This past weekend I (James) had the pleasure of joining Julio, Boswell, and 9311 other Crazies at the North Carolina game in Cameron, only my second visit to Cameron since graduating in 1982, and my first for a Carolina game.
As you might imagine, it was wonderful.
Friday afternoon, Boswell and I ventured over to Krzyzewskiville, to see some folks we knew, and just to see how it all works. In my day, campouts were much different. In a sense, they were harder, since we didn't have the concepts to tenting or tent order. The people in line managed the line, and were accountable only to themselves. We just threw down sleeping bags under the overhang at the student entrance to Cameron. It is easy to be the curmudgeon and say it was better the way we did it... But it would be a lie. After chatting with the Village Idiot of Krzyzewskiville, and just seeing how people were enjoying themselves, I'm confident that they've found a better way. It may not be perfect, but there were a thousand people out there having fun. They were getting the great colonial animal together, and it was a party.
Of course, Krzyzewskiville is a lot more commercial than 20 years ago. There was some amusement area sponsored by Coca Cola, and Snapple had also made a bid for some sponsorship.
Saturday morning, Julio and I came back, watched some hair painting and got our copies of the cheer sheet. We watched how the line monitors organized the entry of the Crazies... a bit more rational than our efforts to push down the doors for Marquette in 1979.
Inside, it was almost as if I had never graduated. True, the current students had the best seats, as they should. My seats were in the rafters, literally. I still stood the whole game, and attempted to keep up producing some noise from where I was. I honestly don't remember if we were that loud, or that coordinated. I've seen and read others who have complained that the Cameron Crazies have lost something in recent years; I just don't see it. They are loud, they are clever, and they have all the traits of the great classes of Crazies in the past. You could see they got int he heads of the Tar Heels, and that had to have been worth a few points. They should be proud.
Despite no longer being a student, I still felt I was a small part of the animal, and it was a nice feeling to remember.