Disclaimer. Yes. I am fully aware it's WE ARE. I only use the OUR instead of ARE to poke a little innocent fun at another publication who, years ago, went to print with ‘WE OUR’ as their headline. Oops. Dang autocorrect.
So I was standing in line patiently waiting for the next porta john. It was brisk afternoon at Beaver Stadium and there wasn't much conversation amongst the people as it is against protocol. But then I had a sudden urge to break the ice with gentlemen behind me decked out in his Michigan State gear. I waited for that perfect moment and cried out WE OUR! The response was staggering as we made that Spartan fan feel right at home. I ended our friendly banter with a simple THANK YOU!
Moments later I found myself alone. My so-called friends disappeared after I ran into my third acquaintance. Sure, I told them to go on ahead but then it happened again. And again. Next thing you know I just spent twenty minutes talking with some old chums about a golf tournament or a clever Facebook post.
By now I am totally lost. My mates are nowhere to be found. I start crashing other tailgates and make a few new friends, but it's getting closer to game time. I don't have my ticket and I start to panic. I check my phone. No service. I continue to weave through fancy Winnebagos and souped up RVs. Still no sign of my pals. Instead of calling out to them by names I am now walking around frantically screaming WE OUR at the top of my lungs. I get tons of responses, but not the one I was looking for. WE OUR! Bob? WE OUR! Marc? WE OUR! Nick? Then there was a miracle as I heard a distant shout. "Hey Spence. We OUR over here." I found them just in time.
The Penn State Nittany Lions went on to steam roll the Michigan State Spartans 45 to 12 that evening. And with Ohio State knocking off Michigan earlier that meant James Franklin and the boys punched their ticket to the Big Ten Championship next week in Indianapolis. After a 2-2 start. Who would have thought?
Beaver Stadium was rocking and I must have yelled WE OUR 100 more times. I was definitely that guy. I was leading the cheers, giving hugs to random strangers and even posing for pictures. I was so excited for my now favorite team. I have never experienced State College like I did that night. It was absolutely insane. Total bedlam. WE OUR!
I have been to many great Penn State games over the years but I have never experienced so much fun. The environment was outstanding and only those who were there can relate. It was a cray. Just an amazing atmosphere.
Yes. The pregame festivities in Happy Valley are legendary across the nation. Very few can even come close to the Nittany Nation scene. It is no shocker that Penn State was recently been tabbed as having the "best tailgate in college football” by USA Today. THEY OUR! See what I did there? Go state. Cheers. To be continued. Rose Bowl anyone?