1. It’s Thursday, November 17, 2016.
2.On this day 48 years ago, I was watching the New York Jets play the Oakland Raiders. The Jets had just taken the lead in a tough contest, and there was about a minute to play.
My sister, who had just turned seven, was excited about the prospect of a TV special scheduled after the game. It was a production of “Heidi.”
I could, of course, care less. The Jets were close to a big win against a big rival.
But as the Jets kicked off to Oakland at exactly 7 p.m., the black-and-white football field – we didn’t get our first color TV set until a month later – instantly became some black-and-white Swiss Alp village.
NBC, which was airing the game, had committed to airing “Heidi” at 7 p.m. sharp. And that’s what happened.
That didn’t sit well with me and other Jets fans. Being only 14, I wasn’t going to make a fuss beyond complaining to my unsympathetic parents – they weren’t into football then.
Apparently, people who did make a fuss fried the NBC switchboard with complaints. The network was forced to apologize – particularly after it turned out the Jets would go on to lose the game and everybody who rooting for them in New York missed it.
Nowadays, that would never happen. In fact, nowadays, that doesn’t happen because this happened. Games run until they’re over.
During the games, the play-by-play announcer will occasionally interject that whatever non-football thing you were planning to watch will air immediately after the conclusion of this 42-7 blowout involving two teams you could care less about.
3. I hadn’t thought about the anger I felt about the Heidi Bowl in a long time.
I don’t imagine that will be the case with the 2016 election. Although, given that I’m 62, I doubt I’ll be around in 2064 to know if the anger of 48 years past ever subsided.
The anger gets restirred anytime I see a story about who Trump is considering for his regime. Although I have to say I wasn’t as upset to see South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley’s name bandied about for Secretary of State – I certainly would rather have her than Giuliani the deranged or Iraq War cheerleader John Bolton.
4. Last night, the other emotion of the past nine days – sadness – resurfaced. That’s because Hillary Clinton spoke.
She appeared at a Children’s Defense Fund ceremony in Washington honoring children who have fought through personal adversity with the organization’s help.
Clinton began her career working with the fund when she was a student in law school. She and fund founder Marian Wright Edelman are obviously very close – although I seem to remember some friction when Clinton was First Lady.
The speech was mostly about the children – as it should have been – and what people can and should do to focus on making the kids’ lives better.
But there were moments when she reflected on the campaign. She urged her supporters to keep working toward their goals.
“We need you. America needs you, your energy, your ambition, your talent,” Clinton said. “That is how we get through this.”
She also got a little emotional talking about her late mother, who was orphaned when she was eight, placed on a train with her little sister and sent to live with relatives in California.
Clinton said he imagined going back in time to talk to her mother as a little girl in order to give her strength.
“I dream of going up to her, and sitting next to her and taking her in my arms and saying, ‘Look, look at me and listen. You will survive. You will have a family of your own: three children,'” she said. “And as hard as it might be to imagine, your daughter will grow up to be a United States senator, represent our country as Secretary of State, and win more than 62 million votes for President of the United States.”
That last phrase got a roar from the crowd. And it was a not-so-subtle reminder that Trump got more than 61 million – at this writing, 1,232,214 fewer votes than she did.
In introducing Clinton, Edelman referred to her as the “people’s president.”
There is usually no such thing. But these are not usual times.
The idea that there are people who are going to suggest that Hillary Clinton really won last week isn’t going to sit well with the thin-skinned guy who won the Electoral College. It will be interesting to see how he deals with her and those who still raise her banner in the coming days and weeks.