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Saturday
Apr112009

Love and Honor to Miami

With my brother school looking decidedly... controversial these days, I wish to extend my honest congratulations to Miami University, my college-in-law, for sending its men's hockey team to the NCAA National Championship.

Julie The NephewsMama went to Miami, as did Country The Brother-In-Law and a whole raft of cousins.  No, it's not in Florida.  It is just north of Cincinnati, that most worthy of hometowns.  ESPN always gives Miami one of these:  (OH), so as not to confuse it with, you know, the actual Miami, where everybody goes to wear neon jams and get shot at.  This Miami is set amongst many cornfields and is a perfectly lovely red-bricked place-- fun, biggish, and academically sound.

Well.  Until it offered me a teaching position few years ago, which I couldn't take because The University Of Airplanes also offered an employment package which did not include the necessity of moving eight hundred miles. I would have totally accepted Miami's classes, if only because it presented the opportunity to rapidly and in person inform Country that his beloved alma mater had deemed worthy, as a  professional disburser of academic instruction, his sister-in-law, a woman he no doubt is amazed to see inhale and exhale without detailed directions at every step of the process.

A business school powerhouse, Miami was perfect for Julie The NephewsMama and would have been an over-structured nightmare for me.  It is not necessarily the type of place you go to sit about in berets and lounge on beanbag chairs in Victorian Lit symposiums numbering as many as five students in a single class.  You go to Miami for the khaki and the Greek houses and the football cheers, and that was just fine with our parents, who rather favored the state school way of doing things when the letters from the bursar's office came.

Miami introduced me to College, to shower shoes and campus newspapers and the singular, pervasive smell of a dormitory; indeed, one of my few discernible preteen memories out of the great haze of peer rejection and mental panic is of my cousins and me discovering the campus shuttlebus as a wondrous innovation during a Little Sibs weekend.  It's located in Oxford, a quintessential Midwestern college town with bricked streets and an "uptown" within walking distance, a charming row of bars, Burger King, and this one incense shop that smells kinda funny.

True to the fold, Julie and Country's wedding-- they call an inter-alum marriage a "Miami Merger"-- was an ivy and red brick tribute to their alma mater.  The fight song was played as the wedding party was introduced, which resulted in a great deal of footage of the maid of honor clapping along, pretending to mouth the words, and failing utterly.

Of course, their two sons have been trundled several times up and down the state route tying Cincinnati to Oxford; Jim The Small Child Nephew found his last visit largely boring, and Will The Smaller Child Nephew honestly doesn't care where he is as long as food and the possibility of watching Cars is on the horizon.

At five and two, however, they're now at an age at which they understand that when adults shriek a great deal at sporting events on the television set, bath times get moved, yelling is encouraged, and tussles over tank engines are settled less quickly.  Miami's advancement into the Frozen Four, then, resulted in a great deal of running in circles and screaming indiscriminately, with Will adding an occasional, and until the final sixty seconds of tonight's game, thoroughly incomprehensible "Miami crash!"

It came down to overtime, which would have meant more had I any idea how NCAA national championship games are decided in overtime (sudden death?  penalty shots?  goalie who has squirted the most amount of water into his mask over a twenty-minute period? team with the greatest number of teeth per capita?) So I  defaulted to my regulation playing time behavior, which was crunching up and shrieking every time the Miami goaltender moved one millimeter out of the net, and snickering at the vastly Canadian announcer (eh?) who said such things as "Look at that stick handling!  He's got some soft hands, right there."  (Also:  "He's really jammed it home!")

Oh well.  Miami's bricks are better than their bricks.

first goal wins at:  mbe@drinktothelasses.com

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Reader Comments (3)

[...] Beth congratulates her College-In-Law Share and [...]

In the semifinals, the RedHawks eliminated a team I can't spell, pronounce, or locate on a map (but I'd guess it's in Minnesota). That school knocked ND out in the first round. So good on them.

April 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterINCITEmarsh

I am curious as to the identity of these "Red Hawks" of which you speak. When Julie and Country were at Miami, they were the Redskins, and then there was some sort of PC kerfluffle, and even though their 10-year reunion is well in the rearview mirror, I've not seen any merchandise in their home or on their children which features, as Julie so succinctly put it, "that damn bird."

April 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMB
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