Thursday, December 11, 2014

The nerve of some people

It begins the night before Thanksgiving and continues well into January, this season of holiday madness that comes around every year as reliably as free calendars from veterans, disease-fighting charities and just about every charity you can name.  To tell you the truth, I worry about the people who make and sell calendars and return-address labels, because who needs to buy them anymore?  The letter carrier brings them around every day.

Everyone is tense, uptight, nervous as a cat in a room full of rocking chairs.  Take Haloti Ngata (and if you could, you'd be playing in the NFL!), the mountain of a man who, until his recent suspension, has been the Baltimore Ravens' star defensive end.  By the numbers, Ngata (pronounced NAHT-a) wears #92, stands 6'4", weighs 340 pounds, and is 30 years of age, married, with three kids.

A lot of guys wear that same jersey and are married with three kids. The difference is that they probably don't earn $8.5 million per year for picking up opposing runners and quarterbacks and tossing them aside like last week's magazine.  

You may have heard that Ngata is missing the Ravens' final four games this year, due to a suspension from the league for violating drug policy.  He was caught with Adderal in his tinkle.  According to the charmingly named Drugs.Com, Adderall contains a combination of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. Amphetamine and dextroamphetamine are central nervous system stimulants that affect chemicals in the brain and nerves that contribute to hyperactivity and impulse control.

Do you remember that kid in 5th grade who threw ice-cream sandwiches in the cafeteria, hollered the Pledge of Allegiance at the top of his voice during morning announcements, and couldn't pay attention in class for more than 14 seconds?  That's the kid for whom they make Adderall.  It's for the hyperactive among us.

Haloti Ngata is saying that, yes, he took the drug, no question, but is offering a unique rationale:  According to, Ngata is telling the team that "with three small children at home and feeling the grind of the season, he took the drug to be in a better state of mind to help with them around the house and tend to them."   Thanksgiving and family fatigue.  The bugaboos of a man trying to make things work out on just a crummy eight-and-a-half million semolians a year.  

Anyone else out there with three kids trying to hold it together?

And then there was this.  Heather Cho, the head of in-flight service for Korean Air (she's 40 and is the daughter of the airline's chairman, Cho Yang-ho) was flying home on one of her own airplanes last week when a flight attendant had the nerve to serve her some macadamia nuts IN A BAG rather than in a dish. Imagine.  And you have to figure the flight attendant did not know who Ms Cho was at the time of this horrible offense.  I guess it was because of the holiday hysteria that Ms Cho forced the pilot to return from the runway so the service crew aboard could be replaced, causing the flight and others to be delayed and causing this masterpiece of a boss's daughter apology to issue from her: "I am sorry to our customers and the Korean people that I unintentionally caused social uproar and I ask forgiveness from anyone who has been hurt by me. I take responsibility for the incident." 

Sounds like what she should take is a couple of Adderall.  

Everyone calm down! Please.

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