GateHouse — A few things about the NCAA tournament, which this year is being attended (and handled nicely, thankyouverymuch) by my Indiana Hoosiers, who have finally returned to the dance following a lengthy recruiting scandal in which the school hired a coach who was previously involved in a recruiting scandal and then came to Indiana and engaged in — this was weird — a recruiting scandal, a development which caused everybody in Indiana to gasp.
When this recruiting scandal happened Indiana — which, interesting story, had spent most of the previous few decades being coached by an overweight cartoon character with a spotty history of winning championships and not-choking people — lost everyone who ever played for them and spent many many years losing basketball games to schools that exist only online, such as the University of Phoenix and some people who met on FarmVille . So this is kind of a big deal, and please excuse my singing of the IU fight song, which is actually a new song, as we lost our original one in a recruiting scandal.
1. Hey, guys! Guys in the office! Listen, I’m gonna be sitting at my desk this morning, just hanging around doing some work and drinkin’ me some coffee, so is there any way you could hit me up with some talk about how your bracket is doing? Really doing? I don’t mean just stats and wins and losses — those are boring and bourgeois NUMBERS, devoid of LIFE and FEELING and FEELINGS OF SELF-ASSIGNED SUPERIORITY. No no, I want to know how you did it, how you picked nearly 2/3 of your games right, what you were *thinking* EACH TIME.
The finest film ever made about Indiana basketball. IN YOUR FACE, Hackman.
GateHouse — So somehow I ended up an “assistant coach” on my son’s first-grade basketball team. I might as well be a neurosurgeon, snake handler, public speaker or priest. There are few, if any, non-crocodile-related activities on Earth I am less equipped to introduce to others, even if those others are mostly interested in constantly pushing each other and dramatically falling down for no discernible purpose. Once, while playing for a 2007 rec league team of suckitude so legendary that it was brought up on Facebook this past Sunday, I successfully nailed two consecutive free throws, and the heartbreakingly sympathetic, oh-bless-his-heart applause from my quote-fingersfriends in attendancestill echoes in my mind on the cold nights.
I am, however, easily swayed and blessed with a below-average awareness of my own shortcomings, so when my friend (and actual basketball person) Jamie needed a hand, I said sure, figuring:
You know, “attentive parenting” or whatever and
I grew up in Indiana in the 1980s, in a nice house in a nice neighbborhood with a nice, picturesque, state-issued rickety backboard nailed to the side of the barn (if you didn’t have one already, barns were assigned to residents via the popular Post-”Hoosiers” Civic Pride Act Of 1986). I also attended Indiana University, so I figured if things get really hairy I could always just fall back on my geographic instinct, which is to choke somebody and get fired.
I'm a a writer for such outlets as Men's Health, South Magazine, Nickelodeon's NickMom.com, Billboard, brucespringsteen.net and Paste, a syndicated humor columnist for GateHouse and a father of two (the younger of whom has been personally approved by Bruce Springsteen) on the coast of South Carolina. Even longer bio/clips.