Today I met my good friend Rita at Jimmy V’s in Westerville where members of the Columbus Browns Backers meet to watch the game. I have been a Browns fan since I was a tyke as has Rita and this year I decided to take the plunge and become an official Browns Backer member ($10 entry fee – but not really sure what it gets me).
I have to admit I really look forward to Sunday afternoons watching my favorite team with other fans of the Browns. Being a Browns fan is similar to being a Red Sox fan before they won the World Series a few years ago, or being a Chicago Cubs fan. Each year you start out thinking that maybe the sports gods will look kindly on your team and that they might perform well enough to win it all.
Being tied for first place in the AFC Central with Pittsburgh and Baltimore the Browns Backers were out in full force anticipating that Cleveland might run their record to 3-1, but unfortunately the Browns didn’t show up today and got smoked by Tennessee. The loss was the typical assortment of mistakes, dropped passes, penalties, missed tackles and play calls that just didn’t pan out.
Oh well, we will still be tied for first if Baltimore loses tonight and we have two weeks to get ready for the Raiders. One thing is for sure, the Browns Backers will be back at Jimmy V’s in two weeks, hoping always hoping that this year might be our year.
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The more I travel, the more I have come to value airports and hotels by the availability of free wireless access to the internet. For airports, the availability of plentiful plug-ins also factors into the mix.
By these two crucial measures, Port Columbus fares pretty well. The seating areas have lots of plug-ins that allow you to recharge your collection of electric devices after a long day on the road. The wireless is free and seems to be available throughout the airport — or, at least, at the gates I’ve used. The free wireless is advertised through a corny campaign that invites airport patrons to visit “Wai-Fai Beach” and features a little grass-skirted hula dancer figure, but I don’t care. I’ve used the kitschy surfboard as a plug-in point when the seating areas are filled, and I appreciate the service.
It’s gotten to the point that I become irked if I can’t find lots of outlets and free wireless at airports or in my hotel room. It’s bad enough when there is no wireless, but it is even worse when you have to register and pay for it. I really feel like I’m being nickeled and dimed to death. I’ve started to ask my secretary to check to see if the hotel has free wireless. If it doesn’t, and I can free wireless at a competitively priced alternative, that is where I am going to take my business.
I’m not saying I’m entitled to free wireless, but if Port Columbus and many hotels can provide it, why can’t everybody?
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Yesterday Kish and I traveled east to spend the day with cousin Jeff at his sumptuous lake house on Lake Mohawk. It’s a wonderful, whimsical place.
This morning we sat on Jeff’s deck overlooking the lake, sipping cups of hot coffee in the cool air, listening to the wind chimes ring gently in the breeze, and watching the first rays of the morning sun streak the sky. I’ll have some more to say about our visit and Jeff’s place — but for now we just want to say thanks, Jeff, for a wonderful time!
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Today the Browns take on the Tennessee Titans in Cleveland Browns Stadium. The Browns will be trying to do something that has been a rarity since their return to the NFL — put together a winning streak that lasts for more than two games.
Although the season is young, this game is an important one because the Browns schedule is “back-loaded.” The Browns don’t play the Steelers or the Ravens until December — and then they play those two teams four times in the last five games. If the Browns hope to be in the playoff hunt as the season winds down, they have to win the winnable games early in the season and then hope to take a few games from these two powerhouse divisional rivals.
Today’s game against Tennessee is one of those early-season games that the Browns really need to win. The Titans, like the Browns, are 2-1, and are led by quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, who is off to a fast start. They are primarily a passing team on offense, without much of a running attack. The Browns defense has been able to put pressure on the quarterback in each of their first three games, and they will be trying to sack and harass the 36-year-old Hasselbeck. Offensively, the Browns will be looking to get off to a fast start for the first time this season. The Browns’ first half performance in their games so far has been brutal, and they need to start to develop a consistent offensive rhythm that works throughout the game. Having Peyton Hillis back, with the increased confidence that should come from last week’s last-second winning touchdown drive and breakout performance by Montario Hardesty, should help.
At the end of every NFL season, teams that don’t make the playoffs look back at the results and can always identify games they should have won — but didn’t. The Browns already have one such game — the season opener against Cincinnati — and they can’t afford another.
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