Monday, August 22, 2011

Stuffing the Passer - Campus Tour

The great French writer Marcel Proust opined that the real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. Modern scholarship has revealed that Proust, by then deeply consumed by syphilitic madness, actually intended that literally, insisting that the path to obtaining true knowledge of the majesty and beauty of the natural world required gouging out the eyeballs of prostitutes, vagrants, and other social unmentionables and affixing them to various areas on one's face and torso. Mercifully, respiratory disease brought his reign of terror as the "Left Bank Dismemberer" to an abrupt halt in 1922, clearing the way for subsequent generations of literary theorists to discover the deep ringing of symbolic truth in the jumbled word salad of this crazed homicidal lunatic.

Verily, as we stand on the precipice of another college football season full of promise, wonder, and sheer unspoiled potential, we are reminded that we have not discovered a new and uncharted world, but are rather returning to a place that is the very opposite of the wild, unfamiliar terra nullius that is the provenance of great explorers. We are indeed returning to a place that is unflinchingly commonplace and well-trod -- whose arcane rituals, bizarre curiosities, and even its unsavory scandals are deeply familiar and recognizable. By being mindful of this paradox that each new season is unique yet wholly un-novel, we can truly understand what Proust might well have been trying to say if he had a shred of sanity left in his tortured scrap of a mind. We are not entering a "new football season". Rather, we are returning to the same football season that has been fixed and changeless for time immemorial, and it is our eyes that are new. We bear with us new hopes, new expectations, new fears, and new experimental and borderline-felonious alcoholic concoctions to dull or sharpen the pain or pleasure we expect to have dished out upon us. Enjoy the voyage, my friends, but be aware that only by looking inwards will you truly know where you have arrived.

Your loyal puppets will be joining you on this journey this year, and now is as good a time as any to get reacquainted. Submitted for your approval is what your beloved googly-eyed pals have been up to in the offseason.

Who here likes Proust? You'd better learn. That's how we do it in the S.B.