Leading up to the big game this past weekend, the Daily Tar Heel ran the “classic” 1990 column entitled “Why I Hate Duke”. Normally, I’m open to some rivalry-inspired jabs and jibes despite my Blue Devils loyalty. Having moved over to Chapel Hill for grad school, I’ve made friends who wear a slightly lighter shade of blue, and any banter between us is generally good-natured. I even want Carolina to have a decent season, because it’s more exciting when our match-ups could be anyone’s game for the taking. But…this article showcased the worst side of the state vs. private school argument.
Really, UNC? The worst thing you can say about Duke is that you had an obnoxious guide and an embarrassing moment during your college tour? Your inferiority complex is showing, and it ain’t a good look for ya.
Now that I’m getting to witness life on the other side, I have been surprised by the population of Tar Heels who have a passionate hatred for Dookies and expect us all to be silver-spoon fed, racist, elitist, arrogant a-holes. At Duke, we would never personalize the rivalry like that. We respect Carolina as a fine institution and for us, it’s more about the big event than who’s in the stands cheering.
Yes, I do love Duke. But, you won’t see me titling this post, “Why I Hate UNC”. I love Duke because I worked hard to get there and stay there. Because I met fabulous, down-to-earth, brilliant people who still make me proud to know them – including my husband. Because I earned my degree through more than a few work-study jobs and a whole bunch of effort. Not because I get my kicks from painting others with broad, unflattering brushstrokes.
Of course, I know that there’s an ugly side to the element of privilege that exists within the student body. I would be the first to admit that I didn’t like the new Tailgate tradition, or how elements of the lacrosse case reflected on the University. Duke isn’t perfect – but I was extremely lucky to get that acceptance letter back in 1997. And when I walk into Cameron Indoor, that sense of spirit and plain-old FUN is beyond anything I’ve seen within the Dean Dome, because very rarely will you see anything mean behind it.
Sure…Coach K is pretty confident. But did you really expect God to be completely humble?
And sure…Duke students are often upper-class.
But we’re also classy (see what I did there?), even if we do occasionally suggest that you meet your end amidst fire & brimstone. I’d rather have gotten the win on Saturday, but it’s not the end of the world that you enjoyed victory on your home turf. We’ll get you next time.
Forever Duke = #winning.