Editorials

Steelers Fever – No, Really, Who ARE You People?

No, Really, Who ARE You People? – By Neal Coolong

Steelers Fever Exclusive Editorial

There’s a particular story about me my friends like to mention for a laugh. I admit, it’s pretty funny, very embarrassing and always a crowd-pleaser.

I don’t think Steelers Fever will let me print The Story here, but that’s not the point.

Some globular form that resembles a female was dating my friend Jammin’ last summer. She really brought nothing to the table, and had a horribly annoying habit of acting as if we all have known her for years, and we had a “hug-upon-seeing” kind of relationship.

This never flew with me.

We were sitting around a few weeks before my friend Bus’s wedding, just talking. She happened to be there, attempting to eat the face off my friend at every opportunity. Out of nowhere, she brought up The Story.

“OMIGAWWWD! That is SOOOO funny! I can’t believe that happened. You are so stupid!”

“…Who are you, again?”

My friends can (and do) make fun of me quite often. They are allowed. She is not. She hasn’t earned the right to mention The Story.

She is what is turning out to be the Quintessential Bengals Fan. Who are you again, Cincinnati? You haven’t earned anything. Nothing. Don’t pretend that you have, all you Bengals globular forms.

“WHO DEY?” is actually a very good question. Who are you?

There is an individual who visits Steelers Fever often, proclaiming his loyalty to the New England Patriots. He told Steelers fans last year that we haven’t earned anything yet. He was right. Now that we have, we can honestly say we earned and deserve respect. What does Cincinnati have to claim? A good quarterback? A record barely over .500 the last three seasons (.530)?

In case you’re wondering, outside of that whole Super Bowl ring thing, Pittsburgh is .680 over the same span, winning 10 of the last 13 games between the two.

I don’t usually stoop to the level of Haters. I didn’t even respond when posters attacked my family and threatened my life after I wrote my column about last year’s playoff game.

http://www.steelersfever.com/cgi-bin/reviews/reviews.pl?review=0601

In there, you’ll see Bengals Faithful accusing me of misinterpreting facts, being a biased and ignorant writer.

I wasn’t aware that satire is a foreign concept in the greater Cincinnati area (although it wouldn’t surprise me), and after eight years in journalism, I still have yet to find evidence that sports writing isn’t, at its core, subjective.

I couldn’t help but notice the same attacks when I was reading esteemed colleague Nick Signorelli’s editorial. It’s accurate, humorous and entertaining.

And, as usual, not at all received by Bengals fans.

I could get all psychological, and say this is merely a passive-aggressive form of jealousy, most likely inspired by the fans of one team greatly overrating their team’s chances in the post-season. But more than likely, this is just flat-out Hatin’.

I was used to it up until recently. Pittsburgh Tribune-Review columnist Joe Starky ran with some comments the Messiah Carson Palmer said in regards to hating the Steelers.

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_455323.html

So mark up the recent tally of anti-Steelers sentiment in the national media. Palmer’s comments came in Sports Illustrated, which also took out of context comments Hines Ward had made in regards to the team, and an extended piece by NFL writer Peter King giving Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren a podium to continue his crybaby tantrum over the Super Bowl.

(I would like to point out Steelers Insider Jim Wexell’s excellent piece http://steelers.scout.com/2/533847.html on the subject of Holmgren and the national media’s appointment of Seattle as the Super Bowl champion.)

Of course Palmer hates Pittsburgh. I can fully understand why he would. My issue is the principle behind all of this. It’s as if the torch was passed to Cincinnati. Can someone explain to me how and when that happened?

Or is it just Cincinnati’s delusional thinking? How easily is it forgotten that Palmer barely has a .500 record as a starter (19-17). How quickly everyone – media, Bengals, players, fans – dismisses the fact they have beaten Pittsburgh ONCE under Marvin Lewis. It’s a complete mystery why people seem to think that Pittsburgh only beat Cincinnati en route to a Super Bowl title.

I don’t recall Cincinnati beating Indianapolis on the road. I didn’t see them pummel Denver as the visiting team. I didn’t even see them pick up a Super Bowl ring after their one season above .500 in the last 15 years. Where does this laughable demand for instant respect come from? One win over the division champs? Please.

Just face the facts. Pittsburgh beat Cincinnati twice this season. They beat them twice each in the previous two seasons. Pittsburgh won the Super Bowl, and Cincinnati would have to win every game they played for the next five consecutive years to match what Pittsburgh has done in terms of record, division titles and Super Bowl championships.

Don’t be getting all excited about one regular season win and one division title. Both were nullified by Pittsburgh winning the other two meetings, and Pittsburgh winning the Super Bowl.

Just accept it. You’ll be in a better place the day you realize your fantasy 2005 season ended exactly how it should have, and despite all your dreams and aspirations, you really didn’t win anything of importance last year.

Since this fact has been true of every season since 1989, I’m having a tough time figuring out why you think it’s different now.

So the issue comes down to one simple question. Really, “Who Dey?”

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