Monday, April 06, 2009

an appropriate post for championship game night

i'd been saving this particular post for a special night, and this one seemed to be the best fit. so i present to you another "remember when" moment, carolina-style.

there are few teams that inspire the devotion--and complete distaste--like UNC does. as we've been building up to this game, i've seen fans remain fully devoted to the heels, some fair-weather fans come out of the woodwork, and those that can't stand the thought of them. i realize that UNC gets a bad rap from many of those "other" fans, especially when it seems like non-UNC supporters jump on the ramses band-wagon for tournament time.

yes, it happens. just like we saw more steelers fans come out this spring after the superbowl win. people like to cheer for the team that's winning.

and there are some people that say we lose our "school spirit" if we attended other universities and still persist with cheering for the heels. i remember the huge hoopla over students wearing shirts or hats supporting other universities on campus and the article that was written in the East Carolinian. i agree that if you wear a duke hat or wolfpack shirt to, say, an ECU football game--you're asking for it. wearing it to your 9 am chemistry class? no big deal. we may bleed purple and gold, but that doesn't mean we lose the teams we supported from the past. for some of us--many of us--that history goes further back than our four years in college. for my family, our support of UNC goes back a good five or six decades. three generations (that i know of--i'm sure i'll be corrected by relatives on facebook or that read my blog.) it's a proud tradition, that even though alan and i did not carry on, we realize it's importance in our family.

(and hey, my opportunity isn't over. it is the only local university with a doctorate of social work program...)

how i wish i had a picture of my "tarheel born and bred" certificate that hangs in my room at home. it proudly proclaims my tarheel heritage and is officially signed by all of the deans and coaches from 1983. i'll take one this weekend and post it, but needless to say, i was quite literally tarheel born and bred. my dad is a graduate, my aunt, my great-uncles and aunts, several cousins, (cousins once removed?) and... my grandaddy.
i found this picture when i was at home a couple of weekends ago, going through some old photos. though it's not terribly important or interesting, just a regular Christmas morning, i had to take it home and scan it. it's the sweatshirt.

i grabbed that sweatshirt at a yard sale we had a couple of months after my grandfather passed away. i was 12. it was a chilly morning and i was cold, and it was in the sale pile. but it became mine and is still one of my favorite sweatshirts to wear.

i wore it throughout high school (as shown by this senior year picture, taken on a UMYF retreat.)
i wore it in college (like when we were organizing a habitat for humanity warehouse in cleveland for spring break--good times, ash!)

i wore it on the night of the 2005 championship game. (no picture--sorry. but there are those that can verify--and i had tears in my eyes that night. seriously.)

and i'll be wearing it tonight.

cause it's not about hansborough and lawson. and it's not about the past championship banners and the possibility of one more.

it's about being tarheel born and bred. it's about waiting in line for eric montross's signature when i was a kid, watching games with my family, putting tarheel tattoos on my cheek as a middle schooler, a lifetime of memories choreographed around UNC fight songs...and a worn, comfy sweatshirt.

1 comment:

  1. This is a good post, even though I don't like UNC. Very nostalgic, though.