What a wild week it's been. First, we have a Nobel Peace winner "non-violently" threaten the life of the President of the United States while speaking to more than 200 children – in the President's home state no less. Then we have tree lovers pose as human shields by taking up residence in a tree that's scheduled for tear down. Only problem is they cut away a significant portion of the branches to make room for themselves and in doing so, scientists say, basically killed the tree. Ahhh. Liberals. Crazy little rascals.
In the sports world, not much made sense here either.
First, the ESPY awards were handed out and the winners were announced on Wednesday yet the show doesn't air on television until Sunday. What is this the Olympics? Were this year's ESPY's held in Torino, Italy?
Second, Pac Man Jones was pulled over by the police…again. This time, one of his citations was for having the license plate from another car he owned on the car he was driving. Seriously, who does this? How is this guy so completely incapable of making a single wise decision? It's just one bonehead move after another. Too bad for him NFL Europe is done because there's no way Goodell lets him back into the NFL if he keeps this nonsense up.
Third, the NCAA handed down harsh penalties against the University of Oklahoma in forcing the Sooners to vacate their wins from the 2005 season. The NCAA stated that Oklahoma failed to monitor the employment of its players. How can the NCAA let ex-Oklahoma basketball coach, Kelvin Sampson, off the hook for knowingly violating recruiting policies but penalize Bob Stoops for proactively uncovering the infractions by his players, suspending those players, and then reporting them to the NCAA? As usual the message from the NCAA is…actually, I don't what the heck their message is anymore.
Fourth, Dan Patrick resigns out of nowhere from the mega network he helped build.
Like a said, not much made sense this week.
Of course, closing out the workweek with a Friday the 13th could have something to do with it. Then again, it could be people just getting a bit crazy from the summer heat.
Speaking of crazy, I hung out with my omniscient Goddaughter tonight, which was extremely enlightening. Conversations with four year olds are like that, though. The child literally knows everything. When I asked her who said, "I think, therefore I am," she simply replied, "I know." No need to give the answer (Rene Descartes). She just knows it. I'm telling you, that kind of intelligence you can't teach.
Naturally, since she knows everything, I proceeded to test the validity of several hunches I have regarding the upcoming football season. Her answers follow each statement.
Louis Holmes is going to dominate this year. "I know."
Willie T will throw at least 25 TDs. "I know."
Willie T will have a game where he throws touchdown strikes to four different people. "I know."
Mike Thomas will be ranked amongst the nation's best receivers. "I know."
Arizona will shut out at least two opponents. "I know."
Devin Ross will take both a kick off and a punt to the house this season. "I know."
There will be at least two games where an opponent doesn't throw a single pass to Antoine Cason's side of the field. "I know."
Spencer Larson will have a game where he makes 15 tackles. "I know."
Arizona will have five wins heading into the USC game. "I know."
Arizona will have six conference wins this season. "I know."
This is a lot of fun. "I know."
My favorite exchange of the night:
Me: "Is there anything you don't know?"
Mila: "I don't know."
While on the subject of being at home, things here have somewhat mellowed. No more power outages. No more clanking of bottles late at night. In fact, our building's developer promoted the one employee, who we'll call ML(like MJ, but different), who actually gets stuff done around the property, to serve as President of our Homeowners Board for the next year. He replaces a guy who graduated, as it turns out, from UCLA, which clearly explains all the problems we were having.
On a very positive note, let's give it up to two of Arizona's own. First, Luke Walton inked a six year, $30 million dollar deal with the Lakers. This is a great move. Second, Taryne Mowatt won Best Female Athlete at this year's ESPY Awards which again, air on Sunday.
Back to the ESPY's for a beat. I'm actually debating if I should watch the show this weekend even though I already know everything that's going to happen. Can the ESPY's have that same effect as great sports movies do? You know, that whole, "I've seen Jimmy Chipwood nail the game-winning jumper over and over, but what if it rims out this time." Or, "I've seen Danny Noonan drop this six-footer a thousand times, but what if he doesn't? What if Carl gets distracted (which, you have to admit, is an entirely plausible theory) and he doesn't explode the TNT at just the right moment?" It could happen.
So, perhaps, if I'm bored enough, I'll tune in.
In honor of Walton's contract, here's a great story I love telling. My buddy Troy's sister-in-law used to date Walton's roommate when Luke first moved to Los Angeles. She offered to take an NBA ball to Luke for him to autograph. When presented with the amazing opportunity to have other Lakers also sign the ball, including Kobe, Troy said, "If anyone signs that ball besides Walton then just throw it away."
Spoken like a die hard Zona fan.
Speaking of Arizona, many props must go out to our football fans who've embraced Mike Stoops, his coaching staff and everything they've strived to achieve in bringing us back from the Dark Ages. Seasons of 3-8, 3-8 and 6-6 have not deterred anyone (except my friend Howser) from fully supporting the program. Fans are piling into the stadium for home games, making road trips with the team, and infiltrating bars from Manhattan Beach, California to New York City to watch our games and root on the Cats. The experience has been amazing and we haven't really won anything yet. Once the wins start coming, forget about it. Like one e-mailer from Oklahoma told me the other day, "Tucson's like a sleeping giant."
You know what. Our Sooner friend is right, all the way down to his Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamato WWII reference. Tucson is a sleeping giant, waiting to be stirred. I remember the 1992 football season as if it was yesterday and what it was like to storm the field after we pounded top-ranked Washington. Believe me, this year's squad is every bit as capable of achieving the many great things that that "Desert Swarm" team accomplished, and more. Arizona has the defense. They have the quarterback. They have the coach.
They even have the profound wisdom of my four year old Goddaughter. You know.