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Trust your guts
3 October 2008

This is Officer Lee Groinman.

Still, Washington’s Most Disgusted Cop and counting....

I remember this instructor we had back during my days at the Academy. He had always stressed this.

“Trust your guts! If it doesn’t feel right, it probably ain’t right! Just might save your life!”

Trusting our gut instincts became a big part of our curriculum, it even became part of our graduation ceremony, but we’re not gonna talk about any graduation ceremonies anytime soon...

I seem to be in this reflective mood right about now, so at this time I just happens to be reflectin’ on the day Tyrone got hired.

“Holey Crapes! Lord Dawg Almighty!” Was my initial reaction as I recall. I fired off a flamin’ email to Todd Turner.

“A coach with pizzazz? Are you terminal? Are you off your MEDS? You better call 911, you clearly have no pulse and your brainwaves are MISSING!” “YOU HEAR ME!!”

A coach with ‘pizzazz’. It’s still a wonderment to me that Turner felt that Tyrone had ‘pizzazz’. As you can probably tell I got no response from Turner, even though my email was full of said ‘pizzazz’. I suppose I was just leanin’ on that life-lesson from my instructor from Academy. “Trust your guts!”

My guts are about shot.

The day before the Stanford game I was manning the chow line in ‘C’ Unit at the jail. This new inmate approaches and he shows me his wristband so I can cross his name off the meal count roster. He seems stable enough...His name is Cardinal?

“Cardinal? What kinda’ name is CARDINAL?”

My guts are telling me that this is a set up by my buddies; jailhouse humor at it’s finest. Nobody has a name like Cardinal the day before the Stanford game. I look up at the ceiling monitor, why we’re on Candid Camera! I decide to play along.

“Step outta’ line CARDINAL! “Officer, I don’t mean no trouble.”

“I’ve never seen any Cardinals ‘round these PARTS!”

“Are you the kinda’ Cardinal that’s a color, or are you the kinda’ Cardinal that’s a bird?

“Sir it’s just my name, I don’t mean no harm.”

“Where you from Cardinal?” “Shelton Sir.”

“SHELTON! Why there’s only two kinda’ Cardinals that comes from SHELTON! So which one is you?”

“Come tomorrow night son, your Cardinal’s is going DOWN!!”

“Sir, you better call medical, I think I’m having an attack.”

Oh for crapes sake, this boy has no sense of humor at all. Now I’ve got to call for back up while I escort Mr. Cardinal out to the holding cell to await medical. Now I’ve got some splainin’ to do. Now there’ll be reports to write, damn. Even if it’s a “near miss” you got it, there’s a “near miss” report. DAMN! There’ll be a phone call from the Sarge. DAMN!! I notify the control desk as to the situation and I radio Nurse Ty. Yes folks, that is his real name, and lucky for me, Nurse Ty was once a Fullback for the U-Dub, back in the mid 90’s.

I think my guts steered me wrong on this one...

So after about 45 minutes Nurse Ty enters my duty station. Ty hasn’t been to Husky Stadium since his graduation ceremony, but we’re not gonna talk about any graduation ceremonies anytime soon. Ty hasn’t even heard of Dawgman. Ty gets most of his Husky information from me.

“So Lee, what can you tell me about Mr. Cardinal, it seems he suffered an anxiety attack, his first one in over 8 years?”

“Well Ty. It seems Mr. Cardinal may be a big college football fan, and with a name like Cardinal and with the Stanford game tomorrow, combined with the stress of being incarcerated, well it just may have put the guy over the edge.”

“Is Cardinal actually a Stanford fan Lee?”

“Oh no, I don’t think so, in fact I think he’s actually a Tybot, Ty. In my professional opinion, this ‘Tybot’ issue may have in fact, lead to, and could have indeed fueled his anxiety attack.”

Ty starts to laugh, “A Tybot Lee? What’s a Tybot? You giving medical opinions now Groinman?”

“No Ty, no opinions, just the facts, you see, a Tybot is someone who supports Tyrone Willingham, some call ‘em “Typolgist’s” or something like that. Are you a Tybot Ty?”

“I’m just a Ty, Lee. Do you think we should put this ‘Tybot’ issue in our reports?”

At this time, I just want to give a big ‘Thanks’ to Nurse Ty. A Nurse at the jail works horrendous hours, sometimes staying even longer when needed. Ty always has a long day, because of his insane commute from Ellensburg. We had an unrelated near inmate on inmate fatality this week due to a stabbing with a length of steel rebar. Ty stayed past his shift, helped the medical transport, and never bitched. After all this was said and done, Ty went home to Ellensburg after a near 20-hour day, only to return a few hours later.

