Monday, December 31, 2007


According to the Washington Redskins, the magic number is 21.

The Redskins and head coach Joe Gibbs (who wore a #21 baseball cap in yesterday's post game press conference) don't think the teams late run of success is a coincidence. The Skins started off 5-3, and then lost four straight games and Pro-Bowl safety Sean Taylor who was shot and killed in his Miami home.

Since then, the Skins have won four straight, and yesterday they knocked off their hated rival, the Cowboys, to make an improbable appearance in the playoffs. At least, it seemed improbable when they were 5-7 and mourning the death of a friend and teammate.

Many were quick to point out that they believe this is a team of destiny and that Taylor's presence remains with them in some way. Among other things, they point to yesterday's margin of victory -- 21 points.

It doesn't matter if you believe or if we believe. What is clearly important is that THEY believe. That belief is helping heal some wounded souls, and creating a spectacular late season run for all Redskins fans to enjoy.

Of course, the folks at FedEX were willing to pull out all the stops to try and derail the Boys...

Clinton Portis and Santana Moss, Taylor's two best friends on the team, have been especially productive.

Next up: Seattle - Saturday, 4:30pm, NBC.


The Dallas Cowboys entered yesterday's game with the Redskins as the second-most prolific offense in the NFL with an above-average ground game. 'Dem Boys departed with a 27-6 loss and a total of one rushing yard in 16 attempts, for an average of .0625 yards per carry. At that rate, the Cowboys would have required 160 carries to gain a single first down.

The Redskins hadn't held an opponent to one yeard since they did it to the Tampa Bay Bucaneers in 1989.

Zero, anybody?

Julius Jones #21 of the Dallas Cowboys is tackled by Cornelius Griffin #96. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images) Getty Images


#1 NORTH CAROLINA 90, Valparaiso (Crusaders, 3,874 students, Valparaiso, IN) 58

By Robbi Pickeral - Raleigh News-Observer
CHAPEL HILL - Two reserve point guards were on the bench in street clothes. Thus, top-ranked North Carolina experimented with some different lineups.

But one key thing remained the same during UNC's 90-58 men's basketball victory over Valparaiso on Sunday: Danny Green's contribution off the bench.

After the Crusaders (10-3) whittled a once 17-point deficit to tie at 37-37 with 17:28 left at the Smith Center, Green swished three 3-pointers, scored a tip-in and blocked three shots during a 27-2 run that secured the Tar Heels' 13th straight victory.

Green's 20 points tied his career high and marked his 10th double-digit scoring effort of the season. The junior also added four rebounds, five assists, four blocks and three steals in 20 minutes.

North Carolina's Danny Green, splits the defense of Valparaiso's Urule Igbavboa (00) and Samuel Haanpaa (13) during the second half. (AP Photo/Karl DeBlaker)


Jason Rich (#25) hit a short jumper with 4.3 seconds left to lift Florida State to a 66-64 win over Georgia Tech on Sunday night in an Atlantic Coast Conference opener for both teams.

The Yellow Jackets had a chance to tie but Zack Peacock's off-balance jumper at the buzzer never had a chance, falling short.

WAKE FOREST 78, Air Force (Falcons, 4,000 students, Colorado Springs, CO) 67

VIRGINIA 78, Hartford (Hawks, 4,545 students, West Hartford, CT) 70


The ACC is currently 2-1 in Bowl play, with three more games on the docket today.

#15 Auburn vs. #23 CLEMSON - Chick-Fil-A Bowl, 7:30pm, ESPN

FLORIDA STATE vs. Kentucky – Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl, 4 pm, ESPN

GEORGIA TECH vs. Fresno State -- Roady’s Humanitarian Bowl, 2 pm, ESPN2


IN COLLINS WE TRUST...Todd Collins #15 of the Washington Redskins looks to hand the ball off against the Dallas Cowboys on his way to a touchdown on December 30, 2007 at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland. Collins has led the Skins to four straight wins. Yesterday he was 22 of 31 for 244 yards. His QB rating is 104.8.

(Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)


YOU'RE NEVER TOO YOUNG TO HATE AUBURN...Alabama fan Brett Robertson, 6, of Decatur, Ala., looks through the fencing as the Alabama players warmup before their Independence Bowl college football game against Colorado in Shreveport, La., Sunday, Dec. 30, 2007.

Bama won, so Nick Saban (Lou's cousin) lives to fight another day...

(AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)


NOW, THAT'S A NEW YEAR'S EVE PARTY...Cyclists ride bikes on the ski slopes in the alpine resort of Villars, Switzerland, during the New Year's eve mountain bike snow race, Monday, Dec. 31, 2007. Nearly 100 cyclists rode the 5 km track on snow.

(AP Photo/Keystone/Laurent Gillieron)


SOMEWHERE, SOMEBODY is playing in a soccer match, every minute of every day...Joe Hart goalkeeper of Manchester City saves from Dirk Kuyt (3rd from right, partly hidden) of Liverpool during the Premier league football match at The City of Manchester Stadium, north-west England, 30 December 2007.

(Photo Andrew Yates/AFP/Getty Images)

Sunday, December 30, 2007


WAKE FOREST 24, Connecticut (Huskies, 20,542 students, Storrs, CN) 10

Behind do-it-all receiver Kenneth Moore and a swarming defense full of big plays, Wake Forest rallied to beat fellow upstart Connecticut 24-10 in the Meineke Car Care Bowl on Saturday.

Often called "Weak Forest" by some or (the preferred by TAH) “Cake Forest” for a long history of ineptitude, Wake Forest (9-4) secured the second-most wins in school history. This year’s tally is behind only last year's improbable 11-3 mark that included an ACC title and an Orange Bowl berth.

"You know 20 wins in two years for little ol' Wake Forest isn't too bad," Grobe said.

The Demon Deacons had to come from behind to do it, reeling off the final 24 points after falling behind 10-0 at halftime against the Huskies, who were playing in only their second bowl game.

Riley Skinner completed 29 of 38 passes for 268 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions, and ACC rookie of the year Josh Adams rushed for 81 yards and a score.

(ABOVE) Wake Forest quarterback Riley Skinner (11) scrambles away from Connecticut's Dan Davis (6) and Cody Brown, back right, during the second half . (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)


VALERO GAS STATIONS ALAMO BOWL -- Penn State 24, Texas A&M 17 – JoePa wins another one…somehow.

AUTO ZONE LIBERTY BOWL -- Mississippi State 10, University of Central Florida 3 – God bless ‘em, but we’re still yawning…

(Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)


Winthrop (Eagles, 5,111 students, Rock Hill, NC) 76, #19 MIAMI 70

SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) -- Leading by 11 points early in the second half, the unbeaten Miami Hurricanes appeared on their way to another win.

Then, faster than you can find Winthrop on a map, the lead was gone. Soon the perfect record was gone, too.

Senior Chris Gaynor scored a career-high 21 points, and Winthrop made 10 of its final 13 shots Saturday to beat the No. 19-ranked Hurricanes, 76-70.

Miami fell to 12-1 in the first game of an Orange Bowl Classic doubleheader.

(AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez)

NC STATE 74, Western Carolina (Catamounts, 9,055 students, Cullowhee, NC) 62

VIRGNIA TECH 54, St. John's (Red Storm, 15,092 students, Queens, NY) 48

#20 CLEMSON 78, Samford (Bulldogs, 2,982 students, Homewood, AL) 45

Clemson's Trevor Booker, left, block a shot by Samford's Jim Griffin during the first half. (AP Photo/Patrick Collard)


Evidently Bobby Bowden isn’t too terribly worried about his legacy being impacted by the Noles latest scandal.

Florida State coach Bobby Bowden isn't concerned about his legacy being stained by the school's current academic cheating scandal.

Bowden, whose 373 career coaching wins are two more than Penn State's Joe Paterno, takes the Seminoles into Monday's Music City Bowl game against Kentucky short three dozen players, most of which were involved in the scandal or other team violations. Some of the missing players are hurt.

