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Special Olympics - Les Faits Saillants

I know I’ve posted Jamie’s Special Olympics exploits before, but this is different. Now Jamie’s in the big time. The statewide Special Olympics.  The Show.

Since 2005, he’s competed in three events in the Centre County games: the 50m run, the standing long jump, and the softball throw.  Bless his heart, but only one of these events really challenged him athletically; as I remarked four years ago, he hadn’t ever run 50m—or 10m, for all I know—in his life.  The important thing, though, was that the local Special Olympics introduced him to the idea of athletic competition.

This year, as many of you know, I had the Bright Idea® of introducing Jamie to competitive swimming.  And after his stupefyingly triumphant debut this spring, it looked like this was one Bright Idea® whose time had come.  But then, a few weeks later, because Jamie’s parents are sometimes confused and discombobulated, we forgot that the next meet took place on a Saturday rather than a Sunday, so Jamie missed that one.  Last week’s Pennsylvania Special Olympics, in other words, were only Jamie’s second experience of doing the swimming-racing thing.

And I had to miss the games!  But Janet was there, and she brought our brand new digital videorecording device, and here, for your Jamie-blogging pleasure, are the results.

First, however, you need to know that Janet’s visual style is rather different from mine.  Janet studied for nine years with legendary videocam director Max von Schaechenholden:

The object of this technique, as you have probably surmised, is to disrupt the subject’s suturing into the Western scopic imaginary and its panoptic regime of “visibility” and “intelligibility”:

Note how the camera refuses to “represent” the large “crowd” at the Special Olympics, turning instead to the shoes of the common people, in a détournement of the well-worn Van Gogh motif.  Interestingly, Janet employs this “de-personalization device” even when the camera is ostensibly “identifying” a “person.” In the following clip of the opening ceremonies, we briefly see Jamie in a grey hoodie; then, at 0:12, Janet asks about Jamie’s dorm roommate, “where’s Austin?” Though she answers her own question, crying “there’s Austin” at 0:22, there is a crucial irruption in the ideological-identificatory apparatus:  the camera immediately proceeds to evoke the opening scene of Blue Velvet, as it plunges deep into the very grass of the field itself before pulling back and revealing the “person” known to the Western scopic imaginary as “Austin.”

Michael’s going to make fun of my camera work? Merciful Moloch, do I look like the kind of asshole who makes fun of his wife’s camera work?  (Though of course asking what I “look like” is itself a speech act that testifies to the hegemony of the Western scopic imaginary.)

OK, enough making fun of Janet’s camera work.  Because once the Olympics got going, Janet had a much tougher filming task than I did: whereas I was allowed to walk up and down the length of the pool at St. Francis University, Janet had to sit in the stands at the Penn State Natatorium and film from a great distance.  Which is, you know, harder to do.  So here’s Jamie as he makes his entrance—with the new bathing suit and goggles Janet bought him a few days earlier.  What a He-Man!  What a Hero of the Beach!

And here’s his first prelim, the 25 meter backstroke.  You can see he’s up against much stiffer competition than he saw in April; but even though he finishes fourth or fifth (we can’t tell, cough camera work cough), he shaves a few seconds off his personal best time.

His next prelim was the 25 meter freestyle, with much the same result: back in the pack, but 3-4 seconds faster than in April.  Clearly, he’s stepping it up, bringing it, playing his game, and staying within himself, though he’s not quite at that Next Level yet:

The really dramatic improvement, though, came in the 50 meter.  Check out the very end:

He finishes third in a four-man race, yeah, but that was a good kick, and ZOMG look at that time! 1:06.07!  Ten seconds faster than the 1:16 from the sectionals! And that 1:16, in turn, was a dramatic improvement on his 1:32.85 qualifying time.  Citius, altius, fortius, my son!

Two more clips, this time from the final competitions on Saturday.  First, the 50m, where he’s dead last by a full body length at the 35m mark until he busts it and somehow kicks himself into second place:

Second, the 25m, where he finishes either fourth or fifth by a fraction of a hair, but breaks the 30-second barrier for the first time:

Congratulations, Jamie!  You did not win, but you were brave in the attempt.  And you came away with a silver, a bronze, and a ribbon.  Not bad for your second meet, and your first appearance in the statewide games.  Your reward is . . . game six of the Stanley Cup final!  (Aside: Oh, and by the way: he did really well living parentless in the Penn State dorms for two nights.  Our young man is growing up.  And now I am going to cry.  Don’t mind me.  Discuss among yourselves.)

