by Tom Finkel
Y'know how sometimes you're just minding your own business, doing your editing thing with one eye and trolling the internets with the other (myopic) one, and out of nofreakingwhere, a veritable bolt from the blue jumps up and socks you one in such a way that for an instant, or maybe even for the better part of a minute, the mystery of the universe reveals itself to you?
How else to explain that -- far, far, far from what you've assumed -- all those moronic commercials for Sonic Drive-Ins you've watched between innings of Cardinals games are actually trying to tell you something!
Now, if only we could figure out what they're trying to tell us...
Meantime, like the best French fry you've ever tasted, delectate over this passage from Nicholas Dawidoff's most excellent New York Times Magazine profile of larger-than-life (literally; the man's immense) Jets football coach Rex Ryan:
[Jets general manager Mike] Tannenbaum says there were two events last year that made him sure of what a genuine article he had in Ryan. The first was one of those early occasions in a relationship that, when looked back upon, seems of defining, if slightly inexplicable, importance. These being men, it involved a road trip and many hamburgers. Ryan, Tannenbaum, [Jets offensive coordinator Brian] Schottenheimer and the quarterbacks coach, Matt Cavanaugh, were going to Kansas to scout a potential draft choice, Kansas State quarterback Josh Freeman. Ryan dutifully appeared wearing a dress shirt and crisp trousers, as he had for the many business dinners and events he attended since being hired. This time, Tannenbaum told his new coach: "Rex, he's a draftable player. He has to impress us." Ryan's eyes grew big. He disappeared back into his office and re-emerged wearing a flowing garment which he referred to as "the dress sweats." The four men jetted west, landed and got their rental car, a pick-up truck. Ryan drove, Tannenbaum rode shotgun, Schottenheimer and Cavanaugh sat knees to chest in back. Stories of the Plains were told by Ryan. Soon all four were dusty. Nobody minded. They watched Freeman throw and run. They were impressed, though not as much as they would be by Mark Sanchez of the University of Southern California. Then, on the way to the airport, Ryan suggested a visit to a Sonic Drive-In for some refreshments. Most of the items on the menu were ordered, including, for Ryan, a cup of limeade the size of Topeka. The truck shook. Nobody can say why. Possibly it was many men eating. The result was that Ryan's cup began to spill. Freshets of limeade poured everywhere. "Oh, no!" Ryan cried. "The dress sweats!" It has become an iconic line, and every time those words occur to Tannenbaum, he feels happiness.