by cheri block
My husband is playing golf at this very moment with Bob.
Bob was a year older than we were in high school. He was the star football player and a heart-throb. All of us younger girls began to drool when Bob and the other senior football players walked through the Quad with their kelly green lettermen’s sweaters on.
To me, their shoulders looked like big rounds of bedrock attached to very trim torsos.
If ever there were a human body oozing with perfect coordination, it was Bob’s.
I was the head cheerleader for two years in a row during those years when cheerleaders actually lead cheers.
We were not gymnasts, bimbos, pom-pom airheads, or idiots.
We lead cheers from the side lines when high school football was popular in the San Francisco Bay Area eons ago in the 60’s.
From my vantage point there on the sidelines, I had an opportunity to assess the game as it progressed through the quarters. After all, I needed to call monosyllabic cheers such as
“Block that kick,” and “Touch down.”
Every now and then, I would branch out and insist that the rooting section, dressed in white, would try its hand at spelling “W- A (clap, clap) R- R (clap clap) I -O- R -S (clap clap).”
I would ask my squad to lead what today we would call politically incorrect cheers. Today, those cheers would be censored. Everything has become so beige.
For example, if you can spell, you read that our mascot was the Warriors. Lakota Sioux Warriors. Copying the cheers I had heard at Stanford University across the Bay, I lead the spirit squad in this one: “Give ’em the Ax, the Ax, the Ax, Right in the Neck, the Neck, the Neck.”
How violent. But boy did the crowd stand up and roar. It was especially effective when we were playing our arch rivals–the Huskies. Poor dogs. De-capitated by a strong and noble Indian tribe.
While on the sideline I was supposed to be 100% focused on the business at hand (the game), but I occasionally checked out the many hunks whose bodies were stuffed into tight white football pants.
My boyfriend Ron was on the football team at that time and most of the time, I was staring at him in his white pants. He looked pretty good too.
But every now and then, my eyes wandered over to the star of the team in 1966-67.
So it was fun to see Bob today, fifty years later. As we talked, my mind drifted back to those wonderful years on the sidelines.
But I was a good girl and said,
” Bye guys, have fun!