Friday, October 23, 2009

Hip Deep in Pie (Gratuitous 'Sports Night' Reference [episode: Dana and the Deep Blue Sea])

OK. We're deep in it. Things are officially not going well.

This season is a struggle.

It is not hopeless. But it is not going well. I was in attendance last week as Georgia politely handed us our ass. We were pretty bad, having breakdowns in all phases of the game. However, I still think that our defense is good, and I believe that our special teams can be good and that our offense can be not-horrible. Improbable? Absolutely. But still possible.

Expectations soared this year. We won our first bowl game in a billion years last year. We had lots of returning players and a highly ranked recruiting class. And we. have. sucked.

Hard.

We're 2-5, and we'll be expected to lose all the rest of our games. By a decent margin. This will be us:


Well, maybe that's unfair. We're not always totally ridiculous. Sometimes we start off strong and then sort of meander our way along, sputtering out at the end:


So. What do we do? How do we respond? Good question. Tough question. It's hard to know. I'm kinda stuck in inertia-land with regards to my Vandy fandom. I'm definitely in inertia-land in my real life.

But we have to believe. Right? Surely believing is good, even though it often causes us pain.

Chuck Klosterman has a new book. You can read an excerpt about football here. An excerpt of the excerpt:
I don't know what I see when I watch football. It must be something insane, because I should not enjoy it as much as I do. I must be seeing something so personal and so universal that understanding this question would tell me everything I need to know about who I am, and maybe I don't want that to happen. But perhaps it's simply this: Football allows the intellectual part of my brain to evolve, but it allows the emotional part to remain unchanged. It has a liberal cerebellum and a reactionary heart. And this is all I want from everything, all the time, always.

[There's also talk of assuming (incorrectly) that you know fundamental truths of life/football and talk of why husbands and wives disagree on football. I heartily recommend you check it out.]

Chuck wins. Not only because he's smart and cool and successful. But the idea that you could know what you want from everything, all the time, always, really makes me jealous. I just made some "healthy" jambalaya tonight. I wish I had better celery, for starters. I also wish I had that stuff Chuck wrote about. But celery would have been a good start.

I believe we can win tomorrow. It may not be smart, but I believe. I have a reactionary heart for Vandy football. And if we lose? (and we likely will.) I'll continue believing in Vandy football. It's helpful for me to do so. In the same way that I believe I'm going to reverse the trend of gaining 40 pounds in the last 4 months. In the same way that I believe I'm going to reverse the trend of ignoring my to-do lists. In the same way that I believe I'm going to be happy one day. Why not believe in Vandy football? Believing only in likelihoods is boring, it doesn't interest me, and it sure doesn't relate to the things that I really and truly care about. So bring on the long shots!

We might be on the outside looking in right now:
But we'll get there. I'll get there. You'll get there. Vandy'll get there. Let's keep believing. Chuck demands it. And that fish will be delicious when we finally catch it.

Dynamite.

ps - Vandy/South Carolina is on ESPNU tomorrow at 6:00 p.m. Central. Go Dores!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

VANDY FOOTBALL: IDENTITY CRISIS, OR IS CRISIS SIMPLY OUR IDENTITY?

OK. Let's just admit it. The Vandy Sports Listserv has let you down.

I get that. In fact, I am intimately familiar with all the ways in which I am supremely skilled at letting people down. Hell, I'm so good, I can let myself down several times a day, and sneak in an extra letdown during my lunch break. I'm just that talented...at being crappy.

But Vandy needs all of us Listservians right now. We are at a crucial point in the season. The football team has, overall, been very disappointing. We are 2-2, with a mostly brutal games remaining on the schedule. We will be favored in, at most, one more game this year (vs. Army).

We played well last Saturday against Rice (Rice is a poor football team). We played abysmally 2 weeks ago against Mississippi State. What have we learned thus far in the season? Is our scattershot performance a product of random chance, like a (horribly cute) lottery?


Or are there clues, hidden meanings withing our seemingly random and unpredictable record of good and bad performances?

Birds on the Wires from Jarbas Agnelli on Vimeo.

Good questions, both. We--as people and as Vandy fans--want everything to have a reason. If there’s a reason, if there’s a meaning, then we can understand things and work to change them. There are some identifiable reasons for our play so far. First, a reason that we haven’t totally bombed: the defense. The defense has been solid against some really talented offenses. They have kept us in all our games. Thanks, defense. We love you.

