Thursday, January 1, 2015

As Un-American as a Tie...

Perhaps nothing makes you feel more American than a day of watching college football. It matters not whether you know anything about the teams. So far today I really haven't. I know that Baylor has very cool helmets, for example, and that quite a few of my Facebook friends are big fans. I know that the TCU faithful are practically apoplectic with rage at the way they were treated by something called the "selection committee." They probably are feeling vindicated by the ass-whupping that their horn frogs (yes...I said horn frogs) laid on Ole Miss.

I'm an SEC man myself, meaning that I root for the teams from the Southeastern conference. It's a southern thing with me. I first became aware of football when I was an eight year old living in New Orleans during the week and Nicholsville, Alabama on the weekends where my Dad pastored a  church. The first time we were in Alabama on Iron Bowl weekend, my Dad thought that perhaps the "rapture" had taken place and we had somehow missed it! His theological confusion was cleared up by some guy named Billy Ray down at the Esso station, the only townsperson NOT in Tuscaloosa. Football down south isn't like football anywhere else. That's not to say that there aren't very good teams and players in the Midwest and out West, but it's just not the same. The winning percentages of SEC teams over the past ten years or so bear this out as well as the National Championships they have piled up. But, nothing lasts forever, and while they are still awfully good, other conferences have caught up.

Now there's a playoff. Four teams chosen by a committee of wise men who are supposed to be in the know. For anyone upset that their team was left out, it should be pointed out that a camel is, in fact, a horse designed by a committee. But from the looks of it, all four teams are capable of winning it all.
What makes it all so American is our relentless drive to crown a champion, our hatred of ties or anything that even meekly suggests unfairness. This despite a generation of whimpy parents protecting their little ones from the humiliation of losing by not keeping score in T-ball. Note to such parents: the kids ALWAYS keep score and are more resilient that you are!

So, there will be no nil-nil ties this weekend, only winners and losers. Just the way we like it!