Clinton, South Carolina, Friday, August 7, 2015, 10:02 a.m.
For every ending is there a beginning. And vice-versa.
Endings have been prevalent this year. I miss David Letterman. And Don Imus, who isn’t on TV anymore. And Jon Stewart, who hosted The Daily Show for the last time last night. And Brian Williams, the only man who lost his job for lying about Iraq. And Craig Ferguson, the late-night host no one ever talked about but should have.
I also can’t seem to find episodes of Foyle’s War, which, to me, is merely the greatest show ever on television.
Baseball season is winding down, particularly for Boston Red Sox fans. Last night I got home from a meeting in Greenville just in time to see the Yankees defeat them, 2-1. Excruciating losses have been the rule this year. The difference between a good Red Sox season and a bad Red Sox season is that, during a bad Red Sox season, I only half-watch the games. Bad Red Sox seasons are good for reading, writing and playing guitar.
Another difference is hits with two out and men in scoring position.
Football is on the horizon, and most people are optimistic before the teams actually start playing and hopes have been dashed. I’m scheduled to be at every single Clinton High School game, and I’m looking forward to it if for no other reason than they’re bound to be better. Last year the Red Devils, winners of eight state championships and two in which my brother and I played a role (his greater than mine), won only twice. It seems reasonable to expect them to do better.
The Furman Paladins (knights on horseback, once aligned with the emperor Charlemagne), representing my alma mater, and the Presbyterian Blue Hose, of my hometown, are starting to rustle on the practice fields. Furman, coached by my old friend Bruce Fowler, is on the comeback trail. The Blue Hose, whose coach, Harold Nichols, once quarterbacked teams about which I wrote, had a marvelous season last year. This year they will have to be better because all the teams they caught unawares will be better braced for their assaults.
PC stands for Presbyterian College, not politically correct, but that is still no excuse to call them PC College, which may be less politically correct but is also redundant. Go, go, Presbyterian College College!
At Furman, of course, everyone is accustomed to yelling “FU, all the time!”
All the time.
Few realize what a wonderful season the Blue Hose — it’s a Scottish warrior, by the way, “those blue-stockinged Presbyterians,” a term the aristocrats used for dismissal in the days of yore — experienced last year. The record was 6-5, but three of the losses were to schools that played in the Football Bowl Subdivision (i.e., big boys) and actually played in bowl games. They were Northern Illinois, Ole Miss, and North Carolina State. The other two were schools that competed in the Football Championship Subdivision (i.e., they theoretically are about PC’s size and speed) playoffs, Coastal Carolina and Liberty.
In reasonable matchups, the Blue Hose were 5-0, and one of the conquests was at the Paladins’ expense, which I deeply regret.
The season was one of football’s small miracles. Stern challenges await both the Paladins and the Blue Hose. Furman begins at home against Coastal Carolina, then travels to Virginia Tech and Central Florida. Presbyterian opens with road games versus Miami of Ohio and Charlotte. The latter is the University of North Carolina at Charlotte if one is a student but merely Charlotte if one is a sport. The third game is at home against Campbell, which excites me because it will match Blue Hose against Camels, and one can throw out the record books when those two get together.
I am looking forward to going to these games and writing about many of them.
Football pops up in all three of my novels: The Audacity of Dope, The Intangibles, and the brand-new Crazy of Natural Causes. Please consider reading them. Take a look at them here: http://www.amazon.com/Monte-Dutton/e/B005H3B144/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1416767492&sr=8-1