|Day 25 of 31 at TWT!|
Now, I know what you're thinking: How did my dad manage to get floor burns on his knees while merely watching our scrappy starting point guard leap, dive, and slide after loose balls? Obviously, you've never watched an Ohio State football or basketball game at my parents' house. I promise you've never seen anything like it.
Stage 1: At the beginning of the game, the house is fairly normal. Well, normal considering what it will be like later. Daddy is hunched forward on the couch (he will never stay there) in open-mouthed anticipation. The announcers' commentary is punctuated by my mom's pounding footsteps as she paces around the kitchen, incessantly muttering "I can't watch, I can't watch!" Daddy grabs the remote and turns up the volume a few clicks, scooting forward several inches to the edge of the couch.
Stage 2: As soon as the game gets going, THUD! Daddy whomps himself down from the couch onto the floor. Initially, he'll sit against the couch, wedging my mom's "Big Red Pillow" behind his back. That lasts until the first big play, when he'll flop forward on his stomach, swinging the Big Red Pillow forward so he can prop his elbows up on it. Another big play? His powerful runner's legs propel him closer to the tv like a sprawled-out frog until he's only a foot away from the screen. (Thus, the floor burns on his knees!) While this is going on, Mommy alternately runs into the room, sits on Daddy's vacated spot on the couch, buries her head in her hands, springs up and storms away to pace again.
State 3: You can't even begin to imagine what happens if OSU scores a touchdown, recovers a fumble or interception, dunks the ball, blocks a shot, etc. Have you seen those sports bar commercials where the team scores and all the guys (Why are they always men? Haven't these people met my mom?) jump up, raise their arms, and start wildly high-fiving each other? That's tame compared to my parents. Daddy pounds the floor with his feet, rolls onto his back and rocks around in a ball, then leaps up and pumps his arms up and down while recapping the play for my mom in decibel levels that would require most people to get out their earplugs. (As if she didn't see it, which isn't true! Through all the pacing and stomping and head-burying, she's either watching the tv in the family room with us or the one in the bedroom upstairs, which she's turned on just for the purpose of being able to storm up there.) Mommy screams "WOOOOOO!", gallops into the room, and does a little dance. Then they start the high-fiving and hugging.
Stage 4: At halftime, Daddy (who loves food as much as he loves his Buckeyes) gleefully prances into the kitchen to whip out whatever secret snack he's gotten for the game: a special dessert, nacho cheese dip, etc. He proudly chants the name of the dish, interspersed with "woo-woo-woo!", as he puts it into some sort of Ohio State or football/basketball-shaped serving dish. Even if it's 11:00 p.m. and we're not hungry, we all have to enthusiastically eat the special surprise while assuring him of how delicious it is.
Stage 5: Throughout the second half of the game, repeat stages 2-3. If something bad happens to OSU, just envision Stage 3 but in utter despair: about the same jumping and stomping, but with angry/sad noises instead of joyous ones. If it's a close game (like last night's intense battle against Syracuse!), the dancing and writhing and shouting have now reached the point that an alien observer would assume my parents were caught in the midst of some horrible torment.
Stage 6: As the game clock winds to 0:00, the room either dissolves into utter chaos or silent disappointment. Last night was the epitome of chaotic spectacle: Mommy dove onto the floor to hug Daddy as they flailed their arms and legs, screaming "FINAL FOUR! FINAL FOUR!" The news cameras filming the team's celebration would have gotten better footage in our family room.
"This is why we can't go to a sports bar to watch the game!" Mom laughs. I wouldn't want to. My parents' house is so much more fun!