• 61°

Football's taken seriously down in the South

By Staff
Jim Grammer, When it was a game
Who was it that said, "success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan?"
I know John Kennedy used that phrase at one time, but I'm not sure if he was quoting someone else or not.
Anyway, nowhere is this term more true than here in the South. It doesn't apply so much to politics or diplomatic affairs as it does to sports – especially football.
We take our football serious down here, just pick up any local newspaper at pretty much any time of year and there's some article that pertains to football.
I don't care if it's mid-December or the first day of June; there'll be something that has to do with football.
People in other parts of the Country don't quite understand us down here in Dixie, but that's just fine 'cause I don't understand them, and don't really want to. They don't understand that a 7 and 5 year is a disaster down here in Alabama.
They also don't understand why there's so much media attention when a head coach of the State University goes to a golf tournament and whores around. Happens all the time in other parts of the Country, probably because no one there knows who the coach is and no one cares.
I believe that Southerners have a deep-rooted hatred of defeat. The very thought of losing is hateful to us down here in the South. It seems to be bred into us from generation to generation.
I believe that we carry a gene that is somewhat unique and is responsible for several characteristics that make us different from other Americans.
This genetic make-up causes us to speak more slowly and precisely so that what we say is completely understood rather than a bunch of gibberish that has to be repeated several times so everybody can understand. This gene causes us to be more polite to our fellow man.
It makes us wave at a total stranger when we pass them in our car. It causes us to be more humble.
We, down here in the South, don't have the tendency to priss around and show off. It causes us to be more loving and respectful and to cherish family values.
It makes us put the suffixes, "ma'am and sir," at the end of the words yes and no. It makes us love our Country, even though our ancestors fought against it. It makes us proud to be an American and makes us willing to fight to keep it.
But most importantly, this tiny little gene makes us hate losing. This gene probably originated from the offspring of the southern veterans of the Civil War. Ever since that time, Southerners have hated losing. And since that time, Southerners have had the determination that if it's worth fighting and dying for, it better be worth winning.
Yea, we take our football seriously down here, but if you look close enough you'll see we take a lot of other things seriously, too. People in other parts of the Country don't think these other things are important, either.
* Jim Grammer is The Hartselle Enquirer's weekly columnist. He has a book now available called "The Long Gravel Road to 'Bama." Copies can be bought at The Book Cellar in Hartselle.