"I don't think you can ruin my legacy. How can you ruin it? What I've done, I've done. You can't take it away, can you?" -- Bobby Bowden

In an interview with ESPN's Jack Arute, Bowden confirmed that at least 22 of the 36 football players who will miss the Music City Bowl will do so because of their involvement in a cheating scandal the school uncovered this summer.

(Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)


JUST IN CASE YOU'VE BEEN IN A COMA THE PAST FEW MONTHS...New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady chats with Randy Moss (81) during the fourth quarter of their game against the New York Giants at Giants Stadium last night.

The Patriots defeated the Giants 38-35 to become the first team to go 16-0 in the regular season and the first since the 1972 Miami Dolphins to go through a full schedule without a loss. Brady broke the single-season record with his 50th touchdown pass and Randy Moss broke the single-season record with his 23rd touchdown catch in the game.

In the fourth quarter, the Giants' fans roared approval when Moss dropped a wide open potential touchdown pass. No problem. Brady went right back to the Moss on the next play for a 65 yard touchdown.

Game over. Drive home safely.


COACHED 500, REMEMBER AT LEAST 423 OF 'EM...Not bad. Fans honor head coach Joe Paterno of the Penn State Nittany Lions for his 500th game as head coach during the Valero Gas Stations Alamo Bowl against the Texas A&M Aggies on December 29, 2007 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. Penn State won 24-17.

(Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)


AS STEVIE RAY USED TO SAY 'BLAME IT ON THE WEATHER'...Obviously, FSU and Penn State fans have a lot in common with programs teetering on the edge of competitiveness, a tendency for players to find off-field trouble, and head coaches that are older than dirt (not that Dirt).

There are, however, some subtle differences in the fan base...or it could just be the weather.

Saturday, December 29, 2007


Virginia Tech running back Branden Ore, the Hokies' leading rusher, has been suspended for the first quarter of the Orange Bowl because he was late to the final practice before the Christmas break, a school spokesman confirmed today. Sophomore Kenny Lewis will start against Kansas.

Athletic department spokesman Bryan Johnston told The Associated Press in a phone interview from Hollywood, Fla. on Friday night, that Ore was about 45 minutes late to practice on Dec. 21, the team's last workout before Christmas break.

Ore leads the team with 876 yards and eight rushing touchdowns. Lewis has played in all 13 games this season, but this will be his first start. He is third on the team behind quarterback Tyrod Taylor with 53 carries for 183 yards and four touchdowns.

Associate head coach Billy Hite supported the school's decision and said:
"I talked with Coach [Frank] Beamer on Friday and I recommended that we suspend Branden for a quarter," Hite was quoted as saying in the Roanoke Times. "I'm not putting up with that kind of stuff. In order for us to win ball games, we can't have guys showing up at practice whenever they want to. Everybody else made it to practice on time, so there's no excuse for Branden not making it, too."

Maybe he was studying and fell asleep in the library? Naaaaahhhh...that's crazy talk!

(Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)


BOSTON COLLEGE 24, Michigan State (Spartans, 36,072 students, East Lansing, MI) 21

Matt Ryan's final game at Boston College made coach Jeff Jagodzinski's first season one of the best in school history.

Ryan threw three touchdown passes, two to Rich Gunnell, and the Eagles extended the nation's longest bowl winning streak to eight with a 24-21 victory over Michigan State in the Champs Sports Bowl on Friday.

Boston College (11-3) won 11 games for the first time since 1940.
(AP Photo/John Raoux)


Oregon State (Beavers, 16,226 students, Corvallis, OR) 21, MARYLAND 14

Oregon State’s Yvenson Bernard rushed for 177 yards and a touchdown in his final college game, and the Beavers stopped Maryland's running game cold to emerge from a rainy baseball stadium with a 21-14 victory Friday night.

Bernard teamed up with freshman James Rodgers (left), who rushed for a career-best 115 yards, caught an early TD pass and recovered Bernard's fumble for the second half's only score. With one defensive stand after another, the Beavers (9-4) extended the Pac-10's longest bowl winning streak to four and snapped Ralph Friedgen's three-game postseason winning streak at Maryland.

