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The only stupid question is the one that is never asked, except maybe "Don't you think it is about time you audited my return?" or "Isn't it morally wrong to give me a warning when, in fact, I was speeding?"
-- Age 15
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LMS XVII: Week 6 - Death in the afternoon

Posted: 2010-10-14

It was a most delicious October surprise THE ZOOKEEPER was savoring after WEEK FIVE. He was kicking back in THE VAN, slamming down some Muscatel with Luis Urzua, Greg Nosal, Deanna Favre, and Bristol Palin (hey, you never know who might show up DOWN BY THE RIVER - and sooner or later, like a tourist standing on Times Square or a Frenchman attending a strike rally, everybody comes to the great man for whatever it is that drives the desperation for glory in us all), when the talk turned ...

... from the consequences of Yuan valuation to the subject of honor and the weekly heroic struggles of those who battle to stay in their cages.

Luis, understandably, was waxing on about the travails of life in that black diamond hole he had just escaped (as he uncaringly hoarded the chip and cheese dip bowl from the others), while four fingered Greg kept wagging his bandaged mitt in the air to punctuate his points on team sacrifice over individual needs. Bristol was admiring Deanna's stoic refusal to get drawn into this or any other mess, while struggling mightily with her own urge to grab that bowl from Luis. They were all feasting late into the night on THE ZOOKEEPER'S Muscatel dime, and he was serving it up in rare elegant fashion. In an unusual departure from his straight up style, he was pouring the grape iced in champagne flutes charged with a jigger of absinthe (a drink he once invented on a late night bender with Ernest Hemingway). Yes, he was in a most celebratory role following WEEK FIVE's late game cage cleaners.

THE ZOOKEEPER left his weekly guests with this thought (as he stumbled into the darkness of the moonless night off the back porch and into the bushes): There is honor among pickpockets and honor among whores, as with all the animals. It is simply that the standards differ.

By the numbers, 40% of the cages were cleaned into an honorable second place status in late Sunday action, leaving the still caged ones at a total of 1/3 of the original pilgrims who began this journey on their quest for FOOTBALL GENIUS recognition.

Twelve weeks remain, animals. There is no dishonor (just different standards) should you decide that this journey is not for you as did OPUSBOB and RIKEEFE, our latest DQ'D animals. Like the struggles of those Chilean miners, the resolve of that rare football gladiator, stoic Deanna and hard dancing Bristol's determined dance to the stars, this journey is not for the faint of heart. The mid-year doldrums seemingly lie ahead, but a sudden storm may find you. Seek the shelter of your cages as you courageously fight to survive. The rest of you can go rake leaves.

Here are this week's numbers:

4573 OUT, 10 DQ'D, 2222 IN. 1529 MIGHTY MIGHTY STEELERS, 469 NEW YORK FOOTBALL GIANTS, 78 LIGHTNING BOLTS, 76 BEARS (oh my), 35 49ERS, 13 TEXANS, 8 J-E-T-S JETS JETS JETS, 6 SAINTS, 3 TITANS, and five lone wolves looking to grab it all: 1 PATRIOT, 1 NATIVE AMERICAN, 1 PACKER (from the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field), 1 FALCON, 1 COLT

PICK OF THE WEEK HONORS gets distributed to the five lone wolves refusing to go with the easy chalk of Steelers or Giants (90% of remaining animals!): GRAZI taking the 3 point road dog Falcons, SOUTH BEACH TALENTS riding the 3 point road favorite Colts, GEE TWO taking a heavy 6 1/2 point favorite home Packers team, UNCLE WALTER with the 3 point home favorite Patriots, and MR B with the 3 point home dog Redskins. Good luck to all.

That's it for this week. The OUTS are eliminated from this week's picks attachment to save file space, but SPONSORS should continue to keep them in their weekly sending. The DQ's will remain as the majority of animals take great delight in the misfortunes of others. Such is their nature. They ask and they tell. GEO 3 was finally knocked off his hill after 38 consecutive with the Bengals in WEEK FIVE. Congratulations, GEO. It was a heck of a run. The Irish play host to the always tough Western Michigan Broncos, who will be looking for revenge, still smarting from the 42-0 shellacking they took from the Gipper led squad of 1920. Peace. Out.

ZK