Waiting for Buffalo Bills to make comeback some day


One of the things that my family bonds over more than anything else is football. It’s such a huge part of American culture today that I’m sure most people can share a story at least somewhat similar to mine.

On the same day that we give thanks for all that we have and commemorate one of the first feasts to take place on American soil, we watch football, right?

I’ve heard it said that football players are like modern-day gladiators, and I think the way many Americans go crazy about the game and the atmosphere at a football stadium on game day prove that to be a fair comparison to the old Roman spectacle.

If anyone’s crazy about football it’s the Joseph family. Don’t look at me; I was born into it.

My parents would go to games all the time in the ‘80s and ‘90s with my Uncle Keith and Aunt Diane. They were at the largest comeback in NFL history when the Bills rallied to beat the Houston Oilers in 1993.

The extended family Super Bowl parties were also something I unfortunately missed, but I’ve gotten to hear all about those too. The Bills went to the Super Bowl four years in a row in the early ‘90s and lost each one.

Still, every year was THE year; the whole family could just feel it. If the Bills were winning, everybody had to keep the seat that they had in the living room, and God forbid somebody mess with that good juju.

The Bills’ first Super Bowl loss in 1990 will forever live in infamy and would set a disappointing precedent for the next 26 years (and let’s hope not eternity) when Bills kicker Scott Norwood’s potentially game-winning field goal attempt missed wide right and handed the New York Giants the win.

Tears were shed at the first ever Joseph family Super Bowl party. According to my mom, people helped clean up in near-silence and left.

The Bills left the losers in each of their next three consecutive Super Bowl appearances and none of those scores were nearly as close.

Unable to cope with any more heartbreak, my parents decided it was time to start a family and in 1995 I was born. A couple years later as a little kid, I decided that because I liked pirates that I was a Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan. My parents couldn’t figure out where they had gone wrong in raising me. It was particularly amusing that the Buccaneers went on to win the Super Bowl in 2003 and my parents couldn’t believe my luck.

Of course I still like pirates, but I now keep my seafaring interests separate from my football interests and suffer with the rest of the family as a Bills fan. When I say suffer, I mean it.

The Bills have really sucked some years and we haven’t made the playoffs this millennium. But I love that our sad plight as Bills fans is a pastime our entire extended family shares and continues to bring us together year after year.

As early as it is, they’re actually turning the season around this year. I won’t get my hopes up just yet, but the Bills did shut out the Patriots last week in New England, and nobody has crushed Bills fans’ dreams like the Patriots over the years.

Still, no matter how things turn out this season, next year will be THE year yet again, and nobody is convincing my family otherwise.


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