The arrival of Spring indicates two things in the Pacific Northwest. It means that the rain is slightly warmer,
and it means the Easter season is upon us. Easter has some very serious and genuine significance behind it, but this only makes it that much more incongruous to find so much fun and nonsense attached. A rabbit … that lays eggs … colored eggs at that … in the yard?! In the words of Sgt. Hulka:
But FishDuck.com is nothing if not generous – really to a fault.
So the word came down from on high — The Big Fish himself said, “Let there be candy aplenty for Oregon, and their rival schools, as well, this Easter season. Shower them with sweets to make them know the bounty and blessings of Me … The Big Fish! Let My name be known across the land as FISH! THE MAGNANIMOUS.”
And so, verily verily, it was assigned to me, the kindest of your Fish Friends, to decide what candy should be sent to these various schools during this season of largesse.
Arizona State: Arizona State has a huge campus in the heart of one of the wealthiest valleys in the country. Their school sprawls across 1,600 acres (compared to Oregon’s 270), and hosts more than 71,000 under- and post-graduate students (compared to Oregon’s 24,000). ASU is renowned for having the best weather (if you’d like a touch of melanoma in your future) and the prettiest girls.
So one would think that ASU would be a dominant force in collegiate sports. They have all of the advantages, and fewer knife fights per capita, than at, say, U of A. But a look at major college sports over the last 30 or so years yields … not a heck of a lot.
Jake Plummer almost won a Rose Bowl. The Sun Devils made a little run in the NCAA Tournament … oh, wait, that’s right, they didn’t. The truth of the matter is, you can like the Devils for their sun and their girls, but beyond that there is really no there … there. So ASU gets a big chocolate bunny.
Oregon State University: “Take special care with what you do for OSU,” said The Big Fish. ”They haven’t had many good things happen to them since 1844. I want to give them something nice.” This was going to be a challenge.
What can I say about OSU that hasn’t already been written on their own bathroom stalls? What can I say about Corvallis that hasn’t already been covered in The Lifestyles of the Rank and Hopeless?
Then it came to me … Oregon State fans, because there are so few and so little reason for them to be fans at all, tend to stick together. They float false rumors about Oregon, they root harder against Oregon than they do for their own team, and generally live lives of quiet desperation.
So, because they stick together so well, and because I find myself strangely drawn to their bitterly indomitable spirit, I offer them a Happy Easter treat from FishDuck and his international holdings.
University of Washington: The Pac-12 really has a lot of wonderful things going for it. From the soaring mountains that separate Colorado from Utah, to the wild Sonoran Desert to the lovely Southern Willamette Valley, the Pac-12 is – without fear of contradiction – the most beautiful conference in America. Then there are the Huskies.
Under scrutiny as off-season champions, in-season under-achievers (and under arrest in the off-season), UW is the sore thumb on the hand of the Conference of Champions. The conference is a bag of jelly beans. Cherry red, lime green, orange orange, lemon yellow and whatever the white ones are, it’s a tasty bag of treats … except for the black ones.
University of Oregon: “But I save the most savory treat for my Ducks,” said Fish, as he prepared to board his Gulfstream VI. ”They own my heart like no other.” And it came to pass that this was the easiest gift of them all. Sweet, savory and rare, just like our Ducks.
Top photo by flickr.com