They’re ruining football, Chuck-n-Nancy, and a hurricane is trying to kill me. 9/6/17

I’m not going to lie to you, CO nation: there’s a lot to be depressed about in the news.

Sure, there’s some fun stuff too.  Hillary Clinton’s book is out, and it is exactly the dog’s breakfast of schadenfreude and projection and delusion and leftist intramural fight-picking that we had all hoped it would be.  I mean, once we found out that she was writing a book, and then that a publisher was actually going to publish it.   And then after we checked that the source for those facts was not an Onion story, or a bit of snarky leg-pulling by CO or by me.

Anyway, that book is out, and it’s chock-full of laughs on every page.  But in a sane world, we would not turn our thoughts back to last year to beat this (thick-ankled) dead horse.

Unfortunately, we live in this world, where there’s enough depressing stuff going on that we might naturally want to reminisce about how Hillary was beaten by a conspiracy of young socialists following a very old socialist, Macedonian hackers, misogynists, the Bilderberg group, and I think Freemasons.  (Or was it Morgan Freeman?)

Depressing stuff like what, you ask?  I’ll mention three things.

1.Sports is supposed to be a pleasant escape from the mundane frustrations of everyday life, like insensitive bosses and oblivious drivers and financial worries and Ashley Judd.   Humans came up with sports eons ago, but for a long time, games involved nothing but rocks and sticks and the occasional enemy’s detached head.  Slowly, new sports were born.  Sports like “swim across the Red Sea before the Egyptians catch us and make us build more pyramids,” “footrace against the Mongol who is bearing down on you on horseback,” and “duck, duck, plague victim.”

Finally, when humanity was sufficiently advanced to appreciate the greatest of all sports, a loving God bestowed football upon us.  Now some of God’s earlier work was pretty impressive, too.  Creating a universe ex nihilo was a nice opening act.  Turning some guy’s wife into a pillar of salt can be appreciated by anyone who’s ever been married.  And the New Testament is the best sequel ever, and I’m including Godfather II and Breakin’ 2: Electric Bugaloo in there.

But have you ever seen film of Gayle Sayers running with the ball, or Dick Butkus or Gary Fencik disassembling offensive players into their constituent molecular parts , or Walter Payton dancing through several players before lowering his shoulder and plowing through several more?  Or any other, non-Bears players making other good plays, I guess?

Football is an amazing game, is my point.

So naturally a bunch of malcontent lefties are trying to ruin it by injecting their horrible politics into it.  Colin Kapernick probably has half a point, when he argues that his controversial views have made it harder for a team to employ him as a quarterback.  But considering that his views are boilerplate America-hatred and wildly exaggerating the racism in a country that millions of minorities from around the world are desperately trying to get into, you can’t blame team owners from shying away.

Consider the anti-Kapernick: Tim Tebow.  His views — fair play, the American way, and Christianity — were also said to be controversial, even though the vast majority of football fans don’t find them offensive.  But Tebow – when he wasn’t building orphanages, doing CPR to save kittens who had fallen out of trees, and healing the sick who touched the hem of his jersey – had a throwing motion that looked like he was being tasered just before it was time to release the ball.  So he didn’t get to play pro ball for very long.

Similarly, Colin Kapernick can’t read a defense or hit a receiver on a crossing pattern.  So even though he really hates America, he doesn’t get to play professional football.  But he was able to inspire a legion of other imbeciles all over the league, who are now calling attention to themselves by sitting through the national anthem and expounding on how my country sucks.

You people are ruining autumn!

2. Trump is morphing into the mushy center-leftist that many of us feared he was or would become, while the “professional” GOP – who are supposed to know better – apparently don’t know better. The low point came this week, when Trump inexplicably made an indefensible deal on the debt ceiling with – and here I am simultaneously choking on my own bile and throwing up in my mouth, which is every bit as pleasant as it sounds – Nancy Pelosi and Chuck-you Schumer.

The old cliché says, “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.”  Of course, clichés become clichés because there is a lot of truth in them.  99 times out of 100, Joseph Stalin has got to be your enemy, if you are a decent, freedom loving country.   But when Stalin is fighting Hitler, Stalin is the enemy of your enemy, so… here’s a hearty handshake, Uncle Joe.

But if you should ever find yourself thinking that Pelosi and Schumer are your friends, you have to seriously re-assess your situation, and ask yourself how you could possible come to think that some other enemy – especially non-entities like Paul freaking Ryan or Chinless Cartoon Turtle McConnell – could be worse than those two!

Let me give you a hint, in the form of my own subtle revision of the aforementioned cliché:  “Pelosi and Schumer are your enemies, you imbecile!”

I’m still enormously grateful that Trump beat Hillary in November, and I appreciate some of the steps he’s taken (cutting regulations, Gorsuch, reforming taxes if he can get that done).  But the trajectory of his recent moves is not encouraging, to say the least!

3. In a true-life circumstance that puts the two complaints above in their proper, i.e. trivial perspective, hurricane Irma is barreling toward my family’s home.

We live in North Central Florida, but we’ve never experienced a hurricane before, since we’re far enough north that they usually become tropical storms before they reach us.  My only experience with 80 mph winds has been when I’ve ridden a motorcycle 80 miles an hour.  And that wind seemed like it might be unsettling, if you were feeling it when you were just standing in your yard, leaning into it.

We’ve spent the several days preparing.  My world-champion wife has been gathering supplies and stocking and preparing the homestead, while I’ve been out putting up what seems like 10,000 square feet of plywood on our handful of rental houses.  Our store shelves are empty, our gas stations are out, and the only books left on our library shelves were “An Inconvenient Truth” and Hillary’s new book.

So I’m going to be sitting with my family on our bathroom floor, using a flashlight to read the Owner’s Manuals for every tool and appliance I own.

If the current predictions are right, we will start feeling the effects of the storm on Sunday afternoon.  We will likely lose power Sunday evening, and if we’re lucky we’ll all come through safely, with our house intact, and we’ll only be without power for a day or two.

Before that happens, though, I’m posting this column at my dead drop for CO.   I’ll be back online as soon after the storm passes as possible.

In the meantime, if the worst should happen, no one is going to know what my last words were, which is really irritating.

I’m going to try to think of something really stirring.   But if I come up empty, I’m going back to a past classic.

After a tree has fallen through our ceiling, pinning me beneath it, I hope that I am able to gasp to my daughter, “You know who I blame this on?”

And she will respond, “The Democrats!”

I’ll wink at her lovingly.  And then the next face I expect to see will be Christ’s.   And he’ll fist bump me, in silent celebration of my awesome parenting skills.

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