Friday, February 10, 2012

Week in Review (January 8-14)


Another few weeks have come and gone, and once again, I'm behind!  So let's catch up, beginning with the week of January 8th, which started off a lot worse than it ended.

Monday, the 9th felt like a typical Monday - uneventful; mostly pleasant.  Neil had a big case that morning with a surgeon he's been trying to get into the OR with for over a year and a half.  The case ran smoothly, and the surgeon seemed happy, which is always a good thing.  The rest of the day was pretty slow and quiet.  Then came the BCS National Championship game.

I'll be honest.  I had a pit in my stomach from the moment I woke up Monday morning.  I'm sure it stemmed from LSU/Alabama's November 5th match, which many referred to as "the game of the century."  Anyone who watched it will agree it was tortuous.  We won, but not without a bloody battle.  It really wasn't the fact that we had to fight so hard that put me over the edge.  If anything, a consistently close score and even performance are normally components of really good game.  It was all the back and forth punts, the numerous short and unexciting plays, and the zero touchdowns scored that made me want to pull my hair out.  Both defenses played so incredibly well, that neither offense could move the ball.  By the fourth quarter, I had a pounding headache.  And by overtime, Neil and I were both pacing the room.  I wondered if it would ever end.  Then, finally, with 19 seconds to spare, Alleman kicked a 25-yard field goal, bringing LSU to a 9-6 victory.  Neil instantly grabbed me like a bear, while I burst into tears.  Go ahead, laugh it up.  I know I'm a nut.  I was just so worn down mentally, and so relieved, not just that it was over, but that we had actually won, that I couldn't do anything but cry.  Up to that point, I don't think I'd ever been more emotionally invested in a football game, perhaps with the exception of Superbowl XXIX, when MVP Steve Young led the 49ers to a record-breaking victory against the Chargers.  That game was pretty much a blow-out though, whereas this one was nearly the opposite.  I'm still a bit startled by my level of anxiety over the November 5th game. I suppose it just goes to show how much I've grown to love LSU.  I've been a fan since 2004's Nokia Bowl against OU, which you can read about HERE, but my fandom has grown intensely since then.
Taken just before the first game (05 November 2011). The kids loved having paw prints on their cheeks.
So, jumping back to January 9, 2012: LSU and Alabama, AGAIN.  Part of me was afraid that we were about to face a repeat of the last game, which I really didn't think I could handle.  But honestly, a bigger part of me just had a feeling we were going to lose this time, and I think that was the true source of the pit.  Unfortunately, I was not prepared for the kind of loss that ended up taking place.  Let's just say Neil turned the game off right before 'Bama intercepted the ball and ran it for a touchdown to finish things off, 21-0.  LSU was in the twilight zone.  There was no fire, no passion, no drive; just timidness, fear and a strange sort of frantic disconnection through the entire four quarters.  It was truly bizarre.  Even a single field goal would have saved them an ounce of dignity, but they couldn't even achieve that.  It was awful; the worst football game I've ever watched, and certainly the worst LSU has ever played.  To go from carrying an undefeated record and owning the #1 ranking all season long, to playing like a group of amateurs in the game that mattered most, was surely a let down.  But I'll tell you what!  LSU played an incredible regular season, and that is something to feel good about.  And regardless of what coulda or shoulda happened, or even what's bound to come (which, I am confident will be pure goodness), the Andersens are still forever fans.  It's been in Neil's bloodline for years, and only a passion I inherited upon marrying into the family.  That's right!  I may be a west coast girl, but that doesn't mean I can't love a good Southern football team!  And I do!  GEAUX TIGERS!!!

Chloe, waving the flag I got Neil for Christmas (left); Neil sporting his Christmas presents: hat from Brad and Courtney; shirt from David.

And to add to the satisfaction of Neil's shirt, here's another one for ya. Made me chuckle.
Still makes me laugh, even now.  Clever thinkin' on some one's part!

Yep, we're total dorks.  It's cool.  We had a lot of fun, and made our neighbors laugh.

So, at that rate (that, being the brutal, in-your-face beating we took), the week could only get better, right?  :)  And guess what?  It did.  Neil turned on the sprinklers, or, "sprinkles," as Ryan likes to call them, which obviously means we have continued to have gorgeous weather.  And the warmer weather must have rubbed off on Neil, because this same week, he signed up for the Survival Mud Run in Lathrop April 21st.  Personally, 3.47 miles entailing muddy obstacles sounds miserable, but he's quite excited about it.  It's really right up his alley, so I'm sure he'll enjoy it and do great.

The kids have a new obsession: She-Ra and He-Man.  Now, with the variety of super hero movies and shows Netflixcheesies out there.  Whenever the kids turn on The Secret of the Sword, which is their absolute favorite these days, Neil and I just shake our heads and laugh.  I'm sure there was a time when we thought they were super cool - it was 1985, after all - so I guess we can't criticize too much.  But it sure is funny.

