….. This is a Tar Heel specific column. …. Our Wuff, Hokie, Deacon, et al readers and our political junkies are welcome to read along…. This is The Official Primer for Enjoying Carolina Football Saturdays in 2007…. I “cheated”. …. I have been sitting down with “The PTBs” getting the straight scoop so my version is likely quite a bit different from what the board monkeys are spreading. …. It usually is. …. GUESS WHAT PRINCE TASSEL LOAFER HAS GONE & DONE !!!
That confounded Little Prince has “done it” NOW. As part of Dickie Baddour’s ongoing strategy to destroy the Carolina Football Experience (??) he has convinced the UNC Facility Development Guys to delay the closing of The Bell Tower Parking Area until AFTER the Home Football Season. Gosh, that’s a “good thing” isn’t it. Yes, it is.
This means all the old, rich guys who give beau coups of $$$$ to support UNC Athletics can park in their usual “old, rich guys” preferred lot and will not displace the “not quite as old or as rich guys” who can now stay in their nice, but not as nice, spaces.
How does this effect “real fans” (cough, cough) like Little Cletus From Lillington or Goofy Gus From Gastonia. It doesn’t. Cletus and Gus and the goggle-eyed doodle bugs from “the boards” are still “loonies non grata”. I hear Wally Wade has plenty of parking spaces. Maybe Joe Alleva wants “Cletus and Gus’s kind”.
On behalf of 95% of Tar Heel Nation …. A resounding HUZZA to “the Dickster” for this shrewd administrative maneuver.
Chapel Hill has always been a very fine place to enjoy college football even when the football wasn’t all that fine …… it continues to be so. It IS a pretty college town and hopefully everyone has at least one friend they can enjoy seeing there. I’m lucky …. I have a lot of friends I enjoy seeing on GAMEDAY in Chapel Hill.
Whilest his ADship was palavering with the “let’s build another parking garage” guys, his staff was scouring the campi and environs and GUESS WHAT THEY FOUND? FOUR HUNDRED NEW PARKING PLACES ….. 400! One here …. Two there …. Three behind that dumpster ….. and before you could say “Officer Swain”, they had 400 new Saturday spaces. Now, I know how they did it, but I can’t tell ya because it’s kinda complicated and most of the spaces belonged to scruffy anarchists with I LUV ELIZABETH & JOHN bumper srtickers on their Yugos.
Those new 400 spaces open up other spaces along the parking food chain ….. but parking for Carolina Football WAS NOT A PROBLEM with / without extra spaces. The Friday Center and University Mall and Southern Village and the other Park & Ride Lots are oh-so-convenient for 95% of Tar Heel Nation that want to enjoy their GameDay Experience. No one needs to park on sidewalks or tear up citizens yards despite what Cletus and his pals say.
So now you’re in Chapel Hill and ready to have a good time. Here’s a little itty bitty secret that you MUST promise not to tell the Shineolas. If you “behave yourself” within quite broad parameters of that term …. NO ONE WILL HASSLE YOU! Neither CHPD nor “campus cops” get extra commissions for tickets written on “gameday”. The last Tailgate Nazi was laid to rest six years ago. Yes, I know Officer Swain lives forever among the Shineolas …. but like Nessie, Sasquatch and Yeti he is “a myth”.
If you must consume alcohol to “have a good time” you simply pour it into a cup and consume away. If you consume “too much” and become a public nuisance and disgraceful embarrassment to your family and friends you might be “dealt with” as well you should be.
In the pecking order of “who to blame for ____ “ George Bush and the aforementioned “Dickie” cover most stuff from floods, infrastructure, weather, and that blinking light on your VCR. What Bush & Baddour are not responsible for usually gets blamed on “them” meaning “those people who run Chapel Hill”. I don’t much care for their politics, assorted sexual preferences, or religion or lack of, but they really do NOT meet long into the night to make life tough for Carolina football fans. They are MUCH too busy trying to impeach George Bush to care about much else.
So now you’re parked, tailgated and headed towards your own version of “the most beautiful stadium” in the Milky Way Galaxy …. or at least in Orange County. Football stadiums are like grilling marinades and babies ….. everybody is convinced “theirs” is somehow more special than anyone else’s. Whatever.
Unless you are parked on South Campus, I recommend Tar Heel Town in Polk Place. You can do silly kid stuff or watch others do silly kid stuff. You can watch the Old Well Walk with the new version featuring “just Butch” instead of “Burly John”. I’m betting the players are dressed differently and won’t be hiding behind their MP3 headphones this year.
