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The Long Goodbye

the-long-goodbye.jpgI was just going to write "Thanks!" and leave it at that but after reading some of the epic posts that Bruce, Cpt. Morgan and Buck have put up in the last few days I'm kind of forced to put some effort into this deal.....just go ahead and click onto the next page because this could take some time and you know you are going to get one of my patented stories out of this.

***If the readers are looking for a big thanks, just scroll down to the bottom....otherwise, buckle up.

Scroll Down to Continue Reading

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It was my sophomore year in high school I was desperately trying to make the junior varsity basketball team so I showed up to every team function whether it was a weight lifting session, running on the track or....a team building exercise. One Saturday our coach took us out to the backwoods to help fill in the trails of a ropes course in an effort to make us a better team.

Every single one of you has a role! Some may be running wheelbarrows....some may be shoveling dirt.....some of you might be supervising it all.....but you all have a role. The sooner you know what it is, the better off we are all going to be.  - Coach Fisher
I spent most of that day shoveling dirt in the sweltering heat because that was my role. I never complained, I never questioned what or why we did something and when it hurt, and it hurt....I just clenched my jaw and dug a little deeper. That's what life is about sometimes.

The great thing about Cobra Brigade was that we each had a role and we were able to figure out what our role was going to be really early on. We never talked about what we were supposed to do with our posts other than saying that we could write about whatever was on our minds. There wasn't going to be an editor and we weren't assigning days for each of us to write on. We are adults..... The best part was that since we know each other....we pretty much knew what was going to happen (We are like this on the basketball court too. It's a thing of beauty up until the point where Buck and Bruce start blowing wide open layups to screw up my assist totals). Here is my explanation of the madness that WAS Cobra Brigade.

Buck's role was to help me fill the page with content. He knew that and I knew that. It didn't matter what he wrote about, just that he wrote a few times every week. He did that and more as he turned out to be the best of us at networking in real life while getting us the scoop on Indiana Basketball before most other sites. I knew that I had caught Buck at a point in his life where it might help him to write a little bit...to vent a little bit....to do something different. He's an engineer by trade, he's not supposed to be able to write and talk to people. I/we got lucky to catch him because he's thisclose, thisclose......to doing something really big. You know how you can just see people grow and get ready to make that next big leap? I've been watching Buck get ready for that leap for the last six months. He's more than ready.

Paine's job was to be......Paine. You can't ask a guy like Bruce to be anything other than what he is because he'll just laugh at you and walk away. Most times I knew when he was due to go off of the reservation....other times it took me by surprise. Either way, it always made me laugh. Bruce isn't a guy that most people like at first, he's more of an acquired taste. The first time I met him I had to ride in the backseat of a car for 30 minutes and listen to Bruce talk about Marvin Harrison on the way to playing ball. He didn't stop for more than 15 seconds during that half hour. I hated Bruce at that point and refused to let him score when I guarded him in basketball even though he wouldn't have scored enough points to matter even if I hadn't.......Ah, the life of a 5-11 power forward. Anyways, Bruce can talk and he can sway your opinion, no doubt about that. There is a place in this world for him and while I think that a lot of us can see what it is, it's up to him to find that spot because he won't take it if we just tell him how to do it. Stubborn bastard. You have to love a guy who can break down the offensive line of the Colts one day and come back that very night with texts to me about why certain armies set up to battle in different ways. It took me awhile to convince Paine to contribute and I figured once I did it, because I can be persuasive, that he'd give us one or two posts before deciding he'd had enough. We were fortunate enough to get quite a few posts out of Paine and I think each one lets you inside his mind just enough to make you wonder just how that guy ticks. Take it from me, stop trying to figure it out and just enjoy it.

Now onto Cpt. Morgan....when we are on a court/field together playing base/basket/football, we know exactly what the other is thinking without saying a word. Funny how that works. If I had to walk through Hell and I could take one person to help me, it would be him. Then I would apologize about the heat and ask him why he didn't bring the water bottles. I asked Morgan to participate because I value his effort and his opinion in my life and I knew that having him around these parts would make things easier on me. When I need some advice, I go to Morgan. When I have a bad joke, I go to Morgan. He's my go to friend. End of sentence......I knew Morgan wasn't going to be able to contribute much because of his job but what he did contribute was solid, if not sterling. He brought something to the table that none of us could. He's the glue. It seemed that his medical/injury posts came just when it seemed like we were in need of a little boost. That's how the dude is in real life, too.

