Sunday, March 13, 2011

rock chalk jayhawk

when people ask me why i'm a yankees fan i try to explain that it's because my dad has always been a yankees fan so it's just what i grew up with. i'm still accused of being a band-wagoner but whatever, people can think what they want. people also ask me why i'm a fan of kansas basketball and that one might be a little easier to explain. my whole family is from kansas. my parents moved to austin in the late 70s but they are kansas folk through and through. my aunt went to ku for about a million years (she has a phd) and now she also works for the university. so it may seem that i just like winning teams but i promise, that's not true!

i remember once in the late 90s, maybe 1997, our local newspaper printed a story about kansas basketball titled "the road to the final four." the story featured a picture of several of the team members piled into a blue classic car (i don't remember what kind of car it was). you better believe i cut that out of the newspaper and taped it to my bedroom door where it stayed for years. at the time i had the biggest crush on scot pollard. i honestly don't remember very well but i don't think he was quite as big of a weirdo when he was in college. or maybe he was and i just like weirdos. who knows? 

for the last decade or so i've filled out an ncaa tournament bracket picking kansas to win every year. i didn't just pick them because they're my favorite team, i also legitimately think that they're one of the best teams around, every year.  kansas broke my heart 2 years in a row, losing in the first round to bucknell in 2005 and then bradley the very next year. i remember being on the verge of tears because wayne simien was a senior when they lost to bucknell and he had worked so hard all season, it was just devastating to see it all end so quickly. finally in 2008 i predicted the national champions! i was a nervous wreck during the game against north carolina and boy, did i hate tyler hansbrough with a passion. once kansas took that game i knew that the championship was theirs. of course i was still a bit nervous during the game against memphis but i was confident in my jayhawks!

nels knows what a jayhawk looks like and when i wear one of my kansas shirts he says, "tessie, you have a jayhawk?" he says the same thing to my dad when he wears one too. a few weeks ago i decided that nels needed his own jayhawk shirt. he was so excited when he opened the box and pulled it out. he kept saying, "i have a jayhawk! i have a jayhawk!" this afternoon he ran around saying, "rock chalk tessie! rock chalk papi! rock chalk karsten!" and so on until he had rock chalked all of us. it was adorable. and you know what else is adorable?

nels and his papi are ready for the ncaa tournament!

he seems pretty excited, don't you think? 

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