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Exploring the Limits of a College Football Fan's Devotion

Shortly following Georgia's triumph in the Sugar Bowl, I made this observation:

After a late night last night, I had a busy day today, including a team meeting this evening with the high school mock trial squad I am helping to coach. Last night, about five minutes into the Sugar Bowl, one of the students called me about today's scheduled meeting. Being the superstitious fan that I am, I warned her today that she might be required to call me five minutes into every Georgia game from now until the end of time.

(Incidentally, we still need attorneys to evaluate February 16's regional competition in McDonough, in case you're a Georgia lawyer who's available that day and you have not yet e-mailed Shanda DeLay. Thanks.)

The sentiment quoted above got me thinking, though:

To what lengths are we as fans willing to go to engage in game day rituals that supposedly heighten the good mojo of our favorite team?

You know I am all about the mojo-generating game day ritual, but I pose the following hypothetical, which, while fictitious, is not unrealistic:

It's a Saturday morning in the fall. The Bulldogs are playing an important rivalry game between the hedges later that day. My brother-in-law, Travis, and I are going over to Athens for the game.

I arrive at Trav's house, from which we will be departing for the Classic City. I am greeted at the door by my nephew, Drew, who is three years old. Drew, who is fond of tools, has a screwdriver in his hand.

Suddenly, without malice but also without warning, Drew drives the screwdriver into the side of my knee, intending it playfully and meaning no harm yet leaving me standing there like Augustus McCrae after running afoul of the Indians at the end of the epic cattle drive in "Lonesome Dove."

It could have been worse. I could have been speared like Josh Deets.

Fortunately, I have available to me the capabilities of modern medicine, so, unlike Gus, I don't face the prospect of amputation, gangrene, asking Woodrow Call to take my body back to Texas to be buried in an orchard, writing farewell letters to multiple women while in the throes of delirium, and death; rather, I go to the emergency room, get a tetanus shot and some stitches, call my wife on my cell phone to let her know I am all right (by the standards of my past adventures with Travis, such a call would strike her as fairly tame), and am off to Sanford Stadium.

The 'Dawgs proceed to lay a nationally-televised smackdown on a rival team in the Classic City.

Based upon the foregoing scenario, please complete the following sentence:

I should:

(a) conclude that my injury and the outcome of the game were unrelated.
(b) allow Drew to drive a screwdriver into the side of my knee before every subsequent Georgia game.
(c) allow Drew to drive a screwdriver into the side of my knee before every subsequent regular-season Georgia game.
(d) allow Drew to drive a screwdriver into the side of my knee before every subsequent Georgia home game.
(e) only allow Drew to drive a screwdriver into the side of my knee before particularly important Georgia games.

Would your answer be different if my nephew stuck a screwdriver into the side of your knee instead? If so, how? What if it was your spouse's or date's knee? What if it was your best friend's knee? (All right, don't answer that last one; we all know we'd find it hilarious to see a three-year-old innocently plunge a screwdriver into the side of our best friend's knee just on general principle. If it happened to help Georgia win a football game, that'd just be gravy.)


Go 'Dawgs!