Hello, friends, and happy SEC Conference Schedule Kickoff weekend! As we all know, this is when things start to really count (not that you don’t count, Samford!) and we really begin to see what the future holds for our boys in blue. To help you navigate the games to come, I thought it might be helpful for Professor Tomlin to point out the types of UK fans we all know and love in a piece we’ll call Cultural Anthropology: The UK Fan Archetypes, and get to know our Wildcat-loving comrades. Shall we? Indeed, we shall. And feel free to add your own in the comment section. As always, happy Friday.
The Recruit Fanatic
Distinguishable traits: The Recruit Fanatic is always several steps ahead of the game and knows exactly which young players to watch as they grow closer to making their college choice. This fan is eager to google search any number of young teens in search of YouTube Mix Tape videos, clips of slam dunks, information on the personalities of their parents or likes and dislikes of their high school coaches.
Common quote: “Yeah, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist is good, but wait till you see Bernard Van Der Veer from Toluca Lake High School. That kid’s only a freshman and he makes Kidd-Gilchrist look like a chump. Too bad his mom has allergies to certain types of grass which grow in this region, but his dad knows Bret Bearup from summer camp and he sent a Facebook message to his girlfriend that his favorite color is blue. That’s gotta mean something.”
Distinguishable traits: The Septugenarian is often found in the low-lying areas of Rupp Arena, often toting an overlarge handbage filled with various lozenges, tissues and medications. Loud noises startle the Septugenarian and if provoked, its defense mechanism of staring predators down can be a formidable technique compensating for a lack of teeth. Its markings include blue-tinted fur and a quiet ambivalence to its surroundings.
Common quote: “That Darius Milner is really something. Did you know I saw on the news that he has scored ten thousand points? I’m cold!”
The Late Night Internet Crawler
Distinguishable traits: The Late Night Internet Crawler is a gatherer, a nocturnal creature often lit by the eerie glow of a computer screen in the very late hours of the evening. Its propensity to comment on all it sees makes it a very aware creature but his constant squawking fends off those who might otherwise mistake him for dangerous, and its facial markings generally consist of punctuation symbols.
Common quote: “LOL suk it UNC!!! Jus like Kansas bishes!!!!!! Davis FTW! :0p
The Guy Who Only Talks About Two Years from Now
Distinguishable Traits: This fan cannot be satisfied by the goings-on of the current season as he is consistently and alternately troubled or excited by seasons following the next season. His constant fear is that whoever he is watching will be gone next season, and then where are we going to be? Without Shabazz Muhammed, nowhere, that’s where.
Common quote: “It’s hard to get excited about this team when you think of what’s going to happen when these guys all leave. I mean, who does Calipari have coming up? He needs to start recruiting for 2014 or we’re going to be in big trouble.”
The “I Don’t Comment a Lot But Just Want To Say This” Guy:
Distinguishable Traits: Doesn’t comment a lot, but just wants to say this. Also a natural enemy to the Late Night Internet Crawler.
Common quote: “I don’t comment a lot, but I just want to say this. I can’t believe you guys are all harping on Terrence Jones. He’s an incredible player and he’s going to lead this team in the stretch. You guys are all crazy if you think he’s not as good as he was last year.”
The Today-is-the-Current-Status-of-the-Program Fan
Distinguishable Traits: The TITCSOTP can’t be bothered with preparing for the future, because it lives entirely in the moment by the previous night’s win or loss. This is why its mood is constantly in flux and, when riled, can be extremely dangerous. Often found in: barbershops, office breakrooms and backyard get-togethers. DO NOT approach the TITCSOTP without first consulting the most recent boxscore.
Common quotes: “That’s it. It’s over. These guys are terrible. I can’t believe they were down at the half to Arkansas-Little Rock. You think this team can beat Syracuse playing like that? No way.” AND/OR “These guys are amazing. Did you see that alley-oop last night against Loyola? We could totally beat Syracuse playing like this.”
The Guy Who Always Says We Might Lose
Distinguishable Traits: Known for a decidedly morose disposition, this fan feathers its nest against the worst possibilities. It often believes that losing is “good for them.”
Common Quote: “I tell you, I think we’re gonna get caught by Auburn. I just have a feeling. But might be a good thing for them to lose to someone like that, so they’ll take things seriously.”
The Middle-Aged Lady Who Creepily Latches on to One Player
Distinguishable Traits: Often disguised as a mother, grandmother or office secretary, the Middle-Aged Lady Who Creepily Latches on to One Player can be a slightly offputting creature, giving the veiled impression that she might like to mate with the object of her odd affections. Often the player in question will be slightly handsomer than the other players on the team, or seem like a particularly good person. Environmental note: the winter and spring of 2011 saw excessive growth of these creatures coinciding with with Josh Harrellson’s on-court successes.
Common Quote: “You know who I like. That Jarrod Polson. Calipari should play him more.”
The Guy Living Elsewhere Who Gets Things UK-Related from His Family for Christmas
Distinguishable Traits: Perhaps once native to the Commonwealth of Kentucky, the Guy Living Elsewhere Who Gets Things UK-Related from his Family for Christmas has migrated to other climes yet still continues to get University of Kentucky-licensed apparel, hats, mugs and blankets from his relatives still in Kentucky. This creature may or may not actually be a UK fan, but after being spotted and spoken relentlessly to by Kentuckians visiting his habitat will eventually appear to take on the behavior of a fan.
Common quote: “Yes, I grew up in Bowling Green but don’t get back there often. I sort of keep track of the Wildcats but it’s hard to do from Seattle, you know? I hear they’re good this season. I’ll have to catch them on TV sometime.”
The Doctor or Lawyer Who Wears a UK Sweater Vest to Games
Distinguishable traits: Greying, well-to-do, wears a sweater vest emblazoned with a small UK logo to games. Generally docile, this fan has inherited season tickets from The Septugenarian and, in later years, will begin to take on a similar appearance.
Common quote: “We should get going early, before the traffic starts.”