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September 17, 2006

Hail to the Victors

Have I mentioned that David and his dad and brother are rabid Michigan football fans? Despite the fact that they are originally from Ohio, and that nobody in their family attended the University of Michigan until David transferred there from Hope College in 1990, they have had season tickets to the Big House since the 1970s. They have also turned me into a huge Michigan fan (for a small woman who didn't even know what football was until about four years ago -- this is despite having spent my whole high school career in marching band). Apparently, I still have the innocence of young fandom: I simply assume that everyone cares about Michigan football, and I always expect us to win because we are, of course, the best team in football (regardless of what the rankings say). I have seen us lose on television (notably in two Rose Bowls), but I always chalk it up to a fluke.

In addition to watching all of the home games live, David and his family watch all of the big away games on television, usually in a bar. Yesterday was the big game against Notre Dame, so we all trooped over to the Zuckey Lake Tavern to watch it. All means the whole M-- family, a few of Mr. M's friends, and our friends Shawn and Dave. I first participated in this ritual in 2002, but it predates me by many years. Apparently, Mr. M. has told Shawn and Dave that they are bad luck because we have never won a televised game against Notre Dame when they have watched it with the M-- family. I was along four years ago when Michigan lost spectacularly, and have declined the invitation every year since then because it was absolutely no fun to be with David's family on such a mournful occasion. But yesterday I went along because I had missed M-- family bar night on Wednesday and I wanted to do my part to root for my favorite football team. I spent the first half of the game reading my students' quickwrites and grading their geo quizzes, but was able to watch the second half, in which Michigan scored one of the most decisive victories on such an important game that I have ever seen. 47 to 21.

By the third quarter, David's dad and brother were simply giddy. Normally, they are incorrigible pessimists. No matter how far up we are, they still anticipate a loss. David was like that yesterday, but not the others. I have never seen them so sure of a victory, or even so happy. It truly was a joyous occasion for the M-- family, and really for all Michigan fans everywhere!

Posted by eklanche at September 17, 2006 06:01 AM

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