Mile Marker 128 & UNC’s Buddy Garrity Lives!

October17/ 2010

…. Traffic jams are like toothaches.  They totally dominate your every waking moment while you endure them.  When they have passed, you delete all memory of the intense pain.   This weekend, Blondie and I found ourselves in a Category 5 Humdinger.   We survived, blowing a few temper fuses in the process.

Why do very successful men risk their reputations to be Buddy Garritys ?   If you know Buddy Garrity you know where this is headed.  Otherwise you must endure the traffic jam story.  Either way, you’re already here so you might as well read on ….


It was ten minutes to six Friday night, we were tooling along I-64 in a late model European touring car.  We were seven miles east of The Inn At Monticello ….. our traditional stay at when visiting Mr Jefferson’s neighborhood.  We had no one waiting for us and no fixed plans for the evening.  Neither Blondie nor I had any digestive or urinary disorders.  Life was pretty darn good as we dialogued on obvious solutions to societies ills.  Then we came over the rise at Mile Marker 128 and joined The Traffic Jam From Hell in the Valley Of The Shenandoah.

TWO HOURS and ten minutes later we pulled into the parking lot at The Inn.  Seven miles in 140 minutes at 3.5 mph.  You can pull a piano thru quicksand on a tricycle with three flat ties faster than that.

I’m no neophyte to the not-so-open road.  I’ve put the F-150 in Park on I-95 more than once.  I know why Dallas’ North Central Expressway is known as Texas’ longest parking lot.  I’ve driven from Newark to LaGuardia in the rain at 5 PM on a Friday.  Those experiences left scars in my emotional psyche.  Move over scars here comes a new one.

I was pretty darn adult for the first hour.  Then I began to melt like a Dove Bar in the Mojave.  Facing a line of brake lights for as far as one can see, you just assume “…. it’s a wreck.  They’ll have it cleared up in no time.  We’ve in no hurry.  Gosh, I sure hope no one is badly hurt ….”  My sympathy for hypothetical wreck victims began to fade at the 75 minutes mark.

At the 100 minutes mark I called Kid in Missouri.  Demon Fate had this one in its crosshairs a week ago.  On Monday Kid had “lost it” in a rush hour traffic jam in Columbia MO.  Rush hour in Columbia lasts about as long as one

… keep a straight face at a Sgt Butch press conference.

can keep a straight face at a Sgt. Butch Davis press conference – not very long.  Wise Ol’ Dad admonished his daughter that letting something as silly as traffic “get to one” is not indicative of being ready to take on reality in its rawest form as a big boy/girl.

“Kid? …. Yes, Dad. ….. Remember that mini-lecture I gave you earlier this week about traffic jams. …..  Yes, Dad. …… I need a favor.  …. OK. ….. Give it back to me. ….. Dad, don’t let something as silly as a stoopid ol’ traffic jam get to you. …… Thanks Kid. ….. Is Mom OK? …… Nothing that a bottle of wine and a funnel won’t cure. ….. Call me when you guys are safe and sound. …… Love you Kid. ….. Love you Dad.”

It was not a busload of orphan nuns hit by a terrorist RPG.  It was Road Construction.  Why was THE key westbound artery into Charlottesville shut down on Friday night of a UVa Home FB game.  Only God, Sally Hemming and the VDOT can answer that.

As you all know, UNC broke the 20 years jinx by slaughtering the Hoos to a degree usually reserved for Frank & Bud’s biannual visits to the Pergola.   We occupied our seats on Row Z in the upper deck for a quarter and a half before retiring to The Inn, that aforementioned wine and watching the Rangers and Wisconsin win big’uns. For all our traffic travails, we had a great time as we tend to do on such outings.


Every school has a Buddy Garrity.  If you watch Friday Night Lights, you know Buddy owns Garrity Motors – the #1 car dealer in Dillon, Texas.   Bad Credit – No Credit – No Problem – See Buddy and I’ll put you behind a wheel.

Buddy is THE #1 Fan of The Dillon Panthers.  Buddy Garrity is A Fat Cat.  Panther Wins mean more to Buddy than moving a fleet of Malibus at sticker price plus.

The Texas Interscholastic League has rules about booster involvement.  ‘Dem rules ain’t meant for Buddy.  If it’ll give his Panthers an edge, Buddy’ll do it.   Recruit illegal players ….. alter grades ….. come down on the sidelines in the final minutes and suggest Coach Taylor run Smash on a hook&ladder.  Ol’ Buddy’s liable to do ’bout anything.  Buddy’s marriage and family have gone all to hell but it was worth it.  Buddy’s Dillon Panthers won State.

We’ve pounded BOTBob Winston pretty hard in recent columns.  Lets expand on why.  When Black Santa’s #1 elf – Tweetin’ Marv – pulled the plug on The Carolina Way, BOTBob declared hisownself UNC’s Buddy Garrity.

Bob Winston (Chairman of The UNC Board Of Trustees) is, by all accounts, a quite decent fellow.  Before inserting himself in this Glorious Mess, the only negative anyone could say about Bob is that his ego might be a tad oversized.  If that is a crime, A LOT of us UNCers should be doing hard time.

An Eagle Scout-type, Bob has allowed his desire to be an inner circle Pale Rider pal to override his Trustee role of providing executive oversight.   Bob Winston got drunk on Butch Kool-Aid.

Why do otherwise intelligent successful men like Bob Winston, Paul Fulton, John Ellison, Roger Perry and a few others get all gooey and goofy just to be on a football coach’s speed dial ?  Millions in net worth and all the creature comforts a black AMEX can buy and these galoots go ga-ga to be in Butch’s inner circle.

Some folks never outgrow high school.  Jocks and cheerleaders will always sit atop Life’s pyramid to some folks.  Buddy Garrity LIVES on UNC’s BOT.

When the NCAA’s final verdict is read, Holden and Dickie B will have to face the beady eyes and pointy teeth of the media vultures.  BOTBob and his fellow Fat Cats will be hiding in the weeds – where Fat Cats always go when its time to clean the litter box.


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