From One Volunteer To Another

Shifting a few things around in my garage…I took a break by stretching and walking to the end of the driveway. This older gentleman walking his doggy shouted something at me. What? We were literally the only 2 people around so I’m pretty sure he was talking to me.

Stranger Danger caution wrapped around my words I asked: “What did you say?”
“Go Vols!!” What the H E double hockey sticks is a “Vol.” He then added: “They’re so good!”

Oh. The light bulb above my head clicked on: my t-shirt. When I travel I pick up t-shirts and they’re usually sports related and typically Nike made. I was wearing a University of Tennessee Athletics Nike t-shirt.

“Oh.Yeah.” I smiled. “Go Vols!!” I’m hoping that’s the end of the conversation. I don’t actually know anything about Tennessee football: I was there but not for football.

This t-shirt is a souvenir not a declaration of my sports allegiance. If it says anything about my identity it’s that I enjoy travelling though I understand that’s not how t-shirt semiotics works.

Dude was clearly excited: “I didn’t know anybody else on the street like the Vols! I thought I was the only one.” His dog muttered something I didn’t catch, probably an insightful DVD commentary on his owner. “We’re in Toronto: not gonna be a lot of Vols fans right?”

I nodded. “We are a rare breed.” I paused. “A rare and passionate breed.” Pretty proud of myself for coming up with that on such short notice.
Smiling: “Oh: Yes.” His dog tugged on the leash mercifully pulling him away like “a good boy.” “Maybe next time I can see you we can talk football.”
“Sure.” He walked away before I finished the word with an impatient doggy.

That should buy me enough time to google and find out the quarterback’s name.

So because on a trip I took I dunno how many years ago I ended up with this t-shirt which I randomly put on today during a quarantine to combat a global pandemic I found out a neighbour who happened to be walking his dog at that exact moment I was outside is a Vols fan.

I love it when a plan comes together.


Listen to My Summer Lair @ W • T • F

Also published on Medium.

Comments are closed.

Posts, blog and musings.
Events, gigs and appearances.


"Red Letter Nights"
by Sammy Younan is available!


Click here for to enjoy a yummy sample...