Jason's Untimely Thoughts

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Archive for October, 2009

Mileys of Observation

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I took Jack, Adelaide, and a friend of hers to the Miley Cyrus concert last night in St. Louis.  The kids had been extremely excited about it for a few weeks now.  Jack wasn’t originally going to go, but after Adelaide exhausted invitations to all her friends that we thought might be able to go, she finally relented and asked him.

My mom rode from Columbia to St. Louis with us, she’d stayed in Columbia after the football game to watch Adelaide who had been sick.  We turned on the “Miley drive” songlist from my phone and the kids sang and played all the way to St. Louis.  We did hear a few times, thought, that the drive wasn’t as fun as they thought it would be.

At the concert, we were early so got in easily.  Grabbed some souvenirs, with the mighty assistance of a credit card, then went to our seats in Section 314.  Up high, but 2nd row, not too bad.  Went to the nearest concession stand where we came away with 4 cheeseburgers, 3 lemonades, and a large Pepsi, again with the mighty assistance of a credit card.  Returned to our seats in 314 and ate, only spilling a couple of the drinks in the process.

A few minutes after finishing, a friend at the show texted wondering where we were sitting.  I told her, but for some reason grabbed the tickets out of my pocket again.  Oops, we were supposed to be in 317, not 314, the altitude must have impacted my reading comprehension.  So, packed up and moved to 317, sorry about the spilled Pepsi and lemonade, whoever came next!

We had a minute-by-minute countdown to 7:00, when the show was supposed to start.  After the (awful awful awful) opening band, everyone headed to the bathroom.  Um, there are a lot of females at this show, the line is stretching out forever, I can’t help them much, and Jack might be close to having an accident.   The girls insist they’re fine, some nice lady offers to keep an eye on them as the line moves, so off Jack and I go.  About 10 minutes later, the girls finally emerge ready for Miley.

I’m sure the kids all thought Miley was excellent… they sang, danced, sang, danced, yelled, sang, and danced.  All in all, it was a fine show.

My thoughts, however, drifted…..

  • Some moms clearly bought tickets and brought their kids just so they could get all dressed up and sing to Miley themselves.  Clearly.
  • Some dads weren’t aware that dancing with the crowd of 10-12 year old girls, even if one of them is your daughter, looks creepy.
  • Miley either needs to wear longer clothes, stand farther from the edge of the stage, hire considerably taller cameramen, or all three.

The kids really did have a great time, but Sarah should have been there too, was mostly where my mind drifted.

After the show, we go back out to the van, I’m extremely impressed at how quickly we’re getting out of there.  Load everyone up, lean their seats back so they can go to sleep, pull out of there at about 9:30.  I go through a stop sign, no problem.  I go through the next stop light, turn left, hit the accelerator, hear a THUMP, from the back of the van.  Followed by “Dad, I fell over” in a surprisingly calm voice.

I finish the turn, look in the mirror, don’t really see Jack anywhere.  I pull over immediately, look back, he’s laid back like an astronaut prepared for takeoff, still buckled into his carseat into the main seat, like it’s no big deal.  The girls start to laugh immediately.  Instead of leaning his seat back, evidently I initially unlatched, so the seat could flip over.  Could, and in fact, did.   We laughed as hard as we could without making him think we were laughing at him.  A quick fix, back on the road, all three kids asleep by 9:45.

It was a good time.  Much thanks to the grandparents for thinking of and buying the tickets.

Written by Jason Becking

October 29th, 2009 at 3:45 pm

Clap Clap Boom Boom, Tigers Beat the Longhorns Soon

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Happy Homecoming, Tiger fans.  Father weather and mother nature have provided the required ingredients — a slight chill, pretty falling leaves, and rain, to accompany the other traditional homecoming happenings at Ol’ Mizzou.  Mizzou hosts the Longhorns from the University of Texas Saturday night, kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. to be broadcast on ABC.

Unless the monsoon picks back up on Saturday, I’d expect to be at the tailgate by 1:00 or so.  We have a variety of food coming — CJ’s wings, SEMO ribs, and Smitty meat — plus other things I’m sure, I wouldn’t expect much of that to be there until 4:00 or after.  Look forward to seeing the crowd of coming-homers.

