Whether you're at the end of your rope or merely the end of your week, welcome to Whitt's End:
*If you're a TCU fan, it goes down like this: Alabama beats Auburn today at 1:30 on CBS. Arizona beats Oregon tonight at 6 on ESPN. And Nevada beats Boise State tonight at 9:15 on ESPN. Oh yeah, and Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee and his ridiculously narrow-minded view chokes on a turkey leg.
*I know the NBA in November is all but meaningless, but Mavericks' consecutive games against the Spurs tonight and Heat tomorrow night is pretty appetizing. Especially on a Cowboys-free weekend.
*In the latest voting for the Pro Bowl, there are no Cowboys leading their position or in the top 10 overall. (Peyton Manning is the leading vote-getter, followed by ... Michael Vick.) Dallas has sent at least four players each year since 2001, but I can't think of a single player - maybe receiver Miles Austin or punter Mat McBriar? - who is playing at an elite level. Voting ends at NFL.com December 20. That said, I can't remember the last time I've thought of long-snapper L.P. Ladouceur. That's 92 consecutive games without a bad snap?
*Some uplifting financial news regarding Cliff Lee. Doesn't really pertain to the Rangers' pursuit of the coveted free agent, but warm-n-fuzzy nonetheless. Lee and his wife, Kristen, have donated $1 million to an Arkansas children's hospital. Their son, Jaxon, battled cancer as an infant but is healthy today.
*Back in 1988 the Fort Worth Star-Telegram's Mavericks beat writer was skipping a road trip. I was asked to take it in his place. Simple. He handed me the ticket and - voila - I was suddenly Roger B. Brown. At the gate the airlines agent didn't ask for an ID - "Hello, Mr. Brown" - and only posed to me two questions: Window or aisle? And, I swear, smoking or non-smoking? Makes me feel ooooollllllld that I used to fly on planes in which the back three or four rows were designated for smokers. Now comes a study that says second-hand smoke kills 600,000 people a year. Won't there be a time in our lifetime when we look at smoking as incredulously as we do TVs without remote controls?
*That turkey and dressing with gravy yesterday invaded your gut with about 600 calories. How are you going to burn that off? Reading Whitt's End is a start, albeit a slow one. By the time you're finished you'll have burned about 35 calories. Seconds?
*Of all the ESPN yackers, the one bugging me the most these days is Marcellus Wiley. Not only does he riddle his embarrassingly generic analysis with "axe," last night he offered this when attempting to describe his love of the New England Patriots' throwback uniforms: "The Gary Hogebooms! I love the Gary Hogebooms!!" What. The. Frick?! Is he trying to say the hiking Patriot on the helmet resembles the former Cowboys' quarterback or is he simply confusing Hogeboom with old New England quarterback Steve Grogan?
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*What's more surprising: the Cowboys' season or the fact that Texas - thanks to last night's loss to Texas A&M - will not go to a bowl and just had the first losing season in the Mack Brown era?
*Given the overtures from NFL and NBA execs and players about impending work stoppages, it's a real possibility that on July 1, 2011 we will be without active football or basketball leagues. No games at that time obviously, but still, scary.
*In light of a text apology from Vince Young, Titans' coach Jeff Fisher says he doesn't "twit or tweet" and that talking face-to-face is a "man thing." Vomit, fake tough guy. I'm assuming he's also one of these down-to-Earth geezers who refuses to partake in online banking or drink bottled water or drive anything but a dusty, 4x4 pickup because he's so damn masculine.
*This weekend? Let's go giggle at the Miami Heat's failure Saturday night at AAC and, at some point, find time to put up the Christmas tree. Don't be a stranger.