Thursday, August 7, 2008

Live long and prosper......'tween the hedges

A personal note for my far-flung tailgate compatriots.

Many find my twin obsessions (as evidenced in this post) incongruous. How can you on one hand, own hundreds of geeky sci-fi DVDs; blog incessantly about nerd TV; not shy away from a youth spent building models, reading, writing and illustrating comics and playing D&D in your basement; work out listening to Harry Potter audiobooks; and proudly wear "Dharma Initiative" and "UC Sunnydale" tee shirts to company functions? And yet on the other hand have more UGA football memorabilia than will fit into a tiny temp apartment; cash in millions of Delta miles just to return to home games 'tween the hedges; tailgate like a frat-boy version of Keith Richards; consider "Larry Legend" to be famous for Athens, not Boston; do a dance of joy when the season tickets arrive (to blur the lines, that would be Numfar's dance of joy) and proudly wear UGA logo shirts to company functions?

I've had friends who could recite episodes of Buffy chapter and verse, yet didn't know who the hell Herschel Walker is. And friends who could tell you Frank Sinkwich's collegiate stats, but didn't know what craft is captained by James T. Kirk. You know, in the words of Popeye, "to thine own self be true." Or was it Polonius who said "I yam what I yam?" Whatevs. The point is, I don't find it all that strange to spend all day woofing and drinking and screaming and analyzing the finer points of a no huddle offense and then get to another friend's house after the game, and rejoice because they TiVod the BSG movie "Razor" to watch with me.

Case in point: a few years ago, I was all psyched to attend DragonCon and spend a fantastic Labor Day weekend reveling with my fellow nerds. Of course, that's also the traditional opening kickoff weekend for the Dawgs, but I was bound and determined to leave the hotel in downtown ATL early Saturday morning, tailgate with the best of 'em, go to the game and then leave shortly thereafter to return in time for the geeky merriment that evening. However, the Friday night before the game was the "Buffy Horror Picture Show" party, where they show the classic ep "Once More With Feeling" and dress up and sing along (a la Rocky Horror). We stayed up late getting hammered, and when it was time to drag my ass out of bed, I was moving slowly (it takes a while to get back into tailgating shape, ya know). I decked out in black and red, packed the backpack with radio, media guide, flask, Crown and all the requisite accessories, got in my car and tried to depart the hotel parking garage. As I rolled up to Peachtree Street, my exit was blocked by the DragonCon parade and the troops of the 501st. I watched the stormtroopers go by, and realized there was no way I was gonna make it to Athens. "It's only Western Kentucky (or some other directional school)" I told myself. So I turned the car around, went back to the Con, and spent the afternoon listening to Larry and Lorne and Scott in one ear, and Farscape and Trek panel discussions in the other. When I got back to the tailgate for the game the following week, I caught a lot of shit ("can you say 'Go Dawgs!' in Klingon?"), but did so with a smile on my face. This year, I'm making the Sophie's Choice to follow the Number One Fucking Team In The Land from the get go, and happy about that, too.

However, I'd like honor my geeky heritage while following the Classic City Canines at the season-opening tailgate, and risk crossing the streams.

To that end, I'm proud to announce the

First Annual Dawg-Geek Tailgate Trivia Challenge.

For all our regular tailgaters, the rules are simple:
  1. In rapid fire fashion, I'll fire off 20 questions from the disparate worlds of UGA football lore and nerdly sci-fi/fantasy/superhero arcana.
  2. First contestant to "buzz in" (method TBD) with the right answer gets a point.
  3. A wrong answer earns you a shot of our legendary BullDawg Bites.
  4. Contestant with the most points at the end of the Challenge receives a Grand Prize.
  5. Contestant with the most points in the UGA category receives a prize, and contestant with the most points in the Geek category also receives a prize.
  6. Ties broken by sudden death (hopefully, not from an overdose of Bites).
A perfect way to be firmly planted in one world, yet feel like I'm a part of the other.

Tailgaters, bring your thinking and drinking caps, and I'll see you in Athens. Games begin at 10:45 AM.

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