I just ready Scott Davis’s Gamecock Central piece, We Are All From South Carolina. When I saw the title, I thought a selfish thought. Crap, he’s going to blog about something I should have blogged about before now. Dangit!
Then I read his heartfelt piece. Struck a chord. Scott has a better claim to South Carolina than do I. My father was a Naval Officer and we traveled around. I guess that makes me a navy brat, right? Yeah, I guess.
I was born in Monterey, California, and spent a great deal of my young life in a place called Ocean Beach, San Diego. It was truly awesome being in OB in the late 60s and early 1970s. My middle schooling was there. At Collier Junior High. Right through the 9th grade.
Then we moved to Alexandria, Virginia. I lived there too. In elementary school and high school. I didn’t move to Goose Creek, South Carolina until May 1975. I was 17. It was only then my South Carolina journey began. Goose Creek, Columbia, Greenville; those places are my local connections to South Carolina. I took my own stint in the U.S. Naval Reserve from 1980-1985. That’s when I had my, We’re all from South Carolina moment.
I was deployed to Washington State. It’s rare to meet fellow South Carolinians out there. Yeah, I call myself a South Carolinian. I became one when I went to The University of South Carolina. But I didn’t recognize all of us until I left.
Yarr, Clemson. Those people were the enemy. I enjoyed going up to a Bengal Ball a time or two with my club lacrosse team, Yazoo! But those Clemson people . . . I didn’t recognize them as friends.
But when you’re away from South Carolina, and the people of South Carolina, you begin to notice how special a breed we are. So when you run into another one, it’s special. Even Clemson people. I ran into some. And found out they were cool. That’s my we’re all from South Carolina realization. They love football. They love South Carolina. They’re pretty much just like us except they like the wrong team.