"Yo Adrian! We did it!"
That's right, Philadelphia, you certainly did.
There is a long-standing perception in sports of the Philadelphia fans as nasty, vitriolic enemies of all that is good and decent.
How much of that is true is open to debate, but not according to a recent poll by GQ magazine.
GQ voted the Philadelphia sports community, specifically fans of the Phillies and Eagles, the worst fans in America. The Phillies landed in the No. 1 spot, while Eagles fans were No. 2.
Fans of the red and green landed at the top of Adam Winer's "well-researched list" of "the bleacher creatures, bottle-throwers, couch-torchers, sexual harassers, projectile vomiters and serially indifferent bandwagon-hoppers marring our national landscape."
Here is a small piece of the article:
"Over the years, Philadelphia fans have booed Santa Claus, their own star players and, most absurdly, the recipient of America's very first hand transplant, whose crime was dribbling in a ceremonial first pitch—thrown with his freshly transplanted hand. Boooo! Admittedly, there are some things fans have cheered. Like Michael Irvin's career-ending neck injury and a fan being tased on the outfield grass. Things reached their nadir last season, when Citizens Bank Park played host to arguably the most heinous incident in the history of sports: A drunken fan intentionally vomited on an 11-year-old girl."
It's all true, of course. All of those events happened and certainly don't shine a favorable light on the City of Brotherly Love.
It's not all bad, though. There are some things about Philly to love, and I say that knowing full well that I live in supposed "enemy territory" in New York City.
You'll never find a better cheesesteak than in Philly (I'm a Geno's guy), "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" is perhaps one of the funniest shows on television, and I have to admit, I've seen more Mets games at Citizen's Bank Park than Shea Stadium or Citi Field, simply because it was much closer when I lived in New Jersey.
So, it's not all bad, Philadelphia. I'll give you your due credit.
However, I can't defend or explain some of the behavior we've seen out of your fans. The article in GQ does get pretty harsh as well:
"The truth is this: All told, Philadelphia stadiums house the most monstrous collection of humanity outside of the federal penal system. 'Some of these people would boo the crack in the Liberty Bell,' baseball legend Pete Rose once said. More likely, these savages would have thrown the battery that cracked it."
Pretty harsh, though I think Pete Rose should have kept that little nugget to himself, as there's plenty to be said against him.
But can the actions of individual fans, such as the so-called "Pukemon," be used to lay a sweeping label across the entire fanbase?
GQ certainly thinks so and the poll doesn't lie. Results are results.
But the Philadelphia fanbase is also very passionate, selling out Phillies and Eagles games on a regular basis.
Now, how much of the Phillies' attendance is based on recent success is unknown to me, but I'm sure it certainly plays a role.
Regardless, what do you think? Are Philadelphia fans the worst in sports, or does that title belong to someone else?
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