Friday, January 21, 2005

Betting the Ranch!

(The following post is from an earlier attempt at blogging this year. It was imported from a blog I called "Clean Living Through Chicanery")
The disappointing showing of the Pittsburgh Steelers in their win last week against the New York Jets has created an interesting phenomenon in Western Pennsylvania. The Stillers poor performance contrasted with the drubbing the New England Patriots gave the favored Indianapolis Colts caused the American public to tilt the betting line toward the Patriots by 3 points. The +3 points the Steelers would normally get for being the home team suggests that the betting universe believes that the spread would be 6 points in favor of the Pats on a neutral field. This despite the fact that:The Steeler's # 1 defense in the NFL actually only gave up 3 points against the Jets.
The Steeler's beat the hell out of the Patriots on both sides of the ball when they played on October 31.
No team has been able to stop the Steelers running attack even when its two ace running backs (Bettis and Staley) have been hurt.The Pats got beat recently when they played the Miami Dolphins who had the second worse record in the NFL this past season.The Steelers managed to beat the Buffalo Bills (who gave the Pats a tough time both times they faced each other) even though the Bills needed the win to be in the playoff and the game was meaningless to the Stillers who used a majority of second and third string players.
Previously we mentioned our "Yinzers" with regard to their alcoholic habits. Another thing they are known for is betting heavily on the locals. Legend has it that yinzer families in the 70's would bet enormous amounts of money during the successful years that the Steelers dominated the NFL even to the extent of placing additional mortgages on their homes to get betting capital. Now the locals are certain because of the above reasons that the Steelers will win this Sunday and are betting every extra dollar they can get their hands on.
Our local bookies are reportedly upset about this situation because in modern times they have to adhere to the national line out of Las Vegas and 85 % of the local money is being bet on the Steelers.
Either our Yinzers or our bookies are going to be in serious financial trouble come Monday morning.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Yinzers Take Over the World!

(The following post is from an attempt at blogging I did earlier in the year. It was imported from a blog I called "Clean Living Through Chicanery")
This morning I took the lightrail into the City of Pittsburgh in order to become a member of the studio audience at the Mike and Mike Show, a national morning radio show out of Bristol, Connecticut which is simulcast on ESPN NEWS TV Cable Channel. Mike Golic and Mike Greenberg were in Pittsburgh to highlight the second round NFL playoff game between my Pittsburgh Steelers (pronounced locally "Stillers") and the New York Jets taking place tomorrow (Saturday Jan 15 at 4:30 PM EST).
I arrived at the Marriott Centre City Hotel at 6:10 AM approximately 3 minutes after the show had begun. Already packed into an off lobby bar designed to hold about 40 guests were approximately 180 screaming fans similar to myself packed in shoulder to shoulder. Because of a cardiovascular problem I have I can't stand on my feet too long so I went looking for somewhere to sit down. I found it in the lobby where four others had already commandeered easy chairs and arranged them in front of the lobby's 32 inch plasma TV which was showing Mike and Mike via close-circuit. I grabbed an empty chair and set it up near the TV. Two others joined us during the next twenty minutes.
Mike and Mike were their usual entertaining selves... in addition to commentating on the current sports scene they also interviewed live Dave Wannstadt, the new Pitt head football coach, Bill Cowher, the Steeler coach and Jack Ham, a hall of fame linebacker, from the 70's Steelers.
The memory I will take away from this otherwise fun event is the observation of five of the six people sitting around me in the lobby.
At 7:00 AM the bar opened. Beer sales were announced and five of my seatmates ordered their first beers. Between seven and eight three of them had consumed a second beer and had obtained a "bloody mary' which they opined was excellent. The other two had a third beer. All of them continued to buy beer (some for each other). Noone from the hotel was collecting the empties and by 10:00 AM when the broadcast ended there were 33 "dead soldiers" arrayed in front of the group. The sixth person was drinking coffee and I had a 10 oz bottle of orange juice.
Now I know some people have a problem with booze and this was a rather festive atmosphere, but 7 drinks each within three hours!(?)! And Noon is still 2 hours away and the game is 30 hours away...
Local sportcasters speak derisively about "yinzers".. supposedly drunk Steeler fans whose minds and bodies are still stuck in the 70's. I wonder how good beer sales were in the bar itself. Not to be critical...

Speakeasy Speed Test