Friday, November 28, 2014

Day 332- A Deacon First

Today is Black Friday. Laura spent all night shopping for deals for our family Christmas.  I spent the night sleeping.  I've spent the day visiting with family, watching some football, and eating delicious leftovers.  It makes for a great day, but not a plethora of opportunities for a "first."

While watching football, I started thinking about team mascots.  Some seem designed to strike fear into the other teams' hearts like Tigers, Wildcats, and Wolverines.  Some I'm just not sure about like the Ducks, Beavers, and the Banana Slugs (yes, that is actually a team mascot at a school in California).  There are a couple that really bug me. One is the Wake Forest Demon Deacons. I thought this started as a Baptist school.  Who thought a demon deacon was a good idea?  Where did that come from?  Since this is a year of "firsts," I decided to look up the history of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons for my "first."

Most of this information came from the Wake Forest website.  Their website says the Wake Forest athletic teams were originally known as the "Baptists" or "The Old Gold and Black." However, in 1922 the editor of the school newspaper, Mayor Parker '24, created the alliteration "Demon Deacons" to describe a major defeat over Trinity (now Duke). When Wake Forest College's publicity director, Henry Belk, began incorporating the nickname into his press releases, newspapers from around the country started to proclaim the success of the Demon Deacons.  

It was not until much later that the nickname became the mascot that we know today. In 1941, Jack Baldwin ('43) was dared by a few of his fraternity brothers to dress up as a Demon Deacon for an athletic contest. Baldwin decided to dress in a dignified combination of top hat and tails and proceeded to ride into the athletic match on a Carolina Ram, umbrella in hand. For the Wake Forest fandom, it was love at first sight.
"We tried to make him a little more dignified than other mascots," Baldwin says. "So we dressed up like you would think an old Baptist Deacon would dress up."

Here's an interesting story I found on one of the "deacons." The most famous Deacon of all time was Bill Shepherd '60 of Linville, North Carolina. Shepherd's fantastic basketball shot at Raleigh is now a Deacon legend. A natural clown, his antics ranged from out-twirling the nation's leading baton twirler at Clemson - with two plumbers' friends - to answering the Auburn fans' cry of "War Eagle" with "Turkey Buzzard," and being soundly thrashed for doing so. But the times Shepherd is most proud of are the ones when he helped prevent fights at the Carolina games.

Homegrown satsumas

The demon deacon- why not the dedicated deacon, devoted deacon, distinguished deacon, dynamic deacon, or even the domineering deacon (for football not church)?  This guy could even be the dapper deacon

That's kind of an interesting history.  I still don't like combining demon with deacon.  It is interesting how one editor can use what he thinks is a cute alliteration and it sticks for years to come.  It is a good reminder to think about the words we use.  Last Sunday in choir practice we were asking about someone that is a member of the choir. About that time, she walked in and one of our choir members said, "Well, speak of the angel."  Most people say speak of the devil and she said she just did not like the using the word "devil" to speak of a friend. I applaud her choice of words.  I heard a pastor say one time about a great service that all heaven broke loose.  Amen, what a great description.  People are so loose with words these days and as a follower of Jesus I don't want to fall into that trap.  Jesus said in Matthew 12:36, "But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken."  That should be enough to remind us to be careful with our words.

One reason is that our words have such power.  We have the power to make someone's day or break their heart with our words.  Much of our happiness or sadness in life depends on the words we use and the words we hear.  Why not make someone's day with a wisely chosen word?

Loving the sounds (at least some of them) of the abundant life,

3 things I thank God for today
1. Sight of an airplane flying in the sky
2. Fitly spoken words
3. Toothbrush

No comments:

Post a Comment