Saturday, March 14, 2009

Storytellin, the Next Chapter

Ok... since TW wanted to hear another story, I'll go ahead and tell the tale of the football game.

Back when I was a senior in high school, we were poised to go to the state championships. Unfortunately in our conference, you had to go undefeated to go to state. One loss and that was the end of your season.

We started out the season strong by beating a local team that was actually in the class above us. We'd beat them pert near every year, so it wasn't that big of a deal. But we got cocky after that, and the next game was with another non-conference opponent. They whooped us 20-0, but it taught us a lesson and we never took another game for granted.

Throughout the season, we took care of every other team we faced, but so had another team. This team had actually beat us in the state championship game the previous year, and we had to play them on their turf. Add to that the game took place in late October when the grass on their field was about 6 inches tall and you could see your breath, and you've got the makings of an epic game.

And an epic game it was.

We'd get the ball and drive half of the field, then they'd stop us and we'd punt. They'd take the ball and drive for a while, then we'd stop them and they'd punt. There were a few turnovers thrown in for good measure. And then there was about 2 minutes left in the game...

The other team had the ball and were driving for the first score of the game.

Of course this is small town high school football, so we played both ways, and on kickoffs and returns. Seniors never left the field.

On this particular down, they threw a pass and their receiver caught the ball. I was the defensive end on that side of the field, and so I turned to watch the outcome as the ball sailed over my head. Our outside linebacker was out of position and all he could do was lunge at the receiver as he was falling to the ground. A touchdown to be certain. However... the receiver had double knotted his shoelaces and as the linebacker flopped to the ground he reached out his hand just as far as he could. Serendipity is a helluva player, and the loop of the receiver's shoelace flipped over the linebacker's outstretched index finger and snagged itself tripping the receiver immediately for a minimal gain.

The clock ran down to under a minute and our coach called timeout to give us all the advice he could. There was only one play left in the game.

Now our opponent ran the single wing offense. What that means is that the quarterback was always in the shotgun formation about 7 yards behind the center. The advantage to this is that the quarterback is removed from the chaos of the line and has a little more time to react. The disadvantage is that he has to catch the long snap.

Our defensive coach came into the huddle and pointed at two of my fellow seniors. "Ok... I want the two of you to line up on the center and bury him as he snaps the ball. Then I want you two linebackers to follow them right up the center and get that quarterback." He looked over at me and the other end and said, "You two ends don't let him get outside, let's take this thing into overtime and win it." The ref came over and told the coach it was time to go, and we all lined up for the final play in regulation.

You've all seen the movies where the football team lines up against each other, hands stained with grass, steam blowing out of each lineman's facemask like so many medieval dragons. It was just exactly like that, only dead silence. The only sound to break the silence was the sound of the quarterback.

"DOWN!"

Then... piercing the silence was the conversation between the two guys on my team lined up directly over the center. "Coach said we're supposed to shove this fucker's head out his asshole, right?"

"SET!!" the QB yelled back.

"That's what he said alright!" my buddy answered.

"HUT!!!" the QB screamed and threw his hands out to catch the football.

Now... I was a good 5 yards away from the conversation being had right over the center, and I heard everything perfectly. You can only imagine how well the center heard the same conversation. He snapped the ball as hard as he could and fell to the ground grabbing his helmet and curling up in a ball as he went trying to avoid the maiming to come. I came off the line in a sprint at the moment the ball was snapped, looking at the QB the whole time, and saw his eyes grow as big as saucers as the football was launched three feet over his head. He jumped to catch it, but it was gone, so he turned around and ran after the bouncing ball. I was one step behind him at this point, and gaining.

While I was running, a couple of thoughts were racing through my mind, do I go for the quarterback or the football. QB? Football? QB?? Football??? As the QB reached for the ball, I made up my mind. The QB was the only player between the football and the endzone, I had to take him out and let the chips fall where they would. His hands just started to touch the ball and I buried him. After the collision, I rolled over to try to find the ball and was able to see my friend, who was lined up over the center, pick the ball up and start running toward the goal line.

You see... once the center assumed the fetal position, there was nobody between him and us.

