October 4, 2011

Leaving the Eagles behind?

I watched the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday at a sports bar in Boston. The bar had two giant TVs, one showing Steelers/Texans and the other showing Lions/Cowboys. The Eagles game was off to the left, on a screen one-fourth the size. But rather than ask to switch seats or change channels, I kept getting caught up in the other games, forgetting to look over and check the score. I ended up leaving with 12 minutes left in the fourth quarter to catch a flight back to DC.

Granted, it was one of the worst games of the Andy Reid era, an unmitigated disaster that has even the most level-headed Eagles fans up in arms. But as recently as a few years ago, this would have felt like an act of treason.

Late in high school and throughout college, from August to January I would live and breathe Eagles football. I was at the Vet for the Wild Card game in 2002 when the Eagles took down the Buccaneers 31-9, and I witnessed the backbreaking loss to Carolina in the 2003 NFC Championship Game with mine own two eyes.

Nowadays, though? I'd just as soon sit down with Scott Hanson and his wonderful NFL RedZone channel than suffer through a boring Eagles loss. If that makes me a traitor, well, I apologize for preferring a better form of entertainment.

For example, the Eagles melted down in the fourth quarter of a Week 3 showdown with the Giants and basically handed them a victory. Normally, this would be enough to ruin my day. But instead, my roommate and I switched over to RedZone and watched the underdog Bills battle back to defeat the hated Patriots. Rather than bitch and moan about the Eagles all afternoon, I savored the great ending of this meaningless (to me) game.

If I was watching a random football game and it stunk, I'd change the channel. I'm just now expanding that idea to include my own team.

A few years ago, I saw a guy in an NFL Starter jacket walking down the streets of Boston. No team; just NFL colors and a giant league logo on the back. I instantly texted this information to a few of my friends and we made fun of him for a while; why didn't he just pick a franchise to root for? Did he just cheer for every game to be fun and every player to have a good time? What a weirdo.

But now, I think I understand where he was coming from. For whatever reason, I can't get into the Eagles like I used to. And it's not because I'm frustrated with Andy Reid or the defense or Mike Vick or anything having to this with this particular Eagles squad; I felt this coming on way before Week 1, which was back when this year's team was still full of promise and not leaking gas at a tremendous rate. I'm just low on Eagles passion, and I don't know if it'll ever return. I must begrudgingly admit to becoming more of an NFL fan and less of an Eagles fan. Someone buy me a new jacket.

I still love the Flyers, and especially the Phillies, with all my heart. When they lose a big game, I'm crushed. But when the Eagles lose, I can just flip the channel. I won't sit through Brewers/Diamondbacks or Blue Jackets/Coyotes, but I do get a great deal of pleasure from Packers/Cardinals. And even though it sounds weird to admit, this doesn't bother me anymore. I guess I'll find out down the line whether this is really time to move on.


Peter said...

i don't know, you were into enough to send a prematurely gloating text!

very convenient time to cease defending the home 53, king myno.


Sam said...

Poor King Myno, consistently losing to underdog San Francisco teams must be tough.

gabish said...

whoever this writer is obviously has no understanding of what it is to be a true fan. if the above commentators are correct, and this young man was indeed WATCHING the eagles game actively throughout their dominant first half, sending condescending text messages to his friends on the other side of the aisle, this charlatan piece of so-called journalism wreaks of insincerity. what kind of fan is this? one who abandons his comrades in a time of need?

there was a time when i believed king myno should truly reign all of Center City, from Market to South St, from the penthouse of the Comcast building. But now I see he is merely a migrant sell-out. Next week he'll be rooting for the Patriots.

FishGuy said...

Being a true fan is taking the ups and downs that are inevitable with any franchise. Obviously the assholes that throw snowballs at santa do not quite get that, and are willing to thrown their pride of team and town under the bus.

While you were watching your Eagles collapse and you not care, I had the opposite reaction. For 8 years since the Giants 49ers snap heard round the world Wild Card game there have been almost zero good moments for the 49ers. When we were down 20-3, I was devastated, even worse watching the game with a philly fan. Then moment by moment they came back and I said here we go again and kept reassuring the philly fan they still would win. Even when we took the 24-23 lead i told her the same. As you lost your faith as a fan, my persistence as a fan was rewarded and I got to watch a great comeback. In short persistence of fanhood pays off and you wlil find no sympathy from teams who have had no taste of playoffs or su per bowls.

Steve Cimino said...

Wow, Niners fans came out in waves. This is maybe the most commented-on post I've ever written, so thanks for reading, everyone.

As for me sending gloating texts in the first quarter, I watched bits and pieces of it using the NFL Sunday Ticket app from a Starbucks in Boston. I was also checking the score occasionally on ScoreCenter while wandering the streets, waiting for my friend to finish his golf game. Basically, wasn't even really watching, just noting what was happening.

I'll take any chance I can get to needle the certain someone who received my texts, though. And as for being a good fan, I watch 82 Flyers games and 150 (or more) Phillies games, and usually 16 Eagles games. My point is that the 16 Eagles games are becoming a chore, and have been for a little while now, while you'd have to drag me away from the Phils or the Flyers, especially from the games that count.