My Take On College Football and Bowl Games

Thought I’d make my 100th post something totally different. If I offend anyone, um, just laugh for once today, k?


Why yes, yes I do.

I sit at home during the holidays and watch college football. Every game.

Thank you for asking.

It is college football season, in case you don’t follow college football or you happen to live in the same hole that Hussein was found in.

There are many people complaining–from sport’s bars, to holiday get-together’s, to blogs and message boards–about the plethora of bowl games. Arguments abound on the dilution of games, why a 6 and 6 team should be playing in January, and how ridiculous it is that bowl season starts in early December and ends in mid-January.

I see it differently. Since no one is a loser in this society, and everyone has to get a ribbon, I say let every team play in a bowl.

And, secretly, I am awaiting this year’s “Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl” just so I can watch a collection of two- to three-hundred pound linemen shoving each other around. Oh irony, how I love you.

Here are a few of my suggestions (with sponsors when possible):

Sesame Street/PBS You Rock Bowl

Company headquarters: Arlington, VA

Venue: anytime after the Military Bowl–RFK stadium, but I would go with any city where everyone is a winner! Bay Area? Portland, OR?

Participants: The two teams with the worst records. Both teams get a trophy, every player gets a blue ribbon, and no one gets their feelings hurt because the game must end in a tie.

Adam and Eve French Tickler Bowl

Company headquarters: Hillsborough, NC

Venue: Game could be played somewhere in the Raleigh/Durham area, as North Carolina only has the one bowl–Belk–played in Charlotte.

Participants: Each year Playboy Magazine publishes their list of top party schools. Invite the highest ranked available teams. The goody bags for this bowl game would make every player, even the back-up punter, popular on campus.

Anadrol Pump You Up Bowl

Company headquarters: Alaven Pharmaceutical LLC., Marietta, GA (Though I seriously doubt they’d want to sponsor).

Venue: Best bet, same place as Chik-Fil-A Bowl (Atlanta has the one game).

Participants: ESPN reports that steroids are still rampant in college sports. Find the teams with the biggest, freakish kids on the block and invite them. Can you imagine how many teams would be vying to get into this bowl just for the gift bags?

Sylvan Learning Center IQ Bowl

Company headquarters: Baltimore, MD

Venue: M&T Bank Stadium (Maryland has no bowl games, and when you say M&T quickly it becomes sort of ironic for this bowl)

Participants: Invite the two teams with the lowest graduation rates. Pre-game activities include tutoring and old textbooks with all the important information highlighted.

Lifetime Network Manhater Bowl

Company headquarters: New York City

Venue: Believe it or not, there are no bowl games played in NY. The MetLife Stadium.

Participants: Well, this is going to insult someone, but we’d have to invite the two pansiest teams. I suppose we’d have to give this to the two teams that give up the most points and yards on defense.


The Affiliated Pot Dispensaries of America Smoke-A-Bowl

Headquarters: None. This bowl is an homage to the Peach, Cotton, Sugar, and Orange bowls where an industry sponsored the game, not a corporation.

Venue: As a thank you to the voters of the states of Colorado and Washington for supporting small businesses, the games will alternate between Boulder/Denver and Seattle.

Participants: If the Rose Bowl can limit their participants to Big and Pac, then the Smoke-A-Bowl will honor teams from Colorado and Washington. However, since the two states only have five division I-A teams, if those teams are taken, then the bowl would be open to teams from other pot liberal states.

U.S. Treasury Department Bailout Bowl

Headquarters: Washington, D.C.

Venue: Anywhere in America. If Citi (recipient of a three-hundred million dollar bailout) could sponsor a bowl, and a major one, the Rose Bowl, until they dropped it in 2010, then why would we need the middle man? Cut to the chase government!

Participants: This bowl goes to the two schools with the worst revenue issues. There are so many colleges and universities saddled with multiple long-term contracts for head coaches–hired/fired–that they could use some government intervention.


Association of American Bookies Bowl

Headquarters: Vegas or New Jersey, I would suppose.

Venue: Vegas, of course!

Participants: Since the death penalty handed down on SMU years back, it would appear that more and more teams are getting caught in the act of or accused of bribing potential players, giving “gifts” to players, and getting caught in point shaving rings. Since no one person can be blamed, and it is bad to punish everyone (read Penn State), and though the teams violated laws–state or NCAA– and have been banned from post-season play, we should let these kids play too! This year, the teams would be Ohio State vs. Miami. Not a bad match up really. Future games would include teams banned by the NCAA or the university itself.

Payout: revenue made by the bookies divided in half.

Debt Collectors Introductory Bowl

Headquarters: With so many agencies, it is difficult to just assign one. We’ll wait for a major agency to step forward and sponsor this bowl.

Venue: Anywhere in California since it is the most bankrupt state.

Participants: According to a Yahoo article seventy-eight percent of NFL players are bankrupt or severely in debt within two years of leaving the game. This bowl serves as an introduction between the collectors and the future players/”customers”. Teams invited: the two teams with the highest number of NFL prospect or highest ranked draft picks.

