What does it mean to be a fan of the Houston Dynamo? It's a simple question which I am sure everyone will have an answer to, some similar, some not so much. It begs the follow-up question, what are the varying degrees of being a fan of the Dynamo? Is being a fan bleeding Orange every day? Is it attending or viewing as many games each season? Is it maybe keeping up with the news and information about the Dynamo, since it's hard enough to find anywhere but independent blogs? Is it commenting on those blogs? Is it cheering for the team when they win and feeling their sorrow when they lose? My answer, after the jump.Being a fan of the Houston Dynamo embodies the one great unifier of all sports, passion. There are, of course, fans who embody the passion of the game or team they follow. There are also those fans, however, which would fall under the less than passionate category. For them, any sports outing is a family event or a chance for networking with some other individual. I do not write this to shun those "fans", but instead to explain where we, the impassioned few, come from, to allow those "fans" a glimpse into our world.
We are the ones who take time in the offseason to watch videos about our Reserve Players in other countries practicing and playing. We are the ones who research diligently looking for the tiniest morsel or hint so that our assertions can be proven right. We are the ones who find a way, no matter how tough it may be, to watch every game we can, just so we can follow up the next day writing about the players' performances.
What makes us tick isn't some need to win. It isn't some sick sense of belonging. What makes us tick is a fire burning deep in our gut, win or lose. There is a heart-wrenching, acid-enducing nausea when the team loses, but more than that, there is this extreme sense of pride and glory when our team wins. What drives us to cheer until we simply have nothing left to give? The love of the game and of the team who plays it for us.
We are the ones who tirelessly search out prospects at 3 or 4 in the morning after a loss, not because we're twisted and sick individuals, but because we want to do whatever we can to sate our desire for our team to taste that victory once more. We're the ones who come up with songs and chants, just in the hopes that our players might hear them and mention them at some point somewhere.
Perhaps when it comes down it, we are the ones who these players live and die for, who these players bust their asses for game in and game out, every practice for. But here's the thing I find most amazing...
These players do it for you, too. It's not just us they play for, but they bust their asses for those who even scoff at the nil-nil draws can have a taste of the beautiful game. They play because they love the game. They play because they love the fans, and the support and the passion of the fans when they win. They love the cheers, but they also love the insults from opposing fans, too.
So when our new Houston Dynamo Stadium is christened, please excuse us if we cry like little babies. Excuse the players if they weep under the power of their emotions. Ignore our insanity when our team takes the field for the first time, and when we score our first goal. Please, forgive our expletives as the opposition have calls in their favor, and when they score a goal. Please understand, friends, it is with great honor that we, the fans of the Houston Dynamo, welcome you to our stadium.
The Orange Crush
I'll be honest, I debated saving this for the beginning of the season or the day of the first home game in the new stadium. I wanted to share it now. I couldn't wait. Also...I will repost it on that fateful day.