I'm going to try and do something different right now. I'm going to be 100 percent honest about my Dallas Cowboys fandom.
For as long as I can remember, I've been a Dallas Cowboys fan.
Growing up in New Jersey, you're expected to choose between the Jets or the Giants. Choosing any divisional rivals guarantees dirty looks from middle school to high school. The only exception is South Jersey where the Eagles are king, but who counts South Jersey anyways?
It was made even worse after hopping on the Cowboys' bandwagon at seven years old when they were playing the Bills in the Superbowl.
For close to a decade, I had to hear that I was a front runner, and that I only liked them because they were winning. If I'm going to be completely honest, they may have been right. I'm a much better winner than loser.
I lived through the Golden Age where Aikman, Smith and Irvin were household names. I remember Jimmy Johnson before he was doing advertisements for ED pills. It was the golden years, and it happened way before I actually cared about football.
Those years may have spoiled me some.
I grew up during the amazing times with Jimmy Johnson and the decent times with Barry Switzer. Those teams that made me proud to be a fan of "America's Team." Those teams allowed me to go to school and know that I had a better Sunday than any of my friends.
But I also lived through the Quincy Carter experiment, which failed, the Vinny Testaverde experiment, which also failed, and the Drew Bledsoe experiment, which failed, too.
However, I endured through all of those failures as I believed in Tony Romo. Believed is the key term. Where others took him to task for botching a snap or just being an overall unreliable quarterback, I saw him as one of the best in the league.
Monday night's game against the Bears changed all of that.
For the first time that I can remember, I am truly ashamed to be a Cowboys fan. I am ashamed of being loyal to a team that doesn't care enough about their fans to put forth a real effort. I am ashamed of myself for believing in Tony Romo.
Tony Romo, the guy who threw five picks. Tony Romo, the guy who threw for the same amount of Bears touchdowns as Chicago's own QB. Tony Romo, the guy who gave up on his team when they needed a leader.
The blame obviously doesn't rest solely on the shoulders of Romo. Dez Bryant is just as accountable and guilty. Between missed routes and dropped balls, he had an enormous impact on the outcome of that game.
Maybe I'm a bit salty, but like many wounds, this one is fresh. I have to deal with friends reminding me of the embarrassing loss. And there's nothing that I can say in response because they're right.
I'm not sure where I go from here. Should I continue being a fan of a garbage team with all the history but none of the modern day victories, or should I abandon all hope and jump ship?
Ultimately, like Chicago Cubs fans, I'll endure. I'll continue to watch Dallas in hopes of capturing the magic of my childhood. I'll continue to hope that Tony Romo turns it all around and becomes the second coming of Roger Staubach.
It's gotta happen, right?
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