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Gator Nation: Football Is an Act of Love

Gator Nation noun. 1) a community of people composed of multi-ethnic, religious, political, socio-economic backgrounds that are bound together by a mutual love of University of Florida football, tailgating, Florida sunshine, and all things blue and orange. 2) a collection of folks who know how to have a good time and perhaps how to do a keg stand.

I am sitting in the booth on our first full day of interviews. The sun is shining, as it does constantly here in lovely Florida,? and a slight breeze is blowing when two UF students walk past the booth. This is what I hear:

“What is that?” A blonde in flip-flips and short-shorts points to the MobileBooth.

“Oh,” says her tanned and muscular friend, “that’s where you go to talk about when you first realized you were a Gator.”

Our stay in Gainesville began with a roaring, or should I say growling, start. After opening day at the Harn Museum, we were invited by WUFT to the Gator Growl, the largest student organized pep rally in the country. It was so large that both John McCain and Barack Obama sent a videotaped address to the UF crowd. We became acquainted with Albert and Alberta Gator, we sang the UF alma mater, we even learned the Gator “chomp.” Steve Miller Band played, and the moment I first realized I was a Gator was right after they played “The Joker,”when the fireworks began. Let the Gator GROWL!

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4 Responses to “Gator Nation: Football Is an Act of Love”

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  • Looks like you all are having fun down in Gator Nation, makes me want to take a break from the small bites of the Big Apple and learn to chomp Florida style. You will have to teach the rest of us when you are back up here.

    Comment from Chaela on October 31, 2008 at 5:55 pm - Reply to this Comment
  • I work at the station with Sue Wagner and have been amazed at the identification people have with Story Corps. I’m a new transplant from South Florida, where there is little tradition, and I, too have fallen in love with the Gator Nation. I love your post’s title, Football is an Act of Love – I have found it to be true! I’m so glad you’re enjoying Gainesville.

    Comment from Pam on October 31, 2008 at 2:43 pm - Reply to this Comment
  • LET THE GATOR GROWL!

    Comment from Jeremy on October 31, 2008 at 12:25 pm - Reply to this Comment
  • Wow Nina! I now know a lot more about Gainesville than I did yesterday. I can’t wait to hear stories!

    Comment from Alex on October 31, 2008 at 10:39 am - Reply to this Comment

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