Like Happy Lemmings to the Seahawk
By William May
Published: 02/06/14 Topics: Seattle, Sports Comments: 0
As I drove my wife and son to downtown Seattle from our home just 20 blocks to the East, the traffic, usually light, was oppressive. On every side street thousands of people were streaming down the hill like lemmings to the sea. Sidewalks were so full, entire families walked down the middle of the auto jammed streets.
On the gigantic ferries that bring vehicles into Seattle, many walk-on passengers arrived before dawn to get a seat among the other thousands sailing, but many had to wait up to three crossings just to get a standing room only ticket. They worried they would be too late.
From North and South, state patrol troopers said automobile traffic on the 8 lane Interstate freeways were in grid lock for ten miles on each side of the city. Drives and passengers stood outside their cars unable to continue to what was then the center of the universe
As my car inched across an overpass, a roar erupted from the thousands of nearby people as they screamed, shook their fists, and waved flags at several buses that were then inching along the freeway below they headed for Seattle. Emergency lights were blinking on the buses, while they were accompanied by a police escort. Every pedestrian stopped to stare and scream. Cars stopped, occupants jumped out to join in the screaming, leaving their cars running with doors wide open.
The city seems to have succeeded from the United States, all visible American flags were gone and replaced with odd new flags. All in green and blue sporting a giant number 12 emblazoned on them.
The day before the Seattle School Superintendent had announced that no student absences would be tolerated today but quickly changed his mind after getting thousands of angry messages - including a tweet from the Mayor.
Later it was reported that 25% of the students in the region called in sick with a mysterious form of hysteria . As did workers from major corporations, big companies and small. In all, over 750,000 people converged on a short street in the middle of a town bathed in cold temperatures but brilliantly blue skies.
Getting anywhere near the city center was impossible, so I dropped by family off close to downtown and headed back up the hill to my office. It was eerie. I felt like the only car driving East away from town. Stopping at a large coffee shop I was delighted to find the place empty, no line.
The barista asked if I was a football fan. "No," I said, "Is that what's going on?"
"Are you kidding me?" he asked with disbelief. All that hub bub out there are the fans happily going to attend a parade that will feature their Seahawks football team. A group made up of long suffering veterans, players selected low in the draft when other teams felt them unworthy, and numerous draft choices that were ridiculed by pundits.
It seemed that the Seahawks last Sunday had just won the biggest sporting event in the United States - the Super Bowl. Hopes were high all year, but the Seahawks dominated games and unexpectedly overpowered a team who promised to dispatch Seattle with ease. Nothing motivates like disrespect, and Seattle dispatched the Denver Bronco team 43 to 8, coming close to shutting out a team favored to trounce them.
Their coach took an unusual approach by preparing a team who never allowed themselves to say that winning the top title was their goal. They decided it far simpler and far more direct to purely set a record of One win and no loss in every game. Each game would take care of the next.
In the title game, they made it just another game and one in which they were completely prepared to simply go One win and no loss.
In fact, the annual celebration that in other sports would be called a world championship, is only a Super Bowl for American football because it has been unique to North America.
In recent years teams have traveled to England for games and plans are afield to let other destinations experience what America has known for so long - American football exhibits much of what is great about America.
Thus being that working together works best. That persevering is always worth the pain. That no one should ever let anyone else define them, or limit them, or disrespect them. Every child who watched today's parade in person or saw it on the televisions that were on in every home and every business, learned something important.
It was voiced by the team leader quarterback, in the words of his recently deceased father. When this player was told he was too small, too slow and didn't fit in anywhere, he remembered the words of his father who said, "Why not you Russell? Why not?"
Sports are an opportunity for every citizen in the region to smile, remember and share. It makes people lively while appreciating others. Lastly, it makes people happy and what could be better than that?
Author: William May
Blog #: 0345 – 02/06/14
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