I’m not going to pretend that this city or its fans are without flaws. I’m quick to point out that some of the narratives those here rally around have become trite, and this fan base has done, if we’re being honest, some pretty stupid shit over the years. What city hasn’t? It’s still one filled with fans deserving of the championships that have tortuously eluded them. And you know what else? It’s a relevant city. And that’s why I can’t even bring myself to get pissed off over the vapid and uninspired verbal attacks dished about by Minneapolis media types leading up to the NFC Championship Game, like this Thursday rant dropped by 1500 ESPN’s Phil Mackey on Thursday:
— Phil Mackey (@PhilMackey) January 18, 2018
Forget the laughably incorrect assertions, because that’s not what this slander is actually about. This is nothing more than an example of a mostly irrelevant Minneapolis media in the overall sports landscape striking while the iron is hot.
If I say this incendiary thing about Philly, maybe I’ll get some blowback and people are going to know who Phil Mackey is, dammit.
Sorry, Phil. It’s not working. A radio host from the city playing against the Eagles in a championship game goes after the fans and it produces all of 41 retweets? That’s crickets. And I think that’s because it is hard to get mad at Minnesotans because they’re from Minnesota. It’s probably the most innocuous and sterile state there is. Usually, I’m here for a good takedown piece. But in this case, it’s just that I hear him out there trying to be an asshole, and I’m sure that he probably is, but I don’t…care.
Then, there’s this 570-word fart from the Star Tribune that offers tips on how all 138 Vikings fans planning to show up at the game tomorrow can survive the weekend:
We know that some of you are planning to go to Philadelphia for Sunday’s NFC Championship game — and we know that some of you are planning to live vicariously through or be very nervous for those those who are making the trip. It’s OK to be a little of both. One thing is pretty certain. Going to a game in Philadelphia is not like going to a game in Minnesota. That’s not a value judgment. Just fact.
That’s true. I agree in that this city actually seems to care about the game. That, or the Star Tribune is grossly out of touch with its audience’s appetite. Here’s a screen grab of its website on Friday afternoon:
It was two days before the Vikings’ biggest game in eight seasons and there’s not a SKOL, miracle, or pair of horns to be found. Anyway, the people of Minnesota SHOULD BE nervous. Just ask this guy. He’s a travel agent, so he knows.
— Chris O'Connell (@CoconnellFox29) January 17, 2018
The piece continues:
In the spirit of understanding Eagles fans a half-century later, we queried a couple of Twin Cities residents with Philadelphia roots about things that Minnesotans should and shouldn’t do.
This should be enlightening. Let’s take a look at some of these hot tips. First, some knowledge from former Philadelphia resident Christine Bonnes:
If you want to wear Vikings gear, get good seats. I’ve found people to be more respectful of opposing fans there.
Absolutely, Christine. Only sit with the affluent upper-crust fans who can afford the best seats. The middle-class and peons that fill out the rest of the stadium? Ew.
Regardless of where you sit, don’t taunt anyone! Cheer FOR your team, but not against the Eagles.
So, basically, don’t be an asshole to avoid being treated like an asshole? Profound.
Her advice is relatively tame compared to that of Julian Loscalzo who “runs baseball tours during the summer and wouldn’t think of bringing a batch of Minnesotans to Philadelphia.”
Cool job, Peter Pan. Let’s see what advice he has:
Don’t wear Purple unless you are Prince. (Note he is dead & you may get chance to meet him!)
Prince is (was?) overrated. To borrow from the article, that’s not a value judgment, it’s fact.
Don’t make eye contact or react if beer or insults thrown at you. But do wear green waterproof clothing.
I don’t really have a response to this. I do, however, wonder how many friends this guy has.
Don’t go – we wouldn’t!!
My takeaway? Enough of this shit. We need not defend ourselves any longer. When critics from other cities decry our isolated and often misunderstood transgressions over time, we can either be needlessly offended, or we can laugh and own it, play it up, and become DOGS about it. Tomorrow, in the spirit of the underdog and embracing the cliché, I urge everyone out there to disengage and drop the argument—you need not waste your breath—or keystrokes—arguing a case you cannot win. Get nasty and GO BIRDS.