Just Heather

Well, it came as no surprise to hear that Edgerrin James had signed a deal with another team. The surprise—dare I say shock—came when I heard which team. When I first heard he was in talks with the Cardinals I honestly thought it was a joke. When I realized he was actually in Arizona, I figured he just wanted everyone in the NFL to know he was shopping. When I heard he signed a deal with them, my jaw nearly hit the floor.

The Cardinals? Is he freaking kidding me?! They are the absolute epitome of a non-competitor. What, exactly, does he think he will gain there? Does he really expect to put up big numbers on a team that was dead last in rushing this year? He can’t go it alone. Maybe, as my dad said, it’s all a matter of “show me the money,” but I can’t imagine being happy raking in the big bucks on a bad team. Especially when most of your salary will be eaten up in personal travel expenses so you can get out of Arizona. It’s called the Desert Southwest for a reason. I’m thinking the big fish/small pond scenario has some allure to it.

We have no shortage of talent around here, though holding onto them with the current salary cap has proven to be a challenge. I’m starting to think the loss of Larry Tripplett and David Thornton will be more detrimental than losing the Edge. Just when we were really building a defense—showing some actual talent in that area—the team is dismantling. We’ve built these guys into marketable players, but now we can’t afford them. It would appear as if we’re protecting a bit of our salary room to renegotiate with Dwight Freeney, who will be a free agent next off-season.

We’ve struggled with defense for years. To come so far only to have it ripped apart isn’t good for the level of play or team morale. On the other hand, losing Edgerrin changes our game. We don’t just rely on the yards. We rely on his run game to setup the play action Peyton does so well. I’m just not sure anyone else can pull that off quite the same. Dominic Rhodes showed a lot of promise when James was out in 2001 so we shall see. We’ll have to pick someone up in the draft to help him out, seeing as James Mungro is also a free agent this year. Though what caliber player we could draft as low as we’ll be placed remains to be seen.

It all sucks, though not as much as rumors of our special teams’ loss. That one will devastate me. Mike Vanderjagt is hands down the single hottest player in the NFL, possibly in all of professional sports—and he’s Canadian to boot! He is NFL’s most accurate kicker, the Colts’ leading scorer, and an all around great guy. He would be a fantastic loss to not only the team, but our entire community. It may very well split my loyalties.

I’ve always been a hometown fan. Not in a fair-weather fan, they’re-undefeated-don’t-I-own-something-blue kind of way. Rain or shine, I’ll watch week after week—football and basketball. When the chips are down, I’ll still cheer them on, but as the team gets shipped all across the country a la Pacers Y2K I just may have to follow some of my boys. I can only console myself with the knowledge that they weren’t purposefully dismantled like the Eastern Conference champion Pacers. We just don’t have the cap room to keep it together.

You can usually find hubby and I camped out on the couch on Sunday afternoon, watching our beloved Colts. This year, we have 3 Monday games—including one late game the night before our daughter is scheduled to arrive. So with all that football on the brain, it should be no surprise that I noticed the Manning-Harrison tribute in The Longest Yard.

Sure, it could be a coincidence that Adam Sandler sported a number 18 jersey in his role as the quarterback. The fact that his practice jersey was blue and white could have been unintentional. I guess it could be yet another coincidence that his wide receiver sported the number 88, but on a blue and white jersey in the hodgepodge of colors? Somebody’s a Colts fan!

So in honor of my Colts and their Monday Night Football win—making us the only 6-0 team, I might add—I bring you this fun blonde joke. It’s okay; I used to be a blonde!

A guy took his girlfriend (a blonde) to her first football game. They had great seats right behind their team’s bench. After the game, he asked her if she had enjoyed the game.

Oh, I really liked it,” she replied, “especially the tight pants and all the big muscles, but I just couldn’t understand why they were killing each other over 25 cents.”

Dumbfounded, her date asked, “What do you mean?”

“Well, they flipped a coin, one team got it and then for the rest of the game, they all kept screaming: ‘Get the quarterback! Get the quarterback!’ I’m like…Helloooooo? It’s only 25 cents!”

If you are an old, bearded white guy you should never, ever say “my homeys.”