Chris Turner passed for 205 yards and hit Isaiah Williams and Darrius Heyward-Bey with first-quarter TD passes, but the Terrapins (6-7) stalled in the second half of their fifth loss in seven games.

The Beavers' vaunted rushing defense -- ranked second in the nation -- was just as good as Maryland feared, holding the Terrapins to 2 yards on the ground in the first three quarters. Maryland ended up with 19 yards rusing…


(Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)


MARYLAND 76, Delaware (Blue Hens, 16,548 students, Newark, DE) 46

Much better…James Gist bounced back from a horrid performance to score 18 points and grab 10 rebounds, and Maryland snapped a three-game losing streak with a 76-46 rout of Delaware on Friday night.

Greivis Vasquez scored 18 points and Bambale Osby added 14 for the Terrapins (7-6), who were coming off losses at home to Boston College, Ohio and American. In the latter game, Gist had 3 points and four rebounds in 22 minutes before fouling out.

Maryland's Shane Walker (2) battles for the ball against Delaware's Jim Ledsome, center, and D.J. Boney, right, during the second half. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

BOSTON COLLEGE 80, Sacred Heart (Pioneers, 3,200 students, Fairfield, CT) 75

Tyrese “Jerry, Not Donna” Rice and Shamari “Dangit, Put The Kids In The Backseat, Britney” Spears scored 16 points each to lead Boston College to an 80-75 win over Sacred Heart on Friday night.

Rice, the team's leading scorer at 19.7 points per game, shot 3-for-6 from the floor but went 8-for-8 from the line, hitting six in the final three minutes after Sacred Heart trimmed a 16-point deficit to five, 70-65, with 3:03 to play.
The Pioneers (4-8) cut it to 78-75 with 10.2 seconds left, but Spears sealed it with two free throws.

Boston College center Tyrelle Blair (44) reaches for a rebound between Sacred Heart guard Gene Pettway, rear, and forward Mehmet Sahan, front, during the second half. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

VIRGINIA TECH 84, Hofstra (The Pride, 13,000 students, Hempstead, NY) 59

Freshman Jeff Allen had 17 points and nine rebounds and the Hokies beat Hofstra 84-59 on Friday night in the opening round of the Aeropostale Holiday Festival.

The Pride were without senior guard Antoine Agudio, the second-leading scorer in the nation with a 26.8 average. Agudio sprained his left ankle in practice on Wednesday.

Virginia Tech's Deron Washington (13) is defended by Hofstra's Mike Davis-Sabb (45) and teammate Arminas Urbutis, background, during first half.

Hey, Deron, what up with the socks?

(AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)


NICE, BODE, NICE! Confirmed U.S. nutball Bode Miller speeds down the course, 29 December 2007, during the Men's FIS Alpine World Cup Downhill event in Bormio. Miller claimed his first World Cup victory of the season ahead of Austrian Andreas Buder and Jan Hudec of Canada.

To celebrate, Bode smoked a joint, drank 14 Red Bull & Grey Gooses, swam across the Nile, ate two endangered crocodiles and then ratted himeslf out on 60 Minutes.

(Photo by Damien Meyer/AFP/Getty Images)


THE WORLD CUP FASHION POLICE APPROVE...Canadian Erik Guay speeds down the course, 29 December 2007 during the Men's FIS Alpine World Cup Downhill event in Bormio in a splendid Spider Man/Red Bull ensemble.

Nice, Erik, NICE!

(Photo by Damien Meyre/AFP/Getty Images)

Friday, December 28, 2007

10,000 - THE BOOK, THE MOVIE!!

In the past day or two, TAH passed the landmark 10,000 hit threshold!

Woo Hoo!

Thanks for your support!

Pass it on to your friends.





