Roy Exum: No, I’m Not Average

Wednesday, October 24, 2018 - by Roy Exum
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

When Bear Bryant was the football coach at Alabama, he had a most delicious way of keeping his players on an even keel. If a player got a bit full of himself, Coach would set it up with one of his writer friends like this: “When everybody gets to where they ask questions, I want you to ask about (insert name) and how he is playing this year, alright?”

It would always turn out that among the players who accompanied Coach Bryant to his weekly press was Bryant’s “goat” of the day and when, as directed, Coach would be asked about this particular player his response would be to barely shake his head before Bryant would respond, “He’s ordinary … I was hoping for more, but so far the boy is just average…”

Because the writer was in on the barb, you could obviously not take your eye off the hapless kid and the reaction was awful. Man, nobody wanted to be called “average” by Coach, and being called “ordinary” in a crowd of over-achievers made more than several think of quitting. Of course, later that afternoon “Mr. Average” would have the most determined day of practice ever.

“You know I didn’t mean it when I called you average,” Coach would whisper to the miscreant in the next day or two but by then the boy would have already cleansed his soul, continued to practice like all get out, and come “election day,” (the next game) you mighty right the player “would cast a vote!”

I think about being “average” or “ordinary” and it was 20 times more effective than any curse word could ever be. Another single-word epitaph Bryant used but was rarely heard because his office door would be shut. He liked to remind a player in trouble that the kid was “common,” and if he was really ticked he would add, “Yard-dog common, you hear me!”

The only reason I bring this up is because yesterday was a rattle for me and as I was trying to crawl out of “writer’s block” with time ticking fast, I found a list of things somebody decided every boy should know. On the list you’ll see that people who write on a keyboard – with the proper technique – an average person will use their left hand 51 percent of the time.

Since my right arm is more of less “ornamental,” I type with my left hand 100 percent of the time, which gives further credence I ain’t “average.”

Here’s a list of bonafide wisdom a reader just shared with me:

SO YOU THINK YOU KNOW EVERYTHING … HOW ABOUT THESE?

A dime has 118 ridges around the edge.

A cat has 32 muscles in each ear.

A crocodile cannot stick out its tongue.

A dragonfly has a life span of 24 hours.

A goldfish has a memory span of three seconds.

A "jiffy" is an actual unit of time for 1/100th of a second.

A shark is the only fish that can blink with both eyes.

A snail can sleep for three years.

Al Capone's business card said he was a used furniture dealer.

All 50 states are listed across the top of the Lincoln Memorial on the back of the $5 bill.

Almonds are a member of the peach family.

An ostrich's eye is bigger than its brain.

Babies are born without kneecaps. They don't appear until the child reaches 2 to 6 years of age.

Butterflies taste with their feet.

Cats have over one hundred vocal sounds. Dogs only have about 10.

"Dreamt" is the only English word that ends in the letters "mt".

February 1865 was the only month in recorded history not to have a full moon until February 2018.

In the last 4,000 years, no new animals have been domesticated.

If the population of China walked past you, in single file, the line would never end because of the rate of reproduction.

If you are an average American, in your whole life, you will spend an average of 6 months waiting at red lights.

It's impossible to sneeze with your eyes open.

Leonardo Da Vinci invented the scissors.

Maine is the only state whose name is just one syllable.

No word in the English language rhymes with month, orange, silver, or purple.

Our eyes are always the same size from birth, but our nose and ears never stop growing.

Peanuts are one of the ingredients of dynamite.

Rubber bands last longer when refrigerated.

"Stewardesses" is the longest word typed with only the left hand and "lollipop" with your right.

The average person's left hand does 56% of the typing.

The cruise liner, QE2, moves only six inches for each gallon of diesel that it burns.

The microwave was invented after a researcher walked by a radar tube and a chocolate bar melted in his pocket.

The sentence:  "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog" uses every letter of the alphabet.

The winter of 1932 was so cold that Niagara Falls froze completely solid.

