“I’ve done a bit of smugglin’, I’ve run my share of grass. I made enough money to buy Miami but I pissed it away so fast.  Never meant to last, never meant to last.” – Jimmy Buffett, “A Pirate Looks at 40.”


I’m 40 years old today and, I think, any man who reaches such a milestone, takes a look around. Hell, Ferris Bueller told me to 18 years ago.  I’m just getting around to it now.  Admittedly, I’ve made just about every mistake a man can make in his first 40 years.  All part of the learning process.  It’s hard for me to reflect and not miss my Mom.  It’s impossible for me to do so and not miss my Dad.  To quote Billy Crystal, “when your parents are gone, you’re not quite tethered to the Earth in the same way.”   If life has taught me nothing else by now, it’s ‘life is too short.’  I try not to get angry anymore.  I try (still fail) to drink a little less.  I’m hoping to eat better.  I spend every available moment with my amazing daughters which leads me to the one thing I did right over the last 40 years:  I married the right woman.  Marrying the right person washes away a great deal of blemish.  In my case, it can legitimize your existence. I’ve had to make decisions for myself since a very young age and winged it for a large portion of those 40 years.  Because of that, I’ve stumbled often but I no longer fall.  She is always there to catch me.  I wouldn’t trade the family we built and the life we have for anyone’s.  We’re beach bums.  We’re all rabid Eagles fans.  We’ve got great friends and family around us every day so as this pirate stops and looks around at 40, I gotta say, things are damned good.  Looking forward to a fun weekend with the Eagles and Giants capping it off down at the Linc.


Here are a few things you should be watching 40 in this Week 6 of the 2014 NFL season…


Have to admit, I keep an eye on the Cleveland Browns now. Gotta love what Brian Hoyer is doing with a cast of no-names and with a highly conceivable victory at home against the Steelers, the Browns could rise to second place in the AFC North.


You can’t stop Mike Glennon!! Head coach Lovie Smith gives Glennon the nod again and he should…for the rest of the year.  Tampa Bay is a much better team with him.  They’ve got big wideouts with Vincent Jackson and the rookie, Mike Evans.  Tampa welcomes Baltimore on Sunday.


Will Tony Sparano make a difference? The Oakland Raiders, who have become nothing more than a consistent doormat for the rest of the league, take on the surging San Diego SuperChargers in Sparano’s first game as interim head coach.


A true litmus test for the Dallas Cowboys.  The DeMarco Murrays travel to Seattle on Sunday with the Seahawks on a short week and some people thinking the much improved Dallas offensive line and running game could be poised to shock the world.


How will the Bengals react after getting punched in the mouth by the Patriots? Cincy returns home to the place they place well, licking their wounds, to take on the Carolina Panthers.


Philadelphia versus New York. The Giants enter the Linc for Sunday night football and as an Eagles fan, I’ve got a lot of concerns.  I need to see the quarterback settle down this week.  I need to see the running back hit the hole, and I need to see the defense make consistent stops.  It’s a lot to ask for but I think they’re going to play well against a Giants team that, seemingly, is getting better every week.  Except they still have this guy at quarterback…

This guy has 2 rings. This. Guy.
This guy has 2 rings. This. Guy.


I’m back on WIP on the Thursday night / Friday morning overnight show with the vacationed and rested Big Daddy Graham on Sportsradio 94 WIP in Philadelphia from 2am to 5:30am getting your Football Friday started early!


Did you check out this week’s “Magnificent Bastards” podcast with me and Brian Startare on Wildfire radio?  You can download the weekly podcasts at tmbwildfire.podbean.com  This week, Jack McCaffery of the DelCo Daily Times joined us to talk football and Sam Chardidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer checked in to give his thoughts on the passing of Philly legend, Bill Campbell.  We are live every Tuesday at 5:45pm on Wildfireradio.com


Check back here on Monday for my NFL Notes & Musings column as I review the NFL’s Week 6 weekend action!


Follow me on Twitter:  @darrendegaetano  @MBWildfire


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Darren DeGaetano
A lifelong buddy of Voodoo Brown's, Darren was born in Philadelphia and resides with his family in South Jersey. His resume includes ten years producing sports radio in Philadelphia and five years as a writer, director and producer for NFL Films. His weekly NFL NOTES & MUSINGS column provides his thoughts, anecdotes and eye opening statistics that happened over the previous weekend. Additionally, every Friday, Darren offers his "What 2 Watch 4" column to set you up for the coming weekend football action. Darren's best known annual piece features his Darrentees, a collection of NFL bold and not so bold predictions for the season at hand. Finally, Darren is a full time NFL Insider for Philadelphia's Sportsradio 94.1 WIP and co-hosts the Thursday night / Friday morning overnight show with Big Daddy Graham and can be heard on the official Philadelphia Eagles post-game show. He also likes red wine. Lots and lots of red wine.


  1. I have known Maria for a long time now…prior to your marriage and beautiful daughters. I have walked your shoes with losing a parent and a sibling, grew up in the Juniata section of Philly and winged my way through life as well. Your piece was nicely written and your correct. You have a wonderful wife and she a good women. Happy Birthday, now prepare for the hair that will be growing out of your ears and aches in spots you have forgotten about. I also have a hard time with my beers. Don’t sweat it. Life is short…

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