Oh boy - classes are formally DONE!!! Even though I didn't have as much to stress about as the rest of everyone else, it still felt good to say "Sweet Mother Freedom!!"

But the Political Science class had to give me one last parting shot of stupidity. The topic of today's lecture was "Church and State" and why religion in the public sector has been controversial as of late. The lecture went on with the usual blather about "no one really knows what the Founders intended" and Supreme Court decisions about religion in schools and what-have-you, when some enterprising, "I'm-a-college-freshman-so-I'm-smarter-than-you" twerp raised her hand and asked (oh, and she was from "back East," if that tells you anything) "How do public schools in Utah get away with letting LDS students have religious instruction during the school day?"

The professor (who is from both California and Massachusetts and didn't raise his kids in Utah) confessed he didn't know anything about it, but then passed the judgment: "It's unconstitutional."

For those who don't know, in Utah (and perhaps in parts of Idaho - I'm not 100% sure) there is a program where public high schools allow students to take one class period as "Release Time" and they go off-campus during the school day to a nearby LDS Church-owned building for a religious class known as Seminary. This is completely optional and voluntary, but, as a Seminary graduate myself, it's a favorite time of day where you can just go and get above all the secular BS that exists in public schools. Outside of Utah (and in the little godless corner of Utah where I spent my senior year of high school) where they don't allow Release Time Seminary, they have Early Morning Seminary where high school kids get up early in the morning and go to either the nearby Church building or a member's home and have Seminary there. As far as Release Time is concerned, there is some accountability (like, you actually have to be where you say you're going to be or you won't be allowed to have Release Time anymore) and it's also opened for students who are doing internships or working during the school day. It's not just for religious purposes.

I'm sure something has happened and I just don't know about it - there are so many anti-Mormon idiots in Utah nowadays - but all we need is a Supreme Court case debating whether or not Release Time Seminary is unconstitutional. *sigh...* Some days, I wonder if Brother Brigham didn't have to the right idea when he tried to make Deseret its own country...

Oh well, enough political crap - it's picture time!!! I'm a day late and a dollar short, but here are the pictures from the basketball game on Wednesday (cut for picspam):

Show Me the True-Blooded Aggie! )

I'm trying to listen to the radio on my computer, but my speakers keep fritzing out. I think some internal component of my speakers is worn out. I'll be listening to something and all of a sudden, the sound will cut out. I have to press down on the right side of my laptop until (if) it comes back on. Just one more evidence that I need a new computer (sigh... Well, Chris pointed out that Christmas is coming and I could ask Santa for his credit card and get something nice for myself ^_^)
(x-posted from Blogspot)

USU-byu basketball game tonight. It was "Adventures in Hardcore Fandom" to the extreme.

First, you have to get in line, which some enterprising individuals started YESTERDAY at 4:30 pm - set up a tent and everything! By 3:00 this afternoon, my roommate called to tell me that the line was around the Spectrum and all the way to the HPER building, so I might want to think about going to stand in line. Also, I was planning on going with some friends who both worked until later, so it would behoove me to go save a place for us.

So, I went. It wasn't too bad - then the sun went down. Holy. Crap. Can you say "Frostbite?" Some people standing next to me in line started playing "Ninja Destruction," a game that should have more movement than it does to keep you warm, but I was still freezing. I texted one of the friends coming with me, asking her to bring a blanket. She texted me back saying she didn't have one, but would I like hot chocolate? She brought the goods - and it was HOT. But I chugged it down like it was Gatorade. It warmed me up for a little while.

THEN - it was finally time to go into the Spectrum. We were dang lucky - I swear they shut the doors right after we swiped our student ID cards. Now a new problem: finding seats. I think some people snuck in without checking their cards, so there were NO SEATS in the student section -_-' We tried to commandeer some season ticket holders' seat - until they showed up :( Then we tried to stand in the aisle without getting caught. But some "nice" people pointed out two empty seats next to them and we took them before security could come clean us out of the aisles (I'll explain why "nice" is in quotations in a moment).

