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Read the thoughts and musings of a cultured redneck here


Week 12 / Game 7

This week was another routine week with the exception that we went to a museum.  Mario says I'm not educated enough in history so yes we went to the Military Museum of Sweden.  The whole time Mario was explaining things to me as well as reading every single sign that could possibly be read in the museum and he even got the few that weren't in English translated.  All I know is that there was an abundance of guns in there and we got to handle some of them so in other words Mr. J.E. would have been in heaven.  After 2 hours of touring the museum Mario felt better educated and I felt like I paid money just to get my back tight and calves sore, but I guess that's why they say 2 people can look at the same thing and see it differently.  The one thing that worries me is that Mario found out that there is a medieval museum as well as a museum where they recovered a sunken ship.  I may get in on one more tour, but that will be my limit though.  Spending money to be educated...come on.

This past week we still worked out and ran in the mornings and there seemed to be an abundance of attractive females out while we were running and biking on the trails.  The first few days of the week were dedicated to recovering from the previous week's beating.  Mario, Coach Wikstrom, one of our lineman ( we call him E-man ) and his girlfriend and I ate barbeque ribs and chicken at Coach Armstrong's house and we did go home on a full belly.  Coach Armstrong is from Jersey and so his grilling skills aren't as good as we are used to in the south, but they were good enough to get by.  We also received a package in the mail that gave us some mid-week momentum.  We broke bad and went shopping a little bit too.  We also watched Top Gun with Chief Swift Cankle Rauge so he would have some 80's American movie knowledge.   We also went over to Coach Wikstrom's house to watch film.  Mario and Pearl had an NCAA 2005 tournament and I think its tied as of right now.

We also did something that we don't normally do at home.  We have been saving up our cans and so we recycled "Cans for Crowns" and made a pretty good tradeoff if you ask me.  I also talked to Neil this week on IM and they had installed web cams in the labs so it was good to be able to see him.  I  designed a web page for Ken Belk with new software so that ate up my time a lot this week.  I had to learn it and do it so you know that goes. Feel free to check it out at www.pineneedleexpress.com

In the previous game I won MVP and they give out like small prizes ( just as they did in Finland ) and I won a double Cd titled "Power Summer Party Hits 2004 ".  It has a bunch of Euro songs on there mixed in with American songs and if any of you download music you should download any songs by a group named " Gunther & The Sunshine Girls" because it will be absolutely hilarious.  The one song on this Cd is " Teeny Weeny String Bikini " and the song doesn't do the video justice at all.  I may have to try to record it.

It has also been unique to watch the Olympics from another country.  The coverage we see has featured Swedish athletes instead of the US (obviously) and everyone over here is very aware of the fact that Sweden has won 3 gold medals and those guys (and girl) are all in the news and newspapers.  Another tid bit is that Shawn Crawford was running in the Olympics.  Shawn Crawford played football with Mario and attended Indian Land high school and for all you IPTAY people he did graduate from Clemson.  Yes South Carolina was representing.   So we watched Olympic coverage of one of Mario's high school classmates in Swedish.  It was micke bra.

Game

This Saturday, at what would be 9 am eastern standard time, we played the Solna Chiefs again on the worst field in Europe.  This game was the first round of the playoffs.  Since we last played Solna they had signed 2 more imports and these guys were from Canada and they still had the same Qb from Cali.  So our team wore as many wristbands and underarmour as possible and anything to cover body parts and went to play.  My lower back had been tight and I couldn't move like I wanted to, but I managed through the game.  We had more guys this week and so it was a better game for us.  The defense finally came out to play and we won 64 - 39.  I threw 6 tds and ran 1 on a sneak.  It seems that over here these guys don't take the season too serious or just serious enough to make it to the playoffs and then when they start then everyone wants to jump on board.  By winning this game we advanced to the semi-finals where we will play Carlstad again.  I'm curious to see how many people will actually show up to take the long ride and go back and play again.  Carlstad seems to be a smaller town where football has some pride in the community...much like that of Turku and of Pageland and they have an American coach as well.

Also, I have also been nominated for " Import Player of The Year " which basically means " American Player of The Year ".  They will give the award out on Sept 4th at the league banquet so I'll let you guys know if I get it.

