The math says 43%. That was Michigan’s chance, down one, of converting a two-point conversion to beat Ohio Sate who spent this season and last being undefeated by some combination of clubbing baby seal universities, being ineligible for post-season play because Tressel is a mentor and a saint but rules are hard and the truth is slippery, and raw talent. Kicking the field goal sends the game to overtime which in theory should give you a 50% chance of winning. The numbers lacked context though. Anyone watching knew the way the game was trending. Carlos Hyde couldn’t be stopped. Not by the girl he assaulted in the off-season, not by the Columbus Police Department, and certainly not by Michigan’s defense. Numbers are slippery too, and when you put them in context the result was the entire state of Michigan screaming at their TVs to roll the dice.
Honestly at this point, most Michigan fans were salivating at the thought of a 43% chance of being happy. Ever since the start of the second half of the NCAA championship basketball game, Michigan fandom consisted of new and more creative gut punches with increasing intensity. Lots of teams have down years, but Michigan managed it in a way that coupled disappointment with small indicators that things would get better. Hope. The hope is the worst part.
They gambled and they lost, and I was grumpy and everything was meaningless. Sports are dumb, except for when they are awesome, and your quality of life is certainly better if you don’t care about them at all, unless you do care about them while they are in the state of being awesome. My sister and brother-in-law came over for dinner after the game, but I was still a bit checked out. The told us that they were adopting from Ethiopia, and potentially domestically too. They are open to sibling groups, up to four years old. Perspective is useful.
Lots of things happened in 2013 and you can read on if you’d like, but here is the summary: I started more things than I finished. I learned things, but not to my satisfaction. There were plenty of disappointments and things that I wish were different or that I were better at. Those things don’t matter so much though. The biggest changes that occurred in 2013 have stacked the odds in my favor. The kid(s) that my sister and brother-in-law will adopt will bring far more than a 43% shot of happiness. I became married, which is also far in excess of 43%. My family is growing. I’m liking my odds for 2014.
In the grand tradition of being a month behind, it is time to review my life in 2013.