Man, my brain was fried late Monday afternoon.
Of course, having just watched the Royals continue their recent skid with an underwhelming performance against the St. Louis Cardinals in the first game of the annual I-70 series had most of us KC fans in a foul frame of mind, but for me, it was actually just the final straw in what was a taxing weekend.
It all started last Friday, when I found out that a area resident critical of the Platte County R-3 School District whom I had given a little ink to in recent issues was now criticizing me and this newspaper online.
Of course, that’s generally OK and I welcome any fair criticism. But this criticism basically infers that I’m a liar and quotes Adolf Hitler. Yeah, that Adolf Hitler.
Anyway, without going into any further details, Friday was just one of those days when the last place you want to be is in the office. So, I was glad to hit the front door that afternoon and I was looking forward to kickstarting the holiday weekend by catching the Royals-Angels game at Kauffman that night with an old buddy of mine.
I enjoyed hanging out with my friend, but it wasn’t because of the Royals’ efforts (see second paragraph.)
Funny how diehard sportsfans’ moods are dictated by how their favorite team is playing. I know some Royals fans who have been kicking their dogs for darn near 30 years.
Then on Saturday, we moved my college-age daughter home for the summer.
Now, don’t get me wrong — I love my daughter and am happy she is back under my roof (though I’m guessing that this mutual happiness will last about a month, if you know what I mean), but if there is one thing that I really don’t like to do, it’s move. I shudder at the thought of moving from my current home of the past 14 years.
But we made it through that and the weekend actually started looking better that evening as Patty and I celebrated our 28th wedding anniversary by having dinner with our two kids.
That was a great night and made me realize how lucky I am. I’ve said it before in this space, but here it is again: if you run into my wife, give her a hug for putting up with me for nearly three decades.
Sunday dawned hot and muggy, perfect for a day working in the yard. And — after a few hours of office time (in my 20-plus years in the newspaper business I have found Sundays to be a very productive work day) — I hit it pretty hard around the Stubbs Platte City villa. Mowing, trimming, I even threw down several pounds of grass seed in a troublesome shady spot and covered it with peat moss.
Then I woke up Monday morning to a torrential downpour, which not only forced the City of Platte City’s annual Memorial Day service from its normally striking outdoors setting at the City Cemetery and indoors, but also washed away a good portion of my freshly-dispatched seed/peat moss.
The good news is the Memorial Day service was still a moving, well-done tribute (see front page).
The bad news — aside from the now-displaced grass seed — was that the stormy weather had wrecked my previous plans of a little tailgating in the Kauffman Stadium parking lot. I didn’t see much sense in going to all the trouble of setting up my tent for 30 measly minutes. Of course, on the way to the park, in the rain, we got word that the game time was pushed back an hour.
Long story short, despite what turned out to be an enjoyable afternoon at the ballpark with my son, my buddy Dan and his son, the Royals ....... well, they were the Royals. Did I mention it’s so much better when your team wins? Eventually we made it home and after dinner, I was kicked back when I stumbled across one of the greatest movies ever made: “Saving Private Ryan.”
I’ve seen it several times and, of course, it’s a perfect fit for Memorial Day. So, during the next three hours, my fried brain was soothed by director Steven Spielberg’s classic tale about war, honor and duty. And I realized the travails of the GIs in the movie and those of all our military men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice made my gripes of the past several days seem fairly meaningless.
And by the time my head hit the pillow, I had forgotten all about the Hitler-quoting critic. All I needed was a little Tom Hanks to make me do what I should have done with the guy in the first place — ignore him.
Then I thought about the anniversary card our kids gave us and drifted off to sleep.
Thanks for reading.
Lee Stubbs is owner/editor of The Citizen. He may be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 858-5154. Follow him on Twitter @leejstubbs.