They played the oddest game in high school football history in the 2008-2009 season down in Grapevine, Texas.
It was Grapevine Faith vs. Gainesville State School and everything about it was upside down. For instance, when Gainesville came out to take the field, the Faith fans made a 40-yard spirit line for them to run through.
Did you hear that? The other team's fans?
They even made a banner for players to crash through at the end. It said, "Go Tornadoes!" Which is also weird, because Faith is the Lions.
It was rivers running uphill and cats petting dogs. More than 200 Faith fans sat on the Gainesville side and kept cheering the Gainesville players on-by name.
"I never in my life thought I'd hear people cheering for us to hit their kids," recalls Gainesville 's QB and middle linebacker, Isaiah. "I wouldn't expect another parent to tell somebody to hit their kids. But they wanted us to!"
I find myself having the same conversation with people almost every day. And I know I am not the only one. It’s the one that goes like this:
“Hey Tyler, how are you today?”
Without even skipping a beat, let alone stopping to think about how I am feeling in that very moment, I reply, “I am good. How are you?”
Now in this moment, am I truly concerned with how this person is doing? The answer is maybe or maybe not, usually depending on how I myself am actually feeling or how busy I am at the time. Sometimes, it comes down to how much I am truly invested in that person’s life. The same typically goes for the person on the other end as well.
The truth is this is something we feel we must do to be polite. We have to ask the other person how they are feeling, how are their families, how is their job, etc. The real question is… have we prepared ourselves for a bad answer?
Pretend I was offering you a crisp and brand new hundred dollar bill. I’m pretty sure you’d take it.
Now, pretend I crumpled it up in my hand. Would you still want it? Of course you would.
Now, let’s say that after I crumpled it up, I threw it in the dirt and stomped on it. Then, I ripped some pieces of it off. Then, I took a lighter and singed some of the edges. Then, I took a marker and drew glasses and freckles on Ben Franklin.
Would you still want the hundred dollar bill then?
The answer, of course, is still “yes.”
Do you remember the scene at the beginning of “Return of the Jedi” where Luke is about walk the plank, and be forced into the Sarlacc pit, but last minute he spins around grabs the plank, throws himself back up and then goes hog wild with the lightsaber? If you don’t, just read the question again, but this time more as a statement.
Are you all caught up? Good, so one day I’m at the public pool, enjoying life, when suddenly I find myself on the diving board (for a more accurate mental picture, I’m wearing a Power Ranger life jacket, but that’s not as important). I’m trying to figure out what sick move I’m going to do, and I’ve got it narrowed down to a front flip and a cannon ball. Now if I do the front flip, there’s a ninety percent chance I’m going to hit the water with my back and that normally stings, but my cannon ball wasn’t the tsunami inducing force it is today. And then it hit me. Luke. Skywalker.
I don’t know why, but I have always liked getting things for the people I care about. I gave Pam so much jewelry, she kindly asked me to stop. When Kristin was little, I would buy her real stuff: jewelry (cheap), purses, make up, the works. So I am always on alert for something I think my family would enjoy.
Enter the SLANKET. That’s right, a sleeved blanket. A really cool item.
When I first saw the “Slankets,” they were like $40 a piece. I thought, wow, what a concept! My girls are always cold. So what do I do? I order not one, but two. What’s good for Pam, I consider, must be good for Kristin. So, I order two off the television at 2:00 in the morning.