Tidbits - February 9, 2017

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TIDBITS by RALPH SHEALY



CHOKED UP!

  I went to bed Sunday night mad with the Atlanta Braves, uh, Falcons.
  I couldn’t believed they choked away the National League playoff, uh, World Series, uh, Super Bowl!
  Get my drift if you are a Braves and Falcons fan?
  Fox showed a graphic prior to the Super Bowl that showed Boston professional teams had won 38 “world” titles. Atlanta teams had won one, the 1995 World Series.
  When Atlanta went up 28-3 in the third quarter Sunday, I had no idea they would get outscored 31-0 the rest of the way en route to the greatest Super Bowl meltdown in history.
  Matt Ryan won the NFL Most Valuable Player award on Saturday, and was the “goat of the century” Sunday, for his decision making.
  A middle school quarterback is supposed to know you don’t take a sack when you are on the other team’s 20-yard-line, but that’s what Ryan did. All the Falcon’s needed were three downs and a field goal and they win the Super Bowl, but instead, they call a pass play and Ryan is sacked for a 12-yard-loss. You don’t do that, you don’t do that and you don’t do that.
  On the next play, the Falcons get called for holding, and ended up out of field goal range.
  They punt, and New England drives down for the tying score, and goes on to win in overtime.
  Earlier in the fourth quarter, the Falcons faced third and one. Instead of putting Carolina’s Patrick DiMarco in as a blocking back and running the ball, the Falcons decided to pass and Ryan was sacked. Run for the first down, make it, and New England doesn’t have enough time to mount a comeback.
  In close games, it always comes down to one or two plays.
 Saluda fans can think of one or two plays in the Abbeville game that separated the Tigers from a shot at the state championship.
  Hunter Renfrow caught the winning touchdown pass for Clemson with one second to go in the National title game. That was the game winner, but if Hunter doesn’t make a tackle early in the game when it appeared Alabama was going to return a fumble for a touchdown, his catch is moot. Instead of a touchdown, Bama ended up settling for a field goal. Missing those four points made it possible for Clemson to win with one second left. Hunter was a hero at the end, because he was a hero earlier. He set himself up!
  What is it with Atlanta and superstars?
  I mentioned Matt Ryan and football, but the Braves have had enough goats in the post season to eat all the grass in Central Park.
  For a time, the Braves had Tom Glavine, Greg Maddux and John Smoltz in the starting rotation. All three of those pitchers were elected to the baseball Hall of Fame, yet the Braves only won one World Series with three Hall of Fame pitchers, and a Hall of Fame manager. How is that possible?
  Of course, Matt shouldn’t feel like the Lone Ranger in Super Bowl performances. Last year’s league MVP Cam Newton of the Panthers also had a bad Super Bowl. Cam followed the performance with one of the worst seasons by any quarterback in the league this past season.
  I hope that doesn’t happen to Matt Ryan. He had a great regular season, but stars are marked by what they do in the post season.
  Isn’t it amazing that old Tom Brady threw for over 400 yards with footballs that were not under inflated? After all, he did have to sit out the first four games of the year because of “Deflategate.” I still think that was the dumbest thing ever, and it went all the way to the Supreme Court!

WHAT HAPPENED?

  These year’s Super Bowl featured the most disappointing commercials ever in my opinion.
  Normally, I join in the arguments after the Super Bowl is over as to which commercial was better, but this year very few of them stood out.
  I liked the Melissa McCarthy “stunt” ad, but I can’t remember who it was far, and the Clydesdale take-off was cute, but I can’t remember who sponsored that one either. Oh, and I did like the Alfa Romeo car spot. I guess that means the car is coming to America?
  Many of the ads appeared to be political in nature, but let me point out none of those ads were produced in the last two weeks.
  The television networks know this, but they were quick to  air repeatedly the Anheuser-Busch commercial about the trials founder Adolphus Busch went through when he came to American as an immigrant, hinting, perhaps, that it was aimed at President Trump.
  This was a beautifully made and extremely expensive commercial to produce. According to the company, the commercial was over a year in the making and was shot in October 2016, so at the time no one knew who would be elected President of the United States nor what the immigration policy would be.
  The Coke commercial with “American the Beautiful” sung in several languages was shown during last year’s Super Bowl, so it was not new.
  The ads were not aimed at the new president, but wanted to play up the American dream.
  Now, if there are a lot of these type ads during next year’s Super Bowl, or the NCAA March Madness, or the World Series, etc.,  we will know at whom they are aimed!
  P.S. - This has nothing to do with commercials,  but I’ve got to say Melissa McCarthy’s impersonation of White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer on SNL was brilliant! She is amazing!

GAGA

  I have to admit, I like Lady Gaga. I’ve downloaded several of her albums.
  I thought the halftime show at the Super Bowl was great. I didn’t find out until after the game, the light show behind her when she was at the top of the stadium was created by drones flying in formation.
  Wow! I still can’t keep my drone out of trees.
  When Lady Gaga jumped from the top of the stadium suspended by wires, and landed on the podium, I was amazed, because I would had died. (I found out later that was staged.)
  Obviously, she is not afraid of heights!

WHAT?

  Did you see on the “Sunday Today Show” about a woman out west who was playing with her pet snake, and the snake climbed threw her enlarged earlobe ring and got stuck!
  She had to go to the emergency room to get the snake removed!
  It makes me appreciate what emergency room workers go through.
  Oh, they greased up the snake and got him out of the ear lobe. Neither snake nor owner were harmed. I haven’t heard about the people in the ER!

WE’LL MISS

  I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of George Nichols.
  He and his wife Alice were among of our Tuesday afternoon Sentinel purchase regulars. They would get three papers, delivered by us to the curb. Yes, we provide curb service on paper printing day.
  I’ve been emceeing the Farm Bureau contests for over 30 years and Mr. George and Mrs. Alice have been active supporters of that organization even before I got involved.
  He served many terms as president of the Saluda County Farm Bureau through the years.
  He was a good man, loved by all, who devoted his life to Saluda County, his family, his church and friends. He will be greatly missed.