Monday, January 3, 2011

Nobody Circles the Wagons...

...Like the Buffalo Bills.  Eighteen years ago today, I was sitting with my dad on a frozen bench in the scoreboard end zone of Rich Stadium.  It was Wildcard Weekend, and Buffalo was without its Hall of Fame quarterback and running back, Jim Kelly and Thurman Thomas as well as one of its standout linebackers, Cornelius "The Biscuit" Bennett.  It was rainy, cold, and miserable.  Yet, as used to be customary, spirits in Western New York were soaring.

I can still hear longtime Bills announcer, Van Miller yelling "DO YOU BELIEVE IT?!?  IT IS FANDEMONIUM!!!"  That fateful day, Buffalo overcame a (still NFL record) 32 point deficit.  The crazy thing is that if not for my uncle promising my cousin nachos at halftime, we might have left at halftime.  However, promise, he did, and so at half, he waited on the line for her food.  By the time she was done eating, the comeback had begun.  The rest, as they say, is history.  No words I could type could ever do justice to the surreal atmosphere and the incredible turnaround from despair to pure unfettered ecstasy.

I'll close with an excerpt from coach Marv Levy's halftime speech:

"You've got thirty more minutes. Maybe it's the last thirty minutes of your season. When your season's over, you're going to have to live with yourselves and look yourselves in the eyes. You'd damn well better have reason to feel good about yourselves, regardless of how this game turns out."


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