Monday, October 1, 2007

Aggie Religion

If you know anything about Texas, you may know that football is big here. That works out well for me, as I grew up in Canton, Ohio, birthplace of American Football. While I wouldn't characterize myself as a sports nut, I did grow up watching NFL every Sunday. When I went to college in Indiana, I found that Hoosiers live and breathe basketball. It was enough of a different language that I lost the thread of football and sports altogether for a long time.

Add to that a college town where students, and by proxy anyone who lives here, are considered the “12th Man” on the team, where nobody in an 80,000 seat stadium sits for the duration of a game, where each year level is given their own cheer and motion to perform during the game, and you practically have the elements of a religious movement. Aggies even pledge that “Aggies never lie, cheat, or steal, and they don't tolerate those who do.” There is a kind of spirit here that is not found very many other places, I believe.

And I have found that not only do I not mind, but I quite enjoy it. For most of my life I lived in places that didn't have a strong dominant culture other than American. And now here, we are in a place where we can enjoy the cultural flavor of the region and even allow ourselves to join it!

Sure, we aren't official Aggies. We didn't attend, and we don't have the rings (it's a bit of a fanatic club, but it's all in good fun). What we have going for us are two children. I think we will be on probation as true Texans and residents of this fine town, for the next 15 years until our children begin to choose whether they will attend here. Of course I will encourage their self-expression, but I laughed the other day that it wouldn't be too difficult for my children not to ever realize they have a choice!

Despite being a transplant, I was reassured by one bright-eyed coed last month that I live here, so we are accepted as Aggie fans. So Whit and I went down to the tent sale last weekend (they have one the weekend of every home game) and got ourselves geared up for the game that was televised Saturday. They won, but even more important, I found myself proud to be part of something that (almost) everyone in this town shares.

Gig 'em Ags!

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