Ahh! The temperatures are beginning to drop and the leaves are starting their transformation from bland green to bright reds and oranges. That can mean only one thing: football season is here.
Football season brings out something different in a man. A normal, everyday guy will transform into a different beast when his favorite team is on Saturday or Sunday.
If you don't believe me, just look at the highlights on television sometime. Invariably you will see some fat, hairy, ugly looking fellow with his chest painted his team's color. He will be screaming at the players wearing either a football helmet or some sort of crazy head gear. Of course, the common denominator with all crazy fans is the beer in their hands.
I have a little of this in me myself. When Notre Dame plays on Saturday I have to go and put on my Irish jersey (blue if they are at home, white if they are on the road). It may seem ridiculous but the players know if I don't have on my jersey and then they do something stupid, like lose. Of course, that is all they are doing this year anyway, so maybe it's time to lose the jerseys.
Anyway, I will sit in front of the television for three hours, yelling every time a player fumbles or a coach makes a bonehead call. You see, they can actually hear me even though I'm thousands of miles away. When they screw up, they know I'm angry and when they do well, they know I'm happy. That is why I wear the jersey. It gives them the ability to hear me and that's my story and I'm sticking to it.
I have friends that go even further. One friend I know eats certain things at certain parts of the game. At kickoff he has to be eating a hot dog and if his team is losing in the fourth quarter he must order a pizza.
Another friend is a body painter. He will go to away games with his chest and body painted. Not exactly the best way to attract girls but being single during football season isn't always a bad thing I guess. At least they don't get the eye roll like I get from my wife. Of course, I give her the same thing when she's drooling over her men on "Grey's Anatomy."
Some fans go too far though. Take the Oklahoma Sooner/Texas Longhorn rivalry. These fans just plain don't like each other and it raised eyebrows recently when a man wearing a Texas shirt walked into an Oklahoma City bar.
After a few words a bloody skirmish ensued and left the Texas-shirt-wearing fan nearly castrated and an Oklahoma fan facing aggravated assault charges that could put him in prison for five years.
Yes, you read that correctly. The man was nearly castrated. Evidently during the fight, the Oklahoma fan grabbed the guy's crotch, pulled him to the ground and wouldn't let go. It took 60 stitches to reattach the man's testicles.
Now that goes way beyond being a fan and is in the category of mentally disturbed. It's one thing to wear a jersey or to even paint yourself up for a game. It is stupid and a little juvenile but it is not harming anyone (except the mental anguish it causes those who see the big, fat hairy men without shirts). It is a completely different thing to attack someone and physically harm them.
I hate the Michigan Wolverines but I'm not going to grab a guy's twig and berries if he walks into my house wearing a Michigan shirt. As a matter of fact, you can wear any shirt you want, calling me the nastiest names in the world and I'm not going to be doing any crotch grabbing.
Then again maybe I don't have what it takes to be a true football fan. Oh well, maybe I'll just reinvent myself as a soccer fan. Oh wait, their fans riot and kill people. Umm, maybe I'll just stick to football and wear a cup.