Roll Tide Roll | I’ll Have a Blue Christmas | Battle of the Meat Eater and the Vegan


Roll Tide Roll

Dear Micah,

I have a kinda unique problem.  My husband has gone Alabama football crazy.  We just moved to Birmingham this summer from Washington (the state not the capital).  He’s from Alabama and we moved to be closer to his family.  I never knew my husband to be so wild over football.  He never went this crazy over watching the Cougars.  Now we have Crimson Tide stickers all over our cars and he decks out in Tide shirts, pants, hats, jackets, the whole enchilada.  Have I lost my husband to a cult?  On Saturdays among his family and friends, I feel like the only one the pods haven’t overtaken.  Is this just my life now or does it eventually settle down to a livable level?

Nonbeliever

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Dear  Nonbeliever,

It will never get better and it will never stop.  Grasp that concept and love your husband through it.  It’s just for football season, if you’re lucky.  There is a slight possibility that you may also encounter similar fervor during Alabama baseball and basketball seasons.  Although that typically doesn’t excite as many people as the football does.  It’s been my experience, being born and raised in Tuscaloosa, that the most avid baseball and basketball fans usually live in Tuscaloosa.

Your husband’s newfound devotion to Team Alabama probably is not new.  If he is from here, then he was this way before he moved to Washington.  You just didn’t know him back then.  Now he’s home and around fellow Bama fans, and that is bound to increase and exaggerate his devotion.  You are not going to stop this.  I suppose that where you come from, sports are an enjoyable past time, not a religion.  But you are in Bama country now, and the rules are much different.

I myself do not partake in the football frenzy.  As I said, I come from the backyard of the Crimson Tide, and my mother worked for the University, so I’ve had my fill, thank you.  However I can understand the kind of exhilaration the Tide might incite.  You mentioned watching the Cougar; maybe you felt something similar when you watched them.  I am assuming the Cougars are a  sports team and not a group of middle-aged oversexed women, although watching that could be fun, too.  I myself might feel the same kind of excitement if the cast of One Life to Live came to town.

For your husband, the Crimson Tide is the thing in life that makes him giddy.  It is a nostalgic piece of the past for him while simultaneously remaining current and new.  My advice to you is to join the pod people.  You will not stop the game from playing on your TV and you will not succeed in cleansing the Tide off of him.  I am from here. I know.  I’ve seen wives try.  They always fail.  Down here, the most successful marriages are the ones where the couple share the football craze.  It’s a religion here.  So like it or not, Nonbeliever, you need to indoctrinate yourself.

My suggestion is that you actually attend some of the home football games in Tuscaloosa.  I detest football and find the whole thing ridiculously overblown, yet even I get caught up in it and find myself cheering and joining in on the few times I have attended a game in person.  There is just something about being there:  The tailgaters, the different memorabilia stands, the energy of the crowd in the stands.  You’ll find yourself jumping up and doing “the wave” the moment it starts moving around the stadium.  Although, I could never seem to get in sync with the wave and catch it at the right time; I always seemed to stand up and toss my arms in the air seconds after the wave had passed, looking like a complete fool.

Anyway, as I said, your only options are to divorce and go home or join him.  And at the end of the day, silly as it all may seem to you and me, isn’t it really a good thing?  In this world of greed and hate and people always drawing distinctions between themselves and others, there is something like football that has the power to draw many of the people together as one big family of fans.  They are all equal and they are all brothers, sisters, and neighbors when they are donning a crimson shirt with a slanted A.  (Or an orange and blue shirt with a bird on it for Auburn fans).  And as for those stickers covering your car, you stand a much better chance of having a stranger stop to help you change a flat tire if you have Alabama decals on your back windshield, because one fan would never leave another fan in distress!

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I’ll Have a Blue Christmas

Dear Micha,

I share custody of my kids with my ex-husband.  We have an unusual situation in that we get along really well.   I have a request I need to make of him and I don’t know how to bring it up.  I don’t want to risk ruining our good standing with each other.  Last Christmas morning our kids were with me.  This Christmas they are supposed to be with him.  This has been a tough year for me.  I had a parent die and a relationship that broke up.  Christmas looks pretty depressing for me.  I really want my kids with me Christmas morning.  Do you think I should ask him to let me have them again this year?  And if so how do I bring it up?

