Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Readying For the Big Day

So, the big weekend is upon us, and I'm finally prepared to fully take in the experience. So many years in the recent past I've screwed it up. Last year I worked both the Thursday and Friday of the tournament (with breaks to see the regionals in Milwaukee, of course). The year before most of the big weekend fell on my final spring break trip ever, which would have been awesome if I hadn't decided to visit a friend in England, where basketball news was nearly impossible to come by. Only two years prior to that I also messed up my basketball watching by traveling abroad another time. And while my wallet may be fatter from my work, and my mind may be broadened by my travels, just think of all the basketball that I missed. So this year, I'm taking off Friday, heading up to Madison to watch a full slate of high school games, and filling in the gaps with trips to bars to watch more basketball. With the group that I'm meeting up with, it's guaranteed to be fun.

This, however, does leave the question of how to handle Thursday. Thursday night's no problem at all--I have the cable split to four televisions in my living room and several cases of cold beer ready to be consumed. Thursday afternoon was somewhat problematic, but has been solved by the good people at CSTV. I've long been a fan of the CSTV network, having ordered my digital sports package through my cable company for the express purpose of receiving their channel. However, this year they're taking things to a new level, and streaming video feeds of the first 56 games over the web. So now, with this package, I'll be able to catch the UWM-Alabama game while I'm at work tomorrow. The package normally sells for $19.95, but for readers of my blog (and several others), they're offering a $5 discount. That's $15.95 for the first 56 games of the tournament. If you're not in a great area like me where you can get most games free through your cable provider, or you just want to catch a game or two on your work computer, I'd say that's a great deal. Take advantage here:

Apologies for talking like a commercial there, but it's honestly something that I had been considereing ordering anyway, before CSTV contacted me and offered up sweet deals for you and me. This is the type of technology that will help bring us closer to actually getting these two days declared holidays, so check it out.

One final thought--I was a tad apprehensive about breaking the news to my father (who's also my boss) that I would have access to video feeds of the first round games while at work, and did so gingerly. The reaction I got was somewhat startling, as he essentially demanded that I fire up the video tomorrow because he wanted to watch the UWM game. He then noted to me "The only problem that I see you having with that is that no one around here will want to leave your office all day." True enough. Now, if only I could find a way to get work done while there's a basketball party in my office, I'd be set. Sadly, I think most of the day will be spent tying up loose ends before my Friday vacation.

Happy viewing as always, and with any luck I'll find some time on Saturday or Sunday to recap the orgy of basketball that is the opening weekend of the tourney.


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