Early in the preseason, Joe Restic told me this year's football team was a group with real spirit--a togetherness and pride that would be good for at, least a few extra points.
At the time, with an eye toward the glaring weaknesses in the Crimson lineup, I regarded Restic's comment as the optimism of a coach desperate for a strength to highlight. After all, spirit? The glee club has spirit; your fourth-grade gym teacher had spirit; an Irish Setter puppy has spirit. But a football team has bulk, speed, agility, experience.
I doubted Joe's enthusiasm.
Well, no more. This team has confidence, and--yes--spirit. They are a very convincing group.
I was eating a quiet dinner the other night, counting the peas and carrots in my turkey pot pie, when I noticed that a very burly, almost-rabid lineman was inserting a custard-filled eclair into my right ear.
The move was a very effective attention-getter. I immediately ignored the fowl goulash before me and surveyed three very mean looking Lou Ferrigno clones who were glaring at me from above.
One of them was particularly disturbing, almost ready to foam at the mouth and looking something like a Dartmouth frat brat after a tough Friday night with the boys.
"Aaaaarrrrrghhh (snort, garumph)," he said, articulately.
"Yes, well, I agree that it is unfortunate they tightened the requirements in Bio 106," I replied.
At that, he moved the eclair somwhere into my inner ear. Fearing the Harvard-made custard would soon cut off the air supply to my brain and permanently block my aural passageway, I decided I had better oblige my dinner guests.
"So, gentlemen, what can I do for you? Perhaps you'd like a cup of coffee? Maybe a shoeshine?" I queried.
The most sedate of the trio, while attempting to get his friend to withdraw the pastry from my person, said, "So. When are you gonna stop writing that you're surprised about the team doing well (including frequent colorful interjections)?
"Yeah, yeah! No surprise. Good for real. Yeah, yeah!" added the bakery-crazed eclair wielder.
The third member of this merry triumverate stood by silently, cracking each joint in his body--one by one--with deafening precision. He was chewing a wad of Bazooka and crushed Coke bottles. I was dying to ask him if he would blow a bubble, but I surpressed the urge in the name of mental health--my own.
"Now look guys," I began, hoping not to provoke my end as a giant custard tube. "You were awesome against Columbia. I admit it. But really, the Lions looked like a bunch of Kindergarteners out for recess-time kickball. You still have to prove yourselves against a real test."