Oh - I made signs for this game. But we were so far up - we were behind the giant American flag in the corner, so if I held up my signs, no one would be able to see them. I compensated by holding them lower - but then the teeny-bopper freshmen behind me (who wouldn't know a basketball from a... never mind...) kept whining that they couldn't see and the "nice" guy next to me kept glaring. But, there were a couple of short Mexican kids in front of me who no savvy loco Americanos and they sat down frequently so I could display my signs without angering the locals.

And this is the best part - a few rows down, another kid had a sign that he kept holding up (it wasn't blocking anything). The "nice" guy next to me yelled for him to put it down, but he didn't hear him (try hearing anything more than six inches away when the Spectrum is in full basketball mode). "Nice" Guy procures an empty water bottle and chucks it at Sign Boy, beaning him on the head. Sign Boy looks around for the culprit - I discreetly jab my thumb in the direction of "nice" guy - Sign Boy sees it and flips "Nice" Guy" off. I felt vindicated. If I couldn't directly annoy byu fans, at least I got the jerk next to me flipped off.

Oh yeah, the game: I will say this - I'm thankful my boys shot poorly in the first half and not in the second half. Every time they let the long bomb go, I wanted to crawl in a hole. I had flashbacks of last Saturday, it was so bad. But we pulled it out and I am happy. The last USU game I attended before I graduated two years ago, we played Idaho and we lost. That was not a happy thing. I'm glad that they won this game, which is the actual last game I got to see as a USU student. The fact that it was byu is icing on the cake.

Even though I didn't get people to see my signs - people in line liked them. Other sign-makers weren't as creative. One doof just wrote "byu isn't very good." I don't want to disparage my fellow Aggies, but what kind of creativity does that take? Another sign said "Cats lick themselves" (WTF?) and one just said "byu swallows." I simply can't believe it - I had at least ten clever ideas and that's the kind of crap you come up with? I think you need to be behind the flag in the nosebleeds.

Though the best one that wasn't mine (face it, mine were pretty good) was "Coach Rose still owes me gas money from last year." There were plenty referencing max hall's idiocy (we even got to chant "Classless" at the few byu dorks that made the trip. I was shocked that they were even there - I thought they could only find Vegas).

All in all - a happy day. Revenge is a dish best served cold (cold here meaning sub-zero temperatures - my thumbs still haven't recovered).

(What kind of name is "Jimmer?" Seriously - what were your parents smoking?)

I have pictures, but it's late and I don't feel like fighting with LJ to get them up here. They are at my Blogspot blog, so you can look there if you have a desperate, burning desire to see them. If not, they'll be up here tomorrow, most likely.
When the Colts play the Patriots, I need to not watch the first half and then the Colts will pound the Patriots well before my blood-pressure goes skyrocketing.

It happened in 2007 - when the Colts played the Pats in the AFC Championship game, I turned off the game at halftime because New England was up a bazillion to 3 and I couldn't stand the Brady bootlicking. Then I turned on to see highlights later... only to find out that the Colts were going to the Super Bowl thanks to some fantastic 2nd half heroics.

It happened in 2009 - just two minutes ago - I turned off the TV partway through the 3rd quarter because Chicken-Neck drooling over the Patriots was making me physically ill. Then Dad called to see if I was watching the game and told me to turn it on because the Colts just might win. Good thing I did because then I could see the wonderful, wonderful-ness of Peyton Manning's last-minute scoring drives.

A few thoughts:

- I hate the Patriots.

- If there was one guy I could count on to screw things up, it's Austin Collie. WAY TO FREAKING GO LASSIE!!! WHY DO YOU DROP A PASS FROM PEYTON MANNING???!!! In the name of all that is good in heaven and earth, WHAT IS WITH THE RETARDED INTERFERENCE CALL???!!! Can't you at least pretend you're making the Utes fans miserable again? The Patriots do have red in their uniforms. I have two words for you: REDEEM YOURSELF!!

- I hate the Patriots.

- Pierre Garcon= LOVE

- Dallas Clark=LOVE!

- Reggie Wayne=DOUBLE LOVE!! (and love for the "Blue Crush" leap a la Lambeau there at the end. Every team needs something like that).

