I find myself in somewhat unusually buoyant spirits this frigid Monday morning. If nothing else, the fact that I've been walking down the halls doing the "stealth whistle" (a nigh inaudible whistling, under one's breath) to "47 Ginger Headed Sailors" ought to be an indication:
47 Ginger Headed Sailors
It's all the rage at the Drones at the moment.
After a brutal, disheartening failure to reproduce a true, slow smoked Kansas City BBQ slab of pork ribs last week, I've rallied the morale and am making plans to attack the challenge next year again, this time with a proper offset box smoker. There is only so much one can do with a small cheap charcoal grill designed for hot dogs and hamburgers. I'm sure the experts could have done better even with that, but hey, Rembrandt could have probably used a child's watercolor set to paint a masterpiece. My skill is not anywhere near that level, and I'll need to get the right tool for the job next year.
While I initially rooted a bit for Army given their underdog status on Saturday's game, I eventually returned to my senses, and realized that my heart was still in Annapolis, and so I cheered Navy on to win for the sixth straight time. That is my favourite football game of the year; each member of both teams is a scholar and an athlete, and the contest is unstained with the big business and professional overtones of college football in general. It is true that either team would probably get slaughtered by one of the big state college teams, but it is nice watching the Army Navy game because more than the other college football contests, this is truly just a game. It's not a job, it's not an internship, it isn't some sort of springboard into a pro career, and so there is a nice civility and sporting nature to it. These players will go on to be officers, engineers, pilots, astronauts, scientists, and government leaders. That in itself is quite impressive, and to these players (since in all likelihood they will never go "pro", having to serve 6 or so years in the service after graduation) the Army Navy game represents the climax of their years playing football, every bit as important to them as a Superbowl to a pro player. I'm not a football nut by any stretch, but I do like these games, they have a classic spirit to them, like some sort of older style of college sports, where it was more a game and less a business.