It really began in the hotel on Saturday afternoon. Staying in the same hotel as the team, it was so refreshing to see so many New York Giants fans trickling into the lobby bar area as the afternoon progressed – all of us waiting for our team to arrive. So many fans of all ages, men and women, children, different ethnicities… all having taken the time, paid the fees, and having driven or flown in from so many different places to be there with our team. So many people dressed in Giants garb, with helmets and balls in hand, anxiously waiting to welcome the team. So many more than I had anticipated, being roughly 2500 miles from East Rutherford, New Jersey. It was really quite something.
And while I was certainly participating when the team arrived, I also felt like an observer, as I watched a number of the Giants players and staff interacting with fans and visiting family members – Steve Weatherford, Louis Murphy, DaMontre Moore, Will Hill, Mike Patterson, Antrel Rolle, Spencer Paysinger, Josh Brown, Terrell Thomas and others. John Carney was even there supporting the team he played for toward the end of his career. I’ve seen T2 post many pictures of his little girl, and when I noticed her bright-eyed, smiling face in the lobby – it was so clear how much she loves her Daddy. It was really quite a warm feeling.
But even more wonderful to take in… I mean really, this was just amazing to me… was the stadium the next day. We arrived at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, and very quickly we started to notice, there were MORE people in Giants Blue, than there were of the home team. Thousands! Everywhere I looked there was a sea of blue 10s and 80s and 88s and 91s and 92s and 56-jerseys abound! OJ Anderson and Phil McConkey were even there to support!
And inside the stadium – it was a BIG BLUE family, a unified crew of people from far and wide, and again, from so many different backgrounds, dressed in Giants ponchos and watches and jerseys and t-shirts and hats and gloves (because it is COLD in California this week) and shoes… And despite the loss, we were all still wearing them when so many of us ‘accidentally’ congregated in the airport last night to catch planes home.
ALL of these people had come from so many different places to see and support their team. And what’s so cool outside of the sheer numbers? Every one of these people shared a common ground – a love and passion for their team that is down to their core, and that will live with them forever. There is something all too special about that – something quite rewarding – despite the loss. A team of guys, a group of coaches, and an organization with an amazing history rich in tradition created the foundation of this huge family of people in blue.
There is something quite outstanding about that sense of oneness. Of unity. It makes all of our differences seem so small – and that which brings us together, so much more important. It seems so appropriate for this time of the year.
And as we begin to look toward the off-season, and the change that will inevitably come, it is my hope that we can all continue to reflect on this great foundation, and use it as leverage to create a better tomorrow – whether it be in the game of football, for the team we love, or for all of humanity.
I hope you are all enjoying your holiday season.
As always: ALL IN
GO GIANTS! (Go upset those Hawks…)
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