The big game is this Sunday and of course we’re going to watch it. Go
Bears! But it feels sort of pretentious to me. We are Bears fans, but we
rarely sit down and watch the games. The last time I tried it was the
Sunday we played the Patriots, and just look at how that turned out.
Being hard core Chicago baseball fans (the Cubs) I’m already more than a little annoyed with us and our rather fair-weather Bears fandom. I mean, I know how annoyed I get at fair-weather Cub fans. You know the ones. They go to the game, drink beer and talk the whole time like they’re at any old park as opposed to a baseball park, Wrigley Field, no less. They don’t feel the pain of an injured Zambrano or a Fontenot trade or an error in the top of the ninth, so why do they get to feel the excitement and joy at the winning double play or home run? My guess is they don’t feel it the same way. Not really. Not like us hard core fans, anyway. They’re just pretending they do. Posers.
And I can’t even truly call myself a fair-weather Bears fan. At least not in the same way I’m totally a fair-weather Blackhawks fan. I watched two periods of hockey last year (at least I didn’t say quarters), but still wanted to run out and buy a jersey (I know, you call it a sweater) after the Stanley cup. I grew up in a Bears house. I joke that the SNL skit, Superfans, is my family right down to the heart attacks and kielbasa. It was an annual ritual on our way to my mom’s house for Christmas Eve to wager on “minutes to Ditka” and “minutes to the ’85 team.” And if you guessed more than thirty, you would lose.
Early in my airline career, I even got to fly a Bears team charter to Minneapolis. For Christmas that year my parents received a framed poster signed by the team, which still had a lot of the ’85 players on it–Kevin Butler, Jim Harbaugh, Keith Van Horne, William Perry, to name a few. I was beside myself excited, especially when the Captain of the flight wanted to set me up with Jim Harbaugh, which would have been fantastic had I not thought my husband would mind. These days that poster is the only thing saving me from bastard child status when my folks realize I can’t even comment intelligently on the team’s offensive line.
But this week we’re not eating cheese at our house and we’re wearing our Bears hats and jerseys and come Sunday at two we’ll park our poser butts down in front of the TV for the big game. We’ll feel excitement and joy at a winning touchdown pass or interception and all the hard core fans out there can take solace in knowing it won’t be the same level of excitement and joy they’re feeling. But at least I’ll have the good sense to not ask what inning it is.