It seems a recent fan poll selected the Indiana Pacers as the best dressed in the NBA. A few years ago, I would have had to vehemently disagree. Those yellow uniforms—which occasionally still get pulled out on what can only be laundry night—were tacky as can be. The blue pinstriped jerseys rock, but it could be I’m partial. That’s the Miller jersey I have.

I need to get a new one before they retire his jersey. The one I have was my first ever—and, quite possibly, my most recent—Mother’s Day present 7 years ago. I’ve worn it to every game I’ve ever been to, and most of the ones I’ve watched from home. It’s starting to look a bit sad.

On another sad note, I’ve been trying to write a Reggie Miller retirement post for weeks, but I just can’t seem to get it right. It’s not that I don’t want him to go. I think he’s making the best decision for himself and the team. It’s just that Reggie created this team. Reggie invented the Pacer fan. Reggie made me an all out sports fan. I don’t know how to say goodbye. Not goodbye. See you soon. I have high hopes he’ll remain a part of the franchise in some way. He’s a Pacer through and through.

One of these days I’ll actually participate in ANBOW, but until then my Monday morning recaps will have to suffice. This one’s a doozy, so grab a cup of coffee and settle in. The weekend started like any other. If you hadn’t checked my calendar, you would never know a Super Family Fun Weekend was about to occur. We had our typical fast, cheap and easy Friday dinner, followed by my weekly sleep day. I get Saturdays; he gets Sundays.

As per our arrangement, Saturday starts with the kids waking me up and me kicking Spencer until he gets out of bed. Then I snuggle in for a few more hours of uninterrupted guilt-free extra sleep. This is the one day of the week I get to wake up, shower, and get ready without a tagalong. In fact, this is generally the one day a week I actually get to shower before naptime. While the sleeping in may not be all it’s cracked up to be, this is bliss!

After lunch, I run my weekly errands. This day was no exception. What made it so great was a serendipitous meeting with someone who works at the newspaper delivery station. I have been going through their old paper stacks for 6 months to get my weekly coupons. Last week, the station manager kicked me out, saying it was for employees only. The lady I met had spoken to me in the past, and even given me her extra Sunday papers. She told me on Sunday that she argued with him for 10 minutes after I left, and that she wanted to help. I typically pick up 15 papers each week. Some for my personal use, some for my sister, and some to get extra freebies for food banks. She is working out getting me way more than I could have ever collected in the newspaper bins.

After my errands, it was back home to prepare for the first phase of Super Family Fun Weekend—SuperCross 2005! This was my 5th SuperCross, and it started quite by accident. The first year my father-in-law was all excited because he was getting tickets for Valentine’s Day. He asked if we’d like to go. Spencer said sure, which made his dad very happy. A few weeks later, his wife calls me to make sure we really wanted to go before she bought tickets. I said if Spencer said we’d go I guess he wants to and double checked the calendar. Spencer’s sisters would babysit, so we were set.

Spencer had no idea what I was talking about when I told him we had tickets. No recollection whatsoever of the conversation. Since his dad was so excited about the opportunity to share this with us, we decided to go anyway. It was so cool! At least I thought so. Spencer? Not so much. He stays home with the girls now and his little sisters come along. There is just something so exciting about the buzz of all those motorcycles flying through the air. I look forward to it every year.

Ricky Carmichael is back from last year’s injury and kicking butt. As expected, he flew right passed the competition, including our Hoosier boy, Mike LaRocco.

And now, for your viewing pleasure, SuperCross 2005 pictures (click to bigify). And picture me right there in the middle!

To balance out the hick, I rounded out the weekend on Sunday with a Symphony Orchestra Concert. My Brownie troop finished up our Sounds of Music Try-It with the Family Fun Concert. The symphony opened with the Star Wars theme. I was still waiting for late Brownies, but rushed Stacia inside to hear it. After giving up on the ones who were now 40 minutes late, I joined the girls. Stacia leans over to me to whisper “They just played Star Wars! It sounded just like it!” We’re raising such geeks.

The orchestra went on to play some classics, like Beethoven and Pachelbel. The kids were invited onto the stage to hear the music from the orchestra’s point of view. I was concerned about the length of the concert (almost 2 hours), but by the time intermission came around the kids didn’t want to leave! Never fear, I came prepared with snacks—which could only be eaten out in the lobby! The second half of the concert was nice, but not near as interactive.

