Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Happy moment

Last night, I was eating a meatball sub from Subway and it reminded me of something. The last time I had a meatball sub was last spring when I went to watch Michigan State in the Final Four with my mother. Although it all seemed rather mundane at the time, I now realize that this was one of my favorite moments of 2009. More so than graduation, my senior prom, my birthday or any other event of the year, going to the Final Four with my mother made me feel a certain happiness that enveloped every part of the evening. When I tried to find a reason behind this, my thoughts always drifted to three main aspects of the night: Detroit, Michigan State University and my mother. It was my love and admiration for these things that made the night special. Since it's difficult to understand these things without knowing how they relate to me, I'll try to explain their importance and why they're special.

Detroit: Although I've never actually lived in Detroit, I have numerous connections to the "Motor City" through friends, family and the fact that it is the largest and most famous city in Michigan. Also, my mother was very involved in Detroit and its issues and often acts as an informal ambassador to people who aren't familiar with the area. For all of these reasons, I have developed a fondness for the city of Detroit and everything that it represents. Still, despite all of my warm feelings, Detroit has developed a negative image in the eyes of the media and the country as a whole. Detroit hosting the Final Four was an opportunity to oppose some of these negative viewpoints, and I think the city succeeded in that regard.

Michigan State: Growing up in the Lansing area, there was one college team that reigned supreme (It doesn't hurt that my mother is an alumna). In my house, rooting for Michigan State was as necessary as eating, sleeping and breathing. However, when I went to high school, I found myself surrounded by supporters of that dreadful school in Ann Arbor with the tacky colors and an overgrown badger as their mascot. To see Michigan State in the Final Four was a chance to sing the Spartan fight song with pride in the midst of a sea of wolverines. Also, on a more deeper level, seeing my team in the Final Four was a testament to the power of faith, will power and positive thinking. throughout the tournament, I believed that, even when victory seemed out of reach, Michigan State would somehow continue to win. Although it may sound silly to expend so much energy cheering and screaming at the television when my actions have no logical or measurable impact on the outcome of the game, seeing Michigan State play at Ford Field gave me a glimmer of hope that I was somehow willing the team to succeed.

My mother: Truthfully, words cannot accurately describe what my mother means to me. Apart from the fact that she is responsible for my existence, I love her because she has raised me, cared for me and helped make me who I am. Although it seems insignificant, the simple gesture of asking me to go to the Final Four with her is something that I greatly appreciate. Furthermore, as a major influence in my life, my mother planted the seeds of love and admiration for both the city of Detroit and Michigan State University. Her passion for these things have left an indelible mark on me, and the chance to enjoy them with a person who shares this love and passion is one of the greatest gifts of all.

Although Detroit is still looked down upon and Michigan State eventually lost in the National Championship game, the 2009 Final Four at Ford Field will remain as one of my fondest memories of last year. If I can experience one moment that is even half as good as this one in 2010, I think I'll be able to call it a good year.

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