Back to Ann Arbor

With my departure from NBC on Wednesday, I decided it was time to visit my old stomping grounds in Ann Arbor. So I caught this 6:00 AM flight to Detroit on Friday without telling anyone. Showing up at Carmen's place at around 9:00, I ran every possible reaction she could have to my surprise visit in my head - over and over. When Carmen opened her bedroom door, she immediately turned her back and stared in the opposite direction for 10 seconds - not one of the reactions I had envisioned. I then ran up and hugged her from behind and kissed her face. She continued to stare at the wall. It was special.

After catching a little more sleep, it was time to pull the flip on Brady. If you have read his blog, you know it was well executed. The chronology: Initially, he had no idea I was coming. Then he suspected I was going to surprise him. Then he was disappointed I didn't surprise him. At that exact moment, I ran up from behind at BW3 and almost gave him a heart attack.

All flipped out for the day, I headed home early content with my first day back in Ann Arbor.

Waking up around noon on Saturday, my stomach immediately started growling for Ann Arbor's food. Brady and I bum-rushed Blimpy Burger. By far the best meal I've had since leaving Ann Arbor: triple with a fried egg on a Kaiser roll, and splitting orders of french fries and onion rings with Brady. When we got to the cashier (and only when we got there), Brady opened his empty wallet.

Ah, just like old times.

Once our faces were stuffed, Brady and I were so full we could barely move. But we also realized we didn't have enough time to enjoy all the food Ann Arbor had to offer. I suddenly had an epiphany: go out in the snow, stick our hands down our throats, puke everything back up and head to Pancheros. Sad to say, we pussed out.

The M Cagers got absolutely hammered by Michigan State. The highlight actually came before the game, when the warmups became the Brent Petway showcase. For those that don't attend hoops games, it's really a surreal scene. The only people on the court for about a half hour were the Michigan players, just shooting layups and jumpers by their lonesome. And whenever Brent Petway was up, he would try some new highlight reel dunk. He even threw one ball off the shot clock once. I have no idea where Michigan State or Tom Izzo were - prolly drawing up plays in the lockerroom.

Leaving with about 15 minutes left in the contest, Brady, Carmen and I headed back to her place to watch The Notebook. The movie was absolute crap. I strongly discourage anyone from seeing it unless you have to pick between that, The Human Stain and Garden State.

Saturday night was also filled with face stuffing. A whole group of us went to Pizza House. As usual, Brady and I slammed down pepperoni stix and pizza. It was delicious. Afterward, Brady commented on how well behaved I was. Good thing I didn't tell him about shitting in the Pizza House urinal just for kicks.

The night was filled with dancing at the Necto. It was my first trip there. Brady made fun of my dancing and I'll be the first to admit, I sucked big time. But I didn't sweat through my shirt. Now that would be really embarassing. Right, Brady?

Sunday was rather quiet. Quick recap: breakfast at Angelos; stopping by the Daily for nice chats with John Lowe, Sharad Mattu and Ian Herbert; watching Mean Girls at Carmen's while she slept.

When I got to the airport, I pointed out that Lloyd Carr was on our flight.

I know it's ridiculous, but this gave me some sort of comfort - knowing Coach Carr was on our flight. It was as if the probability of a plane crash was cut in half. I mean, a Michigan football coach could NOT go out like a new jack in a plane crash. Unfortunately, once we started to board the plane, Lloyd headed with a new buddy of his to the gate for Fort Meyers, Florida. Just like that, the probability of a crash doubled because I realized I could TOTALLY go out like a new jack.

It was a decent flight, though. Except for the guy next to me. Weighing in at about 275 pounds, he had a smoker's cough and blew his noise in between hacks. It was a disgusting. And infuriating. Then he blocked my view of the Manhattan skyline upon descent. In a fit of rage, I convinced myself fat people deserved how society treats them. It was a pretty sick thought and I apologize for it.

Guy Next To Me: if you are reading this, I'm sorry.

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