- I hate the Patriots.

- I hate Bill Belichick. I hate Tom Brady. I hate Randy Moss.

- I LOVE the Colts.

- It's interesting that the two 9-0 teams are the Colts and the Saints. For those who are uneducated in NFL history, Peyton's dad, Archie, played for the New Orleans Saints back-in-the-day. They weren't very good then, but obviously they've improved over the years. How would it be if the Colts played the Saints in the Super Bowl? Hm....

- Now Al and Chicken-Neck are talking about the idiocy of Belichick going for it on 4th and 2 - well, it's not hard to figure out. Belichick likes to run the score up on teams. If there's an off-chance he can beat the Colts by more than a touchdown, he'll take it and statistics be damned. Belichick and the Patriots are freaking emotional two-year-olds and they like to win as such. And they're pretty poor losers as well.

- I love how the Colts can win when they have no business winning a game. (see Week 2 vs. Dolphins) How can you not cheer for a team like that?

- I hate the Patriots.

- I LOVE THE COLTS!!

(Austin Collie has some repenting to do)

9-0 SQUEE!!!

ETA: I find it hilarious that, during the post-game press conferences, Peyton Manning is dress like he just played a football game (ball cap, t-shirt) and Tom "Backstreet Boy" Brady is dressed for his next GQ shoot. Something that was pointed out during the game was that Brady and Manning are on a lot of magazine covers. And they showed some samples. Most of Brady's appearances were GQ and Esquire while Manning was on Sports Illustrated and ESPN Magazine. Gee - who's the more focused quarterback? (not to mention I think Peyton's a LOT more attractive than Brady).
THE UTAH JAZZ ARE BACK IN THE WESTERN CONFERENCE FINALS AFTER A NINE YEAR ABSENCE!!!!!  This certainly merits a Chinese-Firedrill-Type lap around the house in complete and total fan-giddiness!!! AAAAAAHHHHH!!!!

I know I ought to be asleep, but who cares?! (blame it on TNT scheduling us for the late game)  I have to post my happiness to the world!!!

The last time I was this excited  was when John Stockton made that three-pointer in the Conference Finals against Houston to send the Jazz to the NBA Finals the first year (the second year, we all knew we were going to cream the Lakers, but it was cool anyway).  This is almost just as fantastic because everyone has been predicting the Jazz would flop out the first chance they got (they tried a couple of times -- I guess they like to keep things interesting for the fans).

This Jazz team reminds me so much of the teams that went to the Finals.  First off, you've got your extremely well-rounded roster of players.  It's not just one or two players running the show.  We have the starting five (Boozer, Williams, Kirilenko, Fisher and Okur -- who my dad affectionately calls "The Goon Squad" [they may not be pretty, but they get the job done]), but then we've got Harpring off the bench (who is brilliant when he's spot-on), Dee Brown who can pick it up when the other guards get in foul trouble, and Paul Millsap (who I want to bake cookies for and I'll explain why in a minute).  Our bench is so deep for when we need to make changes in the lineups or when they just need a break.  Now, back in the day, we had the legendary Stockton-to-Malone, but there was also Jeff Hornacek, Antoine Carr, Bryon Russell, Adam Keefe and even the lovable goober, Greg Ostertag (we never said the center position was our best).

Paul Millsap is a rookie, but he reminds me so much of John Stockton in his attitude and his character.  Maybe it's just because he's a rookie and still learning the ropes, but Millsap can come out, kick your butt and make you like it.  He doesn't show off or anything; he just goes out there and gets the job done.  If he gets a double-double in the process, that's just because that's what's going to win the game for his team.  And he is freaking amazing on the court.  I sincerely hope the Jazz keep him and I hope that he stays this awesome because that's what I miss about Stockton retiring.  I've never liked the NBA going to this showboat-alley-oop-circus-jungle-ball style just to sell tickets.  When Stockton retired, I thought we'd probably lose the last shred of dignity the NBA had, but as long as players like Millsap come along, I think things will be fine. </gush>

Now, I am a dedicated Jazz fan (having watched them rabidly since I was gumming Gerbers), but I do know a challenging situation when I see it and I know when the boys need a little tough love from the fans (not that they're ever going to hear it, but they make enough bone-headed mistakes that it makes me feel better).  We're going to end up playing either Phoenix or San Antonio, neither of which is going to be a cake walk, especially since we won't have home court advantage no matter who we end up playing.  All season long, the Jazz have played a lot of close games.  Some they won, but some (especially in the home stretch at the end) they gave up.  Tonight was pretty darn hairy.  For a few minutes, it looked like the only two who didn't want to go back to Golden State were Fisher and Kirilenko (how do you miss a set of three free throws from flagrant and technical fouls?!)  If we get San Antonio, history is not on our side.  I don't think the Jazz have won on the road in San Antonio since 1994 (I could be wrong on my year, but it's somewhere in that general area).  Phoenix is wickedly amazing and either one is going to be tough to beat.  I certainly don't think we'll be scared, but looking at the situation realistically, it's going to be hard and I wouldn't be surprised if we didn't make it (surprised, no; disappointed, yes).

On the other hand, if we did win and make it to the Finals, I would be able to turn and go NEENER, NEENER to all those fair-weather fans who only follow the Jazz when they're good and who told me that it was stupid to cheer for a team when everyone I grew up watching was gone and that it was stupid just to cheer for a logo and assorted other bullshit that I hate taking from all these retarded bandwagon jumpers.

I can dream, can't I?

Love from,
Jenny Wildcat

PS, I have another reason for wanting the Jazz to continue: Anything to keep Dave Checketts and the incredibly stupid Real Salt Lake soccer team off the major sports headlines.  The only good thing about this asinine venture is that the team bears only Salt Lake City's name and not Utah's.  I'm not from Salt Lake City and hence, have no obligation to cheer for them.  I am from Utah, so I can happily cheer for the Utah Jazz, the Utah Blaze arena football, the University of Utah and Utah State University.  See the difference?

The Indianapolis Colts are going to the Super Bowl!!!!111!1!

I already did it on my MySpace blog and profile (you'd think I was happy about this or something), but the good news needs to be spread all over my sphere of influence on the 'net.  The Colts beat the Patriots 34-38 and I am just giddy-drunk with excitement!

For all the naysaying and all the weenie-boys at CBS predicting a Patriots dynasty (evidently, three Super Bowl wins in the last five years counts as a dynasty to some people... and next year, it'll be all about how they've won three Super Bowls in the past six years... o_O) and all the talk about how Peyton Manning can't win the big games, we finally get to shut the analysts up and we get to shut the Patriots fans up (which, I've been trying to do since 2001).

The sad thing is that I think I jinxed the first half.  I watched the Patriots score first and I watched the Patriots fumble the ball and the Colts "recover", but somehow the Pats ended up with it in the endzone (the lineman of all people... I ask you...)  I watched until the Patriots intercepted the ball and made the score 21-3.  I agonized and fumed and cursed Tom Brady and Bill Belichick and the Colts' defense and the CBS commentators and finally had to turn off the TV because I would not be able to stand watching my fellow Colts fans look so pitiful and the Patriots celebrate.  So, I worked on my memoir for my Creative Non-Fiction class (which is another monster altogether).  I finished that and turned the TV back on and saw that the Colts had scored a few more times, but I was in time to watch the Patriots run a kickoff back for a touchdown.

Disgusted with myself and figuring I was the bad luck, I turned the TV off, but it didn't last long because, like any good fan, I Just Couldn't Stand It!  I got up the guts to watch one more play and, as I turned on the TV, I could hear Indy fans cheering, saw Brady throw the ball and...  one of the Colts caught it!!! I didn't even see who it was; all I could see was a blue-and-white jersey over the football, Peyton Manning come off the bench in celebration and hear the RCA Dome explode.  Right there (and
[profile] shellic can attest to this) I WENT NUTS!! The last time I jumped up and down so crazy like that was when the last time the Jazz went to the Finals.

