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Baby Boomer Adopts The Seattle Seahawks

Dave And A Sports Fan Family.

DaveDaughtersThe distance between Seattle and Portland shrinks every fall Sunday.

So does the gap between big brother to the north and little brother during the NFL season.

Sports do that.

Harmony grows between the two cities with each win, whether the comeback on Houston that seemed ordained by football gods, or the expected victory over Jacksonville the week before.

The Seahawks did that.

Call it good marketing or media overload, just add the truth: Everyone loves a winner and Seattle is loveable. It’s a mix of host cities with teams the Seahawks will beat on their way to their second Super Bowl title.

Sections of gray cement architecture match Rust Belt opponents. Gleaming towers reflect southern cities pushing steel and glass higher than the one before. Like a reunion where only your favorite people show up, Seattle feels like family and the Seahawks a golden boy everyone loves.

Smacking last year’s golden boy from San Francisco helps.

The lure to Seattle for a home game doesn’t shorten the three hour drive from Portland. It doesn’t change the thirty dollar parking or ninety five dollar game ticket either.

But a five minute walk from car to stadium and another five to your seat is a bargain for any major league event. The Pacific Northwest might be known for every outdoor activity ever invented, but standing in long line after long line isn’t one of them.

Portland fan Dave Ause drove up to watch the Jacksonville game with his daughters Christine, Katie, and Allison. The girls had never been to an NFL game, but they’re fan enough to pick teams in a weekly pool. They all left the stadium in new Seahawk gear.

The National Football League does that.

Mr. Ause, a fellow baby boomer and a local construction chief, knows good planning from bad.

ME: How was the overall game experience?

DAVE: Perfect. I’ve been to games in the Kingdome and that never felt right. I’ve been to Raider games in Oakland. CenturyLink Field is the best.

ME: You work on big construction projects. You read blueprints. How does Seattle feel as a sports town?

DAVE: It’s built big enough for a weekend trip. I’ve been up on the train before. The only downside is the ride back. It stops everywhere. It kills the post-game buzz when you wonder if you’re ever getting home. Driving worked better this time.

ME: I went to a Raider game when they played in LA and a few Philadelphia game when the Eagles played in Veterans Stadium. Were there any fights in the stands? A jail in the stadium?

DAVE: Seahawk fans are rowdy. They bring the noise, maybe the best twelfth man around. But it’s about the game, not someone next to you wearing an opponent’s jersey that needs a beatdown.

ME: You hear about alcohol related incidents at NFL games, stabbing deaths outside MLB fields. What’s the Seattle vibe?

DAVE: Alcohol monitors in red coats cruise the crowd. One woman spilled her food after drinking too much. The monitors checked on her. Because they approached the right way, things didn’t escalate. It’s well maintained and orderly and it keeps the game in focus, not your safety.

ME: So it didn’t go Raider game where the guy painted up in silver and black didn’t pummel the alcohol monitor?

DAVE: No. My daughters and I had brunch, saw the game, and walked on the pier afterward.

ME: How about the traffic jam leaving. We always hear about Seattle traffic.

DAVE: None. In and out.

Mr. Ause’s experience at a Seahawk game is the sort of welcome mat every NFL city wants to roll out. Add his Hawk-fan daughters to the mix and Seattle feels like the perfect place for a team of destiny.

One last question.

ME: What’s the biggest difference in the Seahawks?

DAVE: Paul Allen. He gets it.

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About David Gillaspie
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