Thursday, August 19, 2010

Three in 40 years

I rode down to Lubbock on Thursday with Ken Pirtle, who retired in 2008 as chairman of the visual arts department at Amarillo College. Ken, a 1970 Texas Tech graduate, had been at AC for 33 years.

Ken was making the final of eight deliveries of his football mosaics, which will adorn the east concourse of Jones AT&T Stadium. Ken won the bid for the project in late May.

There were a ton of interesting things Ken told me, like it takes 300 hours per mosaic to complete, and that 416,000 tiles comprise the eight mosaics.

But the one that got to me was he has missed only three home Tech football games since the late 1960s. In other words, three in just more than four decades. And it's not like he lives in the same city. There's a bit of an effort to get there. He said he's watched the Red Raiders in snow, heat and with a 102-degree temperature.

His season tickets are in Section 3 on the west side.

One game he missed was his grandfather's funeral in Arizona. The other two involved soem kind of city championship game that his son, Jeff, was involved in.

"I've seen some great wins," he said, "and tough losses."

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