When your son spikes a fever opening day of his first-ever Tournament and both of you get to stay home and watch hoops


Everyone thinks their first kid is smart and I’m no exception. But today, I think he may be a genius.

By Andrew Pridgen

I figure eventually the truth is revealed. Either you have another, smarter kid and go, “Oh” or you get them to the Thunderdome that is kindergarten and say, yep—just average—hopefully. But at least he gets his stuff in the right cubby most days.

But there are those glorious first months where that kid is the smartest on the planet. It’s kind of how I felt my yellow 1983 Volvo DL Wagon was the zippiest Twinkie on wheels when I was 17, but later realiz–actually, bad example, that was a great car.

Back to the kid for a minute: Today’s my son’s first March Madness. He and I are pretty similar in that we’d both rather drool over books or see what his mama’s up to in the garden than watch regular season college hoops.

But there’s something about the opening round. Something about waking up on the West Coast and knowing there’s 12 straight hours of watching exploited 19-year-old centers who have to drive Uber in order to afford Pop Tarts and iTunes downloads ahead. That’s special.

Today, he woke up with about a 100-degree temperature, a face caked in ectoplasm and the kind of expression that said, “No way I’m going to work daycare today…and neither are you—so let’s start defrosting those corn dogs.”

And so, at home we stayed.

He’s been there with me for both the 14-3 upsets and even helped coin the term “14-3 is the new 12-5” (mostly because I was going to text it to @kylemagin and he posted it on my Facebook feed with his drooly index finger when I went to go prep a bottle).

He was pleasantly surprised at the goaltending call for UCLA, though like me speculated SMU may still be facing backlash because Eric Dickerson has yet to admit where he got the Trans-Am.

He even staved off the temptation to turn MacGruber on VH1 during the Xavier/Ole Miss game…and instead of suffering through that made-for-NIT match-up, threw up his hands and said, “What, does Xavier just get an automatic bid every year—I know nothing about these guys!!” and decided to go down for a nap.

Good call bro.

Rest up for the night games.

I know he may not grow up to be the smartest kid stealing coke bottle gummies from the candy bin, but with this move I gotta think chances are he’ll end up OK.

He’s already asked about this sideline gal Rachel Nichols and why is she dressed like Stevie Nicks post-Tango in the Night and I’m like, “Trust me bro, back in the day…” and when I looked down he’s not even paying attention anymore, just staring at my bracket wondering what I was thinking with Baylor in the Final Four.

Told you. Smart kid.