It’s been a running joke in my family for about two years now.
Following a high school playoff game at the Alamodome two years ago, my family and I went to dinner at La Fogata. After dinner, I asked for a to-go cup with tea, and our server came back with a cup that looked like a to-go cup for beans or rice and the lid had no straw hole so my cousin-in-law used his pocket knife to cut a hole in the lid so I could put a straw in it.
The general consensus around the family was I didn’t order the drink correctly in Spanish. Nonetheless, it made for some good laughs and memories over the last two years.
On Saturday, we went to La Fogata again following a high school playoff game. Once again, I ordered a drink to go – in English this time – and once again, the drink came in a beans to-go container.
The only difference this time was the lid had a straw hole thanks to our server cutting one for me instead of my cousin-in-law. What doesn’t make sense to me is that a place with enchilada plates running for $10.49 or higher doesn’t have to-go drink cups with to-go drink lids – you would think the restaurant could afford those with food prices like theirs.
Apparently, being illogical is the new rage or fad. While I find it illogical for a pricy restaurant to not have to-go drink cups with to-go drink lids, I find the UIL much more illogical than La Fogata.
I can go on and on about the illogical behavior of the UIL throughout the years, but I’ll just name off a few recent things the organization did that make no sense. In the 2010-12 realignment – the current alignment – Navarro was placed into District 26-3A with five schools west of Interstate-35, while Gonzales, Cuero and Yoakum were placed in a district with four San Antonio area schools.
Navarro is located just three miles north of I-10 in Seguin, and to get from Gonzales to San Antonio, most people travel on I-10 and go through Seguin. So I’ve been scratching my head as to why Navarro isn’t in the same district with Gonzales, Cuero, Yoakum, La Vernia and Sam Houston.
Another head-scratching alignment is District 25-3A, which features Taylor, Salado and four schools located 20 miles or longer west of I-35. Taylor is located 13 miles from Rockdale yet Rockdale is in District 23-3A with a pair of schools located in the Brazos Valley and a trio of schools southeast of Austin and southwest of Bryan/College Station.
This next alignment mishap makes me not want to scratch my head, but rip my hair out – four-team districts. There are a trio of four-team districts in Class A-Division I, four in Class A-Division II and one in 3A.
What’s ridiculous about four-team districts in football is a team essentially just has to win one game to clinch a third-place playoff spot. Such a feat happened this season as Burkeville qualified for the A-DII state playoffs with a 1-6 record.
This is unacceptable to award a one-win team with a trip to the postseason, especially when you have an 8-2 team like Canyon Lake missing the postseason. Until 1982, only the district champion went to the playoffs so there were plenty of 9-1 teams sitting at home after 10 games.
After reading this much, I hope you can understand why I say the UIL stands for “Unbelievably Il-Logical.” In an effort to help the UIL, I have come up with a few tips.
1). Learn how to read a map. If there are schools located within 30 miles of each other, put them in the same district. I understand that there are situations where that is impossible like in the West Texas 5A districts, but just because West Texas schools have horrendous travel issues doesn’t mean that schools located less than 30 minutes in the same classification need to be placed in different districts.
2). No more four-team districts in football, period. There is no excuse to have one-win teams in the playoffs. They only won one game for a reason – they are not playoff-caliber teams. If the UIL insists on having four-team districts, it should be mandatory for them to play double round-robin schedules. This means each team faces each other twice a year – four nondistrict contests and six district games. This has happened before in the 2002-04 alignment as District 12-5A – Longview, Lufkin, Tyler John Tyler and Tyler Lee – played each other twice a year. One of those years, Longview and Lufkin faced each other three times.
I have other tips for the UIL, but I hope this will suffice for now. Otherwise, my family and I will make more jokes about the UIL than La Fogata’s to-go drink cups.