Rampage - Rams Mascot

Rampage – Rams Mascot

I got my flu vaccine today. Anne got hers today too. I got mine at work around lunchtime, while she got hers at the grocery store after school. Both of us were fully covered under our insurance, but since I got my vaccine while at work, I got paid to get mine. I’m feeling some symptoms from mine. I have a bit of fever (99.2 ºF), general aches, chills and my arm is sore, but it’s not the arm that got the shot. It is the other one. I can’t remember ever getting any side effects before. I interpret all this as yet another sign that I must be getting old.

Not in My House

Rams Versus Seahawks

Rams Versus Seahawks

Not in my house
You might catch me on the road
But not in my house
It won’t happen, oh no
Oh no, oh no, oh no, oh no

– Nelly

The main reason for Rey’s coming to Saint Louis, other than to see us was to see today’s football game. The Rams hosted the Seahawks and Rey is from Seattle. Free football tickets were also the reason that David came to Saint Louis. Dave had been in Chicago on Saturday, watching the US Women’s Soccer team beat up on the lowly Guatemalans. I mean they were short; every US player had a full head of height over the visitors. I think that the final score was 5-0, but the worst of it was that the Guatemalan team never even got a shot on goal. I think that many of the pundit class were expecting a similar route in today’s game. I certainly was. Here you had last year’s Super bowl winning Seahawks versus the lowly Rams, with a record this year of only 1-4 going into this game, but Saint Louis pulled a fast one.

Rey drove us downtown this morning, so that he could get a jump on his long drive back to Tennessee tonight. We had brunch at Rooster, the same place that Anne treated me at for Father’s Day earlier this year. We figured if we got downtown early enough, we would beat the football rush there. What we didn’t figure on was the additional hubbub from this morning’s Rock ‘n’ Roll marathon. Downtown Saint Louis was hopping this Sunday morning. Rooster is a crepes place and is part of the Bailey family of restaurants, which is sort of a local ‘chain’ except that almost every restaurant is different.

The Rams were passing out Robert Quinn (#94) bobble-head dolls at the gate. The game started surprisingly well for Saint Louis, who was up 21-6 at the half. Seattle kept coming back and the final score was very close, 28-26. The Rams pulled a couple of trick plays, both of which worked well. A fake punt gave Saint Louis the first down that it needed to run out the clock and put the game away. Even more unusual though was the first half’s fake punt return. Seattle kicked the punt and the Rams punt returner and his blockers moved to the left-hand side of the field to catch it. Almost of the Seahawks moved to that side too, to block the return. The only problem was that the ball had been kicked to the right-hand side of the field. A Rams receiver dropped back from the line to catch the punt and then ran it back for the touchdown. The only Seahawks player that wasn’t fooled was the kicker, because he was watching to see where the ball was going. It was a good game. Not quite a Cardinal’s pennant winning game six, but a suitable substitute under the circumstances.


Sports Fans

Sports Fans

Skip: You guys. You lollygag the ball around the infield. You lollygag your way down to first. You lollygag in and out of the dugout. You know what that makes you? Larry!
Larry: Lollygaggers!
Skip: Lollygaggers.

This last weekend, while Anne and I were lollygagging across Missouri, as part of this year’s MS-150, the hometown teams managed to pull themselves out of their relative torpors and win a few games. The Rams managed to win their regular season opener, beating the (former Saint Louis) Cardinals. The Saint Louis Cardinals managed to sweep the Pirates, relegating them to second place in the NL Central. According to the paper, Cardinal management had had a heart-to-heart with the players before this series, about the team not playing up to its potential. It seems to have worked out well, based upon this weekend’s performance. Even the Rams played with less lollygagging then they exhibited during this year’s preseason, hence the opening Bull Durham quote.

We crossed paths on Sunday night with Dave and two of his friends. Dan on the left went to Rochester with Dave. In the middle is James, a friend of Dan. This trio blew into town to see the home teams play. All three started out at the Cardinal’s game. Dan and Dave stayed through the fourth inning and then trucked across downtown to the dome, to see the Rams play. James stayed to see the whole game, because he is on some sort of baseball tour. The Cards were ahead in the fourth and only piled on more runs in later innings, crushing Pittsburgh in a weekend’s work. The Rams struggled. Anne watched the game on TV and she kept me up with the score. Somehow they managed to end up on top by the end of the game. It was a good weekend for Saint Louis sports.

Hat Tales

Dave Looking Askance at his Rams Cap

Dave Looking Askance at his Rams Cap

I biked on Saturday, for the record, my mileage was well short of 4000 miles. It was very windy, which always makes for harder cycling. I kept being passed by the younger, more spritely riders. This made me feel old and tired. Since Anne is not yet regularly riding and I am currently riding alone, I listen to podcasts to pass the time. This normally works well, except that day, when I turned into the wind; I could hardly hear the shows, over the baffled wind noise in my earbuds.

This is Super Bowl Sunday, one of those unofficial, official holidays. I mean, what else are you going to do on a Sunday in February except watch football on TV? I’m going to root for the Niners, like most of the nation. I haven’t queried Anne on her allegiance yet, but I don’t think that she has any real dog in this fight. I don’t either, but I don’t want to stir up my California Bros. I do have a few asides to add.

My first aside is of a literary nature. The Baltimore Ravens are named for the poem by Edgar Allen Poe, “The Raven”. I did not know this until this week. Poe, America’s first commercially successful author came from Baltimore.

I guess that the biggest human interest story of this game is the duel between two brothers. The two team’s head coaches are brothers. Whether you call this game a Harbaugh Bowl or simply a Harbrawl, this nationally televised family spat makes for great press. My aside on the John and Jim Harbaugh controversy is that they both attended my high school. I was long since gone, but John, the one year older Ravens coach, graduated from Ann Arbor Pioneer High School. Jim, the San Francisco Forty-Niners coach, the younger brother returned to Ann Arbor as a quarterback for the University of Michigan. They are both roughly Jane’s age, but since they went to Pioneer and she went to Huron, it is unlikely that she met either of them.

About the hats, a while back, Anne knitted Dave a cap [loosely] based upon the design of the Saint Louis Rams football team’s helmets. Both Dave and Anne’s pictured facial expressions, are more attributable to the iPhone self-portrait process than any criticism on the knitted cap. Although, Dave did complain the cap was too big for his head. He needs more college education, if you ask me.

Speaking of the Rams, they were victorious in their arbitration decision this week. This makes them more successful off the field than they were on it this season. The Rams and Saint Louis entered into arbitration over their stadium dispute. Saint Louis offered modest improvements to the existing stadium, while the Rams are seeking a more comprehensive makeover and have threatened to leave town in 2015, when their lease is up. There was a nasty spat last year, when the Rams proposed a trial separation, by playing a number of their home games in Europe. With Rams home games already looking like an endangered species, Saint Louis offered some serious pushback to this idea.

My final aside is also about the Rams and comes courtesy of the NRA. On their website they have their long enemies list. This list enumerates organizations and individuals that have had the temerity to support gun control legislation. Most of the individuals are Hollywood actors and most of the organizations are healthcare related. A notable exception to the later generalization are the Saint Louis Rams. Go Rams!

Anne Documenting Her Work

Anne Documenting Her Work