Well it seems our boy Cardinal got fixed up just fine thanks to Nurse Ty. Ty gave him some chill-out pills and a paper sack to breathe in. Now Cardinal’s walkin’ around C Unit with a bag over his head.

Gonna need another talk with that boy...

Well as luck would have it, come hell or high water, I couldn’t get the time off to attend the Stanford game. I once had a streak of 25 years without missing a home game. I thought about calling in sick, but Sarge knows where I’d be, and after the Cardinal issue.... But hey a good friend wanted the tickets for him and his date, said he would pay face value. Will he come thru with the cash? Trust your guts...

It’s a drop dead gorgeous day. I’d taken the two-wheeled torque-monster to the jail. Coming home I remembered that I had a two-dollar off coupon for A Papa Murphy’s Pizza. Might as well get the huge Family size, the Red Apple store next door had 18 packs of cold ones on sale, at that price, why not buy two? No worries, the torque monster can handle it...

It can hardly get any better that this. It’s kick-off time for Stanford. It’s just me and my Alaskan Malamutes, Elsie and Eli, they’re cuddled up on the “Dawg” couch in my basement bunker. I’ve got all I need, TV set, computer, a cooler full of cool ones, a giant pizza, a toilet just a few steps away, I just may stay here for days...

“Fouch is the better passer dad, Locker should run the option! I’m gonna kick Spirit’s butt if he’s not back for the beavs! We just may need a shake up at mascot! When’s the last time we had a year when even the mascot got hurt?”

“Time for mascot change!”

Well that’s Eli, on the left (just a pup then), why he’s just an excitable boy, plus a big Warren Zevon fan. Elsie above (when she was a pup), well, she’s already miffed...

So it’s a decent start for the Dawgs! We’ve seen it before, then the realization sets in that another loss is just moments away. A failed onsides kick seals the deal. Looking for any bit of good news, I call out to my wife.

“Hey Gloria”. “Did Archie come over and pick up those Stanford tickets?”

“Ah, well no Lee, he said that his band got a gig at the last minute, all the way over in Ellensburg! He said you probably know the guy, he used to run the ball for the Huskies!”

“Nurse Ty is throwin’ a party? With a band?”

“No Lee, not anybody named Ty, it was someone with a name like Junior, like a JR Hasty, they’re celebrating some big win at Central. Archie hoped you could sell those Stanford tickets to our bubba next door...”

Burned again...

Trust your guts.

I have days when I just wish that made this stuff up....

So now it’s on down to Arizona for game five of the Tyrone Death March.

I remember traveling down to Tucson for some of those games, making a run to Nogales and the Mexican border in the pre-game morning, beer in ice buckets, Hooker taking it to the house on his first touch, victories, hordes of fans in purple, team hotels, oh yes those memories, sweet memories...

Now, I’ll be sitting in the unfinished bunker-basement with the dogs...

But hey, can we make some heroic run with Fouch at QB? Can Locker come out and be another weapon somewhere else? I have wanted to see Fouch at QB with Locker in the slot or receiver or tailback, or something, yeah probably too “outside the box’ for this staff. But you never know, especially at 0-4.

Can the defense stop somebody? Can they stop anybody?

At this point I’d still say yes, but the only bigger homer than me is Baird...

Can we get ‘er done? Can we get anything done?

Trust your guts.

Mine are shot....

P.S. Reachin’ down into the email bag, I see a note from Scott and Stephanie Searing. They write “Groinman, if we win I’ll be dancin’ on the W! Watch for me!”

Oh yes I’ll be watchin’ for ya’ and I’ll be dancin’ right there with ya’ when those “Dancing Days Are Here Again.” But now it seems those days are “Over The Hills And Far Away.”

Speakin’ of Zeppelin songs, I can’t see the Husky fan base standing for anymore of “The Song Remains The Same.”

My minds eye just caught a glimpse of Tyrone singin’ “Nobody’s Fault But Mine.”

I may need some help here folks....

Keep the faith Dawgs. We will dance again, the wins will come.

Now how about we get the LED out, Some more Zeppelin perhaps? How about “Rock and Roll?”

“Been a long time, been a long time, been a long lonely lonely lonely long time...”

Overdue in fact, Mr. Plant, sing it to Scottie and Mark...


Lee Groinman can be reached at malamute@4malamute.com

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