In writing to old friends, sometime one’s imagination is more interesting than what happens during the day. Then one is absolutely forced to resort to fiction. Since they know me well, they can tell this is not real. You, gentle reader, do not know me well; so I tell you that this is a piece of fiction in 714 words.
Dear Ted and Jody:
Way back last Fall, I bought a package of Lumbquist sausage to have with my eggs and French fried potatoes for breakfast. That was during football season; and Lumbquist had a sweepstakes. They allow people to enter once a day for a trip to the Division One National Championship game. Minor weekly prizes were tickets to various college games. Not being a football fan of note, I decided to enter anyway as the ultimate prize was $1,000,000. After I entered I read the fine print: “Once at the game, the winner will have the skill-based opportunity to go on-field to try and throw a football through a hole at a pre-determined distance to win $1,000,000.” But I had already entered. I did not follow-up with all the daily entries. However, I entered that one time.
There was a knocking on the front door. That is a rare event here in the sticks being so far off the road. I answered the knocks. When I opened the door there were more vehicles on my front gravel than I could have imagined would fit. There were four television vans with crews, several limos and a large panel truck with “PARTY TIME” emblazoned on the side. At least twenty people crowded my front deck most with balloons on long ribbons, some throwing confetti and two with Champagne bottles and glasses. One fellow was shoving a microphone in my face while demanding to know what I thought.
Well, given that it was snowing heavily (a very rare event here) I thought the young ladies who were scantily clad might do well to put some winter clothing on. However, I kept my observation to myself and inquired of the pushy fellow with the microphone “What is all this about?” He declared that I had won and still wanted to know what I thought. I looked about and saw the PARTY TIME truck had small print that labeled is owner as “Lumbquist since 1884.” I knew the truck wasn’t that old, and it finally dawned on me this was about the $1,000,000 NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME contest for which I had submitted on online entry back in October when I decided to try Lumbquist smoked sausage for breakfast (and I continue to this day to use it; as it is pretty good).
After that everything was a blur of television appearances, interviews and meeting with lawyers accountants (they always seem to get involved when there is money lying about) and press agents until it was halftime at the National Championship Game in Tampa (you know, for the life of me I can not recall which schools were playing). The President of Lumbquist Corporation handed me a football at the 50 yard line and pointed to what appeared to be a golf ball sized hoop some 50 yards away and into the back of the end zone.
Well, I did not have a ghost of a chance of getting the ball 50 plus yards, much less through that small hole. So, I did what I thought Bobby Riggs would have done. I tossed the ball causally up in the air a few times, looked confident and cocky, turned my back to the target and took a few more steps to make it farther away and flipped the ball over my head (I did use every bit of strength I could muster in that toss).
When I flipped the ball over my head there was a collective gasp from the 53,245 people in the stadium. Then it was so quiet, had I had normal hearing I probably could have heard the football parting the air as it flew, took one bounce and then the crowd erupted. Again, silence and then laughter. I turned around to see what had happened and the first thing I saw was the President of Lumbquist turning beet red. Then I saw, the football some 50 plus yards away stuck in the hoop. Indeed, the hoop was too small for a regulation sized football to make it all the way through.
I would love to know what happened next. I would have loved to see the replay; but as always, I awoke from that dream before it was quite over. I shrugged my shoulders, disconnected the oxygen I use when I sleep, put on my sling to keep my useless right arm and hand from dragging on the floor when I move about in my low rider wheel chair.
Warmest regards, Ed