Ramblin’

This is my first Ramblin’. A shout out goes to my old buddy, Meg Tatom. Yesterday I finally promoted this site on Facebook and Meg said she looked forward to reading my ramblings. The descriptor for Bird’s Banter reads thusly, “A potpourri of ramblings, stories, musings and opinions.” The problem is, there were none, officially. My blogs contain all of the above, but none were dedicated to ramblin’.

So, let’s ramble. 

The song that is currently playing on my iTunes is Willie and Hag’s “It’s All Going to Pot.” It is. The world is, at least. But not the kind Willie and Merle are singing about. That might not be so bad.

I became addicted to Buffalo wings back in the mid-eighties in Upstate New York. The Hudson Valley. Albany and environs. Melodye, or Paul as you may know her, might have it worse than I do. Anyway, our favorite place to get said wings was at Skipper’s Tavern in downtown Albany. It was not in the nicest part of town. No matter. It was THE place to feed one’s jonesin’ for wings. Mild, medium, hot, or death. We liked ’em hot. I’m sweating under my eyes thinking about them. Skipper’s is closed. Burned down. Gone. Sigh.

Speaking of pot, it ought to be legal. Of course, Big Pharm and Monsanto would screw that up like everything else.

How’s your mommer ‘n ‘nem? Don’t y’all just love that interrogative phrase?

BTW, I hope all of y’all’s mommers are well. If you mommer is gone, I’m sorry to hear that.

“Slap the dog and spit in the fire!” I heard Naomi Judd utter this euphemism many years ago. Do any of y’all know how she’s doing?

South Carolina plays at Vanderbilt the first Thursday night SEC game on September 1. Tick tick tick.

“Long Way Down”, by the SteelDrivers is now playing on my shuffle. Apple Music created this Americana setlist for  me. I really like it. It features Brandi Carlile, Dwight Yoakam, Sam Outlaw, Ray Wylie Hubbard, and Banditos, among many others. I’m in my three month free trial with Apple Music. I like it. Still haven’t decided if I’ll keep it and pay the $9.99 per month. It ain’t much, but when you add in Netflix (streaming and DVD), the Xfinity starter package (with a sports channels extra), etc., it all adds up for a po’ boy on a fixed income.

Back to ‘tick tick tick’. Frasier Crane responded with that line, on Cheers, to no one in particular after Woody said he never talked about his problems. He just stuck them away somewhere and tried to forget them. “Tick tick tick.”

It’s now thundering outside. Could it be thundering inside? The dogs are tick tacking all over the house with no lap to sit in. Uh oh.

*GOT SPOILER ALERT*

Me and Paul just finished season six of Game of Thrones a couple of nights ago. WhoooWeee! I was so happy to see Ramsay Bolton (who let the dogs out?) and Walder Fry (give ’em hell, Arya!) get theirs. WDE!!! I just wish Cersai Lanister would get hers.  GOOOOOOOO Daenerys! And how about Jon Snow turning out to be a “true” Snow?

I do enjoy binge watching these TV, Netflix, Amazon series! Some favorites are House of Cards, The Fall, The Killing, Wallander, Broadchurch, Mozart in the Jungle, Transparent, Happy Valley, Luther, Longmire, Rectify, Damages, Boss, Bloodline, and Last Tango in Halifax.

If you’ve never used The Message translation of the Bible, you should. It is self-described as ‘The Bible in Contemporary Language’.

And with that, “Even so, come Lord Jesus.” (And HURRY!)

Grace and Peace.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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SEC Football Previews and Picks

Hello, I’m Bird and I’ll be your SEC Blogger! I really hate it when servers greet you that way at a restaurant. So why not begin this, new, weekly column in such a manner? Does that make sense? No, but neither does picking SEC football at this juncture. Being that this is my initial SEC blog, I thought I would divulge my spring divisional picks and crown a winner of the SEC Championship Game. I will also take a look at the most intriguing intersectional match-ups involving teams in the Southeastern Conference for the 2016 season. I love predictions and speculation on what lies ahead for us college football fanatics.

So here we go! Mind you, this is only April and the landscape can change, sometimes dramatically, by September. We will take another look at it when the season draws much closer and freshmen arrive on campus. Injuries, suspensions, and unforeseen events can also alter our perceptions over the next five months.