The band will be there …. The cheerleaders ….. A Tar Heel Radio Network remote from the Library steps. The Angry Arborist who wanted “those yucky fans” expelled from “his” quad has been “dealt with”. Not a problem any more. I recommended to Sports Marketing Director Michael Beale that he have a “Disembowel A Shineola” booth in Tar Heel Town where normal fans could take turns skinning and gutting a goggle-eyed spittle spewing loonie from “the boards”. Michael said “maybe next year”.
The #1 reason to visit Tar Heel Town this year is that you have to pass right by The Shadow Of The Bell Tower Gang who will be set up where you cross Raleigh Road from the Library to duh “the Bell Tower”. A certain roguish Internet Legend and his cronies will be “making a presence” there. Trust Ol BobLee …. You won’t have a problem finding us or HEARING us. I tested our sound system today and blew out three windows in the Library ….. I’ve ordered a bigger woofer. We got a few “can they do THAT’s” planned plus ya never know who just might drop by pre and post game. ….. still looking for a happy midget who can juggle chain saws. If you know of one, let me know. Long-legged gals in Daisy Dukes are ALWAYS welcomed.
The four hedged-in areas around the Bell Tower will have assorted parties going on each game for reunions and “old rich alums who give lots of $$$$” but don’t paint their faces blue and set their hair on fire.
So now you’re in Kenan Stadium …… New LED boards along the upper deck from the 30 to the 30. You can actually see these during day games. Quite cool.
Jumbo is still Jumbo but Jumbologist Ken Cleary has a few new tricks up his sleeve plus The Pale Rider made a few “suggestions”. Of course, no matter what Jumbo does, Little Cletus and his pals will bitch …. It’s what they do best in life.
The team entrance will be “different” but Cletus and his monkey pals won’t like it. The rest of you will.
The team uniforms are 99% the same as last year. “Just Butch” will make his changes for the ’08 season. See above as regards predictable opinions of “you know who”.
The Kenan souvenir stands are now run by Chapel Hill Sportwear rather than UNC Student Stores. That’s a good thing. Aggressive private enterprise trumps lethargic bureaucrats every time. Expect new and more varied merchandise.
The concession stands will be the same. I never buy anything because I hate standing in lines. “Hate standing in line” ???? Gee, BobLee how do you pee at games? I’m special …. I have access to a VIP restroom at The Alamo.
The sorta new “student section” will be the West End Zone above and around the tunnel. The band has been moved over the tunnel. The area is being marketed as “the Tar Pit” and students are encouraged to wear “whatever color most annoys Cletus and his pals” …. Black should do that. Ideally raucous students will make this end zone (known affectionately by Kenan historians as “where T.A. McClendon is buried”) a rough place for visiting teams to visit. Apparently the sound of coeds applying lip gloss and a bunch of geeky Napoleon Dynamites reciting Monty Python lines can really disturb opposing teams. Who knew?
As always …. Some numbnutz will say ”bring back the card section”. This always gets John Edwards and his ambulance chasing pals excited. One cardboard card sailed into the stands and “putting out someone’s eye” could purchase some trial lawyer a darn fine mansion.
Rick Steinbacher is back “in the booth” with Woody Durham. Some guys will do anything to get out of handing honorary game balls to sponsors! “Steiny” tends to do a darn good job at whatever he does. Deems will be back making outrageous post-game comments. Lee Pace will roam the sidelines trying to convince nubile cheerleaders that he is a Hollywood talent scout. Woody will make up names, numbers and hometowns as always but nobody will care because “he’s Woody”.
Which brings us to The #1 Cussed & Discussed Myth about Carolina Football ….. The “Typical Carolina Football FAN”. Bring in those legendary “blind men” who described the elephant for Rudyard Kipling and let them try to find “that typical fan”. I’ve roamed all over Kenan for years looking for that elusive cuss to no avail.
You know him ….. TAA DAA …. “rich and constipated” …. Not always “old” but definitely not “a real fan” meaning he was alive when Michael hit the jumper in ‘82. He wears his khakis and navy blazer and doesn’t bother to get to his seat until well into the first quarter, then he never leaves his seat until halfway thru the fourth quarter when he gathers his bored wife (Janet), her knitting and his two retallin-overdosed offspring Hunter and Connor and they trudge back to the Beemer for the ride back to whatever fashionable enclave they reside in in “the Triangle”, “the Triad”, or “The Great State of Mecklenburg”. He is either “a lawyer”, “a doctor”, or “a mogul of some sort”. Cletus and his crowd hate “lawyers”, “doctors” and especially “moguls” because they don’t paint their faces blue and set their hair on fire. Board monkeys really hate most anyone who has ever succeeded in much of anything. Even if one’s success was mainly picking the right parents …. “the board monkeys” hate a lot of people.
I’ve been attending Kenan games for 40 years but only in the past seven have I made a concerted effort to find “the typical fan” as described above. BIG NEWS ::::: He Does Not Exist ….. EXCEPT in the Pope Box and Chancellors Boxes. I was actually invited to the Pope Box a few years ago …. Lord knows why, but I was. Yes, there ARE some very very strange folks in those secluded places but they are segregated from any dealings with anyone other than their own kind. Imagine a Snoot Leper Colony. They do ask each other questions like “which one is our team?” and “where’s Choo Choo” and “isn’t Elizabeth Edwards courageous?” …..
My seats are always in Napa Valley (between the 40s) where “that typical fan” supposedly dwells. I’m surrounded by “lawyers”, “doctors”, “moguls” and a feisty old USAF General. They cheer, they cuss, they check out the flipping cheerleaders, they hate the referees, they bitch about TV timeouts, and many of them do indeed blame Dickie for our “crumbling infrastructure”. In other words …. They are just like 95% of the rest of “Carolina fans”. Darn fine folks!
NOTE: 99+% of State fans do not “pee in the stands”, arrive in tractors, or have sex with domesticated farm animals at halftime. “Their fans” are remarkably like Carolina fans ….. except they don’t like a certain retired referee named “Jim Knight” nearly as much as we do. UNC has sold 34,000 season tickets. NC State has sold more than that. I can live with that reality. It does not affect my self-worth even a little bit.
Gotta Luv those Wuffies …. “Tailgate Tommy” and his bunch are actually advertising for red-vested volunteers to spread good sportsmanship in the Carter-Finley lots. I sent in three applications ….. under the names Jason Voorhees, Freddie Kruger and Bruce Poulton.
I am looking forward to a WONDERFUL FOOTBALL SEASON. “My team” will win some, lose some and hopefully none will be rained out. I’m OK with hot, cold, day or night …. But I don’t like rainy games.
I look forward to sharing laughs and old stories with old friends and meeting lots of NEW FRIENDS. You probably fit in one of those two categories.
I will park at The Friday Center …. Tailgate “in The Shadow Of The Bell Tower” …. And enjoy my seat in “Napa Valley”. I will be at 11 of the 12 games (not going to South Florida).
If we have not yet met in person …. And you see someone on Gameday who looks like me, walk up to him and say “BobLee, I’m your biggest fan!”. If it IS me, you’ll get a hearty handshake. If it’s not, you’ll get a strange look …. Either way you’ll have a story to tell ….. and that’s what life is all about any way.
“Aye Zigga Zoomba Zoomba Zay”
OK …. you all know Jason and Freddie ….
but who was Bruce Poulton?
Yes …. It WAS Bill Buckner in Left Field when Hank hit #714. That Bill Buckner!
The very evil empire of “Dirty Don” Beason has fallen. Sparked no doubt by our courageous outing of the slimey weasel over the past several weeks, he has lost all his clients and had his fondling privileges revoked at Big Ed’s. Even the N&O’s “Jimmy Olson” …. Ryan Teague Chatsworth Osbourne Beckwith the IV has taken to daily Beason Bashing. Yo Ryan …. Where were you guys over the past five years …. Huh?
Meanwhile out at Hypocrite Manor on Old Greensboro Road, Courageous Elizabeth is firing off daily insults like bottle rockets at pretty much everybody then hiding behind her IV drip …. “you better not say bad things about me (or my husband “Whatshisname”) …. I have cancer you know.” Yeah, sure Lizzie …. wink, wink.
To all you BobLee Buddies who sent Birthday well wishes to your favorite Internet Legend earlier this week ….. I sold your e-addresses to the Dennis Kucinich campaign.
Remember me telling you about the Randy Parton Theatre Scam in Roanoke Rapids. WELLLL, Ol’ “Her Brother” is playing to LOTS of empty seats. The new #1 recreational activity in Halifax County is riding thru the parking lot and counting cars. There are NO buses. Randy and his scam buddies have the band and roadies park “out front” so there is some sign of live at the place. Even Randy’s daughter “Heidi Lou” (no, I am NOT making up her name …. “Heidi Lou”) is asking to be paid BEFORE they go on. But …. it doesn’t matter ….. Randy gets his $1,000,000 anyway ….. Thank You Richard Moore!
One of my pals just bought a $400,000 car and a $50,000,000 airplane. I bought a new Aloha shirt for Gameday and Prince Albert sent me a birthday poem …. We’re both lucky guys.