It was after Saturday’s disappointing loss. I was sitting at my parents place playing cards with my girlfriend and my sister, and of course, I was losing. I was getting my butt kicked at some game that was based purely off luck and I didn’t like it. Chief fans had had enough bad luck that night. I was upset about the game, as we all were. My girlfriend called me out for being a poor looser, which I was. Then she said that four words that every Chief fan that’s suffered like we did Saturday hears, "It’s just a game." BOOM, right there. We all know the feeling, because we all know it’s not "just a game." Monopoly is just a game, Risk is just a game, and hell Mario Cart Double Dash is just a game (that’s another story for another time). But the Chiefs, MY Chiefs, no no, that’s not "just a game."
The Chiefs are more than just something to entertain us for a Sunday after church. Being a KC fan is a way of life. We live and die for that team, when they win we feel the highest of highs. When they lose we feel that pain with them, that feeling of "what could I have done to help my team." It’s why we all spend too much time on AP reading and gossiping about our team. It’s why we have our Sunday rituals, our lucky clothes. It’s why we spend $100 plus dollars to make it to Arrowhead Stadium. It’s the memories we have. The Chiefs do so much more than entertain us. They give us a reason to come together. They are the reason I drive to my parent’s house once a week. There have been few games that I haven’t seen with my dad. I love it, knowing every Sunday during football season (except that dreaded bye week) I’ll get too see my family and cheer for a win. That’s more than "just a game."
We became season ticket holders two years ago, and even in the 2-14 season I loved it. But this year was worth the heartache. Going to Arrowhead at 7 am, smelling that barbecue, yelling, cheering, cursing, drinking, and high-fiving with complete strangers just because some guy with dreads just took a punt back 89 yards (I may add he looked pretty sick doing so). My dad loves this team; he sits on the aisle seat and high fives and yells "Go Chiefs!" to every single person that walks bye. We feel the air being taken out of the stadium after a loss, but more importantly we feel the energy after a win. That amazing game versus Oakland this year, that record breaking sound of 70,000 plus screaming in unison. Walking down that spiral ramp doing the tomahawk chop. That’s more than "just a game."
Losing Saturday wasn’t just one game. It was 23 years of losing for me. It was 43 years of losing for my dad. It was losing in 1994, 1995, 1997, 2003, 2006, and 2010 all over again. It was reliving that no punt game. It was remembering making that trip to a cold Arrowhead in 2010 knowing that the Chiefs didn’t stand a chance vs the Ravens but hoping anyway.
Hope, there it is, that one word. The Chiefs give us hope; hope that with hard work and a lucky bounce of a ball anyone can succeed. So when the season came to an end, when I knew that for eight months the Sunday traditions were over, the smell and sounds of Arrowhead stadium were over, our season was over,it hurt. It still hurts. So I’m sorry babe but you’re so very wrong it was much more that "just a game."