Traditions matter, especially in sports.
Friday nights in the fall should be reserved for high school football, Saturdays for college football and Sundays for the NFL.
Opening Day should be celebrated on the first Monday in April with a noon game in Cincinnati and the Clydesdales circling the field in Busch Stadium later that afternoon. A Sunday night game never should qualify as Opening Day.
Bowl games need to be played Jan. 1, not 17 days earlier. A bowl game in mid-December isn't a bowl game.
Missouri should play Kansas in basketball and football every year. That's what rivals do.
Thanksgiving night should be spent in Blue Devil Gym with a turkey hangover. When you grow up in Quincy, that's what you do.
The week between Christmas and New Year's should be spent at a high school basketball tournament. That's what basketball junkies do.
Traditions matter, even if yours are different than mine.
When it's time to hang Christmas decorations or wrap Christmas gifts, holiday music has to be playing in the background. Bing Crosby is always a good choice. Alabama's Christmas album is my personal favorite.
A steaming cup of hot chocolate is mandatory when you drive around town looking at Christmas lights. Dropping marshmallows in there is entirely up to you.
After everyone else has gone to bed, Christmas Eve is the perfect time to wrap gifts. You can't open them early if they aren't wrapped.
You don't give a gift that requires batteries unless you've bought the batteries, too.
No gifts can be opened before checking your stockings first. Every stocking should have an orange in the toe.
It doesn't matter if you're perplexed or disappointed by a gift. You show appreciation and thanks. It's the act of giving that counts above all else.
Traditions matter, even ones open to debate.
Popcorn, peanuts and nachos are the concession stand staples at a baseball game. Throw in a hot dog, and you have a grand slam. Sushi isn't baseball food. It's bait.
The first choice of restaurants when you visit Columbia, Mo., is Shakespeare's Pizza. So is the second choice. And the third. You get the idea.
The first choice of restaurants when you visit Kansas City is Gates BBQ. Then Arthur Bryant's. Then Oklahoma Joes. Then any other quality BBQ spot.
You put butter or honey on biscuits fresh from the oven. Jelly will do in a pinch, too.
Traditions matter, at least to a traditionalist like me.
That's why Christmas will be spent with family.
There is no tradition I enjoy more.