The jump set off a terrible howl that put tears in everyone’s eyes, including Sweetie Pie’s. Gene had known he was going to have to put Sweetie Pie down soon, but he hadn’t been able to bring himself to do it.
Now, there was no choice. Sweetie Pie had to make a visit to the vet to end the pain. It was horrible, as anyone who has ever had to put down a pet will testify.
It was also 30 minutes before kickoff.
Bad as I felt, I wondered silently if we were going to miss the game. As it turns out, we saw it all. Mourning didn’t end, but it did get postponed.
Before the night was over, you fans were mourning right along with three strangers down in Athens, Texas, for totally different reasons. But you had cheered mightily that night too, after a great Sooner comeback. (In the interest of full Lehmann disclosure, he did remain a Sooner loyalist throughout the evening).
It was a bittersweet night for us all, but I tell you there was something very strange in the air that night.
You know, and I know, if these two teams had played 10 more times, OU would probably have won nine of them.
I was happy to see the Broncos win for my friends back in Idaho, sad to see the Sooners lose, and heartbroken that Sweetie Pie had somehow been sacrificed to the heavens in all this mix.
So, several years later, when Gene asked me to come back to my home state of Oklahoma, I rushed right up. Soon as I got here, we settled down, without a dog, to see the Sooners get justice for ruining our childhoods against the hated Irish of Notre Dame.
Surely, this time after more than a half century of suffering, it would be our time, our luck, not the luck of the Irish.
Surely ...Yeah, surely.
Can we be friends now? I’ve tried to be honest with you.
If not, feel free to lie to me.
Art Lawler is a writer for The Ada News.