Reputation is only a... candle, of wavering and uncertain flame, and easily blown out, but it is the light by which the world looks for and finds merit.
- James Lowell, American Poet, Critic and Editor (1819-1891)
You can hate a team for one single football game and what they did to your team, so it is for this Raiders fan and the Patriots over that blown call on a Tom Brady fumble in the Tuck Rule Game in 2002, so it is with the Ravens for beating my Raiders 16-3 in the AFC Championship the year before. Heck, I hate the Steelers for the Immaculate Reception in a game that happened before I was even watching football. The clip alone has been played so many times it’s as if I experienced that miserable miracle first hand.
As a lifelong Raider fan, other than two years I lived up in No. Cal., I’ve been a So. Cal. Raiders fan my whole life, so I don’t hold that same strong Bay Area Raiders / Niners rivalry that was bad enough to end in a stabbing death in a in the parking lot of a preseason game this year (it’s sports you idiots, it’s not something to kill anyone over, leave that to greasy-haired soccer fans in Europe) so in the week leading up to the Super Bowl, I was just about to root for the Niners, but then Randy Moss called himself the greatest wide receiver ever to play the game, which to deny that of Jerry Rice is just asinine, it’s like saying water isn’t wet, and then there was the homophobic diatribe from Chris Culliver and suddenly I couldn’t tell which team I liked less.
Ray Lewis? There are a lot of people who think the man got away with murder – literally – but the truth is, there are probably only three people alive who know what happened in that stabbing death after the Super Bowl in 2000 and I’m not one of them. All I know is, whatever kind of bad people he may have been associating with back then, for all we can tell, the man has been nothing but a model citizen the last thirteen years, so don’t count me in with the Ray Lewis haters.
But you have to pick one team to root for (or against) and I can still feel the sting of that AFC Championship game from 2001, so call it the lesser of two evils, but I’ll pull for the Niners today for that reason and because that Colin Kaepernick is a heck of a player and a lot of fun to watch.
Enjoy the game all – even you, Grumpy Cat!