Friday, March 21, 2008

Speaking of Garbage....

(Photo from
Speaking of garbage.... here comes my first post. Outside of a string of what my mother described as "excellent work" in high school and college, my writing skills have typically strayed into the realm of crap-tacular, and for this I apologize in advance.

Other things that are crap-tacular: my personal debt, the national economy, my beloved White Sox chances this year, and of course my yearly upset picks in the NCAA Men's Tourney.

An overly large portion of my adult life has been spent obsessing over collegiate basketball. Midnight tipoff for a hot WCC matchup between Portland and Santa Clara? Count me in!!! Early December matchup between Bucknell and Rhode Island? Hells Yeah, thats my shit!!! The downside to this obsession is that I fall in love with teams that I have seen throughout the season, which leads me to danger come bracket time. Case in point: Saint Mary's. I saw Saint Mary's around seven times this season. I thought they were spectacular. Hell, if you can beat the likes of San Francisco and Pepperdine, you should be able to hang with the Dukes and UCONNs of the world, right? ESPN2 put them on at midnight, they must be good! Accordingly I throw them into the Sweet 16 in my bracket-o-integrity.

It of course would follow that they lose by 14 points in the opening round to Miami. And this is why Basketball aficionados like me suck at brackets; we only know enough to screw up our brackets. The brackets I make every year are based in the fantasy world I exist in, where mid-season games are indicators of actual ability to play the sport. What actually matters is the blind luck that enables brackets based on which town you enjoyed visiting more and who has the cuddliest mascot to win.

Every once in a while I'll get one right like Winthrop last year, or Vermont a couple of years back. These, however, are just aberrations in a lifetime spent following teams, just hoping that they are worthy enough to confidently put a circle on a piece of paper the following March, only to discover that they weren't worth my attention in the first place. 40 Minutes of basketball can be a cruel mistress, what can be even more cruel is the realization that you'll have to wait till next year in order to try again.

Will the Saint Mary's loss kill my bracket's chances of earning me money? Probably not, I do tend to over-react. But decisions like that are why my "Weapon of Choice" come March should be a trash can... the better to throw away my bracket before I turn it in.

Also, Fuck Duke.

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