Unfortunately, there are also reasons for our less than stellar performances:
1-Our wide receivers have been horrendous. On the bright side, they made some good plays this weekend against Rice. Here’s where we, the optimistic Listservians, interpret these actions as evidence of growth (though, to be fair, they couldn’t go any lower after the first three games).
2-Offensive line. We return a ton of experienced linemen, but they have largely failed to consistently open holes for our awesome freshman running backs.
3-Larry Smith. Larry is cool. I love him. He’s made some great plays. He’s also made some bad plays. I have definitely not given up on Larry. He’s new to starting. Experience can only help him. Over time, we should see an increase in the frequency of good plays and a decrease in bad plays. Right? …
4-Atrocious, ultra-conservative offensive game planning. Another rant for another day, but it's not looking good on that front.

So, we have a crappy situation. And we have a few factors that go part of the way towards explaining how we got to this situation. But really, who knows? The ball, it bounces. So far, we've had some pretty unfortunate bounces.

Luckily, during the season, there's something to take our mind off these questions-without-a-real-answer. The next game. A chance to fix the problems that have plagued us. And it just shows up every Saturday! That's amazing. It's much easier than real life. In real life, or at least mine, it takes a lot more effort to get past that 'how exactly did I manage to lose all those games?' I am much better at the paralyzed with guilt/fear/shame/uncertainty thing than I am at that growth thing our wide receivers are (hopefully) going through.

Is that why I have such an affinity for Vandy football? Do I identify with the steadfast diligence, the forever-trying-to-make-the-move-to-respectability? Or do I love that, due to mediocrity, Vandy is forever-flush-with-hope-for-growth? Maybe both? I don't know.

But football is easy. Our next chance will be here in a just a few days. We play Ole Miss, who we narrowly beat last year, and who is ranked 18th in the nation. Ole Miss is really good. We should be scared. But the game is inevitable, and that makes our choice an easy one. I choose to believe that we will grow. Instead of focusing on all the depressing facts of our season heretofore, I choose to damn any and all torpedoes and proclaim
We still have a chance. Our chances aren't great, but they are still greater than zero. I choose to believe that we'll end up this awesome:


Because, honestly, if a football team with players as awesome as Zac Stacy doesn't have a chance, then what chance do assholes like me have of getting it together in real life?

So fight on, fellow Commodores. The deck is stacked against our football team. And the deck will sooner or later be stacked against you. We must believe that we can pull out of it, that better things await. Just because we won a bowl game last year doesn't mean that we have used up our lot of happiness and awesomeness. Badassery is our birthright, as Commodores and as humans. Claim you birthright, Commodores. Claim it, Listservians. And if all goes well, I might even be able to claim it myself one of these days. (Ed note: I'll probably just order pizza and look up cute animal pictures rather than actually claim it myself. But that doesn't mean the advice isn't solid.)

Dynamite.

PS - sorry if this Listserv doesn't make a lot of sense. It's been a long time, and we're still working ourselves back into game shape. I've got some things about the Listserv and about life to figure out.

(I only wish my confusion was so cute to watch.)

pps - In case you are interested in Vandy sports blogs that are more reliable, interesting, and insightful than mine, here are a select few:
Moral Victory
Save the Shield
Vanderbilt Sports Line
All: highly recommended!

Monday, September 14, 2009

In Praise of My Favorite Hepstorian

My brother was on NPR! He showed up on 848, a nifty show on WBEZ, Chicago Public Radio. He edited a book on jive talk. That’s right, jive. Diggeth thou?

Some notes to guide your listening:

· Over/Under on number of times my brother says "Absolutely" in a 9 minute interview --- 27. (There is obviously not much left up to interpretation in history for my brother. He has it all nailed down pretty exactly.)

· Throughout: Tommy railroading this Richard Steele character. Steele obviously has no sense of the rhythms of a jive-talking professor, and can't help but step on the T-Bag's flow over and over.

· Throughout: The dragging out of sounds. Tommy thinks this produces a dominant lisp, but what it more obviously leads to is that signature throatiness, a sortof "If I knew how to whisper, I'd be doing it right now", or maybe an "I'm in my office and people can hear me out in the hall, so I need to be quiet but I need to make sure I'm not whispering." If you try that, you can go one of two routes: you can get breathy, or you can use as little air flow as possible. The Bag has definitely chosen the latter route. Signature example at 3:03: "He colleeeeccctttsss..."

· 2:50: "If you hear that, you know she might be a little alcoholic... [creepy giggle]" Wow. Nothing to add here. I’m just proud to say that’s my closest blood relative.

