The Five Billion Person Party

Notes of a wandering American soccer fan

They dislike the home team

Posted by steigs on December 22, 2007

This one is for the entertaining I Dislike Your Favorite Team blog…

I live in DC and, I hereby confess, I hate the Redskins.  Sure, I didn’t grow up around here but it’s not like I root for the team of my youth, the Rams.  They left CA too, which makes it difficult to show native loyalty by cheering for them.  (Similarly abandoned, my brother adopted, of all teams, the Bengals during their dark 90’s out of pity, as best I can tell.)

Living in DC it’s hard to avoid the Redskins worship.  And it bugs me.

Their owner is an incompetent greedy Steinbrenner.  Their nickname is racist.  Their fanbase has the delusion that the team is still an elite contender when it’s been years since they’ve been a Super Bowl threat.  The new stadium is in the middle of nowhere and, by most accounts, is a machine built to suck your wallet dry while being surrounded by drunken lunkheads.  Bleah.

So I used to joke that I didn’t have a team.  I just rooted for whoever was playing the Redskins.

(After Katrina I adopted the Saints, out of solidarity with one of my favorite places.)

Now, as often happens in the five billion person party, I learn there are some soccer fans who’ve taken this idea to new heights.  Meet the Norwegian group Fanklubben Heia Bortelaget (“Supporters of the Away Team”).  The latest Four Four Two has an article on them (not available on-line, alas):

“Back in 1992, a group of psychology students from Trondheim University, who were sick and tired of Rosenborg’s dominance of the league, decided to try and disrupt the status quo.  Their scheme involved attending matches in pink, singing anti-Rosenborg chants (the catchy ‘Come on Away Team’ being a favourite), and even awarding prizes to any side that managed an away win — all in the hope that anyone, other than Rosenborg, would win the title.”

Awesome!  I’m kind of tempted to get decked out in pink and try that at Fed Ex.  Well, except for the fact some giant drunken meatheads would inevitably treat me to some English-style hooligan thrashing.

But here’s the other problem.  It didn’t work!  Rosenborg reeled off 13 straight league titles  after the fan club was formed.  I’m not going to do anything that might help get the Redskins a Super Bowl.  Nope, not me.


2 Responses to “They dislike the home team”

  1. I do not know how you found us, be we are kindred spirits, but I have to say I do love my old home team of the Washington Drunken Savages. I hate their owner, and I hate hate hate hate their name, but I love that team.

    Let me tell you friend, you might hate the Redskins, but if you spent a year in Minnesota, you would dislike the Packers fanbase so much that you would get behind your home team posthaste. They are insufferable. Vikings fans would be worse, except that their team is doomed to fail.

    Todd Collins with an over 100 QB rating in 3 out of his first four starts? The sheer beautiful insanity of Clinton Portis? I loved the hardest hitting safety in Football since Ronnie Lott, until he gave up the ghost protecting his family from a botched home invasion. (You want to talk about people to hate, how about those sports talkers who insisted that Taylor’s past was catching up with him, before they knew Fact 1.)

    I hate those guys, too.

    Glad you’ve enjoyed our blog. I like what I’ve seen of this one so far, mainly because it linked to mine. But I’ll have to poke around–I believe the world needs more DC area sportsbloggers who hate the name “Redskins” and dislike Dan Snyder (never to be forgiven for signing Deion Sanders) and loves soccer. The more the merrier.

  2. steigs said

    Good to hear from you, Mr. Monkey!

    I know the feeling. I moved to the Bay Area in ’84 — just as the Niners went all the way to the Super Bowl. The sheer media overkill drove me to dislike the Niners, which I do to this day.

    I moved to DC in ’91 — just in time for a Redskins Super Bowl run. Same deal — an avalanche of media worship that drove me into the opposing camp.

    I suppose I should offer to move somewhere else to bring some long-suffering fanbase a Super Bowl. But how powerful is my mojo? Could I even bring a Super Bowl to the Cardinals? Or would it have to be a pre-existing playoff team? (Hello, Nashville or Seattle!)

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