East

Tennessee (No surprise here. Most forecasters will probably lean in this direction.)
Georgia (I’m basing this on the winner of the World’s Largest…, no we can’t say that. Ok, the Jacksonville Drunk Fest).
Florida (Will lose to both the Vols and Dawgs and they need a quarterback.)
Missouri (A very good defense, per usual, and new head Coach, Barry Odom, will pull an upset or two out of his pocket.)
Kentucky (The Wildcats continue to improve and will make a bowl.)
Vanderbilt (Derek Mason will also see improvement in the monumental task he finds himself in.)
South Carolina (Will Muschamp wasn’t very good at Florida or Auburn and will not be at USC East either.)
West

Alabama (Sigh. As long as Nick Saban is at the helm in Tuscaloosa, it’s foolish to call it any other way.)
Ole Miss (Hugh Freeze is doing a remarkable job in Oxford. Two-in-a-row against Saban. Also remarkable. Chad Kelly returns.)
LSU ( Leave Les alone! He’s 112 and 32!!!)
Auburn (The Tigers will be much improved but I don’t know how this will reflect in their overall record. They absolutely must find a quarterback.)
Arkansas (Bret Bielema fields another good team but the loss of Brandon Allen, Alex Collins and others will hurt.)
Texas A&M (The turmoil in College Station mounts.)
Mississippi State (Dak Prescott is long gone. Dan Mullen has built the Bulldogs into a good program but they’re in the SEC West.)
Who will win the SEC Championship Game on December 3? The University of Tennessee will upset the University of Alabama… in Knoxville on what actually will be the Third Saturday in October in 2016. The Crimson Tide will defeat the Vols in the Georgia Dome to, once again, capture the SEC crown.

And now, the intersectional match-ups:

Alabama vs. USC West (Sept. 3)
This one has fans all over the country chomping-at-the-bit for some foot-damn-ball and the Lane Kiffin storyline makes it even more compelling. It will be played in Jerry World. Does Bama play a game there every season, or is it just me?

Auburn vs. Clemson (Sept. 3)
An enormous opportunity for Gus Malzahn’s felines to take a quantum leap in the eyes of the football world with what is, possibly, the number one team in the country coming to Jordan-Hare Stadium.

Georgia vs. North Carolina (Sept. 3)
Larry Fedora had this thing rolling until undermanned Baylor rushed for a new bowl record of 645 yards in the Russell Athletic tilt. The Bears won 49-38 but it wasn’t that close. This is the Chick-fil-a Kickoff Game in Hotlanta.

LSU vs. Wisconsin (Sept. 3)
From Lambeau Field in Green Bay! How much fun will that be? Should be a donnybrook! You need this, Les. The critics could be howling if you lose. But it’s not a conference game.

Missouri vs. West Virginia (Sept. 3)
In Morgantown. Great chance for Odom to get some positive press and whet the appetite of the Tiger faithful.

Texas A&M vs. UCLA (Sept. 3)
Jim Mora, Jr. brings his Bruins into College Station. Kevin Sumlin could, at least temporarily, quell the storm in Aggieland with a victory.

Ole Miss vs. Florida State (Sept. 5)
The Labor Day special. A huge game with far-reaching national implications and two highly-ranked teams. It will be played in Orlando. I smell a wide-open affair.

Arkansas vs. TCU (Sept. 10)
The Hawgs will be traveling to Ft. Worth for a monster showdown in Cowtown. They will win their opener, the previous week, against LA Tech. This one will be just a bit more demanding. It’s hard to see them coming away with a win.

Tennessee vs. Virginia Tech (Sept. 10)
At the Bristol Motor Speedway in the tri-city area of Eastern Tennessee. The place holds 160,000. It will be strange to not see Frank Beamer patrolling the sideline of the Hokies. Maybe Butch Jones can get people’s minds off the off-the-field issues surrounding the program.

Vanderbilt vs. Georgia Tech (Sept. 17)
The Dores will make the trip to Atlanta in a game both schools have to think they can win. This could result in a very good ball game.

Mississippi State vs. Brigham Young (Oct. 15)
The Bulldogs travel to Provo, Utah for a mid-season clash with the Cougars. They play Auburn the prior week in StarkVegas and could be beat up both physically and emotionally.

Now I’ve gotten myself revved up for some SEC Football! Hey, it’s only 150 days until Vanderbilt and South Carolina tee it up in Nashville!

E-mail Bird at bird [dot] lecroy [at] campuspressbox [dot] com or follow him on Twitter @Autull.