04 February 2011
Hello there, everyone.
I'm writing this proposal in hopes of having a new holiday created. I'm not talking about one where you get a day off from work or anything (though banks and government services will anyhow), nor am I proposing anything that is a thinly veiled vote-grab (I'm looking at you, Family Day). No, I'm proposing a day that encourages us to step hack for a second and think "Hey, maybe I don't actually give a shit about the (blank) I've recently begun to vehemently support. Wow, I look like an idiot."
I'm proposing Bandwagon Day.
Fittingly, I think it should occur on the first Sunday of February, or whatever Sunday the Super Bowl happens to be on that year. I have chosen this date from a pool of many since I feel it creates more bandwangoneers than any other.
Suggested Bandwagon Day events may include the following:
-Questioning the person with the clearly new Steelers hat to name five players on the team and what their stadium is called. When they stand there, jaw agape, stammering for a n andwer, the actual fan may point and laugh, and also slap their drink out of their hand like in so many movies from the 80s.
-"Girlfirend Round-up". All females at a particular bar/house party wearing team merchandise are blindfolded, spun around, and put in front of a TV to point at which team they're "cheering for". The trick here is that the TV's colour is turned to black and white. Good luck!
-"The Silent Treatment" During the first quarter (or whatever , I don't know this shit), non-bandwagoneers secretly agree to show no emotion or go "OOOOOH!" or "What the hell was that?". If something happens that is worthy of an outburst, and the bandwagoneer doesn't make a peep, they are to be taken outside and have their new-still-with-Sportchek-tags jersey is to be filled with snow and possibly pinecones. This, too, is to be done in absolute silence, for effect.
Make up your own holiday traditions!
Bandwagon Day isn't just about football (which, I would like to point out, features feet connecting with a ball, what, four times? That's like calling F-1 racing "tirechange"). You can celebrate anyone and anything relating to bandwagon hopping.
Do you remember who won the World Cup last year? You have their scraf and a commerative vuvuzela! Still don't remember? Big fan!
-"Hey, have you heard of the new band The Black Keys/Mumford & Sons? I'm such a huge fan."
-2009 edition: "Have you heard of Kings of Leon?" (At least the band admits Only By The Night is a shill record. Three chords + pouty, whiny singing voice = bandwagon bait!)
-"OMG Big Bang Theory is TEH funniest EVAR lololol i'm such a nerrrrrd." - I cannot wait for the day when OG nerds are the awkward, hidden, pasty bunch we are accustomed to being. You see girls with t-shrits that say "I heart nerds" on it. You think it's cute and funny and everything, but try actually entering the nerd world, sweetheart. Go to FanExpo. Go to a comic shop on tabletop games night. Stand in line for a World of Warcraft expansion. Watch your nerd infatuation fly right out the goddamn window.
There's a whole book I could probably write about that last one.
Maybe my outlook on the whole bandwagon thing is a little crass, but I think it can be explained by looking at where I'm from. Toronto is the biggest collection of bandwagon-jumpers on the face of the planet. Proof is found in the Blue Jays. Go to opening day, then go to the second game. Opening Day is such a fiasco that the actual fans tend to prefer to stay home and watch on TV, while the more-money-than-brains Torontonians make the scene. Show up at the second game and you could probably throw grenades in every direction from your seat and not hit anyone. Might spook the team, though.
Look at the other teams, though! The Raptors, as I understand, are not all that great. Maybe they're awful, I don't know, I don't watch basketball. But I do know they're not hurting for money. Toronto FC! Jesus, what a great idea that was. They could never win a game and they're still going to print money. Both the Raptors and TFC are owned, however, by Maple Leaf Sports + Entertainment. There is no bigger moneymaking machine in the NHL than the Maple Leafs, proving that Toronto fans are either too hopeful, rich, idiots, or any combination thereof.
Growing up outside of a major sports market, it's hard not to get caught up in the fanaticism. When I was little I had a Leafs jersey - everyone did - and when the Raptors showed up on the scene I got a logo hat. To be fair, it had a dinosaur on it, which was very likely my motivation.
So, to the people who actually follow football and know the stats and have ancient, filthy team merch that you believe to be lucky, have an awesome Sunday. I don't get football and don't even want to try to do so, but good for you lot. The heavy drinking and inhaling of chicken wings and obscene amounts of salty snacks? That I get.
To everyone who has a new Steelers/Green Bay jacket and knows as much about football as I do, go back to Foot Locker right now and make a return, please. Go to the bar and hang with the fans, it's okay to do that. You don't have to dress the part. Go with an open mind and attempt to learn something, if you really want to. Or get drunk and piss yourself, whatever makes a successful Sunday for you.
Jesus Christ, can you imagine if the Leafs won the Stanley Cup? I mean, shit.
Happy Bandwagon Day!