In reply to: The broken link: What has ND's football tradition meant to you? posted by Board Ops
When I was alone as a child, I listened to the local radio talk about the Golden Domers and their struggles the past Saturday, which would provide the solid foundation for a sure-fire victory this week, and I watched each Saturday from my father's bended-knee and my Mother's caressing hand.
When I was alone as a teenager, I sat in a stranger's living room in Muncie, Indiana, fulfilling my duties as class president on a trip to the state student council convention, watching and crying as the final pass from Charlie Ward was knocked down in the endzone, and students stormed the field and Lou was stoic, all celebrating the day that the numbers changed.
When I was alone as a senior in high school, I nursed a sore wrist injury caused by the turf at the Hoosier Dome during our eventual victory in the Indiana High School State Championship, and friends and family surrounded me to give congratulations and salutations, and I watched from across the hotel lobby over their heads the small monitor where Notre Dame was losing to USC in California, and I was depressed.
When I was alone as a high-school graduate, I just made my college choice to my father, who cried and then hugged me close after the words, "Notre Dame" slipped from my lips.
When I was alone as a student, I reached down and ripped out a handful of green grass stained with white, and I placed it in my pocket, then I joined the throngs as we exited the House that Rockne Built and shared one last moment with our now former coach, Lou.
When I was alone as a junior, head buried in a test-booklet, trying to decide whether Mary would sit next to Jim if she did not like Ann and Andy, I listened and watched from my seat the jubilation of a Saturday home game against Oklahoma, and the mere 2 hours that I would have to endure before joining my brothers and sisters in Our Lady.
When I was alone as a law school student, I cheered and ran up and down the stairs and turned on the fight song and woke up my sleeping roomates as I watched Arnaz Battle streak for a touchdown on the first play from scrimmage in Florida.
When I was alone, I can close my eyes and feel the brittle wood of my square-foot on the bench, hear the trumpets and horns bellow from the corner of the endzone songs that I've known my whole life, sense the awe, admiration, and dedication to the sport and the legends who have come and gone and are still being made, and I can see the bright blue sky, the cheering masses, the flying flag, and the gleam that never shined brighter than when it came off of eleven golden helmets streaking down the field.
When I was alone, Notre Dame football was always with me.