I was born in a geographical abyss. Creighton, Nebraska is that infrequently talked about town with no stop lights, no big chain stores, and essentially, nothing to do. As my adolescent residence, it single handedly formed my passion for the San Francisco 49ers.
I was born a child of the early 80’s. I was surrounded by Bears, Vikings, Chiefs, and Broncos territory. Luckily, I grew up during the decade of 49ers dominance which meant the Niners were on TV often. To me, they were this mythical team in a far away land that played football with a perfect mixture of precision and power. It was commonplace for me to make top 10 lists of my favorite players. Sure, I had your obvious favorites like Rice, Montana, and Lott. But my boredom lead to names like Mike Walters, Keith Delong, MIchael Carter, and Bubba Paris making my lists.
My proximity, or lack thereof, to my team lead to Sports Illustrated and Sporting News subscriptions as soon as I was able to read. At that time, it was the only way to fuel my desire for 49ers information. Naturally, my bed sheets, wall clocks, and pajamas all sported the San Francisco logo. My personal claim to fame is that my hometown is the birthplace of former 49ers offensive lineman Tony Wragge (2006-2010). In fact, his mother was my kindergarten teacher. The 49ers consumed me at a very young age, and I loved to talk matchups and statistics with grownups any chance I could get. Putting it nicely, I suppose you could have called me an oddity.
But, here is to us odd ones! Here is to those that have carried and maintained our passions from a young age, whatever age that may have been. Here is to us San Francisco 49er fans that lived and survived the lows. For me, the years from 1999-2010 (excluding 01-02) were especially painful. Here is to our elder 49ers fans. Those fans that were lucky enough to see the Million Dollar Backfield, John Brodie, Leo Nomellini, or Bob St. Clair, I pay homage to you. Here’s to the die hard locals and every 49er Faithful worldwide. This is our time of year. This is better than the holiday season and any New Year’s resolutions, because it’s full of championship possibility. We have that possibility of grasping our 6th Lombardi trophy. We have the opportunity of boasting towards Packers fans, Seahawks fans, etc.
The real season has begun. It’s time to wear your lucky shirts, say your prayers of good fortune, and yes Bud Light dude, sit in your superstitious spots. It’s time to dress the kids in our team’s colors and avoid twitter bickering if at all possible! It’s time to yell, scream and cheer our lungs out!
So, allow me if you will to end in a current, awesome 49ers cliche’ that has been a tad overdone and repeated to no end….WHO’S GOT IT BETTER THAN US?