Monday, September 13, 2010

You moosed remember this

There's news out of Alaska today about a 5-year-old boy who won a moose-calling contest.

So what's his secret for winning a moose calling contest?

His mom says he just likes making a lot of noise, and, she says, "He's good at it."

Not that I'd ever want to push a kid to major-league competition too soon, but I know a certain Baby Moose who's also very good at making noise. With a little training and focus I think he'd be great. In fact, he might even be a natural given that I myself once won a moose call contest.

It was almost 30 years ago, but I remember it as if it were yesterday. I'd finished an evening of athletic excellence and my team and I were celebrating in the Williams' Peanut Bar in Uptown. It happened to be "Moosehead Night" and a couple of reps from the brewery were there. My teammates entered me in the moose-call contest, a fact I discovered when I came out of the men's room. There was an emcee with a bullhorn and half a dozen competitors lined up in front of me. Everyone delivered as authentic a moose call as they could, but the most impressive was the tiny, 5-foot-nothin' blonde right in front of me. She threw everything she had into a deep, bone-rattling, "rawwWHOOF! Houf! Houf!" I thought it was awesome. Then they handed me the bull-horn.

"Hee-ee-ere Moose-Moose-Moose! Heee-ee-ere Moose!"

I won by acclamation via the audience applause-o-meter, though the blonde was very upset at the injustice. I think she'd had quite a bit of the featured product already that evening, and was not a gracious loser. I was willing to turn over all my winnings - a Moosehead logoed painter's cap and a styrofoam six-pack cooler - but she was having none of it, nor would she give me her phone number.

I must make a note to teach the Baby Moose that not everyone will be blessed with natural ability, but everyone can certainly learn how to be gracious in victory and defeat!

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