Friday, December 28

BOSTON COLLEGE vs. Michigan State, 5:00 PM, Orlando, Fla. (Champs Sports Bowl), TV: ESPN

MARYLAND vs. Oregon State, 8:30 PM, San Francisco, Calif. (Emerald Bowl), TV: ESPN

Boston College's Taji Morris, left, and Roderick Rollins, center top, write on frisbees with Orlando Norato, 10, of Orlando, during the Day for Kids event as part of the activities for the Champs Sports Bowl football game in Orlando, Fla., Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2007.
(AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)


#1 NORTH CAROLINA 106, Nevada (Wolf Pack, 11,962 students, Reno, NV) 70

GOOD NEWS/BAD NEWS: Tyler Hansbrough scored 26 points, Wayne Ellington added a career-high 23 while Ty Lawson contributed a career-high 10 assists to go with his 16 oints as North Carolina beat Nevada 106-70.

However, the Tar Heels lost junior guard Bobby Frasor to a knee injury in the second half. The injury robs the Tar Heels (12-0) of a versatile veteran who can play either guard position and provides defense and leadership off the bench.

Frasor tore his left anterior cruciate ligament when his leg gave way while he was trying to make a steal near the sideline with 9:47 to play. He immediately clutched his knee when he went down before limping to the locker room. He did not return and will require surgery.

NC STATE 79, Seton Hall (Pirates, 5,245 students, South Orange (THE Garden Spot of America!), NJ 73

Gavin Grant paced a balanced scoring attack with 23 points, and Courtney Fells added 17, all in the first half, as North Carolina State knocked off Seton Hall 79-73 Thursday night.

The win was the fourth straight for the Wolfpack (8-3) and avenged a loss they suffered to Seton Hall in Raleigh in January 2006.

North Carolina State's Gavin Grant, left, shoots over Seton Hall's John Garcia during second half, (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

GEORGIA TECH 83, Tennessee Tech (Golden Eagles, 8,060 students, Cookesville, TN) 63


North Carolina's Tyler Hansbrough was named ACC Player of the Week and Clemson's Terrence Oglesby was selected as ACC Rookie of the Week.

In earning player of the week honors for the third time this season and fourth time in his career, Hansbrough averaged 24.0 points, 9.5 rebounds and made 17-of-24 shots from the floor (.708) as the top-ranked Tar Heels ran their record to 11-0 with two home wins. In an 88-78 win over Nicholls State, Hansbrough had 27 points and 11 rebounds for his fifth-straight "double-double". In Saturday's 105-70 victory over Santa Barbara, the Poplar Bluff, Mo., junior made nine-of-11 from the field, finishing with 21 points and eight rebounds.

In earning the rookie of the week honors for the first time this season, Oglesby averaged 17.7 points and 2.7 assists per game in leading the 15th-ranked Tigers to wins over Puerto Rico-Mayaguez and DePaul before falling to unbeaten Mississippi in the championship game of the San Juan Shootout. The Cleveland, Tenn., product shot 50 percent from the field (17-of-34) and 50 percent from three-point range (11-of-22) and made 8-of-9 free throws (.889) for the three games.

(AP Photo/Sara D. Davis and Brennan Linsley)


AND THE "THURMAN THOMAS WHERE IS MY HELMET? AWARD" GOES TO...Part of being a world class skier is looking cool, so your helmet needs to match your outfit. German Kathrin Hoelzl competes during the first round of women's Giant Slalom of the Ski World Cup, 28 December 2007 in Lienz in a helmet she obviously borrowed from a Wahoo when she misplaced hers just moments prior to the beginning of the race.

(Photo SCHAADFOTO/AFP/Getty Images)


NO, I'M NOT SCARED, I ALWAYS HAVE THIS "HOLY CRAP!" LOOK ON MY FACE...US Julia Mancuso competes during the first round of women's Giant Slalom during the Ski World Cup ,28 December 2007 in Lienz.

(Photo SCHAADFOTO/AFP/Getty Images)


A MID-WINTER’S NIGHT GARY WILLIAMS' NIGHTMARE…When Gary Williams has bad dreams, and believe us – they’re all bad dreams lately, - this is what he no doubt sees…Former Terp Chris Wilcox #4 of the Seattle SuperSonics goes to the basket against Kevin Garnett #5 of the Boston Celtics on December 27, 2007 at the Key Arena in Seattle, Washington.

(Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE/Getty Images)


THIS IS WHAT GARY’S DREAMS ARE SUPPOSED TO LOOK LIKESquatch the Seattle SuperSonics mascot dunks through a ring of fire.

Squatch had signed a letter of intent with Duke, but rescinded when he learned there were "no burning" ordinances in Durham.

Shortly thereafter, Gary was hot on the phone for all the obvious reasons.

(Photo by Terrence Vaccaro/NBAE via Getty Images)


HONEY, DO YOU KNOW WHAT YOUR SON DID…during my nationally televised bowl game? Mack Brown’s step son, Chris Jessie, made a mighty blunder last night during the Texas v. Arizona State Holiday Bowl game when he touched a live ball on the field. Texas won easily 52-34, so it didn’t matter…Jessie is a member of the UT “support staff.”

(Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)

Tuesday, December 25, 2007


Soon enough, all the cool skate board dudes will be working to master Super Toly's new signature move, the Wahabaha...

Perfected early Christmas morning, the Wahabaha is difficult to master.

In many primitive languages, Wahabaha means "emergency room."

(Fortunately, we haven't been...yet.)


December 25, 2007

Dear Family & Friends:

At this special time of year, we feel compelled to reflect upon the many blessings bestowed upon our family. In fact, we feel we have been blessed more than most, something you, too, will see as an undisputed fact as you read through this letter.

As the patriarch of our family, Glenn continued his successful reign as Executive Director of the Virginia Thoroughbred Association for another year. In addition, he was reappointed by Governor Tim Kaine (after originally being appointed by Governor Mark Warner, giving credence to his bipartisan appeal) to the Virginia Horse Industry Board. In addition, he was elected as Chairman of this distinguished group of horsemen. His coronation was elegant, yet understated.

He did take a few weeks off in the spring to drive on a NASCAR team. Seems the Pettys wanted a Petty behind the wheel. It made perfect sense. Dad can’t drive as fast as Mom, but those NASCAR Pettys are old school. Just the same, Glenn wracked up a few top ten finishes before heading back to the ole desk job saving the horse industry here in the Commonwealth.

Young A.T. continued her career as a world renowned journalist. Although she was narrowly defeated for a prestigious local award by a ballot-stuffing business reporter for the Warrenton paper, she has been nominated for several major national media awards. We will know the results in early 2008. Please plan on attending the spectacular congratulatory gala. Invitation to follow.

Five-year-old “Toly Hansbrough” enjoyed a spectacular premiere football season with the Fauquier Pee Wee Broncos. Although his playing time was limited, his raw talent (and the likelihood that he will someday stand on stage at the New York Downtown Athletic Club on the first Saturday in December striking that famous pose) was plainly obvious to everyone except his coaches. Next year, thanks to his grandparents, his team will be known as the Holiday Inn Express Broncos, and you can bet our main man Toly will be seeing a lot more playing time.

Imagine our delight, when realized that Toly had super powers. Thankfully, Super Toly uses his power for good and not evil. He was prominently featured in a local magazine, and his Not So Fat Head wall and bumper stickers sold out lickety split. A comic book and movie deal are in the works. That damn Spielberg is hard to get on the phone, but that Scorsese fella calls right back!

A.G. is simply biding her time before starting her modeling and acting careers. She enjoys school, especially art at which she excels winning numerous Elementary School Awards. Last winter, she played basketball and we think a scholarship is inevitable. She’s a dual sporter, and her tennis coach, L. 10SNEONE, believes she has as much natural ability as anyone she has ever coached (including Kerena and Zenus Williams!).

This summer Anna Banana also became a top notch swimmer. Of course she would, being a natural athlete. Even luckier still, A.G.’s first friend C.G.F. Future Hokie has a new pool, so A.G. enjoyed the amenities of a private pool the entire summer and early fall (the pool is, of course, heated.)

