by Andy Weddington
Sunday, 24 September 2017
When in doubt wear red. Bill Blass
Yesterday morning, along I-80, heading west, and along back roads, too, we passed fields and fields and fields of corn. The crop dry. Brown. Not yet cut.
Nearing Lincoln, the corn fields gave way to a sea of red.
Trucks and trailers and t-shirts and ball caps and giant red flags with a bold white N and most everything red.
The (Corn) Huskers of Nebraska were playing Rutgers.
The thought "Were they almost named Stalkers or maybe Shuckers?" crossed my mind.
And, "Why red?"
We went downtown to the Haymarket area to witness the pregame hoopla, enjoy a cold beer or two and a bite to eat (grilled salmon avocado salad that I imagined as a double chili cheeseburger all-the-way with fries).
A manager apologized for dessert being late and picked up that expense. We'd not complained to anyone. But the bartender noticed (and must have reported). The young manager was polite and sincere. Refreshing. If visiting downtown Lincoln, patronize Lazlo's.
Red Sea - inside and out.
Tailgaters. Live music. Intoxicated fans. A lot of American flags.
It's been about 30 years since partaking in game day festivities on a campus (Ole Miss).
Not much has changed.
The 96,000 seat stadium was sold out. With tickets going for $100 to $1,000, no thanks. Especially in 95 degrees heat. So we departed for our hosts' home in time to catch kickoff on a big screen from the comfort of a recliner.
Didn't see any players take a knee before our flag and during our Anthem on Tom Osborne Field.
Rutgers beat themselves.
Home late last evening without bothering to catch any news.
This morning more "professional" athletes (and other celebrities) taking a knee. A Wonder took two. Good grief. But none of them can articulate why. Some mumbo jumbo about racism.
(Did you know) 75% of the players in the NFL are black and more in the NBA.
Baseball, tennis, golf, ping pong, and marbles far fewer blacks.
The smaller the balls the less black athletes.
Draw your own conclusions.
The fan base percentages about the same but white.
(Did you know) 75% of the U. S. military is white.
And little more than 17% black.
So whites the protectors and defenders - of everyone; including knee takers.
A couple of other red seas came to mind.
Battlefields and cemeteries.
In closing ...
What a contrast in Saturdays. A week earlier I heard a SEAL speak of being wounded (head/brain injury) by a grenade while on his 12th combat deployment.
Yesterday a red sea of college football.
And this morning more idiocy about knees (that has me seeing red).
There's something dead wrong in America when men (and women), volunteers or not, make multiple combat deployments and other men (and women) living freely under their umbrella of protection take a disrespectful knee before national colors and song.
Want to take a knee?
Visit Arlington, a national cemetery, or any cemetery with a veteran's headstone and take a respectful knee - of gratitude for a man or woman better than you. Better, take both knees.
Our host in Lincoln quips the N on the Husker flag stands for (k)Nowledge.
Apply where applicable.
Today I'm wearing red - with USMC in gold across the chest. A patriot. No doubt. And because on the track across the street (from our home) service men and women - all branches - are completing a 24-hour relay out of respect for POWs/MIAs.
Not a chance in hell.