Friday Night Lights... It's REAL!

Last Friday evening, Steve and I attended our first Texas Homecoming football game with our friend Cara. She's a subsitute teacher at Northwest High School, which is the school our kids would go to - if we had any teenagers.

I've heard all kinds of crazy things about Texas football. I've even witnessed a few oddities here and there. However, I've never quite experienced a Texas Homecoming game in all of it's hugeness. And oh my - hugeness it was!

Seriously!

Let's start with Texas Mums, aka Homecoming Mums, aka big honkin' flowers, bigger than basketballs which are loaded with oodles of long flowing and glittery ribbons, longer than the girls are tall, with all kinds of charms, noise makers, lights, and feather boas. Seriously.

Now, I'm not knocking them, but for a Texas transplant (such as I) it is quite a different thing to see. Some were sewn to bra straps. Some were worn like backwards back packs. All kinds of ways, all kinds of crazyness!

Then... there's the football game.

If there are two lessons I definitely learned Friday night, they are:
  1. There's no such thing as a 5th down. How did I learn this you ask? Well, silly me asked my dear wonderful husband what the whole 5th down thing was about. You see, I was trying to learn about football - especially since it's such a big thing down here in Texas. Everyone who heard me ask (and oh how the bleachers are packed like sardines of fans), turned to look in compete shock. So, of course, everyone made sure I now know that there is no such thing as a 5th down. It goes 1st - 4th down - marking the sections of the football field.

  2. Ummm be sure who your team is, and what end of the field they should be scoring on before you leap up and cheer for the first score of the game - which just happens to be for the opponent. Yes, we're seated in the heart of Northwest fans... and yes, I'm sure there were plenty of thought death threats sent my direction.

Other than that, the game itself was highly un-entertaining. The cheerleaders were not anywhere near for us to see. The sound system was terrible.

The half time show though, was AWESOME!!!! Seriously awesome! The dance team girls came out onto the field with their fathers. Their fathers were dressed in jeans with suspenders and flannel plaid shirts. The girls were dressed in darling blue and white checkered smock style dresses with red sparkly shoes on - all of course depicting Dorothy from "The Wizard of Oz".

The music they chose to dance to was "Get on Down the Road" from 'The Wiz' (how I do love that movie musical!). It was SOOOOOO fun to watch the fathers dance with their daughters. They obviously didn't have a lot of practice time, but they did very well. The dance team was adorable.

When it was over I told Steve that if we had a girl, I would pay to make sure she participated in something like that. The guy in front of us told his wife he would pay to NOT participate in something like that.

I know that if I was a student at Northwest, I would have paid to have been able to participate in something like that. And I know my dad would do it with me - in a quarter heartbeat!

A few other things I learned while watching the game, and the people:

They really are SERIOUS about football around here. I actually heard a father say "what, you don't want to play FOOTBALL??!!" Little girls are dressed up as cheerleaders - and I'm talking about LITTLE girls all the way up through middle school aged girls. Parents are dressed to the hilt in school colors - and they even have reserved seating and box seats for these games. In fact, some people even buy the suites! You know, the windowed in seating with air conditioning and food service?! Nuts! This isn't professional football people - we're talking high school. And... not a very good team at that. In fact, I think they're at the bottom of their district.

All in all, it was a fun time, lots of learning, and lots of laughs. What else can you expect when a girl who's never really watched an American high school football game tries to fit in? One thing is for sure though, I have lot of learning to to do about Texas football before any of our (or our friends) kids get into school.

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