Pats in the Championship Game again

Yes, I know one dear friend who will love this blog when she sees it, given who she supports, and the fact that as a non Patriots fan, I’m writing nice things about them. Oh fine, she’s one of 2 people from Oklahoma that I care about a lot, and she was born a long time after the other one. Seemingly it was Kay Francis’s (30’s actress) birthday yesterday, and I fondly described her as the second most famous actress born in Oklahoma in 1905. That is a major exaggeration, as the one I was putting above her, was of course, Clara Johnson. And yes, Kay had the far bigger career lol!

But yes, strictly, other than a tie up to Kate, in that sense, this is all about the Patriots. They do seem to be one of those teams you either love, or hate, and generally, for me, as a Bills fan (of sorts), I’d be a hater. But fine, Kate influences me, lol! And well, they are the only way I would ever put a finger in a Superbowl ring, so… Yes, this is my finger! (Taken at Patriots Place, Foxborough, by Kate)

Anyway, to get back to serious matters, last night, they qualified for their 7th consecutive AFC Championship game. The last time they didnt? 2011, beaten by the Jets, who they had thumped in the regular season only weeks before. And thats it, ever since then…its been Patriots, and someone! Quite an incredible record. So yes, however much it might hurt me to say it, congrats, Patriots, thats quite a record.

Funnily enough, I have a connection to 3 of the stadiums being used this weekend, even if I’ve never been in any of them. Pittsburgh is the one miss, though I have been to the city, but never seen the stadium. New England, yes, been to Patriots Place, where the stadium is, as the picture shows. Philadelphia, I’ve stood across the road from, when I went to a baseball game in town. Minneapolis is the most fascinating one, because I have been in a stadium, on that site. But yes, its the now demolished one, replaced by their current building, and I was there for baseball, not football. The only other NFL stadium I’ve been in? Again, that was for baseball, and now the only one that hosts both, Oakland Coliseum! And that will be losing football in a couple of years, seemingly! Though its gained my favorite football man, the gorgeous Jon Gruden. Yes, I’m still waiting my invite from him, lol!

The video tonight, I’ve played with the title, for the blog. You know all these stupid things they say about which pop star who died young that you’d love to see in a concert, here’s mine!

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Cincinnati, never really noticed you before

Let me just say that anyone that knows this song is at least as old as me, and must have been a fan of this group, given this was the B side of one of their early hits. And sadly, thats why I cant find a ‘live’ video of it, I guess?

Most of the PR stuff I’ve seen coming out of the NFL this season, especially fan wise, has not been pretty, so I thought I’d better mention this, to try and balance the books. At the weekend, was the final week of the regular season. Remarkably, after 17 years of playoff frustration, Buffalo were still in contention for a place. Admittedly, a couple of results had to go their way, one of which involved them winning, which they did, but with a few minutes to go in other games, it was not going to be enough to break that jinx.

Why, because Baltimore were winning, Tennessee had already won, and if things stayed that way, then those 2 teams were going into the playoffs, and Buffalo would miss out yet again. But then, in Baltimore, the Cincinnati quarterback, Andy Dalton threw up a pass, someone caught it, scored a touchdown, took the lead, and suddenly Buffalo were in the playoffs! Yes, delighted, but thats not what this is all about.

You see, Andy Dalton, and his wife have set up a foundation that donates money to childrens causes in both Cincinnati, and the Fort Worth area (which I assume is where he is from?), and all of a sudden, some grateful Buffalo fans started making donations to it, mainly $17 (relating to the years of hurt), and then it all went viral! As of earlier today, grateful Buffalo fans (and possibly players, officials, and owners?) have donated over $200,000 to his foundation!

And all because of one pass, from a player on a team for whom victory wasnt going to change anything, but now… a lot of children will be very grateful to him for doing it. A moment that has turned into a wonderful story.

OK, the video, or tonight, the non video, of a moving kind at least. This 1971 B side seemed the most obvious song to use, somehow!

Sudden death with Buffalo

No, dont worry, its nothing serious thats happened, just the opposite in fact. But I had to do something to fit in with the video lol!

Yes, within the next hour or so, all the American Football left this season will be sudden death, knock out stuff. As I write this, the last ‘normal’ Bowls are being played, the last NFL season games were played yesterday, so after that…

Firstly, tonight, we get the 2 college football ‘semi finals’ for want of a better word, where Georgia take on Oklahoma, and Clemson take on Alabama. A week later, the two winners get to meet for their Championship. The most interesting thing for me has been the multiple shots of the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, to be honest. Well, except that with a little more discovery work today, I now know where, and when a certain young lady was born in Oklahoma! Yes, on 6th September 1905, a baby girl was born somewhere in Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma. Thats right, a baby named Clara Elaine Johnson! Tried googling for Oklahoma birth and death records, tried her name on the site, then lo, and behold… Looking at a map, she wouldnt have been a million miles from where Oklahoma University would have been! Of course, given she left Texas for LA in 1925, how long she lived there, no idea?

