WHITHER WATER ??

Mike Moffettby Mike Moffett
Weirs Times Columnist

We’re spoiled around here. We have plenty of water—even too much sometimes. California’s not so lucky. Governor Jerry Brown is imposing a 25% cutback in water usage there. But that’s easier said than done. Such a cutback applied to agriculture would mean massive crop loss. Can you say “exemption?”
There are countless swimming pools in California, and some of these pools provide water for potential fire-fighting during the dry season, which lasts around 11 months. Can you say “exemption?”
So what about schools trying to comply with the mandated reductions by not watering athletic fields? Artificial turf could be the answer for some school athletic facilities, but that means mucho dinero. Will football teams play on dirt? Another exemption?
But what about golf courses, the bane of Golden State environmentalists? The California links community is worried. They can’t have the greens turn brown. Exemption, please?
Maybe artificial turf is an option for golf courses. Hmmm. I’m not sure how practical that might be, but I like the idea of short roughs that never need to be cut!
Anyway, too many exemptions means California will run out of water. Perhaps showers could be outlawed. There’s a reason why the Good Lord created those swimming pools!

SECOND CHANCES?
By a 15-3 vote, the Ohio State of Board of Education granted a three-year “coaching” permit to Jeffrey Cargile Sr., a convicted felon. In 2003, Cargile was convicted of abduction and later failed mandatory drug tests. After he paid his debt to society and wanted to help coach schoolboy football, he was told he was banned for life. But Cargile spent years trying to prove that he was a new, different man— desperate for a chance. So I was happy to see the Columbus Dispatch report that the Board gave him an opportunity to work with young people after Cincinnati school educators and coaches described Cargile as a respected member of the Taft High School football community who could share life lessons and be a positive role model for players.
Good for the state board and good for Cargile. There is a place for second chances. Hopefully he won’t screw up. If an assistant coaching gig can give Cargile hope for a better future then that’s yet another example of sport redeeming lost souls.

THE WHEELS OF JUSTICE ….
… turn ever more slowly. Why did it take so long for convicted New England Patriot murderer Aaron Hernandez to get to court? Did his trial really need to be dragged out so long? And we all knew Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was guilty of the Boston Marathon bombings over TWO years ago. And yet we had this protracted trial anyway. Now we remain in the midst of the sentencing phase—which is taking weeks. The only question is whether or not Tsarnaev gets the death penalty. Even if he gets the death penalty, appeals will drag this out for years to come. Yes, protracted trials means tax-payer funded bonanzas for some lawyers, but can’t we do better? Justice delayed is justice denied and creates endless pain for victims and others who want and deserve closure.

ANGELS ROAD RACE – MAY 1
Sport immortalizes names through such things as the Stanley Cup, the Heisman Trophy, or the Red Auerbach Award. Wrigley Field has immortalized an iconic Chicago family. Memorial events like Keene’s annual Clarence DeMar Marathon also commemorate and honor special people,
Closer to home we’ll have a special “Angels” 5K Road race at Merrimack Valley High School in Penacook on Friday, May 1, at 6:15 p.m. The “Angels” are former MVHS students tragically claimed by accident way before their time. Participating runners not only support MVHS scholarships but also keep the angels’ memories alive. As long as runners run, these angels remain with us, in a fashion.
Runners or walkers can register on-line at www.angel5k.com. Race day registrants are also welcome.

Sports Quiz
What was the first Major League Baseball team to fly to a game? (Answer follows)

Born Today …
That is to say, sports figures born on April 30 include former Detroit Piston All-Star Isiah Thomas (1961).

Sportsquote
“Relax? How can anybody relax and play golf? You have to grip the club, don’t you?”
– Golf great Ben Hogan

Sportsquiz Answer
The Cincinnati Reds flew from Cincinnati to Chicago to play the Cubs on June 8 1934.

Michael Moffett is a Professor of Sports Management at NHTI, Concord’s Community College. He recently co-authored the critically-acclaimed “FAHIM SPEAKS: A Warrior-Actor’s Odyssey from Afghanistan to Hollywood and Back” (with the Marines) —available through Amazon.com. His e-mail is mimoffett@comcast.net.