I've Given Up Giving Up

OK, admit it. How many times during the Oregon game did you write Stanford off? We know who we are. Most of us are the same lames who will insist we were there when Garcia's FG beat Michigan in ‘72, Bonds drilled #73 and Langford booted the Big Game winner in '74.

For shame.

Some of you shame-free types, late some evening in the distant future as we all swap whoppers with kindred spirits, might even insist you were there at Duck-Zero last week as the refuse-to-lose Card hung around and hung around and hung around long enough to hang one on the quackers.

Double-secret shame.

Hey, these people in Eugene are too much.  I mean, did you hear about the roadside poster on the route to the Autzen Stadium that said something like, "Bring Tiger and We'll Beat Him, Too"?

Shame on them, too.

As for me, I shall use this pulpit for purgatory purposes right now.  My name's Gail and I'm a recovering defeatist.

I lost count out of how many times I flicked it off and flicked it in Saturday afternoon. You should see the damage to the helpless little remote – not to mention my screen door as I stomped outside repeatedly to regain composure by howling epithets to the football gods.

It all began modestly enough.  So sure was I of an "L" after Fasani went down I geared my emotion thermostat so low I need tweezers to pull it back up.  I figured, hey, let's just get this one out of the way, and maybe – just MAYbe – we can catch UCLA the following Saturday taking us too lightly and giving us the chance to put an even rarer, more valuable skin on the wall.

Yep, I'd get to know hunger and homelessness if I had to write inspirational nonfiction.

But, injuries aside, as you watched Stanford match the Ducks TD for TD that afternoon, something akin to the old feeling returned.  The feeling you had that day in 1990 when the Card looked woeful in the first half against Number One Notre Dame, then hung around long enough to steal it from right under Touchdown Jesus' outstretched arms. 

The same way you felt a couple of years later, back at South Bend, on TV, when Walsh II told anyone with a microphone as he headed into the locker room at half-time that "we're just outmanned right now."  Then came back to stuff the Irish again.

It was sort of like that….but different.  This was the football equivalent of the Rhode Island "…and he was FOULED!" hoops titanic in '98: improbable, implausible, and finally – indelible. 

This one, properly rationed, can provide 99% of adult daily requirement of inspiration for the duration of this season and, perhaps, into the next one.  Hell, it might even turn me, and my screen-door slamming buddy Anne Thracts, into friggin' cheerleaders.  At least, accelerate my ten-steps-to-clean-optimism program.

You just know it can't do anything but help next Saturday.  Go Card!


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