Many thanks (really, sincerely this time) to Janet for capturing all this—and much more!—from way up in the stands.  And for yelling encouragement to Jamie from way up in the stands, too!  Janet says she was trying to make up for the fact that (a) the other athletes had entire cheering sections and (b) her husband the bum wasn’t even there to cheer on the kid.  Well, I’ve learned my lesson.  No more speaking gigs this time of year!

OK, off to Pittsburgh for the final home game of the year.  Here’s hoping there will be one more away game left to play....

Posted by on 06/09 at 02:05 PM
  1. ME: “You know how I’ve been tripping about the continent recently, like a tripper?  Well, now that I’m back, I’m going to drop hundreds of dollars on tickets to a sporting event.  And then I’m going to make fun of your camera work in a public forum.”

    SPOUSE: [THROAT PUNCH]

    MDSLET: [SPIT]

    Okay, the last step would have happened regardless.  But my point still stands: I envy you even more now, Professor, for your mad household pants-wearing skillz.

    Have fun at the game.  And a shower of congratulations to Master Bérubé for a splendid athletic performance.

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  03:49 PM
  2. Okay--a few points:

    1. Way to go Jamie! That’s fast improvement. In no time you’ll be swimming the 200m butterfly in -35 seconds.

    2. The mockery is funny, but I think it justifies Janet stabbing you, Dr. B.

    3. I laughed, so I suppose it justifies her stabbing me, too.

    Posted by Jason B.  on  06/09  at  03:54 PM
  3. Wow! I hope Janet extracts a pound of your flesh in whatever way she deems meet. Might we hope for a guest post from Janet detailing that?

    Two nights in the dorm?!? Whoa.

    Congrats to Jamie on setting new PRs! Sports accomplishments are not my thing at all, so I’m a little in awe of people who get out there and just do it.

    Posted by Orange  on  06/09  at  04:20 PM
  4. Your lovely wife is so going to duct tape your butt cheeks together while you’re sleeping tonight.

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  05:05 PM
  5. The professor has a unique relationship with water it seems.  First he flies through its vapors, thence aquaints himself with the liquid form, and finally witnesses special dances on ice--all within three days. 

    As for the film critique: why can’t those who receive such large compensation for their reviews (like TV appearances and full columns in bankrupt papers and magazines), even begin to offer the insights and critical eyes of MB?  Oh, the captcha helps: “college.” The failing must be in the comfort of legacy generationalism in the movie review industry?  Regardless of the potential physical violence from the above film critique and alienation, it was superbly crafted.

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  05:53 PM
  6. Thanks for posting this wonderful thing, Michael, and congratulations Jamie!

    Posted by John Protevi  on  06/09  at  05:55 PM
  7. That was brilliant!  Congratulations Jamie on the great performances, the medals, and the PRs. Geez, why am I tearing up??

    Janet, lovely work on the soft focus. I kept looking for that Hitchcock thing where the director inserts himself or herself in a frame. And thanks for posting this Michael.

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  06:18 PM
  8. Great job, Jamie! Is swimming becoming Jamie’s favorite new sport to compete in?

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  06:36 PM
  9. Congratulations to Jaime!!

    Posted by bitchphd  on  06/09  at  07:18 PM
  10. Jamie’s rush for the silver in the 50m reminds me of Michael Phelps’ furious finish in the 100m butterfly in Beijing.  Kudos to Jamie for all the personal bests and his great competitive spirit.  Excelsior!

    Posted by fsg  on  06/09  at  07:29 PM
  11. All parties present and introduced here at the Igloo, swimmers, profs and whatnot. Apparently some will only get as far as Altoona on the way home tonight. Prudent driving or buttcheek protection program? I report; you decide.

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  07:46 PM
  12. Cool - I’m the Decider!(As it always should be, anyway).

    Hey hockey crew - do some fan yelling for me! The more inappropriate the better, of course. No wait, the kid is with you. Do some appropriate fan yelling for me.

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  07:52 PM
  13. Prudent driving or buttcheek protection program?

