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I spent last Saturday in beautiful Tuscaloosa, Alabama for the Mizzou-Alabama football game. I spent three days with some fraternity brothers at the luxurious Ross Bridge Golf Resort by Renaissance (not at all a huge deal), a stop on the prestigious Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail. We played 36 holes of golf and enjoyed the best $26 breakfast buffet I’ve ever had. After balling outrageously in Hoover, we descended upon Tuscaloosa to stay at a much less opulent, yet far quirkier Airbnb near campus.
We were back in the old college groove. Plenty of beers, camaraderie and jokes. We foolishly believed that this would be the weekend our Mizzou Tigers shocked the world and defeated the mighty Crimson Tide. We could use all the confidence we could get. My friends and I spent much of the afternoon in the shade of the Denny Chimes, which caused some confusion amongst the ranks because for much of the morning, since we thought Denny Chimes was a person, a statue, or some sort of lesser known regional chain of diners, not an historic campus bell tower. Our mistake.
Regardless, we broke bread and chained cigs with the finest the SEC has to offer. Bountiful spreads of southern delicacies like Conecuh Sausage, bourbon cocktails, biscuits and gravy, and Doritos were readily available to us. We broke down regional barriers, and learned all about the alleged evils of the-one-they-call “Sherman” and his sacking of “the West Point of the Confederacy.” I politely nodded along and did not add much commentary outside of a few cautious “hmms” and “Is that rights?” All in all, it was an educational experience. After we felt we were close to overstaying our welcome, we decided to head back down to The Strip to Gallette’s, a two-level college bar known for sugary cocktails, live music and sundressed coeds. Sold.
Once we arrived at Gallette’s, the acoustic duo playing on stage was replaced by a denim vest and bandana-wearing DJ who was absolutely jacked out of his mind. He immediately began playing “For Whom the Bell Tolls” and I knew that I would never want to leave this bar. We were flying high, meeting new people from a strange land, reuniting with old friends for a once in a decade showdown under the lights at Bryant-Denny. Majestic. It might have been the six or seven Michelob Ultras I had casually consumed up until that point, but my confidence was growing in the company of friends.
My friend Tracy then told us that his buddy Micah from Austin was joining us. I had not seen him in several years. I knew Micah back from my days in Austin, as we ran in the same crew, the ATX Robots. It sounds like I was in a gang, but it was really just a bunch of 20-something go-hards who loved to go to EDM concerts on Tuesdays and drink ourselves silly on Red River. I thought the friend group nickname could have used some work, but the kinship I found in that group was of a much higher quality than the nickname itself. I was excited to see an old friend and fellow PGPer.
Micah greeted me with a strong handshake and I was immediately struck by his attire. A monogrammed linen shirt with black and gold vertical trim. Truly stunning. He was glowing in the autumnal Alabama sunshine. I was caught off guard, because I felt that his gameday fit was far superior to my standard black Nike Dri-Fit, jeans and deck sneakers. I reminded myself that I still looked good, despite Micah’s staggering ensemble.
After catching up for a few minutes, I asked for a picture so we could show all our friends on the internet how much fun we were having. As on-brand as he possibly could be, he then requested that we “throw it low,” his signature move. I gladly obliged, since I do not have a signature internet picture pose.
Tuscaloosa is in big trouble pic.twitter.com/zRQJM6AA9n
— Brian (@BrianMcGannon) October 13, 2018
I posted the pic on Twitter and put my phone away, ready to enjoy the rest of my day and the 14 remaining beers that were on the menu. But I am a weak man and I pulled out my phone just 15 minutes later to find that Will deFries had dragged Micah online for a poor haircut, while simultaneously praising my classically coiffed hair. I did not necessarily pay much attention to the passive-aggressive dragging of Micah, because a compliment on my hair (even from another man) puts me on cloud nine, rendering me utterly useless when it comes to sympathy.
Micah continued to get dragged online and later had to defend himself on the Touching Base podcast against the angry internet mob for allegedly looking like a slob.
Long story short, I thought Micah looked great. Any attacks on his appearance on October 13, 2018 are very ugly and undeserved.
Mizzou went on to lose 39-10 after a valiant first quarter effort, but I greatly enjoyed Tuscaloosa and highly recommend it to any alumni of visiting SEC or Southland Conference university. Here are some gameday tips:
Booze: Gallettes, Innisfree Irish Pub, The Copper Top
Drunk Food: Quick Grill. This was legitimately one of the best burgers I’ve ever had. No joke. Get the burger and messy fries combo. Thank me later.
Micah was not the only one parrying online attacks this past week. I was viciously accused of not being in ketosis by David Ruff, a co-host of a successful, boutique podcast who is very accepting of a ketogenic lifestyle, historically. Well, I am here to say that while I did in fact break ketosis while in Tuscaloosa, Alabama on the weekend of October 12, I had a general gameplan of how I was going to attack a three-day onslaught of southern hospitality items like biscuits, yellow hammers and barbeque. Did I execute that gameplan? No. It was Bama, where gameplans get dragged out of their own house and curb stomped in the street in front of their family and closest friends.
M-I-Z and Roll damn Tide..