Since I know this has only whetted your appetite: my brother’s Amazon listings (with more on the way!).

Now, I know this might come as both a surprise and a disappointment, but I will not be using any jive talk in this Listserv update. I know, sad, right? Why, you might then ask, am I such a killjoy? Well, I hate to break it to you, Listerv, but I am old. I am now in my fourth decade on this earth, and I can no longer muster the energy to conjure up superficial, ambiguously-racially-insensitive jokes about a dialect I know only from Airplane.

So, to repeat (because I’m old, and that’s how I tumble…no, roll). I’m old. I’m—to euphemize—experienced. As a 30 year old, I feel fully qualified to describe my experience watching the Vandy-LSU game with a good ole, down home nugget of folksy wisdom: “The more things change, the more things stay the same.”

Vandy—differences:

· Throwing quarterback (not unheard of, but different from the past several years).

· Athletic, promising, awesome running backs (that’s right, plural).

· Holes opened by offensive line—against a stout defense—for backs to run through.

Vandy—things staying the same:

· Breakdowns – wide receivers made me cringe. They failed the “Mom test” at least 3 times. (missing plays that my mom could make in real life). Seriously, I almost punched the TV’s in the sports bar, even though I knew it couldn’t hurt those jerks in real life.

· Defense: This one is in a good way. Still solid, perhaps even more so. Decent against the run, decent against the pass, lots of bend but not breaking. [For sad-faced developments, skip ahead 10 lines.]

· Overpowered offense. Even with what seemed to me to be demonstrable improvements in so many phases of offense, we still sucked overall. 7 points! Poop! A brand new, no huddle, spread offense that produced the exact same results as last year’s offense! Is it Ted Cain? Is it personnel? Is it something inherent in the spiritual essence of a Vanderbilt offense? Another thing staying the same: I have no idea how to diagnose problems.

Bottom Line: Zac Stacy, our freshman RB, can take me to the prom any time. He’s a badass.

Additional note: We had some horrible injuries that will really make this year tough. Ryan Hamilton, stalwart senior safety, tore his pectoral muscle (I can’t imagine exerting my chest areas strongly enough to tear those muscles from the bones to which the good lord attached them). James Williams, starting right tackle (and only a redshirt sophomore!) hurt his ankle. Both are out……………………………………………….for the season. Gulp.

We’ve never had a lot of room for injuries. Our defense is officially being tested.

Luckily, we play Rice next week. They are, by all statistical measures, bad. We. Must. Win.

This ‘new’, ‘innovative’ offense has a LOT to prove. The defense will unfortunately have a new face and, thus, has a lot to prove. At some point in the middle of his interview, my brother calls jazz the music of the dispossessed. There’s some potential metaphor there for Vandy football fans that I’d prefer not to have to work out with my tiny brain. So please, Dores, help me out here. Beat a crappy team, preferably by a lot. Don’t make me have to think!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If we win, we can simply continue down the path to consecutive bowl games and a reputation unmatched since the first quarter of the 20th century.

Next week, maybe we even dig up some cute animal photos from the internet. Diggeth thou?

Dynamite.


ps - no, I'm not addressing the fact that it's been eons since I've updated the Listserv. You knew that already, and it just kind of happened. I've been really, really, really, really really, really really really, reallyreallyreallyreally busy. Just swamped. But now? We're back. How could I not be? It's football season, the professional football team in my town has 5 Vandy players on its roster, and we're finally getting a summer in Chicago now that it's late September. Life is good. Be well, Listervians, and root for those Dores.


pps - OK, you're right, I can't resist cute animal photos, even if I didnt' bother to work them into the post. Here you go!!!!!


ppps-We're 1-1. Stay tuned for more bigger-picture analysis/hopes/fears. If you publish it, they will come...


pppps - Listserv friend and all-around good guy Cory Cavin has won an Emmy! That's right, a real life Emmy. Yes, he writes a blog. But unlike this blog with updates every 5 months and pictures of bunnies, he writes a blog that wins Emmies! Do him a favor and check out Jimmy Fallon's internet website blog thing. Professionals have awarded it trophies!

Friday, January 16, 2009

THIS POST IS SERVING AS SOME SORT OF JINX ELIMINATOR





wingsuit base jumping from Ali on Vimeo.


The Vandy basketball team is falling and falling fast. It is terrifying to watch, and I'm sure it's even more terrifying to be a part of. But, unlike the men in the video imitating flying squirrels on nuclear steroids, it is not exhilarating.