    Why can’t it be both, like when Earl Warren attended hockey games?

    Hang on - JP Stormcrow is really commenting telephonically from Teh Game?  Why don’t you provide updates via your “Twitter feed?” Heeheeheeheehee.

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  08:49 PM
  14. Running out of phone juice though. Need a chorus of hang on Fleury, Fleury hang on.

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  09:45 PM
  15. Damn librul empathy.  Knowing JP and our host and Jamie are at the game is taking the edge off my “crush them like eggs” attitude.

    Posted by Nell  on  06/09  at  09:53 PM
  16. I realize that this humble blog attracts a lot of Pens fans, but I had big money on Detroit in 6, and now the there’s a big guy at the door looking for his dough.  On the bright side: Is there anything better than a Game Seven?

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  10:54 PM
  17. Nell - heeheehee! I see you saw my comment on the previous thread, and how true it is: empathy = wimpathy, so now you have to pay the price. But no worries, I’m guessing you’re pretty confident about Game 7 at home in Detroit.

    JP - damn, I was really sweating on your behalf during that last period. I’ll bet if any Pens fans didn’t have gray hair before, they have some now. Anyway, I’m very happy you and M and J got to see a win tonight.

    I had big money on Detroit in 6, and now the there’s a big guy at the door looking for his dough.  On the bright side: Is there anything better than a Game Seven?

    Watching Game 7 without broken kneecaps?

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  11:10 PM
  18. And        there        was         NO DOUBT ABOUT IT!

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  11:14 PM
  19. Listening to the hoop game on the radio. Orlando lead is crumbling, seems like they’re trying to steal defeat from the jaws of victory. But now that we know more about Orlando’s owner, I’m not as sad about that as I’d be otherwise. Normally, being the weak-ass librul that I am, I’d be cheering for the underdog Magic.

    captcha: seven, as in, see you in Detroit!

    Posted by  on  06/09  at  11:41 PM
  20. Orlando hangs on for the win. Lakers better get their shit together so I don’t have to force myself to actively cheer for them, cuz that’d be really hard to stomach.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  12:01 AM
  21. Toldja: all 7, man. Pens in 7.
    All is going according to plan good guess.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  12:31 AM
  22. Lakers in 5. I always thought the Magic would win either game 3 or game 4.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  12:36 AM
  23. This post is sheer joy.

    Posted by Dåvïd J Swîft  on  06/10  at  12:49 AM
  24. For christian h: once a Bruin, always a Laker fan???? I sorta went the other way, but still gold is gold.

    One can hope that MB will find tix for Detroit so that the lift the Pens receive with Michael and Jamie in the house carry over to a Stanley Cup.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  01:06 AM
  25. Apologies for the Pacific Northwest’s hygroscopic distraction from Jamie’s athletic exploits.  Never return to Portland when the @#$%!  Rose Festival is underway-- it <i>always<i> rains when that lame brouhaha is in full swing, despite the fact that the wet season’s supposedly behind us.

    Come again in January or February and we’ll show you some seasonally appropriate aquatic theater. 

    Stroke on bravely, Jamie!  You rock.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  01:21 AM
  26. /

    Oops, too late.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  01:24 AM
  27. If my husband made fun of my stuff like that, I’d be too busy laughing and kissing him to get mad.  Awesome swimming, there, too, thanks.

    “human”

    Posted by 99  on  06/10  at  01:35 AM
  28. Awesome stuff here, Jamie. And congratulations on escaping your parents for a couple of days. It is nerve wracking, though, isn’t it Michael? Russell did a school trip a while back staying in dorms without direct supervision. I was anxious, but he was a star.

    Posted by Clare  on  06/10  at  09:56 AM
  29. Amazing videos of James—he’s a star. 

    So after Janet kills you to death, will she continue the blog herself or what?

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  10:18 AM
  30. and now the there’s a big guy at the door looking for his dough.

    I had to pay for those tickets somehow.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  11:00 AM
  31. Michael wrote, “Note how the camera refuses to “represent” the large “crowd” at the Special Olympics, turning instead to the shoes of the common people, in a détournement of the well-worn Van Gogh motif.”

