Monday, April 14, 2014

chasing terry bradshaw

My dad was a Steelers fan.  I don't know why he chose to pull for a Pennsylvania based football team but because my dad was a fan, so were his sons.  When I was a kid the Steelers were awesome.  They had the Iron Curtain defense, Mean Joe Greene, Franco Harris, Lynn Swann and Terry Bradshaw.  Terry Bradshaw was one of my heroes.

This is a Christmas party photo from the 1980s.  That's me on the left and my cousin Jeff on the right, both in our Terry Bradshaw #12 jerseys.  

Since those days, Terry Bradshaw has retired from football and had a pretty good career in sports broadcasting.  I think he still works for Fox Sports.  You may also remember him baring his buttocks in the movie "Failure To Launch".  Well, it seems he also travels around doing some public speaking gigs.  

Last Saturday night he was in Spartanburg as the featured speaker for the Spartanburg Regional Hospital System's Society of 1921.  This is a group of folks who donate money to the hospital foundation.  Each year there's a celebrity guest speaker at the big shindig as a reward for the donors.  When G was offered someone's tickets she knew that I'd be willing to suit up to see Mr. Bradshaw.

So I dug the plain black suit out of storage for the second time in four years.  G got herself all fancied up too.  

After some free food and drinks we sat down and my childhood hero came up on stage.  He was a pretty good speaker.  He was funny and charming and his speech actually made several good points.  Two things he said stuck out in my mind:  always smile and make sure you use your God given talents.  You can't go wrong with that kind of advice.  

On the down side, I was told that in the past the celebrities would mingle and there was a good chance I'd get to meet him.  About 7 years ago I stood in line in a tropical storm to meet Mean Joe Greene.  I really wanted to meet Terry Bradshaw.  

 But alas, that 65 year old quarterback is still faster than me.  When he was finished speaking he hit the door and kept moving.  I flew to the door in hot pursuit but he was nowhere to be found.  I had to settle for a photo opp with his cardboard cut out.

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