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UNCLE JACK'S WEBLOG
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
Happy Thanksgiving
       Uncle Jack and Mrs. U.J. hereby extend warmest holiday greetings to all their friends and also assure them that they are alive and well in Baltimore and also in South Nags Head when the renters permit. With a nasty snow and ice storm predicted for the next couple of days they are happy to forego their usual "Thanksgiving in Sonag" this year and instead celebrate the holiday with Mrs. U.J.'s numerous children and grandchildren here in Charm City. Always a happy occasion.
       Until it got too cold they spent many a delightful hour this fall strolling through their neighborhood and admiring the copious foliage as it turned color in fine fashion. The photos below can only hint at the splendor of this year's display.
       It will be a struggle to stay awake but Uncle Jack plans to watch the Ravens-Steelers game Thanksgiving night. He lived in Pittsburgh during the glory years when Mean Joe Greene, Terry Bradshaw and company tore up the NFL so he still has some lingering affinity for the Stillers. Whoever wins Thursday night he will be happy.
       In honor of that game he has reached deep into the archives to recover a piece he wrote about football many years ago. Enjoy.



                                   Football Blues                                                                                                                             

Dear Uncle Jack,

I have been happily married for almost six months to a really swell guy but now that it's football season I'm beginning to wonder if I made a mistake. All my husband does on Saturday and Sunday anymore is sit on the couch and drink beer and watch football on TV with his rowdy friends.
We used to do a lot of fun things on weekends like we would go over to Bodie Island and sit in one of the Park Service duck blinds and make believe we were in a jacuzzi in the Bahamas or we would go over to the mall and watch the seagulls drop their clams in the parking lot.
Now he won't even go out of the house on weekends and when I say something about it he tells me to bug off. To tell you the truth, Uncle Jack, I'm almost desperate enough to pack my things and go home to Mom and I would do it, too, except that she watches football all the time herself and all she ever talks about is how she would like to sack some guy named Ressleberger, whoever he is.
What can I do, Uncle Jack? You are my only hope.

Football Widow
Nags Head

Dear Widow,
Uncle Jack is very glad you wrote to him because he knows what you are going through and he is pretty sure he can help you. But you have to put on your thinking cap and really try to understand what he is going to tell you which you probably won't like. First of all you have to realize that it is not your husband's fault that all he wants to do on weekends is watch football on TV. Ever since he was a tiny boy baby the various forces of society have been training him and shaping and preparing him for the day when he would be a man and it would be time for him to take his rightful place in front of the tube.
Now that he is a man he has no choice. When he hears the voices of Terry or Big John or Dandy Don he must watch football, just like when you hear the voice that tells you it is time to clean the oven you cannot rest until the oven is clean. You must understand that men are supposed to watch football on TV and you should be glad that your husband is a real man and not some kind of wimp who spends his weekends riding around on a golf cart.
If you can truly believe what Uncle Jack has told you so far you are well on the way toward getting through the football season and saving your marriage. All you have to do is find some constructive ways to spend your time and not bother your husband for the next few weekends. If you can clean the oven quietly that would be a good thing to do, but stay away from the refrigerator because you could be trampled. There is something about watching football on TV that makes men very thirsty, especially for Lite Beer from Miller.
Some people will tell you to be a good sport and try to learn about football so you can sit in the living room and enjoy it with your husband and his friends. You must believe Uncle Jack when he tells you this is very bad advice. Your husband does not want you to watch football on TV with him because there are many things he would have to explain to you and it would take all the fun out of watching.
For example, he would have to explain to you why the best play in football is the one where three or four enormous men jump on the little quarterback and try to separate his head from his body. When this play is successful, as it often is, the quarterback has to be carried off the field on a stretcher and taken directly to the emergency room. Also Uncle Jack is pretty sure your husband would not want you to see him drooling over the practically naked cheerleaders when they are bouncing around the sidelines the way they do.
The best thing for you to do is to get out of the house completely on weekends. Fall is the very best time to transplant sandspurs, for example, or you might want to get together with some of the other football widows and drive up by Moyock and watch the leaves fall off the trees.
Anyway Uncle Jack hopes he has helped you see some ways to get through football season and save your marriage, too. All it will take is a little understanding on your part.

Sagely,
Uncle Jack


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The reds are redder than ever this year for some reason.

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Ditto.

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Picture 3 The Guilford neighborhood is 100 years old this year. Many of its trees are that old or older, probably including this one.

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The park across the street from Uncle Jack's condo. Beloved by all the dogs (and dog owners) in the neighborhood.

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Guilford was planned and landscaped a hundred years ago by the same people who designed Central Park in NYC---Frederick Law Olmsted and Sons. They knew what they were doing.

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Lots of leaves to rake when it's all over.

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Uncle Jack's Kindle book might make a great gift for somebody who loves the Outer Banks and enjoys laughing. For more information Google "Uncle Jack's Outer Banks Kindle Edition".

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It's not too soon to think about next year's rental cottage. Uncle Jack's Beach Cottage in South Nags Head might be perfect for you. Google it for further information.

posted by Uncle Jack at 11:53 AM

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Except for short hiatus in Baltimore Uncle Jack has lived in Nags Head for over 45 years. He was a columnist for the Outer Banks Current and its successor, the Outer Banks Sentinel, for 20 years. A collection of his columns is available from Amazon Kindle under the title Uncle Jack's Outer Banks. He and Mrs. Uncle Jack, aka Sue, live in South Nags Head whence he observes and sometimes comments on the passing parade.
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