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Chris The Dealer's blog: "CHILDREN"

created on 10/06/2006  |  http://fubar.com/children/b10935

November 5, 2010
SIERRA LEAGUE YOUTH FOOTBALL
semi-final playoff game
Fernley v. Lassen

Number one ranked Fernley Vaqueros took the field against the fourth ranked Lassen Grizzlies.  Do or die, the winner goes to the championship game, the loser goes home. 

I sat in the announcer booth and called the game - I was a last minute substitution.  Trying hard not to be partisan, avoiding the urge to argue with the refs over the public address system, keeping it clean - I had never done this before.

End of the first half, no score.  This was not going to be an easy win.  As Coach Johnny says, "You think you've been working hard, but there's always another team that's working harder."

Midway through the third quarter, Lassen scored on a punt return.  6 to 0 and it was the fist time that Fernley had trailed in a game all season. 

Coach Harris told the team, "When you get knocked down, you have to get back up and fight." 

In the fourth quarter, the Vaqueros rallied.  Two breakaway touchdowns and a victory.

Ethan was very happy.

"Look what they did to my boy." - Don Corleone Godfather

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The angel is curiosity as she ponders the design and function of previously unseen objects. The angel is happiness as she interacts with those around her, bringing joy and laughter to their lives. And at day’s end, the angel is weariness, for she has given of herself much this day, asking little in return. And now the angel sleeps. Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Miss Bonzel was known to be a woman of spiritual power, but the nature and source of that power were matters of some discussion. She lived in a large, unfurnished house that had been bequeathed to her by a man who had the misfortune to be eaten by an alligator shortly after finalizing his will. His relatives took the furniture upon notice of his demise. On this particular day, Miss Bonzel answered a knock at her door. A fair-haired boy of seven years stood before her. "Who are you?" she demanded. "I'm Andre Jolevett," he replied. "Why you comin to see me?" "My mama's sick." "Your mama send you here?" "No." "The doctor been to see your mama?" Miss Bonzel inquired. "Yeah, but Doctor Pardieu didn't do nothin but tell her to get some rest. She been in bed for more than a week and she aint no better. I think maybe someone put a mojo on her." Miss Bonzel studied the boy suspiciously. "Did you bring me some money?" she asked. "I don't have no money, but I'll bring you some when I get it." "Oh child, I work too hard to be providin no-charge service. I could starve to death watin for you to pay me." Andre thought for a moment and then offered, "I could bring you a chicken. We got lots of chickens." Miss Bonzels eyes looked up to the sky and then back down at the boy. "You bring me a big fat layin hen." Andre nodded in agreement. "And a bag of feed, I dont want my chicken to go hungry." He continued to nod. "And child, you know somethin bad gonna happen if you dont bring me a chicken." Andre paused to consider the gravity of the threat and then spoke in whispered tones, "Okay." "Well, come on in," she invited. Miss Bonzel opened her cupboard revealing a number of jars and bowls full of powder. She carefully took little pinches from selected containers and dropped the powders into the palm of her open hand as Andre watched from the center of the room. She turned and walked toward the boy. "Who put a mojo on your mama?" she asked. "I don't know," he answered. "Well, whoever did is gonna be real sorry." And with that, she threw the powder into the air. Black smoke rose from the floor and whirled about with such fury that Andre was lifted up to the ceiling and thrown out the door. He landed on his shoulder, rolled up onto his feet, and ran all the way home without ever looking back. Mama had dinner waiting at the table. She ate well that evening. Doctor Pardieu became quite ill and was committed to an institution. Some folks said that he just worked himself to a sickness. Andre took a chicken and a bag of feed to the house of Miss Bonzel and tethered the chicken to her hitching post as she watched from the window. Mama never missed the chicken.
