Monday, November 24, 2008

Passion for the Iron Bowl

It's Iron Bowl Week in Alabama. In a way, I have to confess, I don't even really fully grasp the passion of this event because I've never lived in the state. You see, in Alabama, football is all they've got. There's no pro teams. Only a small sliver of the state is on the water. These people live, breathe, eat football -- much like folks in Indiana or Kentucky do for basketball.

Tide fans are especially fired up for the game this season. We haven't experienced a win over Auburn since Bush's first year of Presidency. Auburn keeps celebrating by holding up more fingers, and Alabama fans are ready to show them the finger. Here's the video that has 'Bama fans all fired up this week, from the celebration at the end of the '07 game:

And finally, to give you a taste of JUST how big & important this game is to Alabamians, I read this story a few months ago while reading my favorite Tide Football bulletin board...

I was a 4th year med student at The University of Alabama School of Medicine (the proper name to my mind, despite UAB’s attempts to steal it) doing my Cardiology acting internship. The Cardiology service was always slammed: beepers exploding all the time, the ER calling non-stop, patients trying to die in the units, etc. My team happened to be on call Thanksgiving 1992; we were all afraid we wouldn’t get to watch the game. The beepers were ominously quiet ALL day until the minute the game finished when all hell broke loose. Apparently, people had been having chest pain for hours but refused to come to the hospital because they didn’t want to miss any portion of the game.

People who aren’t from Alabama wouldn’t ever understand the depth of passion for our teams.

1 comment:

alicia said...

Yes, as a current resident of Alabama, there is something unique about football here. Oh, I'm an FSU fan, I grew up that way blah blah, but for these people, this is IT. My Auburn friends, will be that way until they die, even if they go 0-13. My Alabama friends, same way. They will forever love Saban and forever hate John Parker Wilson. I could probably sell all the Daniel Moore prints my roommate has in our livingroom to bailout GM. You see people, who are naturally reserved turn into maniacs when the fight song plays. I didn't really understand, it but I'm starting to. Honestly, its kinda fun :) There's no beach, nothing else to do, except go crazy for a few months out of the year.