So, there you have it. My new list of bowls that we can add for this season. Now, let’s get to it!



“Am I really this shallow?”


Valerie and I were introduced through common friends.
I had tried the mingles and the harmonies and the matches but despite their claims, no one really caught my eye. There were nice girls. There were women wrapped in their own lives. And there was me not really sure what I was looking for.
We chose a restaurant on a crowded street; a restaurant we knew would be busy, loud, and could afford us a chance to disappear should the night go south. I got there first and sat at the bar scanning the people who came in watching for the girl my friend described. Great, she’s twenty minutes late, I bitched to myself.
She sat at the other end of the bar doing and thinking the same thing.
Awkwardly, our eyes caught one another and then we had a long distance laugh.


That was three dates ago.
“Valerie might just be the one,” I cheerfully told our friends. Encouraging smiles and comments followed.


I knew about her accident.
She didn’t talk about it, but I knew from friends it had been bad. It had been foggy, the traffic had slowed approaching a crest on the freeway, and the semi behind her didn’t see it. Weeks were spent in rehab. It was a hurt she’d rather not relive.


“You animal,” she purred as we kissed.
When she invited me to her apartment, I’ll admit I was surprised. She’d seemed so distant. I couldn’t figure out if it was me, her, or her accident. When she leaned over and kissed my lips, surprise became elation.
“I want to make love to you,” she said as she set my hand on her thigh.
And then I had to excuse myself.
Now, I find myself standing in front of the mirror questioning my own expectations.
“Seriously, Valerie is a great girl,” I tell myself in the mirror.
A fucking amputee great girl, the animal in me replies.


word count: 328

Studio 30+: hurt



Trifecta: “animal” 3rd definition: a human being considered chiefly physical or nonrational; also this nature

The Death Mask

Many in town knew her to be clairvoyant.

I didn’t believe it until now as I look down at the face that I pull from the plaster. I wonder now what we can sense and if I will recognize the moments before my own death.

I would suppose an explanation is warranted.

I arrived at the White House and was invited in by one of the servants. The Mrs. was out. The president had reluctantly accepted her proposal to have a mask made, and he sat still on the stool while I began draping the fabric around his broad shoulders, past his long legs, and onto the floor. He said nothing while I applied the oil to his face, and while the wet plaster set, he sat almost resigned to a moment of deathly peace; the plaster became a mask to keep out the horrors of this war. I couldn’t help but look at his hands; his hands were thin, gauntly appendages of a man who once wielded an ax on the frontier. I stared for fifteen long minutes while the president said nothing. I asked him to twitch, first his nose, then scrunch up his nose to his eyes, and finally slowly work his jaw. The mold fell off his face in six large pieces and were caught in the cloth. After it was all done, he looked at me and thanked me for the moments of rest and peace he had. I asked if he was well.

He replied: “I am very unwell.”

He rose, picked up his glasses, hat, and walking cane, and left the room.

That moment was two months ago. Now, the city is draped in black and the funeral train will depart for Chicago tomorrow. I hold what is now the last image of the president’s face and wonder if he knew as well.


Trifecta Writing Prompt: Mask 3rd definition : a protective covering for the face: gas mask; : a device covering the mouth and nose to facilitate inhalation: a comparable device to prevent exhalation of infective material: a cosmetic preparation for the skin of the face that produces a tightening effect as it dries

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Death Masks of American Presidents

A common myth is that Abraham Lincoln’s “death” mask was made post-assassination, but it was created by Clark Mills in February 1865 two months before his assassination. It was the second of two masks created of the president–the first was done in 1861. Lincoln reluctantly had the second mask done, and it has always fascinated me that he would sit for it two months before his death… premonition or not?


A sculpture mold of the Clark Mills life mask of Abraham Lincoln.

Other U.S. Presidents also had death/life masks made of them… here are a few others.

George Washington

President Washington's mask was also created prior to his death. Created by Jean-Antione Houdon 1785

President Washington’s mask was also created prior to his death. Created by Jean-Antione Houdon 1785

James Garfield

President Garfield was the 2nd president to be assassinated. He lingered on for 80 days after being shot which can be seen in his death mask–he had lost over 100 pounds between being shot and dying. (On a fun trivia aside, Garfield’s assassin, Charles Guiteau, chose his .44 British Bulldog because he thought it would look good in a museum).


Woodrow Wilson

Wilson’s face and hand were cast by Dr. Vladimir Fortunato, a sculptor affiliated with Johns Hopkins Hospital, in 1924


Zachary Taylor


After Zachary Taylor’s sudden death in 1850, his wife ordered that his body not be embalmed nor would a death mask be made. This does little to put to rest the many conspiracy theories surrounding Taylor’s death, including those that argue he was assassinated.

William McKinley

Speaking of assassinations, here’s the third president to be assassinated.  McKinley’s mask was created by Edward Pausch of Hartford, Conn.

McKinley's Death Mask is unusual because it is of the entire head, not just the facial features

McKinley’s Death Mask is unusual because it is of the entire head, not just the facial features