Football is srs bsns

Tuesday is not my night for television. The only thing I am even remotely interested in is “NCIS,” but I’m a fair-weather fan. If I miss an episode it’s no big deal. Which is why Tuesday evenings are usually when I either play stupid games on Facebook for three hours online or watch Doctor Who for the upteenth time stuff on DVD.

Gibbs is not amused

Last night, however, I decided to have some family time with Mom and Dad and watch “NCIS.” Or, at least, that was the plan.

About twenty minutes into the show, the local CBS affiliate interrupted with earth-shattering news.

Lane Kiffin was leaving the University of Tennessee after only one season.

That’s right. The thousands dead in the earthquake in Haiti didn’t warrant a program interruption, but the sudden and unexpected decision of the Vols’ football coach to cut and run was important, breaking news.

The first interruption was brief, and “NCIS” returned to the air in short order. However, that should have clued us in that watching anything on the Knoxville networks that evening was shot. Just in case anyone in Vol country hadn’t heard the news (and I guarantee you, everyone did within 15 minutes), the Knoxville CBS and ABC affiliates interrupted programing every 20 minutes to let us know of the horror breaking out on the UT campus. (We do not watch anything on the NBC affiliate, but I’m sure they’re just as guilty.)

Shortly after 9 p.m. CST, the ABC affiliate gave up any pretense of trying to air prime time programming and decided to report on this shocking turn of events for 55 minutes, returning to “The Forgotten” (already in progress) three minutes before it ended.

Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot.

Today, while the rest of the country watches the devastating images from Port-au-Prince, here in East Tennessee, more people are worried about who is going to replace “Lame” Kiffin and what will this do to the 2010 recruiting season (both of which are the front page news stories on www.tennessean.com as of this posting).

I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. After all, this is the same town who, after Sept. 11, was more worried about whether or not the Vols would play that following weekend.

Football in Tennessee is serious business.

***

For those more interested in helping the people of Haiti, please visit www.redcross.org (or any other reputable charity) and donate what you can. From the Red Cross site, you can make a donation through your existing Amazon account, if you do not have a credit card handy.

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