Saturday, September 24, 2011

A Whole Different Ballgame

We're Commodores now! This was our first opportunity to attend a Vandy game. I've been near Vanderbilt all my life and had never been to a game. It was pretty exciting to just hold the student tickets. The student tickets that consisted of a sticker on the back of our ID cards. The student tickets that costs a total of $25. That covers the entire season. No waiting in lines, no up at midnight trying to purchase online and no seniority. Even my little children were awarded the season tickets as students. Yeah, big difference from Auburn's season ticket regiment.
It was exciting nonetheless. My parents were visiting and didn't have tickets yet. We had a good intuition that they could get them game day, at the game for somewhat of a steal. Jason was tailgating with an Alabama Alumni association for the conflicting Alabama game so we met him really close to game time. Parking was a small obstacle because outside of the Owen graduate territory, we don't know our way around campus very well. We drove through campus refusing to PAY for parking at a game we knew tickets would be less. Our little campus tour took us right through fraternity row. Jackson was mesmerized by all the college co-eds and their illicit partying habits. As game time was upon us, they had made their decent to the stadium leaving behind all their underage paraphernalia. Jackson addressed me by saying, "Look, Mom, they are having a LITTERING party!" Laughter spread throughout the car as I commended him on noticing how terribly they had left their yards. This green, newly converted recycling mommy was utterly proud. It's working! My littering is the worst form of carelessness is making an impression on my 5 year old that even intelligent college students had failed to retain. Here's hoping it's still a strong virtue in 15 years. Better yet, here's hoping he's WAY too intelligent to join a fraternity, unless it's one of those elite doctoral fraternities.

We made it to the stadium and began to contemplate tickets for my parents. I made a quick call to Jason to try and locate tickets as none were for sale so near the campus. As I hung up, a nice man approaches and asks how many I need. I explained that we only needed 2, the rest of us were students. He handed over 2 tickets FREE! Seriously folks, this is NOT truly SEC football, those tickets don't actually come FREE. Only then do we learn that the student access entrance was on the other side of the stadium. The stadium it's self isn't that big but it's directly attached to the baseball field and we all know that Vanderbilt's baseball team carries the University in sports so it was a significant hike. We were kindly picked up by the campus concierge in a limo of a golf cart and transported to the student gate in style. Lincoln was riding Ergo and he thought he had the best seat in the house. I'm certain it was the highlight of his night. We met Jason at the gate and headed inside.

As we got a little snack (dinner) Jackson stated that he'd prefer to just "hang out by the bathrooms." Apparently he had learned quickly that the real fun was in eating and drinking, the game was just a little boring to a 5 year old. Mom, Dad, Jackson, Lincoln, Jason and I made our way through the student section complete with a young couple completely passed out on one another. We found not just seats but rows and rows of empty seats and took ours. They were still decent seats I might add. I mentioned this was quite a different ballgame, right? The boys were able to run freely among the 3 rows that we claimed for our dinner spread of stadium hot dogs and soda. With Nana and her bag of snacks, I think the boys actually enjoyed themselves. A few of Jason's fellow graduate students were seated near us. One of them had a lovely girlfriend that is a Kindergarten teacher in the Metro schools. She took to Jackson and Jackson took to her as well. It made Jason proud that he knows a cute girl when he sees one. I think the boyfriend might have felt a little threatened at one time. After halftime, Lincoln was getting a little weary and Mom and Dad left to take them home but it was a fun first experience as Vanderbilt won their second consecutive game in a number of years. So far they have been able to continue the winning streak. It has strong potential to come to a screeching halt as they play Clemson this weekend but I think they finally have a record they can be proud of. In football anyway.
I am pretty sure it's a myth but we've been hearing that the student cheer for their normally loosing football team is:
"That's alright, that's Ok,
You're gonna work for US one day."
It's fitting. Lots of smart folks go to Vandy.
And for now, we're proud to call ourselves Commodores!

Go 'Dores!

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