The Fan Mentality

October 10, 2007

The Buffalo News this morning has a great article about how people are dealing with Monday night’s Bills loss. While I’ll spare you the “woe is us” details, it brought up one great point about sports and fandom:

Things get blown out of proportion with fans. That’s where the emotional turns into the illogical.”

But in Boston, just like in Buffalo, the fans keep coming back for more. That’s part of what being a fan is all about.

No matter what your gut — or your spouse — tells you, it’s not about masochism. It’s about joy and excitement — because even when you don’t get to experience it, as on Monday night, there’s always the chance that you might. If not tonight, then next time.

The reporter is right in that the emotions caused by a particular team can cause people to take a hard turn into illogical-city.  Look at what’s happening now in this town: people are jumping off of the Sabres bandwagon after the 0-2 start (2% of their season, folks) and accusing players of having compromising photos of management to guarantee power play or penalty kill positions. Sheesh. Let’s accept the fact that the Sabres got outplayed by the Isles and the little bitch Mike Comrie and move on, leaving the wild accusations behind. Hockey’s a long season, lets remember that. These two games are barely speed bumps on the road to Stanley.

Fandom is about enduring all parts of the ride. The bumpy 1-4 starts, the 10 consecutive game winning streaks, the players leaving town for greener pastures. Its about enjoying the good times (great blowout games, playoffs, entire team brawls) but also knowing when to lose graciously. Yeah, you mumble and grumble about it the next day, but there’s no need to dwell on it for extended periods of time. There’s a new game around the corner, a chance for the team to improve on what they did right, another chance to win.  Dwell on that. Don’t be “that guy” that doesn’t know when to let it go.



  1. Brava! This is a fantastic post! I feel like every serious sports fan should print this out and keep a copy of it on them for times of dire need. I mean, it’s so easy to get wrapped up in the “woe is me” crap, and I think we all have moments where it would be so helpful to pull this out of our pockets and be like, “Oh right. Perspective.”

  2. “…accusing players of having compromising photos of management to guarantee power play or penalty kill positions.”

    I really, really hope you’re joking. People aren’t actually saying stupid shit like this are they?

  3. Schnookie, thank you for the compliment. Sometimes we all just need a reality check. After all, sports is supposed to be an enjoyable experience.

    Andrew – yes, they are. People have been ripping on Goose’s play the past two games. His [alleged – and I’m stressing that!] possession of compromising photos of management with farm animals has been bantered about as a reason for his spot on the power play. Its comments like that that make me scared of the people on some of those boards.

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