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here's to good friends - and cheesheads

here's to good friends - and cheesheads

GB (2k image)Today, 12:30 EST. Packers v. 49ers. Please keep in mind that the Packers have never lost a playoff game at Lambeau Field.

I am so ready for this game. I have my jersey and my hat and cheeshead all laid out, waiting for game time. I bet Pat will be actually wearing his.

Today, in honor of the Packers and some wonderful memories, and because that part of my archives does not have permalinks, I am repeating an entry.

September 9, 2001: Why I am a Packers fan:

The question of the week in my mailbox is this: Why am I a Packers fan when I live

in New York? People seem to be very interested in the more mundane aspects of my

life, and that suits me just fine. So, for the inquisitive; the poignant, touching history

of why I love the Green Bay Packers:

I have always been a football fan. My father was a Jets fan since the beginning, and

we grew up watching them. Joe Namath was an early hero of mine, and when my father

met him and got his autograph, we lived in this heady state of euphoria for days. We

loved football. We loved the Jets.

Eventually the Jets ripped my heart out and moved to New Jersey. I was pissed. I was

hurt. I felt as if a long time lover had abandoned me for a sexier, prettier girl. I, in turn,

abandoned the Jets. No longer was I one of their biggest fans. I couldn't look them in they

eye. I couldn't stand the pain.

I lost interest in football for the most part, and didn't come back to it until I joined a

football pool at the local deli a few years later. I came back to the game full force,

back to spending my Sundays in front of the tv, cursing and muttering and cheering.

I had no team, though. I was like a man without a country. I had no banner to wave,

no colors to wear, no allegiance to pledge. This went on for a few years, with me just

rooting for the point spread and some extra cash.

Enter Xavier. I met Xavier several years ago, when I was in the waning stages of my

marraige and about to end it. Xavier became a great friend, my one man group therapy

and confidant. He was spiritual without being religious, generous to a fault and dying

of cancer. He was in the last stages of a hard fought battle, and he gave up on

hospitals and chemo and doctors in general. He just wanted to fade away peacefully.

We spent a lot of time together that fall, examining life and talking football. Xavier

was a Packers fan through and through. He was from Green Bay. His blood was green

and gold. His mood was determined by the accuracy of Bret Favre's arm on any given

Sunday.

Towards the end of November that year, Xavier told me he wouldn't make it to Christmas.

He was ready to let go of whatever rope he was clinging to. He had enough. He wrote

me a letter shortly after Thanksgiving, after he lost the use of his voice, and asked me

to honor a few favors he had of me. He asked me to take care of myself, to be good to

myself. He asked me not to settle for just anyone just because I didn't want to be alone.

He asked me to always remember him. And he asked me to pledge to him that I would

always and forever remain a Packers fan, so I could root for them in his place. I readily

agreed to all. I told him I would try to keep most of the promises, and the last one was

certainly the easiest.

Xavier died the first week in December. The Packers made it to the Super Bowl and lost

to Denver. Of course, I have never forgotten him. I have been mostly good to myself and

no, I didn't settle. And I am still, and always will be, a Packers fan.

So here's to the Packers, Xavier and keeping promises to friends.

Comments

Packer SUCK!

hello there from San Francisco. Just wanted to say hello and good day before The Pack gets the whack courtesy of them 49ers...oh wait..I'm an Eagles fan. Yeah! we beat the Bucs.

Hey Bears fan...just one Packer sucks or all of them?

Go Chiefs!!

Oh wait...they didn't make it. Um...then I'm all for the Packers.

My man's from northern Wisconsin, so I got four words for you:

We Back The Pack.

But don't tell my Dad, he thinks I'm still a loyal Bears fan. Shh

Raiders go on, Niners go home. All is right with the world. The fact that your Packers won is just a happy by-product. :)

Go Pack...

I'm a man with no country, by the way. I still don't see how you can string a game that should last two hours tops into a whole afternoon. And whats with all the padding?

packers rule. cheeseheads rule.

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