So my friend Nikki was convinced I needed to add a college football game watching party to my list of adventures. Nikki’s serious about her college sports; you see she’s from Gainesville, Florida – home to the University of Florida and the Gators and, as I soon found out, where they are very passionate about college football.
The first attempt of Project Expose Alyssa to College Football failed miserably. Instead of chips and wings and the blaring sound of the game on TV, we walked into the venue (someone’s house) to find everyone sitting around the coffee table playing Taboo. Quite anti-climatic considering the 20 minute trod from the metro station. Nikki promised she’d make it up to me and sure enough the following Saturday we were on our way to the Pour House DC to join other Gator alums and fans to watch the Gators take on the Game Cocks.
|Albert the Gator|
We got to the Pour House and Albert the Gator greeted us on entry. Inside, people wearing Gator t-shirts were handing out stickers and DC Gator cups. Even I got into the festivities and put on a Gator t-shirt. (It was only after we took the photo that I realized the shirt said “Chompions”).
|Showing some Gator spirit|
I must admit that I really didn’t pay attention to the game. The Gators were trailing the Game Cocks anyway, and I was much more interested in my wings and observing the fans around me. There was a wide assortment of Gator apparel but the winning ensemble went to the guy wearing a white with orange trim polo shirt paired with bright orange pants. The pants were embroidered with tiny “F’s”. No lie.
The singing started at some time during the third quarter. I turned around and saw a line of fans standing arm in arm swaying and singing “We are the boys from old Florida/F-L-O-R-I-D-A/Where the girls are the fairest/The boys are the squarest/Of any old state down our way.”
Even though the Gators lost, I was still impressed by the fan dedication and loyalty. Sports teams really do bring people together – maybe one day we’ll rally around the West Indies again… but that’s a whole other story. And on the point of maybes, maybe I’ll brave the elements and go see the Terps play this season. But while we wait for Nikki to make that happen….
Do the gator chomp y’all, do the gator chomp
He’s a mean alligator
Get out of his swamp….