Football Fridays forever

Joe Toppe

October 4, 2013

It’s Friday night, and several weeks remain before the temperature will demand I wear a jacket to cover the games.

I’ve got my camera riding shotgun, my press badge dangling from the rear view mirror and I’m off.

Several miles out and I am already seeing a significant increase in traffic as I examine the young faces packed inside the passing cars, every cheek wrinkled by a large smile and every eye, wide and dazzling.

Amidst a winding trail of brake lights I finally park and head out to the action.

As I look down upon the light of the stadium with the soft glow of a cloudless sunset on my shoulders, I allow the lens of my camera to steer me and I am happy to report its football season again.

I enjoy driving the back roads of Pickens County with the windows down and the last of the warm weather’s humidity in the air.

I enjoy the youthful mood of high school sports and the connection made between a community and one ridiculously biased reporter, (yours truly).

And what kind of local would I be if I didn’t observe a quiet moment of well-wishes before Coach Grayson Howell led his Green Wave onto the field?

I have no idea where my career will lead me, life has way of moving us around, but I do know I would want Coach Howell, Tim Mullis, and everyone at Easley high School to know that while I was here, I was right there with them.

And many years from now when life’s drifting has steered me miles from this place, I’m sure that I’ll remember nights like these driving along a two-lane road with the windows down, covering high school football in Easley, South Carolina.