Since we won like half of the team wanted to go out downtown.  I was able to talk one of the guys here into letting me use his digital camera since my web page has been lacking of pictures this year.  Since I had the camera we took as many pictures as possible and I can not post them all because some were very blurry due to motion, nights, and lights and so fourth.  One neat place we went to had an " Ice Bar " .  We got good pics of it, but we did not go in as we had a crowd and the place has a limit on how many people can get in.  We would have had to wait forever but I may go back to see what its like.  I think it would have been Big Franks kind of place since you would always be " cool ".

 

These girls went crazy at the sound of Mario's name

Mario and the Liberty Point

 

Regards,

Clint

 


Week 7 / Open Week 2

Well there was not too much going on this week as it was rainy and dreary outside and since we had no game.  As I stated before this was our originally scheduled off week.  Since it was raining outside a few days this week, I stayed in and messed around.  The weather over here is very fickle.  For those of you with a weak vocabulary, fickle means that it changes easily.  It will be hot one day, then cold the next and rain can come and go at the drop of a hat.  During the week I was on the net until my eyes crossed and then I watched some TV as well.  This is when I noticed that the censorship here is not as tight as it is in the states.  That is audio and visual censorship.  It was similar in Finland as well.  We still had practice this week and I lifted weights a time or two, but I was still sore from the game.

I squeezed in my first tennis match early in the week.  I have never played tennis before and if I could keep it between the lines its pretty hard to return, but the keeping it between the lines part gives me some problems.  I went and played with some friends and Ilija and his brother.   When Ilija and his brother played it was like watching 2 professionals.  They made me stand in there for a few hits and the balls were coming so fast I couldn't hardly see them, much less return them.    Tennis is a big sport over here, but soccer seems to be #1 with hockey coming in at #2.  Who knows where American football falls in that sequence.  I also saw a rugby match this week as well.

This week they had a holiday on Thursday, I believe, so everyone was out in the street during the day and out on the town at night.  During the day they have people just singing in the middle of town square to everyone.  Its like a free concert if you like that kind of music.  They seem to draw somewhat decent crowds.   I went to the big mall here called the NK one day with some friends and also went in several other stores downtown.   Lets just say that I will never be buying anything inside of the NK building.  One of my friends here bought a T-shirt that that would equal a price of 40 dollars...just to give you an idea.  Though there were some attractive females on the inside.  On a side note...I don't think that I have my hours adjusted totally as I continue to stay up late and sleep in.  This way I can talk to my friends on line from the states as well as manage my schedule here.  The nights are starting to be lighter longer which makes it hard to adjust to.

On Friday night some of the guys went out downtown.  We went to 2 different clubs/restaurants or whatever you want to call it.  There was a woman in there taking pictures.  I asked her what she was taking them for and so she informed me that there is a nightlife website for Stockholm and so I jumped in behind two girls while they were having their picture taken.  I was laughing, but click here to see it.  Then I was able to get Ilija away from all of the women long enough to get a picture with him.  Check it out here.  Yeah so maybe I should have shaved, but there wasn't anything worth me shaving for in there anyways...hahahaa.

So on Saturday since we didn't have a game we went to  watch 2 teams in our league play.  I also met another guy from my last years team in Finland at the game.  We had planned to meet there and so it was good to see none other than Mr. Kasper Johanson and his woman at the game.  He rode the boat over to hang out with his brother who lives in Stockholm so he just swung right over to the game and watched it with us.  We watched the Stockholm Mean Machines vs Carlstad.  Upon entering the game we got a free magazine that had half clothed women in it.  Another thing you wouldn't see at home.  Carlstad is the team that wore us out in the first week and Stockholm beat them 26 - 21.  Stockholm capitalized on some big plays during the game and were able to hold on for the victory.  There was some pad popping going on in that game too.  During the game one player injured his inner thigh.  So what did they do...he just laid down on the sideline, pulled his football pants down and the female trainer was their massaging his inner thigh.  I mean he still had other clothing on, but it was just something that you would not have seen at home.  At half time they had a punt, pass, kick contest, but I didn't enter though I would have won by a long shot.  I was tempted though.