The orchestra had invited 2 local young musicians to play with them. These girls—one high school, one junior high— won an award and scholarship for their musical accomplishments. They were truly amazing, but did they really have to choose the 2 longest songs on the face of the earth?! After the concert, we stopped by the “musical petting zoo” so Stacia could try out a violin. I sure hope she chooses a different instrument. The hesitant, I-have-no-idea-what-I’m-doing sound of a new violinist is not something I’m prepared to tolerate.

I hope your weekend was a Super Fun as mine! Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need a nap.

I found out the other day that my beloved Colts get the Thanksgiving Day game this year! I was very, very excited. Until I remembered that I will be in Florida that day for dinner with Mickey and a high school dance (don’t ask). My brother will be heading to the nearest sports bar to watch the game. Naturally, my dad and hubby will go with. I was all excited about the idea since I rarely get to go out, and when I go out with my dad he tends to pay the bar tab. Then it hit me—I’m a girl!

That means I’ll be stuck at the hotel playing woman. Why is it just assumed that because I’m a girl I don’t watch sports? I love my Pacers and I finally understand football enough to truly love my Colts too. It’s okay expected for a guy to watch all the basketball and football he can find. I’m supposed to sit by the pool in the hotel doing my nails while the men go out for beer. Not that I like beer—give me a screwdriver any day!

I just don’t make a very good girl. I can’t even tell you the last time I did my nails, I’m completely fashion-illiterate, and I’ll yell more obscenities at the tv than most guys I know. Though, if I were a dude, I’d just have to deal with the civil rights nightmare of being gay because, seriously, I ♥ men!

I don’t watch much tv—really, I don’t. More accurately, I don’t let the tv rule my life. I do have quite a few regular shows that I record and watch when I can. I currently record and watch: CSI, CSI Miami, CSI New York, Crossing Jordan, West Wing, Desperate Housewives, Joey, and ER. That’s, what, less than 8 hours of tv? I’m sure I fall below average.

Unless we have to factor in sports. During NBA playoffs, I’m pretty much a slave to my television. Football season is easier—one Sunday a week I can work around. This week though we get the Monday Night Football game. I thought this would only present a slight problem. We’d have to watch an hour of the game from the smaller tv upstairs while CSI Miami records.

We don’t have a cool DVR that lets you record and watch something else. That would be too easy.

And—thanks to stupid network wars—it gets even worse tonight. CSI is airing a “super-sized” episode tonight from 8:30-10:00. Okay, so we watch halftime from upstairs too. No big deal. Until NBC decides to do a stupid crossover with some random show I don’t watch. Like you can solve a crime in Vegas without Gary Dourdan.

Here comes the bigger problem. To see the “To be continued” from last night’s Crossing Jordan, we have to tune in from 8-9 tonight. See how they go about screwing me?

My Pacers are playing the Pistons in the Eastern Conference Finals. It should not be this stressful, but look at my nails and you’ll see how seriously I take this sort of thing.

Game 1:
I can’t honestly say I remember much of this game. I was pretty tired and fell asleep for at least a minute out of each quarter. Yes, I saw most of the game this way, but I was too tired to really remember what happened. Oh, except we won! Also, my brother called in the middle of the 4th quarter. He’s down in Florida and his radio wasn’t picking up right. I gave him a play by play for a bit. As it got down to the wire and it looked like we either might not win or we’d have overtime, he just kept saying “I told you we couldn’t beat this team.” To which I replied, “What-EVER.”

Game 2:
This was by far the worst officiated game in NBA history. Rasheed Wallace and his smart mouth were enough to tick me off; I really didn’t need the officials to help it along. I do have to admit that it was poorly called on both ends, but you’ll never convince me it wasn’t weighted against us.

Game 3:
I don’t get Rick Carlisle. I have been begging Donnie Walsh to hire him for 3 years, but this was madness. Everytime Anthony Johnson would have the team back in the game, he’d put Jamal Tinsley in to lose it for us. Jamal Tinsley is not a bad basketball player; he’s just a crappy point guard. He can’t create offense. He can’t run the ball. He can’t lead this team. So why is it that Carlisle keeps putting him in to throw the ball away?