It’s hard being a Georgia Bulldogs fan nowadays. Not because of their heartbreaking losses during clutch games like the one suffered to Alabama this past week. No, I’m getting used to that, which is sad. I love the Dawgs but one thing is for sure: If there’s a lot riding on a game, UGA is most likely going to come out with an ‘L.’ Some will call that pessimism, I call it a sad reality.
No, it’s become harder for me to be a fan because of DVR. I moonlight as a wedding DJ on the weekends and fall is a very popular time for weddings. Which means when the ‘Dawgs are playing, I’m usually working. You would think that I would be thankful for the technology that allows me to easily record the boys in red and black and watch when it’s convenient. But, it ain’t that easy.
There are a lot of factors to consider when attempting to make it through a Saturday in the south without hearing anything about the game. I used to really put a lot of effort into it. I’d resist talking to people. I’d steer clear of wedding guests who I knew were keeping up with the game. I’d cut off all cell phone activity to ensure I didn’t check Facebook or receive a text from a fellow fan. I used to do all these things until I noticed that the harder I tried, the harder it was to get home to watch the game without already knowing the outcome.
Aside from accidentally overhearing information about the game, there are the opposing team’s fans. They just love to ruin the game for you. I remember doing a wedding for a Carolina fan years ago who, after the wedding was over and I was packed and ready to go, he shook my hand to say thank you for a wonderful evening. He followed up the handshake with, “Well, did you make it through the night without hearing the score?” I excitedly said, “Yes!” With a smirk, he said, “Well, you don’t want to know.”
Then there are my kids. It took years for them to realize exactly how much it means to me to be able to watch the game. They just know that I love the team, so, for the longest time, at least one of them would welcome me home Saturday night with a hug and a “Georgia won, Daddy!” Ugh. Yay?
My sister-in-law is guilty, too. She’ll go all season without texting me. But when the ‘Dawgs lose a big game, sure enough, there she is sending her little text to remind me that she is an Ohio State fan and she’s so “disappointed” because she was hoping for a Buckeye/Bulldog showdown in January. Riiiight.
The final straw is my neighbors. We moved into this neighborhood a year ago this month. Imagine my excitement when I found out my neighbors four houses down throw huge parties in their garage for every Georgia game.
I thought I was a fan, but these people are next-level fans. Their garage is decked out with UGA memorabilia: pictures, keepsakes, newspaper clippings… even their garage itself is painted red and black. The ceiling is painted green to look like a football field with a giant G in the middle. Now I have to make it past this rowdy, garage-filled party every Saturday night without knowing how the game turned out? Ain’t happening.
Case-in-point: After the Carolina game, I had to squeeze down the road because the entire cul-de-sac was still lined with cars and a crowd was still celebrating in the garage. Last Saturday? There was one car parked by the curb. There’s no way I’ll be able to get down my street without seeing signs of what happened between the hedges. Nothing short of covering my eyes as I drive down the street… which I have considered.
There have been people who suggest that I can still watch the game if I know the outcome. It’s just not the same. I do get to enjoy games sometimes. In fact, I’ll be here Halloween day frying up some Gator tail. Big-game curse be damned, I’ll still be a fan.