Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Roots of a Family Run Deep





In the center of town in the
Loveliest Village on the Plains
stands a mighty Oak Tree.

This corner has been the scene of Auburn victories
for many decades and has been said to be one of the greatest
traditions in college football.
After all football victories the trees on the corner of
College and Magnolia
turn from green to white...



This was a picture that was taken after Auburn brought
home the National Championship after their perfect season in 2010.

Today, the beloved trees at Toomer's
have a Tiger sized fight ahead of them.

On January 27th, someone who referred to himself as
"Al from Dadeville"
called into the Paul Finebaum talk radio show
and claimed that he has poisoned the trees at Toomer's.
He said exactly what he had used to poison them
and that they would be dead within a couple of months.
He claimed to have done this after Alabama's loss to Auburn
in the 2010 Iron Bowl.

Not much else was said about it, because really...
could someone be that mean?
That stupid?  That ridiculous?

The University took the comment seriously
and took soil samples the next day
and sent them off to be tested.

Yesterday the results came back and the worst was found to be true.
A herbicide that is commonly used to kill tress
out of fence rows was  found in the soil samples. 
Reports say that the amounts found in the samples ranged from
0.78 parts per million, which is considered to be a "very lethal does"
 according to the hortocultural department at the University,
to 51 parts per million...which is
65 times the lethal dose.

The trees will not likely survive.
The University is taking all measures
to save the trees which are believed to be
over 130 years old.
Unfortunately, this was not the first attack on the tree this year.
Earlier this season, after the Auburn/Georgia game,
someone tried to catch the toilet paper on fire...
I assume to catch the entire tree on fire.
While the fire did not take the trees,
this act just might, along with several other trees and shrubs
that are in the surrounding area.


Now, for those of you who may read this and are not
from the state of Alabama,
You may not understand the emphasis that is put
on Football...specifically
College Football.

Every year from the August to December...
divisions are made in this state...
One wears Crimson and White
the other
Orange and Navy Blue.
Some laugh and say that you are taught from birth
which colors you will choose, but whatever team
you pull for...it becomes part of you.
Unfortunately, an extreme dislike for the other team becomes
part of the equasion for some.
This goes on year after year, but for some reason
this year seems to be worse.
In 2009, the University of Alabama's football program
was given the two top honors...
the Heisman Trophy
 and they won the National Championship.
They were on top of the world.
When the 2010 Football season began...no one gave
Auburn a chance...
but the Tigers came out fighting!
They fought from behind and went on
to have a perfect season!!
Cam Newton was awarded the Heisamn Trophy.
We won the SEC Championship and then on to
the National Championship.

This had never been done in Football history.
Back to back Heisman Trophy winners
and back to back National Championships
in the same state!
What should have been a time of celebration and pride for
our state was anything but.

This entire season, the smack talk has flown on Facebook
and Twitter and around the water coolers at
offices around the state.
People have completely lost sight of what is important.
Many have lost sight of the Golden Rule...
While some can keep it a
"Friendly Rivalry"
too many have taken things too far..
meanspirited things said with no other purpose than
to simply cause the other to become angry...
completely loosing sight of what is important.
Which has absolutely NOTHING to do with football.
I have lost a lot of respect for some who can simply just not
keep their mouth SHUT!
At the end of the day, whether your team won or lost...is not the point!
I can guarantee you that when you stand before God
when your life is over,
He is not going to care if you are an Auburn or an Alabama fan!
However, He will care about how you conducted yourself and the
things you have said. 

Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.
Phillipians 1:27

Now, people have even lost sight of the laws of the land.
This man who called in claimed to be an Alabama fan,
whether he is or is not...one thing is clear,
the larger majority of the Alabama fans and especially the
Auburn Family,
think that the actions of this one man are
absolutely unacceptable.
There is an ongoing investigation into the poisoning.
The chemical used in the act is not readily available for
just anyone to purchase...it is regulated by the EPA.
From what I hear, records are kept on who it is sold to an when.
So I have no doubt that whoever did this will be found.
He was dumb enough to call into a nationally syndicated
radio show and spout his mouth off,
so I'm sure he'll do it again.




This picture of Austin was taken after
Auburn's season opening win
to start the 2008 Football Season.
This is stil a fond memory of his.
One I hope he is able to do again.

I have no double the Auburn Family
is doing what it can to save these trees,
and if they are unable to survive,
I am sure the Auburn Family
is
"ALL IN"
for a new tradition.



 

2 comments:

  1. First question: Who TPs all the trees and how long does it take? Second question: Who has the great misfortune of having to clean all the TP out of the trees? Third question: What kind of idiot allows a fun & friendly school rivalry to overtake any semblance of common sense they might have ever possessed???!?!?! Stupid, stupid, stupid!!! It's hard to believe that some people would take it that far. I'm glad he did shoot his mouth off...maybe he'll be caught and have to pay the price for his ignorant actions. What a blockhead!

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  2. Ha Ha...OK, the fans are the ones who roll the tress, after a big sports win, the tradition started many, many years ago and has grown into a long standing college tradition. They even have toilet paper available when you walk out of the stadium! They do not roll all of the trees in Auburn, just these two particular oak trees across from Toomer's Drug Store. It's great. The Forestry department at the school cleans the trees out the first of the week during football season. And for your third question...you are right on...he is an idiot. They caught him a few days after the story broke. He thought he was going to become a "hero" but really he just became the most disliked man in the state of Alabama. He was arrested and is still awaiting trial...his lawyers keep dumping him and trying to move the trial out of county. We just have to wait and see...

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