Saturday Chloe was walking around the house carrying two of her dolls, and informed me that she'd had twins and that their names were Adam and Adora.  She and Ryan also kept placing these long foam sticks they have behind them inside their shirts and then pulling them out to fight, as if they were their "sword[s] of protection" and "sword[s] of power."

Ryan has also grown to love and repeat the saying, "By the power of Greyskull!", except Ryan has instead said, "By the power of preschool!"  I can't bring myself to correct him.  It's too cute.  Neil and I are both hoping this obsession with She-Ra and He-Man passes quickly, but we aren't getting our hopes up.


A painful trip to Costco, where I am certain we broke a record for the most money spent in a single Costco transaction in the history of the Neil and Valeri Andersens.
A Starbucks date with Ryan while my car got an oil change next door.
He shared a couple bites of his cinnamon roll, but that was about the extent of it.

Victory, and a ticket to the NFC Championship!!!!!!!!

So now you can see what I meant when I said the week started off a lot worse than it ended!  Yes, LSU lost the BCS Bowl, but the 49ers beat the Saints, earning a place in the NFC Championship!  Never did I imagine 2 things: first, that both of our teams would go SO FAR this season, and second, that it would be possible for the worst football game of all time and also one of the best to be played within 6 days of each other.  This one was intense like November's LSU/Alabama match, but with much more excitement and charisma.  It truly was one of the best football games I've watched.  Oh, that final play, when Vernon Davis, bless his sweet heart, caught that winning touchdown pass from Alex Smith.  It was impossible to not get emotional watching him in the end zone, then in Coach Harbaugh's arms, crying like a baby.  I love seeing the soft and humble side of these big scary players.  It's pretty sweet.

Neil was finishing a crazy 32-mile bike ride with some friends when the game started, so he missed the excitement of the first quarter when the Niners scored 2 touchdowns.  Just before the game started, I took the kids to the grocery store for a few things and, without fail, every time I'd see someone wearing 49ers gear, I'd say, "Go Niners" loud and clear!  Hey, I've got no shame!  This season's been a long time coming and I've been a little excited about it!  And besides, every single person I said it to smiled at me, many repeating it back, including a scary group of Hispanic guys, who I think were caught off guard by my exuberance and willingness to talk to them.  What was even more funny about all this is that every time I'd say, "Go Niners!" (there were a lot of people wearing Niners gear in the store), both Chloe and Ryan would repeat it, so I had my own little army with me, cheering on our team in the middle of SaveMart.  I'm sure someday this side of me will embarrass my kids, but for now, I'll gladly encourage their support!  :)

I did scare Chloe a few times throughout the game, especially near the end when it got crazy.  Neil, Ryan and I were sitting on the couch cheering, clapping and being noisy, while she isolated herself on the floor, pouting and whining that we were being too loud.  Ryan, who wasn't the least bit bothered by our enthusiasm, then said, "Chloe needs a nap because she's really freaking out."  It was so funny.  I did get down on the floor with her several times, explaining why it was so exciting to me and trying to get her pumped.  I also apologized for being loud, but told her I couldn't possibly hold back.  She was completely over it by the end of the game, and cheering with the rest of us, so I don't think she was traumatized.  It was a really fun and exciting game, and I still can't believe we won!   


After falling off the bench at the park and having a good loud cry, I held Ryan close and asked if he was okay.  He angrily shouted: "I want to stick my tongue at someone!"

And, along those same lines, I should mention here that Ryan's current statement/comeback whenever he's mad is, "I don't like anyone!"  Love that kid, even though that's not a very nice thing to say. 

After Neil informed Chloe that we were going to go to Costco, she complained, begging to stay home.  As soon as she realized that we were not going to leave her home alone and that she was indeed coming, she made one last shot at negotiation with this: "Okay, but if we go, that means you have to bring me to the park!"

Saturday (just before the game), as we were pulling into the grocery store parking lot, Ryan asked if he and Chloe could ride the merry go round (just outside the store).  This was after a handful of other requests from both him and Chloe, not to mention endless bouts of whining and complaining.  Because I wasn't feeling inclined to let them have anything they wanted, I muttered, "Gosh, you guys ask for everything!"  Chloe then chimed in with, "I don't ask for tomatoes very often!  Because I don't like them as much as Grandpa Roy!"
Well, I've gotta give her credit for a fast and witty response, however they still did not get to ride the merry go round. 

Well, that was quite the lengthy summary, especially for just one week.  Sorry, but there was a lot to cover.  :)  I'll probably sum up the remainder of the month in my next post.  Until then...

No comments: