Friday, November 23, 2012

30 Days of Blogging. Day 23, Maroon Friday; Egg Bowl Eve

I tried to edit this blog for clarity for some sensitive (yet mostly anonymous) readers (see comments).  I probably didn't succeed and if not I probably won't lose any sleep over it.

I love Mississippi State University.

I love that Al Gore created the internet so I can watch games on my computer/tv here in Ukraine.

I don't remember when I first started liking MSU, I think sometime in early high school or jr high.  I remember looking at MSU yearbooks in the school library at Holly Bluff.  Somehow or another, without actually knowing anyone at the time that attended either school, I became "aware" of the apparent cultural differences represented by the two schools, or at least by their respective fanbases.  Those differences I think are perpetuated today by fans of both schools in the form of stereotypes.

I grew up in a small Delta town in the 70's where the contrast between the haves and have-nots was sometimes pretty stark.  Mine was a world less than 10 years removed from segregation.

In the grossest generalities (a gross generality by definition allows for some exceptions so don't get your boxers in a wad), the Ole Miss kids in town were the snotty rich kids.  Later, of course, I met State fans that were equally well-off but I never knew a State fan growing up that put on "airs" the way a lot of my Ole Miss friends seemed to.  I thought they had an over-inflated sense of self worth.

I think a lot of them equated being an Ole Miss grad or fan with being "cultured" and elite but in my experience growing up (remember the times) most of the Ole Miss fans I knew were of two extremes: Either rich snobby types or off-the-chart-rebel-flag-waving rednecks, the latter of which, like many Alabama fans, probably never set foot in a college classroom.

In contrast, I think every State fan I ever knew growing up was a friendly, down-to-earth type.  Many were rednecks for sure- but more the good ole country boy variety than the entitled plantation owner variety.

  • I love the sound of clanging cowbells.
  • I love "you can wrap this one in maroon and white".
  • I love the sight of smoke and the smell of a hundred grills wafting over Dudy Noble Field.
  • I love, "Welcome to Humphrey Coliseum for an evening of Baaaasketball, Mississippi State style."


And yes, I love the education I received at MSU.    Even more, I love the life-long friends I made there and how I was discipled and nurtured by several on-campus ministries.

I love the Chapel of Memories.  I love the story of Old Main.  I love Eckie's Pond and the South Farm and the Wildlife Pens and Switzers Sweetgums and the Vet School.  I think State's ice cream, and wine and cheese and vineyards are a whole lot cooler than the Pot Farm at Ole Miss.  I like "Hail" to my dear old State better than "Hail" to my mixed drink but I do admit GTHOM at the end of our pre-game prayer is tacky and I never participated in saying that.  I love the "Game of Change" and the fortitude to sneak-out-of-State in the dead of night to mount a blow against racism.  I love the history and the long list of State luminaries.

Ole Miss obviously has a rich heritage, too and it's share of important graduates.  It's just that, eh, I don't care about them!

Now- I will grant that there are some lovely sights at Ole Miss.  Perhaps my all-time favorite being 1987 Miss Teen Mississippi Kristi Addis who was at Ole Miss right after I finished at State.  She was, in fact, one of my roommates' cousin.  I always liked the BSU Directors at Ole Miss.  I do count a few graduates as friends and I've known a lot of great kids that went to school there- I usually call them Missionaries.

Of course, I got no complaints about the "sights" at Mississippi State, either.  In fact, I'd have to say it's more of a Mississippi thing than a State or Ole Miss thing.  I once took a Northern Californian friend (land of extreme granola girls, his words, not mine) to a Mississippi State football game and within a week or so he transferred to State.  He had seen the light.  And about 20,000 beautiful Mississippi girls!


So, here I sit in my Maroon MSU Hoodie.  It is, afterall, Maroon Friday.  Tomorrow is the Egg Bowl and I'll admit I'm a little nervous.  Records don't mean much in this series.  I remember several times when the best team on paper came out on the losing end of the final score.  Win, or lose- I love my Dogs.  I'll still think most folks associated with Ole Miss are obnoxious, snotty brats (probably in part because I read sports blogs and the most obnoxious among them like to troll on State's blogs.  I NEVER post on Ole Miss's blog).  And if they think I'm an Ag School redneck country bumpkin so be it.  It fits.




