Twas The Night Before Hysteria

Twas the night before Hysteria
and all through the Hall
not a player was stirring
not even a ball.

The banners were hung
behind the baskets with care
in hopes that a sixth
would soon be there.

The Hoosiers were nestled
all snug in the beds
while visions of March Madness
danced in their heads.

And mama in her candy stripes
and I in my sneaks
had just settled down
for some tall Autumn drinks.

When out on the court
there arouse such a clatter
I sprang from my tailgate
to see what was the matter.

Away to the gym
I flew like a flash
tore open the doors,
handed the usher some cash.

The moon on the breast
of the new fallen leaves
gave the luster of gameday
to practice's 5-man weave.

When what to my wandering eyes
should appear
but a squad full of Hoosiers
dressed in new Adidas gear.

With a middle-aged coach
so lively and tan
I knew in a moment
it was the state's highest-paid man.

More rapid than ligers 
his wing players they came
and he clapped and paced
and called them by name.

Now Yogi! Now James! Now Hanner & Troy!
On Stan! On Devin! On Rob and you Indiana boys!

To the top of the key
to the back of the Hall
deflect away, deflect away,
deflect away those balls!

As in empty gyms that
before 3-balls let fly
the Big Red Band took its seat
their songs soared to the sky.

So up to the balcony top
the raucous crowd grew
as the recruits filled the stands
-and Saint Tijan, too.

And then in a twinkling
I heard on the PA
the opening riffs of
Where the Streets Have No Name.

As I pulled out my flask
and was drinking it down
when out from the tunnel
your Indiana Hooooooosiers came with a bound.

They were dressed in their warm-ups
from their heads to their feet
when the stands then erupted
and rose from their seats.

The script Indiana
was drawn on their backs
when they huddled together
in a tight, crimson pack.

Chuck Crabb took the mic
and started the show
one by one he called them off
their names we all know.

Then the boys took to the floor
and the crowd screamed from the top of their lungs
when the band played the fight song
Indiana, Our Indiana was sung.

Then the coach took center court
his shirt untucked around his belly
that shook when he clapped
like a bowl full of jelly.

He was bronzed and excited
a half-crazy elf
but I cheered when he addressed us
in spite of myself.

A wink of his eye
and a twist of his head
then Blackmon hit a jumper
and I knew we had nothing to dread.

We spoke not a word
as the team rained down threes
and filled up the bucket
with dunks that brought us to our knees.

And placing 3 goggles
in front of both eyes
they turned to back to the tunnel
amidst the fans' cries.

They ran off the floor
to the crowd they waived
into the locker room they jogged
knowing this state is basketball-crazed.

But I heard them exclaim
as they ran out of sight
Happy Hysteria to all
and to all a good night.

The Dustin Dopirak Exit Interview

Wherein Dustin and I spend a night on his porch and look back at his days in B-town.

Season's Greetings!

Thankful for the year that saw B-town blessed with some Big Ten championships, the Bucket & the CWS. Looking forward to many more in 2014!

Happy holidays from our home to yours. 

Chronic's Bracket Challenge

March in Indiana. Tis the season for dancin' shoes and copious amounts of booze.

Thus, it's once again time to uncork Chronic's Bracket Challenge.

The rules are simple:
1) Register & submit your entries here.
2) Winner receives an autographed bottle of the Nectar of the Gods at the completion of the tournament*.
*Winner must verify legal drinking age to receive the goodness (otherwise minors receive cash equivalent) and live within the continental US.

Good luck.