It should go without saying that Rasputin, our staff soothsayer and centuries-old Russian immigrant, has been a bundle of nerves all week. The program-defining importance of the LSU game has him drinking more heavily than normal, and he's mostly been muttering about the time he won a fistfight with Gov. Huey P. Long on the steps of the Louisiana state capitol back in 1929. But, his commitment to the dark art of prognostication remains strong, and this afternoon a yellowed piece of parchment with the following words scrawled on it in fountain pen was slipped under our office door:
It was many a year ago, well before John C. Futrall led the team known as the Cardinal onto the field,
My life's winding path led me to New Orleans for my tortured soul to be healed.
I was a young man, still searching for the truths of this world,
When on a dark, foggy night on Rue Dauphine I met a most bewitching girl.
She emerged from the shadows and out of the mist,
Both beautiful and terrible...I knew not if I'd be killed or kissed.
As she pulled back her hood I realized so true,
This was no ordinary woman, but a priestess of voodoo.
She leaned in close, and with barely a whisper
Uttered the words I'll always recall, as each day I still miss her:
"Young Raz," she said, "This I implore
There will be an epic event in Bobby's season four
I see cats and pigs and even honey badgers
A valley of death that's filled with live souls, but not cadavers.
The clash will be epic, the passion well-spoken
But I fear in the end, you will be heartbroken.
Your Hogs will fight well, and make big plays a'plenty
But in the end the Tigers will have 24, and your boys will have but 20."
Ever since, her words I have carried, and to share them brings shame
But I fear that will be the outcome of the LSU game.
Did Rasputin's mysterious voodoo priestess tell him the truth? Or did she steer him wrong to bring him pain and torment for all these years? Be sure to vote in the poll, and share your thoughts in the comments below.