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The Wet Ball Drill

For Our Monday Blog, I again start with a picture to just get us going. It could be a leadership theme…right? Plus Uncle D reminded me that I have been posting a lot of dog pictures lately. So the streak continues!

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As a lead-in to the blog, I reference a line from the poem written by Samuel Coleridge in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, (Wikipedia) He wrote about the men on the ship, after the Mariner had shot the albatross that was going to lead the ship out of danger, as it headed toward Antarctic waters.

They had a plan and expectation to survive, because of the albatross. Then, that plan was gone. One-by-one the men on the ship began to die. The poem describes the ship as “Corpses man the ship; dead men pull the oars; dead men hoist the sails; dead men steer the vessel”.

They had no plan. They had no purpose.

Without getting too crazy into the analysis of the poem (you can read the poem and the analysis in the attachments) that was published in 1798, I only borrow from it to make a point. The blog today is about a picture that I see, as I sit in my study at home:

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Above the picture is a framed poster that summarizes the football season of the Indianapolis Colts. That year, on February 4, 2007, they won Super Bowl XLI by beating the Chicago Bears 29-17.

The weather report for that game in Miami was indicating a probability of constant steady rain. As part of that season’s preparation, Peyton Manning and his center, Jeff Saturday, would practice the wet ball drill. Saturday didn’t like it very much because he always ended up soaked by the time that practice had ended.

The Colts managers  would soak several balls in water to make them a bit soggy. That way, the practice exchange between center and quarterback prepared them for rainy games.

The morning of the Super Bowl, Manning woke up knowing that their rainy day preparation, with the wet ball drill, was going to be important.

During the game, there were six fumbles between the two teams. But, Saturday and Manning had no problem from center to quarterback. They followed their preparation.

I remember the excitement I felt when the Colts won that Superbowl. I also remember how proud I felt, when I saw the picture of the Colts, all huddled in prayer. It’s what I see in my study.

It’s going to be a great Monday! And speaking of planning… our pic o’day:

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The Kobe Lesson

The Sunday night NFL football game has the New England Patriots traveling to Indianapolis to play the Colts. It’s popular to pick the Patriots to win because people  (and I mean “people” as in ESPN  “every second Patriots Network”) say that Tom Brady with his three Super Bowl rings, is the golden boy and will lead the Patriots to victory.

If you are a Patriots fan, you recall the glory days of their three Super Bowl victories. You realize that they have won 5 straight games.

If you aren’t a Patriots fan, then you recall that they got caught cheating for all three of those Super Bowl win years; that the NFL destroyed the cheating tapes before the public could see how much they cheated, and that you notice that no one ever talks about the cheating or that the Patriots have not won a Super Bowl without cheating.

In fact, you also pick the Colts to win on Sunday night because, since 2009 Brady is 3-11 on the road against teams with a winning record. What do you think? Do I sound like a Patriots fan? It’s how you look at it.

I admit it, I just enjoyed writing those last paragraphs. But, I realize that this is not a football pick em column. Instead, I want to segue from the Patriot success/failure thinking to NBA basketball and Kobe Bryant .

This past week, Kobe Bryant just set the NBA record for most missed field goals (shots) in a career. He passed former Boston Celtic great John Havlicek.

Now, it’s real easy to focus on all those misses. Or, to focus on what it also might mean. To focus on the negative would be to think that he just shoots too much or that he sure did miss a lot.

If you are looking for the positive for Kobe, then it means that he is not afraid of failure. It also means that he has been able to play a long time. Just staying at it! And that his team has always counted on him to shoot. And you might also think that Kobe’s Los Angeles teams have won five NBA championships.

Have you ever heard someone say, “he is so lucky” or “I wish I could get those breaks”. Yes, it’s either thinking like that or thinking that life is a moveable feast.

And for pic o’ day, it’s real easy to feel like this by the end of the week!

I am done

Irsay Money

Even if you are only a casual NFL football fan, you probably have heard that Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay was arrested (Sports Illustrated) on March 16, after an Indianapolis police officer noticed his erratic and slow driving. According to the Indianapolis Star, after Irsay was stopped by the officer, he had trouble standing, his speech was slurred and he admitted to taking several medications.

I have attached the story for more details. However, one specific detail of the arrest has raised specific questions. According to the police report,  police found $29,029 in his vehicle which included,  $14,516 in a briefcase, $2,513 in Irsay’s wallet and $12,000 in one of two “laundry” bags on the passenger’s side floorboard.

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As a lifelong Colts’ fan, I was saddened by the news. I met Jim Irsay a few years ago and was left with a profound feeling that he is a very nice man. Also as a fan, I have always appreciated his actions as an owner.

Currently, Mr. Irsay is in a care facility undergoing inpatient treatment. So, no one knows why he was carrying that much cash. Fans have speculated. From Stampede Blue, one writer guessed the following with tongue in cheek:

1) The Highlander wasn’t enough trade in equity for the downpayment on a Mercedes S600 AMG.

2) His clothing launderer messed his order up and gave him a bag from the money laundry.

3) He was answering a Craiglist ad for a full collection of Affliction shirts. Cash only.

4) He was on his way home after losing the silent bid auction for the flute from the Marshall Tucker Band.

5) He was still picking up the $100 dollar bill breadcrumb trail he left behind to help him find his way home.

6) You never know when the tamale guy will magically appear at Kroger.

     Because I am known to be a rabid fan, I have been asked why he was carrying this much cash. Maybe because he is a billionaire, it didn’t seem like that much cash to him as it does to the rest of us. That’s my hope. For now, we can only look on the bright side; hope and pray that he recovers, and look forward to the day that he returns to his chair as active owner. The words of a true fan!

DID YOU KNOW that there are 158 verses in the Greek National Anthem? Seems like a long time to stand during a song!

And for pic o’ daY:

new rug

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