I don't like to leave Columbus. It's where my home is. It's where my Buckeyes play. It is where seven Saturdays this fall I joined 105,000 other fans in the greatest venue in sports, The Shoe.
I especially don't like to leave Ohio to the north. I hate Michigan. I was breed to hate Michigan. My parents, my siblings, my friends, and the rest of the people I associate myself with, hate Michigan. In Ohio we are raised to despise the team from up north.
So I decided to make the sacrifice and head up to the city known as Ann Arbor. It was me, my friends Kobee, Andy, and Todd. We left Friday evening around 4:30 arriving three hours later to our hotel, The Lamp Post Inn. The hotel was around two miles from the stadium. After we settled in we started drinking. You almost have to in Michigan, the place smells like sewer water.
We then decided to head to the bars. We took a cab to campus to arrive at a bar named Ashleys. We stood in line for fifteen minutes before the host told us that we could go to the downstairs bar and forgo the line. Kudos to you for making us stand outside in the cold before making this information available. So we then headed to the downstairs bar where we were surprised to be greeted with a good amount of I-O's to our O-H's.
The Bar was actually a neat little place. The place basically looked like a taller version of a basement at a 75 year old house. It had a bar that took about a quarter of the space, a golden tee machine, and a couple tables. We settled in on one side of the bar ordering import after import until you couldn't tell the girls where from Michigan. That's when two girls invited us to a house party. We told them we would be over then once we grabbed a cab we decided that going back to the room was probably in our best interest.
We went to bed sometime around two or tree. We then awoke at 7am for the start of what would be a crazy day. I walked to the lobby to get breakfast. This breakfast went in but came right back out. You know your in for a treat when you are still drunk from the night before. I thought, to hell with it, so me and Kobee officially started off game day with two ice cold Miller Lites at 7:28am. Here we go.
We pound a couple more brews before heading to the stadium. So between the for of us we manage to walk the two miles to the golf course right across the street from the stadium. This is where we met up with my buddies Tidd and Bryce. They are both Michigan fans. I only tolerate this because they have a sweet tailgate spot. It was actually fun and most of the fans were actually pretty nice. The occasional fan would walk by yelling obscenities at our scarlet and gray attire. But nothing terrible yet.
So we eat bratwurst, drinking beers, and arguing politics(I don't know how this started but it ended up being pretty funny). About 11:15 we decided to head to the stadium. So after we shotgunned one last beer at the tailgate, we grabbed more beers and headed to the stadium. By this time I'm feeling great and nothing is gonna get me down. As we are walking fingers were flown at us, obscenities bantered, and for some reason they kept calling me by a name that means another sexual preference than my own. I thought this was funny because I had a pretty good buzz and they knew the game wasn't gonna be pretty.
We get to the stadium and have to wait in this ridiculous line to get into our section. This is absurd, whoever designed the logistics of that stadium needs a good talking to. We finally get to our seat right before kickoff. I take a look around and the sight is beautiful. At least a third of the place is scarlet and gray and we have the best seats that I got from a UM alum off eBay.
About five minutes into the game a UM fan walks right in front of me and stands on the bleacher blocking my view. I don't say anything. The Buckeyes have a big play and I cheer. He turns around and says something along the lines of "Oh, I can tell I'm gonna be fighting one of these guys today." Right then behind us three other Buckeye fans, who turned out to be Ohio State Highway Patrolmen, say that there will be none of that. The kid shuts his mouth quickly, but still keeps trying to bump me while I'm cheering and his friend quickly catches on by bumping me and Kobee as well. I don't do anything about this. I will let the scoreboard do the talking.
After half time the kid completely stopped doing anything. We had an eleven point lead going into quarter number four and everyone knew the Blue wasn't coming back. Our defense was way to good. The only reason they had scored a TD earlier was because of a Pryor interception.
Meanwhile the cops from Cleveland weaseled some beer in the stadium and were giving me swigs to keep my buzz afloat during the game. The highlight of the day came when we got the O-H-I-O cheer going around Michigan stadium in full force. The UM fans tried to drown us out, but no avail on their part. They have you-tube videos of it, it would be worth checking out.
So the final whistle blew and we ran to the corner of the end zone where the team had congregated with the band and numerous alumnus. There is nothing like kicking Michigan's ass and singing We Don't Give a Damn For The Whole state of Michigan in their own stadium to our band playing. An even greater feeling occurred when we sang Carmen Ohio while all the Michigan fans were leaving the stadium. Just watching the Roses fly around while singing the same song with people like Archie Griffin and Jim Tressel just send chills down your spine. The tradition and mystique may be the best part of Buckeye football.
Leaving the stadium was funny. I had one guy grab me while I was talking on my cell phone and yell "Tell whoever you are talking to you are gonna get your ass kicked in the Rose Bowl." I told him to "get away" in a not so nice way and proceeded on. Then just like on the way into the game, on the way out many more jokes about sexual orientation where yelled. I just laughed because the best crack they could come up with was a homophobic insult that just proved how big of pieces of trash they really were.
So we get back to the tailgate on the golf course. I give my UM friends hell for losing, but in a respectful manner. Not really, I had to rub it in. I mean come on, the Bucks haven't lost to Michigan since I was in high school. That's something to hang your hat on. We ended up playing some more drinking games at the golf course then decided to walk back to the hotel. At this point it's like seven and we are all starving and drunk. A bad combination at best.
So we order a couple pizzas and devoured them. I had a couple shots before we decided to power nap. I was watching football and just as I was about to fall asleep my darn phone went off and I never got to participate in the power nap.
We awoke around 10:30 only to discover that Todd wasn't going anywhere that night. He was out of it. Todd is just a little guy so the all day drinking event didn't help his cause. The rest of the night was mostly typical, we had some drinks at Ashley's again drank more imported beer. Then we got kicked out of the bar at close(which is a half hour earlier in Michigan than Ohio). We decided to get a cab back, we called three places and waited half an hour.
During the wait we met a strange looking man. He was weird looking. He had the whole serial killer look to him. Then as we were getting in the cab we told him we were headed to the Lamp Post Inn. He said "Hey, that's where I am headed too!" so Andy invited him in the cab with us. I'm thinking great, time to get murdered, but he was seriously living in the room next to us. Literally living there. He said he couldn't afford to live anywhere else because The University of Michigan screwed him over on numerous occasions. He also loved to talk philosophy and didn't really know anything about football. I can talk football philosophy drunk, but not world struggles and economics, just not fun.
So finally after that buzz kill, a couple more vodka-tonics, and some leftover bread-sticks it was finally time to call it a night. I'm not too sure when psycho serial killer left, but I woke up feeling terrible. I purged twice on the way home and finally arrived back in Columbus in one piece.
I guess what I will take out of the whole experience is simple. Michigan fans aren't as prideful as Ohio State fans. Don't drink the water in Michigan, drink beer. Yell Ohio State banter, because it's funny to see them squirm. Homophobic remarks seem to appease them when they lose. Michigan Sucks and Always will. I also reassured my hatred for the team up north. Go Bucks!