I spent ten minutes waiting in line at the receptionist’s desk while she and the customer before me argued over whether the South region was aligned with the West or Midwest. When they started arguing the merits of Gonzaga and West Virginia, I was forced to adapt the role of Mr. Buttinski.
I, of course, needed to get back to my inner sanctum, because I had my own bracket to attend to.
It is that time of year, when, as surely as they will drag out the Selection Sunday Show to sell as much merch as possible, it is followed by an epidemic of bracketosis. Since the disease is nationwide, it is technically a pandemic. But the strain that strikes Hoopsylvania is especially virulent and invasive.
By the by, ladies, I like the Mountaineers playing in Pittsburgh to zap the Zags.
* * * * *
What is fascinating is the disease also strikes ex-patriots.
Loyal reader Wildcat Willie now resides in Augusta, Ga. While he has been called before an inquisitor hired by the City Council, because he is not totally immersed in the upcoming Masters, he has found one back alley medical specialist who will treat him for this hoops related ailment.
The doc prescribed a day off — Thursday, to be exact — and assured my pal, after going over his bracket choices, that the disease would abate and he would have full recovery by the end of the first round.
* * * * *
When a contractor my bride and I have used for house renovations came by yesterday to give us an estimate on some new work we’re contemplating, he admitted he’d never filled out a bracket.
Nor has there ever been a NCAA pool in his office.
Aghast, the Film Babe and I immediately huddled, to contemplate whether we needed to rethink our choice of contractors. Then we remembered that the only other person in his office is the bookkeeper and that she was born in Germany, or some place like that. And that the fellow not only is honest and does great work, but is a stand up fellow.
So, we’re allowing him to go forward with the estimate, even though we are having a hard time conceptualizing a long time Hoopsylvanian who does not fill out a bracket.
* * * * *
Though I’m sure Rick Santorum will find some sort of Commie Plot behind the whole matter, be advised that the President of the United States, bracketosis-stricken, hoops-addicted Barack Obama, even has an online bracket challenge.
And you can find it here.
* * * * *
Here’s another truth.
I’ve never done shit in an NCAA pool. Imagine your surprise.
The joke, of course, is that the office pool is most always won by the mousey gal with thick glasses in Accounting, the one who eats her daily lunch of pimento cheese on crustless wheat bread by herself at her desk. The reality is that the office pool is always won by the mousey gal in Accounting with thick glasses, etc, etc.
What we forget from annum to annum is her daughter was back up point guard for the Immaculata Mighty Macs in ’72.
* * * * *
So, who do I like, you might ask?
Well, I like the Cards and the Racers and the Hoosiers. And hope the Toppers win tonight so they can face the Cats on Thursday.
Who I think will win is another matter? I’m taking it a day at a time to follow the dictates of a philosophy which guides my life.
Western Kentucky opens with a Mississippi Valley State team that is tested tough. The Delta Devils from Itta Bina — I’ve been there for a football game — played a monster schedule of guarantee games in December, finishing that portion 1-11. They haven’t lost much since. They are coached by Sean Woods, who, if God weren’t such a Duke fan, would have been the winning shot maker in THAT game 20 years ago.
Ray Harper’s got his Hilltoppers going in the right direction and a W tonight would be the cherry on top of a fairy tale season turnaround. (To egregiously mix some metaphors.)
As for tonight’s other First Four matchup, I like Iona. Because, well, because it’s the Year of the Gael in the Dance, what with not one but two schools competing with that obscure Scottish mascot.
Besides, I looked over the shoulder of that gal in Accounting while she was xeroxing her bracket and that’s whom she likes.
When dealing with bracketosis, one must use all resources possible for treatment.
– Seedy K