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  • Ednold

Mohawk 4/2/21

First things first. Before we get to this week’s game, let’s all take a silent minute to reflect on the life of a former employee here at CPHC: G. Gordon Liddy. Gordon’s stint with us was brief and, as with everything else he did, completely unsuccessful. None of you under the age of about 65 will even have any idea who he was or understand why I put him on the payroll for a while back in the fall of 2019, so you’ll just have to take my word for it - it was funny. If you know nothing else about him, you should at least know that without Daddy Gee we wouldn’t have the Steely Dan song "My Old School". True story. Look it up. Like most idiots, he lived to a ripe old age and was 90 years old when he died this week. Has he gone on to a better place? Well, lets’ just say he’ll never have trouble staying warm. Good luck Gordon.

It was a warm, slightly overcast late afternoon as we made our way toward the football game this week. It was week 5 of this weird, abbreviated, spring football season, and we drove east on highway 228 toward Holley . But that wasn’t our destination, so I hung a right at Crawfordsville and drove south up into the mountains in the direction of Mabel. Sorry Holley, but you know if it’s a choice between you and Mabel you’re going to come in second place every time. And petite little Mabel was looking as fine as ever, but we had a football game to get to and when we got to Mabel we just waved to her as we went by and kept on toward our real destination of Marcola. Marcola, coincidentally, was my nickname for a brief period of time in about the seventh grade. I don’t recall what I did to earn it or why anyone thought Marcola was a good nickname for someone named Ednold, but it was pretty cool for the few weeks it lasted.

Marcola, in the Mohawk Valley northeast of Eugene, was actually named for the wife of the town’s founder, Mary Cole. They dropped a Y and an E and stuck an A onto the end of it and - voila! Marcola! The little town stretches out along the west bank of the Mohawk River, which was named for the valley it runs through. If you’re like me, maybe you’ve wondered why a river and a valley in Oregon share a name with a tribe of Indians who were never even on this half of the continent. Weird, right? For that, you can thank a guy named Jacob Spores. Spores was one of the first white men to settle in the southern Willamette Valley and he ran the ferry across the McKenzie River in Coburg right about where I-5 crosses the river today. Spores was a native New Yorker, and when he saw the valley for the first time he thought it looked like the Mohawk Valley in upstate New York. So without Mr. Spores, this football game would probably not have been played at a place named Mohawk High School, home of the Mustangs. Another fun fact: Courtney Love lived in Marcola at one time, so, though we didn't see it, I'm guessing it has it's freaky side.

This football season has been weird. If this season were an animal it would be a cross between a weiner dog and a platypus; a weinerpus, if you will. Short and strange. I recently copyrighted that word, by the way, so feel free to work it into your own conversations. Just send the checks payable to Ednold at CPHC. Weinerpus: Short and strange. Before this virus went viral I would fast for the afternoon of the game in anticipation of sampling the offerings of the concession stands. But this mutant weinerpus season has meant having to count on local dining establishments to fill us up before the games. We had especially good luck at the Siletz Roadhouse in week 1 and were pleasantly surprised this week to find that Marcola has its own Roadhouse. I know! Two Roadhouses? That’s just crazy! The fries weren't quite as good as the ones we had in Siletz, but when I say the Marcola Roadhouse has the best food in town it's not just because it's probably the only food in town. It was good. So, our second visit to a Roadhouse this season was another success, but I get the uneasy feeling we’re pushing our luck a little bit. One day we’ll stop at a Roadhouse and the half-naked ghost of Patrick Swayze will jump out and kick me in the face. Mrs. Ednold is probably hoping for a glimpse of that half naked ghost, but it’s not something I’m looking forward to.

