Making A Statement

I went to the BYU football game this weekend.

You may not understand what a big deal that is. See, I was a USC student who did all his laundry in the dorms during the football games because there was nobody else around. I decided early on in my academic career that I would avoid football games at all costs, because I was Making A Statement.

I wish I could remember what that Statement was.

I used to make a lot of Statements. I used to take a lot of stands. Like the time I refused my nomination as Vice Versa King for the girl’s choice Vice Versa dance during my senior year in high school. The problem was they had already printed the ballots when I Made My Statement. I was the Senior Class President, so my job included distributing the ballots in individual classrooms – ballots that had my name crossed off in see-through ink.

So naturally, everyone wanted to know why my name was scratched off the ballot. I told them I was Making A Statement. (I think, on that occasion, the real Statement was that no girl had asked me to the Vice Versa Dance.)

As Senior Class President, it was also my job to crown the Homecoming Queen. The problem was that I didn’t have a date to the Homecoming Dance. I think I was Making A Statement then, too – I maintained that school dances were for more bourgeoisie folk, and they symbolized some kind of oppression or something. I can’t really remember. I do remember, however, feeling too socially awkward to actually ask a pretty girl to go out with me.

That’s a Statement, all right, but not the one I intended to make.

That was one of the worst nights of my life. I showed up to the dance in a suit and did the honors, crowning our lovely Homecoming Queen with all the requisite pomp and circumstance, and then I ducked out the back door and made a break for it. Some friends of mine told me they had come outside to say hello to me, and they saw me in the distance as I ran toward my car and then pealed out of sight.

I tried to strike a blow against bourgeoisie oppression, but sometimes screeching tires make our Statements for us.

So, anyway, back to the BYU thing. My Statement to avoid college athletics has lasted my entire lifetime, and I’m now 40 years old. This was, in fact, the first college football game I had ever attended. How sad is that? Pretty sad. Not as sad as UCLA’s performance in that game, though – they lost 59 to zip.

That’s a Statement nobody should ever be forced to make.

Jacqui Landrum: 1943-2008
Easy Money

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