    Of course this technique predates von Schaechenholden. In Otto Mänchen-Helfen’s Journey to Tuva we find the excerpt,

    “I saw the beautiful Pudovkin film Mother there. Tuvans rode from far and wide to view this wonder. The film broke at least twenty times that night, but that only made the audience happy! So much the better! Now the fairy tale could last that much longer. They couldn’t understand anything, not the slightest bit. The subtitles were in Russian. They couldn’t read them, but their pleasure was nevertheless unending. When horses appeared the whole place went crazy. They screamed and jumped up, they had a magnificent time. They didn’t worry at all about who was a gendarme and who was a revolutionary, because they didn’t understand what the fight was about. Whoever just fired…that was their man! Only once were they incensed and raving. I didn’t understand the reason. The film didn’t show anything outlandish: running feet, a raised arm, a face. But that was precisely why. What they were shouting was translated for me: ‘We paid full price! Why do you show us just a foot? Where is the head? We want to see the whole person! ‘”

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  11:51 AM
  32. OK, I guess I’ve stopped hyperventilating enough after the last 2 minutes of the Penguins game to say a couple of things. One, hands in the air for everyone who thought that breakaway with 90 seconds to go was going to tie the game. Two, how did Scuderi stop from putting his glove on the puck in the crease with 13 (!) seconds left? Almost another Hand of God*, but not really.

    * see Maradona, Diego, World Cup semifinals 1990.**

    ** I always want to add that on the short list of every collection of “best goals evar” has to be the one DM scored after the Hand of God goal.

    Posted by John Protevi  on  06/10  at  12:11 PM
  33. As for the spousal mockery:  as I sifted through Janet’s hours (!) of footage, I came across the “Michael’s gonna make fun of my camera work” moment.  I realized at once that this was not so much a prediction as an invitation—nay, an incitement.  I was simply trying to hold up my end in an appropriate manner.

    But—ow!—I have to say that—ow!—removing duct tape from your—ow!—butt cheeks is harder than I thought it would be.

    Vaguely suggestive Chi-Lites’ O-Girl @ 8:

    Is swimming becoming Jamie’s favorite new sport to compete in?

    You betcha!  -Wink.-

    Clare @ 28: 

    It is nerve wracking, though, isn’t it Michael?

    It is profoundly unsettling.  But not nearly as bad, as wracking goes, as a Cleary breakaway with less than two minutes remaining, followed by a scramble in the crease with :15 to go.

    And how did JP get in here?  All that time we were doing between-periods commentary, he didn’t tell me he had an electronical device with him!

    And there was NO DOUBT ABOUT IT!

    True, except for that breakaway, and that scramble in the crease, and those two Detroit power plays, following those two needless penalties in the offensive zone—practically the only mistakes the Pens made all night.

    OK, now to look for the tape-remover goop.

    Posted by Michael  on  06/10  at  12:14 PM
  34. Congratulations to Jamie! 

    (Michael, have you ever considered joining Facebook?)

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  12:42 PM
  35. mds: One, hands in the air for everyone who thought that breakaway with 90 seconds to go was going to tie the game.

    [Sullenly raises hands in air.  Makes ‘feh’ gesture with both of them.  Returns them to keyboard.]

    Scuderi played an outstanding game, never more so than in his goaltending stint, where he used his leg and the stick with pretty excellent form, and then, hand millimeters above the puck, seemed to come to himself and remember that he was not allowed to do the full impression.

    Posted by Nell  on  06/10  at  01:09 PM
  36. Thanks for backing me up, Michael. I knew JP had to be full of shit, (or simply joking), when he implied that the Pens fans weren’t sweatin’ the finish.

    Vaguely suggestive Chi-Lites’ O-Girl @ 8:

    Cool. I like it that everyone who chooses to do so can have a different song running through their head for all the variations of my blog name. But I tell you whut: it better be at least a decent song, otherwise I’m going after kneecaps. Seriously.

    * see Maradona, Diego, World Cup semifinals 1990.*

    Hey Protevi - how can we “see” it if you won’t provide a link to the video clip? Pffft. Barbarian.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  01:14 PM
  37. I knew JP had to be full of shit, (or simply joking)

    Or both!

