Veterans Day, Vacation Day?

For the past few weeks, I have been really looking forward to November 11th – the day I have no classes and no intentions of stepping foot on campus.  All that I, and most of my classmates, really want to do is catch my breath and get prepared for the last four CRAZY weeks of my first quarter at Fisher (during which we will have 4 Accounting Cases, 3 final papers, 3 final presentations, 4 daily assignments and 3 final exams – not to mention all of the reading that goes with those assignments…).  But, November 11th is more than just a vacation day, it’s Veterans Day.

Buckeye Battalion preparing to raise the Flag at an OSU home football game. My daughter loves the fact that the Flag "has legs" - two Buckeye Battalion members crouch under the Flag to keep it from touching the ground.

My father (Air Force), step-father-in-law (Marine Corp), brother-in-law (Army Reserves) and one of my cohort team mates (Army) are all Veterans.  I am immensely proud of each of them and would like to use this blog to honor them and all Veterans by taking us all back to the real meaning of Veterans Day.  Veterans Day began in 1918 as Armistice Day – a way to honor those who fought in World War I.  In 1954, Armistice Day was changed to Veterans Day in order to honor veterans of ALL wars.  Today, Veterans Day is designed to honor and thank living veterans who served in the military during times of peace and of war.

So, as you relax (or study) on this Veterans Day or hit the malls for some great sales, please be sure to stop for a moment to remember what this day truly means.  In fact, why not take that moment right now and watch this clip of the OSU ROTC Buckeye Battalion raising the Flag as the Ohio State Marching Band plays the U.S. National Anthem:

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My First Football Game

I went to my first football game on October 9. It was a game between Indiana Hoosiers and Ohio State Buckeyes. Buckeyes demonstrated their dominance on the field and played an exciting blow out game for all the home fans. By the way, after that game, Buckeyes became the No.1 team of the country.

the Horse Shoe

As a foreigner, I have heard thousands of times from my friends who had worked or studied in the United States that Americans are crazy about football; however, it was not until I came to America that I realized the fascination of football for Americans. It’s not only a game or an activity, but an all-day event for people to enjoy the exciting games and spend the weekend with their friends and families. You can see many people tailgating along the road and around the stadium. Especially, for the people in Columbus, Buckeye football must be one of the most important parts of their lives. Buckeyes football is famous and reputable nationally. Also, this traditional strong team bears the expectations and the pride of the city.

Tailgate outside the stadium

As a Buckeye, you must go to the “Horse Shoe” at least once. Ohio Stadium, with the seating capacity of 102,329, is the fourth largest on-campus football stadium in the U.S. I was fascinated by the atmosphere in the stadium as soon as I stepped in. The marching band played before the game started and at the halftime. People jumped and yelled during the game. The fans would also do stadium waves. It is common to see people do fan waves at a game; however, it is totally different when 100,000 people do the stadium waves at the same time. The most exciting part of the game to me must be the time when the marching band came up to our deck. They played the marches right in front of me and it was so exciting!

Overview of the stadium
Marching band at the halftime
Marching band came to the upper deck

The more I know about the American football culture, the more I understand why Americans love football and why it is the biggest pastime. The game itself is up tempo and very intense and the game also provides a great chance for people to get together! I am now really looking forward to the last game of the year, the traditional classic rivalry battle between Buckeyes and Wolverines!

a blow out game


Two tests on Monday, a paper due Tuesday, and a PowerPoint presentation due on top of that! Whew! …Some weekends are busier than others, and this was one of the busy ones. I will be happy when Wednesday is over.

In more entertaining news, I’m going to the Purdue game this weekend! It’s the first OSU football game I’ve attended since 2002. (You know, the year we went to the national championship game and actually won it.) I never went to one single game here as an undergrad. I just wasn’t that into football; probably because I had my fill in high school. I attended every game because I was in the marching band. Yeah. I’m a band geek. I played the clarinet.

I’m sure the Buckeyes will crush the Boilermakers on Saturday. I’m not nervous about this game as I was before the loss to Wisconsin. And it’s homecoming! There’s a lot of stuff going on Friday night. On Saturday, we’re going to get to campus early and check out the festivities beforehand. There’s always something going on before the game. My dad is babysitting the kiddo; hopefully she’ll take a nice long power nap like she did last Saturday and make it easy on him. She has a lot of energy.