After two losses that should have been wins, the Tigers will depart Faurot Field Saturday evening with a victory that was unexpected, even by both of the optimistic MU football fans.  This will also be payback for the drubbing the Tigers received in Austin last year and another Big 12 North title will still be in the works.

My memories {clap} of that drubbing {clap} heavily involve {clap} a UT fan that {clap} sat in the visitors section {clap} with us last year {clap} in Austin.  As UT was {clap} scoring like crazy {clap} throughout the early {clap} part of the game, {clap} she clapped {clap} at a rhythm of about {clap} 40 claps per minute.  {clap} Even better, she {clap} was doing so {clap} directly in the {clap} left ear of one {clap} of our friends.  For the entire {clap} first quarter, {clap} at least, {clap} maybe the first {clap} half {clap}.  She was old, she and her Mizzou companions were otherwise certainly polite, we were in shock from one in our group’s stairwell-induced broken wrist, we were getting trounced, and she was old, so we left her alone.

Sometime long, long after it was clear there would be no Mizzou victory, a penalty was called on one of the Texas lineman.  I politely pointed out that he was a cheater.  Not just me, the referee was good enough to tell everyone in attendance, and also the national television audience, that this kid had broken the rules of the game.  Clearly, a cheater.  CHEATER!  #75 is a cheater!  (maybe not #75, but that’s what I seem to remember.)

The old lady UT fan tapped me on my shoulder 2 plays later.  “You know, sometimes, I wish I was a man,” she said.  Um, OK, I replied, to the crazy old clap lady.  “Cause, you know, if I was a man, I might say some mean things like you just said.”   I did my best to go back to leaving her alone, while she wasn’t as interested in leaving me alone.  I eventually had to actually use the words “I’m done talking to you” to try to get her to leave me alone.  Her {clap} rhythmic clapping {clap} (and all the booze) did {clap} dull my senses {clap}, though, to where I was {BOOM} perfectly able to sleep {BOOM} in our rented apartment {BOOM} on 6th Street {BOOM}.  Above {BOOM} one of {BOOM} 17 dance clubs {BOOM} on that block {BOOM} {BOOM} that {BOOM} {BOOM} {BOOM} all {BOOM} {BOOM} stayed open {BOOM} {BOOM} until 3:00 {BOOM} {BOOM} {BOOM} {BOOM} {BOOM} {BOOM}.  Beat UT, screw ku.

Written by Jason Becking

October 22nd, 2009 at 3:22 pm

Do You Chew on Lemons?

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So I’m at the dentist earlier this week and after the obligatory football talk, the first words my dentist says to me are “Do you chew on lemons?”  “No,” I replied, “what an odd way to start a conversation.  Do you ask everyone that?”  Why not “Do you put small bits of barbed wire in your underwear?” or “Are you still hitting young children with your car?”  I didn’t really offer those suggestions, but odd, no?

You know how awful it is when dentists or their assistants ask you questions while they have their hands stuck in your mouth?  Yes or no questions are annoying, but when they ask some open-ended nonsense, makes me question my judgment on why I’m allowing them anywhere near me with those whine-making tools.  How much more annoying do you think it’d be if they started asking questions about your spouse’s death?  If you answered 100 times more annoying, you’re not even close.  After the initial shock, it was fine, but wowsers.  (And if you’re reading this, dental assistant, I’m not mad or anything, they were simple, honest questions, it just shocked me initially.)

I’ve had a couple of reminders recently about people reading the blog.  I also occasionally still go back and re-read both the junk I’ve written and the many messages I’ve received.  Although it can be painful, it is healing in some weird way as well.  Oddly, some of the healing, I think, comes from the renewed pain. Like breaking through the scar tissue, maybe.  Or some other medical analogy that might be better suited.

I’m way way way not into anything medical related, which makes the health insurance reform yelling awesome.  Think the vast majority of those yelling have never lived through a major medical situation, with or without good insurance, so should shut up.  Go talk to those that have, talk to the doctors and nurses.  And by all means they should quit yelling.

We’re 2/3 of the way through our flu shots.  Adelaide had hers yesterday, mine was today, Jack’s will be on Tuesday.  Our physician’s office chose not to offer the H1N1 vaccination, which made me happy.  I was leaning against having them done anyway, everyone that worked in that office was also not having them done, so was a happy circumstance for me.

