the sky is carolina blue…

Roy Williams does a jig in three parts.

I just can’t even stand it….

I was fine this morning. The sun was shining, the air was cool, and life was okay. As I left the garage, I felt fine. A little bummed since I didn’t get into Ga. Tech. (more on that later), but I was ready to move on. I was even going to be a little early to work today…

I wasn’t even thinking about it when my friend Kyle called me to let me know he was on his way to Chapel Hill to bar hop — 9 hours before the game. I was a little disturbed because he was going to end up in the same bar I was at the end of the night and who knows what would happen then…

I talk to my boss to tell him that I’ll be working here until at least January now. He cuts in to ask me whether Carolina was going to win tonight. I’m honest, I have no idea. If there are any equals to the Tar Heels its the boys in orange. He tells me we favored by 2… by two points. And we agree that had we lost on Saturday both of us would be okay today. But that’s not the case anymore…

Hours pass and Dawne tells me how they are expecting Halloween type crowds tonight on Franklin Street. Bulletins were sent out warning people not to start bonfires. I think bonfires should be the least of their worries. If we win, Chapel Hill itself may go ablaze…

Read news story after news story. By the numbers, the odds, the strategy. I decide the team that plays the best defense will probably win the game. That does not bode well for us… but not too well for them either. This is going to be intense…

My stomach is churning, I want to run. The game needs to start now. I don’t think I can take much more of this…

I’m sweating. By the time I get to the Hill, Linda’s will be closed for an hour before we go in. They are preparing. Everyone is setting themself up for this. From NC to ILL, we are all getting ready. For most of the year our teams have been 1 and 2. We’re the best two teams in the nation and we’ve proved it by getting to the final game. There will be no shame in losing to the other team… but there are no such things as moral victories. We want it all. And all that stands in our way is the other best team in the nation. The talking ends tonight. 4 hours…

Franklin Street is covered in blue and white. A huge line has formed in front of Top of the Hill. Frat boys with mop tops and powder blue dress shirts. Girls in strapless dresses. I finally find a parking spot, oddly enough, on campus. Just a spot other have missed. I nearly skip over to Linda’s. A smokey bar filled with smart-ass bartenders and Tar Heel bartenders. We have to wait to get in as they get the place ready. A Carolina blue mustang drives by… pedestrians and passengers are in awe of all the lines outside of bars on the Hill. We’re ready. We’re nervous…

They let us in thirty minutes. It’s 6:30pm. Dawne and I get our seats at the bar… I wish I brought cards like that table… now all I have to entertain me is terrible television commentary on the game. Dickie V. is the only “expert” that picks us… Great…

9:20pm. Game time. I feel better. I always feel better when the game starts…. I will not be writing during the game… this needs my full attention…

Halftime. They’ve got one shot. The three-pointer. No answer for Sean May and McCants could have a field day with their best defender if he wants. That said, this is Illinois, they’ll be back….

… we won …

WE FUCKING WON!

The bar erupted. There was never so much love between a bunch of strangers in a bar and on the street. I shook hands of police officers, I gave high fives to anybody who’d give it to me. I need to get back to Clayton to take care of the dog but I have to savor this. Who knows when it’ll happen again? I wander around Franklin Street. Bonfires have already started. Dawne buys me a t-shirt. I have to look at it a few times to make sure it’s true….

We won… we proved it…. no more talking… no more speculation…. we can once again say we are the best.

Until next year.

I’m a Tar Heel born. I’m a Tar Heel bred…

About dan

designer, gamer, drinker
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