Many families have Thanksgiving traditions. Some have a family football game in the back yard. Some have small gatherings with small meals. Apparently some now shop all day, making it one new holiday tradition to get the biggest deal possible for the next holiday. I get to celebrate Thanksgiving with my mom, uncle, and two generations of cousins that I usually only get to see once a year. Not a bad tradition if you ask me.
Oh, there's plenty of time for football. I could have gotten up and watched the first NFL game on Thursday. Detroit won on the holiday for the first time in a decade, but I was up late talking to mom the night before, and wasn't too interested in the game anyway. I was driving to LaVerne and my cousin Diane's and her husband Wen Hai during most of the Oakland-Dallas game, but who wants to watch the two most over-hyped franchises in all of sports? I heard the Baltimore-Pittsburgh game was good, and there was some kind of controversy surrounding Steelers coach Mike Tomlin. By then, though, I was too busy eating turkey (and potatoes, and stuffing, and green beans, and yams, and biscuits, and gravy, and two types of cranberry sauce, and three kinds of jello) to notice. That late game is a great idea for those back east who have probably finished eating, but on the west coast, there were still three different kinds of pie to get through before I even remembered there was a game, let alone wondering who won.
Friday, another family event at my uncle's in Burbank, but not a lot of football on, anyway. Uncle Marty did insist on taping the Lakers-Pistons game, which I saw a little bit of. I found out the next morning that the Lakers had won, and congrats to them for being over .500 for the first time since they beat the Clippers on Opening Night. I'm still having a hard time getting into the NBA this year. Maybe when Kobe comes back. Maybe not.
Now Saturday was football day. Kickin' back at mom's, I (intentionally) slept through the first half of Ohio State-Michigan, but saw the Wolverines come back from two scores, and go for a two-point conversion for a win instead of an extra-point to put the game in overtime. They missed, Ohio State won, and are still alive for a National Championship. Next was what I figured to be the game of the day, but no one could have predicted this. Auburn returns a missed field goal over 100 yards for a winning touchdown, and an upset over number one Alabama. Except for maybe in Canadian football, I've never seen a missed field goal returned for a score, never mind to win the game. Nothing could top that game, but a UCLA 35-14 trouncing of crosstown rival USC was a nice way to end the night. I actually feel bad that Ed Orgeron didn't get the full time coaching gig at 'SC. The Trojans hired Washington's Steve Sarkisian today.
Sunday, and the drive back to Marysville, but not without football. I left at 8am, but still listened to the first half of the Rams-Niners game before making it back. That game was boring with San Francisco leading, so I watched the second half of Broncos-Chiefs in my own apartment. Nice weekend, great visit with the family, topped off with the perfect dose of football.
Baseball beat: The hot stove heats up this coming weekend with the MLB winter meetings in Orlando, but there have already been some major announcements today alone. (Former Gold Sox opponent) Doug Fister was traded from Detroit to Washington for three players, and left-handed pitcher Scott Kazmir has signed a two-year deal with Oakland. Also, just announced as I'm writing this, the A's sent infielder Jemile Weeks to Baltimore for closer Jim Johnson. In case you missed it last week, the Detroit Tigers shipped Prince Fielder to Texas for Ian Kinsler, and the Angels acquired third baseman David Freese from the Cardinals for Peter Bourjos. Play ball!
Holiday wrap-up: My cousin Alayna works at Pac Sun, and did a 12-hour shift starting at 11pm Thursday night. She says the deals weren't too good, but I guess they were good enough to draw shoppers at all hours... With Black Friday starting on Thursday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, my cousin Alivea pointed out that they have successfully commercialized the one holiday that wasn't about commercialism.
Above Photo: Wen Hai and Uncle Marty carving up the turkeys (one fried, one roasted, both delicious). Let's eat!!