If I'm dreaming, don't you dare wake me up.
Everything feels foreign right now. Like an extremely pleasant dream where you've stepped into a strange yet wondrous land where nothing can go wrong. The sun is shining, perfect strangers greet you with a warm smile…You feel wanted here. Popular here.
I can compare my enjoyment of this magical season to one of my favorite pastimes: Sitting down and enjoying a fine wine. You see, there’s an art to it. Those who crack open a bottle, pour and swig away are profoundly missing the point – and experience – that a good wine has to offer.
To put simply, first, you let the wine breathe. Then you swirl the wine in the glass which releases the wine’s aromas. From there you take a subtle amount in, swirl it around in your mouth to absorb the tannins, acids and flavors. Finally, you swallow.
Someone who truly appreciates a good glass of wine does so with complete lucidity and consciousness of the moment and experience.
So this is how I am taking in this glorious season of ours.
Moment by moment. The sights and sounds of the 67,000 other rabid Seahawks fans like myself at Qwest Field. Each offensive and defensive series unfolds like a finely-tuned orchestra, playing the game out with near-perfect precision and pitch.
You can feel something different in the air this season. Momentum. Confidence, camaraderie and a commitment to each other on and off the field. You can see it in the way the players laugh and joke on the sidelines, the way they hang out at each other’s homes on Monday evenings to catch the Monday Night football game.
You get the feeling that this is a train with every component in place that is not going to stop until Detroit.
It’s true that everything tastes better when you’re winning. The jokes are funnier, the weather and traffic doesn’t bother you as much. Still, this is a franchise built with the right mix of character and chemistry. You get the sense if this team were 2-11 instead of 11-2, these players still wouldn’t quit on each other, their coach or their fans.
The jig is up. The news is out.
The Seattle Seahawks are the real deal.
Even Michael Irvin the Seahawks’ perennially cranky critic, donned a Seahawks hat on Monday Night Countdown and exclaimed that he’s now officially on the bandwagon.
Long-suffering diehard fans like yours truly – and many of you – are finding ourselves carrying a bag of mixed emotions as we wind through this street of dreams. We wonder how many people we come across during our daily activities assume we recently bought our Seahawks gear as we hop – like them – on the bandwagon.
I’ve been tempted in recent weeks to start walking around in my old-style, royal blue authentic #12 jersey. A bright blue billboard that says, “That’s right, kiddies…I have been a fan long before it was hip and fashionable. I have the emotional scars to prove it.”
Still, nothing can slow this magical carpet ride. Haven’t been a Seahawks fan but you find yourself suddenly interested? Hop on. Although diehards are loyal through thick and thin, casual fans simply need success to latch on to. It’s the magic elixir.
Nobody likes to lose, not even the diehard. But everyone loves – and can get behind - a winner. I understand that. In the fall of 1995 the Seattle Mariners, a team I could have cared less about before, suddenly won my heart as they created a season to remember for them, their fans and the city of Seattle for generations to come.
So I don’t fault those Johnny-come-latelys. Just beware. Once you hop on, this team just might steal your heart. These are boys you can truly rally behind and be proud of. They work hard and genuinely appreciate the position they are in.
To newcomers and diehards alike I say, enjoy and savor this season. Drink in each of these moments. Swirl each victory around, savor the taste and prepare for a finish that will last for generations to come.
Todd Breda is the Owner and Creative Director of Seahawks.Net. If you would like to e-mail Todd (he likes letters), send them to: email@example.com.