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Undercover Barner: 30 for 30

This week’s Undercover Barner shares thirty things she’s learned in thirty years

NCAA Football: Auburn at Arkansas Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Looks like someone got the message to our Tigers about my birthday wish. Despite promising to keep myself from getting worked up about the game as a gift to myself, I was thrilled to see Auburn outperform Arkansas so thoroughly on my birthday. I saw most of the second half after dinner with my family, and I sincerely enjoyed Auburn’s offensive and defensive showings.

Saturday was a good day all around, especially considering it was a birthday that some people dread, myself included. Thirty is a scary number before you get there, but now that I’m on the other side of it, I’m excited about what the future holds. I feel like I’ve learned a lot in 30 years, and in that vain, I’d like to share some of that knowledge* with you.

Thirty Things I’ve Learned In Thirty Years:

  1. There’s no right or wrong way to be a sports fan. If you love something, you do you.
  2. Almost. Like don’t be a jerk to people or light stuff on fire.

3. It’s okay to cheer for other teams, especially if those teams mean a lot to people you love. You don’t have to apologize for your world being bigger than four hours on a Saturday night. See number 1.

4. It’s also okay to want nothing but bad things for certain other teams because they’re composed of 100% pure evil. Or something.

5. Two Bits is the worst cheer because it’s old. Track ‘Em is the best cheer because it’s vintage. It’s different.

6. I mean Bodda Getta is the actual best but I needed the juxtaposition. I regret nothing.

7. What you wear to games doesn’t actually matter, but if it makes you feel better, embrace it. Spoiler: I embrace it.

8. Don’t put tomatoes in the refrigerator** unless you want them to be flavorless mush blobs.


10. Whataburger over In-N-Out. Go Astros. See number 3.

11. Related: Jose Altuve is the most precious person alive.

12. Being weird is probably the best way to be.

13. Not caring about anything doesn’t make you cool. It makes you uninteresting.

14. Cancer doesn’t care who you are or how much money you have or what you’ve done in your life.

15. Mental health is just as important as physical health. We all need help sometimes.

16. Sexual harassment is not a compliment.

17. Most people are just trying to do the best they can.

18. Wedding reception playlists*** are not as complicated as people make them out to be. Basically set up an “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” Pandora station and write down all of the songs it plays you. Then do “Right Thurr.”

19. Books are magical. So are crossword puzzles.

20. But sudoku is the devil. We all have different strengths and types of intelligence. That’s why diversity of background, opinion, and ability is important.

21. Watching good comedy will make you smarter.

22. Professional football isn’t as interesting as college football. Don’t @ me.

23. Having a dog is the best part of being a person. Cats are okay too.

24. Leaving voicemails is the single most awkward and horrible part of having a job. Checking them is almost as bad.

25. Literally no one likes a creepy DM. See number 16.

26. Haribo Gold Bears are the best bear-shaped snack but I’m willing to listen to arguments for Teddy Grahams.

27. Sharks are awesome.

28. Touchdown celebrations make football better.

29. Love is a choice that you make every single day.

30. It’s actually cool to enjoy your work and be good at your job. After all, we believe in work, hard work.

On a personal note, that was the best way I could think of to segue into some exciting news I’ve been wanting to share for a little while now: Tomorrow will be my last day with the Public Defender in Jefferson County. I’ve so enjoyed working in Birmingham and I’m sad to leave, but next week I’ll have the honor of joining the Alabama Attorney General’s Office. I signed a lease for a house in Montgomery on Saturday, and I’ll be moving this weekend (thanks conveniently timed bye week!). There are some big changes coming up in my life, including this space that we’ve shared for the last six years. My new job will necessitate a shrinking of my online presence so I can represent the State of Alabama most effectively. So this will be the last season I will write Undercover Barner (for real this time). When I considered shutting this down in the past, I always came back because I so loved having a platform to share my love for Auburn and weird jokes with y’all. I was always given editorial freedom, even after I abruptly abandoned my co-editor duties once 1L year got too intense, and I’ll always appreciate that. I’ll write more about this when Auburn’s season comes to an end, but I think it’s getting on toward time for someone else to step onto my favorite soapbox.

However, that’s a worry for another day. Right now, Auburn is looking at a much-needed bye week, for both the players and the fans. It’s been a roller coaster ride so far, and it’ll be nice to have a Saturday off to relax (and/or move). What is your favorite way to spend the bye week? Mine is yelling at the television about teams I irrationally hate****.

Until next time—War Eagle!

*Opinion ;-)

**One time Alton Brown tweeted back at me about this and it’s probably the second best thing that’s ever happened to me on Twitter. The first was Tre Mason liking one of my tweets about how precious he was.

***I have so many opinions about this topic. See my “Car Karaoke” Spotify playlist for more great examples.

****I mean, I feel like it’s rational but all of the “You need to calm down”s suggest otherwise.