cat, a game and Mosh Pit

Sometimes the ideas flow and I'll get column ideas in my sleep. Other times they come in the shower or at the gym. Sometimes they are harder to find. This week I was set to write a column about the end of the Utah/Arizona game, but two of our writers staked claim to it. Suddenly, I was out of ideas and when I'm out of ideas I ramble. Somewhere in the middle of rambling I get an idea. This column will be about a cat, football, video games and a boy named "Mosh Pit".

Bratty died a week ago Thursday. Bratty was my girlfriend's 20-year old cat. At the age of 20 her kidneys gave out. She fought long and hard, but after two plus decades she just quit working.

Bratty was all of six pounds and looked a lot like a little bobcat. I joked that she looked like a cross between Wilbur and Baxter D. Bobcat, the mascot of the Diamondbacks. She looked like a kitten even though she was old enough to vote.

I'm a dog person. Always have been. In fact, I'm allergic to cats. My old roommates had a cat named Jimmy who I dubbed, "My Nemesis." Jimmy loved to mess with me. That shouldn't surprise you, cats are evil. He puked in my bed, put his tail in my eyes and shed on my pillows. Our encounters where much like when Jerry Seinfeld used to see Newman with Kramer.


I'm not a cat fan, but I couldn't help but like Bratty. The first time Stacey introduced me to the cat the little six-pound hairball head-butted me. Not a little tap, this elderly cat hit me so hard I thought she'd hurt herself.

"That means she wants you to pet her," Stacey explained.

From then on I promised the little cat I'd pet her EVERYTIME she head-butted me. I stayed true to my word until the end.

Utah fans feel they got screwed by the officials in their loss to Arizona. I've seen the replay and although it looked like Josh Lyman was in bounds, I wouldn't swear on it. I couldn't tell for sure, but there is a chance that part of his knee hit the end line. If that is the case he was out of bounds. I think he was in, but I'm still not positive.

What Utah fans are conveniently forgetting is that a Utah player clearly fumbled two plays before, but the refs ruled the play down. The fumble is more clear-cut than the catch. He fumbled, no argument.

Ron McBride had some choice comments after the game, "TD. Game's over. All I got to say. Period."

Whoa! Hold up there coach. The touchdown would have come with 38 seconds left. While that is not a lot of time, it may have been enough for the Cats. In case he hadn't been watching, the Utes could not stop the passing attack of Arizona. There is more than a good chance that in 38 seconds the Wildcats could have gotten into field goal range. That game would have come down to Sean Keel's right foot. Would he have made it? Is Keel good in pressure situations? Who knows, but that game was not over.

I recently bought the new EA Sports college football game for my Playstation. Man this thing is cool. I feel like my dad when we first got Atari. I am amazed with the technology. While my dad was floored with the graphics on Ms. Pacman, I am amazed with this game. The detail is amazing. They have Arizona stadium perfectly rendered. The Cats look like the Cats. It keeps stats. I can run option. It is so cool.

Once again I am coaching freshman football at Cholla High School. This year I have a great cast of characters and some great kids. I have a middle linebacker who benches 240 and is ripped. A 14-year old should not be ripped. I have a pair of defensive tackles who are each flirting with the 300-pound mark. Better yet they are known as "Mosh Pit" and "Big Sal". I've got two linebackers who are under 5'3" and are as tough as they come. A player who knows almost no English, but can say, "I want to play defense. I can hit, yes?"

I have a tight end who can't figure where to line up, but seems to make plays even form the wrong position. Our running back weighs 95-pounds. One of my defensive ends looks like a safety, while one of my safeties look nine years old. My strong safety is 14-years old and has tattoos. My quarterback can throw 60-yards, but has trouble with slants. We have a 70-year old assistant coach and a girl who has played more Pop Warner games than anyone on our team.

We have all the makings of a great comedy. All that is missing is Walter Mathau and Sinbad.

Hope you aren't tired of my ramblings. My dogs are sleeping. Usually this is the time Bratty would sneak out, steal their food and walk across the keyboard, but tonight there is no Bratty. She'll be missed. [Brad Allis is the editor of Cat Tracks magazine and His columns run on or near Wednesdays. You can reach him at]

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