In fact, it sucks.

We have lost 4 in a row and sit at just 1-5 in SEC play.

The only appropriate accompaniment to our conference season so far is the sad trombone.

Note: I found that sad trombone link while reading this scintillating Puppy Bowl V preview (official Puppy Bowl site here). The Puppy Bowl, unlike any Vandy game these days, is a guaranteed victory for all who tune in. It's cute, it's wholesome, it's silly, it's fun. I cannot recommend it highly enough. If you really care about the Super Bowl, at least record the Puppy Bowl--I guarantee it will hold up better over future rewatchings.

Anyway, we play Auburn tomorrow, and we really need this win on the road to put an end to the avalanche of negamentum we've got going right now.

We're just young. And the youngies need experience and education. And unfortunately, this education won't suffice:




It has to be a little more exclusively basketball related. Hopefully that's happening, and we'll see some wins as a payoff after all the schooling we've been receiving.

Goodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjujugoodjuju..........................................

Dynamite.

ps - sorry for the length of the videos, but I really really like them. And really, you need a distraction from focusing too much on the basketball team.

Monday, January 12, 2009

DO THEY MAKE A PATCH OR A NICOTINE GUM FOR FOOTBALL ADDICTION?

Suffering from football withdrawal? I completely understand. I don't have a lot of nourishment for you, just a couple of scraps. The good news: a professional writer has included us in his very pre-preseason 2009 top 25! Also, national signing day is in a few weeks, so we'll soon know more about the next generation of Commodores who will have the privilege of continuing the GAVF.
What to do now, you ask? Good question. It's time to start focusing your energy on basketball. Today we'll sneak a peak at the men's team.
Last year's team was really good, but with a first round loss to Siena in the NCAA Tournament, things didn't quite turn out the way we had planned:

song chart memes

When you think of recent Vandy basketball, you think of superstars (Derek Byars, Shan Foster), white shooters (would exceed character limits of Blogger.com to name them all), and complementary role players (Alex Gordon, Ross Neltner, Jermaine Beal).
With this template in mind, this year's squad might be a little off-putting to you:



But just because the Chuck E Cheese band never jammed like that at your birthday party doesn't mean they don't have that in their repertoire. With that in mind, I'd like to introduce you to the cognitive dissonance-inducing 2008-09 Commodore basketball team:



We have athletes! They might not be this athletic:



But we do have legitimate athletes!

We are a freshman-heavy team without an all-world stud to rely on. AJ Ogilvy, when he gets and remains healthy (knock furiously on wood), will be strong in the middle (that's a Vandy basketball characteristic we're still getting used to, as well). Jermaine Beal is a fairly steady player who, while he hasn't 'made the leap', has stepped up this year. And don't forget the X-factor (and official Listserv man-crush) Jamie Graham. He's done with football for the year and ready to be the official sparkplug of the basketball team.

And now, without further ado, the freshmen:
-Jefferey Taylor (all-around superstar of the future)
-Brad Tinsley (keeping the white shooter pipeline alive)
-Lance Goulbourne (of video dunking fame)
-Festus Ezeli (whose name strikes fear into opponents)
-Steve Tchiengang (making a strong push for inclusion on the 'coolest name' list)

I can't give you much content on these guys or on the team as a whole. I've actually seen less than one game's worth of action this year, and that was on a grainy internet feed to a laptop being shared by three people. And that's really the biggest weakness of this basketball preview. I'm dumb. Or at least ignorant. So, don't call me the expert. I really don't know much about the team. They have not been very available in my area. They have played 16 games, but conference play is just beginning.

A reasonable preview would be optimistic about the upside of a team dominated by freshmen and sophomores, but cautious about how much they will develop this year. Luckily for the Listserv, I'm not cautious at all.

I'll go ahead and predict that we'll jell late in the season, make a big run in the conference tournament, and earn a spot in the Big Dance where we will continue to turn heads with our new-look athleticism. So get excited! (Just don't ask for a justification for that prediction.)
To sum up in classic Listserv fashion, we can all get excited about the delicious destiny of this basketball team. We rebounded from an opening loss in SEC play to beat Georgia. We're back on a winning streak!

ps - In case you want some real information, you can follow our SEC progress here.

And here is a preview of spring sports. But don't worry, I'll have plenty to add about Women's Bowling soon enough. It's the spring semester, and Vandy sports are in full bloom!