Then again, she has shown great talent on an ATV, so maybe we will focus on the Bratz Girl’s Gran Prix of Motocross World Cup Bowl Championship Series 2008…With her talent, it’s a tough call.

This summer we went to Saratoga, where, according to Carly Simon, our horse naturally won! Seriously, our horse won a race at Saratoga which is one of the oldest, most picturesque and prestigious sporting venues in North America.

Sitting in a private box with our horsy friends gave us the perfect vantage point to cheer on OurLifeIsGr8YoursProbablySux (by Perfection, out of Life is Good by Pure Talent). We were fortunate to be staying for the week with another wealthy and powerful family who happily employ a nanny, which basically meant we could ignore the kids while basking in the limelight. That’s A.G. and Super Toly with famous international bloodstock consultant Sir-Lord Knight Patrick Lawley-Wakelin Esq. LLLX and 2003 Kentucky Derby winner Funny Cide.

Prior to our Saratoga trip, we enjoyed a week in a private beach house with some of our dearest friends – the Bon-Pieja Han Valens (say that three times after a week of sunset cocktail parties on the front porch!). As if it weren’t enough that the waterfront house is both comfortable and charming, membership at three private beach clubs really makes for a nice little vacation. Think of them as country clubs, but instead of a golf course there’s a great big blue ocean! There really is nothing quite like a cocktail with an umbrella in it served on the beach by an uber-polite good looking college kid…Well, there’s the Playboy Mansion, but that’s another story.

The days we spent cruising on the boat were splendid. It was rather hot, so it was nice to have a crew to clean up the boat and put it back in the slip when we were finished. The kids caught fish, flew kites, went swimming and boogie boarding. The adults drank a lot and listened to (some bad and some good) 70s and 80s music. We never knew Jim Croce wrote such saucy numbers!

Our children’s featured role in the Fourth of July parade could only be dimmed by the incredible competing fireworks displays from Morehead City and Atlantic Beach later that splendid evening. Jon Bon-Pieja Han Valen (a world-class pyrotechnician) set off a few fireworks himself as he is wont to do. His injuries were minor, yet painful. All and all, it was a damn near perfect trip. After all, the Pettys don’t let a couple of quick trips to the Emergency Room stand in the way of family fun!

To top of(f) the year, we made a pilgrimage to the top of(f) the world. It was super secret, as we were special guests of the Interior Minister of Tibet. Since there is no actual government of Tibet, it was that much more secret and subsequently impossible for you to duplicate.

We were whisked off by private jet to Lhasa, Tibet, and the Potala Palace to meet the Dalai Lama. Nice enough fellow, but none of us are quite sure what all the hub-bub is about. The palace is OK, but it seems a bit pretentious (over 1,000 rooms, 10,000 shrines and about 200,000 statues) for a guy with no material possessions. Based on the robes, we think he might be a USC fan…He did not give us “total enlightenment on our deathbed,” so we don’t have that going for us…Which kind of sucks.

From Lama’s pad, we grabbed a helicopter and headed over to Base Camp at the foot of Mt. Everest. Now that’s a big rock! We hung around base camp and hobnobbed with the greatest alpinists on this Earth…well, at least, the greatest ones that are still alive and not frozen stiff deader than a mackerel up on the Hilary Step.

A very large sherpa, Lobsang Fredegin Sherpa, wanted to take the children to the “roof of the world.” He grabbed Toly, and before we could say “Into Thin Air,” they were off and running up the Khumbu Icefall. Other than Kansas football coach Mark Mangino stalking a breakfast buffet, we’ve never seen such a large man move so gracefully while crossing gaping crevasses on aluminum ladders. Nice footwork, Lobsang.

