Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Griz vs. the Loggers by Paige Singleterry, Guest Blogger





Paige Singleterry, Guest Blogger, HR Generalist, Best Friend, Avid cheese-lover, Former Logger, Current Griz Fan


First of all, as a guest blogger,’ I feel it my duty to defend my actions since the inception of this blog. I read Lizzie’s blog religiously and never comment. The reason for this is that my work has some pretty intense firewalls and I don’t have internet access at home. When I check my email at Lizzie’s house…. I feel silly commenting to a person’s blog who is sitting right next to me. So Lizzie, ever desperate to get me involved has asked me to guest blog. So here goes…

Lizzie has already blogged about a mere fraction of our homecoming adventure that was last weekend. The portion that I would like to cover in more detail is the Logger football game that we attended. But first, a little history on me and my relationships with sports and spectators…

I am a high school athlete, 6’1” and tremendously uncoordinated. I played varsity volleyball and basketball and was literally the 3rd tallest person in my school…. Yes that would include boys as well. I overcame my lack of coordination by working my ass off and practicing 3-4 hours a day and playing to my strengths. I only played front row in volleyball because I was the number 1 blocker in the state of Colorado, but I averaged 3 out of 10 serves going over the net and couldn’t get low enough to play defense. I wasn’t allowed to dribble in basketball. You all think I exaggerate, but I would literally have to run sprints if I dribbled… and for good reason because I would typically lose the ball. However, I was the 3rd ranked rebounder in the state. You get the picture…

I have a lot of empathy for athletes because I got a lot of crap from 28-55 year old men in my small town wearing their high school letterman’s jackets cornering me and asking me why I “screwed up that play”, “missed that shot”, “tripped over my feet”…I felt like screaming at them that I did not intend to do these things…. If I had my way I would have glided down the court like a gazelle and made every basket....

My husband, Justin, teases me because I get upset at him when he yells at people for their screw-ups. He loves to tell the story about when I looked over at him with a look of pure rage and screamed at him, “Why don’t you get out on the field you jackass if you feel you can do it so much better!”

I am also an avid football fan. I’ve never really been loyal to one team because I was raised by my step dad who is a sports-a-holic and only loyal to the Dodgers Baseball team. Every Sunday, Clint and I would retire to the living room to watch football to our hearts content. Clint, having played football in college, taught me about the game and I still have a passion for watching football. In my years since I have moved out of the house, I have found that I miss watching football and long for the days on my family’s couch getting the play-by-play from my step dad.

So last year, Justin went to three or four Griz games and we decided this year that we are going to be fans…. And by fans I mean we invested in ‘griz gear,’ will do almost anything to get a ticket to the game, and plan BBQ’s around every away game. I thoroughly enjoy my new passion for the Griz. The games are fantastic, the tailgates are a blast, the fans are very supportive (not crazy like my previous High School interactions) and Justin is an alumni and so I feel like I fit in at least a little bit.

In visiting UPS, I noticed a few key differences between Griz Homecoming and Logger Homecoming:

1. U of M had a huge parade that lasted hours and went through the whole downtown area while UPS had a sign up booth for alumni in their student center.
2. U of M has a literal gauntlet of tailgaters. They come with their RV’s and rope off fields upon fields to tailgate, which involves burgers, hotdogs, classic rock music, beer and whiskey beginning in the wee small hours of the morning. U of M also has a school bus that picks up people from sports bars downtown who have been drinking since 8AM so they don’t get a DUI while UPS has an annual homecoming brunch. This brunch is alcohol free with a Jazz band that plays softly for attendees. It’s an extremely quiet and classy affair.
3. U of M has a huge stadium, ticket scalpers and sets records for attendance while UPS has one set of small bleachers and seats are always available.
4. U of M has a huge halftime show with a marching band, they shoot off a cannon every time a touchdown is made and they literally shoot souvenirs into the stand with a rocket gun while UPS has their halftime show on the track that surrounds the field and you can barely hear it.
5. The Griz team plays extremely clean and I can follow the game very easily while the Loggers are sloppy and fall all over themselves and the other team, making the game hard to follow.
6. Finally, the Griz win, while the Loggers typically do not as they lost their homecoming game 60-7.

I feel like I have the best of both worlds being a current Griz Fan as well as a Logger Alumni. I wouldn’t trade my time at UPS for the world. There were plenty of “ups and downs” I grant you, but I met some of my best friends in the world, got a killer education, a lot of individual attention, tons of financial aid (thank God) and got to live in a beautiful area for four years. And… as an empathetic sports viewer, the Loggers gave it their best and if I was out there, I know I couldn’t do any better. I played flag football on Thanksgiving 2006 and I was sore for a whole week! How times have changed since I was in High School…

3 comments:

Katie said...

Paige! I hear you w/ the tallness, uncoordination, vball skills & small men. I remember the basketball team at my HS trying to recurit me to play-but I told them they did not WANT me on their team. Same with the rowing team at OSU-but I denied them but only because of simple laziness at that point. Hooray for tall women!

Elissa said...

Nice, I enjoy the guest blogging. I hope to someday share this prestigious honor with Paige. Hint hint.

Anonymous said...

Go Griz!! Could it be that there is more to do of an, er, mentally rigorous nature, near UPS, as compared to U of M? You can go to the football game or go shoot something. Nice comparison of the environments, however. A. Grove