Reed Ramlow

Willie Earl, the Grateful Dead did have it right, it has been a long strange trip, through the years. In 1970, we were repatriating to the USA from Clark Air Base in the Philippines, right after the Cambodia invasion that my air force dad helped to support, landing first in San Francisco to see the lunatic fringe at work and then on to the backwater of Jacksonville, Arkansas, our next posting. It was a stunning turn of events after an overseas adventure and there was no greater reverse culture shock than being caught in the maelstrom of Razorback football fan hysteria, “woooo…pig soooie!” A year after the vaunted ’69 shootout, there was great anticipation of another dogfight, but the Texas wishbone and Woo Woo Wooster slaughtered the pigs, 42-7. (They went squealing to the SEC a couple decades later, followed recently by our longtime friends in College Station.) Fast forward to 1974-75, it was college decision time in my senior year in high school in San Antonio, and I could still not bring myself to liking the idea of Texas and the Horns after the trauma in Arkansas. Nonetheless, I made the pilgrimage to Austin, saw the UT tower, the communications school, the stadium…it was all large and I was impressed, but what made the biggest impression was the Drag. Mid-1970′s, Austin was in its truly weird heyday. There were hippies all over the place, selling bongs, beads, pipes and trinkets in random makeshift stalls all up and down Guadalupe Ave. The whole street reeked of incense, covering the tracks of a drag that was up in smoke. Commies controlled the city council; the “heads” ruled the day. Post-60′s, the radicals had won, but as Hunter Thompson wrote, they had reached the high water point — the wave finally broke and rolled back. Five years later we marched into the Reagan era. In any event, I was hooked on Austin, and hooked on the Horns. The strange trip continues. Austin needs to stay weird and Texas football needs to get back on track. Woo Woo to our backfield trio that’s trying to take us back to the rampaging running game, and we’re counting on ‘em to lay a whuppin’ on those visiting Cowboys from the northern sagebrush. RIP Pigpen and Jerry G.

Comments are closed.