For the Love of the Game: What a True Fan Is Made Of

michael hellerCorrespondent IAugust 27, 2008

Last night while watching my beloved metropolitans get crushed, losing a seven run lead to their division rival Phillies (They lost 8-7 in 13 innings) a thought dawned on me. How can I still watch this game? It was causing me so much pain and frustration, yet I couldn’t turn away.

What kept me from changing the channel and watching some happy TV show and checking the score in the morning? Then I realized, I couldn’t turn away because I was a true Mets fan, and I couldn’t stop watching no matter how much I wanted to. So then I got to thinking. What defines a true fan?

I realize that there are many ways to express your fan hood, so I’m going to take a look at several ways that people do, as well as several characteristics of a true fan. A true fan is always loyal. He will stick with his team through thick, thin, through bad times, and good times. A true fan is attentive.

He always follows his team's every move as best as he can. A true fan isn’t afraid to tell his team what he feels about their performance (this becomes especially clear if you live in New York.) A true fan will think of ways that his team can improve (and now, in the blogging age, share them with the world.)

A true fan bleeds his team's colors. A true fan not only owns apparel of his team, he cherishes every piece like it's his own little connection to his team, No matter how much they actually have. A true fan knows the game more than he knows himself, His teams’ stadium more than he knows his own house.

A true fan will defend his team against enemy fans, even if he knows the other team is clearly superior to his. And most importantly, a true fan will hold out hope, even in the most hopeless situations, because when the day comes that your team finally hoists that championship trophy in the air, you’ll be ready celebrate right along side them.