I'm happy for fans of the San Diego Chargers. But I can’t wait for the party to be over, be it with a Super Bowl parade or a dream crushing defeat in Denver on Sunday.
Judging by the region’s reaction to the football team’s victory last Sunday in Cincinnati you’d have thought the Chargers won a championship. Supporters took to the streets of National City, cars with flapping Chargers flags honked and beeped at pedestrians wearing replica jerseys and local TV news led their teasers and newscasts with breaking news that the Chargers won. A playoff game.
I shouldn’t be surprised. We live in a culture in which we give ribbons to kids who blink without falling and every step backward or forward is a success and an achievement.
Granted, the Chargers weren’t expected to make it as far as they have into this year’s postseason. It’s been about five years since they have made it to the playoffs with far greater talent, so maybe it’s unreasonable to hope that fans act — as former coaching legend Vince Lombardi might counsel — “as if you have been there before.” Sorry, coach, it’s been so long we forget where it was and what it looks like.
But frankly, I’m already tired of all the hoopla and horn blowing. If the Chargers win this weekend how many more weeks will we have to stomach stories about glamorous Todd Gloria — the interim mayor of San Diego with the megawatt smile — making sillly bets with mayors from other cities over whose team will win (this week it’s a California burrito, carne asada fries and fish tacos versus Denver’s best green chili)?
How many more weeks of stories and pictures and retweets about quarterback Phillip Rivers’ bolo ties will we have to endure? You know what a bolo tie is? It’s a fancy piece of twine a hayseed loops around his neck when he wants to look fancy but isn’t coordinated enough to outsmart a tie.
How many more weeks will we have to hear people say “bolt up”? What does that mean? Man up? Lawyer up? Wear lightening bolt hats made of foam? All this Chargers exuberance, it’s all so exhausting.
It’s as if you lived next door to a family which is celebrating a quinceañera. You don’t begrudge them their happiness or wish them ill will and you might even be tempted to stop over and offer best wishes.
But if the party carried on into the late night and early morning you might grow a little concerned. And if mom and dad and the kids kept celebrating the next day and the day after that and the day after that for weeks on end you might wonder when exactly that party was going to stop. You might even secretly wish that young girl would move away. But not me.
Go Chargers! No, really. Go.