Bracket racket, and "2"


Yesterday was momentous, as I filled out my first-ever March Madness bracket.

The night before this happened, I was on the phone with Graham, asking, “So, this whole March Madness thing? Is it basketball? Why is it ‘madness’? Who plays? Everyone? And then each team that wins plays another team? Until one team wins the entire thing? What happens if you fill out your bracket with the right predictions? What do you win? Is this important at all?” Clueless.

For several years now, I have been invited to join the Clader family bracket, but have ignored the invitation. Because really, who cares, right? But not this year. This is the year of The Living Big, meaning that I need to do things that I normally might not do. March Madness bracketing is a perfect example of something I might not normally do.

Hannah sent me an invitation to join the bracketing mayhem, and I painstakingly filled out my prophecies. My process went like this:
a) Look at the two teams.
b) Read the names silently to myself.
c) Say the names out loud.
d) Choose based on phonetics, and whether or not I had ever heard of the school before.

There are a lot of colleges that I just didn’t know existed.

In the end, I wound up with Georgia winning the tournament. I don’t know if this is good or bad, but I like the sound of the word Georgia, and I definitely knew that it existed.

Bonus feature:
After finishing the bracket, I had the opportunity to enter something in a box labeled “Tiebreaker.” What were they asking for? A number? A yes/no? A person’s name? I went with my gut instinct and answered “2.” That sounded good. As it turns out, “Tiebreaker” is asking for the total score in the final game. So no, Annie, most likely, the answer will not be “2.” I think it’s safe to say that I will not win.



  1. Deborah Barnett on March 18, 2008 at 8:40 AM

    yet another reason why you are one of my new favorite people.

    Love The Annie!’re right, 2 would be a boring game. The scores are usually pretty high… especially when the get a lot of field goals.

  2. bec on March 18, 2008 at 9:20 AM

    i fill one out most years, but honestly it always comes down to kansas or duke winning since those are the only two teams i know are any good. and, let’s be honest, i chose a couple of schools to win because they were the retrievers and the bulldogs.

    good luck.

  3. Kelli on March 18, 2008 at 9:46 AM

    That’s awesome that you just filled out your first bracket. I filled out my first one about 5 years ago, and won, so you never know!!

  4. Megan Brady on March 18, 2008 at 10:51 AM

    Oh my gosh- are we kindred spirits or WHAT? I would have approached the situation in the EXACT same way.

    Too bad you didn’t have pictures of the mascots or the school colors- that would have been an important and extremely helpful deciding factor as well.

  5. Katie Laird on March 18, 2008 at 6:48 PM

    you had a # 14 seed winning the entire tournament??!! did you take into account the seeding- #s 1-16? you know, those mean something a little bit. but i approve that you also considered phonetics–an often overlooked factor. how about ‘kansas’? just rolls off your tongue. ,and you have to smile to say it…

  6. Annie Parsons on March 18, 2008 at 8:31 PM

    Katie, don’t say words like “seeding” to me. Total jibberish. I tune out.

    Actually, you want to know the most embarrassing part? I remember seeing those numbers, but I assumed that 14 meant “In a poll of 16 people, 14 are rooting for Georgia.”

    And that is the honest truth. Katie, I need you in my life.

  7. graham r on March 18, 2008 at 10:05 PM

    well, if that’s the case… that 1 person who roots for KU knows what they’re doing!

  8. Tyler on March 18, 2008 at 10:22 PM

    Yes! Katie is right. I see the problem, though, is the Annie got her info on Brackets from Graham.

    OH, snap!

  9. ashley & jeremy parsons on March 19, 2008 at 9:24 AM

    Bahahaah. Jeremy must have laughed so hard when he read this. :)

  10. Katie Laird on March 19, 2008 at 9:39 AM

    oh, snap.

    in a poll of 16 people… i haven’t laughed that much since ‘charlie bit me.’ that is why i need you, annie

    however, there is some logic in your mishap. in a poll of 16 people, i bet the overwhelming majority (say, 14) would root for the really bad team. go underdogs (except ku, go superpower)

  11. Jeremy Parsons on March 19, 2008 at 7:46 PM

    Jeremy did laugh. . . so hard.

    2. Awesome. For a soccer game.

    See? It’s madness.

  12. Laura on March 19, 2008 at 8:28 PM

    Annie, you are so funny. You’ll probably win the bracket, and all the serious people will be mad about it.

  13. Case and Los on March 19, 2008 at 11:45 PM

    Annie, I’ll share my very scientific way of bracketing. I pick teams based on places I’ve been and like, and when it’s a tie I go for cuter team colors:)

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