2.17.2011

How the Grinch Stole Toomer's Corner

Inspired by recent news on the campus of Auburn University, I wrote this story, adapted from "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" by Dr. Seuss:

Every Who down in Auburn liked Toomer's a lot...
But the Grinch, who lived just north of Auburn, did NOT!
The Grinch hated Auburn! The whole football season!
Now, please don't ask why. No one quite knows the reason.
It could be his head wasn't screwed on just right.
It could be, perhaps, his houndstooth shoes were too tight.
But I think the most likely reason of all May have been that his brain was two sizes too small.

But whatever the reason,
His brain or his shoes,
He stood there on Toomer's Corner, hating the Whos,
Staring down with a sour, Grinchy frown at the happy festivities there in their town.
Every Who down in Auburn was celebrating now...
An Iron Bowl win. SEC Championship-bound.

"They roll all these trees!" he snarled with a sneer. 
"And their Auburn spirit just grows...it always begins here!"
Then he growled, with his Grinch fingers nervously drumming,
"I MUST find some way to stop that spirit from coming!"
For, soon, he knew... All the Who girls and boys
Would rush Toomer's Corner, Oh, the Noise! Noise! Noise! NOISE!

So he loaded some herbicide on his ramshackle truck
And headed for the plains,
Where the Whos were planning roast Duck.
The Toomer's oak trees bore a long-standing mission:
Wearing toilet paper after each victory. A tradition.
A symbol of all that the college holds dear,
A place for rejoicing, a place for good cheer.
But the Grinch slithered and slunk, with a smile most unpleasant,
Around Toomer's oaks with a chemical "present."

"Pooh-pooh to the Whos!" he was grinch-ish-ly humming.
"They'll find out soon that no spirit is coming!”
“I'll call Paul Finebaum, that's what I'll do!”
”I'll brag on the radio! They'll all cry! BOO-HOO!”
“That's a noise..." grinned the Grinch, "That I simply MUST hear!"

So he paused.
And the Grinch put his hand to his ear.
And he DID hear a sound rising over the plains.
It started in low...then...loud as steam trains:
Every Who down in Auburn, the tall and the small, was singing!
Without any oak trees at all.
He HADN'T stopped the Auburn spirit from coming. It CAME!
Somehow or other, it came just the same.
And the Grinch, now in custody, with nowhere to go, stood puzzling and puzzling: "How could it be so?"
"It came without toilet paper! It came without oaks!"
"It came without Bammers and Cam Newton jokes!"

And he puzzled for hours, locked up in a cell, serving time for his crime, as far as we can tell.
A federal offense is crossing the line.
We hope he stays there for a mighty long time.
We may never know if the Grinch in this tale
Changes his heart, sensing his epic fail.
Even if he did...short of a miracle from above,
It's prob'ly too late to save those trees that we love.

BUT...

Though the Whos down in Auburn grieve the trees they once knew,
the Auburn spirit lives on…
…fearless and true.

by Jennifer Farris

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