Oge (who I just noticed is now a Texan!) will not necessarily be happy with this, but he won't be surprised by this admission either: I'm not really a football fan.
This may in part be due to my upbringing. My dad was not really a football fan and I went to high school in Peru where fútbol is something else entirely. That changed slightly when I went to college when, in order to be a freshman in relatively good standing, one went to football games. I therefore became a fairly ardent fan of the Big Green, even if we are currently 2-7. I didn't really understand the game all that well even then. This changed when, of all things, I joined the marching band my senior year (I switched to cymbals after playing the videocamera for a season) and I wanted to know when -- and more importantly why -- we had to start playing. (I also learned for the aforementioned Oge, the 'shmen on my hallway who played. And who derived great pleasure from tackling me in the hallway when I went to brush my teeth. Shall I describe what it's like having an offensive tackle doing something called the "turkey trot" on your chest while the rest of my 'shmen are looking on? I digress...) My dear wife played with the DCMB for five years and still can't really tell you what is happening on the field, but I finally picked up a cursory understanding.
This was not enough to turn my into a football fan, however. I don't really follow the NFL, nor do I really follow college football. After all, I teach at a school which happily doesn't have a football team (I've talked to the athletic director and she used the word "happy"). This also comes after having gone to graduate school at a place where football (along with basketball and hockey) was somewhat sacred: I shamfacedly confess that I never attended a game while I was there.
All this is meant to preface the peculiar things I'm feeling today, when NPR, colleagues at work and even my neighbors are asking me how I feel about the Michigan-OSU Game-to-End-All-Games this afternoon. (No, I didn't know they were both undefeated, although somehow i knew that Rutgers was.) And to be honest, with Angela and Xan out this weekend on Cape Cod and me here trying to get some serious writing done, I will reluctantly have to refrain from watching The Game.
Today, I feel like a Wolverine. Go Blue.
(UPDATE: So I lied, slightly. I have to make an appetizer for a birthday dinner tonight and I just turned on the game, where I discover it's 7-7. More perplexingly, however, I heard for the first time the opening strains of "O Fortuna" (from Orff's Carmina Burana) done by a marching band as fight music. I'm impressed -- and slightly disturbed. [Actually, I am more disturbed by this. Apparently, this is a common marching band thing?] But hey, Xan can actually sing that. I'm not kidding: he heard it on the radio the other day and has been happily screaming what sounds like "O Fortuna" all the time, appropriately fortissimo.)