Okay, so he's not famous. But today he got his picture in the Minneapolis Star/Tribune. He's the World Champion for doubles in Foosball. My mom called me and told me to go out and get a copy, if I didn't already have one.
The picture is a sort-of action shot, my brother grimacing as if he were just about to make a shot. If you tried to take a picture during the action, you wouldn't see anything. He's pretty fast.
What is foosball, you might ask? Foosball was wildly popular in the 1970s and early 1980s. Since video games came in style, it has plummeted in popularity, but there was a short while that it was very hot to be a foosball player. Now, you don't hear much about it anymore. It's not quite extinct, but it's definitely waning in popularity.
There are times I've wondered about my brother's strange hobby. Tournaments are often held in smoke-filled bars, which lends a seedy quality to the whole endeavor. I often wonder why he doesn't have a more wholesome talent, like playing the electric bass or hitting home runs. But, he probably wonders why his sister became a PASTOR, of all things. Probably I am an embarrassment ... in certain circles, Christians are even less popular than foosball.
I have to admit, as well, that there are times I wouldn't mind getting into the newspaper. In fact, there was a brief period of time, about two years ago when, 1) I got my name (and a picture of the back of my head) in the paper associated with our congregation's annual footwashing service on Maunday Thursday, 2) I got a letter in the local suburban newspaper advocating for immigrants and arguing that we are more alike than we might suppose; 3) I had a one-minute spot on the evening news ... regarding how Protestants felt on the passing of John Paul II. At the time, I thought, my ship has come in! But there hasn't been a nibble since then.
The genesis of this blog revolved around an article I sent to our local newspaper. I thought it was very good (and well written too). But they didn't seem to think so. So it became my first blog entry.
We'll probably frame the newspaper article about my brother. After all, he is the world champion! They don't have world champion pastors (do they?) and I suppose that's a good thing. But I sure would have liked to see an article in the newspaper with my byline.