Tips for surviving the first football weekend in the Grove

Posted on Sep 1 2017 - 8:06am by Jonathan Gibson


Now that I have your attention, I want to give you some friendly advice. In the next 500 words, you will find the key to immortality.

OK, maybe not that.

But you will find a handy guide to what you should – and shouldn’t – bring with you on game day.

DO bring a water bottle so you can stay hydrated while inching along the crowded aisles of the Grove. If you run out, you might be able to harvest water out of the air using Boy Scout survival techniques, but don’t rely on this. Have a backup plan.

DON’T bring any kind of weapon on the university grounds. Even though you may be afraid of getting lost and needing to hunt a Grove squirrel for emergency rations, there’s always extra food to be found on the ground after the tailgating starts to wind down. Grab a couple chicken wings and leave the nunchucks at home.

DO make sure all your belongings are packed in a clear bag. This is an important new rule this year at the stadium. It may not be Prada or Fossil, but clear plastic is the new faux leather, so you’ll still be styling and profiling no matter what.

DON’T wear pointy heels in the Grove. Yes, they may be cute, but if your heel looks more like a tent stake than footwear, you might want to reconsider them. The beautiful, green grass of the Grove will quickly turn into an actual mud pit as coolers are drained, drinks are spilled and water from heaven falls in a torrential downpour, and your Jimmy Choos won’t stand a chance of survival.

DO wear sunscreen and bring a pair of sunglasses. A strange interstellar phenomenon happens each game day here in Oxford – the moon aligns with Jupiter and the Andromeda Galaxy reaches its parallax at precisely noon Saturday, which in turn amplifies the sun’s corona and makes the Earth’s atmosphere around the city of Oxford become what scientists call “really freaking humid.” You’ll find this term to be quite accurate. Protect yourself with a high-SPF sunscreen and shield your eyes so you don’t miss a single second of the game.

DON’T bring flags of any kind into the stadium. Seriously, guys – don’t do it. Even if you’ve attached your great-grandmother Ethel’s quilt to the walking staff of your ancestor the King of Iceland, no one will appreciate your patchwork family crest the way Ethel did. No one.

DO bring a good attitude and sportsmanlike conduct with you. If we lose, we lose with grace and kindness and WHAT THE *$@$&!, MAN! HOW COULD YOU DROP THAT? THIS GAME IS RIGGED! COME ON, REF! ARE YOU BLIND?

Sorry, I lost my cool there for a second.

Football season is the most wonderful time of the year here at Ole Miss, and even though the Grove might overwhelm you at times, we at The Daily Mississippian are here to guide you through the chaos. If you follow this manual, you’ll be the star of all the tailgates and the MVP of all the games.

If you find yourself being carried on the shoulders of extremely tall, muscular football players, you don’t have to thank me. Just enjoy the moment and know that I take cash payments in the form of small bills in a medium-sized manila envelope.