It was with great joy that I watched the New York Giants beating the Dallas Cowboys last night. The NFC East rivals played in prime time for week 1. Costly Dallas turnovers had the Giants leading by ten points at AT&T Stadium. But the 'boys, staying within striking distance throughout, persevered. A last-minute drive put them over the top by one point, thus handing the Giants an unfortunate, heartbreaking defeat.
I don't consider myself a Cowboy hater, but it does please me when they lose. My animosity for "America's Team" has been tempered by the fact that friends and family members, people that I respect and admire, are rabid fans of the Cowboys. I can't get too excited about my distaste for the team; I would risk alienating those around me. So I'll describe my attitude as a fevered indifference (if there is such a thing) towards the organization, because their success, or lack thereof, doesn't affect my life one iota.
But perspective is everything, especially on the part of Dallas fans: they seem to have none. There are some followers who curse the team when they're doing badly; but as soon as things turn up, and the team somehow ekes out a win, that fervor is directed at detractors and most often in a combative way. Cowboy fan is passionate, bordering on pathological. The best response from us non-fans is just to give them their space.
Cowboy fan can get as excited as he/she wants to get. The season is full of opportunities. Hell, it took John Elway 14 seasons to win his first Superbowl. (minor detail: that win came at Elway's fourth Superbowl appearance) Tony Romo is just a mere 12 years into the league. It could happen.
And if by some miraculous chance the Cowboys won a Superbowl, fans could accordingly use the phrase, "how 'bout them Cowboys?!!!" It's a catchy phrase, but from what I remember, it was immortalized by Coach Jimmy Johnson after the team won an AFC Championship game in the early 1990s, back when the Cowboys won Superbowls. Now it's used freely after any hint of success.
It's funny the way Cowboy fan acts. If the team is performing horribly, Cowboy fan recedes from social media. But as soon as they win, they flood Facebook or Twitter with chutzpah and seek out their haters. Oddly enough, that also happens when the team loses. Cowboy fan, regrettably, is not a graceful beast. They will fight for their honor, even though the team hasn't won a single thing in twenty years.
When the team wins the big game, I'll be happy for them and their fans. I'll be quick to congratulate my friends on their victory. But for now they need to check their Dez-Bryant-yelling-in-his-underwear bravado at the door. Wait until you're world champions to start thumping your chest.
Bring on week 2.