SKOL! FOOTBALL IS BACK!
…I love football.
It’s one of the things that makes autumn feel like autumn. The weather gets colder, school begins again, Thanksgiving’s right around the corner–and the football season kicks off. (I’ll let you decide if the pun was intended or not.) All the perfect pieces to the Fall puzzle.
It might seem strange for me to enjoy football. I’m not athletic at all, and though I usually wear jeans and a t-shirt, I’m also very feminine. Not necessarily the football-loving type.
But I was born to be a Minnesota Vikings football fan. Truly. I was born in the hospital across the street from the Vikings’ stadium. Purple and gold and love for the game runs through my veins.
And anyone who knows me, even a little, can tell you that I love football. I love the Minnesota Vikings so much, it’s even included in my author bio.
I like football for many reasons. Cheering for the Minnesota Vikings ties me back to my Minnesota heritage, which as a military kid, meant football tied me back to home. We cheer for the Vikings because they’re our home team, even in Georgia, Oklahoma, Ohio, and Texas.
But I don’t only like the Vikings because they’re Minnesotan. It’s not just because of the epic name or cool colors, either (though Vikings is a great football name and purple is my favorite color).
The Minnesota Vikings are a team of persistence and hope. They’re a team with drive. They’re underestimated. They’re a team with plenty of heartbreak, too. If you know professional football, you might know that we are the best team never to win a Super Bowl in our history, and that our hopes of victory are often crushed (usually by a wide left or wide right field goal attempt…).
Despite the pain of being a Vikings fan, I am honored to be a part of that story: a story of perseverance, of unshakable hope–a story that will make our eventual victory all the better. Sure, it’s not life or death stakes and there are certainly more important things in the world than football, but the story and saga of it, in some ways, reminds me to persevere and remain hopeful, too. (In other words – I see a Gospel reminder in the trials of this football team I love.)
I also love football because of my relationship with my Dad. When I was away at Baylor, he and I still watched football together, miles apart, every week. We’d start the game recording at the same time, text reactions throughout, and always wrap up with a post-game phone call. It became our tradition. It became a way to stay in touch during college. I’m glad I get to watch every week side-by-side on the couch this year, but I know no matter how far apart we are, we’ll always share football games.
Some of my favorite memories are associated with football, too. The white noise of the crowd and announcers every Sunday when Dad would “steal” the big TV and watch games, back when I was an uninterested little girl. Dad’s excitement when I would sit and watch the games with him and ask questions to learn. Watching a live game at a Waco BWW when my parents came to visit me at Baylor. Attending Baylor football games as a student, especially when I got to run the Baylor Line. Throwing a Super Bowl Party for my grad school friends. Earning the superlative “Most Passionate” for my Zoom presentation on the Minnesota Vikings, which made everyone laugh as I basically shouted at my computer for five straight minutes. Witnessing the Minneapolis Miracle and screaming with joy over the phone with my Dad. And that’s just a few of the best.
As much as I’d like to say this is our year to win the Super Bowl, I have no clue if it will be or not. I’m just happy to watch football again. I believe we’ll win a Super Bowl someday. And I’ll keep cheering the Vikings on until we do.
And with that, I’m off to watch the first game of the new football season. SKOL Vikes!