    But, yes, the Malkin penalty happened right below us (did not really see Guerin’s despite it happening pretty much in the same place), and my immediate thought was, “How much more clueless a penalty could you take than a blatant cross-check during a scrum along the boards in your own zone when you are up one goal in the third period of a Stanley Cup elimination game where the defending champions have been been coming on strong after you had your way with them for a lot of the game up until then*?”. And the answer was: None. None more clueless. And I’ve now watched some video of the Scuderi save(s). Wow!

    The last few minutes was one of those times where a lot of the team’s and some of the whole city’s psyche is at stake; not holding a two-goal mid-3rd period lead in that situation would have been hard to get past (and rather Clevelandesque). Glad to get a game 7, but I think it will be tough for the Pens. My initial goal for them is to at least keep it a competitive game going into the 3rd.

    *Although latter part of the 2nd period not so much.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  01:41 PM
  38. Thanks for backing me up, Michael. I knew JP had to be full of shit, (or simply joking), when he implied that the Pens fans weren’t sweatin’ the finish.

    Oh, come now.  Clearly, the breathlessly defensive delivery, the clammy sweat, the thousand-yard stare...* All of these made it obvious that this was simply JP Stormcrow’s repentance, or “Oh, Pens, how could I ever have doubted you?” Because there were certainly points when ve was denying them three times.

    And speaking of JP, and being mistaken for one:

    mds: One, hands in the air for everyone who thought that breakaway with 90 seconds to go was going to tie the game.

    That was exciting, wasn’t it, Nell?  Also, I have apparently become John Protevi.  Now I have to move to Louisiana and become an incontinent philosopher.**

    But I tell you whut: it better be at least a decent song, otherwise I’m going after kneecaps. Seriously.

    Oh, whoops.  [CRYPTIC FRIGHTENED PAUSE]

    *Everyone else gets Internet in 3D Feelaround***, right?

    **Kidding, kidding, Professor Protevi!  It was just a pun.  Loved your work on cyborgs.  Can’t wait for the movie version.  Please don’t hurt my other kneecaps.

    ***Chick- Oh, forget it.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  01:45 PM
  39. And how did JP get in here?  All that time we were doing between-periods commentary, he didn’t tell me he had an electronical device with him!

    Er, um, yeah .. forgot to mention that didn’t I, and, um, everything you said was, like, recorded or something. At one point, while over in my seat, I did think that I should mention it/offer it to you to post, but it really was almost completely out of juice. Plus I guess I also violated the sanctity of off-blog communication with the mention of Altoona. But speaking of which (and not to rub it in ... too much), let it be noted that my 11:14 comment was made from the comfort of my home.

    Shorter JP: I suck! in multiple ways! But I don’t care!

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  02:08 PM
  40. Ooops.  Apologies to mds and John Protevi.

    I blame the asterisks.

    captcha: name - as in, “what’s in a”

    Posted by Nell  on  06/10  at  02:25 PM
  41. OK, OK, Oaktown Girl! Here’s the H o’ G goal.

    Here is the following one: see what I mean about maybe the greatest evar?

    mds: I like “incontinent philosopher” as I tend to have, ahem, “issues” with brevity in my writing. And speaking of cyborgs, did you see John Hodgman on Jon Stewart last night? “I vill be baaack!”

    Captcha: “wrong” as in, “is it so?”

    Posted by John Protevi  on  06/10  at  02:29 PM
  42. Husband,

    Not to get all ressentimenty or anything, but did you mention that the camera is right-handed and I am left-handed?
    Dextrist.

    JWL, cinemaster

    (captcha: trying.  ahem.)

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  02:50 PM
  43. One, hands in the air for everyone who thought that breakaway with 90 seconds to go was going to tie the game.

    I had both hands in the air at the time, as I recall.  Because that’s precisely how you lose games like this—by winning a critical faceoff in the defensive end and then turning the #$@@!(&^&&#xe;r; over at the blue line so that their best player can spring his hot-handed linemate for a frigging breakaway.  Jeez, that went right according to script—except for the “gave-saving save” part.

    JP:  The last few minutes was one of those times where a lot of the team’s and some of the whole city’s psyche is at stake; not holding a two-goal mid-3rd period lead in that situation would have been hard to get past (and rather Clevelandesque).

