Odds and Ends, Part 7

SEEMS LIKE OLD TIMES

I mentioned earlier that Dick Vitale has picked UNC to win the national championship in basketball next year and thought that might be the end of it. I was wrong again as a web site titled "sportsinteraction.com" which is gambling oriented has come out with its pre-season odds for various college teams to win it all next year and guess what. The odds for UNC to cut down the nets in the last game are 9-1 which is the lowest odds listed. Not every team in America is listed but all of the major contenders are. However, before you go out and bet a passel of money on the Heels to be national champions maybe you should give it a little thought. Gamblers, contrary to what many people think, do not try to pick winners. They try to split the gambling public in half when two teams are playing. Pre-season prognostications are similar in that, in both instances, you have to have a starting point. So one could argue that the pre-season rankings are for expectations not the actual winner since it would represent the starting point far in advance of the season itself. Still it's nice to be back with the big boys again and I, for one, am appreciative. I have a new found appreciation for Carolina basketball after the 8-20 season. I've been to the valley so I'm in a better position to appreciate the mountain top.

The list for the top 18 are as follows:

1. UNC...................................9-1
2. Duke.................................11-1
3. Wake Forest......................13-1

4. Illinois...............................15-1
5. Louisville ..........................15-1

6. UConn...............................15-1
7. Kansas...............................16-1
8. Georgia Tech......................16-1

9. N.C. State...........................17-1
10.Maryland............................19-1
11.Kentucky.............................21-1
12.Arizona...............................23-1
13.Alabama.............................23-1
14.Oklahoma State..................23-1
15.Cincinnati...........................26-1
16.Syracuse............................26-1
17.Wisconsin..........................31-1
18.Pitt....................................31-1
19.Florida...............................31-1
20.Michigan State...................31-1
21.Stanford.............................31-1

ISN'T ANYTHING
FOR REAL ANY MORE

Just when I was starting to understand and appreciate the Sopranos, what do they do? They kill off the best looking female on the program and end the season. I don't keep up with this sort of thing so it may be common knowledge that the Sopranos will return or not return next season. I heard they had some salary problems with Tony. I hope they come back for another season, but I'll survive if they don't. I was devastated when I saw on the credits that Tony Soprano has a dialect coach. I understood, I think, when Nicole Kidman had one for her role in Cold Mountain but Tony Soprano? I was sure he was for real because I had heard so many guys talk like him when I was in service. Most of them were from Philadelphia and yes, I know, Tony is from New Jersey. Now I'm getting hooked on Deadwood. I really do lag behind the mainstream on television shows and movies about 2-5 years.

YOU'RE FIRED

Did any of you see where the UNC graduate who was runner up in the "You're Fired" television program with Donald Trump was offered $25,000 to do a commercial for Kentucky Fried Chicken? Looks like it's possible to be a loser and a winner at the same time.

KRISPY KREME CAVES IN

It was bound to happen, so Krispy Kreme finally announced they would introduce a low carb line of products later in the year. The stock took a beating (down approx. 33%) when Wes Livengood announced that profits would be down compared to last year due to the low carb mania that is sweeping the nation. It's similar to the low fat craze that occurred in the early 90s. There is no doubt that the public has become more conscious of what they put into their stomachs and it's not likely they will revert back to careless ways of eating any time soon. I'm doing pretty good with my blood sugar, but I thought you might like to know the two highest sugar content items I have encountered since I started reading the nutrition labels. First was a pint of Marva Maid chocolate milk which I used to regularly drink with my sausage, cheese and egg sandwich at my country store retreat. I was shocked when I read that the pint of chocolate milk has 29 grams of sugar. From now on, it's canned sugar free pink lemonade which I carry in my pocket when I go out for breakfast. Tropicana or Krogers will do.

The real killer though was when I bought a small serving of carrot cake which I usually cut in half if I really want to reward myself for good nutritional behavior, and, of course, for walking. That one piece of carrot cake had 46 grams of sugar in it. I didn't think pure sugar would score that high. Needless to say, Mrs. Ramfanatic discovered it in the kitchen after I had gone out for a drive in the country and that was the end of the carrot cake. She checks every bag I bring back when I return from my day trips.

Ramfanatic note: At the time the above article was written, I was aware that Krispy Kreme was going to consider closing some stores, but I was ill prepared for the fact that the store In Charlottesville would be closed immediately. A friend emailed me the bad news. At one time, Charlottesville had a store ( where doughnuts are made) and, in another location, a commissary where doughnuts are served. It always bugged me that Charlottesville had a Krispy Kreme store and Chapel Hill didn't. I continue to hear rumors that one will open in Chapel Hill but nothing definite yet. You can get KKs at a lot of places now. Even Krogers carries them in their bakery section, but if a person has never tasted a KK that is still hot, they haven't lived. I once got a KK that was so hot I couldn't eat it until it cooled.

I saw a poster up in my favorite country store the other day that said tickets were on sale in the store for Ralph Stanley's appearance up the road a piece in a couple of weeks. How lucky can I be to have the opportunity to attend a concert ( I don't like that word used with country and folk music ) right up the road to see and hear someone who is internationally know, particularly for his role in Oh Brother/Oh Death. We are proud of Ralph Stanley being from Virginia.