Thursday, March 11, 2010

Time to Pack a Bag

If you do not like college basketball, and you live with someone who does--it is time to pack a bag and get out of town for a few days--or get your spouse the weekend rate at the Marriott.

I noticed in today's newspaper that on my local cable outlet that there are no fewer than 20 basketball games that will be available on television. Today is a Thursday, not a Saturday. I do not have direct tv or any sort of satellite dish. I am not referring to any package that includes special sports channels. There are 20 basketball games on regular cable stations today should people in the Boston area wish to immerse themselves in the action. Every one of these games will be interrupted periodically because each station has sold advertising time for the programs/games. This means that the production managers for the networks or stations believe that televising these games will yield an audience sufficient to obtain a spike in advertising revenue.

I'm not surprised. Yesterday I had the good fortune to speak to an alumni group at my university about The Madness of March. I hope it was as much fun for the audience to listen to my remarks as it was for me to give them. There were several interesting questions after the talk. A man asked me who the quirkiest character I ever met was while attending the games. I should have a stock answer for this question as it has been asked on a number of occasions. The fact is that there are so many fans who could legitimately get that award, I am hard pressed to select the most idiosyncratic. A woman asked how people decide where to go to watch the games. Another gentleman asked if I had encountered any gamblers who identified themselves as professional gamblers. A woman wanted to know if I have ever won. (An easy answer to that). There were several other questions as well which made the evening even more fun. It was a joy to hear someone say that he had already read the book, had been to Las Vegas during march madness on two occasions, and that I had nailed the atmosphere and characters in the Madness of March. It was very good to hear that.

I received a note early this week from a kind reader who told me that he too enjoyed the book. He also wrote that there is a website set up for those who travel to Las Vegas for March Madness. If you visit it, you will see that many who intend to go, are literally counting off the hours to when they will pack their bag for the annual pilgrimmage. The url for the site is:

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