13 comments:

Janet Tuttle said...

well said!! Hail State!! (by Janet Tuttle)

Anonymous said...

Well I bet you just feel stupid now....some people just choose a cow pasture over a Graceland. Your loss. Hotty Toddy #FailState 41-24 : (

Ministry Happens in Ukraine said...

Thank you, Anonymous, for making my point.

Anonymous said...

People don't fit into neat little boxes. MSU students and Ole Miss students are often from the same families or at least the same communities and cities. We aren't as different as some people like to think. There are plenty of snobs who go to MSU, just like there are plenty of blue collar people who go to Ole Miss. Don't get caught up in the "grossest generalities."

TMC said...

Anonymous's comments were out of line and don't represent Ole Miss in any way. Football has nothing to do with why you love a school. However, as a student at Ole Miss, your generalizations are unwarranted, and are formed from a lack of experience with the Rebel fanbase.

And there is a sense of hypocrisy when you denounce Ole Miss for feeling superior to MSU while in face stating that as a reason for feeling that MSU is superior to Ole Miss.

TMC said...

fact*

Anonymous said...

Although I appreciate what you're doing in Ukraine for the sake of Christianity, I have never met a minister so easily succumb to judgment and gross generalizations with absolutely no true basis like you've presented in this post. I expect this sort of elementary and naive slander from immature, sheltered people; but not from a minister.

I understand that this blog is for you to post your opinions freely, but please don't fall into the trap of blanket accusations and early judgment on people inside and outside of your own comfort circle -- at least for the sake of Christianity and the continuing spread of the Gospel.

Keep in mind that this blog is public space with your identifying information on it. Such hypocrisy as seen in this post is, in my opinion, the quickest way for others to lose respect in the goals you're trying to accomplish.

Anonymous said...

Although I appreciate what you're doing in Ukraine for the sake of Christianity, I have never met a minister so easily succumb to judgment and gross generalizations with absolutely no true basis like you've presented in this post. I expect this sort of elementary and naive slander from immature, sheltered people; but not from a minister.

I understand that this blog is for you to post your opinions freely, but please don't fall into the trap of blanket accusations and early judgment on people inside and outside of your own comfort circle -- at least for the sake of Christianity and the continuing spread of the Gospel.

Keep in mind that this blog is public space with your identifying information on it. Such hypocrisy as seen in this post is, in my opinion, the quickest way for others to lose respect in the goals you're trying to accomplish.

Vickie said...

Well, my goodness! Folks sure do get upset easily. Anonymous, I think you just colored yourself with a darker shade of the same crayon you were coloring Clinton with! Whew!

This reminds me of the firestorm I inadvertently sparked when I asked my friends on election night to pray for the elections and our country. I was stunned by the response. It appears to me that folks take offense right easily over politics, schools, sports, social issues and such. Two of my friends, an Obama supporter and a Romney supporter, asked me to remove them from all my contact lists, including cell phones. Each questioned whether the other was truly a Christian, given their political affiliations, and each questioned whether I was truly a Christian, since I wasn't sharing their anger and indignation. Please. I am feeling a sense of deja vu here. Salvation issues matter. The rest... not so much.

I don’t get it, and I'm actually glad I don't. I'd be a little bit worried about me if I did.

Reminds me of a quote from one of my favorite country music songs... "I’m for love, I’m for happiness, I’m for not looking for something to make us mad."

Anonymous said...

Clipper T, sing this with me: It only takes a spark to get a fire going... Hahaha! Now you've got a bonfire! I couldn't AGREE with you more with your generalizations. While we both know exceptions, you have very accurately hit the nail on the head with the MSU/OleMiss fan culture here in the Delta. And for the record, I am glad you did not lose any sleep over the heat from the ridiculous firestorm.

Love ya,

Julie D.

PS: I HATE the GTHOM thing. Like I always used to feel like lightning was going to consume the whole student section, cowbells and all.

Anonymous said...

Oh, Clipper, you've got me reminiscing now. Do you remember the sounds of the cowbells every so gently clanging as fans walked to the football game? I LOVED that!

Julie D.

PS: Thanks for checking on the scholarship for Grace's friend.

Anonymous said...

You love cowbells?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, what's not to love???

Julie D.