Tag Archives: Northwest Rankin

Renaming professional sports teams

While Northwest Rankin High School—from whence I graduated—was being built, I was among a lucky select number of high school students who were picked to help determine the high school colors and mascot for the future school. So much time has passed that I honestly don’t remember how influential my fellow students (of whom I can only remember three. There may have been more, but I only remember the three…possibly because they are female) and I were. I do remember we did not want to be anything similar to Pearl or Brandon (the schools from which most of the students for NWR would be drawn) and we didn’t want to be like Ole Miss or MSU. Those in the area know, of course, that we went with a Cougar and with Southern Miss colors.

All that is said to say I think it would be more interesting if professional athletic teams were to choose their mascots reflective of town history or even town (regional) personality. I realize there is a tiny instance of that now, but barely so much as to be noticeable. Therefore, I’d like to propose the following new names to be more representative of the communities they serve.

Boston WitchBurners

Atlanta Smokestacks (you non-history folks ask someone interested in history why this one makes sense)

NY Hurryups

NY Stuckups (they DO have two teams, y’know)

Minnesota Cheeseheads

Miami Crackheads

San Francisco Fruits & Nuts (okay, so 49ers worked, but not so much anymore)

Tennessee Hillbillies (Banjo-pickers is a close second)

Dallas Guntoters

New Orleans Crocodile Eaters (though “hunters” came in a close second)

Chicago Rumrunners (Mafia comes a close second)

LA Smogs

Houston Oilers (yeah—see, that one once made sense)

St. Louis Flood

Washington Liars (keep in mind this is DC, not the state!)

I could keep going, but I think it might be more interesting for any and all additional thoughts and suggestions to the list. No, I don’t expect anyone with enough clout to pay attention to this list, but it is fun putting together.

I’m sure I’ll have something more serious to say next week.

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Facebook again

I’m going to talk about Facebook once again. Maybe it’s just because it’s new to me, but it seems like FB (abbreviated as such among those “who know”) has really taken off in popularity. Either that, or the “older” generation is just now catching on. (my sister has joined—for those of you who know her. Go make her your friend)

But I’m going to digress a minute.

When Dad retired back in 1996, he and Mom moved back to Piggott, Arkansas the next year. Piggott is the place they both grew up and had always called home. They’d been away for 30 years though, so a lot of things had changed…especially people.

They began to meet people they hadn’t seen in 30 years and eventually even got involved in class reunion stuff (they graduated in 1959…yes, this is their 50 year anniversary!). I used to laugh at them because they were always pulling their high school annuals out and searching for names and faces they knew. It would go like this: they’d bump in to someone at one of their picnics, get to talking, swap names…and then realize they didn’t have a clue who they’d just spent the last hour talking with. They’d rush home, pull out the annuals and flip through, looking for the name. Find it…then realize “oh! THAT’S who that is!”

It got so bad, they eventually moved their annuals from the back of the house to a stack right next to their recliners in the living room!

Well, they’ve been back in Piggott for more than 10 years now…and the annuals are still there.

I’m done digressing now.

BJ got on FB a little while back and not long after, began getting friend requests from people she went to school with both from Pearl and from Northwest Rankin. Yeah, you guessed what was coming. She started asking me about names and people and I didn’t know many of them. Well, it often only takes one new “friend” to open up a whole slew of new friends. I recognized one of her friends from Pearl, added them…then started getting my own set of friend requests from names that looked familiar but I couldn’t quite place.

See, on FB, many people either post pictures of their kids or—very appropriately—MODERN pictures of themselves. But, I haven’t seen many of them in 25+ years, so I have no idea who they are when I look at them.

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On the treadmill

About a year ago, my son Brett asked if he could get on the treadmill and walk. He’d seen me do it a lot…okay, not a lot, but some. Anyway, he wanted to do it, so we let him. This happened at my parents’ house in Arkansas and the treadmill is kinda behind Dad’s chair. I hooked him up to the abort string—the little string that if you fall, the treadmill stops so that the user won’t go around and around like George Jetson—and set him walking.

So he’s walking at a decent little pace and the rest of us go back about our business, which was probably just chatting, solving all the issues of the world.

Unbeknownst to us, Brett was playing with the buttons on the top. We should have noticed the treadmill sound, but didn’t. What we did hear was Brett say—in a VERY calm voice, mind you: “Uh. Can somebody help?”

When we look over at him, he’s running full speed hanging on to the side rails, having accidentally cranked the speed all the way to the top. I wish I’d had a camera to capture the look on his face.

About a month ago, I started walking pretty regular on the treadmill. I’d gotten reenergized because of a “challenge” by a group of ACFW writers. While I don’t know what my cholesterol is now (I haven’t had it checked in some time), the last two times I’ve had it checked, it was high. I was even prescribed medicine at the last doctor visit. He said, however, that I could help myself a lot by losing some weight.

While I never really considered myself overweight, I figured it had to be an issue if the doctor was telling me to lose some. Truth of the matter is that I’m about 50 pounds heavier than when I graduated high school—oh so many years ago! Frustrating thing is that when I was a junior and weighed in a 170, I tried everything I could possibly think of to gain weight. As an offensive tackle on the football team, it wasn’t unusual for me to go up against guys 220 or more. I desperately wanted to get to 190.

Now, I’d love to get DOWN to 190.

I got out of the habit around the time I went to Minneapolis…but I’ve been back at it for about a week and a half now. I had a preacher once remind us that if you did something for 30 straight days, it was a habit.

I’m not sure about that. I hate exercising. Oh, I like to participate in sports activities, but just to exercise. I can think of 100 different ways I’d rather spend my time!

I’ve tried all sorts of things to help pass the time: watching TV (I have to turn it up so loud and even then I can barely understand), reading (I just can’t focus on the words) and other things. But this time, I’ve found a little trick this latest time around: Playstation.

Yep, I play NCAA football while I’m walking. Hey—I’m closing in on 2 miles per day, so it’s a victory—a minor one maybe, but a victory nonetheless!

On another happy note: The kids brought their report cards home on Thursday and they both made straight A’s! Mom and Dad are very proud! J

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