Miss Hoffman was no taller than the average height of her third grade students. Approaching or possibly having exceeded retirement age, she spoke in measured tones and walked slowly, yet purposefully, with perfect posture. She was, however, given to occasional outbursts of temper culminating in her grabbing a student by his collar as he sat at his desk, and shaking him vigorously – four times back and forth, four times from side to side and then twice up and down. The girls were exempt. While punishment in Miss Hoffman’s class seemed to be handed out equitably in proportion to need, certain students received a rather large portion. Dennis Lazano, who had developed the art of complaining to heights previously unknown in Ohio grammar schools, was one such student. Dennis sat in the row of seats nearest the cloakroom, and on this day he seemed to be having a rather animated problem with Billy Tucker who sat at the desk immediately behind him. Billy was the product of low class upbringing and a higher than average family income. He took great pleasure in pointing out the deficiencies of his classmates and proclaiming his own superiority. Billy had spent the morning making mention of Dennis’ low score on a spelling test, noting the hole in Dennis’ shirt and commenting on the shape of Dennis’ head, which gave rise to the question of whether his parents had ever put his head in a clamp as punishment. Dennis was quite capable of defense and counter attack on this battlefield except that the logistics of his position required that he turn around in his seat to respond. Miss Hoffman perceived Dennis’ behavior to be so disruptive that within a period of thirty minutes, she was twice compelled to see if she could give him a whiplash. On the second occasion, he was directed to take the empty desk directly behind mine in hopes that the change of environment would make a difference. Another fifteen minutes or so elapsed and Miss Hoffman charged down the aisle in my direction. I sank low in my seat as she approached. Much to my relief, Dennis apparently required another shaking (three times before lunch was a new class record). Dennis’ fourth shaking ended when Miss Hoffman bounced him out of his seat, up the aisle and to the front of the room. She positioned him so that he faced the class in order that we could all have a good view of the humiliation to which he was about to be subjected. “Why can’t you behave?” she asked. Dennis looked at the floor with a furrowed brow and said nothing. Miss Hoffman spoke again, “What is the matter with you?” Again Dennis refused to speak. “I have asked you a question, and I expect an answer.” Dennis shot a side-glance at her and said, “Ah, go to hell.” “What did you say?” She heard what he said. I was sitting in the back of the classroom and I heard it. Dennis stood his ground and remained silent. “You go outside and stand in the hall,” she finally ordered, realizing that he had no intention of repeating himself. Dennis complied. Miss Hoffman addressed the class with her standard speech proclaiming that we were young adults and should behave accordingly. Eventually she joined Dennis in the hall and a short while later they both returned to class. Dennis required no further discipline for the rest of the day. On the way home from school that afternoon, Dennis picked up a dog pile and hit Billy Tucker in the head with it.
I was four years old and living in Raleigh, North Carolina – just down the street from Darrow Road. Butch Renfro lived upstairs. He was my age. Butch always had snot running from his nose. That irritated me but it didn’t seem to bother him. Bobby Humphries, another four year old in the neighborhood, lived across the street. He and I would occasionally play together. One day we went into the crawl space under the apartments where I lived. There were a lot of spiders down there. Bobby ran out and locked the door behind him. I was trapped. I yelled for help until my mother heard me and let me out. I had been there in the dark for a long time but I didn’t cry. Two weeks later, I hit Bobby over the head with a steel pipe. His mother was furious and she told my mother what I had done. My mother never mentioned it to me. She didn’t like Bobby or his mother. Jimmy Neal lived down the street. He was seven years old and I learned a lot from him. Jimmy and I caught black widow spiders and put them into jars. Sometimes we’d go down to Beaver Dam and catch crawdads or go fishing. When neighbors would leave town, Jimmy would push me through an open window of their house and I’d unlock the back door for him. If we found any money there, we’d walk to the store on the other side of the woods and buy Cracker Jacks and Eskimo Pies. Jimmy handled the finances but I think he always gave me a fair shake. The big boys on the block were Billy Francisco, Richard Evans, Jack Wall and L.A. Heubler. Jack was always nice to me. L.A. was a fat slob – eleven years old and over two hundred pounds. His mother said that L.A. ate