Houston, TX – In the age of social media, where there is limited time and space to express thoughts and ideas, a whole new subset of acronyms and abbreviations dominates the modern conversation. With well over 3.8 billion people worldwide using social media, this opens the door to a significant number of new and innovative acronyms. In addition to newer acronyms, social media can amplify older ones and give them greater prominence. One such acronym is YOLO, or “You Only Live Once.”
Depending on what source you use, YOLO entered into the lexicon as early as the early to mid-1990s. Some would say that YOLO is a natural extension of the classic “carpe diem” or other older sentiments about living for today and seizing the opportunities of the now, future considerations be damned. Some felt that it peaked with Drake’s usage of it in a 2011 album. Its impact was such that in 2016, Oxford added YOLO to the official English Language Dictionary.
However, this seemingly passé acronym is roaring back into fashion thanks to one man: Interim Head Coach for the Houston Texans Romeo Crennel. The veteran defensive coordinator and former head coach for two NFL teams now helms the 2020 Houston Texans. Since taking over after the purging of that other guy, Romeo Crennel, sometimes known as RAC (to date, there is no argument about his abbreviation), has made his mark with the team. While the squad has managed one next-to-last-place finish and one second place finish during his term, it is some of his in-game decisions that have RAC as the new face of the “YOLO” movement.
“Hey, I may not be a spring chicken, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t go for broke and live.” noted Coach Crennel, as we spoke to him while at his favorite casino. “Why does everyone think that when you get older, you must be more cautious and conservative? That reeks of ageism, don’t you think?” Before this reporter could respond, Crennel barked out to the roulette table, “100 chips and Keke Coutee’s contract on Green 0!”
When we got back to the interview, Crennel was asked about his current philosophy, especially when it came to the last game. “Look, I know people must have been shocked by some of the in-game decisions, but they shouldn’t be. Ever since I’ve been with the Texans [hired as defensive coordinator in 2014], I’ve been my own man. I heard there was a lot of issues with the previous coach, whatever his name was, perhaps being too mircomanagey with his assistants, but he didn’t give me too many issues. He let me run the defense and let me do my own thing. Was a little surprised at first, but someone told me that he heard about my new MMA hobby. After my victory in Lake Charles with my new ‘Stare-Down Head-Butt’ over Chuck Liddell in a Legends fight, the head coach stayed away. I didn’t mind.”
“He is crazy!!!” exclaimed Justin Reid. “I mean, dude’s a grandpa. I was surprised that he didn’t actually invent the 3-4 defense. Still, seeing him since he took over as head coach…wow! Some of the 4th down calls caught us off-guard, but at least we made those. Didn’t think the old man could be so aggressive. It is a degree of calculated aggression. The other guy, I had no idea what his thought process was. Still have nightmares about that playoff game. Yeah, I know that I didn’t get it done on the fake, but to be honest, why couldn’t we do that on the other side of the field? A kick on 4th and inches versus a fake on 4th and 4?”
“Anyway, it feels different now. Yeah, Coach [Crennel] is crazy, but “crazy like a fox’ style. Also, don’t try to get into a dance-off with him. Lonnie Johnson challenged him, saying he had the better footwork. [Crennel] made him look so stupid, I was surprised that Lonnie even could walk on the field last week.”
(As if Lonnie Johnson ever had a chance...)
When told of this anecdote, Crennel chuckled. “Well, I know I may look old, and perhaps not so svelte, but no one has ever won a dance-off against me. No one.” At this point we had moved to the blackjack table. At the $500 table, the current hand showed Crennel with a 17, and the dealer face-up card showed a 7.
“Hit me!” Crennel bellowed with a big grin. The dealer expressed shock “Are…are you sure, sir? You know I probably just have a 17, right?”
Crennel’s smile faltered slightly, replaced by a questioning glower. “What was that? You want to repeat yourself?”
The dealer’s face, now as white as death, could only squeak, “No, no sir. I just don’t…I just don’t see people hit on 17, sir.”
Crennel’s glower quickly faded into a smile. “It’s okay, son. Yes, I know the strategy and rule, but when I play, I play to win. We tie, I get nothing. So, go ahead and hit me.” The dealer’s hand, shaking uncontrollably, flips a 3, giving Crennel a 20.
Crennel smiled. “Looking good. A near kill shot. Was looking for a ‘4’, but I like my chances for winning here.”
The dealer then flips over his face-down card, showing a 9. Crennel appeared impassive but seemed happy being in a dominant position. Holding a 16, the dealer had to take another card. The dealer calmly flipped over another card, revealing a 5, giving him a ‘21’ and winning the hand.
Crennel seemed nonchalant about the last-second turn of events. “I suppose you think this is a metaphor or something for the last game in Tennessee? Well, think what you want. If you want to win, you take the risks. The safe play might turn out okay, but it is not always a surefire way to win. Remember, YOLO.”
There was a slight ruckus when a man sitting at the penny slots looked over and screamed at Crennel, “Are you crazy? You hit on a 17? The rules say you stand on 17!!! This card here says you stand there!!! You can’t be that stup…” The man, who bore a striking resemblance to a CBS color analyst, didn’t get the chance to finish the statement, as Crennel gave a live demonstration of the “Stare Down Head-Butt.” While the man’s body crashed through two slot machines, no one challenged Crennel between all the money spilling out and the security personnel giving him a wide berth.
Crennel then looked down at his phone. “Oh, sorry to cut this short, but have to go. Got a sky-diving session in a couple of hours. Practicing for my entrance next Sunday for the Packers game. Really looking forward to it.”
As the 2020 season moves forward, it is highly likely that we will see more aggressive in game actions. It is also likely that future critics of Crennel will face the fate of Chuck Liddell, Lonnie Johnson, and whoever that pseudo-man was in the casino. Should be a fun rest of the “YOLO” season.