Fill in the blanks

Here’s what I missed blogging about in a more timely fashion:

Monday Nov. 24

Most of the day spent in room 1110 of the Wichita Marriott. Not that it was a bad thing. I only left my room briefly to go to Dillon’s–I am now addicted to cheddar French fried onions, from French’s no less–and pick up my big meal of the day at Chick-Fil-A a the corner of Central and Rock across the street from Dillon’s. The Chick-Fil-A in east Wichita is one of the busiest in the United States, and has been known to have cars spilling out onto Central in the drive-thru lanes. Chick-Fil-A has two drive-thru lanes to handle the volume.

The Saints were playing host to the Ravens on Monday Night Football, but I largely passed to watch reruns of Battle of the Network Stars on ESPN Classic. For some strange reason, I watched a bunch of reruns of Network Stars on the Monday following the state track and field meet, the last time I stayed at the Wichita Marriott.

Gregory Harrison, who played Gonzo Gates on Trapper John M.D. from 1979 through 1985, was the best athlete in the competition, and he often carried CBS, although CBS finished last in one of the two airings. Gregory went on to marry Randi Oakes of CHiPs, who was part of the NBC team in those Network Stars airings. Oakes was in a long-term relationship with Joe Namath from 1972 through 1976. She got tired of Namath getting too close to stars like Raquel Welch, Cybill Shepherd and Ann Margaret. Oakes and Harrison are still married. Harrison may be known to a younger generation as Paul Norris, Julian Baker’s dad on One Tree Hill.

When I watched in June, I was enthralled by the athletic feats of Judy Norton Taylor, who starred on The Waltons. I also remember Norton Taylor appearing on several game shows of the 1980s, including Chain Reaction. Howard Cosell, who hosted Network Stars, described Norton Taylor as the best female athlete the competition has witnessed, and he was right.

Tuesday, Nov. 25

Spent the day working in the room. Had to get Russell done early because of the holiday deadlines, which I did. By 3:30, I was totally relieved to have it all done, meaning I could relax the rest of the evening and enjoy a stress-free ride back to Russell the next day.

God, I’m addicted to French fried onions. I didn’t find any cheddar onions at the Dillon’s on Central, so I went to the store on 21st and Rock, and sure enough, there was a huge display. Loaded up.

Ate Outback for the sercond time on the trip. Great food.

Wednesday, Nov. 26

Left Wichita just after 11 and got to Russell shortly before 2. Stopped in Salina for gas and snacks. Went straight to the barber shop in downtown Russell to get my haircut.

Had Thanksgiving dinner with my parents tonight, since they will be taking my grandfather and his companion Betty to the Elks in Russell for lunch tomorrow. Fried turkey was great as always, as was the oyster dressing, baked macaroni and sweet potatoes.

I’m not complaining in the least my father’s family and mother’s family are separated by over 1,000 miles. I don’t enjoy family get-togethers. Not at all. I prefer it the way we have it.

Thursday, Nov. 27

Slept very late today. My parents were already back from the Elks by time I went upstairs for the first time. Ate leftovers and watche LSU-Texas A&M football at night. Not much else to report.

Friday, Nov. 28

Slept late again. Leftovers. Arkansas-Missouri football on the tube. Other than that, a yawner.

Saturday, Nov. 29

Kansas held its 11-man football state championship games at various sites. I hardly noticed. Didn’t check on any scores until well after the games were over.

Watched the ending to Georgia Tech-Georgia. Big win for the Yellow Jackets in overtime. Hope they can beat Florida State in the ACC championship game.

Kept tabs on Auburn-Alabama, but also watched things other than football.

Sunday, Nov. 30

Ate lunch with my parents at home. Roast and mashed potatoes was a welcome relief from turkey. Watched the NFL. Chiefs stunk it up.

Monday, Dec. 1

Had to leave Russell before 7:30. My dad had a heart procedure scheduled at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City (KCK). My mother does not like driving through the Flint Hills between Junction City and Topeka, and since I had nothing else to do, I agreed to drive. I cleaned up my car inside so they didn’t have to put up with filth.

The drive was very uneventful. Found the hospital right away. I dropped my parents off and then went to the Barry Road corridor. I dropped off a letter at Buffalo Wild Wings, but did not go in. Went to the bank and Hy-Vee, then drove back to KCK to wait.

Two things about the wait. First, a man stayed in the restroom at the 7-Eleven on 39th Street for an eternity. I waited for over 10 minutes, but gave up and went to the Taco Bell next door. Bathroom at Taco Bell was cleaner.

Second, I went by Joe’s Kansas City, formerly Oklahoma Joe’s, a barbecue restaurant in a gas station at the corner of 47th and Mission Road. People have sworn it’s the best barbecue on earth, but I have my doubts. The line was 40 to 50 deep and there was nowhere to park. If I have to wait for food, it had better be earth shattering. Barbecue isn’t my thing.

Everything went well. Stopped to eat at Chick-Fil-A near the Kansas Speedway for a late lunch, then ate at Chili’s in Salina for dinner. My parents were very happy with my choices. Got home just before 7.

Tuesday, Dec. 2

Couldn’t get going early, and that put me behind in my work. Got it done, though, and then went to sleep for awhile.

My parents were stumped about an actor who played in the movie 42, which chronicled Jackie Robinson’s rise to the Major Leagues. They were trying to figure out who played a detective on the 1970s sitcom Barney Miller. I told them it was Max Gail, who played Wojo. My parents were very impressed. Barney Miller premiered before I was born, and it ended a few months before my sixth birthday, so I would not have remembered it. Guess all the aimless surfing pays off sometimes.

Wednesday, Dec. 3

Would have slept in, but I had to get most of my work done for Russell early. I had an 8:30 a.m. appointment with my ophthalmologist, Dr. Stacey Jones, in Hays, and I wanted to get as much as I could done before she dilated my pupils, which would put me out of commission for three to four hours.

Mission accomplished. Got most of the work done, went to see Dr. Jones, then went to Quest Diagnostics to get bloodwork done for Dr. Custer. Also picked up prescriptions at Walgreen’s before returning to Russell.

Left Russell just after 3. No trouble on the trip to Kansas City. Then came the trouble last night.

I promise not to have long gaps if I can help it again.

About David

I am a sportswriter for a group of weekly newspapers in small towns across northern Kansas. I grew up in New Orleans, went to college at LSU and wandered in the wilderness until Hurricane Katrina finally put me on the path to my current job.

Posted on December 4, 2014, in College Football, National Football League, Personal and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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