only the very choicest cuts of beef. Billy Francisco and Jimmy Neal got into a fight one day. Billy was bigger and older. He twisted Jimmy’s arm and made him cry. The following Sunday, while the Franciscos were attending church, Jimmy threw white paint on their brick house while I stood lookout. A lot of questions were asked, but Jimmy and I denied any knowledge of the incident. Richard Evans got a new bicycle. Well, not actually a new one, it was pretty much a piece of junk with no fenders, no chain guard and questionable tires. But he was the first kid in the neighborhood with his own mode of transportation. The other big boys admired the bike and Richard would let them ride it up to Darrow Road and back, except for L.A. Richard said that L.A. was too big for the bike, and this lead to some discussion and ridicule of Richard. “He’s not going to hurt your bike.” “Don’t worry about it.” Richard finally gave in. L.A mounted the bicycle and started up the street on it. The rear tire blew first, then the front. Naturally there were a lot of apologies forthcoming, but Richard was pretty mad about the whole affair. My family and I moved back to Columbus, Ohio shortly after I turned five. I spent a lot of time with my cousins there - Eddie, Rita, Steve and Sherry. We all got along pretty well.
Ethan and I visited the local shopping mall this morning. Thursday morning is a good time for shopping. Many people have to work on Thursday morning so the mall is not very busy. We practiced riding the escalator and seemed to do pretty well, however we need a little more work on the getting on/getting off part. Sometimes we fail to pay close attention and stumble a bit. The puppies in the pet store were especially cute. Some were sleeping and some were in a playful mood. We wanted to take one home, but thought better of it because we weren’t sure that our cats would approve. We saw many fine toys at the Disney Store and examined them carefully. But they all seemed to be a bit overpriced. After some discussion we decided to wait and see if any of them go on sale after Easter. Ethan found a balloon behind the counter at one of the specialty clothing stores and seeing no price tag on it, tucked it under his arm and headed for the door. The cashier said that he could keep it and I told her how much we appreciated that. After a couple of hours we were all tuckered out, so we came home and took a nap. We had a lot of fun today.
Ethan decided that I should wake up early this morning. He came into the bedroom and pushed me as I lay on the bed. I opened my eyes and he was smiling at me. “You want to play?” I asked. “Yeah,” he said. “Well, get up here with me.” Ethan climbed up onto the bed and when he stood up, I whacked him in the head with a pillow and knocked him down. He grabbed a pillow and tried to suffocate me, but I managed to escape from under it. I got him into a headlock and knuckled his head, but then he punched me in the kidney and I had to let go. Ethan put a chokehold on me from behind. I yelled, “Hey, that’s no fair!” But he wouldn’t let go and I had to tap out. We were both pretty tired after all that, so we went downstairs and ate some pancakes.
Ethan and I went to the track last night to watch the horses run. We decided to sit in the general admission area instead of paying for seats in the clubhouse so that we would have plenty of money for snacks as the evening progressed. There was a lot of riff-raff on the lower levels, so we walked up stairs to the section where the nice people sit and found some good seats close to the finish line. Ethan was rather amused at the way the seat bottoms could be flipped up when not in use. The first race was a 300-yard maiden claimer. Noble Affair looked like the best of the bunch, but Classic Move had only lost by half a length in its only race. After some discussion, we decided to put a win bet on Noble Affair and play an exacta to Classic Move. We hit with the win ticket but the other horse failed to fire. That was okay, because we turned ninety cents profit on the race. Ethan and I went over to the paddock to take a close look at the horses for the next race. We agreed that they were beautiful animals and Ethan seemed to be respectfully impressed with their size. Then jockeys came through the tunnel and walked past us. All of them were a little bigger than Ethan. He liked the colorful silks and high boots. We decided to watch the second race from the trackside rail and found a place close to the finish line. I lifted Ethan high in the air so that he could have a good view as the horses ran by. It was an exciting race, and Ethan noted that the jockeys were hitting the horses with