You may have already noticed, but there is something different about the Pacific Northwest. After a long hiatus, water has finally begun to fall from the sky, fires on the ground and in the trees will turn from a terrifying sight to a very serene one, and the leaves will change color, as the season puts on its own all natural fireworks show.
The days of spending your days hiking or floating the river, and drinking your evenings away around the fire pit are over. The days of watching football and huddling inside and drinking beer and cider here to stay. For the next few months, and for some of you, at least.
Actually, many of you are likely parents to young ones, and you generous folks will spend the next several months watching your kiddos play or practice sports in the rain and cold. And you will be standing there, clutching your pumpkin spice latte and keeping an eye on the hydration levels of those youngsters as they energetically play what is commonly known as “magnet ball”. And we salute you proud parents, your dedication is inspiring. We don’t want to be there with you, but we commend your efforts and will do our best to not chide you too much when we talk about a game and all you can say is “I saw the highlights” or “I tracked it on my phone”. You’re a champion of parenting, and we really really like you for it, even if we don’t want to hear about. Even if we don’t invite you to gatherings or take your fantasy football trade requests seriously, we respect your life choices. You haven’t quite moved on from the grip of the sports world, you’re still there cheering on the kids who will one day showcase their skills across the globe on television sets and in stadiums everywhere. Or maybe they won’t . Maybe your kid is the one who spends all of practice digging holes with the heel of their cleats. Or eating mud. I don’t know. It doesn’t matter if they are a star player or a ditch digger or whatever they are. They are all important factors in the system. So be proud! And enjoy that latte. Like many others, I fully hope to count myself as a lucky member of your club in the near future, but that day has not yet arrived, so here we are, and my instincts tell me to mock you instead of confronting that drama head on. There you have it, nature at its finest.
For those of you who have not yet turned the page to parenthood, enjoy these fall NW days while they last. You may not be as warm or cozy as you’d prefer (get a hoodie and an umbrella and stop whining), but it sure beats that heatwave we just finished. Also remember that once you do turn the page and start raising wild little sports fans of your own, they will be interfering with your “agenda” for the next 18-25 years. So while the weather isn’t perfect, during the rainy season you’re not expected to meet at the lake or hike that mountain, or run errands, or watch some kid play with the wrapper for the $50 gift you spent time picking out. And you should never stop at the store that mysteriously has chairs for the “husbands” but doesn’t have a TV, and why those stores exist, I do not know. And you can most certainly turn down your friend when they invite you somewhere on Sunday afternoon only to find out they aren’t watching the game. No one wants that, and more importantly, no one deserves that.
What you can do is hike, bike, and run your way to oblivion on Saturday and Sunday mornings to keep yourself in reasonable shape, and spend the rest of the day with friends and family cheering on your sports teams and throwing back a few brews. Maybe even a little coffee, everyone needs a little liquid energy once in a while.
To quote the great Mike Ditka, “Coffee is the lifeblood that fuels the dreams of champions”. Well said, Mike. Yeah, we’re on a first name basis, and I’m not scared of him. To prove it, he should contact me on my twitter handle @bryantknox . Spoilers – I have a very reasonable fear of Mike Ditka. As Will Ferrell once said; “That Mike Ditka has fists like small trucks”.
Speaking of trucks, we’re moving on. And just like moving, we have officially moved away from summer.
It may be in the 70’s and 80’s next week, but this is officially autumn territory now folks, this is where we live, so learn to love it. You can’t watch your college or professional football teams play meaningful games in the summer, so just give it up. Embrace the autumn, embrace the change. Think the football games have been garbage lately? You’re not alone. If the game stinks, don’t think you can’t throw on Rudy, Remember the Titans, or School Ties as an alternative. And don’t forget to throw on a horror movie once in a while. Keeping the blood moving is a big part of feeling alive, even if it is while you are watching people bite the dust.
Have a fun fall, and enjoy football season while it lasts. We never appreciate it enough. Your lame friend that doesn’t like sports and wants to get a new desk can go to IKEA during the week. Seriously, I checked, they are open every day and most holidays. They just wanted to borrow your truck, which also is available most days. So say no to errands, and say yes, to sports!
And most importantly, say three cheers for autumn. It really is the best time of year. So Go Seahawks, and GO Ducks, and GO Beavers! This time of year, you are number one in our programs and number one in our sports hearts.