December 19th, 2005

Every One Is Special

When I was a kid, I frequently got sick right before Christmas. The year changed, but the bug remained the same. I also got colds a few times each winter. But they were pretty similar too. Since moving to Tucson, by contrast, I have discovered that there is a world of possibility in the realm of malady. Each thing I come down with seems to have a delicately variegated trajectory worthy of a Dickens novel. And no two bugs are alike. Although Kim doesn't get sick the way I do, she has noticed something similar. There are so many discrete stages to an illness here. Maybe that should that be "now" instead of "here." Could it be that bugs are becoming more fine-grained in their individuality? Or is it simply that this relatively balmy desert clime permits the observance of nuances that would get lost amid the blasts of cold-weather misery? Whatever the reason, I'm mighty nostalgic for the Fordist illnesses of my youth.

Plus and Minus

I'm coughing less tonight. My chest feels less stepped-on. I think I'm turning the corner. On the other hand, my mouth tastes like a rusty pipe, my eyes are seeing everything in anamorphic widescreen, and I keep feeling parts of my body that don't exist. More specifically, I have the disturbing impression that I have transformed into a lizard. My brain hasn't felt this odd since cpratt made me try Maizoro Barbie cereal back at the house on John Street. Fear my pointy, pink tongue!

Did They Even Read Their Own Stats?

ESPN is building up to the Rose Bowl by letting fans vote on how USC would have fared against ten great teams in college football history. Since their first hypothetical opponent is the only one of those teams I saw in person, I paid closer attention. After describing the 1991 Washington Huskies come-from-behind defeat of Nebraska at Lincoln, the capsule summary notes that, "Washington's only other remotely close game was a Week 10 trip to USC. The Dawgs won 14-3, and the pollsters were not impressed, moving the Huskies from No. 2 down to No. 3." But if you look at the schedule below, alongside a 54-0 defeat of Arizona and similarly dramatic blow-outs the game I attended is listed: Washington 24-California 17. Hmmm. Even on paper, that sounds a little more than "remotely close" to me. And since I was there, I can add the important fact that the Bears had a chance to tie on the very last play. Had the younger but much taller Sean Dawkins run the route instead of Brian Treggs, they could very well have had a touchdown. I'm sure, if Mike Pawlawski read this, that he's rolling over and over in agony on his futon. When you don't have many great seasons to look back on, you have to pay special attention to the ones you have. Any Cal fan will tell you that.