High School teammates at Vernon Hills, DaVaris Daniels (dark blue) and Evan Spencer (red) are now top collegiate wideouts at Notre Dame and Ohio State, respectively. | ASSOCIATED PRESS FILE PHOTOS
Updated: September 28, 2013 3:20AM
Random thoughts from someone so old that he set the odds and took the action on the famous duel between Alexander Hamilton and then-vice president Aaron Burr on July 1,1804, and has been broke ever since as a result of having to make a huge payout when Burr wound up the upset winner.
■ Waukegan High School grad Rashaan Melvin is wearing No. 28 in camp with the Tampa Bay Bucs. The team’s first preseason game is Aug. 1 against Baltimore.
Currently, there are 10 cornerbacks in the camp, including superstar Darrell Revis.
According to the projections of website wwwbucsnation.com, Tampa Bay will keep seven cornerbacks on its 53-man roster and Rashaan — who played his college football at NIU in DeKalb — WILL be one of them. Here’s what was blogged about Rashaan.
“Pewter Report highlighted Rashaan Melvin as a sleeper and someone the coaches like a lot.”
Website Pewterreport.com is all-Tampa Bay Bucs all the time.
■ The greatest amusement-park ride ever invented was the Log Flume — thrilling enough for a family’s kids to be willing to ride and not so gut-wrenching as to keep the parents off it.
■ Someone emailed a story about how beer sales at Wrigley Field were way down this year ... more so than a drop in attendance would justify.
One beer at the Friendly Confines is selling this year for $7.75.
End of discussion.
■ Remembering July 24, 2006 — the day your favorite daily, local newspaper changed from being shaped like the Chicago Tribune or USA Today to being shaped like the Chicago Sun-Times.
Same newspaper, mind you. Same content. Same ads. Same cost. Same everything, except it was packaged differently. When that new packaging occurred, the readers were not happy.
Thought about that while shopping the other day. Nabisco Honey Grahams ... new packaging. Don’t like it.
Skippy peanut butter ... new packaging. Don’t like it.
Funny thing about the shape of our newspaper is that, nowadays, you’d hear a ton of grumbling if we went back to the old shape.
It remains to be seen if the new packaging for Honey Grahams and Skippy is as well-received in the long run as our change in newspaper shape has been.
■ The next great word to be invented is the one to describe that feeling in your heart and stomach at the instant you drive past a police car that’s parked alongside the road while you’re driving 18 miles above the posted speed limit.
■ Sometimes, being wrong works out just right.
And so it was with a piece appeared in this spot in the paper a while back suggesting that Great America in Gurnee opened its doors for the first time in 1971.
Nope. An ever-sharp reader pointed that out it opened on May 29, 1976. But the cool part of the mistake she has a fascinating story to share about the opening of the amusement park, and it’s going to be shared with you guys today:
“Great America opened on May 29, 1976. It has not been open for 42 years. I was a member of the Warren Marching Blue Devils and we played for the opening of the park. We lined up around the Carousel at the park’s entrance for our performance as part of the opening ceremony. Marriott opened that park and one in Santa Clara in honor of the bicentennial and that’s why they named them Great America.
“Also, we rented a small house on the property in the area where the Washington Street entrance is from February 1969 until November 1973. Our landlord sold land that he had previously rented out for farming to Marriott in addition to the property where two houses sat. My dad and brothers hunted pheasant on the farmland after the farmers finished their harvesting each year.
“he construction was to begin in 1974 and with the sale of the land, we moved to Gages Lake in November 1973 where my dad still lives. In 1984, Six Flags bought the park. I worked there in the summer as a ticket seller so I also know that for a fact.”
Have to tip the Warren High cap to that lady, not just because she corrected the error, but she supplied a back story that’s much more interesting than the date itself.
■ Expect to see a lot of Tommy Rees-to-DaVaris Daniels pass plays for Notre Dame this fall.
Two of the more highly regarded Irish wideouts transferred during the summer, opening the playing field for Daniels, a graduate of Vernon Hills High School.
And, of course, Rees — who, ironically, was the starting QB for Lake Forest High School the only time in the last five years the Scouts DIDN’T make the playoffs — was annointed Irish starting QB when the expected starter got booted out of school.
Rees is a senior and Daniels is a redshirt sophomore.
Meanwhile, Daniels’ running mate at Vernon Hills, Evan Spencer, is emerging as a prime-time wideout at Ohio State.
■ Long felt that the best advertisement the Lake County Fair had over the years was its location at the intersection of routes 120 and 45 in Grayslake.
Each day, how many thousands and thousands of cars pass that intersection, and would be reminded that it was fair week?
The current site may have a ton of advantages over the old one, but its location as a promotional vehicle isn’t one of them.