Monday Morning Confessional

I confess that I’m getting a slow start to my Monday. I can always tell how much energy my previous week required by how much of an early start I am able to get on Monday. Self-awareness has never been my strong suit, and the ability to admit to myself that I’m tired and need to just take some time to recover is still not something that comes naturally to me. I usually try to dig deep, which is seldom, if ever, a really good idea.

I confess that our family went to the Chiefs preseason game last Friday and it was really fun. You can watch the NFL on TV every week, but until you see in person just how big and fast these guys are, it’s hard to appreciate. How any of them will be able to stand upright at the age of 50 I have no idea. I know people were disappointed with Alex Smith’s performance, but I think the Chiefs offense is really close. I also don’t think they were prepared for SF to blitz on nearly every down – which is generally not a part of the preseason routine. Harbaugh… he is the guy you love if he’s your coach, but everybody else pretty much loves to hate.

I confess that I learned a little bit about Chiefs fan culture on Friday night. It was preseason, so I really didn’t think it would be that rowdy, and by and large everybody was pretty chilled out. However, the two extremely drunk men behind us did not get that memo. They were the only people in our section who were really, really into the game. The problem was that they were quite drunk, so they had lost all inhibitions. For instance, I’m not sure 2nd and 8 in is the right time to yell “stand up and f%#&ing yell… It’s a Chiefs game!” When he finally became too drunk to stand, my new friend sat leaning forward yelling for the defense about three inches from my right ear. Every time somebody gave him a disapproving look, flinched after a particularly loud F-bomb, or asked him to chill out as I did twice, he’d yell, “It’s a Chiefs game.” On the bright side, my kids learned some new words.

After the third “God-D-it,” yelled right in my youngest son’s ear even the equally drunk wing-man told our guy to knock it off. Instead of saying, “sorry,” he yelled, “I don’t give a sh*$, it’s a F#$&ing Chiefs game!” My boys eyes were as big as saucers. Personally, I was just glad he was getting the words in the proper order – after all I want my kids to be able to cuss properly when they grow up.

Later on, while we were standing in line at the concessions, a middle-aged man with a serious beard and a leather Fedora with a feather in the bill whistled the loudest whistle I’ve ever heard in response to what was a routine tackle after a five yard gain. Literally 50 people spun around to look at him, including a 3 year old girl who began to wag her finger at him. He seemed a bit taken aback by the reaction, staggered briefly, and offered a quick excuse… you guessed it: “What? It’s a Chiefs game!”

That’s when it hit me. This could be a powerful revelation. “It’s a Chiefs game,” seems to be some sort of  carte blanche excuse for behaving badly. Does this transfer to the rest of life? When my wife asks me to remember to send an email and I forget, can I  just say, “It’s a Chiefs game!”? Next time I lose my temper I’ve got my ready made excuse: “It’s a Chiefs game!” I’m trying this when I get my next traffic ticket: “C’mon officer! It’s a Chief’s game!”

Luckily drunk guy and wing-man disappeared by the 2nd half and we had an incredible time watching some young players fight for a spot on the roster. We saw two 55 yard field goals, and an awesome Chiefs interception happened right in front of us. The announcer let us know that the Royals completed a sweep of a double-header with the Tigers. The temperature was nearly fall-like, and I sat there with the three people in the world who matter most to me, laughing, pointing out interesting things, cheering good plays, eating caramel-corn and nachos, and thinking how grateful I am to be a  part of this family. It was deep-down good.

I confess that I started David McCullough’s biography of Truman last week, and now I’m obsessed with this book. I confess that I told myself that I was not going to start any new books until I finished the manuscript I’m working on, but I couldn’t resist. I’m learning a ton about the history of Kansas City politics, and the Pendergast machine. I’m also learning that Truman was extremely concerned about income inequality, and was convinced that it was the reason for the Great Depression.

I confess that I have stopped exercising quite as regularly as I have for the past few years. I’ve also been riding my bike a bit more than running. I’m giving myself permission to work straight through until dinner on days that I’m being particularly productive. I figure a few days missing here and there won’t have a huge overall impact. My goal is to make my writing deadlines and then crank up the mileage again when the weather gets cold.

I confess that I have finally learned to love it when people sit by themselves at a coffee shop engrossed in a phone conversation via a bluetooth devise. It just looks like they are talking to themselves. It’s happening to me right now as I’m writing this entry, and the woman having the conversation has the blue tooth in her far ear, so I can’t see it.  She’s laughing and talking and shaking her head. I’m pretending that she’s totally insane. I love this.

I confess that I read some Buechner last week for the first time in months. He’s got to be one of my all-time favorites.

Okay friends, I’ve made my confession. Now it’s time for you to make yours!

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