Quick programming note: if anyone is going to be in the Columbia Heights area around 5:30 today, please join us and others for a very special event. E-mail us for details if you are interested. And now: Darlo gives it his all with 300 or so words for winning Commenter Of the Week. Darlo?

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Greetings, Randballers. In this space I will try to wield my words carefully, and not as though carelessly tucked into my waistband, ready to shoot a hole through my leg and into the floor.

It goes without saying, but we’re rapidly approaching that point in time where so many sports seasons converge, and we, as (for the most part) Minnesota sports fans adjust our optimism and exhilaration as (seemingly) nonchalantly as we adjust our clocks.

Early in the season, a few friends and I purchased tickets to the Twins’ weekend series in Kansas City at the end of September. At the time, speculating the details of game day was exciting. Will the Twins be winning (or at least competing for) the division? Will Mauer still be flirting with .400? Over time, those expectations have, of course, fallen. Can we beat the Royals? Will we get to see a prospect or two (Danny Valencia, I’m looking at you) get a few games in the bigs? Will the Boulevard Brewery tour end up as the unequivocal highlight of the trip?

And so it is in guarded, hushed tones that we turn and begin to speak of optimism for the Vikings’ season. We don’t speak too loudly, for fear that our words will be inextricably tied to the obliteration of Favre’s ribs or other tragedies too dire to print. Last night, prior to the Randball Lite draft, I witnessed the devastating combo of Nick Punto following Mike Redmond in the lineup and began to – slowly -- take my eggs out of the Twins’ basket and place them, ever so gently, in the Vikings’ basket, careful to leave but a few, should the Twins’ fortunes miraculously change versus the Tigers in days ahead.

So I wondered … are there other, similar events that contribute to the (often, annual) degradation of confidence in the Twins and the inevitable feasting of our collective eyes upon the Vikings? Or is it simply the unrelenting, eroding power of the 162-game season? Front office balks and missteps? Dick-and-Bert induced exhaustion? Here’s to you, Twins-turned-Vikings fans. And while I’m here, anyone know where I can get some good eats in KC? I’ll be looking for some trip highlights, you know.

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TFD: A "GOTFAVR" NoDak license plate and a Packers bumper sticker