A Moment On Why Fans Are Fans

Whether it’s holding the daily fish wrap in my hands or punching it up on the computer, I seek out anything that’s well written on any subject.

I stumbled across just such a piece the other day in the Boston Globe. Written by psychiatrist and Harvard professor Dr. Steve Schlozman, it’s an attempt to try to explain why fans are fans. Titled “Why we suffer through sports” it’s really a tribute to his uncle Frank, who was a die-hard fan of the Chiefs. The author frequented Arrowhead Stadium’s on game day and sat with his uncle.

Wrote Dr. Schlozman:

So, one time, sitting there next to Uncle Frank, his body skinnier than even a month before, his eyes sunken, his cough a whole body experience, his coffee unopened, and the temperature no greater than freezing, I asked him why he came.

“If they’re this bad, why watch?” I asked. It seemed a fair question, and though I was only 11 or 12 at the time, I thought I ought to make some effort to get a sick man out of the cold.

He didn’t look at me, but he smiled, the skin pulled tightly against his rapidly aging face.

“Because it’s great,” he said. “Hell, they’re out there for us, Steve. I mean, don’t you think it’s great?”

Take a couple minutes and enjoy the whole piece. Here’s the link.

4 Responses to “A Moment On Why Fans Are Fans”

  • June 19, 2010  - jimbo says:

    I liked the story, but I’m not sure if I got the point of it all. In the story, Uncle Frank was an obvious fan of the Chiefs, probably since the old days… like myself. I’ve braved a few days at Arrowhead when nephews like the Author were wondering what the hell was my point in being there.
    Whether a person is a Chiefs fan, Pittsburgh fan or the hated Raiders fan, it all stems from our youth & how the game captured our spirit & gave us a reason to cheer, feel sorrow or to have any emotional connection to anything that was’nt family or close friend related. My Dad was the reason I became a Chiefs fan. One of the few subjects or activities we enjoyed together when I was a kid.
    The Chiefs have been a Rollercoaster of Cheers & Jeers for as long as I can remember. And you know Bob, I would’nt have had it any other way.
    Go Chiefs.

  • June 19, 2010  - Danny W says:

    Good find what a gem. One I will never forget is my father and I went to Arrowhead in December we were playing the Chargers. We sat in the nose bleeds and most of the stadium was empty. He wouldn’t allow us to go down further or closer to the game out of integrity or something crazy like that. We had to first bust the ice of the seats then sit down. We as a team got completely destroyed that day but we stayed for the whole thing. I will never forget how greatful he was to get to go anyway. I wont ever forget the game and I’ve been to a bunch something about those hard times seem to stick with you it seems.

  • June 20, 2010  - Don in Wichita says:

    I have a 4 year old Nephew who I’m always teasing he better get me good tickets when he plays for the Chiefs. I look forward to being able to take him up to a game. Hopefully we will win but if not the joy of just being there will spark a passion for the joy of the game!

  • June 20, 2010  - Kel says:

    This article was beautiful…soo beautiful. Thanks for the link.

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