December 18th, 2006


Oh, yeah ... forgot to mention ...

Spent a major chunk of the day on Sunday at a fund-raiser for The Girls' school's athletic department. They do this every year, and it usually brings in enough money for some specific needs (this year being new basketball backboards and gymnastic floor mats). I think they were targeting four grand, and likely made that, to judge from the crowd (at $25/person).

Picking the Bucs game seemed brilliant for three quarters. The Bears were coasting along, up 24-3 by mid-way in the 3rd ... then things got ugly. Somehow the D must have gone to sleep, because in just over a quarter, the Bucs scored four touchdowns (to the Bears' one), tying the game up at 31-31 at the end of regulation. Fortunately, the D woke up for overtime and was able to control field position to give Gould two shots at a winning FG (he missed the first one).

  BEARS                34  
  BUCCANEERS     31  

Ack. I'm still shaky from watching it. Anyway, with a Bears win and a Saints loss, The Bears now have home-field advantage straight through the NFC playoffs. Hopefully they'll get their Defensive act together (admittedly, it's hard to lose four Pro-Bowl players from your starting 11 and still maintain the same level of performance) in time for the post-season, so we don't end up like last year (getting home field only to get whupped at home in the first game).

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This certainly puts things in perspective ...

Wow. The opening line for next week in Detroit is Bears by 3½ ... given that you generally cede 3 points to the home team, this means that the oddsmakers aren't even crediting the 12-2 Bears with being a full touchdown better (on a neutral field) than the 2-12 Lions.

I just hope that the 4th quarter yesterday was a fluke ... I mean, we were cruising along (just like anybody would have expected giving the Bears' and the Buccaneers' records) right up to the end of the third quarter ... then the Bucs scored four touchdowns in the last 16:00 of the game. Hopefully the first 44:00 yesterday is the reality, and that Tampa just got charged up by switching QBs (their starter was horrible).

Very nervous.

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Speech #3

I'm sure everybody out there will be fascinated to hear that I got Speech #3 written this afternoon. I mean, I've been writing it in my head for weeks, but I finally sat down and typed it out (and none too soon, given that I'm supposed to be presenting it on Wednesday!). It's not brilliant (it flows unevenly, I think) but it's not bad. It's a bit more of a downer than I had intended, but that's where it ended up going.

By the way, anybody interested in seeing video clips of me doing these? Extreme Toastmasters has started to record our various efforts, and have been posting them on the site. We're still fighting some technical issues (you may recall my eBay efforts to find some light stands, so you can actually see the speakers), but these should be worked out soon.

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