As many who have expressed the sentiment, I feel Jason Garrett is placing his stamp on this team and had a great influence on the coaching hires and draft war room. Notwithstanding that the draft was unJerryesque with its lack of trading and, of course, the OT pick in the first round for the first time, this draft seemed to be Garrett’s because of the motif of hard working, team captain, football-loving athletes now joining the Cowboys franchise in a drove, but also because of subtle hints and changes. In my late night ramblings after the 2 & 3 rd rounds, I discussed the picks, the RB need Garrett assessed as greater than most fans, the usefulness of the picks, and need for good late round finds, and also revealed my skepticism on the outcome of the draft. But seeing Garrett’s plan unfold on the third day leads me to believe there is a clear vision Jason Garrett is following. While the draft netted much greater returns for the offense which seems could be leading to elite status, I believe he and Ryan also understand our defensive talents and will use them better, after already having filled some holes at LB and CB through the draft, and will use the FA market to revive a defense that was bereft coaching and motivation while being sucked into a black hole at FS. I don't think it is coincidence that the positions that still have some needs - OG, DL, Safety - are also the longest list of available FA talent. Garrett has a vision and plan for the entire team and franchise culture and I can’t wait to see where it leads us.
I have been reading a fantastic novel, “The Wise Man’s Fear” authored by Patrick Rothfuss, which is the second in a series which began with “The Name of the Wind.” Incredible novels. In any case, I just read a few pages that are not just eloquent prose with several life lessons hidden amongst the text, but an incredible analogy for the 2011 Dallas Cowboys and Garrett’s vision. The scene takes place in a classroom. Imagine Professor Elodin is Jason Garrett and the students and Narrator/Kvothe are Cowboys fans, the media, critics and even Jerry Jones. It is not too long of a read (excerpts from a couple of novel pages) but I think you’ll enjoy both the tale and the analogy if you have the time.
“Today,” Elodin said brightly, “we will talk about things that cannot be talked about. Specifically, we will discuss why some things cannot be discussed.”
I sighed and set down my pencil. Every day I hoped this class would be the one where Elodin actually taught us something. Every day I brought a hardback and one of my few precious pieces of paper, ready to take advantage of the moment of clarity. Every day some part of me expected Elodin to laugh and admit he’d just been testing our resolve with his endless nonsense.
And every day I was disappointed.
“The majority of important things cannot be said outright,” Elodin said. “They cannot be made explicit. They can only be implied.” He looked out at his handful of students in the otherwise empty lecture hall. “Name something that cannot be explained”…
“There isn’t anything that can’t be explained,” I said firmly. “If something can be understood, it can be explained. A person might not be able to do a good job of explaining it. But that just means it’s hard, not that it’s impossible.”
Elodin held up a finger. “Not hard or impossible. Merely pointless. Some things can only be inferred.” He gave me an infuriating smile. “By the way, your answer should have been ‘music.’”
“Music explains itself,” I said. “It is the road, and it is the map that shows the road. It is both together.”
“But can you explain how music works?” Elodin asked.
“Of course,” I said. Though I wasn’t sure of any such thing.
“Can you explain how music works without using music?"
That brought me up short. While I was trying to think of a response, Elodin turned to Fela.
“Love?” she asked.
Elodin raised an eyebrow as if mildly scandalized by this, then nodded approvingly.
“Hold on a moment,” I said. “We’re not done. I don’t know if I could explain music without using it, but that’s beside the point. That’s not explanation, it translation.”
Elodin’s face lit up. “That’s it exactly!” he said. “Translation. All explicit knowledge is translated knowledge, and all translation is imperfect.”
“So all explicit knowledge, and all translation is imperfect?” I asked. “Tell Master Brandeur geometry is subjective. I’d love to watch that discussion.”
“Not all knowledge,” Elodin admitted. “But most.”
“Prove it,” I said.
“You can’t prove nonexistence,” Uresh interjected in a matter-of-fact way. He sounded exasperated. “Flawed logic.”
I ground my teeth at that. It was flawed logic. I never would have made that mistake if I’d been better rested. “Demonstrate it then,” I said.
“Fine, fine.” Elodin walked over to where Fela sat. “We’ll use Fela’s example.” He took her hand and pulled her to her feet, motioning me to follow.
I came reluctantly to my feet as well and Elodin arranged the two of us so we stood facing each other in profile to the class. “Here we have two lovely young people,” he said. “Their eyes meet across the room.”
Elodin pushed my shoulder and I stumbled forward half a step. “He says hello. She says hello…
“There is something ephemeral in the air,” Elodin said, moving to stand behind Fela… “She is curious”…
Elodin stalked around to stand behind me. “Kvothe looks at her, and for the first time he understands the impulse that first drove men to paint. To sculpt. Him to sing.”
He circled us again…
”There exists between them something tenuous and delicate. They can both feel it. Like static in the air. Faint as frost.”
He looked me full in the face. His dark eyes serious. “Now. What do you do?”…
“Then there is the third path. The path of Kvothe.” …
“You take the shortest route. Simplest is best, you think.” Elodin extended his own hands and made wild grasping motions in Fela’s direction. “So you reach out and you grab this young woman’s breast.”…
Elodin turned his back to her and looked me in the eye.
“Re’lar Kvothe,” he said seriously. “I am trying to wake your sleeping mind to the subtle language the world is whispering. I am trying to seduce you into understanding. I am trying to teach you.” He leaned forward until his face was almost touching mine. “Quit grabbing at my t!t!”