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March Madness pools give some Monday blues

PHOENIX -- That's it. It's over. After a weekend of March Madness, your bracket is a mess.

Now, it's Monday and you have to face all the bragging by your coworkers who are doing great in the pool. How are you going to handle it?

"If, at this point, you're spent, you're done, maybe you're better off just putting some blinders on, focusing back on your work, and channeling your energy that way," said Tom LaVecchian.

If you're doing great in your pool, LaVecchian said it's fine to gloat...a little.

"But the key is to always remain professional," he said. "Even if you win the pool, it's not life-changing money, so you've got to kind of get over that. Just get back to business and back to work as usual to foster a high-performing team."

Valley sports psychologist Dr. Ellen Williams said if you're doing well in the office pool, you might want to be careful about how you act at work today.

"If your boss is in the pool, gloating is probably not a good idea," she said. "Congratulating him or her that their team did will probably go much farther for you than the $20 bucks would have. If you're doing poorly, my thought is that it's just a game. If that's the worst thing that happens to you on a Monday, you're going pretty well."

Williams said if you've already lost $10 in the pool, look at this way: You've only lost a couple of lattes.

She joked that if you lost and still can't face your coworkers, "you can always call in sick today, and just stay home and watch more basketball!"

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About the Author


Years with the company: I started on January 2, 2006.

Education: I was born in San Antonio, Texas, but we moved to Phoenix when I was one-year-old in 1957. I grew up here and graduated from Alhambra High School and attended Phoenix College.

Family: I am married to my wife Rene', who is a librarian in the Washington school district. During free time, I may be found playing basketball in the driveway with my son, Devin. He's also keeping me busy with school, Little League, and playing in chess tournaments around the Valley.

Favorite food: Lots of favorite food, but our favorite restaurant is Fajitas.

Favorite spot in Arizona: The Little America Hotel in Flagstaff.

Favorite news memory: We have to go back to October 15, 1979. I was a country music air personality at KROP Radio in Brawley, California, when we had a 6.7 earthquake. Thankfully, there were no deaths and only minor injuries, but the entire community was pretty freaked out and listening to the station on their transistor radios. I would not want to go through an earthquake again, but it sure was a great night to work in radio and see how it can make a difference in people's lives.

First job: Working as a stringer for 'The Arizona Republic' at high school football games. My first real job was flipping burgers at the old Sandy's Hamburgers at 51st Avenue and Indian School Road. My first radio job was as announcer at KALJ radio in Yuma in 1977.

First concert: Doug Oldham gospel concert in the 1970s at the old East High School in Phoenix.

Favorite sports team: Phoenix Roadrunners minor league hockey. My dad took me to a game when I was in grade school, and I was hooked. I wanted to be a radio hockey play-by-play man. I used to take my cassette recorder and sit up in the rafters of the Coliseum and do play-by-play. It was great later in life to also take my son to Roadrunners games. Too bad the team just folded, I'll miss them. (Going to the Coyotes is fun, but they're not "my" team.)

Outside interests: My family and I are active in our church - Northern Hills Community Church in Phoenix. We enjoy going to movies, sporting events, and like to vacation at the Beach Cottages in the Pacific Beach area of San Diego. And I love to play catch, basketball, football with my son.

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