The words 'racecar,' 'kayak' and 'level' are the same whether they are read left to right or right to left (palindromes).

There are 293 ways to make change for a dollar.

There are more chickens than people in the world.

There are only four words in the English language which end in "dous": tremendous, horrendous, stupendous, and hazardous .

There are two words in the English language that have all five vowels in order: "abstemious" and "facetious."

There's no Betty Rubble in the Flintstones Chewable Vitamins.

Tigers have striped skin, not just striped fur.

TYPEWRITER is the longest word that can be made using the letters only on one row of the keyboard.

Winston Churchill was born in a ladies' room during a dance.

Women blink nearly twice as much as men.

Your stomach has to produce a new layer of mucus every two weeks; otherwise it will digest itself.

* * *

There, now you know just about everything which lends testimony you aren’t average, either!

royexum@aol.com


Roy Exum: ‘Pete, Never Forget’

Chuck Fleischmann Thanks The Voters

Where Has My Country Gone? - And Response (2)


Sometimes I don’t tend to myself quite like I should. Think of it as a bad habit. So last week I took some time away from the computer, away from my morning readings and newspapers and TV, so ... (click for more)

In our election, we ran a great campaign in all 11 counties. Working with citizens across the 3rd District guaranteed victory on Tuesday night. I am beyond excited to have received the vote ... (click for more)

Where oh where has my country gone is the beginning few words of a child's nursery rhyme. The issue is that what is our leadership, the president, is no longer a fairy tale but reality. The ... (click for more)


Opinion

Roy Exum: ‘Pete, Never Forget’

Sometimes I don’t tend to myself quite like I should. Think of it as a bad habit. So last week I took some time away from the computer, away from my morning readings and newspapers and TV, so I could tap my reset button. Things happen when you get old and some of them aren’t good. Thank goodness there is hardly anything today that has no solution if you keep trying and stay in the ... (click for more)

Chuck Fleischmann Thanks The Voters

In our election, we ran a great campaign in all 11 counties. Working with citizens across the 3rd District guaranteed victory on Tuesday night. I am beyond excited to have received the vote of confidence from 80 percent of our primary voters and 64 percent of the general electorate across this great district. I have always viewed this seat, and the opportunity to serve the ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Man Shot And Killed Monday Morning By Police Identified As Cesar Alehandro Ramos, 25

A man was shot and killed on Monday morning by Chattanooga Police officers after they responded to a shots fired call at 6:13 a.m. in the 5000 block of 15th Avenue. He has been identified as Cesar Alehandro Ramos, 25. A reporting party said the suspect was walking in the street, displaying a firearm, and firing shots at houses. Upon arrival, officers encountered ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain Dealing With Goats, Coyotes As Development Continues

Two animal issues dominated the Signal Mountain Town Council’s November meeting Monday night. There was much discussion about an ordinance that would allow residents in the city limits to keep and raise goats and the concern of citizens about the increasing coyote population. In October, an amendment to the town’s livestock ordinance that would allow property owners with two ... (click for more)

Sports

Lady Vols' Davis, Westbrook On Women's Naismith Trophy Watch List

The Atlanta Tipoff Club has released the 50 names on the 2019 Women's Citizen Naismith Trophy Watch List, and UT sophomores Rennia Davis and Evina Westbrook are among the candidates. The midseason 30 team will be announced on Feb. 11, 2019, and then the competition will be narrowed down to 10 national semifinalists on March 4, 2019. The four finalists will be named on March ... (click for more)

Pruitt Looks For Vols To Maintain Momentum

The Tennessee football team returned to the practice at Haslam Field Monday, coming off of its second win over a ranked opponent this season. Head coach Jeremy Pruitt, who became the first Tennessee head coach to defeat two ranked teams in his first season since Phillip Fulmer in 1993, reflected on the win over Kentucky and looked ahead to Saturday's home finale against Missouri ... (click for more)