I'm sure you've heard that according to Harris Polling, the Seahawks are the 2nd-least popular NFL franchise in the United States. I'd be lying if I said this didn't bother me. It's just another one of the seemingly constant stream of indignities the Twelve Army has to endure, part of a tapestry that goes back to '76 and includes Super Bowl XL, The Phantom Touchdown, and a million other petty and felonious transgressions. Hell, the players notice this crap too. Key quote from our Quarterback:
“Oh, it s cool, but when there are national stories about our team, they are rarely very accurate or rarely do they tell the full story of what’s going on,” the former Boston College star said, laughing, too. “If we start winning games again, maybe we’ll get on TV again, maybe we’ll get a Sunday night game one of these days, it’s been a long time. I’m not even going to ask for a Monday Night game… But it’s like being in the Witness Protection Program.”
I could sit here and question the poll's methodology (why not factor in attendance, merchandise sales, TV ratings, internet traffic, etc), or I could point out that a playoff run would send Seattle shooting back up these rankings next year. Instead, I'll admit that shit like this fuels me.
I wear Seahawks gear almost every single day, and a big reason is my pathological need to constantly "represent." It's as if my mission out here in the Wilderness of the Midwest is to say to anyone I encounter: "See! Seahawks fans DO EXIST! Like DryLand, we are not mythical!" And if anyone ever comments on my Hawks gear, they almost always give me some variation of "why do you like the Seahawks???" (With a look on their faces like I just blasted them with eggfarts) I would imagine running into a Seahawks fan out here is like briefly getting a glimpse of a Chupacabra, Sasquatch, or the Mothman to your typical Ohioan.
So being the Martha Dumptruck or Carrie White of NFL High School is painful, but productive; it will make our eventual glorious triumph that much more delicious. It's this constant drumbeat of dismissal and disrespect that elevates almost every game to the level of a twisted morality play for me. Put as simply as possible: Being a picked-on, unpopular kid growing up makes rooting for the Seahawks a VERY natural move for me.
So this Sunday, for me at least, it's not just Seattle v Chicago: It's Lambda Lambda Lambda v. those Alpha Beta mother fuckers.