A Wolfpacker's Perspective

LET ME TELL YOU A TRUE STORY. It's Saturday, September 6th, 2003, around three o'clock PM. North Carolina State has just lost to Wake Forest in football and the entire country is in a funk.

In sunny downtown Burbank, California, two guys enter a grocery store to buy treats and cheer themselves up. One guy, our hero (we'll call him "Chris"), goes to the snack aisle to grab some Funyons while the other guy (we'll call him "Brendan") goes to buy some Shinerbock beer. Since Brendan (what a surprise) doesn't have any cash on him, he decides to purchase the treats on his debit card and Chris (our hero) will give him cash. So far, so good. Then the cashier asks to see Brendan's ID since he looks like he may be under thirty (and it's store policy to ID anyone who looks under the age of thirty). Brendan is under the age of thirty, he's 29; boy that cashier has a keen eye.

Quick sidenote here, why under the age of thirty? If someone looks like they're thirty they could just as easily look like they're thirty-one. And if they're thirty-one, they're in the clear. But just as easily, someone who looks thirty could look twenty-nine and in that case would need to be ID-ed. This policy is confusing and allows for too much error. The policy on ID-ing people should be this, for men: if you can't grow a full beard, we ID you. If you can grow a full beard, all you need is your method of payment. And if you can grow a full beard and you're under the age of 21? Congratulations kid, you win (and we'll be seeing a lot of you while your peach-fuzz-faced friends send you on beer run after beer run until they legally come of age).

For women the policy should be just as simple. It should be: would you hook up with this chick with no fear of Johnny Law coming down on you? If the answer is "yes," then sell her those wine coolers she's got in front of you and increase your sales. This is not a question of morality, by the way, it is one of practicality.

ANYWAY, back to Brendan and I... uh, I mean "Chris." So Brendan gets ID-ed and he hands her his Georgia drivers license (he's from Atlanta). She hands it back to him and tells him that she can't sell him the beer; they don't take out of state drivers licenses. She said California grocery stores only accept California drivers licenses. Chris would have been flabbergasted if he were anywhere but in California. Remember that this is a state that is $38 billion in debt and practically lives off tourism (which by definition means people coming here to visit from other places), so it makes complete sense to refuse out of state drivers licenses as valid proof of ID.

Brendan had a great point, though. He asked the lady that if he lept over the counter and cracked her in the head, and the police came to arrest him, how does she think they'd identify him? Dental records? No, they would look at this very same Georgia drivers license her grocery store refused to acknowledge as a valid form of identification. SO, if it's good enough for the Burbank Police Department, isn't it good enough for them? We left the store after a brief conversation with the manager and the mutual understanding that we are not welcome back. Ever.

Now here's the kicker, California Governor Gray Davis just signed a bill into law that allows illegal immigrants to obtain legal, California drivers licenses. This is not a misprint. The same illegal aliens that Phil Collins so soulfully sang about can now legally obtain California drivers licenses. What that means to me is that an illegal alien can buy beer in a California grocery store, but Brendan can't. How do you think that makes Brendan feel? AND, I'm going to have to go on all the beer runs when I'm hanging with Brendan because he's lame and has an out of state drivers license. Therefore, the way I see it I have two choices: stop hanging out with Brendan OR make sure there's an illegal alien with me when I do hang out with Brendan so that someone not wearing my underwear can buy the beer. WWZBD (what would Zoe Baird do)? Hmmm….

I have no idea how the state legislators justify knowingly giving a valid, legal, California drivers license to someone who is in this country illegally. What's next? Making pedophiles perform their community service at the Boys and Girls Clubs? Why are we rewarding criminals? Steal from my store, you're a thief and you're going to jail. But you buy something from my store, you're a patron and I thank you. You enter this country illegally, you're a criminal. Enter it legally, you're a neighbor and we welcome you with open arms. It's the same principle. The only possible reason I can think of for giving illegals a drivers license would be because in California you can use your drivers license to register to vote. So…by allowing a large number of illegals to obtain drivers licenses, these same people may, just may, somehow register to vote. And if they did register to vote, just who do you think they'd vote for? How very Boss Tweed of our state's mayor.

Don't get the wrong idea, I'm not some bigot with an inferiority complex. I'm just a guy who lives smack dab in the vortex of this situation. I think immigration is the most important aspect of American life. After all, we were all immigrants at one point. Having said that, I do think that things would be considerably different if Sweden was south of us and California was being flooded with six foot tall blondes. And it would be different if California was beginning to resemble the finer places in Mexico like Cabo San Lucas or Puerto Villarta, but it's not. It's slowly morphing into a giant, west coast, Tijuana. Any day now I fully expect to see chickens and goats roaming free across my lawn. Not that I don't like chickens and goats, I'm just saying…

But it all comes back to one question, who has more right to buy beer in California, Brendan or an illegal alien? Well, Brendan cheers for the Wolfpack so I'm standing by the guy with the valid Georgia drivers license (at least until I find an illegal immigrant wearing an N.C. State shirt, then it'll be time to reevaluate).

AS FOR OUR UPCOMING game against Ohio State. After last week's meltdown against Wake, some people are convinced that we are facing impending doom this Saturday in Columbus. I'm not so sure. If Chuck were ansy, I'd be ansy. Maybe Chuck's on valium and that's why he's not ansy. Maybe I should take valium so that I wouldn't be ansy, like Chuck. I don't know, but what I do know is that I'm ready to cheer like hell again this Saturday.

It took me a few days to get over the Wake game, but I'm back on the wagon and ready for another round. So maybe we're not BCS material. But maybe we are. Maybe this game puts us back on track. Maybe Wake was just a hiccup in our season…or maybe not. I guess we'll find out on Saturday before a national audience, won't we? By all accounts we should get crushed by Ohio State. If Wake can move on us at will, what will the Buckeyes do? But as they say, "that's why they play the game." And I, for one, will be right in front of my TV cheering away.

No prediction this week because I don't want to jinx us. I'll edit this later, though, and add the actual final score (hindsight is 20/10). Stay safe and stay tuned…

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