Steve "Kirby" Faber has done some work with us in the past and was actually in our Season 2 Finale, and he has come through with a nice article for this blog. One of the biggest Pens fans I know, I'm sure he won't disappoint, though I don't know if I agree with him about the smart phones (I'm still in the 20th Century with that). Without further adieu, here's Kirby.
Thoughts on Surviving a Championship Season
By Steve Faber for Hockeyweek.blogspot.com
As I write this article, I am watching the last march of the 2009 Champion Penguins. As I am no slouch in the fan department, I feel it is my duty to help those who didn't grow up eating, sleeping, and breathing sports that I did, so that if by some odd chance we don't repeat(though unlikely), they can survive the long road of the regular season and the even longer road of the playoffs.
The first thing I must stress is: COMPASSION. There is no reason to expect that you aren't going to get booed when you go into another team's arena wearing the away colors. Just like your team probably won't get as many calls on the ice, if you escalate confrontations, you may only get one phone call...to the bail bondsman. So, be nice about the fact that your team will clean the glass with their players' faces.
The next thing to survive is: HYDRATION. Whether it be Pop or Port, Water or Whisky, there is no way that you can survive the season without being hydrated. You can't cheer if you can't breathe, so save up and get that extra $4 for the beer so you can lung-hurl your team to the top.
Bringing me to the next thing, which is: ECONOMIZATION. In the current state of the nation, this is nothing new. There are times when your cheers and jeers just aren't going to be heard, so let the other fans have their fun, and then show them how one voice can shudder the nerves of ten thousand! Usually after whistles, if you get them going early, or when the players come out of the tunnel, if you're close to it.
Fourth and fourthmost is: PERSPIRATION. Your team sweats off a large lake of water so you can get enjoyment. It's only fair that you put forth a little effort as well. Whether that means taking the extra night shift on game 1 so you can buy tickets for game seven, or keeping your AC up in the house so you can freeze the garage for the annual start of the playoffs ice skate and date(a wonderful idea, no?), there is no reason not to work at it.
Moving along, a very important thing is: INFORMATION. If you don't know what you're talking about, sit the hell down until you look it up on your computer or your smartphone (PS-you don't have a smartphone? FTW?) As a fan of some of the best and also some of the worst teams in all of professional sports, I know my history. I also know, because of a certain Sunday where I ran the entire box for the Beer League, it's not that hard to keep hockey stats, or to remember them fondly when the time comes to show up the competition.
Finally, the best thing I can say is: DEDICATION. When everyone says you can't, you must. Whenever anyone says you won't, you do. When people ask you why the hell your beard isn't off, even though you're graduating and should be clean-shaven, just tell them what you tell everyone who looks at you funny...hockey season. They'll understand. And if they don't, just check 'em into the nearest lightpole, they don't warrant an uber-fan like you spending time teaching them.