You know how people say that they can't thank someone enough? Well, I CAN thank these guys enough. THANKS. That's all it takes with these guys. Pretty easy.

As for me....well my role was probably the easiest......To sit back and laugh as confusion reigned supreme. Sure I threw up a ton of posts but who cares about that stuff. I was the guy people argued with, disagreed with, called names and badgered but for the most part, except for with the IU stuff, it was fun. I did the hustling it took to get us the hits to stay respectable but that's so much easier than most people think. You think bringing this group together was tough? Buy a six pack, give each of them two and talk to them for ten minutes. That's all it took. I asked these guys to post here because I wanted to know their thoughts on what was happening around us. I didn't read any of my own posts after I wrote them (which drives punctuation junkies crazy) because I was moving on to read the stuff that the rest of the Brigade wrote. I already knew what I was thinking, I was just posting to fill the page up with content until the other guys arrived to the dance. I filled my role with my eyes closed most of the time....and that actually helped on the last couple of posts that Bruce had when he was posting pics of half naked women. This site was built mostly for my entertainment. I can be selfish like that.

So that's that and we're done. I suppose that Brian will keep the site running but lock it up so that people can still stop by and read when they get bored. Brian has helped our site out more than anyone realizes as he was the wizard behind the scenes. We couldn't have put up a single post without him and while I had someone tell me that coming to the BlogsbyFans Network was the biggest blogging mistake I've ever made.......it turned out to be better than I ever hoped it could.

By now everyone knows that we're each moving on to do "bigger and better things" with our lives but I'll still miss waking up at 4 am to use the bathroom and getting sucked into reading one of Paine's epic posts and I'll miss the Weekend Shenanigans and the Cougar series by Buck and of course I'll miss Morgan's pictures of exploding knees along with an explanation as to why that happens.....

Luckily for me, these guys are just a phone call away so the site will live on in my little world. Just as it should.

***Here is the big 'Thanks' to our readers/commenters. I don't know what you'll do now during the day at work so try not to get fired while looking at porn. Especially 'kiddie porn', I believe you can go to jail for that, no? Oh you want some advice before I leave??? Grilled cheese. Live it. Love it.
Buck Rampage said

It is amazing how many layups Bruce and I miss. I still can't explain it other than saying that I suck. I can't and won't say Bruce sucks because that would be mean and he puts in a ton of hustle on the court.

Adios muchachos!

Kelper said

Soon to be gone, but not to be forgotten. The Cobra and The Kelper had their share of differences, but no hard feelings perseverate. The Grenades rose with the talent of Jack Cobra, but have become just another memory with the exits of Cobra, Bruce Paine, and soon-to-be exits of Shooter and Short Round. Bloomington is going to be a much quieter place with only The GM blowing up the text message inbox for runs to Buffalo Wild Wings or Nick's English Hut.

I've enjoyed the site from day one, and even was granted an opportunity to provide a Royals post during their single moment of non-crappiness in the last 5 years. I'll certainly miss the camaraderie of CobraBrigade as I'll miss seeing the friends that were it's main contributors.

Cobra will forever hold the title for sending me the funniest text message ever, while sitting only four feet away from me. The text read: "Why is that guy talking so fast?" It was one of those moments where I couldn't help but laugh because it was so true. The guy he was referring to talks as fast as the MicroMachines guy, but always has and has no ability to slow it down. We bust his balls for it, and it drives him nuts...so it was classicly funny when JC sends that text within 5 minutes of meeting him in my living room.

Best of luck in all new endeavors. Farewell CobraBrigade!