whips. He told me that the horses were being hurt. I explained to him that if they did what they were told, it would not be necessary to spank them. I think that he understood the concept. The third race was a little expensive when a seven-to-one class dropper took it wire-to-wire and destroyed my tickets. "Time for a snack," I said. Ethan agreed. We bought some popcorn, nachos and drinks then went back to our seats to study the next race. Ethan said that the popcorn was very good. At the beginning of the fourth race, one of the horses broke through the gate and fell to the ground. It had to be scratched. Ethan said that the horse got hurt. "Yes," I replied, "he got hurt because he has bad gate manners." That incident was a topic of discussion for the rest of the evening - horse got hurt at the gate. The fifth, sixth and seventh races did not go according to plan and I was down about twenty bucks, but the eighth race had a lot of potential and I thought that it might be a good time to tap into some of that pari-mutuel cash flow. IBA Perry was going to win and everybody knew it - six to five odds. But at eleven to one, Lawful was being overlooked by the crowd. A Mere Flame was receiving some action at three to one. I keyed the exacta and trifecta on IBA Perry, and then purchased a five-dollar win ticket on the horse as well. Yes, by God! I nailed it! Cashed for sixty bucks and ended up with forty dollars profit for the evening - not including admission, program and snacks. Ethan and I decided to leave before the last two races. Leaving the track after the last race is a little dangerous. Some of the people have lost all their money, they're drunk and they're mad and they don't care if they hit your car or run over you on the way out. On the way home we talked a little more about that horse that got hurt at the gate and we decided that we should do this more often. We both had a lot of fun.
Ethan ran through the house with his Luke Skywalker light saber in hand as I relaxed on the sofa in the living room. He stopped at the bottom of the stairs, looked up, pointed at the second floor and said, “Bear.” “There’s a bear up there?” I asked, wanting to be sure that I understood. “Yeah,” he replied. He picked up his little broom from the floor and brought it to me. “C’mon, Pa,” he said. We walked to the bottom of the stairs and stood motionless, waiting to see if the bear was moving about. Hearing nothing, I said, “Let’s find the bear.” And we scampered up the steps on all fours. At the top landing we stopped again. We listened and looked around – we were very quiet so as not to give away our position. I motioned toward the guest bedroom and we proceeded with caution. And there it was, lying on the bed, disguised as a big pillow. “Let’s get him,” I yelled. I ran forward and hit the bear with the broom. Ethan whacked it with his light saber. Working as a team, we gave the bear a proper thrashing.
Ethan and I went to have the oil changed in my car today. He’s only two years old and this was a new experience for him. We dropped the car off at EZ Lube and walked to the grocery store across the parking lot. On the way, we found a shopping cart and Ethan decided to sit in it while I pushed. I pushed it real fast and that made him laugh. When we got inside the store, Ethan wanted to walk. So I lifted him out of the cart and let him lead me on an adventure. First we went to the health and beauty aids department where Ethan found a battery-powered toothbrush in the shape of a robot. He inspected it carefully and talked about the many features. After a while, he put it down and continued his journey. Then we found toothpaste tubes with what looked like pictures of Barbie on the label. I explained to him that these were meant for girls and not for little boys. He still found them interesting, but decided that he didn’t really want one. Then we stumbled upon a wire cage at the end of an isle that was filled with big balls. Ethan managed to pull one out from an opening in the wire and showed it to me. I said, “No, you can’t have that!” and stamped my foot. Ethan giggled and ran down the isle with it. I chased after him and we ran all through the store. Finally, he got tired so I picked him up and told him that we’d have to pay for the ball if he wanted to take it home. I’m not sure he quite understood the concept of “purchase”, but he waited patiently in the checkout line with me as I paid for the ball and a three-dollar bottle of Chardonnay. We walked back across the parking lot to EZ Lube, picked up the car and went home. The ball was a lot of fun, but the wine was only fair.
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