Headaches, Heartbreak, and High Blood Pressure

Steven J. WardContributor IMarch 11, 2009

The babes are placed comfortably in their crib, tucked away cozy, warm, ready for a long and peaceful sleep a mother smiles as she gentle touches her treasure turns away; the kids are finishing up their homework as their minds race with the promise of staying up a little later this night.

Soon everyone collects in the family room making full use of its very design and a quiet chatter begins, dad hastens in, falling like a thud into his favorite leather recliner and takes the remote from the end table. Excitedly he takes aim and fires, the dull onyx finish of the new plasma responds like a Fourth of July celebration and a thousand colors, hues, and various shapes begin their dance.

"C'mon dad its gonna start" echos from somewhere behind him as he feels his way along the slightest ridges and plastic ripples until his highly trained fingers find the corresponding numbers to the programing plight.

Suddenly painted across the 50-inch face of mount fantastic screams ESPN! A cheer saturates the family room and dad slides back, reclines and exhales as a smile tweaks his lips. The Chips are set on one end of the coffee table, popcorn on the other and the drinks consist of various flavors of Gatorade.

"Keep those caps tight boys," sings mom, "we don't need anymore stains."

"Sure we do," giggles one of the boys. It's NCAA time, The Big Dance, etc...Everything is right with the world. I'm certain Browning wrote this as he watched his first "Dance"

The night proceeds in the predictable ebb and flow of the highly contested games running madly abound. Shouts of joy, cries of anger, yippees and "O for @#$%# sake" fumes from the more adult factions. The game(s) wind down well into the second half and the couch no-longer has its cushions or afghan, the boys are rolling around like marbles and dad is standing up as if at the stadium itself.

A minute left and the intensity is incredible: 30-second time out! "Where's your mother?" bellows dad, "She went to get the baby cause she was screaming," said boys in unison. "When did the baby wake up," asks dad? "About a minute into the game," echoes Mom disgustedly.

March Madness the first game, at the typical American home. What a fantastic way to bring a family together. All 65 teams from around the USA inviting new and future fans to board their wagons, fairweather or otherwise.

That ugly horn sounds the final seconds peel away everyone on their feet now tense and trembling, from mid-court?..."Nooooo, not again!" screams the family in unison. "I can't believe it, @#!$%$#@!" yells Dad, Mom and a quick "#@" from the kids! The first round? "Duke lost again!"