As I said earlier, the grass was about 6 inches tall and you couldn't see the yardlines, so my buddy ran clear through the endzone and into the parking lot, just to make sure.

There were 30 seconds left, and we kicked off deep and stopped them cold. We won, 7-0.

****************************

Today's mystery lyric: (Remember the rules folks, no online searching of the lyrics, if you don't know it, you don't have the answer!)

I thought that pain and truth were things that really mattered
But you can't stay here with every single hope you had shattered
I'm not expecting to grow flowers in a desert
But I can live and breathe
And see the sun in wintertime

Answer to last lyric: Tarzan Boy by Baltimora. Close, but no cigars.

57 Comments:

Blogger dani c said...

Love it !!! Awesome story and great post...
Now for my chat box ?
Miss ya !!!!!

3/15/2009 1:21 PM  
Blogger Deb said...

Lean to the left!
Lean to the right!
Stand up! Sit Down!
Fight! Fight! Fight!

I have no idea what that means, but it sounded good when I was a Pee Wee cheerleader. Go Lions!

3/15/2009 8:00 PM  
Blogger LL said...

Danigirl - You missed me? Well take better aim next time. I'll ignore the chat box comment for now... ;)

Deb - You not only love ME, but you're a Lions fan? You're in far worse shape than I thought... :P

3/15/2009 9:50 PM  
Blogger Red said...

I just never figured you to be the type to play football in HS say nothing about being the one to save the game.

I missed you too! Tell me, I checked your blog late Sat nite and yesterday too, when did you release this post?

3/16/2009 7:24 AM  
Blogger LL said...

JennyLu - Why not? And I didn't save the game... just did my part. As for the timestamp... it says Saturday at 8:45 my time.

3/16/2009 6:46 PM  
Blogger fermicat said...

I love a good football story. Sounds like your high school was always competitive. My high school won five games in three years. Character building, my ass!

3/16/2009 8:01 PM  
Blogger LL said...

It was fermi. My coach was from Joeja... southern Joeja at that (big bulldog fan). He got here when I was in jr high, and in the six years I was there we lost a total of 7 games. 2 of those were in the state championship. My four years in HS we lost 5 of those games. He had moved back to Georgia a couple years after I graduated, and died last year from brain cancer. He was a lot of fun and I miss him. I'd tell you some of the jokes he told us... but I'd get banned from the internet. :P

3/16/2009 8:46 PM  
Blogger Charmaine said...

In high school I was what was called a "Tigerette". We were like the Rockets with white go-go boots. It's like being a cheerleader only better.

Many professional teams invited us to perform their half time show. Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, Buffalo Bills and such.

The point is, I was surrounded by football and can say, to this very day, never watched a play that did not put me into a coma.

This makes me a bad person. I know. But I've been on the field and recieved "the wave". I know what it feels to be down their as people cheer their brains out. And still...I was kinda bored.

I'm going to hell.

3/18/2009 9:41 AM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

Oy, football talk. My eyes glazed over...is it legal to "tackle" an opponent by untying his shoelaces?

3/18/2009 9:53 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

That was another great story, LL. No effin' idea on the lyric. As usual. Blargh.

3/18/2009 11:41 AM  
Blogger Train Wreck said...

Oh that was edge of your seat exciting. It would have made ESPN, highlights I am sure. Aw you told another story, just cause I said so? sheesh. Thamks for the ((Hug)) I needed it. Hard times.

3/18/2009 7:40 PM  
Blogger Charmaine said...

Hey old man,

Tell Train Wreck I can still not access her page. It's says I don't have permission...as if that has ever stopped me in my life.

3/18/2009 7:56 PM  
Blogger LL said...

Kath - *sigh*

Beth - Thank you... I'm wagering you've heard the song before.

TW - I know... I hate to give married women hugs like that, but... well... you looked like you could use one. ;)

Charm - So I've gone from "Handsome" to "old man" in one post? I'm not sure if going to hell is the punishment for not liking football, but it probably should be. :P Oh... and you definitely need to post a pic of you in those white go-go boots. You'd have all the fish bitin' then...

3/18/2009 9:20 PM  
Blogger Charmaine said...

What link? Mo fo?

It's geting late which means, I am losing my charm.