On cemetery news, Sarah’s monument should be set sometime in the next few weeks.  The foundation work has been done, now it’s just a matter of the company from Memphis finding a day or two to come up and complete the installation.  Not sure how I feel about that, except that I’ll be glad to not be dealing with it anymore.  Even before it’s set, I know there are a few details I’d change, but don’t think any of it matters a great deal (and wouldn’t to Sarah).

I seem to have several offers to go to tomorrow night’s game at Ok State, which I’m refusing thus far.  The drive and passing off of the kids have me hesitating.  We are going to Colorado for that game.  Well, I’m going to the game, the kids are going to Colorado for the trick-or-treating.

Finally, after earlier stories of the beaker football and basketball teams hating each other, we now have a story of the beaker football team and fans hating each other.  Hey beakers, go chew on lemons.

p.s.  Everyone should go watch this video of the landthieves’ fans embarrassing themselves.

Written by Jason Becking

October 16th, 2009 at 3:23 pm

Posted in Mindless Ramblings

Expectations Switch, Pound Nebraska

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Happy beat Nebraska week, Tiger fans.  MU hosts the Corn on Thursday, kick off is scheduled for 8:01 p.m. on ESPN.  Yes, really, 8:01 p.m.  Bryan Ninichuck and Todd Bennington of Wingate Pest Control fame will be handling the tailgate food, much thanks to them, call Wingate for all your pest control needs.  Roads around the stadium will be extremely chaotic, but will be shooting to be at the tailgate by 5:00 p.m.  A few will almost certainly be there before that.

Now a walk down memory lane…

The year was 2000, three of us went up to Lincoln for the Tigers game against Nebraska, my first visit to their Memorial Stadium.  Prior to this, my experience with Nebraska fans was mostly at CJ’s, where they were nice, much-fun, old people, maybe a little overweight.   We learned quickly that you couldn’t stand up for long, as the “maybe a little overweight” was an understatement and there literally wasn’t enough room for everyone to sit.  It was like musical chairs every time there was a good play, last one standing had to stay that way.

As for the game, Sarah was taking photos while Rib and I were in the stands for what was a relatively exciting game (Kirk Farmer broke his collar bone game). Afterwards, as the Nebraska fans strolled quietly out of the stadium, I asked a group of them what the deal was.  They’d just won a football game, for the love of God, but were acting like they were leaving the theatre after watching Schindler’s List.  Winning’s just not that big of a deal, was the reply.  “We expect to win these games” and just didn’t like the way they looked doing it.  Wow, I thought, what a bunch of arrogant, no-fun, old people.  Maybe a little overweight.

Fast-forward to 2003, some kid named Brad Smith led the Tigers to a 41-24 victory.  Sarah was in a plane taking photos beforehand and the early part of the game, she then lugged all her gear from Reactor Field to the press box in the rain to hustle down and take game photos.  My parents, Adelaide, and I sat in the press box.  A shocking 28-point 4th quarter broke open the game for the Tigers… I can still clearly remember the smell of the evergreen bushes being trampled by the students and fans as they rushed the field from the hill.  After the game we hung out for a long long time, celebrating the victory.  We went home, started to settle in, only to have the replay of the game come back on TBS at about 2:00 a.m.  Sarah & I sat there and watched it all again, both of us giddy at the entire thing.

Now to 2008, back in Lincoln, I walked out of the stadium in front of a couple of 28-ish year olds who were voicing their displeasure.  On and on and on and on and on and on and on and on about how they were used to winning and how “all these Missouri fans just don’t realize that we’re not used to watching us get beat this badly.  We just have never seen us get beat that badly.”  I politely pointed out that they should be used to it by now, as we’d beaten them almost exactly that badly the year before too.

This is the 11th consecutive MU-Nebraska game I’ve attended (1999-2009) and my 15th or so overall.  During that span, the contest has evolved from Missouri fans generally being happy not watching a blow-out, to closely contested games (kicked ball and I still think MU wins the game in Lincoln if Farmer doesn’t break a bone), to beating Nebraska 52-17 and 41-6 the past two years.  Blaine Gabbert was in the 6th grade or something the last time Nebraska managed to win in Columbia.  The last time their coach was in Columbia, Sarah took a picture of him precisely because he looked so ridiculous yelling at the referees.

