Caster here. I attended the 2013 San Diego Chargers “Shoot to Cure Huntington’s Disease” with BP this past weekend.
Attending this event allowed me learn more about this disease [and its sad effect on one’s mental and motor control] and to participate in an open auction, with proceeds benefiting Huntington’s Disease Society of America.
The auction item catching my interest was a Chargers Preseason practice session, followed by a dinner (for winner & 5 guests) with… Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates. No big deal? Couple of All-Pro’s. Couple of future Hall of Famers. Couple of stand-up fellows, from what I’ve read. An evening of dining and socializing with these two seems… more than run-of-the-mill.
What would YOU donate for this opportunity? Well, the auction started at $500. I got involved around $1,000. BP and Body noticed me drift off and involve myself in the action. And as you’d imagine, things started getting exciting. As the dollar value increased, and I stayed in the fold, BP and Body saw MY excitement. It was hardly concealed. I don’t play poker. My excitement fed their excitement, which, strangely enough… looped right back to me. Just building. I was having trouble putting a dollar value on this thing. And those two, coaxing and carrying on, weren’t making it easier to stay rational. Nor were the 5 cans of PBR. How do I assign value to a once-in-a-lifetime experience AND a worthwhile cause? My strategy, as it turned out, was not overly scientific… it was “bid more than that person in front.” Well, when the hand wringing and hand raising and feverish provoking was finished, I’d won.
Next, there was a bunch of jumping and hugging. What would YOU have done? I thought so. So we were jumping and hugging, and a local Fox Sports and U-T TV reporter, Annie Heilbrunn, puts a microphone in my face, congratulates me, and asks what I planned to talk about with Philip Rivers. Here’s where the story takes an embarrassing turn. Before the auction, the gentlemen of local AM1360 [he’s talking about Costa, clearly using the term ‘gentleman’ loosely – bp] announced that “Phillip Rivers, being a dog-lover, and particularly spaniels, communicated with me that if the winner has a breed of spaniel, that he [Philip Rivers] would personally express the anal glands of your dog. I’m not joking.” Well, that [somewhat] gross idea stuck.
Regardless of the intent of the “anal gland” broadcast comment… when Annie’s microphone was in range, my response was (naturally)… “First thing I’m doing… is getting a spaniel!” And I don’t remember the rest. Excitement blindness. Over-stimulation. The rush of possibility. And all that hugging. BP jumping around like a 7-year-old girl on Christmas who’d just received a Barbie Dream House. But seriously… THAT is what I settled on? I’m getting a spaniel? Keepin’ it classy. A comment that won’t make it past the editor’s first cut. [He was right, it didn't. Here's Annie's video of Caster winning -bp]
I tried to calm myself down by thinking, “Ok, it’s just dinner,” but I couldn’t shake the words of Willy Wonka describing his three-course-dinner gum to Violet Beauregarde. Just dinner? “Wrong! It’s the most amazing, fabulous, sensational [dinner] in the whole world.” No pressure.
I’ve found myself day-dreaming about this dinner date event… for a few hours each day. Wondering about the conversation. Wondering about the venue. Just wondering. These guys are animals on the gridiron. Have you ever seen Rivers hollering at enormous superhuman D-linemen? Fearless. And Antonio Gates, from a virtual unknown to creating a new standard for NFL tight-ends? My accomplishments are… rather pedestrian in contrast. Gotta stay cool. Try not to stare at ‘em as if I’m falling in love. I plan to prepare by watching “He’s Just Not that Into You,” to help ground me. I just gotta be myself. Don’t over-think things. And again… stay calm. IT’S GUNNA BE THE BEST FIRST DATE EVER!!
Get ready for some new best friends, Phillip and Antonio.