So, I’ve inadvertently started a game of one-upsmanship with the local sports personalities of the greater Sacramento area. Don’t ask me how it happened. Ok, go ahead and ask me. No, I couldn’t possibly. Oh, ok, I’ll tell you the story.
It goes like this: A couple of weeks ago, my lovely companion and I were participating in the Streets of London pub quiz as we are wont to do. We pulled up a couple of chairs, just the two of us as a short-handed trivia team, when in walks Jim Kozimor. Always having liked the diminutive sports kaster, I pointed him out to my bosom companion and we both commented on how fun it would be, respectfully mind you, to beat the pants of Kozimor and his table of pals in this intellectual contest. Yes, I know, nothing more than a petty human instinct to bring down the mighty, but it was fun. An hour later, we had discovered that the two of us had indeed placed first in the evening’s festivities and had wiped up the floor with Kozimor’s krew. Well, winning at the highly competitive pub quiz was treat enough, but it was only made sweeter by the taking down a peg of one of Sacramento’s local celebrati.
Fast-forward several weeks to last night at the State Fair. Having just exited the white-knuckle experience of riding the Sky Coaster, a rickety ski-lift that transports you from one side of Cal Expo to the other, my same lovely companion and I were in the mood for some serious midway gaming. You can tell a lot about a person from the types of carnival games they choose to throw their money at. Someone who tries to score a giant Winnie the Pooh by shooting a 12” basketball into a 10” hoop is probably a washed up athlete, looking to regain some glory days. Those who like to burst and break things for prizes were probably victims of fetal alcohol syndrome and feel the need to destroy in order to be vindicated. And those, like me, who are entranced at the prospect of shooting water into a clown’s mouth, are well-adjusted, witty, handsome and erudite individuals who are very comfortable with themselves and their place in the universe…did I mention they were handsome too? Anyway, having promised my beautiful companion a bauble at the midway, we sat down to do some aquatic damage when who sits down next to me but Del Rogers, KCRA’s nightly sportscaster. Immediately showing himself to be loud, aggressive and obnoxious, I felt that this was really not Del’s game and that I had a leg up right off the bat.
The buzzer rang and we were off, my eye never breaking from the steady stream of lukewarm water firing into that clown’s maw. With a steady eye, like that of a WWII battalion sniper lining up a kill shot on an enemy patrol, I shot, digging my thumbs into the firing buttons and shutting out the rest of the world. When the bell signaled a winner, I stood up, ready to collect my prize, finding, to my amazement, that Del’s 5 year old daughter had beaten us all. Humbled and more than a little embarrassed, my lovely lady had to drag me away from the scene of my disgrace before I challenged the young Rogers girl to a race down the giant plastic slide or a try at skeeball horseracing.
Technically, Del himself didn’t beat me, so I don’t consider the event a defeat. I consider myself unbeaten in the “me vs. Sac Sportscasters” contest. So, I offer an open invitation to all the rest of you talking heads. Yeah, that’s right Jim Crandall, I’m talking to you. Look me up and take me on, I dare ya’. I will eat more pie than you Grant Napier, guess closer the number of jelly beans in the jar than you Coach T, rock paper scissors better than you Walt Gray (if he ever goes back to doing sports that is). You know where to find me. I’ll be waiting.