When the Bengals start the real deal in September, beware of the bandwagon fans. They’ve had time to learn a few things. But, it won’t last.
We’ve all met them. They’re the people (dare I say fans) who routinely pledge their allegiance to the Bengals and then fade away. If the Stripes are doing well and on a serious hot streak, these “fans” are pests that never shut up. But, as soon as times get rough, they seem to hide behind the nearest shrub and claim they saw it coming. It’s that time of year. Get ready for the bandwagon troops to settle in for at least the first half of the season.
If you’ve never encountered a bandwagon fan, they’re easy to spot. These are the sad people who go around asking questions that a Bengals lifer would know instantly. Oh, you’ve never been confronted by one? It’s always a hilarious moment that you’ll never forget. They constantly mispronounce names, keep talking about the 2015 Wild Card fiasco and know nothing of past Bengals accomplishments. In other words, you have to bite your lip and stay calm.
What’s a bandwagon fan’s go-to phrase? “Man, they suck.”
You don’t say? This is something that lifers have come to grips with and embrace. Yes, there are times when the Bengals drive fans insane. But, the moments of sheer joy override the anger and bring a smile. The Bengals may be a bumbling group of underachievers to some. But, to fans that have been there for years, they’re just a few good moves away from the Big Dance.
Back In The Day?
It’s not unusual for bandwagon fans to shy away from the team. At the first sign of distress, they want nothing else to do with the franchise. Dumping the Bengals like a bad habit is a simple move for them. They don’t have the memories it takes to become devoted to the Stripes.
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Who can forget James Brooks’ training regimen (if you don’t know him, you’re a poser)? If anyone knows where Ravine Hill is, that was his deal. It may be the stuff of legends, but it’s been said that he tied a tire around his waist and ran up that steep street. The incline is at least 40 to 45 degrees. I’m no engineer. But, that hill is crazy in a car. Thinking about Brooks running it with a wheel…. Maybe I’m just a lifer who has 42 years worth of Bengals memories scrambled. But, I do know I’ve had my moments. There were days when I wanted to chuck it all and find another team to cheer for. Yet, I always stayed true to the Orange and Black.
Bandwagon fanatics are saddling up for another season. They’ll be buying gear and talking about players that they have no clue about. When the Bengals lose their first game, they’ll be ready to call the season a bust. Lifers understand that the Fat Lady doesn’t sing until Week 8. The halfway point tells a story. In the wild and crazy AFC North, sometimes it takes longer than that.
Stay Bengals Strong. My son once told me to get another team to root for. That lasted a grand total of six days. The next weekend, it was all Cincy again. I’m down for life.