I hate football!

O.K.  I don’t really hate football.  But I don’t love it either.  As a student at Ohio State (or simply a resident in Central Ohio) who doesn’t LOVE football can get a bit uncomfortable at times because it seems that everyone except you treats Buckeye Football like a religion of sorts and you are a leper, begging for mercy.  Even though I am not a true fan of Buckeye Football, I purchased season tickets (yes, that’s tickets – married students get to purchase TWO tickets, even if your significant other is also not really a fan…).  You may be wondering why I would spend all of that hard-to-come-by cash on tickets to five events that I don’t really care about.  The answer is actually quite simple:  I love marching bands, fanfare, pageantry and tradition.

This weekend my daughter and I took part in one of the Ohio State Marching Bands long-standing traditions: The Skull Session.  The Skull Session began as a final memorization run-through for the members of the band.  Over time the Skull Session has become a giant band driven pep rally with 10,000 of your closest friends!  The best part?  It’s absolutely FREE!  You don’t need a ticket; you don’t have to go to the game afterward.  All you have to do is show up (2 hours prior to kickoff) and have a good time.

During the Skull Session, the band practices all of the music they will play during the game including the score for Script Ohio.  As the band plays, the drum majors and the sousaphone players practice dotting the “i”.  I am a big fan of low brass (I played some tuba in my day…) so I’ve included a video of this practice “dotting” for you to enjoy as well!

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If you don’t love football, are not a fan of low brass, and do not care for pageantry or tradition, Central Ohio is still a great place to live.  Just treat OSU game days as I once did – a really great excuse to hit the shopping malls!  Everyone else is watching the game so you’ll have the entire place to yourself.

Crossover of Two Worlds

Just an aside before I begin – when the bloggers log into the dashboard to write a new post, we can see the blogs that have been written lately, if there are any new comments, etc. Today, as I was perusing through the new comments, I realized that Fisher Grad Life Bloggers are getting spammed by sites. I find it highly entertaining that we have gone from a site only our families read because they’re our family to being spammed. Of course our blog site is really well set up and all posts and comments are screened before being published so these spam comments will never reach your eyes, but…it is still funny. Also, this is my first official blog with my name changed to Amanda Wenner – shout out to Jason Hart who helped me gain access again after the system had no idea who I was.

Now – onto what I came here to do.

Some of you know that I was a member of the OSU Marching Band for 3 years. I play clarinet, but because the OSUMB is only brass and percussion, I was on student staff. The marching band is essentially run by 14 student staff members: 2 record fund managers (they sell cds and other OSUMB paraphernalia – all of the cds you see in the stores are sold by them), 3 secretaries and 1 librarian (the names speak for themselves), 3 uniform managers and 1 seamstress (all uniforms and pieces are distributed through this office and the seamstress fixes anything that rips and hems all of the pants, etc), 2 instrument managers (distribute all of the instruments and fixes broken instruments) and 2 audio/visual managers (they film all practices and performances, record everything and at the end of the year compile it all for a dvd). Of course there are the 5 directors: 1 director, 1 assistant director, 2 graduate assistants, and 1 percussion instructor. All of this goes together to keep the band running smoothly, like a well oiled machine.

Three years of my life were dedicated to this organization and met some amazing people and had wonderful experiences. Needless to say, I still try to keep up with what’s going on in marching band world. As I was facebook stalking a day or two ago and was looking through the OSUMB’s photographer’s website and realized that the squad leaders had a day-long retreat at the Ohio Union. As a part of their retreat, they had a speaker come in to talk about effective team leadership. And the guest speaker was none other than Fisher’s Tony Rucci. I think it is so cool that my undergraduate and graduate worlds have intertwined themselves. Here’s the link to all of the pictures if you want to browse through them.

For those of you who don’t know who Tony Rucci is, he is a professor in the College of Business, but not before he was an executive with 3 Fortune 100 companies. He was also fairly instrumental in the turnaround of Sears Roebuck and Co. You can also read his FCOB profile here.I really hope I’ll be able to take a course with him before I graduate. I think I’ve planned it out pretty well so that I have room to take an extra class Spring Quarter, so we’ll see how that goes.

But that’s all for now. Here’s a wedding picture, for your enjoyment. Also, congratulations to Megan Heighton (now Mueller) who got married a few weeks ago). Weddings are in the air!

First Dance