It has come to my attention that being a sports fan in Philly kind of sucks. Let me rephrase that, being a fan of Philly teams kind of sucks. It’s bad enough that our teams are perpetually shitty. We don’t need Philadelphians who root for other teams rubbing it in our face.
This brings me to my first problem: People who call themselves Philadelphians that root for different teams.
What is wrong with these people?
I don’t understand it other than to say that they are front runners. Of course I know that not every team they root for is a winning team. Some root for teams that are pretty mediocre. Yes, the Cowboys just finished the season as the top seed in the NFC, but they still lost in their first game of the playoffs. Mediocre. They haven’t been relevant since the 90’s. Mediocre. I could go on a separate rant about the Cowboys, but that is for another day. Basically, rooting for almost any other team is a form a front running because it is perceived that just about any other team has a better chance of winning. There may be some truth to that. I won’t deny it. The problem has more to do with why that is the reason you root for a team.
If winning is the reason you root for them, than why even have a team? No team, not even the Patriots or Yankees or Lakers or whatever your sport of choice, win every year. If winning is the only matter of importance then you should just follow the sport as a whole and not vow allegiance to any specific team. There are those who do just that and this article is not about them. There are a few other caveats like if you are from a place that doesn’t have professional teams or if you’re a transplant. I have more respect for those people (though I don’t necessarily agree) than the fake fans. And yes, you are a fake fan if you root for anything other than your home team.
Then there are the people who claim they are fans of a specific athlete and so they go with whatever team they are playing for. Ok, what happens when they’re retired or traded? If you change teams when a new athlete appears that garners your interest, then why say you’re a fan of teams when you’re really a fan of players? If you stay with the same team then you’re no different than the previous group. You’ve chosen your team because they happened to draft the player you liked. Really? That player could have gone anywhere. I’m sure any team would have loved to have them but weren’t capable of acquiring them for various reasons.
I choose the home team because it represents my home, obviously. The thrill of winning only comes when I had followed them during the losing. One of the most entertaining aspects of following sports is that unlike in fiction, the good guys don’t always win. It is the only genuinely unpredictable entertainment medium that I know of.