By Dustin Lawrence
Six years ago my father passed away and while I miss him terribly there is one thing that always makes me wonder: Why the hell did he raise his four children as San Diego sports fans?
Seriously though. He knew. He himself grew up in Point Loma. He was a fan of all things San Diego, a lifelong season ticket holder for the Padres and the Chargers. He even had Clippers seats!
He knew the heartache, the pain. He knew that being a San Diego sports fan requires enormous amounts of faith even though deep down we sensed that the “Sports Gods” would never shine on our fair city.
He knew that no lead was ever safe, no matter how large. That all the off-season hope would go down in an ACL tear, a missed field goal or some other boneheaded display of athletic ineptitude. Oh, he knew.
So why did he do it?
My siblings and I could have been Chicago Cubs fans. They at least were lovable losers. Or how about a Green Bay Packers fans? Those cheese heads are pretty fun for kids, right?
But that’s not the route he took. That’s not the route that generations of San Diegans have taken. For some sadistic reason we continue to raise our children as fans of San Diego sports teams.
But, seriously why do we do it?
I for one choose to believe its loyalty.
San Diego fans are some of the most passionate and loyal fans I know. The best memories I have are from the Padres 1998 World Series run. To this day I can name the full starting lineup and when I close my eyes I can still see the “Keep the Faith” signs. I remember the Chargers long-run of division titles. The crowd chanting “LT!” These were all great moments. Moments every San Diego fan continues to cherish, even if every single one ended in utter heartbreak.
So maybe my Dad was right. Being a San Diego fan is a badge of honor. That badge may never have a Lombardi trophy on it, but it’s worn with pride nonetheless.
If my dad had chosen a different path, I never would have learned how to be loyal, how to root for the underdog, how to yell at the television, and most importantly that you really do have to wait for the fat lady to sing. Because as San Diego fans we truly know it ain’t over til it’s over.
Dustin Lawrence is a die-hard San Diego sports fan, whatever that means.
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