Back story #1
If you go through the archives here, you’ll see that there are many references to Maryland. The University of Maryland is MY alma mater, yet I think Dude may be even fonder of the institution than I am.
Think I’m exaggerating?
My senior year of college, my parents decided to go all out and buy season tickets for football. The main reason was so they could see the band, which I was a member of. (Yep, I’m cool.) Unfortunately for them, the football team went 2 and 10 that season and it rained for EVERY SINGLE HOME GAME except for maybe one or two (but at least we never got snowed on.. My heart goes out to you, MSOM 2011).
Because I’m a diehard fan (read: because members of the band are required to stay for the entire game), I stuck it out for each and every one of those painful home games.
My parents could have left whenever they wanted.
Only Dude didn’t let them.
Despite the rain and general miserable atmosphere in the football stadium, Dude NEVER let my parents leave a game early.
If you know anything about autism, you know that kids who have the diagnosis typically have some kind of sensory sensitivity. Oftentimes, kids with autism are ultra ultra ultra sensitive to noise. Therefore, attending a major sporting event is COMPLETELY out of the question.
The noise at Maryland games can get to be a bit much for Dude at times, but ultimately his love for the band, the dancers, the cheerleaders, and the football team wins out.
Which brings me to present day.
Back story #2
Since I graduated, my family only gets down to maybe one or two football games per season.
We’re pretty far into the college football season, yet Dude and my parents haven’t gone to a game yet this year.
Dude is not pleased.
A little over a month ago, my parents finally decided to order tickets to the game against UVA on November 5th.
Dude is elated and seriously impatient. Every time I have seen him over the last month, he sounds like a broken record.
It’s the same routine every time.
“No Maryland football,” Dude says. (For an explanation of Dude’s use of the word “No,” kindly refer to the Dude Language Guide.)
“Dude, use all your words,” I prompt.
“Iwanttogoto Maryland football game,” Dude responds.
“And when are we going to a Maryland football game?”
“In Novembeeeer!” Dude answers in his sing-song voice.
“When in November?” I ask.
“November fiiiiifth,” he sing-songs again.
**10 second pause**
“No Maryland football!”