Will Abney


Professional student and teacher of Writing and Literature in Athens, GA. I love languages and travelling, and my life is best when I get to combine the two! My wanderings tend to be solo, though I frequently meet up with friends that I've met on my previous travels. Some of my favorite things to do while travelling are eating local foods (though I'm sort of a picky eater), spending time in the outdoors, and seeing plays, musicals, or concerts. I like to collect flags from the countries I visit, which I believe makes me a vexillophile. I don't really get any other souvenirs for myself. I send TONS of postcards to my friends and family around the world, so give me your address and I'll send you one on my next trip. Some of my favorite photograph subjects are street signs, mountains, and odd angles of familiar (or even famous) objects. I'm a current MFA student in Creative Nonfiction at Bay Path University, as well as an alumnus of Mercer University (undergrad and seminary), the University of Georgia (master's in French), Texas Christian University (Master of Liberal Arts), Western Michigan University (master's in Science Education), and Ohio University (Master of Social Sciences).

North America » United States » Louisiana » New Orleans January 1st 2020

In the world of college football, bowl games are beauty pageants at the end of the season that both end the year and set up the next one. Unless you’re playing for a national championship, that is. All the other games at the end of December and the beginning of January are understood to show the direction of your program—if you win the bowl game, you’re in good shape and get a little boost going into next year. Lose, and some people may get fired, but questions will certainly be asked about the health of your program. There are also several levels to bowl games; let’s call them tiers. The Playoff is the top tier, since only the four teams involved in it have a shot at winning the title. The next tier comprises the “New ... read more
It will never disappoint you
Make sure to get cheese on your burger here
The Superdome in New Orleans

North America » United States » Florida » Orlando December 28th 2019

This was an odd experience, since the game itself was fantastic, but everything surrounding it was a bit lackluster (and even downright frustrating). First off, let me say that I was excited I would get to attend a second game involving Notre Dame in which none of my loyalties would be questioned. Also, I could attend a game for a reasonable price. When the matchup was announced in early December, I was also thrilled that it would be in a location relatively close to home. I contemplated making it an overnight trip, especially since the kickoff time was set at noon. But with the money situation, the decision to do a day trip to Orlando was much more palatable. Wake up around 5:00, leave before 6:00, and then be back home in time to watch some ... read more
Welcome to Orlando!
The ticket that caused such a headache
My bowl pin, the only swag I purchased

North America » United States » North Carolina » Boone December 7th 2019

Even before the season began, I was expecting to attend the Sun Belt Championship Game at Appalachian State University. That was a bold prediction, considering that the Sun Belt Conference has a moveable championship game: it is hosted by the school with the better record. That’s one of the main reasons I wanted to attend a championship game from the Group of Five: I have been attending games at schools all season, and all of the Power Five conferences have stationary games that take place at NFL stadiums. Only the MAC in the Group of Five does this. And three of the Group of Five conferences are close enough to me that it would be possible to make a trip without too much effort. I wanted it to be App State, because they’re probably the closest ... read more
Pretty sure this bell tower is an iconic landmark around App State
The center of campus for Appalachian State University
Looking back toward the main campus of App State

North America » United States » Georgia » Atlanta » Midtown November 30th 2019

I had several options for rivalry week in college football, and I don't regret going to a place I have been before, to watch a matchup I have seen several times. Though I had my choice of games for this rivalry week, I also had commitments on Sunday back home, so it meant I had to stay within an area that would allow me to be back by noon the following day. My heart was really set on the Iron Bowl, but the price just never got low enough for me to consider it as a serious option. In hindsight, of course, that would have been THE game to choose—it had everything you could hope for in a college football game, and people will be talking about it for years to come. So maybe the price ... read more
Normally I avoid this route but it's the most direct way to Tech
Many building on Tech's campus have an ultra-modern feel
The Administration Building at Tech, and one of the key shots for any sportscast from this school

