To my fellow members of the West Coast WHO DEY Nation,
What a season. It took me a while to work up to this point, but when the sting of our playoff loss wore off, I felt it was necessary to send out a postseason email (for the first time ever) to put a bow on the season and be sure to make clear that we needn't wait 8+ months to see one another again.
As I said, for me the sting has worn off. I'm finally at that point where I can look past having my appetite wet for playoff football and being disappointed, and take a longer look at how we got there to begin with. How many wins should we have had this season? 4? 5? We were picked as the worst team in football by pundit after pundit. 9 wins later with a rookie core, we have a lot to look forward to, not to mention a pair of first round picks in this year's draft, thanks to the bumbling Raiders (bye bye Hue Jackson) and old #9 (way to choke in the clutch).
In summary, always nice to get an exciting ride when you expected a short drive. 9 wins was fun, but we have gotten a glimpse of the future and it looks bright; Our young skill position players (QB, WRx3, TE), and some serious talent in the defensive box (DE, DT, LB) might be setting us up for a perennial playoff team. Now if we could just make sure we can hang on to our DC for another year... but that's out of our hands.
On the LACBB front, what a year! Our consistent turnout for each Sunday this season has nearly doubled from last year to this one. We equaled our past seasons' high for attendees at this year's IT'S SKYLINE TIME!!! and we FAR exceeded our highest attendee total in history for this season's playoff game.
One thing that this group of fans has over any other that I know of in SoCal is the quality of people and (hence) the ability for so many strangers to genuinely get along so well. It really is the high point of my week every Sunday when I see this many people come together to have a good time and meet new folks with a common bond. I'm glad everyone is a part of it, and hope you will continue to be in the future. This truly is more than just a group of people hooking up to watching some football.
Enough of the sentimental bullshit!
The other reason for this email is to remind you all that there are a lot of other opportunities in the offseason to get together. Not unlike the chances
for us to get together in Cincinnati for the
games over the holidays, we have developed a close-knit group that should all be able to hook up at other opportunities in sunny Southern California. I wanted to make sure you had an idea of a few upcoming events to keep in mind as opportunities to see your brothers and sisters from WHO DEY nation in the offseason.
This Saturday (read: tomorrow), we will be in Hollywood to celebrate the birth of Yours Truly. I happen to share the birthday with my evil Steelers roommate, Loren, whom most of you know. Saturday starting at 8pm (until question mark), we'll be at LOADED (www.loadedrockbar.com) on Hollywood Blvd about 2 blocks west of the Hollywood/Vine train stop. I would love the chance to have some beverages with my Bengal crew there. Several of us
met up for Hepp's bday in Los Feliz last week and had a blast but wished there were some more Bengal folk represented, so why not come down this weekend? I'm not real into the HWood scene, but LOADED is a dive-y, reasonably priced, unpretentious bar smack in the middle of Hollywood. Plus, they usually run specials on Budweiser and shots, so you can see why I'm a fan...
Aside from that, there are other events we often hang out for during the season, so make a note of it to find out what's going on! We will definitely be hanging out somewhere for the Superbowl. Whether we do a party at someone's house (Art the Pittsburgh fan has one every year at an awesome house overlooking the city) or at a bar somewhere central for everyone. Also, some of us will take off a Thursday in order to have a marathon kickoff day to the NCAA bball tournament in March. Speaking of March, there's some sort of Irish Holiday that will also find us near the center of the city (preferably starting early and beating the crowds). Next thing you know, it's April and it's time to play hooky from work to watch the Cincinnati Reds on opening day from some crummy bar somewhere deep in LA.
Obviously, other options abound. You wanna get together for something, let me know and we'll do a mass email to invite the gang! I'm totally into any other big games, the NFL draft, et al. ALSO, for those who don't know, it's not too early to think about next season... Put a few bucks away and get ready for the first ever LACBB bus trip! We'll be getting a block of tix for the Bengals/Chargers game next season where we all sit in the same section and take a luxury booze bus to and from San Diego! It will be an epic day for sure.
I think that this has gone on long enough. I really hope to see some of you this Saturday night for general birthday debauchery, and anyone who may not have exchanged phone numbers with me, please feel free to send me and email (address below) and I'll let you know anytime we are getting together. In the meantime, I will endeavor to keep everyone abreast of any gatherings via this site (while still making sure to not fill up your mailbox).
I would be remiss at this point if I didn't thank my organizing cohorts for a great season of bringing Bengals fans together. Dalhia is the heart and soul (and enthusiasm) of this group, and Hepp is the glue that keeps all this shit together. You guys are fucking awesome.
A great season, and a better 2012!