I was recently reminded of one of the most amazing moments of my life.
People want me to blog more and oddly - hilarious shit doesn't happen to me weekly so at times I must tell of a time past.
I was living in Phoenix at the time and my mother and I were traveling via aeroplane back to Chicago. I call my mother "ma" cause I am from Chicago and I have always called her a quick form of mom. Because of my accent, mom sounds like mam and I am lazy and leave off the last m and it becomes "ma". Real hard on that a in "ma". I remember hollering to her once "MA" and she flipped her lid, demanding I call her mother or mommy or mom. "alright ma" I said. Not everyone from Chicago does this. I do. Sue me. I can't help the way I talk.
She is my 'ma' - that is the end of it. (fun side story - unrelated)
We land at MSP. It is late at night - probably too late for a flight to ORD, but still we must know what to do. We are all unloaded - hanging out at the airport.
My ma goes to the bathroom at some point. I get up - I am listening to some tunes on my sweet yellow Sony walkman- y'all owned one.
You know how when you are in a car accident or something the same - suddenly everything is in slow motion and you go deaf? Your brain takes in every visual millisecond - recording every tiny moment of the event and lets your remember it scene for scene?
That is what happened. I said I was sorry, looked up at this large man that I clumsily walked into - bounced off of him...and the second I recognized him as Mike Ditka - there was no sound - except for his words - slo-mo. He said "its okay" and put each of his hands on my shoulders and physically removed me from his path of travel. I stumbled a bit - in slow motion - and looked, turned around in amazement. Then everything returned to normal.
I went into the bathroom where my ma was and I said " Ma!!! I think Mike Ditka is on our plane" and some lady from another stall yelled out "Are you on the flight from Phoenix to Chicago? He is - I was sitting next me - it is great!"
I like to refer to this as the time I was manhandled by Mike Ditka. Because he did in fact manhandle me.
When I reported this story to my friends in Phoenix - my friend, Ted, asked - Did they put the shirt you were wearing in a museum in your town? My favorite comment ever about this event. That shirt should be in a museum. Ditka worship is totally normal in Chicago.