    Yes, I had that thought.  “Buffalonian,” I might have said, but then this would bring up an off-blog conversation JP and I have been having, from the sanctity of our homes, about precisely where the Midwest and the Rust Belt begin and end.  (The point being that Pittsburgh is not entirely midwestern b/c of its Rusty Beltiness, which it shares with Buffalo and Cleveland.) If Cleary scores, or if the puck squeaks in on that scramble, I don’t see how the Penguins haul themselves out of the locker room for OT.  Then again, the Rangers coughed up a hairball with seven seconds left in game 7 against the Devils, and managed to sneak one by Brodeur only two periods later....  Still.  It is very bad indeed to blow a two-goal lead after dominating 2/3 of the game.  Bad for the municipal psyche, bad for the environment.

    Plus I guess I also violated the sanctity of off-blog communication with the mention of Altoona. But speaking of which (and not to rub it in ... too much), let it be noted that my 11:14 comment was made from the comfort of my home.

    Oh, great.  Now it’s rubbed in right where the duct tape used to be.  And thanks to JP’s indiscreet “tweeting” or whatever it is, they were waiting for me in Altoona when Jamie and I finally rolled in at 1:05 am.

    Now all the way back up to mds @ 1:

    I envy you even more now, Professor, for your mad household pants-wearing skillz.

    Hey, I envy me!  And that makes two Spinal Tap references in this thread.  But you should probably know that I came home to a truly amazing estimate for the backyard landscaping Janet wants done (and which actually does need to be done so that we can actually enter and use the dang backyard).  But that’s OK.  I’m told that you have to do the depantsification before they perform the radical moneyectomy.

    OK, I’m gonna open a game 6 thread.  And then pack for DC, where I’ll have to find someplace good to watch game 7.

    Posted by Michael  on  06/10  at  02:57 PM
  44. Husband,

    Not to get all ressentimenty or anything, but did you mention that the camera is right-handed and I am left-handed?
    Dextrist.

    JWL, cinemaster

    Whoa.  So that’s why I heard those sinister “typing” sounds from down the hall.  But how did she get through the Expression Engine 5.0 Spousal Filter????

    Ahem.

    Wyf,

    You are left-handed?  Why didn’t I know this?

    Husband.

    Posted by Michael  on  06/10  at  03:00 PM
  45. You are left-handed?  Why didn’t I know this?

    So MB is Inigo Montoya and Janet is the Man in Black?

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  03:06 PM
  46. Indeed!  And now I believe I have committed one of the two classic blunders.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  03:35 PM
  47. The point being that Pittsburgh is not entirely midwestern b/c of its Rusty Beltiness, which it shares with Buffalo and Cleveland.

    As someone born in Iowa, I will say that I never thought of Pittsburgh as being Midwestern at all, let alone “not entirely.” People actually entertain this notion?

    I’m told that you have to do the depantsification before they perform the radical moneyectomy.

    Chicka-Wow Chicka-Wow Wow!

    Now it’s rubbed in right where the duct tape used to be.

    ...Nah, too easy.

    And thanks to JP’s indiscreet “tweeting”

    Chicka-Wow Chicka-Wow Wow!  (Blame Oaktown Girl for that one.)

    You are left-handed?  Why didn’t I know this?

    Look, I’ll just go away for a little while, okay?

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  04:28 PM
  48. A real Heartlander isn’t convinced that Ohio belongs to the Midwest. It’s in the Eastern time zone—I think it’s gotta be in the East. We will, however, accept Ohio provisionally owing to its membership among the Great Lakes states.

    Missouri’s very nearly a Southern state, too.

    captcha: here—right here in the Midwest’s midsection, the very viscera of the region

    Posted by Orange  on  06/10  at  04:34 PM
  49. mds - sure, happy to take the blame for that.

    John - thanks for the video link. That was indeed one amazing goal. And I loved listening to the announcer!

    And John, I know you’re a newby on the blogs, but stick with it. Soon you’ll be familiar with All Internet Traditions. Then, when you’re a seasoned vet, you won’t keep referring people to stuff without posting the damn links, or at least apologizing for not being able to find the link (the latter being Internet Tradition 226-A, Subsection B).

    {Yes, this is all a roundabout way of saying that if you would simply anticipate my needs ahead of time and then meet them, we’d all be happier. And by “we”, I mean “me”.}

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  04:35 PM
  50. I never thought of Pittsburgh as being Midwestern at all, let alone “not entirely.” People actually entertain this notion?

