Here are notes on matters that didn’t quite seem enough to stand on their own as separate blog posts — but put them all together, and voila!
- With apologies to Green Bay Packers fans: I looked deep in my heart Saturday night to see if I felt even the slightest bit sorry for Aaron Rodgers, the Packers’ quarterback who once again failed to come through in a big game. The Packers, the top seed in the NFC, were stunned 13-10 at home by the San Francisco 49ers. I came up empty — kind of the way Rodgers did in Saturday’s fourth quarter. If you believe in karma, you might think the loss is payback for his entire “I’m immunized” stunt earlier this year. With Saturday’s loss, Rodgers joins an elite club of quarterbacks who have sustained 10 losses in the playoffs; he’s 11-10 overall. And when I say “elite,” I’m not being sarcastic — only six quarterbacks have lost 10 or more times in the postseason, and they’re all either in the Hall of Fame or virtual locks for Canton. Peyton Manning, 14-13 overall in the postseason, has the most losses. Ben Roethlisberger joined the 10-loss club last weekend and is 13-10 overall. Brett Favre was 13-11 in the postseason. Dan Marino was 8-10 in the postseason. The sixth member of the club, now with 12 postseason losses, is Tom Brady — but, as you may have heard, he’s offset that with a ridiculous 35 wins. Of course, the thing about this 10-loss club is that it means you’ve taken your team to the playoffs at least 10 times — although a quarterback can collect three or four playoff wins every season, you can only lose once each year. After Saturday’s loss, Rodgers would seem to be in danger of getting slapped with that Manning label — reliably terrific in the regular season but only so-so in the playoffs. No one says that about Brady.
- Did you catch this fact from Saturday’s 49ers-Packers game: Robbie Gould of the 49ers, who kicked the game-winning field goal, has never missed a field goal in the playoffs. He’s 20 for 20. Now that people are talking about this, watch him miss one next week in the NFC championship game.
- I’m as tired as you are of these foggy and gray days, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have some fun with it. Monday morning, I overheard a pair of bicyclists zipping down a road just before dawn, heading for a hill that they’ve undoubtedly labored over many times before. “Look,” said one of the bicyclists as they peered into the thick fog, “there’s no hill this morning.”
- The remodeling at the Fred Meyer store in Corvallis apparently is finished. Considering the limited footprint the store has to work with (I seem to recall someone telling me once that it’s the smallest store in the chain), it probably was too much to ask that the aisles would be significantly widened. But would it possible for the store to retire some of its huge grocery carts and bring in dozens more of those half-sized carts? Maneuvering one of those big carts through the aisles feels like piloting the Evergreen through the Suez Canal — especially when you have to work your way around an employee collecting the goods for a parking lot delivery.
- I was amused last week by a social-media post from a Corvallis driver urging people to signal their turns as they enter the roundabout at 53rd and Southwest West Hills Road. I mean, of course you should signal your turns, and the roundabout doesn’t change that — if you’re planning on turning right or left, you should signal that. If you’re planning on staying on the road you’re on before entering the roundabout, no need to signal — you’re not turning. It’s exactly the same way you would signal if the roundabout weren’t there. To paraphrase Lily from those endless AT&T ads, it’s not complicated — although, from the start, Corvallis drivers have done everything possible to complicate this roundabout. Get used to it: More roundabouts are coming to Corvallis.
- One last thing: The NFL needs to overhaul its overtime rules, at least for playoff games.