Sometimes the seemingly unending hours in an SUV make me forget how lucky we are to be doing what we're doing.
It’s that time of year again.
Sometimes the seemingly unending hours in an SUV make me forget how lucky we are to be doing what we’re doing. For the second straight March, my sports editor and I have been driving around the state almost every day and only stopping when we find a local team competing in the playoffs.
After trips to Tulsa on Thursday and Edmond on Friday, we went to both Tulsa and Edmond on Saturday.
Cover a game at 3 p.m.
Upload the content to the website and page designers.
Cover another game an hour and a half away. Repeat.
Thanks to so many area teams qualifying for the State Tournament, we get to do it all again this week.
Hopefully the craziness lasts through Saturday when the champions are crowned.
Sunday afternoon – during some rare down time - I was watching my favorite Thanksgiving movie, “Planes, Trains and Automobiles” – I know it’s March and there are probably only three actual Thanksgiving movies in existence, but I was watching it anyway.
It’s a really funny show that came out when I was in high school. The movie has aged pretty well, except for the lack of smart phones causing characters to use pay phones. Another funny scene that wouldn’t seem real to kids today is when Dell had to call a friend in Kansas and get his son to come pick the duo struggling to get home for the holidays to a train station.
Today, he would have simply used his Uber app and they would never have met Owen and his wife – “She’s short and skinny, but she’s strong. Her first baby came out sideways. She didn’t scream or nuthin.”
Owen was also the person who let the two traveling salesmen who had been pushed around the country by snowstorms know that “the train don’t run out of Wichita, lessin you’re a hog or a cattle.” Luckily, Owen did know where the “people train” ran out of and delivered his passengers there in the bed of his old beat up Chevy pickup.
That scene seems entirely implausible, but I am here to tell you that it could happen. In fact, something very similar did happen about 10 years ago to my family.
I had just taken the Publisher job in Augusta, Kan.
about 20 miles east of Wichita – believe it or not. I’m still not sure if the “people train” runs out of Wichita or if it really is just for hogs and cattle. Instead of coming home one weekend, my parents brought my wife and three-year old son to help find a home for us to buy.
After we found a home and got the purchase process started, they headed back to Oklahoma. On the way, as fate would have it, they struck a deer.
They noticed the antifreeze rapidly leaving the radiator and decided they better find somewhere to leave the car quickly.
When they did, they called my brother in Oklahoma City to see if he could come and pick them up. They were near the Kansas border so I am sure my brother wasn’t excited about the trip.
Luckily – I’m not sure luckily is the right word, but I’m going with it – some pig farmers were at the rest stop in Blackwell, Okla. where my parents were leaving the car before it could be towed to a repair shop Monday morning.
The farmers offered them a ride down I-35 as far as Guthrie. That would save my brother about three hours round trip, so my parents, wife and child piled into the back seat of that super cab pick-up and hit the road.
They were lucky because they could have had to ride in the bed of the truck like the guys in the movie.
Either way, seeing what people have had to do to get from Point A to Point B helps me not to dread the trips all over the state to cover high school athletes doing what they do best.
Just in case, I’m going to find out what city the "people train runs through.”