College Football Season, With Lewis Grizzard

In terms of sports – there are two seasons – College Football season, and NOT College Football season. It’s about that time…

College football is a religion here in SEC country. Gameday is like a second Sunday each week, where small Southern towns become major metropolitan areas for a few Saturdays each Fall. Losing – especially at home – is a harrowing experience. Winning – well, I’ll let Lewis Grizzard – the famed AJC columnist – tell that story:

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 mater, 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 of 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. Lightning 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 he 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.

Onward Reserve X CURE

September is National Childhood Cancer awareness month.  The folks over at Onward Reserve have teamed up with CURE in the fight against childhood cancer.  They created this GREAT looking limited edition red and gray button down with all profits benefit CURE childhood cancer.

Order yours today:

Some action shots:

 

Friday Jam: Dirty Guv’nahs “Walk With Me” (Live)

Big weekend planned over in Birmingham…looking forward to catching up with these guys tonight:

See you there?

1000 Words: Southern Proper Fall 2015

Fall is coming, and I think we can all agree that it is more than welcome.  It has been hot this summer.  The ladies at Southern Proper know how to welcome a season…feast your eyes on their Fall 2015 collection.  Great, functional pieces that are big in style and long in good looks.  And the icing on top: A great ladies collection.  Take a look:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And last but not least: probably the best looking jacket of the season:

College Needlepoint Giveaway with Smathers & Branson

College Football is close, folks- only TWO more Saturdays until toe meets leather.  To celebrate, the good folks at Smathers & Branson have teamed up with us here at Red Clay Soul for a collegiate needlepoint belt.  That’s right – one lucky winner will get an in-stock collegiate belt of their choice.  What’s even better is that they have updated quite a few colleges, so check ‘em out…

Tell us which one you would choose… Me? Even though I have no connection to Tulane, but that Green Wave belt is mighty fine…

Here are the details: Leave a comment to this post with an email address and your choice of belt to enter.

For additional entries:

+1 (2 Total) ‘Like’ Smathers & Branson on Facebook
+1 (3 Total) ‘Like’ Red Clay Soul on Facebook, and share the giveaway to your friends
+1 (4 Total) ‘Follow’ Smathers & Branson on Twitter
+1 (5 Total) ’Follow’ Red Clay Soul on Twitter
+1 (6 Total) ‘Follow’ Smathers & Branson on Instagram
+1 (7 Total) ‘Follow’ Red Clay Soul on Instagram
+1 (6 Total) Tweet the following about the giveaway ‘It’s college football season! I entered to win a needlepoint belt from @SandBBelts & @redclaysoul Enter here: http://www.redclaysoul.com/?p=8198’

Entries must be in by midnight on Monday, August 31st. I’ll announce the winner on Tuesday, September 1st around lunchtime.

Special thanks to Smathers & Branson for providing the goods for the giveaway…

Back To School With East Dane

“Back to school” can be taken literally and figuratively.  For those undergrads, you are starting one of the greatest four (or five) years of your life.  For us post-graduate folks, it’s much more of a feeling.  We’re lining right up with Fall, triggering a wardrobe transition.  The sweltering heat is on it’s way out, and the cooler, less humid, football-filled season is within focus.

This Fall, we’re going to continue with value buys – in case you don’t remember: buy quality that will last, and take care of your stuff.  Everything below is of good quality, and will treat you as well you treat it.  Second, let’s keep it cool during this back to school season.  No need for neons (is there ever a need for neon?).  Primary colors and plaids work in a wide range of outfits.

We’ve teamed up with East Dane to put together a great back to school look…upperclassman style:

From Top Left:

1. Filson Original Briefcase:  A bit of a rugged, minimalist look.  This bag is as much of an investment piece as it is a functional bag.  It’ll hold more than you think.  Approved for Macbook Air users.  Oh – and Otter Green will break in very nicely.
2. Gitman Vintage Chambray Oxford Shirt:  Skip the non-iron stuff.  For the most part, they all look a little plastic-y.  Opt for a basic blue oxford with a great fit.  You’ll need to fire up the iron for this one, but it’s worth it.  No drying required.
3. Ray Ban Original Wayfarer:  If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.  That’s some advice you don’t need a college to tell you.
4. Carhartt WIP Baker Shirt:  The Holy Trinity of a fall shirt: good plaid, great fit, school colors. Please, tuck this in. Same goes for the oxford above.
5. Cole Haan Plain Toe Tumbled Leather Oxfords:  The tell-tale sign of an upperclassman: dress shoes that aren’t some sort of driver/kiltie/tasseled rubber sole things.  These are a great mature look that will work with jeans, khakis, and natural dress pants.  Polishing, brushing, and shoe trees required.
6. Daniel Wellington St. Mawes Watch:  A nice looking watch at a great price point.  This will get you through your senior year, an internship, and your first couple years on the job.
7. Rag & Bone Rugged Brass Belt:  A versatile belt that brings the outfit together.  Matches shoes in leather and suede.
8. Fred Perry Slim Fit Twin Tipped Polo Shirt:  You know, for casual Fridays.
9. Apolis Standard Issue Chinos:  Pay attention to khakis this time of year.  They should be worn like jeans but treated like dress pants.
10. J.W. Hulme Co. Continental Duffle:  Traveling to away games shouldn’t look like an episode of “Road Rules.”
11. Levi’s Made & Crafted Tack Slim Fit Jeans:  Time to add another dark pair of jeans to the lineup.  The ones you bought last year are plenty broken in, but you need a good, dark pair for Friday night.
12. Loake Kempton Chukka Boots:  A much dressier option than the typical work boots or cowboy boots.  You are an upperclassman…time to tighten it up.

Live Tonight: Alabama Shakes @ Verizon Amphitheater

Pumped. See you there.