Monday, December 29, 2014

THANKS BRIAN


The days surrounding  New Years  is the pits on TV if you don't like college football. College bowl games dominate the tube. If someone had not stepped into my life to broadened my interests, I would probably shop or travel this week each year.

In high school, my perception of football was as a social event. I concentrated on chatting with  my friends in the stands and ignored the field except when my current beau's name was called over the loud speaker. I would check to see if he got up after that last fall down or was getting congratulatory pats on the bum by his teammates.

Interest mainly surfaced when the game was over and the girl friends were allowed to swarm the end zone to welcome their particular warrior home. That was when I learned that boys do cry (we didn't win a lot) and that in those days there was hardly a high school athlete with a full set of natural teeth. They removed their bridges to play.

Until I spent New Years day with Brian in the late 60's, watching football, wasn't on my to-do list. Brian was an off and on boyfriend who worked at NASA and had invited a bunch of us to his house in Coco Beach for a New Years Eve party.

This was during my party hearty days and Patti just put too much of herself into the celebration. I regained consciousness New Years day on the couch with my head on a pillow on Brian's lap. Bodies were strung out all over the floor. It was a carnage. There was not a cell in my body that didn't hurt.

Unable to move, I let Brian tend to me. He was remarkably cheerful and full of energy. It would have been easy to hate him if he hadn't been so darn sweet. He draped cold cloths over my burning forehead and eyes. He massaged my temples, neck, plied aspirin, orange juice, coffee, toast and talked very softly.

"Do you mind if I watch the Bowl game?" he asked.

"How long does it last?" I squeaked.

"Only about an hour more."

"OK" I replied thinking I could do an hour.  I sure wasn't able to go anywhere else.

Men in colorful uniforms ran, fell, got up in a group and ran again, only to fall again. Just like high school. Yawn. Only thing I understood was that the colors were pretty and the guys had cute butts.

Occasionally Brian would softly yell and fist pump the air bringing on waves of pain and nausea. He would immediately apologize but soon would repeat the action or growl his disapproval of a play.

In spite of my sometimes wobbly pillow, I dozed off for a while. When I awoke, it was still football only the uniforms were a different color.

"Gotta watch this." he said." It's Air force and Utah." Air force Academy was his alma mater.

I was feeling a bit better but was still  puny enough to be unwilling to move. He continued to stroke my head and brow absently like I was a favorite hound dog.

For many hours, we watched one game after another. I asked questions and he patiently answered. People came alive around us, food was eaten and soon all the guys were watching the games while most of the girls generally slept.

When the day ended, I knew a punt from a kick off, what downs were and could pick out the quarterback with no problem. I finally understood the intent of the game.  Wish I had known all this in high school.

The seed was planted and in the following years, I grew into a serious football fan. The zeal has waned a bit since I moved to Arkansas which has no professional team but this final week still draws me in for the college bowl games. I do love my Hogs (Razorbacks).

Thanks Brian, where ever you are.  I always think about you around New Years. You might have been the one that got away.


Are you a fan or have you better things to do during this time?


31 comments :

  1. I don't watch it on TV because of the infernal commercials, unless it's a game I'm really interested in. I know how it's played, but I get so wrapped up in it that I can't stand it and worry about having a heart attack over an important play gone wrong. My dad had four TVs in the house and tuned each one to a different game, then walked between the rooms to watch them. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sweet Man and I used to be rabid football fans. Loved the Steelers back in the 70-80's. Never really had a college team that we cheered on but we have always watched the bowl games on New Year's. Sweet Man was the one who was so totally patient and taught me, my girl and my girl's girl about football. Now Ry is a totally different case, you can tell him how the game is played and he still has other ideas.....tee hee.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I do not watch. I tried but just never got into it.

    ReplyDelete
  4. We never had football until my grandson entered third grade. He has played since with a broken foot and broken fingers and terrible contusions that stuck out like growths. I know when he had the ball and did not fall down that was good. I know when he fell I wanted to climb on the field and protect him. I am still not a fan but I kinda know the game now. '15/'16 will be Andrew's
    last years to play...and I still cry when anyone gets hurt. I hope none of my other grandsons play this game.
    I know there are injuries in other sports but football, to me, is the next thing to gladiators. That may be why every one loves it so.

    Maria has gone for her check up. Hope the news is good. She still cannot use her foot but we seem to be on the road to recovery.

    Happy New Year.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Definitely a big fan. But only if I have an interest in one of the teams. Don't want to watch just because it's on. I have to have an interest in which team wins or I don't watch.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hey, sweet Patti! I enjoyed reading your post as I always do...your in my top 5 for favorite blogs probably more like top 3. :) Football does grow on you doesn't it? I too love the Hogs and growing up in OK I am also a fan of OU and OSU. I no longer watch Pro football though. I was big fan of a couple of pro teams in the 70's 80' and 90's though. Happy New Year sweet friend! Hugs for you and nose kisses for the sweeties from me and mine! Maggie

    ReplyDelete
  7. I'm not a fan at all. When I was very young my older cousin played all-state. We had to go to games and watch in the freezing cold winter. It was a memorable bummer, and I have not liked football since.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I am a huge football nut!!!! I love football (my favorite sport) although I also like basketball and baseball... My Daddy taught me all about it ---and then I married a man who loved it and we had three sons who loved it. SO---I always joined it, and still to this day, I love football...

    Happy 2015.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

    ReplyDelete
  9. I like football when my teams are winning.
    What ever became of Brian?

    ReplyDelete
  10. Love the game, I'm afraid it is getting too dangerous for our current sensibilities. If they do not make some changes, the game may be replaced sometime in the future.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I am not such a big football fan. I would rather watch a movie or two on NeW Years Day.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Djan,
    Know what you mean. I find myself twisting in my chair trying to dodge tacklers. I have Direct TV so I usually pause the game for about half an hour so I can fast forward through the commercials.

    Linda W,
    Aww, SM really is a sweet man to have that much patience. Most guys just get so impatient with girl questions. Lucky you and me.

    Sue,
    I understand. It is not for everyone. I really miss your blog with great pictures and your sense of humor but am so glad you continue to stop by here.

    Gail,
    I once went to a kiddie game and was horrified when a child got hurt. It took all I had not to run out on the field and it wasn't even my kid.
    It is becoming too violent of a sport and I am not sure how much longer it will exist. I will enjoy it as long as I can. Sure hope the New Year brings Maria some real healing.

    NCMountainwoman,
    I can't get my professional team on TV here so I often watch just to root against a rival in our division. I do the same for college games.

    Maggie,
    Wow, I am flattered to be in your top 5 blogs. Thank you. If the Sooners are not playing the Hogs, I am all for them.

    robin,
    I remember such a game in high school when I was in Ohio and it was miserable!!! I understand.

    Betsy,
    Yea to a real fan. I totally understand your enthusiasm. Have a super New Years day watching the boys play.

    Brighid,
    I do like winning but I am usually just grateful that no one gets hurt.
    I looked up Brian and thanks to Facebook, I found him. He is still quite handsome and has aged much better than I. He was a real sweetie.

    joeh,
    I am so afraid you are right. Sadly the players are getting bigger and bigger and do much more damage. Not sure what the answer is but I hope we can find a way to keep the sport. If I had a youngun, I'd probably forbid him to play. How is that for being a hypocrite?

    Olga,
    Isn't it wonderful that we have options. Hope you find a good movie.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I don't watch much football, but the Oregon Ducks are in the Rose Bowl ( I think) so I need to fake interest.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I love our local team, the Roughriders and I follow the Seattle Seahawks since their punter is also from our little city.

    But at this time of year, I'm watching junior hockey. Tomorrow evening will be the Canada/USA in a game for first place in their division. (Go Canada!)

    I happen to enjoy most sports, though must admit tennis and basketball are not in my purview.

    Enjoy the games!

    ReplyDelete
  15. When I went to highschool games, I knew how the game as played and watched it. My dad was a football fan and we always had a game on TV on Sundays. My college did not have a football team, but my home state of Oregon and my adopted state of Washington supplied the Huskies, the Cougars, the Beavers and the Ducks!We will be watching the U. of Oregon Ducks play in the Rose Bowl on New Years Day.
    Then in 1976 the Seattle Seahawks became the newest NFL franchise, and I have been a fan ever since. Yesterday the Seahawks win their division and are headed for the playoffs with homefield advantage, just like last year when they won the Super bowl. Our city is football crazy right now. So yes, I am a fan.
    And I loved your story of how you became one.

    ReplyDelete
  16. I enjoyed reading your story. I remembered a time when girls were recognized by the beau's number of the letter-sweater they wore. LOL
    Ever since my husband died, there are no sports fans in this house.

    ReplyDelete
  17. One of the things I love most about my husband is he only watches baseball, and only if it's the Red Sox. Bless his heart.

    ReplyDelete
  18. We are more hockey , soccer and curling fans. Football never made it into our home except for the parade at this time of year.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Your brought back many memories of high school football games and college years. Like you, I never really knew what was going on with football until I was in college. A guy I dated explained it all to me as we watched the Green Bay Packers. I loved that team. We watched them as often as we could. We even were able to attend a Bronco game in the early 60's.