Not my love for you, just my charm.

3/19/2009 12:53 AM  
Blogger Tink said...

He ran clear to the parking lot! That's awesome. I always love your stories.

3/19/2009 8:21 AM  
Blogger LL said...

Now I've gone from old man to mo fo? Wow... I'm fading fast here... :P

TW is the Barefoot Contessa link on my sidebar. On the right... no... your other right... yeah... down just a little further... there you go. Click it and read to your heart's content.

3/19/2009 8:25 AM  
Blogger LL said...

Tink! When did you slip in here? Yeah... there was about 20 feet of grass behind the goal post and then a bunch of cars parked behind the grass. He didn't stop until he got to the cars.

3/19/2009 8:35 AM  
Blogger NYPinTA said...

I'm with Kathleen. *yawn*

3/19/2009 11:59 AM  
Blogger LL said...

P - That old guy lust must be effecting both of you quite badly. Good thing fermi seems to be immune...

3/19/2009 12:53 PM  
Blogger fermicat said...

What? No one told you that I am watching Castle?

And how many times do I have to tell you that vintage 1971 is not old?!?

3/19/2009 1:04 PM  
Blogger LL said...

You may be watching Castle, but you've not lost your love of football yet... just out of curiosity though... are you Irish by any chance?

3/19/2009 1:20 PM  
Blogger fermicat said...

Appreciation for football and Castle/Nathan Fillion are not mutually exclusive. And no, not a drop of Irish blood that I know about.

3/19/2009 1:54 PM  
Blogger Madre Farbot said...

I didn't understand half of your football speak, but was no less riveted than your opponent. LOL

3/19/2009 2:02 PM  
Blogger dani c said...

Where are you !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

3/19/2009 2:32 PM  
Blogger LL said...

fermi - Hmmmmmmm... the puzzle pieces are starting to fall together. Kath, P, and Charm are Irish and have no love for the king of all sports... I'm starting to develop a major hypothesis here.

Madre - Erm... just think of it as a rugby game where you can catch your breath.

danigirl - I'm right here!!!!!!!!!!!!! Where did you want me?

3/19/2009 3:38 PM  
Blogger BC said...

I miss football.

3/19/2009 3:47 PM  
Blogger fermicat said...

I'm Southern. That explains the football love. Picked it up from Dad, because he raised me right, and now I've got his season tickets.

I've been missing football, but Tech's spring practice starts on Monday. Spring scrimmage is right around the corner!

3/19/2009 4:08 PM  
Blogger LL said...

Hmmmm... so your hypothesis would be that all southerners love football. Not sure that one's gonna hold up under testing. ;)

3/19/2009 4:25 PM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

I'm from Detroit for heaven's sake...need I say more re: football?

3/20/2009 5:58 AM  
Blogger Thinkinfyou said...

How did you play football? I thought your moobs would have gotten in the way when you tried to run!?!

Hey,on another subject,are you not on Humorbloggers anymore?Or did you just remove me from your friends list?

3/20/2009 2:32 PM  
Blogger LL said...

Oh yes Kath... you see, Lions fans are true football fans. They have a hope and tenacity that the rest of us will never understand.

3/20/2009 2:33 PM  
Blogger LL said...

FU!!! Well... back then my moobs weren't quite so pronounced. :P

And no... I'm not over there anymore. I've been banned. I suppose that's why you're not my friend any longer. :P

3/20/2009 2:36 PM  
Blogger Thinkinfyou said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

3/20/2009 3:54 PM  
Blogger trinamick said...

That's the first time I've ever heard a football player admit he plays both ways. I've often had my suspicions.

We of the wise Irish blood have a healthy appreciation for hot Canadians. But we have better things to do with our time than watch football - for instance, watching Castle, instead.

3/20/2009 3:55 PM  
Blogger LL said...

Hmmmmm... four irish women, four football haters. My hypothesis is starting to grow legs here...

3/20/2009 7:49 PM  
Blogger Simplicity said...

"Coach said we're supposed to shove this fucker's head out his asshole, right?" made me laugh HARD! I've tried to leave this comment about 17 times...I'm trying again and it better take! (Since I'm cutting and pasting over and over eventually that will be a true statement!)

