Though only barely, due to an unfortunate mechanical failure resulting in a horrific and untimely crash that would be only slightly worse if he were referring to either of his return flights from mostly sunny California.
One of the occupational hazards of this blogging biz is complete reliance on incredible machines that, for a mind geared to the editorial rather than the technical (like SMQ's), become inanimate foci of bewildered, frustrated rage when they don't function properly. Or, in the case of SMQ's personal laptop - the one and same that crashed and burned at the beginning of the season - don't function at all. Such is the case this morning, erasing a hard night/early morning's work, with ramifications well past the blog. This sort of thing never happens with Glenn Reynolds, or even, it seems, Subcommandante Wayne, and therefore is embarassing and frustrating.
Currently, SMQ is posting from a super-secret, super-temporary emergency backup, from whence he'll soon advance to his more at-the-ready techno fallback and regular inconsistencies will resume. But this is an unfortunately necessary signoff through the weekend until that point. Dammit.
A couple notes in the interim:
Blog Rollin': In hypocritical fashion, it turns out, SMQ dropped sidebar members who haven't gotten around to posting in a while or don't get around to posting with any sort of regularity, have devolved into message board fare and/or prominently feature customized South Park characters as a permanent design element. Nothing against South Park, but you know.
Other worthy contenders have been admitted, most of them long-time oversights. That group be:
Corn From a Jar
Double Extra Point
Eagle In Atlanta
Fire Mark May
Fresno State Football Blog
On College Football
State Fans Nation
Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician
Make SMQ proud, sirs - and on that note, since they are still all sirs, SMQ is open in the name of Title IX to applications from a capable female college footblogger with the pioneering cajones to smash the cheauvanist glass ceiling of sidebar Boy's Clubs across the blogosphere. What are we afraid of, guys? Being shown up by someone who probably - and quite reasonably - doesn't yet exist?
Playoffs?! You wanna talk about playoffs?! SMQ's playoff-based Debate to End All Debates for All-Time with Mayor Kyle remains on the distant off-season agenda, but everybody and his undercover FBI agent chat room "buddy" is filling the pre-bowl lull with tournament madness. Most insightfully, we have MGoBlog, somewhat initiating the immediate discussion, as usual, as well as Saurian Sagacity earning his new link and SMQ's eternal respect and envy for more or less proving what SMQ has only sort of feebly insinuated by boldly stating: "There is no national championship." All the better from a writer whose school of choice stands to win one of the mythical variety in three weeks or so.
SMQ attempts to assess ESPN Classic's All-Time Greatest College Football Playoff
On the other end, most maddening, and futile, and - to quote highly-paid participant Kirk Herbstreit - ridiculous! was The Worldwide Leader's weird, ongoing obsession with crowning an all-time national champion among an arbitrarily-chosen field of 32 mythical champs with no standards whatsoever. Having learned its lesson by prematurely measuring up Southern Cal's posterity last December, ESPN backed off the Ohio State love, turning the very official results over to extremely objective, well-researched and honest online voters. And still Rece Davis wound up instantly refereeing a juvenile shout-fest due to the overbearing presences of Herbstreit at the "Players' Table" and the always-entertaining, rarely-sober/unarmed Barry Switzer on the coaches' side. How would the awesome Glenn Davis-Doc Blanchard Army teams stack up against Texas' 2005 champs six decades hence? SMQ imagines Army, a segregated squad whose largest player in 1945 was 20 pounds lighter than Texas' superfreak quarterback, would be in extreme physical danger. If Texas was allowed to block using modern techniques without being penalized every down, that is. Or if time machines existed.
The existential pain of considering the many-tiered levels of this project's abject, unabashed, enraging, sub-sixth grade absurdity are too great to sustain. SMQ grows weary of such contemplation.
Award-Mania: December=self-congratulatory filler across the barren media wasteland, and everyone does so love award shows. Typically, SMQ opposes enshrining matters of taste with "official" honors, because people end up feeling bad and the folks who already get most of the attention wind up being further, needlessly validated, anyway, when the product and success can sufficiently stand alone. The BlogPoll Awards Brian and Joel are putting on, at least, serve to expose our burgeoning, ad hoc clique to the rest of what's out there. SMQ, not being a prolific blog-troller, is pleased with lots of what's been brought to his attention in the nominating process. His own ballot remains empty for the moment, and won't be made public here once he's had time to look over some old individual posts and new/smaller blogs and it's submitted. But, if you have a college football blog, and you're in doubt, come on, dude, you know you're on there.
Troy Smith Shocks the World!: Upsetting Maxwell winning, LSAT-acing perfection personified Brady Quinn, Ohio State's Troy Smith sucks the Heisman into his irresistible gravitational field of understated superiority. Darren McFadden is impressed.
Which brings SMQ to his first weekly Buckeye Watch, catching up on OSU between its clinching Nov. 18 win over Michigan and its appearance in the mythical title game on Jan. 8:
Twenty-six days and counting: Hang in there, Baby