101 days left. I’m going to assume that you do not want to spend all 101 days hearing about what I cleaned in the store or the current number of beers in the refrigerator. So I think I need to introduce you to some of the characters we’ve met during the years at Stadium View.
Actually we didn’t meet “the man in the red chair” at the College World Series. We introduced him to it. His real name is Ryan. My friends,Wacko, Garv and I met him on a trip to Chicago. We went to see a volleyball tournament and a Bears game. Garv’s daughter was playing volleyball and he was already in Chicago. Waco picked me up at abut 5:30 a.m. to catch the plane and we each had three on the way to the airport. Three more on the plane and we were in pretty good shape before Garv picked up us at Midway and we headed to a liquor store. It was a long ride to the hotel(three more for Wacko, one for me) and you can imagine the surprise of the denizens at the continental breakfast in the lobby of the hotel when Wacko walked in and greeted everyone with a booming, “Hello Citizens”.
Two hours later we’re looking for a local pub and some sports on TV. We found it and began our relationship with “the man in the red chair”. After Wacko insulted the local citizenry, we befiriended them. Ryan was the owner and was also a certified sports accountant (bookie). We naturally hit it off well and the friendship ended up with Wacko inviting him to the CWS and the View, likes he owns it.
Oh by the way I observed a personal record on that day. Wacko passed out three times at differnet public places, the last one by falling asleep in his food at 2:00 a.m. at the local restaurant.
Ryan made it to the College World Series two years later. He stayed for most of the series but at some point his consumption for alcohol was overcome by his true passion, gambling. He decided he was going to book the series. And what better place than the corner of 13th and B, the View. Since the street is blocked off during the series, he decided to put his red chair in the middle of 13th Street and set up business. He posted the betting lines in handwritten form on the telephone pole on a piece of cardboard.
Now his experience was a refreshing look at the good side of humanity. Here’s a five foot three, wiseass with a Chicago accent sitting in the middle of 13th Sreet in Omaha, Nebraska trying to run a bookie operation. He would just as soon insult you as take your bet. He had people coming up and betting the games with him, handing him literally hundreds of dollars in cash to hold until after the game and trusting he and his red chair would be there to pay off if they won. Can you imagine that happening in Chicago, New York, L.A., or any other major venue where the Final Four or the BCS championship game might take place. I Can’t. But it happened at the CWS in Omaha.
I did have to vouch for his integrity when the guys from Texas wanted to place a five hundred dollar bet on the Texas game. But “the man in the red chair” ran a class operation, and the local law enforcement just walked by and shook their heads in disbelief. So did I.
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