American loves football but Pittsburghers love their Steelers more than anything in the world. Ok! Maybe it’s too exaggerated. Of course someone loves their spouse, children, parents, or family first. But let’s take a look.
1. The first time I flew to Pittsburgh, I saw this statue of a football player standing next to Gen. Washington in the airport. Yes, Gen. Washington the founding father, the first President. “Who is that?” I asked my husband in shock. “Oh, that’s Franco Harris. He made…” explained my husband while I buried in my thought: if this is in my country (note: Indonesia), this is a big NO; to put a sport player no matter how legendary he was/is equally with the founding father. I can picture demonstrations around the country. “Only in Pittsburgh!” added my husband who still saw a trace of disbelief on my face.
2. You will see “You’re in Steelers Country” signs almost at every corner in the city; from the airport to downtown to Strip District to the malls to places of interests; and of course around their stadium and people’s yards. It’s everywhere!
3. I think 1 in 5 people in the city are wearing Steelers t-shirt, polo, hat, or other attributes, from babies to elderly people. Even when you sit in a plane inbound/outbound Pittsburgh, you will see someone with their Steelers attribute. I remember one day when we were waiting for our luggage at DFW airport, I heard a girl whispered to her mother while looking at a boy with a Steelers t-shirt, “He’s a Steelers fan.” Yes, you’re right, girl! We were in the same plane from Pittsburgh. There’s also a guy at our church who wore his Steelers t-shirt every single Sunday during football season. He also liked to show pictures of the players from his cell phone to my husband.
4. At every Christmas Party with my husband’s extended family, Steelers stuffs were always a hit during Chinese Gift Exchange game. I’m pretty sure it went the same at other houses.
5. What else… hmm… like my sister-in-law said, “We treat them (the players) like God.” Win or lose.
We went to Denver last summer and I don’t recall seeing anyone with Broncos t-shirt even when we strolled along 16th Street Mall. And they just won a 2016 Super Bowl! Also here in Dallas when Cowboys just had their best season (at least that’s what I thought). I still rarely see people with their Cowboys t-shirt unless on the day they played. No wonder Steelers don’t need cheerleaders. Their fans’ rooting are more than enough!
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