It's easier to tell the ensuing insanity in a bulleted list:
  • My nine-year-old cousin is a HUGE Patriots fan.  We have not been able to convert him from the dark side, but I called and told my sister to give him a few "NEENER-NEENER"s for me.  Mom, however, told me to be nice and classy, even though my cousin never was/is.  Tell you what, you be classy.  I have a few noogies to hand out.
  • Speaking of class (or a lack thereof), why couldn't Belichick just shake Peyton Manning's hand on the way out?  Murgh...
  • I finally have a team to cheer for instead of against in the big game.  I don't think that's happened since the Raiders were in the Super Bowl.  It's been cheer against the Patriots or the Seahawks, but I finally get to cheer for a team that I like.
  • All season, I've watched Peyton Manning put on that Colts ballcap when he's on the sideline and after games, but it looks pretty good to see him put on a "Colts AFC Champions" hat and shirt.  It'll look even better when it says "Colts Super Bowl Champs"
  • As much as I've cheered against him when he was a Patriot, it's nice to have Adam Vinatieri on your side.  Especially after last week against the Ravens.
  • And I have to give mad props to our defense.  After all the analyst crap about how the Colts are just Peyton Manning and the offense, the defense has really stepped up in the playoffs.  It's kind of like a sleeping giant analogy or something clever like that (I think my adrenaline starting to wear off.  I'm, becoming less and less snappy)
  • Have I mentioned that Peyton Manning is a freaking good football player?  Not to mention a hard worker?  Not to mention a really great and funny guy?  Not to mention cuter than Tom Brady? (spoken like a true female sports fan ^_^  Seriously, Tom Brady looks like a boy-band reject.  Peyton's got this down-to-earth charm that just...sigh...works)
  • Tony Dungy and Lovie Smith (the coach of the Chicago Bears who are the NFC Champs, by the way) are good friends.  They're playing each other in the Super Bowl.  They're also the first African-American coaches to play in the Super Bowl.  Hm... that's cool.  I guess that'll give the analysts something to hash over in the ensuing days.
  • The Colts Are Going To The Super Bowl!!!!!  The only thing that could make it sweeter was if they beat the Patriots to get there... oh that's right: THEY DID!!!11!
  • I think interjecting 1s into my series of exclamation points is starting to get old...
And I think it's funny that this is really the first time I've blogged about professional football and my loyalties thereto.  Just a random observation.  In the meantime... Go Colts!

Love from,
Jenny Wildcat
Whee!!! Utah State won in a nail-biter against Boise State last night!  And I actually got to storm the court this time!  I might have been on TV, but I don't know because my parents jinxed the game in the second half by turning on the TV and decided not to watch the rest of the game (feh...)  I'm pretty sure I was on TV because I ran right across the camera on my way down to a rousing rendition of a one-handed, mid-court Scotsman (I had to carry my coat).  My throat still hasn't recovered.

Anyway, I'm sure we'll be the topic of another blog down in the Wasatch Front saying how freakin' obnoxious Aggies fans are (just because we called George Karl's son a "daddy's boy"?  C'mon, he came to Utah to see a basketball game; he ought to know better, having been a coach in the NBA's Western Conference).

I was pretty sure we were going to lose, though.  Boise State could do no wrong (dang it).  They were hitting wild three-pointers and all their foul shots and getting rebounds.  On the other hand, we were... not.  I think it was right after the KJZZ broadcast showed that the Aggies win when Jaycee Carroll gets more than 20 points in a game that he started kicking it into high gear (can someone explain this to me: why is the big screen showing the TV broadcast of the game we are attending?  Is Larry H. not selling as many butt-ugly hybrid cars or whatever these days?)  That was when the game had about two minutes left and we were down by about eight points and Boise State was kicking our butts.  Some people were even leaving early (what's wrong? Don't you believe?)

Well, we won despite the really good Boise State team and the terrible officiating.  When one team have 5 fouls and the other has only 2, there is a problem.  But that's all I'll say about that.

Since, my one and only Friday class was canceled today (the one that I was stressing to get everything done for... bleah) and I'm leaving for some family deal this weekend, I'm going to try to get some homework done before I leave.

Love from,
Jenny Wildcat

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