William VotaContributor IMarch 17, 2009


I have to say right now, at this moment, I love me some hate. 

It let's me know I am alive and breathing. Most importantly it shows I am relevant. You see I haven't always felt this way.

I have been a Patriot fan since the day of the Moonshot '69, living in Rhode Island.  Just a few short years later I was transplanted by my parents to the foreign California coastline. Raider country back then....soon to give way to Niner country. 

Back then no one paid me any mind and barely even knew about my Patriots , except possibly that Jim Plunkett and Mike Haynes played for a while.  But the Patriots were awful in those days. The days before the Flying Elvis and Patriot Pat grimaced on the side of the Patriots white helmets. No one noticed or cared...or hated.  We were the forgotten franchise of the NFL.

Even a surprise run and appearance in the Super Bowl in 1985 didnt change it.  Of course the fact the Bears did a Super Bowl Shuffle all over The Pats didnt help my cause.

You see the bottom line is no one cares about you unless you are so abysmal you stick out or you are great. The Patriots for most of my life have been neither of these.

However, that all changed on one play (and no it isnt the tuck play).  Drew Bledsoe was hit on the sidelines and a lung was punctured. In stepped a sixth-round backup quaterback named Tom Brady and the Patriots place in history changed. 

Now I do want it noted that where I live the Tuck Play is a special place of hate in the hearts of my local Raider nation fans. However, it is hard for me to take them serious when it comes to football as the folks in Raider gear in my city know more about Chivas than the Raiders.

Hate is the 21st century version of envy and respect from many football fans

However the fact remains now that the Patriots are winning titles and contenders each year. I get to enjoy the hate. 

And I get to feel it more than most fans of the Pats as I am right here in the heart of Raiderland where the hate is flourishing as they have nothing to root for. So they hate. On a daily basis I get to hear "Pats SUCK!" And I feel ALIVE.