On another side note Arlanda beat the team from Moscow in the Eurobowl series.  I'm trying to paint a picture here for you so you can see how the deck is stacked.  The team I played for last year ( Turku Trojans ) beat Arlanda 10 - 0 two weeks ago.  The following week we played Arlanda and lost  22 - 21.  Turku lost to Moscow 42 - 0 on that same day and then Arlanda beats Moscow this weekend 17 - 7.  So it seems that on any given day any team can be beat.  Hopefully we'll get our act together and be able to compete.

Today is Sunday and my cousin David Patterson flew into Sweden.  He just recently graduated and this was his first time in Europe and I was present when he sat foot in Scandinavia.  On the way there and on the way back we saw some moose.  We saw a total of 3.  One of the guys, " Diesel " as known by females all over Stockholm, was with us and he said that its not that frequent that you see something like that.  He said that he's seen maybe 3 or 4 in his whole life.  So as you can see whenever you have more than one Patterson at the same place anything magical can happen.  Who knows what will happen downtown this week.  We had some girls at McDonald's giggling already.  I think they notice that you're not from Europe when they see you with baggy pants on.  That's pretty much the tip because baggy is not the style here.  We will try to get some good pictures while David is here and post them on the site next week.

Now we are preparing to play against the Solna Chiefs.  We need to have a good week of practice because its time that we get a W.  Hope all is well for all of you.

Regards,

Clint

 


Week 7 / Game 6

This week marked my 7th week being here, which puts me around the middle of my trip here. I have a little over 7 weeks left and it seems like I've come a long ways, but still have a long ways to go and some business to try to finish with the Roosters coming up sooner than later. From talking to some of you on Instant Messengers and Emails I understand its getting hot and humid at home. Thats one thing that I do not miss at all. I will let you guys have the heat while I'm over here and the humidity is not close to that of SC.

Since we played on Sunday last week we didn't go lift on Monday because we got back late and because I could hardly feel my body and the soreness didn't leave until about Wednesday or Thursday. We did lift the rest of the week and I think I strained a muscle in my left shoulder area. Must be getting too much mass for my tendons to handle or something. It wasn't anything serious, but I probably won't push it too much more because I don't want to press my luck on it. During the week when we walk to the restaurant we have to cut through the center of town and like 3 times this week I saw one of those guys who stands still like a statue. The only other place I've ever seen that before was in New Orleans. You drop them money in the box and then they change positions. Its amazing how real they look and how many people will just walk by and not even notice them. I may try to get this guy on camera if I can catch him on the right day. We still see drunks every day when we walk. They sleep in the bus stops and walk zig zags everywhere on the sidewalk and sometimes in the roads. I also had a guy talk to me this week about playing ball in Italy sometime. I have to get in touch with him to see about that. I have no clue about the league over there, but if I find out anything I'll post it.

On one of the nights this past week the club that our friend on the team works at had a bikini contest and yes I did take my camera. I assure you that this contest wasn't that of a bikini contest in South Beach and I think Myrtle Beach may have an edge on them too. I have attached some pics of the contest. The tallest girl ended up winning, though I didn't think she was the prettiest one. Sorry the light is low in the pics, but you know how it is in a club. Just had to post a pic or two of some girls so you guys would get off my back.



This week we had to play the Porvoo Butchers. It was an away game on grass and it rained about an hour before the game so everything was wet and the balls were tough to throw. This team's record would put them in the top 5 teams in the league, but we were suppose to beat them since we are in the tops in the rankings as far as records go. Well Marlon still isn't all the way healed so he sat out this game again and is probably not going to play the next 2 weeks as the upcoming opponents records aren't that great. The team just wants Marlon ready for the playoffs and so that is what we are trying to do. Our other starting linebacker was also hurt and didn't play. We are still missing other guys on defense too. Its weird because in Finland, in the summer, I guess everyone gets like a 4 week vacation and so our players are coming and going. Playing when they are here and then when they get back. You have to remember that its a hobby for many of these guys. So our numbers this week were down and our team's "body language" going into the game showed it. We didn't have that fire or that look in the eyes as you would call it.

