Thank God…it’s finally here
Posted by Euroranger on September 6, 2009
When you were a kid and were raised anywhere in the northern half of the globe (and this quite possibly holds true as well for large swaths of the southern half but I haven’t been there so I wouldn’t know) and were anything like me, there were only two dates on the calendar against which you measured all others. Much like what most of civilized man does with that handy “A.D.” and “B.C.” gimmick (and for those who insist on using the politically correct secularized “B.C.E.” here’s one you can go figure out: “E.A.B.O.D.”) children the world over reckon the passage of time by describing the amount of elapsed time from set waypoints. In the case of children that tends to be “Christmas” and “Birthday”. In other words, two auspicious days wherein they are pretty much allowed to do whatever they want while others shower them with gifts.
Well, yesterday was the first Saturday of college football…and such is regarded on my mental man calendar much higher than birthdays and Christmas are now. Scientists haven’t yet figured out why this occurs as part of the aging process…but they haven’t figured out how to cure cancer or how to isolate and remove the organ responsible for “snot” so what do they know? Point is, it’s College Football Season and if you’re a southern man, living in The South, you are expected to identify yourself by the following common basic means:
- name (hyphenated, last)
- gender (sometimes the first bullet point doesn’t make this obvious)
- favorite Nascar driver
- make of truck you drive
- brand of beer you drink
- college football team you follow
You’ll notice that I didn’t include “where you live” as a possible identifier. This is useless because one the most common means of shelter in The South is a narrow, elongated box on wheels known as a “mobile home”. They’re not called “mobile” because of the wheels. Indeed, once a mobile home is located in the trailer park of choice (depending on the terms of the court order) it is virtually cemented there as a permanent addition to the landscape. Adorning such an edifice with Christmas lights also meets a similar, permanent fate. Science has no explanation for this.
They’re called “mobile”, however, because they exhibit a peculiar motion-based quality in the presence of a meteorological phenomenon known as a “tornado”…a subject science seems to know more about but which is more properly ascribed to the whims of a vengeful deity like God…or Jim Cantore.
Oh, protip from The South: if Jim Cantore and the Weather Channel van pulls up in front of your house and he hops out and starts talking to the camera, even if it’s a bright, cloudless, sunny day…you’re pretty much fucked. Take it to the bank, man: yer house is fixing to “relocate”. God you can doubt…but don’t question the power of Jim Cantore.
Anyhow, they call them “mobile” because before a storm they’re here and after a storm, well, they’re not. They don’t exactly “move” as in “mobile” they more…well…explode and scatter their contents (inclusive of people, empty beer cans and Dale Earnhardt memorabilia) from here to Mobile, Alabama. So they call them “mobile homes” in a clever marketing ruse because calling them “likely-to-disintegrate-in-case-of-a-strong-storm homes” would, apparently, make them even less desirable to live in than they are now. Southerners are shrewd businessmen like that.
Besides, in The South we can discern your current address or, more accurately, your place of birth by what college football team you root for. This is convenient as it saves a whole lot of time trying to determine who you can befriend and who you can safely ignore. Why bother with conversation, getting to know someone, spend time in their company and discover interesting and fascinating things about them when all you need to do is check out which stickers they have on the back window of their truck? As an added bonus, to see whether they have the potential to be merely a passing acquaintance or can be elevated to “good ole boy” you get to confirm the make/model of their truck, their favorite Nascar driver and which brand of beer they drink (from the empties in the truck bed)…all by viewing their means of personal conveyance from the rear. Much like a dog makes friends with another dog, you can check out their compatibility by sniffing around their back ends. It’s like the redneck version of eHarmony. Southerners are fiendishly clever like that.
Anyway, for instance, if you have an Auburn sticker on the back of your Ford, you’re almost certainly from Alabama and are likely into self-inflicted pain. I’d mention what the Auburn team is called…but even Auburn fans don’t know. It’s either a Tiger or a War Eagle. Mascots are supposed to be fear-inducing avatars designed to cause your opponents to pause in reflective contemplation of whether they really wish to engage in manly contests of derring-do with you. The Tigers option I understand but nobody believes because there are no Tigers in eastern Alabama. And “War Eagle” is just silly. An eagle is suitably fierce looking and can be especially terror-inducing if you happen to be a small rodent. But to make it fearsome to man you need to tack “war” on the front of it? Why not have simply called themselves the “War Tigers”? I can’t seem to gin up enough fear of a bird I can kill with a bb gun…even if said bird is a member of some imaginary bird nation who’s declared war on us because of the failure of our diplomatic efforts with BirdLandia. You’d think Hillary could have handled that one better…
As another example, if you have a picture of an elephant rampaging through a red capital “A” you also are likely from Alabama but are a fan of The University of Alabama football team who call themselves the “Alabama Elephants”. Ha-ha, no I kid, they call themselves the Crimson Tide. Why do they choose to represent a “Crimson Tide” with the picture of a mad, rampaging elephant? Well, most fans of the University of Alabama are married. This is due to the habit of most Alabamans getting married young (around age 12 or so)…so by the time they’re old enough to legally drink and congregate in large drunken masses (notice I did use the word “legally” there) most have been married for some time…and their wives have attained a specific mass such that they have their own gravitational pull. In other words, they’re large enough to have shit orbiting them. Also by that time, the spouses of these large land-bound females have been associated most intimately with their wives’…um…monthly visitor. This leads to their familiarity with raging, homicidal, exceptionally large beasts…and a “crimson tide”. The two come together naturally in the mind…especially when that mind is polluted with a case of Natural Light beer…at least to a ‘Bama fan’s mind anyway.