I KNOW that song. I'm humming it in my head, but can't think of the name.

Give me a few...days...I'll get it!

3/22/2009 4:23 PM  
Blogger Simplicity said...

Is it Expose?

No, this is you...

Hold on...

Still thinking...

3/22/2009 4:29 PM  
Blogger Simplicity said...

In a Big Country dreams stay with you like a lover's voice on the mountainside!

I got one!!Big Country of course!

3/22/2009 4:35 PM  
Blogger Charmaine said...

Please tell Train Wreck that I am prohibited from accesing her blog.

I did something wrong. Like use the F word.

3/22/2009 9:15 PM  
Blogger Red said...

Hey LL, got to finish the night being productive too, so I came by to do this to you:

PPPPbbblllBBBthhhhhhhhhhh :P

3/22/2009 10:18 PM  
Blogger Train Wreck said...

No F word banning on my blog! Thanks for tryin to help Char on the link thingy? Not sure what is going on?? I don't ban people for words. I have been known to have a few choice words myself. I know I can see the shocked, mouth dropped, look on your face now. It's true, I have a mean streak. Who Knew? Thanks friend.

3/23/2009 2:01 PM  
Blogger dani c said...

I still can't find you !!!!!

3/23/2009 5:12 PM  
Blogger LL said...

Simp - very good. Big Country it is.

Charm - Ok. TW! No matter how hard she tries, your blog is still without Charm.

TW - We know... we all know. Oh, see previous response too.

Danigirl - Well check your email then!

3/23/2009 6:40 PM  
Blogger mr. schprock said...

Hell of a story, LL. I wish I had a football story like that one. Because you beat that team, did you wind up go state that year?

3/24/2009 9:16 AM  
Blogger LL said...

Yes we did Mr. S. We went to state and got our hats handed to us badly. It was because of that game that the mercy rule was put into effect here in the state.

3/24/2009 3:14 PM  
Blogger The W.O.W. factor! said...

Wow...LL! Cow Tales to Ball Fables! Guess you can tackle them both pretty darned well!
Been outta touch and was surprised to see the cross over, but you are entitled....I guess! :}

3/24/2009 7:06 PM  
Blogger LL said...

Whaddya mean "you guess"? WhyIotta... ;)

Well WOWie... my life's experiences have been wide and varied. If only I could tell you all of the tales, but some things errr... most things remain in the vault, not to be spread around the internetz...

3/24/2009 7:24 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

Just came to check out a new post and big surprise .. there isn't one. Haha

3/25/2009 10:04 AM  
Blogger The Hussy Housewife said...

What has been shaking?
Where ya been?

Mormons finally got ya?

3/25/2009 3:51 PM  
Blogger NYPinTA said...

You were banned from someplace on the net? Wow. Shocking.

3/27/2009 11:29 PM  
Blogger LL said...

Beth - whyIotta...

Hussy - Hussy! Good to see ya. I didn't think your kind made it around these parts. Something about you having too many drugs to wash down with bourbon or some such...

Fortunately, I'm still a heathen.

P - I know! Who would possibly want to ban little ol' charming me?

3/30/2009 12:54 PM  
Blogger tiff said...

OK - without reading any of the comments, I have to say this:

Pictures, or it didn't happen.

3/30/2009 5:33 PM  
Blogger LL said...

How the hell could I take pictures? I was a little preoccupied...

3/30/2009 6:57 PM  
Blogger The W.O.W. factor! said...

WEll...quite possibly because my "guts" are all over this internet, no holds barred...some, in all reality, are your doings!
See how you are!
So unvault those "treasures"
... never know how priceless they may turn out to be if you don't expose them.
You may pass through life as a 'poor man'...for not.
that would be a shame. wink

3/31/2009 12:14 AM  
Blogger LL said...

I think I'll keep the books closed WOWie... for now... ;)

3/31/2009 9:07 AM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

My sister loves football...and she's pretty much Irish. She, however, does not share a love for Nathan Fillion (or Firefly/Serenity).

Work that into your theory.

3/31/2009 7:04 PM  
Blogger LL said...

The exception that proves the rule. :ewink:

3/31/2009 7:56 PM  

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