OSU played Michigan up north yesterday. At high noon. From the riverfront in Cincinnati to the shores of Lake Erie—in every portal of the state—Ohioans were glued to televisions or radios… Well, all but one. Just past kickoff, you see, my brother took his aunt shopping.

Poor planning? (you ask). Emergency? Hardly! In fact, it was Hal’s idea. He preferred it that way.

My brother just can’t take it any more. There’s been so much pain in cheering, so much stress in watching…it’s just easier for H to process the game once results are in.

Not that my bro has suddenly grown old, or that his fanaticism has wained. Nonsense! Just the opposite! Caring deeply, with manifest passion, he finds it too aggravating and too pulsating to be riveted to a screen for three hours. Win or lose, his heart can’t take it. Health must come first!

As Hal puts it: “I don’t want to see Red Right 88 in real time. I don’t want to watch another Drive in real time.”

Life, he suggests, is too short.

To be sure, my brother is nothing if not logical. Similarly, he is not one to dwell in a problem; he finds solutions.

Years ago, and with the advent of Tivo, the man found a way.

H, you see, has a Masters from UNC. Further, over the years he has remained an ardent Tarheel fan. (He may indeed be the only living Jew that prefers Dean Smith to Mike Krzyzewski). But if you think the rhythm of a football game creates tension…consider basketball.

H has a Better Idea. A simple idea, but a BETTER IDEA. He just tapes the games.

With basketball, he’ll check the half-time score. If things look safe, he’ll watch the game from start to finish…and never break a sweat. With football, he’ll opt, (as he did yesterday), to grab a final score before watching. It makes matters so much simpler and life so much easier.

I’m not quite where my brother is. When Wieder married last fall Walt, Mary and I found the TV set, keeping one eye on the reception and one on the tube. And yesterday I did watch the Bucks. The first half. It was still a contest at intermission, but I fell asleep. Waking for dinner, I learned of an OSU victory—no major surprise.

My brother got the score, I would guess, about the same time as me. And as I headed out for a meeting he was probably tuning in for the first half kickoff and a relaxing few hours.

We both enjoyed the game, and, of course, the outcome. Hal? He protected his health. Me? Sad to say: I got old.


  1. Mark E. says:

    Better to watch the Buckeyes than the Browns!

Leave a Reply