Although the first article of my four-part series was deleted due to a butt-hurt government official, I felt it necessary to continue onward. That being said here is part two of the Examination of the American Football Fan: typology of the generic fans.
The most common species of American football fans, they can be found within any habitat or climate around the country.
Generally, this boozehound doesn’t have the money or time to afford sitting around in line for an $8 beer, so he’s taken the liberty to sneak in a flask of Popov Vodka, or throw back 11 consecutive Jack & Cokes while tailgating.
For him, the ability to cheer and prove his level of fanhood is directly proportional to the amount of alcohol he consumes.
While at first glance, “drunk guy” may appear to be docile and friendly, one must always approach with caution, for looks can be deceiving. In reality, he’s a ticking time bomb; a deadly cocktail of booze and failed dreams, waiting on the very moment someone tells him to “shut-up”, “sit-down”, or ”stop throwing up on my shoes” to explode into an inebriated verbal or physical rampage.
As the game kicks into full swing, so to does his drunken debauchery. From that point on, nothing but AC/DC pumped through stadium speakers, an old-fashioned ass kicking, or security can deter him from his insanely inebriated actions toward those around him.
In the least coherent way possible, he’ll scream, chant, whistle, and yell in a drunken effort to make his opinion heard by all those around him. At that point, if you want to watch the game in a civilized fashion, you’ll have to move sections or hope he gets lost on the way back from his piss break.
Eventually, you or another fan will take it on themselves to get rid of “the drunk guy” through a verbal lashing.
At first sign of such aggression, he’ll result to his most basic responses such as: “this is a free country”, “I know my rights”, or “this is America” as if those terms validate his inebriated actions and will deter anyone from calling stadium security.
Generally, being a decent human being, you’ll turn the other cheek and hope that you’ve seen the worst of it. Sadly, you haven’t. “Drunk guy” is a very territorial animal and you’ve made your presence felt.
He’ll surely continue his asinine and shit-canned behavior until you’re at your wits end, culminating with another ill-fated attempt at stopping him in hopes he’ll finally get the message.
Unfortunately, however, the alcohol has made him impervious to rationality, and each attempt by you or anyone else make to stop him only adds to his aggression.
After successive attempts to pacify him, he’ll probably react with such intellectual responses as: “I could kick your ass”, or “meet me in the parking lot”.
If he hasn’t passed out before the fourth quarter, you can be sure he’ll bitch to everyone about the fact that they don’t sell beer anymore, proclaiming, “I’m not even drunk yet!”
At which point he’ll retire in a drunken stupor to a nearby bar, hopefully smashing his truck head-on into a guardrail in the process.
Yeah, he still loves the team, but not really. More so, he loves the team of old.
The “old-timer” is generally bitter that his glory days have passed, his Viagra no longer keeps his dick hard, and he has to go to the bathroom every 10 minutes.
Rather than enjoy the game from the comfort of his home and within the reaches of his oxygen tank, he chooses to drag his corpse to the stadium and banter on about the old-days.
Generally hopped up on prescription pills, this fossil will pass in and out of consciousness with just enough energy to slur a few mildly-coherent sentences together, bashing the modern game.
As for attire, he’s most likely wearing a tarnished t-shirt, bearing conference Champs pre-1980s; generally the same year your team lost the Super Bowl. The shirt itself has since become a collector’s item since the rest were shipped to villagers in Nicaragua.
He’ll reminisce about the days of yesteryear when athletes were moral, there wasn’t so much money, and black people were barred from competing.
If any mistake is made on the part of your current team, he’ll immediately erupt into a rant about the loss of fundamentals, high-paid athletes, and selfishness. If he’s around when a favorite athlete of yours makes a phenomenal play, by the time you’re done cheering he’ll murmur to you that “player X might be good, but he sure as hell is no player Y (that being the guy he saw in his youth).”
This decrepit old man will constantly boast that he was present during the glory years of your franchise; highlights of which you saw on sports classic a week ago.
Making sure to point out it will never be the same.
The best thing to do when confronted with this petrified relic of the past is to not actively respond, but rather simply smile and nod. Not only will this make sure you don’t become engaged in meaningless, heated discourse about the generation gap, but chances are he can’t hear you anyway.
Here’s a group of people that should be immediately penciled in for castration, as to not let such tainted genes permeate through our society.