The other team won the toss and elected to receive. They got the ball and had a long "central like" drive on us and scored. It looked as if it was going to be a long day from the first drive. Then when they kicked off to us, we fumbled the kickoff and they recovered. A few minutes later they scored again. So it was 14-0 before our offense even got on the field. On the next kickoff we got the ball about the 25 or 30 and our offense went out there and on the first play I hit one of our receivers on a post and he ran it in for the TD. Since the other team was a running team the clock had been running a lot and our offense only got 1 play in the first quarter and it was a TD pass. After this it was just who could score the most because we couldn't stop their running game and they couldn't stop our passing game. Since our numbers were down some of our lineman were having to go both ways and so they were getting tired. So before half time they started breaking through our line and kept doing it the rest of the game so I had to scramble a lot (again). This seems to be a trend here, but whatever it takes to get it done. I don't know the stats yet, but I would say this was my most rushing yards this season in one game. I ran for 3 td's and threw 2 td passes and we were lucky to get out of that place with a 42 - 35 win as we scored with a few minutes remaining. Our defense held them on the goal line then we ran the clock out. I also got my first European personal foul (and I think the first one of my life). Early in the game we called a pass play and as I was dropping back I glanced at my Tight End only to notice that their guy tackled him right on the line. I went to the ref and said "Mr. Ref" and he yelled at me "WHAT" and I was like " What????" I couldn't figure out why he was yelling at me. I said " the D-end tackled our guy" and he looked at me and said " Your man did it to himself" . I figured he just couldn't speak english that well or understand me correctly so I just said " whatever " and out came the hanky and minus 15 yards on us because of me. It was ok though cause I threw a Td pass like 3 plays later, but I quit talking and paying that guy any attention since I was on his bad list. I got MVP of the game too.



After the game Marlon and I didn't ride the bus home. We went to Tampere, Finland. Its like the second biggest city in Finland or something. Some of the guys on our team live there and so we stayed with them for the night. We went to some clubs over there and toured the town. It was a nice place and the guys really took care of us and made sure that we didn't have too many girls you know....hahaha, just kidding. It was funny in the club because one guy came up to me and said "hey I saw you on TV last week and I just want to tell you that you are awesome. I really admire your arm." This was kind of weird having someone tell me this, but I just said "kiitos" cause that means thank you. We had a good time in Tampere and you know we sat in a sauna too. We came home today (Sunday) late in the afternoon.

I got this one pic of something that was kind of weird. We were driving on the interstate and were coming up to this bridge like structure crossing over the road. As we got closer to it I noticed that there was no road that ran over the bridge, in fact it wasn't a bridge at all. It was a store that took up the whole structure. I guess they wanted to get business from traffic coming from both ways and you could walk all the way through this thing and there was a restaurant in the middle. I've never seen one like it before so I got a pic so you can see it too. What do you think?

Regards,

Clint


Week 8 / Game 7
   Saw this guy riding down the street this week
  Saw this guy riding down the street this week

Well this week got started off to a normal week, but my hamstrings were a bit tight. So when we went to the weight room on Monday I did some straight leg dead lifts to stretch out my hamstrings and wouldn't you know that I strained a muscle in my lower back. Just my luck so I could hardly walk Monday night and have been sore all week. I couldn't move too well so I didn't practice on Tuesday, but finished up the week practicing. My back does this like 2 times a year and needless to say...I won't be doing any more dead lifts while I'm over here. I didn't lift too much for the rest of the week

This week we saw 2 girls just using the non-existent facilities on the sidewalk in the middle of downtown. These people will just about do anything when they are drunk I think. I mean we were walking right by these girls and they don't giggle, hide, or show any embarassment. I think Marlon and I were more embarassed than they were. I also saw another scuffle this week between a drunk man and a sober guy. It wasn't really enough to call a fight. The statue guy was smoking a cigarrette this week so its official that he's fake.

Sensuelli is only 1 block from my apartment   
Sensuelli is only 1 block from my apartment  

We also went to the pool one day and went to the beach on another day. While we were at the pool we went into one sauna and we were seeing who could take it the longest, while we were constantly throwing more water on the coals and people were coming in and as soon as they sat down they would get up and leave cause they couldn't stand it. We couldn't stand it for too long either. Its weird when you go to the pool or beach with Marlon because he's so big and ripped that everyone is staring at him. Not being white also sticks him out a little too, but I would venture to say that there are benefits that come along with being different.

