Friday night meant football. The whole town would gather for The Big Game, in tee-shirts and shorts in August to Carhartts and toboggans in October.
Everyone was there. The moms, bragging about their kids, whose pictures they wore as buttons on their blouses. The dads, hats on and cigarettes lit, talking about the crops, the Buckeyes, and their own gridiron glory days. The teenagers, who didn’t watch the game, except for those select few girls wearing one of the football players’ jerseys. The other teens used Friday Night Football for what it was; a social rite of passage, filled with hormones, first kisses, and broken hearts.
Rumors started on Friday nights would sometimes last all the way until Monday, especially if they were particularly juicy. It wasn’t about the action on the field; it was our little microcosm of life, always changing as it stayed exactly the same.
Looking back, it’s such a stereotype, but Ohioans live for football, and crisp autumn nights transport me back to that place.