The Square Peg - Fumbles, Foibles and Foofaraws!
© S. Bradley Stoner
South-central Texas is grudgingly admitting that we have passed the autumnal equinox... and yes, we south-central Texans actually know what that is, and how to pronounce it, despite what some of you Yankees might think. As a friend of mine used to say... “us’ns is edjumacated!” That was uttered with tongue in cheek, y’all, so don’t go getting all uppity!
Anyway, we know that summer has passed and that means it’s now fall... somewhere. Not here. Here, as I mentioned last time, it’s second spring. NEVER-THE-LESS, this time of year means a whole lot to Texans. Let’s see in September, there’s Diez y Seis (Mexican Independence Day), FotoSeptiembre USA, Jazz’SAlive, Six Flags Fright Fest, and the onset of NFL Football. As most of you know, or at least should know, Texas is synonymous with football. It starts with Pop Warner, gains momentum with High School, and goes absolutely nuts with Pro Football. Heck, San Antonio has even tried to entice the Saints and the Raiders. As the seventh largest city in the country, San Antonians feel they deserve a Pro team. It would give us something else to celebrate at all the October Beer fests. Yep... October is unofficially “drunk month” down here. But, I digress. Let’s get back to September and football.
I won’t say Texans are rabid fans. I mean we don’t generally get into fist fights when other team’s fans show up... unless it’s the KC Chiefs, and they start it. We are loyal fans, but since a lot of our population comes from elsewhere, having wound up here at one time or another during military service and decided this was the place to retire, our loyalties are somewhat divided. One thing San Antonians (most of them) have in common is that we aren’t Cowboy fans. Nope... we make fun of Jerry Jones and Tony Romo, at least when he plays, which isn’t often because he keeps getting injured. We all wish we could get paid as much as he does for being off work as much as he is. Except for the steel pins and pain, that’s a pretty easy way to make a living.
Almost all of us like the Houston Texans and delight in seeing Watt, Clowney, McKinney, and Mercilus terrorize opposing quarterbacks. Who wouldn’t? They’re almost as good as my Broncos... almost. Whenever I say this, I have to back up a couple of steps to avoid the wrath of the one avid Patriot and one rabid Panther fan in our neighborhood. They’re still smarting over last year. They’re going to get even this year. I told the Patriot fan the Broncos were going to let the air out of their football... so Brady could get a better grip. It’s a good thing the Patriot fan is smaller than me. He just huffed and stomped off. The Panthers fan didn’t say anything... the Broncs already whupped them this year. I’m just glad we don’t have any Bengals fans. Apparently Texans, even the ones that came from Ohio, just don’t like Cincinnati... or Cleveland for that matter. Heck we didn’t even pay much attention to the Browns even when Manziel played there and he lived just up I-10 in Kerrville.
Okay, all of this was a rambling prelude to what I really intended to write about today. While we Texans are politely passionate about our football (raise your hand if you believe that), there are some things about the game that will just spark a foofaraw. That’s right, I said it... FOOFARAW! I could have said “tempest in a teapot,” but that’s just trite and isn’t nearly as cool as saying “foofaraw.” And I want to be cool. Who doesn’t? So what was this dust up about? Was it about the fantasy football lineup? The injury roster? The stupid new rules? Nope. While any one of those could incite a legitimate debate, none would fall into the foofaraw category. What does fall into that category is the Sunday Night Football song. I found that out this morning.
There was a small crowd gathered in front of Bingo Bob’s house. I noticed it because of its unusual composition. It was about evenly split between male and female, and it was pretty obvious the genders had squared off against each other. Naturally, I thought, ‘Uh oh, this is about some sexist remark Bob made.’ Wrong.
Bob was getting loud. “I’m tellin’ ya, it’s ruined Sunday Night Football... that prancing princess of puntdom changing the song that way. Who does she think she is?”
Paula Pettingzoo matched him volume for volume. “She’s an artist, you buffoon! She’s innovative... vivacious... and talented!”
“Yeah,” Patti Peeksalot sputtered. Patti isn’t much for original thought, but she’s a great supporter.
“You don’t even watch football,” Duncan snorted. “I doubt you’ve even seen it.”
“Have too,” Patti pouted, but they all knew it wasn’t true.
“What? In the commercials?” Frank asked.
“Who asked you?” Gail Greenup shot at him.
“Oh go recycle something,” Frank shot back.
“Hey, that was uncalled for,” Twyla Twaddle whined.
“Ah,” Bob droned in his best and most sarcastic basso profundo, “the terrible trio of testimonials has spoken.”
“That was unkind,” Hillary Hardbody interjected and added, “I kind of like the new song too.”
Now Charlie, who knows as much about football as the geckos on my porch wall, piped up with, “Like you watch sports.” He couldn’t even bring himself to say ‘football.’
Hillary was indignant, and I don’t blame her. “I watch sports,” she spat. “I’m a big athletic supporter!”
That was too much for Bob. He looked her up and down approvingly and said, “Don’t I wish!”
The next thing everybody heard was Bob’s pained shriek as his wife dragged him inside by his ear. That pretty much ended the curbside meeting.
As it broke up and folks began drifting away, Duncan looked at me and said, “I didn’t hear anything from you... Well? What do you have to say for yourself?”
“I think it’s time for lunch,” I replied and headed home.