North America » United States » Texas » Dallas November 24th 2019

I'm going to break with tradition during this football season and write about a place where I didn't attend a game. I’ve written about Art Deco in the past, but this blog is exclusively about that architectural style. On a recent episode of The Man in the High Castle, one of the characters states the following nugget: “Architecture isn’t just about buildings.” This is probably one of the most important things to understand about architecture. It makes statements. It inspires. Art Deco, short for the French phrase arts decoratifs, was a movement in art and architecture from the 1920s through the 1940s. It was meant to be a break from what had gone on before. It was about efficiency, but also grandeur. It was about domination, but simplicity. The artists of the 1920s wanted modernity, and ... read more
Fair Park with the Ferris wheel in the background
The front of Cotton Bowl Stadium
Iron gates at Cotton Bowl Stadium

North America » United States » Oklahoma » Norman November 23rd 2019

Oklahoma! Oklahoma is one of the most successful programs in all of college football history. It’s one of those places that every fan of the game should put on their list to visit. I bought the ticket for this game before the season even began. Last year was my first year not going to a TCU football game since I applied to that school back in 2014, and I felt a little bad about that. So when the decision was made to visit as many big-name places as I could this season, I looked for a date and location where going to a TCU game could satisfy that quest. At Oklahoma, the weekend before Thanksgiving, seemed like the best option. No need to hurry back on what would definitely be the longest road trip of the ... read more
The campus phallus, just outside the library
Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium
My TCU tailgaters had strung these cans on the outside of their tent

North America » United States » South Carolina » Clemson November 16th 2019

It was my second time this season wearing purple and cheering for the Tigers in Death Valley. Except that it wasn't the same Tigers or the same Death Valley. Say what? Exactly. That's the weird world of college football. Many of my fellow UGA people will be appalled that I visited Clemson, wore Clemson colors, and had a good time. But I did, so they can get over it. For better or for worse, I didn’t realize until I was already in my car and leaving town that I hadn’t bothered to put out the word that I was heading to Clemson for the game. I had done that for other games that were nearby, especially when there were people I knew who might attend the game, too. It had really slipped my mind. Also, this ... read more
It says "Clemson University"
View of the pond and Clemson library
Main building at Clemson

North America » United States » Virginia » Blacksburg November 9th 2019

I learned an important lesson this weekend about (not) cheering for a team that you don't have a real connection with. This is one of the shortest trips I’ve made all season, in terms of distance as well as time. But I got in a little sightseeing on Friday, on my way up to Virginia. I was also tasked with delivering some brownies (no secret ingredients) to a certain PhD student at Virginia Tech. So it wasn’t just the football game I was interested in. I left on Friday morning, which also happened to be my dad’s 70th birthday. So happy birthday, dad. I did text in the morning as I was leaving, and I called to chat when I got back to my hotel room for the evening, so consider me a dutiful son. The ... read more
PDQ, yummy
the main quad at Wake Forest
Big L all around for Liberty

North America » United States » Indiana » South Bend November 2nd 2019

Since I’m doing more on this trip than just college football, I’m dividing it into two parts. The first will be all about the football gameday experience (and getting there). The second part will talk about all the stuff I did on my way back home, since I had a couple of days to be a tourist before I had to be back home. So let me say that Notre Dame has been a favorite of mine for as long as I’ve been following college football. I know people say they’re always overrated, and in the past few years in the world of UGA fanhood, it’s become the norm to trash-talk Notre Dame. We did beat them both times in the past three years, so the trash-talk is warranted, on some level. But when it comes ... read more
every college needs to do this
View down to the Main Building, aka the Golden Dome
Golden Dome + Vatican flag

North America » United States » Louisiana » Baton Rouge October 26th 2019

It was a Tiger-off in the Bayou on Saturday, my first top-10 matchup of the season. After I bought my ticket for the LSU-Auburn game last week while at Alabama, I had a little bit of buyer’s remorse. Had I made the right choice? For one, Baton Rouge is a little bit further away from my house than I had expected. Second, I had been an Auburn fan at one point, having attended several games at Auburn before I ever attended my first as a UGA student. And lastly, I only knew one person in Baton Rouge, but she said she would actually be out of town for the weekend. Nevertheless, I have wanted to attend a game here for a long time. I would’ve come to LSU last year when UGA played, but tickets were ... read more
Definitely felt like the bayou early in the morning
Memorial Tower, icon of LSU
Gateway to LSU

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