If you are a college basketball fan, this is a wonderful time of year. Most of the conferences, large and small, are playing their tournaments. In conferences where the tournament champion gets the automatic bid to the NCAA tournament, winning the tournament is their only chance to make The Big Dance, and the players play their hearts out. Already we have seen upsets, like Marquette defeating Villanova and Georgetown upending Syracuse.
For the Big Ten, today is a bit of a “play in” day, where the top seeds have a bye and the second division teams face off for the ability to advance. Ohio State starts its tournament play tomorrow with a noon game against Michigan, which beat Iowa today.
Tournament games often have a desperate edge, where the interests of the two teams are radically different. For a team like the Buckeyes, which has an NCAA bid locked up, the coaches’ main interest probably is avoiding injury — although I’m sure the players want to play well and go into the NCAA tournament on a bit of a roll. For Michigan, however, it is a one game season. They can make it to the NCAAs only if they beat Ohio State and win out, and as a result I’m sure the Wolverines will be playing with even more fire than normal tomorrow. The wild card in the game will be the bitter underlying rivalry between Ohio State and Michigan. No true Buckeye wants to lose to Michigan, ever, and if Ohio State’s players can drive a final stake into Michigan’s difficult season, I am sure they will be burning to do so.
On Wednesday, I climbed the Vulture Peak mountain near Wickenburg, Arizona, with Scott and his friend Sadie. I stupidly forgot to charge my camera’s battery before we went, so I had to take pictures with Scott’s Blackberry. That’s why these are a little grainy.
We climbed the flat peak in the middle of the picture below. On the way, we passed a 73-year-old man and his grandson who told us it wasn’t difficult until close to the top, where it gets really steep, and that it’s even harder coming back down. I pretty much agreed with his assessment. We know his age because he signed the guestbook at the top.
The temperature was in the low 50s but we started to feel hot as we climbed up. The temperatures in Arizona feel 10 degrees higher than they are because of how powerful the sun is.
Here Scott is at the top of the mountain. We could see the Arizona Cardinals stadium in Phoenix from here. We also had a cool view of a rain storm that hit Wickenburg while we were up there.
Sadie is signing the guestbook. There was an entry in there from a couple who said they “made love for the first time on the peak on Valentine’s Day.”
Here I am, wearing Scott’s hoodie.
Scott and Sadie, on the way down.
Yesterday Scott and I drove down the Carefree Highway (which inspired a Gordon Lightfoot song) to go hiking at Lake Pleasant Park near Phoenix. Here are the pictures I took there:
I read Richard’s blog about his friend Roland that was thrown out of the bar and I was happy to hear that his other friends agreed with bar management’s actions. For the most part individuals who work in the service industry are hard workers and at times don’t deserve the type of treatment they get.
Having worked for about nine months in a part-time job as host at a neighborhood restaurant (a job that I throughly enjoy by the way) I have had a few situations where you just wonder what some people have stuck up their butts. I usually just write it off to the person was having a bad day.
A while back a man and lady came in and we had a wait of forty five minutes to an hour for a table. I took the couples name and told them they would have to wait in the bar. A few minutes later the woman came up and said “take our name off of the list, we’re not going to wait that long, we’re going somewhere else”.
I said “I’m sorry to hear that” and she said “no your not”. Surprised by her response I said “yes I am because we have great food here and your going to miss out” ! She gave me an eye roll and said ” oh you younger people just don’t understand do you” and left in a huff. Hmmm …… what didn’t I understand ?
Another man and woman had been sitting at their table for awhile and the man had finished all of his food except for his baked potato. I asked the gentleman “may I take your plate ? ” and the woman blurted out in a loud voice “yes, take his plate, he is clearly finished can’t you see that” !
The same woman had only eaten half of her fish so I said “and if your finished would you like a to-go box for the rest of your fish ?” She said “why would I want a to-go box for my fish, I don’t even live in the City of Columbus” ! Hmmm …. sorry how was I to know you don’t live in Columbus ?
Don’t get me wrong I didn’t lose any sleep over these two incidents, but if these two people could have seen themselves from my point of view I wonder if they would have been embarassed ? Most people are friendly and polite and the one’s that aren’t are few and far between.
I don’t know if Richard’s friend Roland has ever worked in the service industry, but if he hasn’t a short stint doing so might give him a totally different perspective ! Just a thought !
I simply love the internet … while I was reading this article about a girl that wanted to take another girl to the prom in Mississippi the number of comments jumped from around 18,000 to around 25,000.
I enjoy scrolling through the comments to see what other people have to say about this issue. Honest debate is good, but I wish people would refrain from name calling as there isn’t a place for it.
Just my opinion, but I think the school board should have let the students decide. I wouldn’t have been surprised if the students would have said it doesn’t bother us at all ! I think that my nieces and nephews generation is much more tolerant than ours and that we are much more tolerant than our parents.
We are headed in the right direction, it’s just taking us awhile to get there.