Bellies full, we crossed the bridge across the river and pulled into the school parking lot. I should say we were going to pull into the parking lot until we saw the sign that said "Football Field ". Attendance policies have been a bit of a crap shoot during the weinerpus season, so once again we didn't know what we were in for as we followed the arrow onto a gravel road, across an old wooden bridge, and through a gate into the grass parking lot surrounding the field. What we found were people behaving like adults, keeping their distance and wearing their masks without anyone taking any tickets or restricting entry to anyone who wanted to be there. How refreshing. Many people chose to park next to the perimeter fence but several had also pulled up to the edge of the "track" surrounding the field to watch from their cars. They had left a spot for us in a perfect place near the west end zone, so we grabbed it. Though we could have just watched the action from there, it's not quite the same experience as hanging with the rest of the crowd, so we walked across to the home side of the field and found a corner of one of the small aluminum bleachers where we were surrounded by Mustang fans without having to be too close to any of them.

The north side visitors' seating

Mohawk High School might be the best place we've been to to watch a football game. Camas Valley was beautiful, but the Mohawk setting is spectacular, with the field in the valley surrounded by the mountains. The field isn't right next to the school. The building is beyond a creek and through some trees so, as

Mrs. Ednold pointed out, it has a Field of Dreams feel to it. There's no running track around the field and the small bleachers on each side are aluminum portables, so the only permanent features are the lights and the elevated press box. You're just out in the middle of the trees and the mountains where this playing field seems to have cropped up on its own. It's awesome. The PA announcer was funny and the student in the Mustang mascot outfit was as good as you could expect from a high school student. It was missing a band and some cheerleaders, which I assume we would have seen in a non-weinerpus season, and it wasn't a large crowd, but cheers of "Go Mo" could be heard throughout, the atmosphere was fun and relaxed, and the people were all friendly and thoroughly enjoyed themselves. I don't know what the concession facilities are normally like but something tells me they serve some pretty good stuff at a normal-season Mohawk game.

Since their game last week against Mapleton was canceled, the Mustangs came in only having played two games this season. And both were against… the Perrydale Pirates!. The Mustangs lost the game away but bounced back to win at a neutral site the next week, so they’re on a roll. It’s a tiny roll, like that last one you make with the little scraps of dough left at the bottom of the bowl, but it’s a roll nonetheless. Their opponents, the Falls City Mountaineers, were 2-1 and both of their wins had come against those same Pirates of Perrydale, including the 32 point win last weekend after we were run out of town. Lots of teams are playing each other more than once this season. Weinerpus.

Home side (south) seating

Mohawk has played in the state championship game 5 times and won three of them, the first coming in 1948. They lost a couple in the 60s and 70s before winning again in both 2005 and 2007. Competing in the Northern Division of 1A Special District 1, the Mustangs finished fourth in the league with a 3-6 record in 2019, so I wasn’t expecting to see a powerhouse team take the field this weekend. But it turned out to be a very evenly matched, exciting game. Special District 1 is an 8-man league, so there was a lot of room on the field for the offenses to run around in, but it feels much more like an 11-man game than a 6-man game, with more conventional tactics than you see with only 6 men on each side of the ball. The game was tied at 8 at halftime and Falls City took an 8 point lead into the fourth quarter. Mohawk scored a touchdown midway through the fourth but were unsuccessful on the two point conversion and lost 14-16.

We were sad that our attendance hadn't brought a victory to the Mohawk Mustangs, but they played well and they gave us an excuse to go to Mohawk Valley. Marcola is less than ten miles from I-5, but it's on the other side of a mountain ridge that I've seen a thousand times without ever having looked on the other side of that ridge. Now I have. And, oh, by the way, Perrydale lost again, 44-6. It was a very good night.

Maverick, the dancing Mustang

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Apr 03, 2021


You do get around! You went right by Holly? Your great-grandparents had a farm in Holly!

Marcola sounds like a neat place. I don't think I've ever been. I do agree that this year's football season has been a Weinerpus, but you have made it enjoyable anyway,

You two do luck out on finding places to eat. I'd like to learn your secret.

Not sure what to make of G. Gordon Liddy...............He was a real rat in my estimation. I'll have to look up the song and how it came about.

Keep up the good work. RJS


Apr 03, 2021

Sounds like a great place to watch football. I once had a fraternity brother who hailed from Marcola. He lived just a few miles from Eugene, but made it sound like the Appalachian backwoods.

As for G.Gordon.......don't forget we old and cranky 'Daddy Gees' have our place in the world.

Good job.

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