Saturday, September 3, 2011

Up and At 'Em....

It's College Football Opening Day!

Now before you get the idea that I'm a football or sports fanatic, let me assure you I am not.  As little as 4 years ago I barely took notice of sports at all.  My interests in athletics was never in the mainstream. About the only competitions that would stop me while channel-surfing were gymnastics, ice skating, formula and drag racing, and x-games. I am a devout fan of horse racing. And I'm all-in for the Olympics. But having merged my life with a sports lover and football fanatic, it was inevitable that I would, indeed, at least take notice of the mainstream team sports. Observation, even though usually peering over my laptop while trying to do schoolwork, soon led to enthusiasm. So I will now say that I am a Sports Enthusiast. This means, to me, that I enjoy the games of a select few teams that I've become attached to, and will even get rabidly enthusiastic about them. I do not even try to keep on top of all the stats and comings & goings of other teams - if they're not currently opposing "my" teams, they pretty much don't exist to me. Let's be real here, there's only so much data my brain cell can juggle.

My first enthusiasm was for baseball. Specifically, the Texas Rangers. The first game I ever went to was one of theirs, and I look forward to going as often as we are able to.  They really are a fun, great team. They still play the game with enthusiasm and playfulness, none of the guys have a "one-man-show" attitude, and they love their fans. When they made it to the World Series last year, we were in hog heaven! And ask any Rangers fan, the fact that they beat the Yankees in the ALCS was every bit as satisfying as winning the World Series would have been. The Yankees being the over-hyped douchebags of MLB.

Football, specifically NFL games, are sort of a love-hate thing with me. In our home, it's all about the Cowboys. And I'm sure that devotion was well-earned in the past. However, I was not an enthusiast in the glorified past, and there's not been a lot of glory in my few years of observation, so I have not yet jumped on the die-hard Cowboys fan bandwagon. I watch. I hope. I cheer, applaud, sit on the edge of my seat, and curse (at them and for them). I even started a tradition of making chicken wings for game day, for crying out loud! But I can not completely worship their star just because of their team name and history. For the most part, there are way too many all-about-me players who think they are THE superstar while there is still far too little even-remotely-professional performance happening. Last year they behaved like a bunch of over-paid prima donnas. So before this blog becomes all about them (my ire can become extremely well-focused), I will say that this season has not truly started yet, and I will keep an open mind with as little pre-judgment as possible.

This blog is about today. And today, chickens, is opening day of College Football. And today is when I get to have a bit of Fun-With-Sports in my house. You see, Himself is, absolutely IS, a die hard Texas Longhorns fan. To the core, to the blood, to the bone. Burnt orange through and through. I'm surprised he's not up and watching the damn new Longhorn Network already! I, however, am of a somewhat different bent here. And anytime my bent is different, you can bet my competitive, ornery, bratty nature will want to have some fun.

You see, heretofore I've only been what can best be described as an appreciator of the passion of others. Any affiliation tendencies I had were somewhat relative to the peoples in my life. And both of my affiliation tendencies are diametrically opposed to those of a Longhorn fan. (I can't even write this paragraph without wicked cackling in my head!) Before entering this life-merge I was an enthusiast of  the Texas A&M Aggies, and Alabama's Crimson Tide. Maniacal laughing at this point is expected.

The Aggies seeped into my blood because I lived for 15 years in a small town near College Station, where everything, everywhere is Aggies. No matter that they've been by no means the even almost-best of their division, Aggie fan-dom is a force unlike any other. I have lived amongst these people, worked with them and for them, count some of them as my dearest friends; and they are, hands-down, some of the truly best Good People I believe you'll ever find in the world. So it was absolutely impossible to not develop an affinity to their institution, and an inherent enthusiasm for their sports. This has been a source of amusement to Himself, looking down his Longhorn nose at Aggies and all their mania.

Alabama's Crimson Tide - that's a genetic thing. My father was from Alabama, and for whatever reason that I have yet to truly understand, I've always felt that I am more 'from there' than Texas. My father was a fan of the Tide. Probably that alone was enough to make me a fan. I'm a Daddy's Girl - will never try to deny it. If he said something was good, then it was. Period. So I've always been prejudiced to them whenever they were noted in my peripheral vision. But the thing is, Alabama really IS good. So good, in fact, that in 2009 they went to head-to-head (as No.1) with Texas (No.2) in the BCS national title game. That's when things got a little more interesting in our house. Lines had to be drawn. Sides had to be chosen. Colors had to be worn.

Mine were crimson and white. Alabama won, 37 - 21.

So began the fun rivalry in our home. Last year neither of our big teams did great. In the final BCS standings for 2010, Alabama was 16th, Texas A&M was 17th, and Texas wasn't even in the Top 25. (

Today, the AP College Football Preseason Poll has Alabama at No. 2 (behind Oklahoma. yuck.) and Texas A&M at No. 8. Texas isn't even in the Top 25. ( Bless their hearts.

So this morning I am up and at 'em! In full-on Instigator Mode. I've been taunting on Facebook (, Tweet'ing my stance (, and have now even blogged football, for crying out loud! I can't wait for Himself to get up and see what I've been up to! (How the hell does he sleep this late anyway?!)  I've been having so much fun that I've barely had one cup of coffee, and haven't even eaten yet!

So if you'll excuse me, there is a gloriously crimson and white stadium on TV (Alabama's already scored 13 to whoever's nothing yet in the first 7 minutes!) and I need to get my Tide shirt on. I sure hope I don't make too much noise getting it out of the closet and wake anyone....