1.16.2009

Laker Fans are Good for Something

I have this habit of always identifying the first year I became a fan when someone asks me about the Celtics. Inquiries from strangers usually occur because of what I'm wearing.

"Nice shirt," someone I don't know says to me. "You a big Celtics fan?

"Yup, since '74. " I say.

Not quite sure why I do this. But I have a couple of theories. First, no one used to ask me about the Celtics, and now everyone does. I want to make sure that everyone knows I'm not a bandwagon jumper. Second, the year you first became a Celtics' fan is an article of faith. It's like the year you were born. Thirty-five years is a long time to be a member of one family. Besides your blood relatives, try to think of another group you've belonged to for 35 years.

The other day I was playing hoops with my Lakers' friend, when another player observed, "the Celtics finally made it back to the top." Yes, I said, I've been a fan since '74 and it was a long wait between titles.

My Lakers friend took me aside and said, "you know, Lex, when you've been a fan of something since before age ten, you've been a fan you're whole life. Just tell people you're a lifelong Celtics' fan. That should be good enough. If they want to question the depth of your loyalties, screw 'em."

Good advice. But the memories from 1974 remain vivid and powerful. So I may just keep telling people the year I joined the family anyway. Cowens over Kareem in a series where the Bucks were favored should be a cherished memory for all of Celticdom. Somehow, though, Banner number 12 never gets its due.

2 comments:

FLCeltsFan said...

I've been on board since 1968. And I still don't think Lakers fans are good for anything just like their team.

Lex said...

Yeah, wait until you hear about last night

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