I've been ruminating a lot about the bone-deep problems in the Seahawks fan base since the reactions to the Josh Wilson trade rocketed right into loony "Oh noes! My favorite band is breaking up" territory... I hinted at this notion before, but I wanted to explain it in more detail: Seahawks fans have a confidence problem.
When I was growing up and trying to date girls, I suffered from an overabundance of honesty. I was too honest about how I felt about them, and too honest about how I felt about myself (which wasn't very good). This led them either to bolt for the hills, or quickly and firmly place me in the "friend zone," as they dated giant assholes who had the virtue of self-confidence. I was told over and over that I had to "fake it until I made it."
I never got to that point with women. I was lucky enough to find one who liked me as I was, so I never had to put on that bullshit act. But I think this can be applied to Seahawks fans...
As a group, Seahawks fans have many great qualities. Compared to other NFL fan bases we are more educated, in better shape, more progressive, and REALLY FUCKING LOUD. However, in general, we posess a key quality of the geek and the nerd: A lack of self-confidence.
Just take a quick survey of other NFL fan bases... You will see a blizzard of bullshit false bravado at every turn, from Oakland to Jacksonville. Even if their team is doomed to failure, fans in most other NFL cities would get in your face if you shat on their team, or suggested they were doomed to fail.
I don't get that impression from Seahawks fans over the 27 years I've been a Twelve. Even since I was a kid, I've been appalled at how quickly and easily many other Seahawks fans will just fold in any argument with a fan from another team; how quickly THEY THEMSELVES will refer to the Seahawks with derogatory language like "Sea Chickens" or "Sea shits," etc. (Side note: If you pull that shit around me I will call you on it. And if you try to say that it's ok for you to say things like that about my team because you are a fan, I'll retort "Fuck you. you are very CLEARLY NOT a fan.")
I have friends who root for other NFL teams, and they are unanimously amazed at the negativity Seahawks fans bring into the tournament. Even if I don't believe what I am saying, if anyone fucks with the Seahawks, I will defend my team. I've been doing it since I was 8 years old, surrounded by a shockingly high number of Broncos fans in the Tri-Cities.. I lost untold riches making school yard bets on the Seahawks throughout the 80s and early 90s... I felt I had no choice; I had to back up my Hawks, even if it meant pissing away the quarters I had squirreled away to play Paperboy at 7-11 after school. I've spent the last decade out in the midwest defending the Seahawks from fairly regular & bizarre attacks, at the risk of looking like a goddamn obsessive lunatic.
Is it a Seattle thing? I didn't grow up there, and I've never actually lived there, so maybe there is something about the sports culture that eludes me? I'm open to enlightenment here.
I'm begging all of you... Even if you DON'T believe in this team right now, FAKE it. Tell the asshole at work that you think the Seahawks will make the playoffs. Come to Qwest and scream your fucking head off for 3 hours on gameday. Be a motherfucking mean Soldier of Twelve and stow this fucking insidious negativity, at least in public.
Side note: The title of this post comes from this kick-ass Sleater-Kinney song.. enjoy!