    Yes, indeed they do!  They even serve it dinner and let it sleep over sometimes.  I don’t get it myself.  I think it’s Philadelphia-snob propaganda.  Then again, there is this, brought to my attention by one Mr. Stormcrow.

    Posted by Michael  on  06/10  at  04:50 PM
  51. 47, 48: See, there’s this certain ridge that runs through central Pa. ...

    And Pop/Soda says “not East”. Ignoring the St. Louis and Milwaukee anomalies.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  04:51 PM
  52. Aargh, pwned by my own devices.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  04:53 PM
  53. See, there’s this certain ridge that runs through central Pa. ...

    That’s your argument?  You have got to be kidding.

    And Pop/Soda says “not East”. Ignoring the St. Louis and Milwaukee anomalies.

    Okay, with those caveats, that’s a little better.  I will inform upstate NY’ers that the Midwest begins just west of Syracuse.  [INSERT COMICALLY-EXAGGERATED EYEROLL HERE] The soft drink thing seems to do a slightly better job of approximating the Mason-Dixon Line, as Pynchon has already noted*.

    Naturally, this reminds me of a couple of anecdotes**.  A colleague of mine, upon informing an upstater that he was from Iowa, received the sniffy reply, “Out here, we pronounce it Ohio.” I myself had another colleague from western PA who admitted he couldn’t keep track of which of “those ‘I’ states” was which.  So I would suggest that one is not in the Midwest unless one has at least superficial awareness of other Midwest states.  YMMV.  TGIW.

    *Hey, I’m sure it was in there somewhere.

    **I believe I already alluded to Dick Caveat above.

    Posted by  on  06/10  at  07:07 PM
  54. @ 49: Oaktown Girl, yes, you’re completely right. Just (ahem, more) evidence I’m wrapped up in my own little world. I mean, if *I’ve* seen the Hand of God and Maybe Teh Greatest Goal Evar goals a hundred times and so don’t need to give a link, that means *everyone* has too, right? Sorry!

    Captcha, and once again I am not making this up, “else” as in “everyone ... but me”

    Posted by John Protevi  on  06/11  at  09:29 AM
  55. Two nights in a Penn State dorm? COngratulations Jamie! (It’s equivalent to a week anywhere else...)

    Posted by  on  06/11  at  11:01 AM
  56. Two nights in a Penn State dorm? COngratulations Jamie! (It’s equivalent to a week anywhere else...)

    Ain’t it the truth? I was an RA at Penn State for mumble mumble years. The most memorable student “prank” was when someone brought the upright piano from the ground floor lounge up to the 7th floor, sent the elevator down to the basement, opened the shaft doors, and there went the piano hurled headlong flaming from th’ ethereal sky, with hideous ruin and combustion down to bottomless perdition—or something like that.

    Posted by John Protevi  on  06/11  at  11:22 AM
  57. Protevi - I warmly accept your sincere and heartfelt apology.

    Seriously though, the reason I asked for the link is because I was confused about what you had written up in #32 and was searching YouTube for “Diego Maradona 1990 World Cup semifinals”. I must be stupid or maybe I did not follow the chain of asterisks closely enough. If I was more of a soccer geek, I’m sure I would have understood you perfectly.

    Posted by  on  06/11  at  03:03 PM
  58. Sorry, it’s actually doubly my fault. If I were more of a soccer geek, I’d have put down the correct reference: the Hand of God and Maybe the Greatest Goal Evar occured in the 1986 WC quarterfinals!

    Posted by John Protevi  on  06/11  at  03:14 PM
  59. But how did she get through the Expression Engine 5.0 Spousal Filter????

    I’m truly sorry, Michael. I was upgrading it at that very moment.

    (Confidential to Janet: The ackdoorbay should now orkway, thank you for the generous eckchay.)

    Posted by Chris Clarke  on  06/11  at  04:55 PM
  60. Anksthay, ischray!  andway atwhat ethay uckfay areway ouyay ellingtay ymay yfway outabway isthay “ackdoorbay”?  Iway earhay ouyreay away ootchiehay ootchiecay anmay—erybodyevay aysay ouyay areway.  On’tday akemay emay eakbray outway ethay igpay atinlay isembowelizerday.

    Posted by  on  06/12  at  01:27 AM

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