Football + Me: The Origins.

Alabama Bloggers

We are having a “Score For Your Team Football Carnival” at Alabama Bloggers, and I’ve got to make sure and get my point in for Alabama! And if you participate, you are entered into a giveaway to win one of TEN free lunches from my favorite restaurant, Zoës Kitchen!!!

I have not been a football fan since birth – I married into it. The only thing I recall about football in my childhood is being irritated about how long the games lasted, and so therefore how long our one TV was completely occupied with mind-numbingly boring sports.

My husband Chris and his family have had the same season tickets since he was 13 years old. And not only do they go to all of the home games, tailgating is just as essential of a part of the tradition as anything else.

I learned what I was getting myself into about the importance of this tradition early on in our dating relationship.

First, a little background: We started dating in the month of July, many, many years ago, and we typically went on dates during the day on Saturday. He slept later than I did, and so the agreement was that he would call me when he woke up and let me know when he would pick me up.

So I’d get up on a Saturday morning around 9am, and wait….and wait….and wait some more.

I would check the phone. Is it working? Yup.

…and wait some more.

Did he forget about me?

…and wait some more.

He’s had time to go on another whole date. Is he dating someone else in the mornings and me in the afternoons?

…and wait some more.

Did he die in his sleep?

…and wait some more.

Finally, around 1pm, the phone would ring. My groggy voiced boyfriend would say that he was up and getting ready, and he’d pick me up in a little while.

After a few months of these utterly boring Saturday mornings of waiting, the Season Of Football arrived.

All of a sudden, the tables turned. He would literally be at my house on Saturday mornings BEFORE THE SUN CAME UP to take me to Tuscaloosa, which is only an hour away.

And no, it didn’t matter that kickoff was at 6pm.

As a clueless teenage girl who didn’t even know what a first down was, I was completely taken off guard by the celebration of this boring, meaningless sport.

I literally SLEPT through at least three games that first season.

Yes, I really slept. In the stadium with 80,000+ raving lunatics screaming fans.

The people in the stands around us mercilessly made fun of me, and I’m sure thought to themselves, “THIS girlfriend won’t last long.”

And I’m sure Chris really appreciated me falling asleep leaning up against him, keeping him from jumping up and down, yelling, shaking his shaker, or basically moving in any way (since it’s not like there’s a lot of wiggle room in the stadium anyway.)

The season wore on, and I learned nothing about football. Finally, it was time for the Alabama-Auburn game. Which, of course, occurs in late November.

The weather was atrocious. It was forecasted to sleet and rain.

Surely they would cancel the game.

What? They don’t cancel football games?

Oh. Well then surely we won’t go. We’ll watch it at home with my parents or something, right?

Oh – you’re here before sunlight again – good morning.

So we head to Tuscaloosa.

We sit in the freezing (not yet sleeting) weather all morning, all day, and all evening, waiting for the beloved game.

I am reduced to a block of ice. I sit, perfectly still, unable to move, talk, eat, drink. I was not made for being outdoors during this type of weather.

Finally, after what seemed like days of torturous weather, it was time to walk to the stadium.

The game started and the score stayed close. And then, the sleet and rain commenced.

Sleet AND rain. So that you are hit with ice cubes and then doused with icy water. I’m pretty sure that this sort of torture results in death.

All I could think: “Well, surely this means we’ll leave early – right?”

Oh – Alabama/Auburn is different?


I sat, my head looking down into my lap trying to keep the ice water out of my face, numb to my belly button, begging God to spare my life.

And then, we lost.

And the moral of this story is: This is how insanely in love with my husband that I was and still am. Although I do appreciate the sport a little more now that I understand what a first down is (and even a second and third and fourth and fifth down! Oh – wait…), I really just love BEING with him.

And if that means sitting in the sleet and ice and rain, well, okay, I’m just glad that we are married now, so that I can skip games like that and still see him at the end of the day.

Be sure to check out everyone else’s Football posts at Alabama Bloggers! And come join us and participate in the carnival fun and WIN lunch from Zoës!!!

Leave your comment below!


  1. Heresy. Blasphemy. I still love you though!

  2. I think you should write a novel. Instead of "Love in the time of Cholera" (which I have not read) you should write "Love in a time of football season" (which I would read).


  3. Well, at least he is rooting for the right team! We are not big football fans here, I have not even been to a college game, (but I want to), but that is a great story! It's amazing what what young love will overcome, isn't it?

  4. Chase can vividly remember sitting through that football game. :) Roll Tide!

  5. Love this post!!!

    I am a long time football fan. Since my brother is 14 years older than me i grew up going to his games and fell in love. Add to that 10 years of cheerleading and a football obsessed husband (and Family-n-laws) and you have one football fantic wife.

  6. Not a football fan and thankfully Hubby isn't either. BUT! if he was, I would endure it just to be with him too!

  7. Tracy B at FeedSack Cooking says:

    I know how it is. I sat thru a tornado at legion field during an alabama and auburn game. soaked from head to toe and still managed to go and eat after the game. everyone else in there was soakin wet to. I have a mixed family I am a Roll Tide girl and the boys are War Eagles.

  8. Kate Bagley says:

    What a funny story! My first Alabama Auburn game was in the rain, but I was not an ice cube!

  9. Tyson, Rachel and Kariya says:

    That is some serious love to sit in that kind of weather. I think I would have said, sorry honey I'll catch you after the game! Haha. :)

  10. Your hubby better appreciate all that love! Not a football fan either :)

  11. Hard for me to imagine not being a fan since birth. I grew up in the days before games were on TV–in fact it might have even been before TV in general. I can remember lying in bed at night and listening to the Razorback game on the radio through my bedroom wall.

  12. Rachel, just saw your comment on the dentist. I believe you are supposed to take them when they are one and then every year after that for a checkup and cleaning. Today was James'first visit and he is 2 1/2 . Being the fourth child, its a wonder he got to go at all. All they do at this age is clean the teeth and check to see if their baby teeth are coming in okay. I don't know what in the world they would do about it if they weren't though.

    I want to get together too. We'll have to see what we can come up with!

  13. Carrie @ Who Knew? says:

    When I was a kid and my Dad watched football games all my sister and I would talk about was how when we grew up we'd never watch any football. Now we're grown-ups and she freaking loves UT football games. Sell out.

    Although my guy loves football and it's on all fall and winter. Oh the things we do for love.

  14. I love college football, but I don't envy you tailgating all day long every Saturday during football season! I'd much rather watch it in the comfort of my own house!
    The first time we took Ryan tailgating in Auburn, it was cold and rainy, while I went to the game Ryan stayed back at the tailgating site with my family…when I return from the game I find Ryan sleeping in my parents car ;)

  15. I was at that game! It was awful. It’s the only Auburn-Alabama game that I’ve left early. I was also at the AU-UA game in Legion Field with a tornado not far away. Even when they announced the tornado warning, NOBODY left! Roll Tide!

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