True to our word, Tecmo and I took Latrobe by storm this past weekend. We got in around 11PM on Friday night, and of course, our first move was towards the nearest bar. Over the next 60 hours or so, we spent a cumulative 45 sitting on Tec's friend Bob's couch, driving around the back roads of Latrobe, and drinking $1.20 20 oz. drafts whilst perfecting our respective shuffle board games. The other 15 was spent sleeping and attending Sunday afternoon's training camp practice.
In other words, it was epic.
Unfortunately, we didn't see too many of you out at camp. But that was OK, because by that time we probably wouldn't have been much for conversation anyway. Intelligent conversation, at least.
It is honestly tough to concisely describe exactly how awesome this trip was. I don't think more than 10 minutes went by when I wasn't laughing so hard I nearly pee'd myself. So while I could go on and on about all of the good times we had, I've decided to put together a recap of just the most interesting/entertaining highlights for you all.
I sincerely hope you enjoy.
WHAT WE LEARNED...
1. Six hours is a LONG time to be in a car.
Hoboken to Latrobe didn't look that bad on paper. My general rule of thumb is - take Google's time estimate, subtract about 30 minutes, and that's how long it should take me to reach my destination. Apparently that is not God's rule of thumb, because it definitely took us a good six hours. Needless to say, our bodies were not excited by this.
2. Some backup QBs shouldn't try to be heroes in PRESEASON.
Charlie Batch really needed those extra five or six yards? This wasn't exactly the AFC Championship Game. The first game of the preseason is not the time for a veteran QB - whose job is in no way in jeopardy - to be trying to make something out of a broken play. Thanks for the effort Chuck, but I'd have settled for no gain and a healthy Charlie Batch over a few yards and no Charlie Batch for six weeks. And, Byron Leftwich? Seriously? Vinny Testaverde wasn't available? (Credit for using Testaverde in this "joke" = Tec)
3. Apparently, the Dude lives in Latrobe.
See, here's his car outside Giant Eagle...
4. Hines Ward hates attention.
I mean when people were screaming for the players to come sign autographs after practice, he pretty much ran the other way. Uh, yeah, no. Hines was the center of mass hysteria and seemed to be loving every last minute of it. So was some crazy family right in front of us, which precipitated the comment, "Remember kids, crack kills." Don't ask.
5. If you order from Fox's, beware...
...they're not kidding about a LARGE Stromboli. Instead of us eating this thing, I was worried this thing was gonna eat US. The good news is, it was the best pile of dough, cheese and sauce that I've ever tasted. Five stars, Fox's. Witness...
6. It was awesome to see Casey Hampton practicing again.
It was hard to tell from our spot on the hill in the far end zone, but it definitely looked like Big Snack was trying to shed some extra pounds and get ready for the next 20 weeks. He went through the full two hours or so, and after practice wrapped, we saw him stay to run laps on the third field with LaMarr Woodley. Unless Tomlin has mandated that he do this before he can feed himself, I can only assume this means he's making a legitimate effort to get in shape. Well played, Snack.
7. The guitar solo from "Do You Feel Like We Do" is unbelievable.
If you don't know what I'm talking about, go listen ASAP and tell me I'm wrong.
8. Santonio and Jeff Reed are going to the Pro Bowl.
While listening to the game on DVE Friday night, Tec and I collectively decided that this year is San Antonio and Party Boy's time to shine. I think it had something to do with the TD catch Santonio had and the 50-yard field goal Jeff Reed kicked. Also, let the record show that Tec firmly believes Jeff Reed will be flawless. Like no missed field goals at all. And I find it hard to disagree. Mark it, dudes and dudettes.
9. Giving three idiots walkie-talkies is a recipe for entertainment.
I'd had these walkie-talkies in my apartment for like two years and I'd never used them once. That most certainly changed this weekend. Tec, Tec's friend Bob, and I had way too much fun talking to each other across the room with these things. By the way, just so you know, you have to say "over" after every message. Tecmo...
10. The Latrobe/Greensburg area has great street names.
Urania Ave, Firearms Ln, Rifle Rd. For some reason most of them had to do with guns. But the rest were pretty funny too. It certainly made our three hours of aimless driving on Saturday a little bit more interesting. I can now safely say I've seen all that Latrobe and the surrounding area has to offer.
Not hitting Eat 'n Park at 3AM on Saturday morning was a big mistake. Not getting the Eat 'n Park salad bar at 1:30PM on Saturday afternoon was an even bigger mistake. But the biggest mistake of the weekend was definitely shotgunning beers at 2:30AM Monday morning [when we had to get up before noon and drive the six hours back to NJ].
Lastly, I would like to point out that I'm significantly more manly than I was two hours ago. See, when I got back to Hoboken and was parking my car, a pedestrian kindly alerted me that my back tire was flat on the passenger's side. Which was awesome. Even more awesome though, was changing it. I'm sure you all can imagine my amusement.
So, what did YOU GUYS do this weekend?
PS - This is OFTOT's 500th post. Where's my party?