I Can’t Hardly Wait…to go back to Ohio State.
To old Columbus town.
“And when we win the game, we’ll buy a keg of boooooze…And drink to old Ohio til we wobble in our shoes!”
Last time I saw Jerod Morris the White Sox looked like a legitimate surprise playoff baseball team.
I drove to Dallas in the sweltering heat during a drought to catch a weekend series against the Rangers.
Geez that seems so long ago, how things have changed.
One of those changes has been nice in the Middle-West, and it is the change in autumnal leaves, weather, clothes, and facial hair on me (mustache to full beard).
This weekend, my lady friend Jennifer and I will drive from Indianapolis to Columbus Friday afternoon to pick Jerod up from the airport after he leaves Texas en route to see the ever changing fall Midwest landscapes in Old Columbus town.
And there is a Big Ten football Saturday to enjoy of course, all courtesy of La Quinta, as this will be the last leg of his fabulous 4-week La Quinta-sponsored college football roadtrip.
I’ve been looking forward to this trip all season to be with the greatest of friends, embark on new adventures, and watch my beloved Buckeyes in person for the second time in 2012.
This time against the Purdue Boilermakers.
5 Things I ‘Can’t Hardly Wait’ To Experience This Weekend
So, in honor of Jerod’s high-school-and-early-college obsession, here are 5 things I “Can’t Hardly Wait” to experience with my two partners crime this weekend. (Jennifer Love Hewitt, Brutus the Buckeye, and Purdue Pete may or may not be involved…):
1. Generous accommodations Friday and Saturday night at La Quinta Hotel
I’ve had great experiences staying in La Quinta’s hotels on random road trips through my 31-years-young lifetime.
This should be even better, as I expect the same convenience and comfort but using it as a catalyst for a wonderful college football weekend with Jen and Jerod in Columbus, which has been one of my favorite cities in America since I grew up there at a young age while my father got his PhD from The Ohio State University.
Yes, Ohio State football got me when I was an impressionable youth, so there was no other option but to bleed scarlet and gray for the rest of my life.
2. The walk to Ohio Stadium
Once we find parking early Saturday morning, our walk to the stadium area will be filled alumni, students, yells of O-H-I-O, memorabilia/clothing stands, and the best part: piping hot grilled meats off road side vendors.
Once we arrive near the famed Varsity Club bar, we should see a lot of debauchery and won’t mind taking a little of it in before the noon kickoff. The Varsity Club is the go-to spot only a couple blocks from the stadium.
If you don’t have a sweet tailgate spot planned, this is a fine alternative, as well as a couple other public parking lot parties with live music and hard drinks off of Lane Avenue.
Alumni young and old come here pregame to partake in friendly smack talk with the opposing team’s fans. Chances are we can time it so that we will leave and follow the Ohio State Marching band out of St. John’s Arena, across Woody Hayes Drive, and into our seats right before Script Ohio.
3. Script Ohio
I have seen Script Ohio before an Ohio State game more times than I can remember, but it will be a must-see for said partners in crime to get a glimpse of one of the greatest college football traditions.
Despite all of my times witnessing the TBDBITL, I still get chills as the stadium erupts in joy while the senior sousaphone player high steps his way to dot the i at the end of the march.
MSF’s Josh Tinley just wrote a great article on Script Ohio and it’s history on the 80th anniversary of the formation here. (You’ll learn that the first one was done by Michigan’s marching band…*cringe*)
4. The game and revenge against the Boilermakers
Jerod and I both went to high school in the late 90s in West Lafayette, Indiana because our dad’s attained jobs at Purdue University around the same time.
My dad still works there, so I’ve made it a point to go with him to Ohio State games in Ross-Ade stadium. But there’s something oddly cursed about that place as Purdue has upset Ohio State in 4 of 6 meetings since 2000. I did see the Holy Buckeye game en route to Ohio State’s 2002 National Championship, so that was a lasting positive feeling at least.
2011 was the most recent embarrassment though, and maybe crushing Purdue this weekend will take some of that sting away.
This is actually my first time seeing Purdue play in Ohio Stadium in person. We’ll be sure to sing the traditional “Hang On Sloopy” together before the 4th quarter.
The post-game plan might be to see the beautiful buckeye trees planted at Buckeye Grove in honor of All-American football players at The Ohio State University. All of this hopefully to be experienced with the stadium’s Victory Bell ringing after singing the Alma mater “Carmen Ohio” and a Buckeye victory.
5. Columbus’ local food and breweries
A lot of the weekend’s experiences will be determined on the fly and reported in the post weekend blog recap. Video and pictures will not be lacking between the three of us.
We have Friday and Saturday night after the game to put a dent in some of the city’s best, and perhaps lesser known, locales. We will avoid the chain establishments and intuitively find unique, local food and drink based on word of mouth and our own keen traveling judgement.
Faithfully, With Open Arms, Any Way We Want It without going our Separate Ways, I Won’t Stop Believing that Jen, Jerod and I will find all things fun and have a great time together on our Journey.
Okay, if that sentence wasn’t obnoxious enough, enjoy below: