This week, we’ve been in full-on “school spirit mode,” as we prepare for this weekend’s Homecoming activities.
I’ve never been a huge sports fan, but I have always been a booster of wherever I am–I have colors from a number of places:
–Red, white, and blue (Central-Hower and then Niles)
–Purple and White (Mount Union and now Garrett)
–Blue and Gold (Akron U and METHESCO)
–Black and Orange (ONU)
–Purple and Gold (Ada)
I think that’s it. There may be others. I’m a sucker for school spirit-themed items, and I absolutely love school sweatshirts. In fact, when I was in high school and college, I even went through a phase when I wore college sweatshirts from schools I didn’t even have a connection to (Harvard, LSU, OSU, Akron U, Baldwin-Wallace…)
A few weeks ago, when ONU played Mount Union (which is my alma mater–there, I’ve admitted it!), Kelly and I wore shirts that cheered on both teams. Kelly’s shirt said, “I (heart) N & M,” and mine said, “Go United Methodist-Related Universities!” It was fun, and a great way to cheer on both of our beloved schools.
There’s something about cheering on the home team that unites us all, brings energy to a crowd, and helps build community in places where community might otherwise be very difficult to build. When you’re cheering on the Buckeyes, or the Polar Bears, or the Zips, it doesn’t matter if the person next to you is a Democrat or a Republican, or if they belong to your religion, or if they are the same color as you, or anything else…as long as they’re not cheering for the “other guys,” they’re o.k. School spirit is fun, too, and there’s never been anything wrong with that.
So, as we gear up for the big ONU Homecoming celebrations, I’m taking some time to appreciate all the places, people, and great schools that have made me who I am today. And, I’m grateful to be working in an environment where wearing my school hoodie is frequently encouraged.