Ah, the title of the blog? Yes, thats the NFL bit. For over 30 years, through thick and thin, I’ve supported the Buffalo Bills. The late 80’s, and most of the 90’s were pretty good times, but other than that, no! Until yesterday, they were the team with the longest interval since previously being in the play offs, 18 years. Not now!
It wasnt hard to see them winning before I went to bed last night, and Baltimore were losing, 2 facts which meant they would be in, but there was still about a half of football to go for each. Bills won, but until nearly the end, Baltimore were clinging on for a win seemingly, then Cincinnati scored, Baltimore lost, and Buffalo were in the play offs.

Oh fine, I found out when I opened my emails this morning (one was from team, mentioning they were in play offs), which made a nice way to start 2018! They now get to play Jacksonville, who were last in the play offs in 2007, and last played a home play off game in 1999, the last time Buffalo made the play offs! No, they didnt play each other then! Oh, and I’d better mention the Los Angeles Rams, who won their division, leading to the first play off game in LA since 1994, though for much of that time, no team was in town! By coincidence, leading to another Georgia team heading to LA!

Right, video time. For those of you who read both, I used this video on the other blog recently, so you’re not seeing things. For those who dont, enjoy a classic 30’s musical! And all those girls sharing sleeping berths, shocking stuff lol! 😛

Walk of life, and death.

When it comes to US sports, my longest term love has to be the NFL. Primarily because it was the first one shown on TV over here, back in the mid 1980’s, and I’ve pretty much followed it ever since then. In that time, its changed channels, its changed from being recorded highlights, to 1 game a week, to the numerous games per week we have now over the years, but its always been around.

For many years now, providing most of that much improved coverage has been Sky Sports. Even then, they’ve been through a few presenters over the years, but for many of them, there was 1 American guy there, who definitely knew what he was talking about (unlike some of the UK ones), and even better, was a fellow Buffalo Bills fan, through thick and thin. Well, I suppose had a good reason, he was born in the city, whereas I just picked them out purely at random!

Then tonight, when the coverage of the game from London started, I heard the sad news that he’d passed away, at the age of 62! Hey, he’s not that much older than me, and believe me, I feel my age at present, anyway! So…I just want to say, Kevin Cadle, I’m going to miss seeing you on TV, and yes, rest in peace.

I guess it would be wrong (and I’d hate myself if I didnt) not to mention a certain team in the World Series, starting Tuesday (strictly, Wednesday morning, my time), the Los Angeles Dodgers. Yes, its a shame its only happened the first year after Vin Scully retired, though such is life. I have seen people hoping he will do something, but hey, he’s fast approaching 90, so I dont blame him for saying no, so far at least. Who me, a Dodgers fan? Well…

No, I wont see any of it live, all going to happen in the middle of the night over here, and I’m too old, and fragile for things like that, even if I wasnt working! I’ll see some presentation hopefully, though no idea how much? But yes, naturally, I’ll be dreaming of a Dodgers Championship, though only from afar. It will actually be strange next May, assuming I decide I’m up to the trip, when I see a game in Seattle, its been a long time since I saw one other than Dodgers Stadium, but…I can at least add another to my stadium visit list, as I say, health permitting. With luck, and finances, I hope to add the White Sox to my collection next September, though that might be a step too far on both counts!

The video is one with plenty of NFL, plenty of baseball, and some basketball too, which Cadle was a top coach in. Yes, its an oldie, the Houston Oilers no longer exist, so…

Stand by your man?

I do wonder if Trump realized on Friday when he made the speech about the NFL, and the players, and the National Anthem, that it was always going to end badly, right? I mean, telling people that if they dont stand for the National Anthem, that they should be sacked on the spot, was always going to end well, not!

I suppose the only thing you could say he has succeeded in doing, is to some degree uniting the players, their bosses, and the NFL head people by his statement. Yes, its been fair to say today, judging by the reports I’ve read, its backfired on him, big time! No, I’m not surprised, but anyway…

Funny thing is, it seems some NFL fans wont be watching any more games (yes, I’ll stop laughing soon) because of it, and others will watch games because of the players doing it, priceless stuff.

The biggest irony, the people that seem to be defending the players the most over their choice are the military, and they are the people most of the ‘Trump-ettes’ say would be the most offended by it. Yes, I know…

But fine, I know he’s not the brightest star in the sky, but did he seriously think this would work out well? Ah well…

The video? No, not Tammy Wynette, the setting here seems more apt for the NFL fans somehow lol

A view to a chill

Yes, I know, its been a while, so, what would you like me to tell you about? Being wired up so I rode in a Davros type wheelchair, rather than being pushed in a standard one? That nice mad scientist I met who transformed me into my past life self, Clara Johnson, at the age of 25, with all her dancing skills (and seemingly she had plenty), so I’ve been dancing the nights away at delightful flapper style parties, darlings? Or the journey on that flying saucer that whisked me across the Atlantic, in about an hour, maybe? Flight diverted to Hollywood, so I could sign up for a big acting role? Or would you prefer the dull, actual, truthful version of events lol?

Oh, by the way, if anyone wants to set me up for any of those first 4 events mentioned, I’d love it! I know, I know, in my dreams, nothing more…but… 😉

OK, lets catch up on reality, before I get the full makeover, as mentioned above! Ooh, that would be fun, mind!

Saturday saw my first ride in a wheelchair for 50 years. I suspect it wont be the last holiday I need one at an airport, but we will see… It started off smoothly enough, as I got wheeled through security, and me, and my luggage checked over, without me actually ever leaving the chair. Then, after a slight delay on the flight (plane had to stop inbound, due to a medical issue, so was nearly an hour late leaving), I was wheeled down to the gate, and told someone would be back to take me down to the plane to board. Yes, fine, never happened, so eventually the Rep asked if the 2 of us were able to get to the plane under our own steam, so I went for it. Unfortunately, having taken the brace off, thinking I wouldnt need it again (its neoprene, and warm to wear for very long periods), I struggled the way with my hand luggage, and pulled it off. But yes, instead of having plenty of time to stow my bag, I was pretty much the last one on, but as I had a double seat to myself, I was able to get my bag stowed away anyway.

Arrival at Boston was good, and efficiently done. The two of us might have been the last ones off, but we were probably 2 of the Brits through first, all the same. Given I have a black, expanding suitcase, just like dozens of others, I need to get some pink, or rainbow tagging around the handle, so I can recognize it easier, even more so when you arent close to the conveyor belt, being in a wheelchair, and all that!

The rest of the day, just fine. After arrival at hotel (Kate had already booked us both in), we ended up calling out for food, chatting a lot, just having a good time.

Sunday afternoon, we came down to this glorious place we’ve rented on Cape Cod. Well, Kate did all the hard work booking it, I just paid a share of the costs really. Yes, its gorgeous! I’m sat in the living area, with a stunning view of the sea, typing this now. We ended up having pizza, watching NFL, just having fun.

Monday, being 2 ladies of reasonable leisure for the week, and given that neither of us are in the perkiest of health, we had a quiet day. Finished off for me at least, by getting my annual chance to swoon over Jon Gruden on Monday Night Football!

This morning, I had a couple of cups of coffee, sat outside, complete with a couple of muffins for breakfast, and just enjoyed the sun. Havent seen a lot of it in the UK this summer, so a real delight. Since then, just relaxed, and given my body the break it really needs. We’re here, somewhere near Mashpee, on Cape Cod, until Thursday morning, and I’m loving every minute of it. Might get another ride in a wheelchair at the 2 stations on Thursday, will have to wait and see. Or the next one, may be at JFK on Monday evening!

Yes, Thursday, I need to start getting into bridesmaid mode, but more on that later in the week. Thats when I could really do with that 25 year old, Clara Johnson makeover lol, especially if I’m expected to dance at the reception afterwards, as I currently have 2 left feet, in that sense. Where’s a good mad scientist when you need one, lol?

Right, video time. Yes, the blog title is a slightly tweaked version of that

Last cut is the deepest

Its hard to believe that its nearly time for the NFL season to start seriously again, but this time next week, we’ll be looking at the opening game, and Kate and I will be gently teasing each other, as its Kansas City, against New England, so that will be fun! Its just a shame that its 2 days before we could have watched it together, and stirred each other up together, but such is life. The likely possibility, given New England wont be playing on the Sunday, is that I will get to see the Buffalo Bills, play the New York Jets, 2 teams that pretty much seem to be throwing away their seasons before they even get started. Yes, strictly the Bills are my team, but I’ve seen so much awful right wing, racist stuff written by their fans on social media of late (mostly about the anthem stuff), that I find it hard to get involved with them, in truth. Oh, and not to forget, the Monday night game, and my one chance this autumn to see the gorgeousness that is Jon Gruden! Swoon!

But why now, why the blog title, you ask? Well, tonight marks the last round of pre season games (other than the one in Texas, cancelled for obvious reasons), and after that, the huge squads that the teams currently carry, have to be trimmed back drastically. Most of those getting the chop will be players we’ve never heard of, but some of whom will either be plucked up for practice squads, or selected when injuries start to take their toll on teams. There will also be a number of relatively ‘more famous’ players who will be cut, for salary reasons. Again some will be plucked by other teams, some will get picked when injuries strike, but for a few, that will be it.

Before I sound too sorry for them, lets just remember what crazy salaries these people earn! In some cases, cutting 1 player cuts $6 million from a wage bill! But yes, for those young men, its still a tough time, if you’re the one thats cut. And thats on top of those who should have, but never got called to a team this summer…whistles innocently…

No, I’d have made a lousy cheerleader, even when I was young, lol! 😛

The video, you could say, as so often, there is a clue in the title. This is pretty much the original version of the song, Cat Stevens, from 1967! Yes, I really am that old, I was 9 then!