Wednesday, December 01, 2010
Chinook: Maybe Cold, But Not Crooked
There’s no arguing that I’m not a controversial person, but the one thing I’ve always strived for is to avoid controversy when it comes to this particular blog. That said, I have come up short a couple times—last week would be one of those times.
I’ve had plenty of time to consider this, but earlier this week (you might say) brought me to my knees.
First, I learned—attributed to a couple of unsolicited phone calls from disgruntled Chinook fans—my boss, Northwest College Vice President of Academic Affairs, Bob Krenz has decided to break the link from the college web site to this blog in an attempt to deflect any “harm” that might find the college. Admittedly, I’m hardly crushed. After all, as far as this project goes, I suspect there are few people in the sandstone towers of NWC who really give a toss whether or not I travel 300 miles to a small town high school football game in Montana or Wyoming via icy and snow-covered roads. My impression over the years has always been that the NWC powers-that-be see little-to-no benefit in the extracurricular activities of its employees—and thus, prefer to have the public only know of its “esteemed” faculty in a sterile, unimaginative, one-dimensional plane. So be it and so much for "shared governance (again)."
Second, and more importantly, I received a phone call from a Chinook football mom who wasn’t satisfied with leaving only a comment on this blog. She clearly went out of her way to speak to me personally, so as soon as I heard her voice, I was determined to hear her out and keep my interruptions at bay—or at least to a minimum.
I learned that despite my damage-control efforts in the comments section of the previous blog, her biggest concern about the entry was that I had come across as doubtful or critical of the Chinook state football title because some of the players (including her son) were painted as employing non-regulation equipment (i.e., illegal cleats).
That is unfortunate and regrettable.
Hoping to not re-open a sensitive wound here, I can say that if I could do it all over again, I would have delayed the post until I heard back from my sources regarding my query on the rules and regulations of cleats. Had I done that, there would have been no need to use that two-sentence parenthetical text that said, “(More importantly are those even legal? Click on the image below to see for yourself.).” However, I was concerned (and impatient) that no one would reply promptly, so I posted the blog knowing that I could follow up later with the details of cleat regulations in the comment section once I heard back from my sources—which is exactly what I did. Yet, for whatever reason, that didn’t cut the mustard.
So, persuaded by this recent Sugarbeeter lobby, I believe it’s important to go a little out of my way here to acknowledge the legitimate title won by the Chinook Sugarbeeters in Class C eight-man football—which I’m happy to do and humbled that my input even matters. Further, it was never my intention to dispute the Chinook victory either, but rather to consider the validity or gravity of a few of the variables in the game that showed up that particular day.
Lastly, I think many have given me way too much credit for the things I’ve said here, whether they agree or disagree because, in my mind, once the dust settles and blogs like this vaporize, nothing speaks louder or truer through the years than a state championship trophy sitting in a school’s trophy case.
Congrats to all the fine folk in Chinook and their state championship football team.