Blowing in the Wind

Published: Thursday, February 13, 2014 at 09:09 AM.

            I didn’t watch the Super Bowl. It has gotten to be more “show” than football. That is not an indictment for modern times nor is it a vote for old people in a kinder, gentler setting. It’s just an unadulterated fact. And to watch a sporting contest just to see the commercials seems backwards to me.

            The noteworthy thing for me and this year’s Super Bowl was the Roman numerals behind it. You talk about sobering! I remember the first “Super Bowl” like it was yesterday. Republicans and Democrats were still talking to each other. The Beatles hadn’t met Sgt. Pepper. Folks were beginning to realize that Viet Nam wasn’t going away. Jimmy Hoffa was on trial for attempting to bribe a jury. And you could buy a hamburger, fries and a drink at most any drive-in for less than a buck. 

            I was fighting some battles of my own in January of 1967. College was hard. The cold, windswept Cumberland Plateau didn’t help. Professors who thought you should show up knowing everything on the first day AND then improve each week thereafter were hard to bear. Advanced mathematics and quantitative sciences didn’t even speak English. Nor, of course, did the Latin class.

            The established National Football League had merged with the upstart (but very rich) American Football League. This first championship game was certainly uncharted waters; much like my life. I was young and also feeling my way along. College was supposed to help, wasn’t it?

I was working on my “open mind” and “inner feelings” when the food riot broke out at Gailor Hall. The dining room looked like something out of “Beowulf” with its mammoth size, stone walls and high glass windows. I was eating my English peas and minding my own business when the roast beef begin to fly. Rolls were bouncing off the chandeliers. Tables were turned up on end for shields as butter sticks, Brussels sprouts, fudge brownies and globs of mashed potatoes filled the air.

College boys blowing off steam was the main defense in the aftermath. I was thinking nothing in life could prepare you for this! Most everybody involved just saw the humor of it…….. I pondered deep into the night on perceptional connotations versus behavioral modification. And I remembered how often Dad had said, “Get that college education, son, nobody can take it away from you”!   

I was learning not everything in the world is always what it seems to be.

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