Fall, Family, and Football

By: Will Barrett

Fall is the happiest time in the South, especially October; every big sport is on at this time (college football, basketball, baseball), the temperature gets to that perfect medium where it’s not too hot or cold,  you can start wearing flannel shirts and be comfortable again, the leaves start changing colors…  I could keep going if I choose.  Not only is Halloween coming right up, but Thanksgiving is also around the corner, which means you can stuff yourself with some of Grandma’s best cooking, and the biggest holiday of them all, Christmas, will sneak up on you like a fat man in red fleece (no offense to Santa).  Girls around this time also fuel their pumpkin spice addictions with complicated coffee drinks, and Starbucks starts swimming in cash.

Other than perfect weather and college football, what’s the most important reason to love fall?  Think about it, the dropping temperature makes us seek warmth and comfort, the major American holidays have us all gathering around the dinner table, the turkey, mostly the Christmas tree, and at the end of December, we’ve given each other gifts that had thought put into it, gifts that show how much we appreciate and love each other… That, I believe, is what fall (and winter) is really about, bringing families closer together.  A lot of times we take it for granted, and we forget the most important thing in our lives is not how far you can get in your careers and how fast, it’s not how far you can get in the rat race for success, it’s always about coming home to the people that you love – it could be your mother, maybe your wife and children.  Regardless, they shouldn’t take second place to your own ambitions and desires.

We have a tradition in our family that we recently started: every Sunday afternoon, my family will get together in our house and eat.  It’s like a mini-Thanksgiving if you think about it. Everyones’ happy, laughing, telling stories, just having a good time in general.  Why on earth would anybody ever ruin something like this?  As a man with autism, I’ve found that to be one of the most confusing things about people: whether purposefully or inadvertently, they go out of their way to destroy something as precious as a family.  You can make every excuse you want, but the truth, no matter how you spin it, is that it’s just selfish.  Don’t ever take your family for granted, because if you start loosening your grip on it, it could slip between your fingers before you realize it.

God bless, and from all of us here in the South, Happy Fall Y’all!