Saturday, November 03, 2007

Navy Blue and Gold

Navy beat Notre Dame 46 to 44 in three overtimes. To put in context for myself, the last time Navy beat Notre Dame, I was in high school. It was a brand new high school. John F. Kennedy was president, with less than three weeks to live. We were all hearing crazy stuff about The Beatles but few had heard an entire song by them. The Contrarian himself was but a potentiality of the Eternal Mind, hardly predestined to receive frequent appeals for money from the Notre Dame Alumni Association. If that 1963 game was televised, & if I watched, it was to see Roger Staubach, the superstar Navy quarterback. Navy won 35-14. Navy lost the next 43 games to the Irish. So I was rooting for the Middies to win today, & in South Bend. Notre Dame is historically lousy this year - set their own record today for consecutive home losses - worse than mediocre. Navy was obviously the smaller team in the matchup. Navy finished the 1963 season rated #2. The Army-Navy Game still generated national interest. It would be preposterous to think that Navy could field a national champion contender now, or Army even crack the top 25. Maybe not.

Touching after game ritual of both teams staying on the field for their respective Alma Mater songs, which were composed to be sung after drinking copious quantities of beer.

Tomorrow, I spend the afternoon at the WFMU Record Fair in New York, a pleasant way to put in some volunteer time for the station. I work the "El Cheapo" tables, all CDs & records for a dollar. It's the goal of El Cheapo to get whatever change remains in the customers' pockets after they've spent massive amounts of money browsing the other 100 or so dealers. I'm perfect for the job. I promote my fill-in radio shows as "Discount Free Form." My own budget for the fair is ridiculously small, & I give myself only a hour or so to look around. I'm no longer a record collector; it's been years since I had to feel the hungry maw of a weekly free form show. So I shuffle through the one & two dollar boxes underneath the dealer tables. Even at those prices something really has to catch my eye. Last year it was an LP of Hawaiian songs performed with a small, first rate jazz ensemble, made my "Best of" list for the year.

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I only listened to 1/2 the game on the radio, so I really can't give a detailed comment on the game. But if this was the year for Navy to end "the streak," I'm glad it was during a season that was already down the toilet and on its way to the sewage treatment plant by the end of September. ND's rivalry with Navy is a very gentlemanly one, and win or lose, I always made it a point to buy a round or two for the Middies in the bar. The 1963 ND team was as bad - if not worse - than this year's squad.
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