But, it's that time of year. Football season gets me a little weepy. I'm not even joking. One time, I teared-up when I heard the opening notes of "Country Roads" in late August, and I wasn't even at a football field.
At the beginning of the season, when the smell of fall is in the air, I am all sorts of excited for all football, not just my beloved Mountaineers. Even, my hometown team, the George Washington High School Patriots. Am I Gee-Dub alumni? No. Do I know a single person who goes to school there? No. But the school is less than a mile from my house, so by-God, they are MY hometown team. Friday, I found myself caught up in an article on the sports page about the showdown on "The Hill" (read: "Snob Knob"). Yes, yes. G.W. was hosting a football game at their true home field instead of playing their usual "home" game at Laidley Field. This was a big deal for 2 reasons. First, because they play about two games a year at their true home field on their campus. Maybe not even that many. Second, because it was a rematch of last years' championship game for the AAA State Title with South Charleston. Trust me, it was a huge deal.
Anyway, I did a drive by of the field about 5:15 p.m. and cars were already lined up along the road down the road from the field. Did I actually go to the game? Well, no. Maybe next year I will pay $6 or whatever a high school game costs these days and go in. That's actually a pretty good value for seeing two quality teams these days. South Charleston won, for the record. The sportscaster said it was a close game. That's about as close to the action as I got, but there's something to be said for the hometown football scene. And, like I said. Sometimes I get weepy over football at the start of the season.
So, anyway, I woke up early Saturday morning. Early enough to be in the kitchen making coffee when I heard the chirp chirp of a police siren. Again, this would be normal on the West Side, but on the "Hill" (read: "Snob Knob"), people run to their windows to see what the commotion is all about. I forgot all about the Charleston Distance Run being this weekend, with no Regatta this year, and all. Well, the chirp chirp was the lead car of the CDR, and it was actually two City policemen on motorcyles and a Sheriff's Deputy in a Durango leading the pack of die-hard runners. They are "die-hards", cause anyone would have to be to run up Bridge Road. Running down Bridge Road would be different. I've even considered that, as long as there's a car at the bottom to drive my fat ass back up the hill. The CDR is also a big deal in this town. Participation was down a bit this year, I believe, since there was no Regatta, but still the running participation was over 3,000. Add to that the people who did the 5K walk, 10K walk and the running relay, and that's a pretty good crowd of people. Participation in the past has been over 10,000. It's nice to see that despite losing it's marquee event, Charleston still keeps the good stuff that was associated with the Regatta. The funeral parade, one of the highlights of the Regatta, that sorta had a cult following, happened this weekend, too. Maybe next year, we'll get the whole thing back, but for now, the Regatta fell victim to the economy. I watched several of the runners from my couch with a cup of coffee, and after a long while, a lone wheelchair racer came by my house. He was really struggling with the steady but gentle grade that goes past my house toward Louden Heights Road. A truck came by with some guys who looked like they were part of a construction crew. They stopped and spoke to the wheelchair racer, and then one got out and pushed him up to the intersection with Louden Heights Road where the race turned and went back down the hill. I thought that was especially nice, like one of those commercials for that insurance company, who's name escapes me (effective marketing, I suppose).
Anyway, I got off track. Today, we planned a cookout. The unofficial guest of honor was Jeremy's uncle Danny, who every time I see him says, "Every time I'm in Charleston, I always wondere where you guys live." Well, now he knows. The cook out was a success, despite the weather. It was really a cook out and eat in. But everyone had fun and we had too much food--marks of a great cookout. We had about 12 people here. Family. Good times.
Now, because of said cook out plans, I did what I always do when I have some sort of entertaining deadline looming. I went on a home improvement marathon that would make even the most easy-going person (me) insane. The kind of home improvement marathon that causes me to miss work, loose sleep at night and fight with my husband. But alas, it is done. It looks great. And I arrived at some genius solutions to snags in said marathon in said sleepless nights. This time, it was stripping the wallpaper (yes, again.) in the office. This wallpaper was not painted over. But it was fugly, so it had to go. And it took with it, layers of paper on the sheet rock in places. It was awful. Huge patches of bare sheet rock with frayed paper that I had to spackle over and paint. And, it was one night when I was laying in bed watching the clock tick from 4 am to 4:45 am that the answer came to me... Semi-gloss paint would hide the rough spots better than satin or eggshell finish would. I arrived at this conclusion after I'd done three coats of spackle and sanding, and still had places you could loofah your heels on in the wall. So, because of scheduling snafus, I had to take off work on Friday to finish the room. Here it is, before and after:
And, here's a few other updates from the weekend. The Energy Star Sales Tax Holiday started September 1st. So I made a Home Depot run for a programmable thermostat and picked up a new light fixture for the entry way. I got the art at Ikea this weekend when I volunteered to drive my mom up so she could buy a computer desk. Y'all know I jump at an opportunity to go to Ikea.