Don't sing it, bring it
By Chad T. Jones
Public Affairs Officer
I'm picking up my in-laws from the airport in about six hours and chugging day-old coffee like a disgruntled police detective who is waking up ornery after a night of chasing clues and downing whiskey from a flask.
Not to mention that all the world of sports has provided me, since Wimbledon, is a blowout at the All-Star Game, Dwight Howard trade rumors, extra time to contemplate my failings as a fantasy baseball owner, and the ESPY awards.
So how do you think I'm doing?
Actually, I'm doing pretty good. I love my in-laws, and their arrival usually means I can look forward to some good eats from Mom and a weekend of Dad buying everything.
Plus, the Wimbledon finals were outstanding, Prince Fielder won the Home Run Derby (the best All-Star Game activity in all of sports), and my fantasy woes are correctable now that I've got my pitching staff back in order.
In fact, the only thing I'm worried about is getting this column done before our Command Information Chief Philip Jones starts getting on my back about missing deadline.
I made the mistake of telling Phil I might not have a column this week because of a few other things that were going on. You can check out Wednesday morning's Facebook posts to figure out what it was.
His response: I can write something for you.
Now you might be surprised how often I hear that, like coming up with a column is as easy as pulling a rabbit out of a hat or making fun of the ESPYs. My former boss would threaten to "take my column for a week" so the masses could have something good to read once in a while.
However, it's not just superiors or editors who express their desire to write Jibber for a day. During last week's Fourth of July festivities, at least three people said they'd like to write my column just once so everyone could read what is really going on in sports.
Similar claims have come to me while shopping at the local Food Lion when the clerk thought I should write about women's basketball. One person interrupted me while I was dropping my son off at CDC III to tell me I should write more about the Cowboys.
And of course, our friend from the museum, Bob Johnson, seems to have a column idea every other week that he'd be happy to write.
Normally when I'd hear this disrespect to my skills, I'd get offended or laugh it off with a dismissive, "Yeah, right. You might write something, but it won't be Jibber."
But even thick-skinned individuals like myself who live a life without ego can reach a breaking point where they feel compelled to take a stand.
Well, Phil's comment this morning was that breaking point. I've had all the disrespect I can stand, and I can stand no more, so let me break it down Scott Hall-style. (You wrestling fans may also know him as Razor Ramon or from the NWO.) http://bit.ly/Ho6TAF
To all you wanna-be columnists who think you can do what I do: Don't sing it, bring it. Don't tell me what you can write, write it. And since I've got some vacation time coming up in August, we might even run it in the paper -- photo and all.
So, Phil, or that lady at the checkout line, or the dude at the CDC III, or Bob, or any off you Jabronies who have something you need to get off your chest in regard to sports, write it up in between 400 to 700 words and send it in to me.
You can talk about something national like the upcoming NFL season. You can keep it to the Fort Meade sports scene. Or you can even enlighten us with why Tiddlywinks is more of a sport than soccer. It can be serious, or funny.
The key is, if it makes the cut and deemed Jibber worthy, we just may run it in the Aug. 23, Aug. 30 or Sept. 6 editions of Soundoff! We also may post some additional columns on the Fort Meade Live Blog page.
You can send your submissions starting Friday and keep them coming through Sept. 1. All content will be edited for propriety and Associated Press and Fort Meade style guidelines.
So here is your chance to let out your inner Jones or, hopefully, inner Grantland Rice and show the community you are more than just "a lot of talk and a badge," as Bobby De Niro put it in "The Untouchables."
If you need any ideas, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
BTW, it is 10:30 a.m., which means I wrote nearly 800 words in one hour and 15 minutes. That's why I'm too sweeeeeeet!
If you have any comments on this or anything to do with sports, contact me at email@example.com.
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Col. Thomas S. Rickard
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