Since my back was sore I spent most of the week trying to rest it and laying on my bed and pretty much going to every internet site possible. The muscles will loosen up if I lay in one spot for a while so I was doing that along with getting massages and stuff so it did loosen up for the game, but its still sore now... As for the game, we won 42 - 0. The team we were playing hasn't won a game all season so this was what we expected to do to them. I don't feel that I played that well because I was getting to my reads late and just couldn't seem to find the right guys or something sometimes. I threw some off my back leg when I didn't have to and so I need to get my mind right. I got off to a bad start missing some guys I should have hit in the first quarter, but I did finish strong as I had 5 td passes, which makes for 25 so far. My back was getting tight towards the end of the game and I hope it loosens up all the way pretty soon because I don't like playing tentative like that. It was pretty hot out there today. Its not as humid as back home, like I've earlier stated, but to be out under the sun in black jerseys, going as hard as you can still takes it out of you. This is the first "football season" that I've ever had during the summer. I drank a lot of water the night before the game and after the game so I was ok. This upcoming week we have to play the Vaasa Vikings a team that we have already played. We will have to play well against them, but should be able to beat them if we play right. Word on the street is that Marlon Grier may be staging a comeback/breakout appearance in this game. I hope he does and I hope that he doesn't "re-pull" his hamstring cause we could really use him. There have also been rumors that I'm being fined by the federation for my personal foul penalty. If that is true I will appeal it and take it to trial based on the referee's lack of knowledge of the English language.

So while many of you were at the Watermelon parade I was playing ball in Finland. I mean last year at this time I was on a "Tucker Lumber - Check out our studs float". I remind you we did win #1 float last year as well. I won't comment on the watermelon mile. I heard rumors that Mark Tucker was going to ride the float this year and have the theme " We're sold out of studs, but come check out our spindles"....hahahahhaa, those words came from his mouth not mine so dont send me any hate emails. I think this is one of the few festivals that I've missed, but I know you guys got a long fine without me. Afterall whats Pageland with minus one redneck....still Pageland. It would have been nice to be there though, but sometimes you just have to do what you have to do. Hopefully the boys are pumping some weights in the "Central Steel Mill" and getting ready to make a state championship run again. The weight room would probably be open more if Round didn't have to run those maters to Columbia, but they better be working hard cause this looks like it may be my first season where I can watch some games. I think another championship would be appropriate about right now. Well I better run to get some food. Hope all of you who are reading, (that is both of you...mama and big frank) are doing well.

Some pics from this week


Week 7 / Game 6

The hottest chick in the bikini contestThis week marked my 7th week being here, which puts me around the middle of my trip here. I have a little over 7 weeks left and it seems like I've come a long ways, but still have a long ways to go and some business to try to finish with the Roosters coming up sooner than later. From talking to some of you on Instant Messengers and Emails I understand its getting hot and humid at home. Thats one thing that I do not miss at all. I will let you guys have the heat while I'm over here and the humidity is not close to that of SC.

Since we played on Sunday last week we didn't go lift on Monday because we got back late and because I could hardly feel my body and the soreness didn't leave until about Wednesday or Thursday. We did lift the rest of the week and I think I strained a muscle in my left shoulder area. Must be getting too much mass for my tendons to handle or something. It wasn't anything serious, but I probably won't push it too much more because I don't want to press my luck on it. During the week when we walk to the restaurant we have to cut through the center of town and like 3 times this week I saw one of those guys who stands still like a statue. The only other place I've ever seen that before was in New Orleans. You drop them money in the box and then they change positions. Its amazing how real they look and how many people will just walk by and not even notice them. I may try to get this guy on camera if I can catch him on the right day. We still see drunks every day when we walk. They sleep in the bus stops and walk zig zags everywhere on the sidewalk and sometimes in the roads. I also had a guy talk to me this week about playing ball in Italy sometime. I have to get in touch with him to see about that. I have no clue about the league over there, but if I find out anything I'll post it.

