It was one of those days.
I got to the golf course to cover the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame's annual golf tourney and my wireless microphone wasn't working. It was 107 degrees outside and I was boiling over inside. I'm thinking, "Why me? Why now?"
For the record, I'm a technical zero. Big surprise, I failed to get the wireless mic working.
My day went downhill from there. The blue and plaid shorts I wore to cover golf made their debut on our 5PM news. It was an outfit only John Daly could appreciate.
It gets worse.
Most of the stuff I got from the golf course never aired at 6 PM because of a technical mixup. What a day!!
How would Paul handle a day like this? It would be all about me.
"They should have better equipment for you," "They should have zoomed in so they couldn't see your shorts." As for that technical mistake, it was the work of those "darn gremlins." It would take Paul only a few minutes to make me feel better about my day. In a "me first" business, Paul was always concerned about the other guy.
It didn't matter - a conversation, an interview or a phone call with Paul, and you felt better about yourself.
In my time with Paul (his last 8 years), one of his favorite sayings was, "I'm in the twilight of a mediocre career."
He was a Hall of Fame broadcaster who didn't desire or require special treatment. A man who could raise the spirits of an entire state with just two words: "Touchdown Arkansas!" The coach at a small Arkansas high school would get the same Paul Eells who interviewed every Razorback head coach from Lou Holtz to Houston Nutt. Ask those coaches - visiting with Paul was good therapy after a tough loss.
Great players make their teammates better. That was Paul. He made Channel 7 a better place to work by just showing up. My day got better when I arrived at work and saw Paul's car in the parking garage.
I felt I had a better sports show when I included Paul. I always felt like I had an unfair advantage on Monday nights, because that was "Paul's Calls" night.
No Hog touchdown was complete until you heard how Paul called it. There may have been better play-by-play guys from 20 to 20, but I've never heard anyone get a team into the endzone better than Paul Eells. If you don't believe me, just listen closely to the "Stoerner to Lucas" TD. It's the perfect touchdown call!!!
Paul would love the Paul Eells Scholarship Tourney. He would have been the perfect tourney host. More than a few kind words and at least one picture with everyone who teed it up. Golfers would leave the tourney feeling like they had a new friend.
What would Paul think about awarding scholarships to young communication majors? He would have called it a "marvelous" idea.
Let's hope the 2013 Paul Eells tourney includes at least one "Oh My" moment.
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