It was a blue Christmas

Jan. 04, 2013 @ 08:34 AM


When Elvis Presley first performed “Blue Christmas” in 1957, he probably had no idea that his words would ring true 55 years later. The last line of the song, “I’ll have a blue, blue, blue, blue Christmas”, describes my holiday experience perfectly.

I did indeed have a blue Christmas, but unlike Presley’s hit, it did not come from unrequited love. It came from the Duke Blue Devils and many other factors as well.

Thanks to generous gifts from family and friends, I got to witness Duke’s first bowl game since 1994, against Cincinnati, in person. I was decked out in several layers of royal blue to guard against a stiff wind whipping around section 522 of Bank of America Stadium and temperatures that dipped well below freezing.

The color of my clothes was far from the only thing that made my Christmas blue, however. I’m sure that same wind and temperature turned my feet a shade of blue that rivaled the Duke endzone as I teetered on the verge of hypothermia.

Then of course, I was blue because Duke lost the game. The fact that the Blue Devils lost the game did not bother me nearly as much as the way they lost it. Maybe it was because they were playing in Bank of America Stadium, but Duke engineered a Pantheresque collapse that I’m not even sure Cam Newton could manage.

The Blue Devils jumped out to a 16-0 lead, squandered it, and yet somehow found themselves in a position to win the game in the final 80 seconds. A fumble as they were crossing the goal line to win the game and two quick scores by the Bearcats, cost Duke the contest.

As sad as I was over the loss, my blue mood deepened when I got back home to Henrietta. Upon checking Facebook, I saw that seven of my college friends had gotten engaged in a 48 hour period. For someone who hasn’t even had a date since the George W. Bush administration, this fact was very frustrating.

I felt like the important things in life were passing me by. Everyone seemed to me moving forward while I was stuck in the same spot or moving backward. Maybe I have more in common with Elvis’s “Blue Christmas” than I thought.

My melancholia only lasted a few days until the calendar flipped over to 2013. I celebrated with a group of friends as we went to see Duke take on Davidson at Time Warner Cable Arena Wednesday night.

It was great to see fans of both schools fill the arena as shouts of “Let’s go Duke” and “Defense” competed with one another. This is a sight rarely seen in the Queen City since the Hornets left. Charlotte was excited about basketball again. I hope Michael Jordan was taking notes.    

The game did a lot to lighten my mood. Not only did Duke pull away for a 67-50 win to remain undefeated on the season, but I realized that I should be focusing on what I do have instead of what I don’t.

I have a loving family, great friends and a dream job where I can’t wait to start work every day. Not everyone can say that. And who knows what 2013 might hold.

I’m looking forward to the adventures that will unfold and what God has in store for me. All things considered, I really have no reason to be any kind of blue, except Duke Blue, and that fact makes me happy.