So Friday Night, I was hanging out with a bunch of friends, two of whom were Bengals fans. I had on my Steelers '05 AFC Champions hoodie, much to the chagrin of said friends. One of those friends is dating a Pittsburgh girl who bleeds Black and Gold, and she was telling me how she had to get a fifth of vodka in him last week during the Ravens game in order to get him to cheer at all for the Steelers.
After our time of imbibing had come to an end, I decided to head uptown for some late night chow. As I was standing in line, waiting for my gyros, some Browns fans behind me decided they would heckle me. "Kurt Warner's gonna pick you apart!" was one of the preferred chants. "Who's gonna hang with Larry Fitzgerald? Nobody!" was another. You have to realize, this was 3 A.M. or thereabouts, so engaging in an intelligent, thoughtful, BTSC-esque conversation was out of the question. So I fought back with general retorts. Things like, "Kurt Warner should be afraid of James Harrison," and "Troy Polamalu and Ike Taylor can cover Fitzgerald." On my way out of the restaurant, one of the Browns fans goes, "You know why we hate the Steelers so bad? Because we want to beat the (snot) out of every single of their fans!" Not feeling like sinking to that level, I just told him, "Anytime," and left.
So that brings me to my point of this fanpost. It seems to me fans of certain other teams either have to root for: a. other teams to win because their team can't, or b. other teams to lose in order to get a sense of satisfaction. I split my time between Athens, OH (my college) and Youngstown, OH (my home), so I have to put up with members of both Browns Nation and... whatever you call the 10 or so fans the Bengals have. And anytime I'm either place, I do not get any sort of intelligent argument from either of them. What that guy said to me Friday Night is indicative of what I have to put up with all the time from fans of those teams.
Folks, that we have chosen to be a part of the tradition of this team means we automatically have the ability to argue football, and not ad hominem, personal attacks, like fans of so many other teams have to resort to when discussing football with us. Everytime a fan of another team who can't actually talk FOOTBALL (and there are some who can) opens his or her mouth to me, I am a little more proud to be a Pittsburgh Steeler fan. Regardless of what happens Sunday, I will still feel that way.