As the lone Kentucky outpost of the Every Day Should Be Saturday empire, I have a limited beat to cover: horse racing, bourbon tourism and basketball screaming. Today, however, I'm pleased to share that my living situation has afforded us a special interview opportunity. In advance of a weekend-long, four-show concert stand at the University of Louisville's KFC Yum! Center, country music superstar and noted college football fan Garth Brooks has agreed to sit with us for a chat.
ACTIONCOOKBOOK: Thanks so much for agreeing to this. We're really happy to get this opportunity to talk to you about your life, your work, and your love of college football. As many of our readers may already be aware, you're from Oklahoma, and attended Oklahoma State. The Cowboys had a strong start to the season last year, riding a 10-0 streak to the fringe of playoff contention, before fading and losing their last three games, including a Sugar Bowl blowout at the hands of Ole Miss. It was certainly a disappointing coda, but still a very positive turnaround after a 7-6 season the year prior. Many experts have included OSU in their preseason rankings for the 2016 season. Do you think Mike Gundy's going to have your 'boys on a continued upward track?
CHRIS GAINES: Crikey, mate, wot's all this earbashin' about cowboys now?
ACB: Wait what
GAINES: Bloody mental, innit? Me dad used to wrangle jumbucks in the Never-Never, he did, proper cowboy 'e was.
ACB: who did what in the where now
GAINES: The Never-Never!
ACB: [blank state]
GAINES: The bush!
ACB: [cocks head]
GAINES: The bunyip! The Great Australian Fuck-All!
ACB: [on the verge of tears]
GAINES: The Outback, mate! Me home in Australia!
ACB: are you okay, Garth
GAINES: Oi, 'o's this bludger, Garth, mate? Name's Gaines, Chris Gaines, Austroilia's biggest rock star! Star of the blockbuster biopic The Lamb!
ACB: wh-why are you doing this
GAINES: I'll be stuffed, innit? Oi've been flat out like a lizard drinkin', pissed on plonk, gone troppo but right she'll be!
ACB: okay you're clearly just reading from an internet list of Australian slang right now
GAINES: Oi, take a squizz at this stickybeak!
ACB: Please, listen to me. You're from Oklahoma. Your name is Garth. You're a very popular musician in your own right. We all made some questionable decisions in the late 1990s, but we've forgiven you. You just need to be able to forgive yourself. You don't need to do this. You don't need to have an Australian soft-rock alter ego.
GAINES: [his Australian accent wavering into sort of a cockney thing now] Oi'm dark and brooding! Rugby! Foster's! The Queen! Lord of the Rings!
ACB: Hey now, that last one was New Zealand
GAINES: Oi'm on a world tour for me new album, Didgeridoo of Me Heart!
ACB: you're really not, though
GAINES: Sure's am, mate, sure's as me Prime Minister is Malcolm Turnbull!
ACB: I really wouldn't know if that's true or not to be honest. Anyways, I promised Spencer and Ryan that I was going to have a real interview with you about your love of college football, and they're going to be expecting it. I could get fired for this. Can we discuss it just a little bit?
GAINES: Brad Wing!
ACB: O-okay! Hey, that's a start! He played college football! Now, let's talk about your alma mater. The Cowboys started the season 10-0, and peaked at #5 in the rankings, with a great chance to move into the top 4 if they won out. Of course, that chance slipped away after they lost to Bayl-
GAINES: [suddenly singing] What is this feeling / I've never known before / That I should touch you / Swearing to surrender ever more / That's what I came here for
ACB: [raising voice] - LOST TO BAYLOR, WHICH LEFT THEM STILL IN GOOD POSITION TO WIN THE BIG 12, IF THEY WERE ABLE TO WIN BEDLA-
GAINES: [pulling out microphone] HEAVEN KNOWS I'M HEAD OVER HEELS AND IT SHOWS
ACB: [rolls up interview notes, uses them like a little megaphone] NOW, THEY STILL MADE THE SUGAR BOWL AND COULD'VE ENDED THE SEASON ON A REALLY GREAT NOTE, WITH THEIR FIRST WIN IN THAT GAME IN SEVENTY YEARS, BUT
GAINES: [setting off a bunch of the pyrotechnics he was supposed to use at the concert later] WHEN YOU'RE AROUND BABY I HAVE FOUND I GET LOST IN A WONDERFUL DAAAAAAZE, LOST IN YOUR WONDERFUL WAYS
ACB: [brushing confetti off jacket] You can't do this to yourself. Oklahoma State keeps getting to the cusp of a title game and finding dramatic ways to fall flat, but you can't run from reality. Lots of people would love for their teams to go 10-3. Look at the bright side! You beat Texas in Austin! Sure, they're down, but back in 1999 when you were doing this you'd have been thrilled to do that! You've only beaten them six times ever! Heck, some of us root for teams that went 7-6 and got embarrassed by a Mountain West team, but you don't see me growing out my bangs again. You have to be who you are.
GAINES: [softly] when you're around... baby I have found... I get lost in you
ACB: [hugging him] It's not your fault, Garth. It's not your fault.