was February of 1988. I was in New Orleans as a representative
of Syracuse University Ambulance for a conference at Tulane University.
One of the other schools attending was Georgetown University.
Syracuse-Georgetown. The Big East. College basketball powers.
didn’t really like each other that much. It’s a longer story…
nothing truly serious or with any type of real dislike based on
something substantial… plus a true retelling and investigation
would involve much more than just the two schools or students
from those schools at the event. But, it makes for better reading
to create some tension. And, we never were compelled to spend
any time with the group from Georgetown while there or stay in
touch with any of their group after leaving. So… sure… we didn’t
really like each other that much.)
our stay, the two schools played a regular season basketball game.
Georgetown was one of our primary rivals, and we were pretty excited
about the game. I won’t make fun of the Hoyas right now (What
is a “Hoya” anyway?), but when we asked them if they were going
to watch the game everyone in their group said no. Evidently,
when you “are as good as (Georgetown), everyone thinks playing
(Georgetown) is a big deal. Playing (Syracuse) doesn’t mean much.”
were pretty snobbish and arrogant actually. You know what? We
really didn’t like each other that much.)
reaction did get me thinking though… why did we think it was such
a big deal? The game. The rivalry. And, was it true? Did Georgetown
play so many big games—and get challenged by so many opponents
that wanted to beat them—that a game against the Orangemen was
no big deal?
is a term that my drivers’ education teacher used so many years
ago. “Velocitized.” His definition was that when you travel an
extended period of time at a certain speed it becomes almost second
nature to you, so that going even a little bit slower or faster
doesn’t feel right. His point was that you can come off the highway,
having been at 55 or 65 miles per hour, and suddenly doing 35
feels wrong even though that is the limit for the road.
Georgetown play so many big games that after a while most turn
into nothing special? I actually can see an argument successfully
made that maybe they do.
telling me what a big deal is and eventually I’m just not going
to believe it any more. While not a big-time program for the past
few years, at the time of these events in the eighties the Hoyas
were just past winning one championship and had played in three
title games over four years. If I had been at their school during
that time I might not have cared much about the regular season.
…I might have grown tired of it if week after week any opponent
talked about a huge game. Wake me up in March.
still think some of it was school pride though, a lot was arrogance,
and a sizeable chunk was not wanting to admit it mattered when
they lost. And in reality, I see most sports fans making up their
own minds about what matters and what doesn’t. Perhaps we cared,
and they did too, thought they just decided not to show it.
mention this now because I think there might be a use for this
term, and you may see me bring it up again and again. Velocitized…
too close to it, too used to it. It has promise.
yeah… I also thought their ambulance was ugly.)
~ ~ ~
the early days of the In My Backpack web site, I was
trying several different ways to present material.
journal entries were referred to as “A Momentary Lapse…” for
a period of time, which eventually transitioned to “Are you
chewing gum?” for a bit. Eventually, after a few restarts, modifications,
and relaunches, the Now Playing area took over.
of occasional segments—appearing perhaps ten times a year or
so—was called Random Thoughts, which I described as…
long for “A Momentary Lapse…”… Not enough for a full article…
Need to get them off my “ideas to work on” list…
essay was originally created and presented as a Random Thoughts
entry. I’m bringing it back as a From the Backpack offering
because I’m curious about the content and the effort. But, worth
noting, it may still seem a bit incomplete, needing more development,
and may or may not have gone through some additional edits and
re-writes beyond my usual finds when searching the archives.