I remember waiting for the dreaded phone call from my schoolmate, Tony.
Whenever his favorite pro sports teams beat mine, he’d call my home to rub it in. I’d never answer the phone myself, knowing that it was Tony ready to pounce (it was always playful, but still harsh to an elementary schooler like me). I’d get sick to my stomach when my teams lost. Going to school the day after a loss was hell — Tony would always be there to remind me of the outcome.
When my teams beat his, I would never call his home. I was a silent celebrator. I knew he was mad, and that was good enough for me.
I had that sick feeling again prior to coming into work on Monday.
The Seahawks beat my 49ers on Sunday — and it was a tough pill to swallow, especially after we nearly pulled out a victory in one of the most exciting games I’ve ever watched.
We’re all adults here at the pro-Seahawk Reporter, so nobody ragged on me for losing the big game. One workmate offered condolences as we discussed the top plays, played Monday morning quarterback on some missed referees’ calls and how they changed the flow of the game and other pieces of the NFC championship match that might as well have been the Super Bowl — it was that hyped, and that stellar.
Before I went to bed on Sunday night, I vowed to my wife (a huge Niner fan, as well) that I wouldn’t let the outcome affect me the next day. I slept well, but when the alarm rang on Monday, I was upset again. Many plays from the game rolled through my head and I wondered why my team didn’t play better, play smarter and eke out the victory. But that’s what happens when you’re a sports fan. You sign up for the wins — and painful losses.
In the end, the Seahawks were the better team on Sunday because they came through when it counted the most. I have to accept that. I knew they were rolling through a dream season, but I still hoped the Niners would prevail and return to the Super Bowl. We nearly did. But we choked.
Now it’s the Seahawks’ turn to play for the NFL title. They’ve racked up a successful season — so have the Denver Broncos, and it should be a thrilling Super Bowl.
And … mark my words, we’ll be back in full force next year.
(For the record, Tony’s a good guy … remember, we were all kids once.)
Andy Nystrom is the editor of the Redmond Reporter.