Dynamite

Saturday, December 13, 2008

IT'S BEEN A WEEK SINCE THE BOWL VICTORY, AND I'M STILL NOT CERTAIN THAT I CAN HOLD MY HANDS STEADY ENOUGH TO TYPE THIS

An Accurate Recounting of My Morning, 1/7/09:
  • 7:00 - Wake up 15 minutes before alarm goes off, not because I'm well rested, but rather my body is in crazy survival mode and anticipates the alarm and won't let me get a full night's sleep.
  • 7:15 - Remember that I bought the reduced fat peanut butter in some ill-fated and short-lived epiphany of the I-should-stop-being-so-smushy-all-over-my-body variety, and so have to force down some less than delectable peanut butter toast. [Note: Eating healthy is good. Low fat peanut butter, though, is an abomination unto the Lord. Reduce your fat/calories elsewhere, if you want your taste buds to live.]
  • 7:45 - Check bus tracker--one bus arriving in 2 minutes, one in 5 minutes. Cool! I'm getting to work early today!
  • 7:46 - Oh crap! I forgot to apply the rhinoceros-strength antifungal cream prescribed by the foot doctor to my hideously deformed toe.
  • 7:47 - Unshod, slather, furiously wash toxins off hands, reshod.
  • 7:48 - Check bus tracker--one bus arriving in 2 minutes, one in 9 minutes. Maybe I can make it!
  • 7:49 - Grab lunch, throw on coat-gloves-earmuffs, leap down stairs.
  • 7:50 - See bus at stop around the corner. Increase run to sprint. Round the corner, slip on the snow/ice, fly several feet into air, land on hip/back. Despite obvious slapstick prowess, fail to get hired for travelling Vaudeville show.
  • 7:50 - Bus remains at stop for 15 seconds so that all passengers can watch my acrobatics. After I come to my senses and start to get up, bus departs stop.
  • 7:51 - Man sitting in his car 4 feet away laughs uncontrollably, shaking so much he possibly damages his suspension.
  • 7:51 - Full of shame, I take my time brushing snow off myself.
  • 7:51 - 20 seconds after the first bus, another drives up [The '9 minutes away bus!!!']. Since everyone just got on the last one and I am still 30 feet from the bus stop, the bus does not even stop.
  • 7:51 - Sigh. Loudly.
  • 7:52 - Decide just to walk to work.
  • 7:53 - Walk into the street to avoid large ice patch under an overpass.
  • 7:54 - Realize that my lunch bag feels lighter.
  • 7:55 - Turn around and see banana, carrots, string cheese lying on street.
  • 7:55 - Fight back tears.
  • 8:00 - Miss scarf as snot freezes to mustache.
  • 8:15 - Remember that Vandy won 2008 Music City Bowl.
  • 8:20 - Arrive at work, huge smile on face.

To illustrate, here's a photo of me at work today:

I'm still a dumb jackass, but I'm a happy dumb jackass.

We did it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bowl appearance (first since 1982). Winning record (first since 1982). Bowl victory (first since 1955).

This is the last time I plan on typing out the "Golden Age of Vandy Football." Now that we have arrived, GAVF will suffice, and everyone will know what we mean.

I feel like the details of the game aren't even important. In case you're curious, we won the same way we've been winning. Mediocre offense, strong defense, and big plays, especially on special teams and defense.

One detail from the game that is important, however: Larry Smith. The redshirt freshman quarterback started. And though he shared time with Chris Nickson, he was a revelation. He can throw the football!!!!! I'd forgotten what it's like to have a quarterback who can throw the ball.

Add on a good recruiting class next month, and we could be talking dynasty. Well, maybe not dynasty. But how about consecutive winning seasons? In the GAVF, all things are possible.

You need to be happy about this. You need to be proud of Vandy. It's important, and awesome, and fun, and gratifying, and deserved, and light and fluffy and delicious and all other sorts of adjectives that "regular" people might not be able to understand in reference to a football team's achievement. But it is all those things and more.

We can now expect good things to happen. Let's take basketball. In men's, the SEC is down this year, and we have a buttload of freshmen. Yet, we're 11-3, have won 6 in a row, and we play Kentucky on Saturday. Because of the football team's success, I'm certain we'll win that game and all games thereafter. In women's basketball, we're 11-4, and we've lost 2 in a row. But you know what? I haven't lost confidence. Thanks to the Music City Bowl, I know that we'll rebound, and I believe we'll win the rest of our games. By an average margin of 30-40 points.