Suffering from a bad case of identity crisis, Mr. Facepaint lives and dies through the achievements of his team. Generally, the most rabid fans of this bunch, football has gone far beyond a passion and into a way of life.
Their very fandom is a representation of who they are as a person.
Mr. Facepaint is a guru in the art of football fanaticism and strongly believes that to be a true fan, you must shed all sense of dignity. To him, his face is merely the canvas from which he displays his mastery of being an NFL fan.
Unrelenting in his rabid enthusiasm, he’s got tons of reserve energy supply to last him well into overtime if need be. Likely stored up from sitting on the couch all week and earning his living on eBay.
While they are great for the overall atmosphere and playoff games, you won’t be able to have season tickets next to one of these guys.
Although he spends most of the game-cheering non-stop, he’ll find enough time to explain to you why and how he’s a better fan, due to his attire and the fact that he has never missed a game. Failing miserably to raise or provide for a family in doing so.
Give him credit though, his job isn’t easy, and it takes the utmost dedication and loss of dignity and rational to achieve such status.
Before every game, this blowhard wakes up at 6:00 AM to paint his face and ready himself in his personally-made attire. Fledged in buttons, some sort of unrelated headgear, face paint, and matching shoes, this machismo is ready for battle.
Since he generally lacks any artistic ability, the paint is usually off-shades of your team colors, strewn haphazardly across his face, somewhat resembling a logo. However by the games end he’ll look like the Ultimate Warrior at the end of a match; boasting the remnants of what used to be a discernible costume.
More times than not, he has some arbitrary piece of rallying equipment that he swears brings good fortune to your team ever since that glorious comeback years ago. Regardless if he has brought it to every game since while your team has consecutively failed to make the playoffs for years.
Every Sunday, during the season, he’s there not only to cheer for his team, but to prove to everyone around him that he is the “best fan”. He looks down upon those that don’t show the same enthusiasm, balking at their lack of team pride and patriotism.
Mr. Facepaint always use’s the word “we” when talking about the team, as if he is an integral part to their success or lack there of. Moreover, he has dedicated years of his life to coming up with catchy nicknames for every player in order to appear as if they have an amicable relationship.
His love of the team goes far beyond reasonable player admiration, knowing everything down to what STD’s your players have contracted within the last year.
Perhaps you’re lucky enough to sit by a more mild man of his category.
Rather than personally made garb, he shows his appreciation for the team by purchasing an officially licensed, hand stitched jersey for $300+. Many times he’ll go as far to put his own last name on the back, so he can tell himself he is a part of the team.
If you’re incredibly blessed, you might even get the type that dresses up in full NFL gear. As if he was hoping and praying for the one time your team is short on men and calls him into service.
For the reasons I’ve just explained, you generally see this guy alone. If someone has in fact joined him, it’s almost always by his son.
A carbon copy of him, who has been carefully trained and breed for the inevitable day when he must usurp his fathers place as Mr. Facepaint.
*Disclaimer: Unless you’re under the age of 15, completely shit-housed, or lost a bet with a friend, don’t paint your face. It’s overused and has long since crossed into the realm of cliché; you’re not impressing anyone.*
Just a few minor misfortunes away from suicide or capital murder, he has nothing good to say about the team or anyone around him.
To “The Hater” you and your team have become his verbal punching bag. Serving as a therapeutic release for all his pent up hatred at the world.
Once the game commences, he’ll immediately engage in a pre-planned bitchfest about the team, the owner, ticket prices, parking, and ultimately culminating in minority bashing.
His aura of negativity is so strong he’ll manage to bring people around him down to his sad level.
"The Hater" loves nothing more than an irrevocable in-game injury. At which point he’ll make sure to call that misfortunate player who has been gruesomely injured a “pussy” for not picking up his recently mangled ankle or leg and crawling off the field himself.
The best thing to do with “the hater” is to show him no attention at all.
That way, he doesn’t get what he came for, gaining nothing from you or those around you. From there on out, you can be sure he will finish his night as usual; alone at home, drowning his sorrows and feelings of emptiness into a bottle of alcohol and anti-depressants.
Besides, there’s no sense in wasting your energy to verbally or physically attack “The Hater”, since he’s already dead inside.
To Be Continued...
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