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Football is Here - How Will You Survive?

Be like Dirk.
Be like Dirk.

I spent the Wyoming game seated between a guy who sounded like Eddie Deezen and a woman who was almost surely Jean Stapleton. How these two came to be Texas fans, let alone alumn- /a/us/um/oids, remains a mystery. But the answer might involve a now-defunction foreign exchange program. I was listening to them, because I had no choice, loudly and rustbeltishly agreeing that Ash was a mistake and they should put in McCoy. Everything confirmed their view, even when Wyoming had the ball. A Martian college football fan might easily have assumed they were discussing who should be in at free safety, so thoroughly unmoored from any metrics or reason was their analysis.

For four quarters.

Had I not managed to actually float my brain in its pan on a tide of free beer, I would be writing this from prison, awaiting my trial for double homicide, aggravated cannibalism, public ululation, flinging giblets at a law-enforcement officer, and violating a Yankee without a direct order from a superior officer. I drank so much rye beer, I'm pretty sure my eyes turned brown. I was sweating hops. Women in bikinis kept popping out of the sand to sell me to college students in Ohio. Jonathan Goldsmith gave me a disapproving look. I think there was a dog.

And I enjoyed the heck out of that game, quacking Yankees notwithstanding.

I forget who it was that said that we drink heavily at games for three reasons:

  1. My wife decided to come along/not to come along and is/was giving me grief.
  2. So we don't have a damned heart-attack when someone not old enough to drink does something stupid with an oblate spheroid.
  3. There's a game?

Number 2 is almost certainly true. I once attended a UT football game sober, and it was nearly the end of me.

We watch men who don't get paid to move a ball around, before they go downtown to act like idiots and maybe get in trouble with the law. (The men who DO get paid to move a ball around before they go downtown to act like idiots and maybe get in trouble with the law are on the other football channel that Time Warner doesn't carry.) For this reason, your wits need some kind of prophylaxis. Think of booze as a soul condom.

But I'm not writing today to encourage you to drink. Your wife is still mad at me for Ambrose Bierce Memorial Schnapps Night. Instead, I really have to wonder about the sanity of the Burnt-Orange nation after all the butthurt bullscat I heard following a twenty-point win over a team that actually had a fully-functioning quarterback.

Here, as a counterexample to said scat, was Scipio Tex after the game:

I haven't had a chance to do a re-watch with the help of rewind button, but here are my incomplete thoughts on a solid, if imperfect, 37-17 Texas win.

That right there is epistemological humility. He's got an opinion, but knows what it's worth ... and wants more information. No, really. Take heed, because this is a thing made dear by sheer rarity.

Others, however... Where to begin? On my hike back up the hill after the game, each parking lot was possessed by its own homespun Tiresias, prophesying humiliation and judgement, unfolding the patrilineage of Texas football flaccidity back through each Failfather, all the way to Odin. Bedwetters' Local 3305 had taken to the streets, daring any sunshine to cross the picket line. They didn't need to watch no stinkin' tape! They know! There's suck about! The buck stops there!

Gee, Skippy, glad you cleared that up. Next, Texas is going to beat New Mexico. What a tragedy that will be! They probably won't shut the Lobos out. New Mexico might break into a double digit score. What will we do then, with such a disastrous victory?

I KNOW I KNOW I KNOW I KNOW!!! Let's all go down to Jim Jones' joint and have ourselves a Kool Aid. Do you like Grape?

Feh. Doom is cheap. Take a look at the roster and realize that the time to risk near coronaries for footballgasms is more likely over the next two seasons ... at the very earliest. Have another beer and remind yourself that the game is won at the highest level by programs that get the best talent and put it in the right place. Then look at your burnt-orange shirt and remember that I'm talking about your program. You are not a Temple alum. GDGD is someone else's problem now. There's gonna be some good games this season, and at the end of it the only Waterford crystal Mack Brown's gonna be hoisting is a rock glass. Here's to 2012, we hardly knew ye.

This is not 2005, no matter how much someone's butt hurts. It's not even 2008. It's more like 1995 or 1996. Enjoy the ride, make some new memories (or drown them), and stuff your bitchhole with BBQ.

I'm not an X's and O's kind of guy. Why the wonkish pantheon of this particular Olympus tolerates my abuse of Barking Carnival's photons, I'll never know. But I do know what I don't know, or at least I have a pretty good idea where the shoreline of my grok meets the roiling seas of incomprehension. Like Alice, I can only peek through that little door into that lovely garden full of passing trees, until Longhorn Scott sneaks a vial of "Think Me" onto the table. Even then, the effects are temporary and my brain is soon full. I go back to "this team wants to go that way, the other team the other way, and OU still sucks," and that's enough for me.

I'm so glad I'm a beta.