Hoosiernation said

First, I would like to address Bruce and Buck's layup situation. Don't feel bad. I missed my fair share in actual games in high school and after my percentage went below 50% I just said screw it and never stepped inside the arc again.
I enjoyed this site very much. While at my last job, I had plenty of time to read and comment. With this start up business, things have been kind of hectic thus less reading and comments from my corner.
I think Kelper hit on something there with the Grenades. Jack-thanks for continuing to ask if I could fill in back a couple of years ago. Since you asked I now take time out of my week to embarrass myself on the field. But, not as embarrassing as watching Buck as 2nd base last year. That was classic. But, I was able to meet some pretty good guys through the Grenades.
I wish all luck down the road. Thanks for the entertainment and making me think about certain topics in the posts.
Buck - I owe you one on the course. I now know my weapon to beat you. I must drink a sixer before playing the front nine.
By the way Jack - do you still have the bring orange "Bird Bash" shirt? Just a random thought as I did take mine to Goodwill recently so a underprevilaged kid could buy it and feel like he was part of history as it was the first Bird Bash.

Bruce Paine said

You assholes. You wouldn't have a fast break if it wasn't for me.

Matt J said

Good-bye, fellaz. I've enjoyed reading for the past few months.

Goodbye, entire Cobra crew. I just want to thank Jack personally. When I first proposed that he consider joining this new network over here - not knowing myself where this network was going or anything - I was kinda shocked when Jack actually accepted. I wouldn't have been anywhere nearly as productive in blogging as I was over the past year (past two months aside) if not for the motivation of seeing Jack Cobra's site take off on this very same network.

You guys have put out some really fun stuff over the past year (how many peeps will that kid eat?). Even more impressively, you guys have really managed to convey that sense of friendship and camaraderie that few sites - of any sort - can properly pull off. Reading this site really felt like we were catching you guys in the middle of a discussion or swapping stories at the bar.

That's hard to do (believe me, I've tried many times with the "other" writers on my site), so a big congrats is in order to Jack, Buck, Morgan, and even Bruce Paine (when the apocalypse happens, I'm rolling with Bruce Paine).

Good luck guys. Ya all drop by every once in a while, okay?

Jack Cobra said

By the way Jack - do you still have the bring orange "Bird Bash" shirt?

You probably won't believe me but I'm actually wearing it right now. Seriously.

Jeremiah said

This whole "ending" is stupid. I've got 1 year of under grad and 2 years of law school left. What the F*&k am I supposed to read now?

Why does everyone have to be all happy and back patty. I hate you guys for leaving. Hate at the level of how Hitler hated the Jews.

For old people, you guys are really cool. You guys write great stuff thats really entertaining and sometimes bizarre.

This sucks... the internets suck. Nothing stays around...everyone quits.

Jack, you've got my email. If you start writing/commenting on any other sports sites please let me know.


The GM said

I would like to say thanks to Jack for helping me get started on the network. I do appreciate that as it gave me my own voice.

I definitely miss going to the HPER and getting schooled by kids that think we are part of the faculty. And I'll miss arguing on here about things such as George Leach's rebounding prowess...or lack of it.

Hope that everyone fares well in their future endeavors!


MCBias said

Bye all, have a good life!

Buck Rampage replied to Hoosiernation's comment

What the hell Dick! You got rid of a Bird Bash shirt? That's just wrong. I still rock out all of my Bird Bash shirts and will until they are hanging off my near naked body by a single thread.

"This ain't no jive turkey"

Hoosiernation replied to Buck Rampage's comment

It never really fit me. Remember, I wanted a smedium and got one that resembled a XXL. I wear the "This ain't no jive turkey" and "Smoke my Pole-try" shirts very often. You know some high schooler is going to see that shirt with the words "Chicken and Beer" on it and instantly purchase it.

Redhead said

This is getting depressing - like you all are dying or something. You're still going to come by and visit all of our sites, right? You're not dropping off the face of the earth, are you?

Bruce Paine said

Actually, at any given instant, I am about a hair's breadth from grabbing my rifle and dropping the grid all together. If it wasn't for the streaming episodes of Magnum PI on Netflix I wouldn't even use electricity.

Cucaracha said

How good was Cobra Brigade? If Indiana Jones had read it, he would have liked snakes.

It was an excellent, entertaining run, gentlemen. Best of luck to all of you.

I don't think we'll ever be able to outdo the "Smoke My Poultry" slogan. That one is just too damn good.

Rickhouse said

So is this the post we comment on when the Cubs win the World Series, or will their be another?

Jeremiah said

So is this the post we comment on when Dwayne Wade goes to the Bulls for the #1 pick?

Jeremiah said

I keep checking back here M-F hoping there is going to be a "HAHA Just kidding bitches!" post.

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