Look how ridiculous he looks!

Look how ridiculous he looks!

I don’t think MU will blow out Nebraska this time, but I do think next year’s team will be full of Tigers who are undefeated against the boys from Nowledge.  41-24 seems like another good score in this contest to me.

The Team of the 90s, The Big Red Machine from Lincoln, Nebraska…. Have fun with those memories, Corn.  The oddsmakers have installed the Nubs as slight favorites in this game.  Of course they also picked ILL to beat MU.    Here’s a video that shows the early part of the Mizzou > Nebraska evolution  (kicked-ball warning) http://www.rockmnation.com/2009/5/22/883591/zoudave-feels-it-coming-in-the-air

p.s.  Note how I didn’t mention the fat lady running over all out of breath to clap in my face and tell me we’d done a good job, they’d lost plenty of times too, in 2004 as I’m leaving their stadium, trying to make my way down the stairs around her; the dope Husker player who punched one of our fans in 2003; or the myriad of arrestees who littered Nub rosters over their good years while Coach Pinkel continues to stock the roster with top quality kids and beat Nebraska.

on a side note, screw ku.

Written by Jason Becking

October 5th, 2009 at 2:26 pm

Hear the Roar!

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After the 2007 Mizzou football season, Sarah was approached by a gentleman named Darin Wernig, who was hoping to write a book about the season.  It all came together, eventually including both the 2007 and 2008 seasons, with Sarah’s photography featured throughout the 2007 portion of the book and on the cover.

The book will be for sale soon via the University of Missouri press.  I received our copy in the mail this week.  Below is the front cover, back cover, and a nice mention of Sarah that appears early in the book.

Hear the Roar! front cover

Hear the Roar! front cover

Hear the Roar! back cover

Hear the Roar! back cover

Hear the Roar! interior page

Hear the Roar! interior page

Written by Jason Becking

October 2nd, 2009 at 11:32 am

Post-Reunion Musings

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Beat nebraska.

We spent last weekend in Malden where we had a small birthday party for Adelaide on Friday night and then had my 20th high school reunion activities on Saturday.  A group of 20 or so stopped by the house Saturday afternoon, which was a nice way to ease in to the reunion.  The kids, myself, and a few others did a little swimming while most everyone else sat around chatting.  It was fun.  Many in the group had a, um, long night on Friday night, so their movement was fairly slow Saturday afternoon.

The main part of the reunion was Saturday night.  Dinner for 50-60, I’d guess, with another 20-30 people showing up as the night went on.  Some from our class, some from other classes, but it was good to see everyone.

All in attendance seemed to be doing very well and overall to have not changed too much since the late 1980s.  Despite the fluctuations in weight, hair, and overall attractiveness, it was good to see that everyone was basically the same.  I don’t believe there were more than 5 people there that I’d seen at all in the past 10 years.  For everyone else, it had probably been closer to 15-20 years since I’d seen them.  Obviously, just superficial catching up, but still lots of laughs.  Although there were very few people in that room that I talk with regularly (or even annually pre-facebook), still a lot of good friends and good memories.

I appreciate all who attended, the chance to see everyone, and Darla and others who organized the event.

For unknown reasons, lots of people there thought one or more of the following:

  • I worked for Mizzou
  • I was the biggest Mizzou fan they knew
  • I was maybe a preacher
  • I was too old to be drinking Budweiser (or that Budweiser was generally bad for you)
  • If someone yells M-I-Z, I will automatically respond Z-O-U  *

Most of those things are false, although Sunday offered plenty of proof in favor of the Budweiser bullet point.  As we were leaving, though, several were closing out their $80-ish bar tabs, which were mostly made up of $2.25 beers, so I’m guessing their light beer leanings didn’t help their argument much on Sunday either.  (*This one is clearly false.  I almost never respond Z-O-U unless inside the stadium, with dozens/hundreds/thousands also responding.  “Go Tigers” is much more typically my response in one-on-one settings.)

beat nebraska.  On a side note, screw ku.

Written by Jason Becking

October 1st, 2009 at 8:11 pm

Posted in Mindless Ramblings