That's confidence, friends. And I have it in spades now. With confidence, I'm:

  • Exercising more
  • Eating more healthily (unfortunately, that currently includes the peanut butter)
  • Showering every day (well, almost)
  • Being approached by more women on the street (note: This is not true. However, it is true that less women run screaming from me in public. As Jack Palance taught me: Confidence is very non-anti-sexy.)

Thanks, Commodores! And I hope that you, Listserv, are feeling the effects of this momentous Vandy win. I've been infected, and I couldn't be happier with the elephantitis of the confidence that I've contracted. I wouldn't have it any other way. The world is my oyster, and I'm in a shucking mood.

Now, I'm living out the dictum of prominent 1980's pragmatist philosopher/one hit wonder Matthew Wilder: Ain't nothing gonna break my stride. Nobody's gonna slow me down. Oh no. I've got to keep on moving.

That goes for me, that goes for Vandy, and I hope it goes for you, too.

Dynamite.

ps: If you need a visual aid of how happy you should be right now, you should be this happy:

No, there's nothing happier than a dog hugging a baby. It's just not possible.


OK, it might be possible.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

IT'S OFFICIAL. IT'S HAPPENING. AND AS THE GOOD LORD SAID RIGHT AT THE OUTSET OF THE UNIVERSE'S SPRING PRACTICE, IT'S GOOD

I can't believe it.

I take that back. I can believe.

But if I had to be honest, there's always been a part of me that wasn't all that confident that I'd be believing it right now, at this moment.

To be totally honest, though, there's always been a bigger part of me that really believed that this year [read: whatever year it happens to be at the moment] would be the year.

OK, maybe that part isn't always the "bigger" part. But it is, without a doubt, the feistier part. And that scrappiness means something. At the very least, it meshes spiritually with what this year's team is.

We gained bowl eligibility without a quarterback who could consistently throw the ball down the field with accuracy. With a team that is, overall, smaller and slower than all the other teams in the conference. With a bunch of guys who, on the whole, spend more time student-ing than their student-athlete counterparts at other SEC schools. To sum up, with a bunch of badasses.

I am very proud of this Commodore team. They did not luck their way to a bowl, and they did not get in on some fluke. They earned it. And they are awesome.

I held on to this hyperlink all year, fearing that at some point the season would get so bad (and I would get so depressed) that it would be the only content I could muster. I also saved this photo for similar, worth-a-thousand-words reasons:
The part of me with an overpowering need for an answer to an infinite heartcry of "WHY????????????????????????" saved these links. Mercifully, the feistier part won out.

And so now, the only "Why"s that are operative are "Why don't we go out there and nab some three star recruits before National Signing Day in February?" Or "Why don't we go out there and crush some sorry ACC team that, even in this hilarious age of three win seasons and Charlie Weiss, wants to be Notre Dame." Or "Why don't we keep this momentum going and advance in the Big Dance come April (both men's and women's basketball, that is)?" These are all great why's.

To come: a preview of the bowl game. We are playing in the Music City Bowl in beautiful Nashville, TN. I beseech you to buy tickets now and contribute to home field advantage. The game is December 31, and if you can think of a better way to ring in a new year, you're a smarter (wo)man than I.

Also to come: a preview of the basketball seasons that have already begun for both men and women. Late? Maybe. Excusable? Dude, we're in a freaking bowl game!!!!!!!! I've been streaking around Chicago for two weeks! It's very cold and icy, but I have managed to stay naked and avoid police for a fortnight. Cut me some slack!

OK, Commodores. History has been made. The future is here. Cherish the GAVF. Don't you dare take it for granted. Though I fully believe that it will be nowhere near 26 years before this happens again (that would be more like a Golden Fortnight of Vandy Football), this is a monumental moment in Vandy's, and thus your personal, history. Good things are happening everywhere. Laugh too loudly at something that's only marginally funny [including this blog post]. If you're somewhere as cold as Chicago, break off a couple of icicles and have an ice-sword fight with a stranger. I don't know. Find some silly, in-the-moment way to cherish what's happening, to abide in the now. If you can't be here in this particular now, you really need to rethink the ratio of nostalgia/worrying about the future/some combination of both in which you are mired. I'm choosing to not feel guilty about ignoring the Listserv for so long, and I normally love to beat myself up over stuff like that. Try this 'enjoying life' thing, it's pretty cool.

And thank you, Commodores. You have given us all reason to smile.

Dynamite.