Holiday Stuff II

December 17

To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake it is necessary to stand out in the cold. ~ Aristotle

A beautiful sight, we’re happy tonight walking in a winter wonderland. ~ Richard Bernard Smith

Ladies and gentlemen, here is your 2021-22 Alexandria Cardinals boys basketball team, currently off to a 5 – 0 season start and acting like they would like to make up for finishing one game short of being state champions last year. Let’s hope the pandemic doesn’t throw a monkey wrench into the affair – unlike college, high school athletes unfortunately can’t be granted another year of eligibility.

[The babies were certainly excited about the basketball game as they opted to preview the preliminary activities from on high . . . ]

Cats can work out mathematically the exact place to sit that will cause most inconvenience. ~ Pam Brown

The problem with cats is that they get the same exact look whether they see a moth or an ax-murderer. ~ Paula Poundstone

There is, incidentally, no way of talking about cats that enables one to come off as a sane person. ~ Dan Greenberg

Dogs come when they’re called; cats take a message and get back to you later. ~ Mary Bly

After scolding one’s cat one looks into its face and is seized by the ugly suspicion that it understood every word. And has filed it for reference. ~ Charlotte Gray

Cats know what “No, No, No!” means. They just won’t acknowledge that they do! ~ Me

[And then it was on to AAHS for the boys basketball game vs. St. Cloud Tech . . . ]

[It’s semester (or quarter) break at the University of Minnesota, so Treyton Thompson, current Gopher and ex-Cardinal, was home for the holidays and decided to drop in on the activities . . .

[Treyton is a freshman at the U and scored his first varsity point in their last game . . . ]

[Of course Tech players didn’t mind sharing shooting practice with him . . . ]

[At 6’11”, he prefers to play an outside game . . . ]

[The JV (in white here), which was undefeated last year (which the head coach said never happens anywhere), has also started off this season undefeated and has some nice players . . . ]

[And on the JV team is Treyton’s little brother, 6’4″ freshman Chase (41), who has an all-around game and may get some varsity playing time this year . . . ]

[Another impressive win . . . ]

[When the Tech varsity took floor, it looked like a college team (check out the heights). Coach Witt said at season’s start that Tech and Sauk Rapids would be our stiffest conference competition . . . ]

[Tech warming up . . . ]

[The Cardinals warming up – we would definitely be at height a disadvantage . . . ]

[And for the starting lineups . . . ]

[Which will be captured by the Amazing Mr. Ripley . . . ]

[Carter Steffensmeier (0), 6′ senior guard . . . ]

[Myles Sansted (11), 6’1″ senior guard . . . ]

[Kristen Hoskins (21), 5’10” senior guard . . . ]

[Steffensmeier and Sansted would combine for more than 40 points in the game . . . ]

[Erik Hedstrom (22), 6’5″ senior forward . . . ]

[Grayson Grove (33), 6’8″ sophomore center . . . ]

Headmasters have powers at their disposal with which Prime Ministers have never yet been invested. ~ Winston Churchill

[Anatomy of the jump ball . . . ]

[OK, we had a one inch height advantage at center with Grayson because their 6’9″ player doesn’t start . . . ]

Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing worth knowing can be taught. ~ Oscar Wilde

The human brain is special. It starts working as soon as you get up and it doesn’t stop until you get to school. ~ Milton Berle

The Founding Fathers in their wisdom decided that children were an unnatural strain on parents. So they provided jails called schools, equipped with tortures called an education. ~ John Updike

[Grayson won the tip . . . ]

In grade school I was smart, but I didn’t have any friends. In high school, I quit being smart and started having friends. ~ David Spade

No wonder the teacher knows so much; she has the book. ~ Edgar Watson Howe

Education costs money, but then so does ignorance. ~ Claus Moser

My school days were the happiest days of my life; which should give you some indication of the misery I’ve endured over the past twenty-five years. ~ Paul Merton

My father wanted me to have all the educational opportunities he never had, so he sent me to a girls school. ~ Jack Herbert

My school was so tough the school newspaper had an obituary section. ~ Norm Crosby

[The three Tigers in this shot were all pretty good players; of course, so were the four Cardinals in the shot . . . ]

[Myles Sansted shooting free throws. Unfortunately, the camera decided to focus on the student cheering section . . . ]

[He’s in focus here – he makes all his free throws, BTW . . . ]

[An example of the Cardinals in-your-face defense . . . ]

[If the opponent passes the ball to either corner, that player is immediately double-teamed, here by Carteer and Grayson, and has to dial 9-1-1 . . . ]

[Grayson makes it tough getting the ball to the interior . . . ]

[No. 30 (6’6″) for the Tigers did bag a couple of 3’s . . . ]

[A major Cardinal strength is depth, necessary for the all court pressing. Here Elijah Vandeveer (45), 6’4″ senior sinks a free throw . . . ]

[Good game so far – nothing settled at the half . . . ]

[And Treyton joins the half time half court shot extravaganza . . . ]

[The Cards came out in the second half on fire and quickly established a comfortable lead they would maintain the rest of the game . . . ]

[A Card strength is picking off passes and taking the ball in for fast break layups . . . ]

[Grayson popped a 3 from this corner at some point in the game . . . ]

[A time out called by the Tigers – judging by the reaction of the Cardinal bench we had just been on another scoring run . . . ]

[It was still a tad early but the student section started the chant of “start the bus”. . . ]

[Carter shooting free throws, Wyatt Odland (13), 6′ senior guard, started last year but still gets plenty of playing time . . . ]

[Jaxon Schoenrock (4), 6’4″ junior, povides defensive pressure off the bench . . . ]

[Grayson shooting free throws; Peter Sansted (12) (yup, Myles’ twin brother), 6’1″ senior in the lane . . . ]

[The sophomore is learning fast, schmoozing with the ref . . . ]

[OK, let’s wrap up this puppy . . . ]

[A big time win – but we have to be aware we may have to beat them two more times to win the section . . . ]

December 18

[And the next morning a Christmas snow came to Noonan’s Park . . . ]

It was the kind of snow that brought children running out their doors, made them turn their faces skyward, and spin in circles with their arms outstretched. ~ Eowyn Ivey

Blow, blow, thou winter wind, thou art not so unkind as man’s ingratitude. ~ William Shakespeare

Snow provokes responses that reach right back to childhood. ~ Andy Goldsworthy

In the depth of winter, I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer. ~ Albert Camus

I know now, I know a little more how much a simple thing like a snowfall can mean to a person. ~ Sylvia Plath

[And ending on Maple Street, my favorite Christmas street, particularly in the early evening when the old-fashion globe street lights come on . . . ]

The very fact of snow is such an amazement. ~ Roger Ebert

A lot of people like snow. I find it to be an unnecessary freezing of water. ~ Carl Reiner

Up Next: There’s a girls basketball game tonight . . .

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