We’re back in Michigan this week, to celebrate Thanksgiving with my folks. It’s been awhile since they’ve seen their one and only granddaughter, and they are loving it. We are catching up on some much-needed rest this week (after all, there’s not really much to do around here other than rest).
As all Michiganders know, Thanksgiving means family, turkey and a Lions football game. My Michigan sports fanhood has been put to the test over the last couple of years. It’s great and all that the Red Wings and Pistons have compiled impressive regular season stats, but when it comes to the post-season, both teams find new ways each season to crush our collective hopes & dreams. Don’t even get me started on U of M. After tanking it early and then mounting a faux-comeback this season, at least they had the decency to put themselves out of contention before bowl season. Usually, they string us along until some New Year’s Day bowl game and then flop.
…which brings us to Thanksgiving. Usually reliable in their wretchedness, the Lions started the first half of this season with a roar. But, after back-to-back losses to the Cardinals (ugh) and the Giants (double ugh) it looks like the typical cycle of denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance has begun all over again. With the resurgent 9-1 Packers’ defense offering bounties on the most-sacked QB in the league (and the Goo Goo Dolls playing the halftime show), things are not looking good for the Lions.
In case all of this bad news has cast a pall over your Thanksgiving weekend, I offer to you this video of Frank Caliendo. I’m no fan of Mad TV, of which Caliendo is an alum, but this series of sports impressions is amazing stuff. It’s not just that he mimics the voices of such notable announcers as John Madden, Jim Rome, Bill Walton and Charles Barkley with such accuracy, but he captures the eccentricity and quirks of each personality. Seriously, his riff on Detlef Schrmpf is worth the price of admission alone.