Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Field of Battle

Sometimes young boys become young men on the field of battle. Such was the case last Friday night for my nephew Max Nelson and the rest of the 2012 Manistique Emeralds high school football team.

They entered their last regular season game with a 5 and 3 record and a chance, if they won, to advance to the high school football playoffs for the first time in many years.

It had been raining off and on throughout the day and the field conditions were slippery. That did come into play a bit. Max, a sure-handed receiver, dropped a touchdown pass in the endzone. He wasn't the only player to do so during the evening. Both team moved the ball up and down the field before the other defense would stiffen and the ball would be turned over on downs. At the end of regulation play the score was tied at 6.

I'd never seen a high school game go into overtime. Each team gets it at their opponents' 10 yard line with four downs to score. Both teams failed to score and they went into a second overtime. That's when things got interesting. The Emeralds kept the Harbor Springs Rams out of the endzone, in fact backing them up in the process. When the Emeralds got the ball they were having a tough time trying to get the ball in the endzone and their quarterback was sacked on one play, but an opposing player stood over the QB and taunted him. The Rams were called for unsportsmanlike conduct and Manistique got the ball at the one.

On the final play the Emeralds faked the ball to their go-to running back and handed off to another. They scored and the Emeralds won 12 to 6. Parents and family couldn't have been more proud of those young men. The four captains linked arms when they went on the field for the overtime coin toss to see who would get the ball first. They celebrated on the field and some cried as they left it, including Max. They were tears of joy and perhaps fatigue over a hard fought win.

It was a defining moment for them and one that I am glad I got a chance to see. That's Max number 80 in the photo from one of his earlier games. He's a little older, wiser and stronger now.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Robo Bob

I wish there was a Robo Bob for all the robo calls I've received this year. In fact I wish there was a Robo Bob for unsolicited calls wanting something from me that I'm not willing to give.

Recently I got a call from someone, phone ID said unknown number, wanting to know if I would contribute towards all the poor children on a Navajo reservation. I probably should have given more thought to my response when I asked the caller if there was a casino on the reservation and wouldn't they contribute towards the children's plight. She told me most Native Americans don't care for casinos. No contribution from me.

One thing about those calls is some are very persistent. I got three calls one day from the same number wanting to poll me on politics, something I won't do as a reporter. I said I didn't want to take the poll. They called back twice.

One day I got four robo calls about the upcoming elections. The first one I let voicemail pickup, but they didn't leave a message. Call number two I had just sat down to eat a meal. Call number three I was watching a movie I was looking forward to seeing. Call number three I was indisposed. So to sum up the days calls. For the record I'm fed up with those type of calls, so watch your step and quit giving me crap.