Thursday, August 4, 2011

Book Review -- Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer

Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer: A Road Trip into the Heart of Fan Mania

My enjoyment rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Source:  Library copy

Sensitive reader:  Language, including the F bomb.



Oklahoma was ranked #1 in the preseason USA Today/Coaches Poll, today.

Why does that matter?

Well, when you are a football fanatic, you wait 9 months for this date, and anticipate the 12 autumn weekends that comprise the college football season – and with some luck – week nights in January to watch them in BCS bowls.

I, like Warren St. John, the author of Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer, spend too many countless hours watching football on any given Saturday from September thru December. He for his beloved Crimson Tide of Alabama, I for my alma mater, The Oklahoma Sooners. We weep tears of joy and pain over wins and losses. We both, surprisingly, bleed Crimson. His famed coach wore a hounds tooth patterned fedora, my famed coach (Barry Switzer) was ousted in ’88 when three team members were arrested on weapons charges and rape.

Fortunately, I was able to prepare myself for the impending magic of football season by reading his chronicle of following the Tide in his RV “The Hawg” during the 1999 SEC Championship football season: he meets fans, interviews radio announcers, lunches with boosters, visits the famed Bear Bryant Museum – all in his quest to understand our collective rolls as FANS. His narrative is electrifying when describing the utter ecstasy one feels with a win and the despondency one feels with a loss. You can smell the stale beer in the stands, and feel the heat from the late afternoon stadium sun. You can even hear the band playing the fight song.

The only detraction was that it was dated. Alabama has ridden the roller coaster of football success in recent years, but with the crowning (because in football, that’s what it amounts too) of Nick Saban, they won the BCS National Championship a year ago – it would have been a much more exhilarating to read about that season, than long forgotten season of Mike Dubose (who?) of 12 years ago.

Regardless, it was a great read in anticipation of kickoff in 4 weeks!

Boomer Sooners!