As a proud parent, today is a day that I look forward to sharing with my daughter every year. For perspective, last year I wrote the following over on Buckeye Planet-
One year ago today (2007), we were flying back from Ethiopia with our newly adopted daughter. On the flight from LA to New York on the way over, I was blessed by watching TTUN collapse against Wisconsin, and then cursed to watch the Buckeyes do the same against the Fighting Zooks (and the refs).
Taking off from Addas Ababa late in the night, we knew that we wouldn’t hear about The Game until it was over. The first thing I did after clearing customs was to find a paper and read excitedly about the 14-3 victory and Beanie’s great day. It was great to share that with our little girl.
My dad had The Game on the DVR, and I thought that watching it while she slept on my chest was just about the greatest thing ever.
Watching “running… tackle” (as she calls it) with my daughter, having her spell out O!H!I!O! after big plays, hearing her say “Beanie”, and getting to jump up and down with her when the Bucks score… it doesn’t get much better than that.
This year, I’ve gotten to see her “grow up” in so many ways, including surprising my wife and I with her version of “We don’t like Mich1gAAn…” while on a hike this summer, and her trying to teach Carmen Ohio to her friends at pre-school.
It’s great to be a Buckeye, but better to be a dad.
So, in keeping with tradition, here’s a reminder of the importance of today (author unknown):
A Dad’s Buckeye Story
This morning, I’m pouring myself a cup of coffee to try and wake up and clear the cob webs out of my head. Suddenly, I hear some fast footsteps charging down the stairs towards the kitchen and realize it has to be one of my four kids. Around the corner comes Cade, my inquisitive seven year old and he has this excited, breathless look about him. In his hand, he’s waving a BrainQuest flash card. It’s one of those “educational” games that we gave him for his birthday that asks all sorts of fun, crazy trivia questions. He loves trying to stump me with some of them and I’m just happy he’s not playing one the mindless video games he’s always after.
Well today he had an all-time stumper. Cade runs over and gives a few tugs on my t-shits and yells, “Dad! Dad! You’re never going to get this one!” I respond by saying- “And good morning to you too Cade, now what have you got?” He looks up at me as I finish pouring my coffee and asks, “What kind of animal is a wolverine? Is it A) a wolf, B) a cat or C) a weasel?”
Now being a true Buckeye myself, I of course know this one but I want to have some fun. So I take a long pause and roll my eyes towards the ceiling – like I’m really pondering the answer. Then I say, well it must be part of the wolf family being that it’s a wolverine. As soon as I say this, Cade gets this great big grin on his face and he exclaims, “Nope! It’s a WEASEL!” And just for reinforcement, he holds the card up to me and announces, “Dad, a wolverine is a weasel!”
It’s in that moment, that I see it. I look into his blue eyes, and it’s apparent that something has clicked – he’s only seven but he now gets it. He studies the card one more time, looks back up at me, shakes his head a few times and utters to me in amazement, “Dad, they’re weasels. They’re just weasels.”
As he finishes, I could feel a lump growing in my throat. My eyes begin to well up and I realize my little boy is growing up – he’s becoming a Buckeye. I reach down, put my arms around him and whisper – “I know son, they’re just weasels. They’re just weasels.”
Welcome to one of the most sacred days of the year: Weasel Stomping Day.