With hearts in our throats, we finally reached them on Amy’s 2009 i-Satellite PhoneBerry. They were half-way between Camps II and III (over 20,000 feet!), but we managed to convince them to come down. Lobsang Fredegin Sherpa wanted to take Toly to the summit, but we thought that was ridiculous! After all, he’s only five… He summits Everest at five, what the hell are we gonna do when he’s six? We don’t think so…

Next year, at the special invitation of the United Nations’ Middle East Peace Envoy, we hope to visit the pyramids in Egypt (again!). You know they smell like bug spray and dead people (the pyramids, not the Peace Envoy), so the jury’s still out on that one. We’ve included a few other photos of some quick trips we managed to squeeze into our ever burgeoning schedule. Damn lucky we didn’t come home with another kid from our China junket!

In September, Young A.T. passed the “Milestone of Which We Shall Never Again Speak.” She was radiant and beautiful as always. Her party was enjoyed by all, and was ultimately the buzz of the internet. We didn’t even notice’s photographer – he/she/it just blended right in with family, friends, politicians, famous sports figures, actors and royalty. De rigueur for the Pettys.

For New Years 2008, Young A.T.’s resolution is to stop calling Duke basketball head coach Mike Krxazjfbvnx4ski any name that starts with or includes the words f*#% or s*#%. The line in Vegas is 2 to 5 she can’t make it through the ACC Tournament. Dad has $100 that says she won’t make it past the second TV timeout of the first half of their match-up on February 6th when the Blue Devils come to Chapel Hill. Toly bet her a Wiii she doesn’t make it to the first stoppage of play…for any reason. Basically, that’s easy money. Bank.

In October, Dad had to have rotator cuff surgery to repair an injury from an ATV accident that would have made Evel Knievel proud. He muddled through a September trip to Ireland in some pain which no doubt preventing him from breaking more than one course record (Ballybunion – 64, damn wind). Thankfully he was traveling with three of his best homies -- Goat Boy Hokie, Orange Rob and Jon Bon-Pieja Han Valen. With a little help from Blaser PT, Dad will be back bench pressing small hybrid Toyotas and juggling chain saws by the time you finish reading this letter.

In December, the boys had to have a little more medical work…Dash suffered the ultimate humiliation – the dreaded “ballectomy.” Ouch. He’s OK, but his stream seems a little weak. Gracie is fit as a fiddle, and in control as the alpha female should be. In November we adopted a cat, CoCo (rhymes with loco, as in la mamá y el papá están estúpidos y locos!). She will appear in a cat food commercial on HBO in the spring of 2008 during the season premiere of Big Love. When informed, Gracie hired an agent and Dash requested FloMax.

GP, who turned “Half-Century plus One,” had to suffer through a “buttectomy,” but, as usual, he came out smelling like a rose! Not only was his colonoscopy absolutely perfect, but upon viewing, the attending physician immediately nominated him for Fauquier Healthcare System’s prestigious Colon of the Year Award!

In closing, we truly hope that your family can hope to enjoy the same successes we continue to have year after year. Among other things, the plan in 2009 is for the kids to start a band— The Semi-Naked Cheetah Sisters Band.

Gotta run, flyin’ the kids up to the North Pole to meet Santa in person!

Peace out,
Glenn, Amy, Anna Galina, Toly, Gracie, Dash and CoCo Petty

P.S. As if our luck wasn’t simply over-the-top already, Mr. John Maako, the secretary to Prof. Charles Soludo (the executive governor of the central bank of Nigeria [C.B.N], the parent bank of all commercial banks there in Nigeria) was instructed to initiate contact with us by his boss, the executive governor of the central bank of Nigeria (C.B.N), on an urgent issue, kindly noting that our funds were re-called and re-deposited into the "federal suspense account" of the CBN (C.B.N.) because we did not forward our claim as the right beneficiary. This embarrassed Prof. Soludo, and required prompt action.

Evidently, C.B.N. (a quality local bank, by the way) had $20 million which rightfully belonged to us! Unbelievable. We sent Mr. John Maako our account info, and he wired us the money! We set up a new company, Loch Ness Monster Big Foot LCC, to give $1,000 of the $20 million to charity! Can you believe that? Those wild and crazy Nigerian banks – no wonder they have so little money and so many flies.

P.P.S. Good grief...We almost forgot Halloween! You wouldn’t want to miss that...

Blog Archive