Getting our Crappy selves to Chicago for the Dead/Trey shows isn’t happening, but we’re looking at a pretty good musical run in the coming weeks nonetheless. And that’s a good thing — I know I can really use the break.
What’s coming? I’m so glad you asked:
Sunday: moe., at Mr. Small’s. They’re pretty much an annual Pittsburgh thing for us. A 15-minute “Plane Crash” would be awesome.
The week after that: The Traveling McCourys and Bill Nershi of String Cheese Incident, at the Rex Theater. A badly needed bluegrass fix for me.
The week after that: The Decemberists, at the Benedum Center. I wouldn’t be terribly disappointed if they don’t play “Row Jimmy” for Mrs. Crappy’s birthday show — but I’d be awfully happy if they did.
A few weeks after that: Skinny Moo, at the Greenville Inn in Chagrin Falls, Ohio. One word: Legendary.
Forgive me if I behave like a normal, rational human being for a moment, while discussing college football. I promise you — it’ll last just a minute or two.
That’s all the time I’ll need to explain why I’m excited that Michigan landed Jim Harbaugh.
(I know, I know. Stick with me for a second, OK?)
* The best thing about The Coaching Change Up North is that Harbaugh should bring that program back to its traditional place in college football — and that is nothing but positive for the Big Ten. The shine has come off our conference recently, and it’s for one simple fact: we don’t compete. This isn’t all the fault of the team up north — look no further than a horrible loss at home to Virginia Tech as an example, ahem — but having one of the conference’s marquee teams struggle to earn bowl eligibility goes a long way towards hurting the perception of the B1G. Ohio State must be consistently good for the Big Ten to be respected, and the conference’s other big name programs — Penn State, Nebraska, Wisconsin and, especially, Michigan — must match that consistency as well.
* If you believe what Harbaugh said in his news conference today, it’s good to hear that Michigan is getting a guy who believes in — who understands — what’s different about college football. We’re not watching the same level of football as we do on Sundays. But we care more, and that passion is what makes Saturday football better. NFL reporters and execs won’t understand why Harbaugh left. I do.
* Finally — here’s a Michigan coach I can really hate again.
Mrs. Crappy has a rule pertaining to the Polar Bear Plunge coming up on New Year’s Day. She doesn’t mind that I’m dumb enough to jump in the freezing cold Monongahela River, but she maintains — correctly, I will grudgingly admit — that I’m not allowed in the water unless there are enough friends along to pull me out.
At the moment, I know Jenda is going to show up at the Mon Wharf on Thursday morning. And with all due respect to Jenda, that’s not enough.
Have you always watched the spots about the plunge on the news New Year’s Day and kind of wondered what it would be like? It’s kind of like this:
And let me tell you, boys and girls — the bragging rights are unparalleled. And this could be the year you finally do it.
Specifics? I have specifics. We swim sometime between 9:15 and 9:30 a.m., but you’ll need to be down on the Mon Wharf by 8:30, or you may not make it down there at all. When you get down to the wharf, head towards the Point and look for the red Honda Element flying at least one Ohio State flag; the river bottom and shore is easier to navigate, which means you’re out of the water faster.
Oh, and we usually go get breakfast and beer after.
I have plenty more advice, none of which Jenda needs. But if some newcomers — like, say, you — let me know in the comments that you’re plunging, I’ll be sure to share.