I don’t know who took this photo, but it is making the rounds on e-mail through Omaha. This thunderstorm had the power of a level two tornado, and the aftermath sure looked like it. Pretty much all of June has been losing power, late night work, being sick (which I am again this morning), clearing debris from the street and yard, and being in a dark basement waiting for the latest of a string of super storms to move through.
Friday was surreal. No one had power. Everyone in the city headed for 72nd Street since the businesses there usually have power all the time. I was at a packed bar, with people standing outside cheering the power trucks on every time they drove by. The streets were littered with trees, cops, and a carpet of downed leaves.
I got power back late Saturday night. My folks probably won’t power for a week.
June has just sucked. I’m off to get more antibiotics and sleep.
Every fall I’ve been saying this, but I love college football, and I love watching Nebraska play. Though this year was supposed to be different – it was supposed to be the year of Callahan. He’s got his recruits, he’s got them knowing the West Coast plays. There was tangible excitement in the air.
It’s said that the city of Omaha goes into a deep funk immediately after Nebraska loses a game. They won last week against Ball State by one point, and you can feel the gloom hanging over everyone’s head. Christian and I were in Lincoln last weekend just dumbfounded (and fat – we had a lot to eat, like, every quarter); he’s got a good post about what’s wrong with Nebraska football right now. And it is wrong. Sure it was a win, but how come it feels like the better team lost?
And that is Nebraska fans in a nutshell really – the booing last week was not at Ball State, but at the Blackshirt defense. We were upset at our own team. I don’t think I’ve ever been to a game where the opposing team or their fans were treated bad (except possibly Colorado fans – they’re just mean).
Then we’ve got this whole Rosenblatt thing going on. I got Kevin Costner (aka God of Baseball Films) saying we should keep the College World Series at Rosenblatt, and I remember all the good times I had there growing up and watching games. But then again, 20 more years of guaranteed CWS action for a new stadium?
This has been a tough week for college sports fans in Nebraska…
When I was growing up, the west side of Omaha was a strange foreign land, where going south of Dodge or west of 108th was enough to make you feel completely uncomfortable in some instances. I live now in District 66, the west side of town. Taxes are higher, but the schools are nicer, blah, blah, blah.
Sometimes I sit out on my porch in the middle of the night after working and drink a beer in the dark. The neighborhood kids walk by occasionally. Sometimes it is young lovers holding hands. Sometimes it is a couple of kids who have dared to wander down after dark to the local coffee shop a couple blocks down. That is about as much trouble as these kids get into.
Now that school has started, the streets are empty at night. I imagine every kid is at home, diligently doing their homework and longing for the time when they could freely go to the coffee shop around dark.
Not that my neighborhood was tough by any stretch, but when the sun went down all sorts of bad deeds ensued. We would sneak out at night and wander storm sewers or the concrete plant, the body shops or the trailer courts. Getting into fights, running from the cops, smoking cigars until we puked. Drinking stolen liquor. Making out in an elderly couple’s lawn (they never wake up). Whatever. Who cares if school is going on? If anything going back to school amplified our activities.
I drink beer alone in the dark and wonder what happened, or if it is just the neighborhood I’m in. Like a modern day Pleasantville.
Personally, I like drinking beer alone in the dark.
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