Friday, March 19, 2010

March Madness Bumps Clay Aiken

Georgia Tech wins with free throws.
AP Photo/Jeffrey Phelps

Cluben Tour Adds Dates

NCAA, NIT Clear Clay Calendar

Despite the fact that my team, the Carolina Tar Heels, defending national collegiate basketball champions, didn't make the 2010 NCAA Tournament, March Madness has once again taken over my life and temporarily bumped Clay Aiken from my computer.

The Heels will meet Mississippi State in the second round of the National Invitational Tournament at noon Saturday; and you can bet I'll be in front of my TV waving Carolina blue and white pom-poms as soon as my oboe and I arrive home from a cantata rehearsal. [UPDATE: Heels won!]

Clay Aiken previewed "Tried and True" CD tracks at 3/12 concert.
Click to enlarge graphic by LovesClaysVoice/AP photo by Jim R. Bounds

I usually keep up with the latest Clay news, but this week March Madness has consumed my TV and computer time. Friday morning I swung by several message boards to check the status of the Cluben Tour Ticketmaster Tango for Reno, NV.

Although some fans scored good seating through Ticketmaster, many seemed to get better results by phoning the Silver Legacy Hotel directly (1-800-687-8733). Here's the promo appearing on the Silver Legacy -- and other Cluben Tour -- sites:

American Idol stars Clay Aiken and Ruben Studdard join together for a night of POP and R&B hits at Silver Legacy.

Since appearing together on the second season of American Idol Aiken has gone on to release five albums, his debut album went multi platinum and perform on Broadway. Studdard has received a Grammy award nomination and released four albums.

Confirmed Cluben Tour dates, also tagged the "Clay Aiken-Ruben Studdard Summer Not a Tour," include:
  • July 23, 8 p.m. EDT: Biltmore Estates, Asheville, NC. Tickets go on sale April 6 at 8 a.m. EST.

Wall-to-Wall Basketball Prevails

Except for teaching violin lessons, I was front and center for all of Thursday's first round NCAA games right up until New Mexico, the third seed, squeaked out a win over #14 Montana in the wee hours. In fact, most of the night I watched two games at once, one on TV and one on my laptop.

Now that was really a sight to see, especially during the Wake Forest-Texas and Tennessee-San Diego State games. A former Texan and Tennessean, I generally cheer for the teams from my previous "home" states. Thursday, however, I supported Wake Forest and the Atlantic Coast Conference.

Coincidentally, both Texas and Tennessee have the same school colors, orange and white. As the higher rated team in their games, the Longhorns and the Volunteers wore their lighter, predominantly white, uniforms.

TV Updates Tease Psyche

Wake, my TV team, was in the darker jersey while, on my computer, Tennessee was in white. As the night wore on, keeping up with the team colors became complicated and even comical.

The games were very close; and during the final minutes, CBS continually switched back and forth between the two, usually with no warning. I was already mentally shuffling opposite team colors from TV to laptop, only to find myself temporarily viewing the same game in both places.

All host basketball courts have been prepared to look the same with the center NCAA insignia and blue borders, so that didn't help either.

The Vols won, 62-59; and Wake prevailed in overtime, 81-80, with a buzzer-beating final shot that had "replay" written all over it -- the same type of shot that took out Vanderbilt from my old Nashville stomping grounds. Video highlights of these and other stunners are available on the ESPN web site.

Now it's Friday night, and I have cheered Georgia Tech, an ACC team, to victory while watching on my laptop. During the final seven minutes, I provided my friend Terri a play-by-play report before wrapping up this blog.

1957 Triple Overtime Spurs Tactic

A classical violinist and lifelong Tar Heel fan, Terri and I share a love for college basketball. When Carolina is playing, she dons the sweatshirt she wore when the team won the NCAA crown in 2005.

My own secret weapon dates back to my childhood when it took three overtimes for the Tar Heels to defeat Kansas in 1957. Between each extra period, I slipped into my bedroom and prayed for victory while holding my Bible. Eventually, Carolina prevailed.

Years later I told Terri about the Carolina-Kansas strategy. When the Carolina team gets into hot water, she often calls and urges me to "go get the Bible."

Since the Heels are not in the NCAA this year, we are transferring our winning tactics to other teams. During Friday's first game, we joined Mountaineer fans in cheering West Virginia on to the next round.

I taught piano and violin students all afternoon while Terri waved poms for both of us. To the teams we "adopt," we are prepared to bring out our secret weapons -- the Carolina sweatshirt and special Bible.

As sports analysts bestow their audiences with hours of statistics and predictions, little do they know that two retired orchestra teachers really hold the possible keys to a game's outcome.

Have a wonderfully "mad" weekend, Clay Nation!



MissSally said...

Beautiful banner!

Don't know a thing about basketball, so... "Go Caro's Team!!!" LOL

LovesClaysVoice said...

I love basketball! Sorry Caro, but I am rooting for Illinois in the NIT! I can't believe both UNC and Illinois did not make the NCAA tournament! It's a travesty! LOL

Looking forward to hearing about more concert days for Clay and Ruben! Praying for something in the midwest!!

Thanks for including my graphic!

Anonymous said...

Hi Caro,
You do so much for us with your Clay blogs, we can let you slide this one time. lol
I am not much into basketball but my husband and boys take over our 4 TVs to watch all the on going games. So I stick to my laptop.

I am one of the lucky fans to get good seats at Cluben concert in Reno. This will be my first Clay concert. I can't wait.
Hope you team does will.

ImGranny said...

I know ZERO about basketball, but since you provide us with such gret blogs, I'll wish your team the best! As long as the Clay Aiken bump is just temporary, that's OK! LOL

Sandy said...

I like what Sally said "Go Caro's Team"...that was priceless! After reading your blog, I pretty well have to agree with her! I think you are on of the Heel's biggest fans! It sure must have been a big disappointment for you this year for them not to have made the NCAA tournament!

So far Anita and I are looking at going to the Chautauqua concert! It's about a seven hour drive and we do hope something closer comes up but if not then this will be the one. As much as I love NYC, my lungs are progressively getting worse and I just can't do that much walking anymore. Big cities are definitely out for me now!

We just got in from babysitting Alyssa. She sure is getting big and love that her hair is now growing and is going to be very curly as both parent's have curly hair. She stood on her own for about 20 seconds tonight so walking is not that far off.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!


Anonymous said...

Basketball what is that?? Yuk, but happy U got time for the blog because we do depend on U...;) THANKS!! Donna in Wi.

CCOL4HIM said...

The Men's and Women's Chattanooga Mocs usually make it to the National round once every few years, but usually don't last past the first or second game. Great blog. I wanted to go to see Clay in Raleigh, but I couldn't and it turned out to be the best since my brother got sick that week,\. Take care and God bless. Love always, Cynthia

Anonymous said...

Hi Caro,

I'm with Sally....."Go Caro's Team!!!"

Thank You for keeping us informed about the concert dates.....I can't wait to hear that voice again. Yeah!!!

Have a great week.....


dietofworms said...

wow. i just randomly came across this website and let me say - it is scary.... SCARY AWESOME THAT I"VE FOUND SOMEONE WHO LOVES CLAY AS MUCH AS ME!!!! well, maybe a little less LOL!!!