    Now, I love football, but my interest has waned. I'm not sure why. I think it just has too much hype these days.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Stephen,
    Ah, such vigor:)) Love the name "Ducks." Since I don't have a horse in the race--not wild about the Seminoles--I'll root for your Ducks.

    Eileen,
    I'm like you on tennis and basketball.
    It always helps to have a local boy on a team. Wish your Canadians good luck.

    Linda R,
    Knowing what was going on would have been a big help in high school. You really have a sports rich area and I know how you love your Sounders. May the Seahawks repeat since my Dolphins are back on the beach for the rest of the season.

    Manzi,
    Your husband really put sports on your dinner table. I really envy your having been so in the mix with the Twins. That had to have been exciting.

    Marty,
    I love football but baseball is where my real passion lies. Wishing your Red Sox and my Marlins a great year.

    Heidrun,
    We love what we are exposed to and I totally understand why hockey is tops in your area. Someday I will have to check out curling. We only hear about it during winter Olympics.

    Sally,
    So glad someone else was clueless in high school. It is a lot more interesting when you know what is going on.
    Mine has waned a bit also. Baseball has replaced it as a passion. I kind of worry about the future of football.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Love this post. You just know how to nail a story so well, so quickly.
    Mrs is the fan here, and it's just for our New England team, usually, though I do suspect any 'tight end' is worth watching in her eyes.

    Thanks, Patti. Great post.

    ReplyDelete
  22. This story was wonderfully written, Patti! I used to be a big sports fan, but have kinda gotten away from it. I don't watch much college football except when the MU Tigers are playing. I always loved pro football when Joe Montana was playing, but since he retired, I guess I have too! I hear hubby and son talking about the games, but I haven't gotten back into it.
    Happy New Year to you!

    ReplyDelete
  23. As is usual your post gave me a smile and this time a bit of nostalgia. I hope your new year is a fine fine year. Best wishes to you and....yes Brain too I guess where ever he is. :-)
    Fun post.

    ReplyDelete
  24. I'm not much of a fan- but like you- I do love my Hogs! When I was in high school we had a hockey team and I believe if I had continued to live in the north- that would have become my favorite sport to watch.

    Happy New Year and blessings!

    ReplyDelete
  25. Your one of the main reason I want to blog more this New Year. You write such fun post and they have a way of bringing back long ago memories that have laid dormant for years until you bring them alive again.
    This post brought back my college memories of dating the handsome quarter back and my best friend dating the Center. Like you we visited in the bleachers until game over. haha
    I did follow football for years later especially the Houston Oilers and Cowboys but now unless I watch Texas play I don't watch football. I do keep up with it though through my brothers and sons.
    Thank you for visiting and leaving me such a warm kind comment. I do love reading your site and often I wish that you would write a book because you know I would be your best fan.
    Sending you the best of everything in 2015.
    Love ya
    Maggie

    ReplyDelete
  26. Kind of a rough way to enter the sports field. I'm still chatting in the bleachers. Don't know a thing about the sport.

    Happy, Happy 2015 to you my friend!!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Barry,
    Aw, thanks for the neat compliment. Got a chuckle out of Mrs. and the tight ends. Me too.

    Cheryl,
    Thank you so much for the kind words. Joe was and is awesome and I really like his new commercial.

    GQ,
    Glad I could give you a smile. Facial exercises are crucial. Back at you for a great 2015.

    Terri,
    Our Hogs ended well this year didn't they? Florida didn't have a hockey team when I was younger so I wasn't exposed. Maybe someday.

    Maggie,
    Ah good, another bleacher chatter. It was fun wasn't it? All it took was a patient man to explain the game and I am glad we both found one. I really hope you get the blogging bug again. You have been missed.

    Grannie Annie,
    Well the bleacher chat is not a bad thing and a great way to pass time in the stands waiting for the game to end. I know I enjoyed it in the day.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Nope...never have been a sports watcher. It's strange because all three of my children are avid fams. Hope you have a wonderful New Year and stay well.

    ReplyDelete
  29. I'm sorry to say I don't understand or watch football to the consternation of my husband. In fact, he rarely watches it now because it's more fun to watch with someone who's enjoying it along with him. I do feel bad about that, but I don't force him to watch chick flicks either. Well.... most of the time. He did use to love watching it with our son.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Enjoyed your account of sports interest.

    I was initially exposed to baseball and learned all the fine points in my home state rooting for the Cleveland Indians who won the pennant in 1948 -- the year we ended up in AK. My high school there finally got a football team my H.S. senior year so we all learned the game with the players.

    ReplyDelete
  31. My sweetie loves the game and I love it when my kids are playing. Otherwise, I generally have other things demanding my attention.
    Sandy

    ReplyDelete