 The lineup at the bikini contest

On one of the nights this past week the club that our friend on the team works at had a bikini contest and yes I did take my camera. I assure you that this contest wasn't that of a bikini contest in South Beach and I think Myrtle Beach may have an edge on them too. I have attached some pics of the contest. The tallest girl ended up winning, though I didn't think she was the prettiest one. Sorry the light is low in the pics, but you know how it is in a club. Just had to post a pic or two of some girls so you guys would get off my back.

This week we had to play the Porvoo Butchers. It was an away game on grass and it rained about an hour before the game so everything was wet and the balls were tough to throw. This team's record would put them in the top 5 teams in the league, but we were suppose to beat them since we are in the tops in the rankings as far as records go. Well Marlon still isn't all the way healed so he sat out this game again and is probably not going to play the next 2 weeks as the upcoming opponents records aren't that great. The team just wants Marlon ready for the playoffs and so that is what we are trying to do. Our other starting linebacker was also hurt and didn't play. We are still missing other guys on defense too. Its weird because in Finland, in the summer, I guess everyone gets like a 4 week vacation and so our players are coming and going. Playing when they are here and then when they get back. You have to remember that its a hobby for many of these guys. So our numbers this week were down and our team's "body language" going into the game showed it. We didn't have that fire or that look in the eyes as you would call it.

The other team won the toss and elected to receive. They got the ball and had a long "central like" drive on us and scored. It looked as if it was going to be a long day from the first drive. Then when they kicked off to us, we fumbled the kickoff and they recovered. A few minutes later they scored again. So it was 14-0 before our offense even got on the field. On the next kickoff we got the ball about the 25 or 30 and our offense went out there and on the first play I hit one of our receivers on a post and he ran it in for the TD. Since the other team was a running team the clock had been running a lot and our offense only got 1 play in the first quarter and it was a TD pass. After this it was just who could score the most because we couldn't stop their running game and they couldn't stop our passing game. Since our numbers were down some of our lineman were having to go both ways and so they were getting tired. So before half time they started breaking through our line and kept doing it the rest of the game so I had to scramble a lot (again).  This seems to be a trend here, but whatever it takes to get it done. I don't know the stats yet, but I would say this was my most rushing yards this season in one game. I ran for 3 td's and threw 2 td passes and we were lucky to get out of that place with a 42 - 35 win as we scored with a few minutes remaining. Our defense held them on the goal line then we ran the clock out. I also got my first European personal foul (and I think the first one of my life). Early in the game we called a pass play and as I was dropping back I glanced at my Tight End only to notice that their guy tackled him right on the line. I went to the ref and said "Mr. Ref" and he yelled at me "WHAT" and I was like " What????" I couldn't figure out why he was yelling at me. I said " the D-end tackled our guy" and he looked at me and said " Your man did it to himself" . I figured he just couldn't speak english that well or understand me correctly so I just said " whatever " and out came the hanky and minus 15 yards on us because of me. It was ok though cause I threw a Td pass like 3 plays later, but I quit talking and paying that guy any attention since I was on his bad list. I got MVP of the game too.  

MVP trophy from this week MVP trophy from this week

After the game Marlon and I didn't ride the bus home. We went to Tampere, Finland. Its like the second biggest city in Finland or something. Some of the guys on our team live there and so we stayed with them for the night. We went to some clubs over there and toured the town. It was a nice place and the guys really took care of us and made sure that we didn't have too many girls you know....hahaha, just kidding. It was funny in the club because one guy came up to me and said "hey I saw you on TV last week and I just want to tell you that you are awesome. I really admire your arm." This was kind of weird having someone tell me this, but I just said "kiitos" cause that means thank you. We had a good time in Tampere and you know we sat in a sauna too. We came home today (Sunday) late in the afternoon. I got this one pic of something that was kind of weird. We were driving on the interstate and were coming up to this bridge like structure crossing over the road. As we got closer to it I noticed that there was no road that ran over the bridge, in fact it wasn't a bridge at all. It was a store that took up the whole structure. I guess they wanted to get business from traffic coming from both ways and you could walk all the way through this thing and there was a restaurant in the middle. I've never seen one like it before so I got a pic so you can see it too. What do you think?

The store covering the bridge

Regards,

Clint

 


Clint Patterson

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