This is me...

This is me...
I'm having a mom moment....

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Toomer's Corner

I am extremely saddened by the actions of a deranged man claiming to be an Alabama fan. Toomer's Corner is where Auburn fans gather to celebrate victories for the school -- not just football. The trees that grow there have been there for 130 years -- 12 years longer than the Alabama/Auburn rivalry which started 118 years ago next week (Feb. 22, 1893). I have been an Auburn fan since I was about 8 -- the only one in my family. Although I graduated from Bama and now live in Texas, I still wear my Auburn jersey, fly my Auburn flag in front of my house, and taught all 4 of my kids to say "War Eagle" right after they learned "mama." I do not understand this level of hatred.

I am trying to remember that this was the act of one deranged individual and NOT indicative of the entire fan base..... kinda hard to remember that when I see "some" Bama "fans" (and I use that term loosely) celebrating this act of hatred towards our traditions. Several Bama "fans" have not only condoned, but have agreed with this moron's actions as retaliation for someone placing an Auburn National Championship sticker on Bear Bryant's statue and duct-taping a Cam Newton Jersey to it. The obliteration of an icon, landmark, and ultimately of a tradition cannot be compared to placing a sticker or a jersey on a statue. Those were harmless pranks which were easily and quickly cleaned up as if they had never happened. Other's laugh at it and say that it is "just a couple of trees" -- they obviously wouldn't feel that way if it were one of their team's traditions that had been vandalized. As a good friend said about this type of reaction, "It's like laughing at someone who kicks dogs just because I'm a cat person. Ridiculous!"

To help put this in perspective for theose of you not from the South, this is a quote from the City of Auburn's page about Toomer's Corner: "One of the City of Auburn’s most recognizable landmarks, Toomer's Corner is at the intersection of College Street and Magnolia Avenue in the heart of the City of Auburn. With Toomer’s Drugs, an Auburn landmark since 1896, facing what has since 1856 been the anchoring corner of Auburn’s campus, Toomer’s Corner is the nexus of campus and city life. Nowhere is Auburn’s unique spirit, history or identity stronger than at Toomer’s Corner."

So, I find myself praying to God to save a couple of trees.  It isn't that I am ONLY praying for the trees -- it is just one of many things that I am praying for.  "Al from Dadeville" better hope that the feds find him before Auburn fans do. Auburn has one of the best agricultural schools in the country -- if anyone can save these trees, this tradition, and this symbol of Auburn pride, it is us. WDE!!!

Toomer's Corner after it was rolled for the National Championship win in January.  We didn't know it, but the trees had already been poisoned.

My 4 kids in their jerseys in October 2009

What Is It With Me And Bugs?

Okay, here’s a shocker: I don’t like bugs. I don’t like bugs, and I don’t like spiders. I can handle lizards, frogs, even snakes, but if you are smaller than my hand and have more legs than my dog, you are my enemy. I loathe and detest you and every member of your family. I can deal with ladybugs and butterflies, and the occasional moth (as long as it isn’t the kind that dive bombs your head for no apparent reason). I don’t even like ants. I had an ant on my finger and I was showing it to my kids “See? Look at the little legs. God made this creature just like God made – HOLY $%&^! IT BIT ME!” Needless to say my kids will have some interesting therapy sessions when they get older since I cursed and squished the ant into oblivion right before their eyes. Then for a week afterwards I had a huge festering sore on my finger (since I am allergic to anything that bites), and Lorelei (the 4 year old) kept asking if God had given me that boo-boo on my hand for killing the ant.

For Halloween, I bought a dozen plastic spiders about the size of my palm to decorate our mailbox and front porch. The kids all loved them and played with them for weeks after Halloween was over. One day I was picking up the mess that is a constant in my house and I reached down and quickly grabbed what I believed to be one of the harmless plastic spiders from Halloween. It wasn’t. I don’t know about the rest of the country, but here in Texas we have something called the Wolf Spider. These guys are basically harmless and eat bugs (which I applaud) but they are HUGE SPIDERS and therefore they must die. The one I grabbed rather aggressively asserted himself to not be made plastic by climbing out of my hand and up my arm. It really is too bad that there wasn’t a camera on me because I moved in a way that scientists would have had a hard time explaining. You probably would have had to slow down the film to figure out that I was flinging Mr. Counter Attack onto the floor and squishing him with my daughter’s favorite Dora the Explorer book. The amount of adrenaline that coursed through my system in the 2.8 seconds that this happened took hours to dissipate. I was shaking, little sweat beads formed on my upper lip, my pupils dilated, and my eyes were in constant movement. I am certain that I was more hyped up than a meth addict and probably twice as dangerous. Luckily, the kids were all at school when this happened so there was no witness to this total breakdown and I had mostly returned to normal by the time they had gotten home. I took a shower for about 45 minutes – until all of the hot water was gone – and I had to shake out my towel before I used it and every stitch of clothing before getting dressed (just to be sure no relatives were plotting their revenge and lying in wait for me).

In the late Spring there are literally THOUSANDS of these brown bugs called Japanese Beetles that flock towards any light source as if they are trying to cross over into some kind of bug nirvana. They fly around in a drunken stupor colliding with each other and anything else that may be in their vicinity. I do not know where they got their name, but “Japanese Beetle” seems a bit insulting to the Japanese – perhaps a better name would have been Kamikaze Beetles since they dive bomb my head, getting tangled in my hair and causing total devastation to my dignity. But you sort of expect to run into bugs when you are outside. I am deathly allergic to bees and wasps and yet, every time I am outside with a group of people they only buzz around ME – like I am some kind of flower or something. At which point I jump around like I am possessed or engaged in some tribal dance in order to avoid being stung. And I am sure we have all had our own encounter with the gnats that swarm around your head but you are the only one that can see them so you look like you are reacting to some sort of hallucination as you swat, bob and weave to try and get away.

I don’t know what it is about bugs, but it seems that the more you hate them, the more often you encounter them. Some of you will surely remember the story from last May when I was molested in my bed by a huge roach (if you don’t, feel free to go back and read it anytime), then there was the ant and the spider, and every year there are the beetles and the bees and wasps. Don’t even get me started on the mosquitoes that leave half-dollar sized whelps wherever they bite me or the weird little hopper bugs that invade my back porch ever year in the late Summer. You would think that with such an intense hatred for bugs, that I would welcome the presence of spiders. I mean, after all, they eat thousands of bugs throughout the course of their lifetimes. But the truth is, I prefer a good ole can of Raid – or a rather large shoe.