Jenna

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Dear Jenna,

Maybe he’ll see this post, know it’s you, and offer.  If not, then let’s hash it all out together.  First of all, sorry about your loss on both fronts.  That’s hard to handle with the holidays looming.  I completely understand your desire to have your children with you.  The problem is that your ex had to sacrifice his Christmas morning with his children last year as per your agreement, and he complied without issue.  It’s really not fair to deprive him again this year.  And what happens next year when it’s your turn again?  Will you let him have them or make the assumption that he “passed” his turn to you and it’s your turn again?  Should you let him have the kids for the next two years to make up for his loss during the last two?  Or will you just have the kids three years running and then it’s almost as if the kids’ Christmas tradition is with mom and it’ll be strange whenever they finally go to Dad’s for Christmas?

I think it is a mistake to change the plan.  I really believe that the kids need to go to Dad’s this Christmas.  You didn’t elaborate, but I am assuming that the plan is for Dad to get the kids on Christmas Eve, so perhaps you could do your Christmas with them on Christmas Eve morning, or even Christmas Eve afternoon.  Also, I wonder if Dad has remarried?  Has a girlfriend?  Is there any reason why you couldn’t ask him if you could pop over sometime on Christmas Day to see the kids?  If you have a good relationship, he probably wouldn’t mind as long as it doesn’t make a girlfriend or spouse uncomfortable.  It never hurts to ask.  Or perhaps you don’t even have to ask.  Maybe just mention when you’re talking to him how depressing this Christmas is going to be for you.  Who knows, he may invite you on his own.

The only thing I can say for certain is, though I sympathize with your feelings this year, I do not think it’s right or fair to put your children’s father in the awkward position of having to deny you something in your heartbroken condition or have to sacrifice his own holiday cheer for you.  Just try to nudge him into letting you drop by for an hour or so.

(P.S. You spelled my name wrong.  Normally I’d have changed it but lots of people misspell it this way, so I decided to use you as an example.  It’s written right here on the page, people!).

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Battle of the Meat Eater and the Vegan

Dear Micah,

My wife has turned vegetarian and has begun to put pressure on me and my son to go veggie too.  We are meat men.  I can’t go the rest of my life without my steaks and ribs and burgers.  She just keeps bitching.  What can I do?

Carnivore

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Dear Carnivore,

Kill her.  Then eat her.

Seriously though, this is a difficult problem.  I don’t know what I’d do.  I WILL NOT give up meat.  I’d divorce first.  I’m not kidding.  If I crashed in the Andes with a plane full of people, I’d be the first one to pull out a bottle of Dales and suggest we eat some folks.  I cannot go without my meat.  I love my bacon and chicken and steak and pork belly and ribs and all of it!  I also hate vegetables.  In fact I don’t think I even eat any.  I have been told that peas, beans and potatoes aren’t vegetables, so if that’s the case, I don’t eat any vegetables at all.

Your wife is from one of two camps:  she just wants you to live a healthy lifestyle, or she’s become a radical anti-meat person and will not stop until you give in to her.  I don’t know which category she falls into.  The first can be reasoned with, the second cannot.  There are vast nutritional advantages to eating vegetables, just like there are also health advantages to eating meat.  So, I really don’t think it’s healthy for your children to be total vegan or too meat-oriented.  I think during their formative years, they need a mix of both.  But I’m not a doctor, so check with one if you need to.

Explain to your wife that you feel just as fervently about your diet choices as she does her own.  Let her know that it is possible for the three of you to live in a household together and each have different eating habits.  Granted, you should not expect her to cook your meat for you if she feels revolted by it, but you can make it yourself.  Surely she will acquiesce a little and compromise.  Maybe she’ll leave you to your meat and allow your son to decide for himself when he’s at an appropriate age.  If there is a debate going on between you and your wife over your son’s diet, let your pediatrician make the decision of what is best for your child to eat.  He will probably encourage vegetables and understand the need for a small meat portion.  If your wife is indignant and refuses to compromise, then turn vegetarian or leave her.  Or eat her like I first said.

If you have a question you’d like to ask Micah, please email it to MicahCargo@hotmail.com.  your question may be selected for a future article!

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