Lewis Grizzard Wednesday

In order to get us over the hump day, we are going to treat you all with a new Lewis Grizzard article each Wednesday.    This first post really sums up what a game day is like in Athens (wrong South Carolina team).  Though we may be down as a Bulldawg Nation, reading these poetic words should gear us up for a Fall Saturday Between the Hedges!

From The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, September 24, 1984

 

Great moments in a would be father’s life

 

To my Son, if I ever have one:

Kid, I am writing this on September 3, 1984. I have just returned from Athens, where I spent Saturday watching the University of Georgia, your old dad’s alma matter, play football against Clemson.

While the events of the day were still fresh on my mind, I wanted to recount them so if you are ever born, you can read this and perhaps be able to share one of the great moments in your father’s life.

Saturday was a wonderful day on the Georgia campus.

We are talking blue, cloudless sky, a gentle breeze and a temperature suggesting summer’s end and autumn’s approach.

I said the blessing before we had lunch. I thanked the Lord for three things: fried chicken, potato salad and for the fact he had allowed me the privilege of being a Bulldog.

“And , Dear Lord,” I prayed, “bless all those not as fortunate as I.”

Imagine my son, 82,000 people, most whom were garbed in red, gathered together gazing down on a lush valley of hedge and grass where soon historic sporting combat would be launched.

Clemson was ranked number 2 in the nation, and Georgia, feared too young to compete with the veterans from beyond the river, could only dream, the smart money said, of emerging three hours hence victorious.

They had us 20-6 at the half, son. A man sitting in front of me said, “I just hope we don’t get embarrassed.”

My boy, I had never seen such a thing as came to pass in the second half. Todd Williams threw one long and high, and Herman Archie caught it in the end zone, and it was now 20-13.

Georgia got the ball again and scored again, and it was now 20-20, and my mouth was dry, and my hands were shaking, and this Clemson fan who had been running his mouth the whole ballgame suddenly shut his fat face.

Son, we got ahead 23-20, and the ground trembled and shook, and many were taken by fainting spells.

Clemson’s kicker, Donald Igwebuike, tied it 23-23 and this sacred place became the center of the universe.

Only seconds were left when Georgia’s kicker, Kevin Butler, stood poised in concentration. The ball rushed toward him, and it was placed upon the tee a heartbeat before his right foot launched it heavenward.

A lifetime later, the officials threw their arms aloft. From 60 yards away, Kevin Butler had been true, and Georgia led and would win 26-23.

I hugged perfect strangers and kissed a fat lady on the mouth. Grown men wept. Lightening flashed. Thunder rolled. Stars fell, and joy swept through, fetched by a hurricane of unleashed emotions.

When Georgia beat Alabama 18-17 in 1965, it was a staggering victory. When we came back against Georgia Tech and won 29-28 in1978, the Chapel bell rang all night. When we beat Florida 26-21 in the last seconds in 1980, we called it a miracle. And when we beat Notre Dame 17-10 in the Sugar Bowl that same year for the national championship, a woman pulled up her skirt and showed the world the Bulldog she had sewn on her underbritches.

But Saturday may have been even better than any of those.

Saturday in Athens was a religious experience.

I give this to you, son. Read it and re-read it, and keep it next to your heart. And when people want to know how you wound up with the name “Kevin” let them read it, and then they will know.

–Lewis Grizzard


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6 Responses to “Lewis Grizzard Wednesday”


  1. 1 Greg Brown September 9, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    I never met Lewis except through his books and a couple of tapes but I’ve always felt like I knew him. God rest his soul. Thanks for showing that article. Good to see it again.

  2. 2 Computers & Tech September 17, 2009 at 10:31 pm

    Hey there,
    Good post, I just found it and I’m already a fan.

  3. 3 Jake Hegarty September 24, 2009 at 9:06 am

    There is a God in Heaven, and a true Bulldog fan is there with Him!

  4. 4 shankit November 1, 2010 at 1:52 pm

    “My wife ran off with my best friend,
    and I miss him…. One of Lewis’ greatest….

  5. 5 shankit November 1, 2010 at 1:59 pm

    But the greatest was in 1980
    Bulldog fans leave Athens on Thursday for Jax.
    Dawgs are No. 2 in nation and Notre Dame is No. 1
    Dawg fans stop in Folkston and load up on turnip
    greens, knowing after this the Jack would not
    stop flowing.
    Get to the stadium early Sat. morning, Dawgs
    go up on Florida. Florida comes back, and with
    less than two minutes left in game, Dawg fans
    tired of the Gators ragging them, leave the
    stadium.
    On the way to the car, they hear a loud roar,
    and look back and see red and black poms poms
    going everwhere.
    Rush to their car to find out what happened,
    and first station is Tech’s announcer screaming
    cause TEch has tied Notre Dame.
    Then they find Munson, and find out they have
    Belue has connected with Lindsey Scott and the
    Dawg fans missed the whole game….
    I am told Buck’s parents were among this group…

  6. 6 Brian Spaulding January 23, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    This was my first Dawg game as a Freshman…not too bad huh?


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