By final example, if you have a picture of a big blue “M” on the back of your Toyota Prius, you’re almost certainly a Michigan fan. You’re also probably a damnYankee, have likely shaved some part of your body other than your face at least once, and may consider taking your wife’s last name when you get married…if you’re not already gay. You don’t have a hyphenated first name (you may have a hyphenated last name however), you have an open mind to gender identity, you follow tennis (not Nascar), you drive a Prius (prolly because the truck salesman couldn’t stop laughing long enough to tell you he couldn’t sell you a Chevy truck) and you have a favorite variety of wine whose identifier isn’t also a color.
I can wax poetic about teams and fans in places other than Michigan and Alabama but people in those other places tend to be able to read and have access to the internet and so, I decline to do so. Suffice to say that I am a fan of college football and very much enjoy watching it on Saturday afternoons. Because of my geographic location, the teams I root for are local and, despite the bizarre, misguided ramblings of fans in other parts of the nation, are the best football teams in the country, bar none. Essentially, if the college football national championship doesn’t pass through the team representing the SEC, it’s really just a sham designed to make the rest of the nation feel better about their inadequacy on the gridiron. And yesterday I got to witness opening day examples of why it’s good to be a football fan from The South:
- Florida won handily as they should have but didn’t cover the spread. This is good however because they won by FIFTY NINE FREAKIN’ POINTS but didn’t beat the spread. That means that lots of people thought the Gators should have won by more than 59 points. Simply awesome.
- Alabama beat Virginia Tech (another school from The South) in a great back and forth game
- LSU won…despite looking completely lost and despite the fact that the University of Washington obviously swapped their team out with some competent school’s team AND likely sacrificed virgins to some unholy deity in order to not suck…and yet they STILL lost
Oklahoma lost to BYU. Yes, the papers are all saying it’s because their star QB got hurt in the second quarter and had to sit out. But still…all the hype last year for that program…and they arrive in the National Championship Game…and proceeded to be the $2 ho to Florida’s sailor on shore leave. All the smack talk, all the Big 12 is the best conference bullcrap. It wasn’t enough that Florida stamped “PAID” on that account. It is now enough that BYU beat them yesterday. No more smack talk from Sooner Nation this year…or at least I can dream.
- Notre Dame won in a walk over Nevada at home. This is a good thing because nothing is better than to see Fighting Irish fan’s hopes get crushed…but you have to give him hopes to begin with so you can crush them later. As God is my witness, I didn’t even know that Nevada had a “University of” and that they had a football team. I wonder if anyone has checked yet to see if that wasn’t a boarding school for blind, spinal injury victims.
- Ohio State nearly lost to Navy….hahahahahahahahahahahahahaaaa!!! NAVY? Really? LOL! And what’s with their coach wearing that damned sweater vest? It’s freaking 5 whole days removed from August! You’re wearing a short sleeved NASA nerd shirt but you put a sweater vest on over it? You know the only other place on television you see a sweater vest? The next time you see an Imodium AD commercial…you know, the product designed to address explosive diarrhea?…look at the pathetic, stereotyped dude they have who runs to public restrooms, desperately clenching his ass-cheeks together in an apparent bid to outrace an involuntary geysering shitstorm in his double-knit polyester slacks. Guess what he is ALWAYS wearing. You got it: a sweater vest. Actually, now that I think on it, the mental association between the imploding Buckeyes and an exploding browneye linked by the sweater vest is entirely appropo.
Anyway, I did manage to watch some of the games on the friend’s drive-in-movie-sized high def projection TV. I sandwiched early games and late games around the trip to my visiting college buddy and a forced pilgrimage to the American Girl store. It was like “good…gawdawfully awful…good again” for the day and it made me appreciate my “man time” all the more.
I don’t know what people in the north do on Saturdays. Being that they’re damnyankees I normally don’t much care…but they have schools of higher learning up there and those schools keep staffing football teams with some local talent and specimens of Southern Football Primacy either kidnapped or drugged and convinced to play up there…so, for a few months at least, television is worth watching for a few hours, one day a week. And this is a good thing.
Thank God…even if he does hate me the other 6 days of the week.
My name is Euroranger and I approved this message.