The First Time – NFL Edition

Sunday rolled around and The Good Man and I had something special on the agenda. We had a date with Candlestick Park and a dance with the San Francisco 49ers football team.

The Good Man had attended professional football games in the past, but I never had. I’ve spent much time inside Candlestick, but it was back in the late 90’s, watching my beloved San Francisco Giants get brutalized. The Giants moved to their new yard in 2000 and I hadn’t been to Candlestick since.

I wondered how the ‘Stick had held up over the past eleven years. The answer? About how you’d expect.

Photo by Karen Fayeth, Copyright 2011

Once upon a time I was a huge 49ers fan (going back to living in New Mexico where they were my team of choice). But over the past decade they kept stomping on my heart over and over, so I had to break up with them.

But this year…with their shiny 8-1 record…I might have been woo’d back to their side.

I think I’ve finally worked out my issues with this guy (that’s the long suffering quarterback, first round draft pick, Alex Smith).

Photo by Karen Fayeth, Copyright 2011

I gave up on him when I kept shouting at my television “THROW THE DAMN BALL ALREADY!!!” and he wouldn’t throw the ball. And then he’d get clobbered.

On Sunday, he threw the ball. Oh he threw it, indeed. And he ran it, and he handed it off and did everything a calm, cool quarterback should do.

Photo by Karen Fayeth, Copyright 2011

Oh, hello Kendall Hunter. Welcome to the end zone.

Photo by Karen Fayeth, Copyright 2011

This morning, the local sports radio show keeps talking about the amazing atmosphere at the ‘Stick on Sunday.

It was crazy.

Isn’t it always like that?

Photo by Karen Fayeth, Copyright 2011

For the non-baseball fans, I hear a lot of talk about how baseball is so slow, there’s waiting around, blah blah blah.

You know what? There is a lot of waiting around in football too.

Photo by Karen Fayeth, Copyright 2011

But there is an awful lot more blood in football. Yikes.

Photo by Karen Fayeth, Copyright 2011

I guess that tends to happen when your whole intent, play by play, is smashing into very large people. Our seats were great and I sure did see a lot of men crash into other men. Sometimes I had to close one eye and look away. That’s usually when the guys around me would shout “yeeeah!”

Boys. Hmph.

Photo by Karen Fayeth, Copyright 2011

Football is a crazy sport. A crazy, fun, outrageous, holy cow YEAH baby kind of sport.

In short…I loved it. Seeing it live was really something spectacular.

All photos by Karen Fayeth and subject to the Creative Commons license found in the far right column of this page.

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  • Alan

    I’m glad you’re finally starting to see the Alex Smith that we University of Utah fans enjoyed in ’03 and ’04. In all my bias, I think now you have a real coach who allows Smith to be a real QB. You actually have an O-line and some targets now.

    Also, count me as an old school ‘9ers fan as well. I grew up cheering for Montana, Rice, and Young as if they played right here in SLC. I too lost interest once they went from one of the best run NFL franchises to one of the worst seemingly overnight. Bandwagon fan? Absolutely, but I’ve really enjoyed watching their success again. It just feels right.

    On another football note, I’ll be one Utahn cheering hard for your Aggies when they come to Provo this weekend. I don’t hold out any hope for them winning–or even keeping it close, but know that I’ll be sending my Utah Ute karma their way.

    • Karen Fayeth

      Alan – I think what frustrated me the most is that I KNOW that Smith is a good QB. I have no doubt. So who was that guy getting clobbered over and over (and over!) every game?

      I think that Harbaugh really understands poor Alex, and that’s made a huge difference.

      Plus, as you noted, having a good O line helps a lot too.

      By the by, don’t get too emotionally attached to an Aggies win. They are TERRIBLE. But any karma you can send so that they simply don’t embarrass themselves is MUCH appreciated.

  • Ur bro

    Don’t know if it is still the case but one summer at NMSU I got put in the athletes dorm. Those Aggie football players smoked so much reefer that desert animals in T or C were getting a second hand high. I can’t imagine how they could run after all that.

    Then there were the Native Americans in our same building that gathered regularly to beat the drums and partake of other mystical chemical combinations of various cactus plants and mushrooms. All of them were well supplied by my suitemate who put himself through business school running a “ahem” alternative pharmaceutical supply business.

    • Karen Fayeth

      Big Bro – yeah, you and sissy got to have some…erm….unique dorm experiences over in Alumni Hall.

      I was relegated to the austere sounding Women’s Residence Center (it’s not called that anymore, by they way, and it’s gone co-ed).

  • Natalie

    I was a fan back in the day with Montana, Rice, although I didn’t really like Steve Young so much but there and some really great games. Being as I grew up in the bay area, I was always a 49r’s fan and wouldn’t be caught dead across the bay. Over the years … I’ve wandered… Now I’m a Saints fan because of Darren Sproles (used to be a Chargers fan but they can suck it… mgmt jerks.) and I do like Brees.

    There’s nothing like going to Candlestick Park. (Is it still called that?) It’s always cold, always a little windy, and that’s perfect football to me.


    • Karen Fayeth

      Nat – I had a really hard time with Steve Young after Montana. Ok, he got results, but what a jerko. And that Steve Young run the ball then slide (or really the “don’t hit me” crumple) dove me batty.

      Young calls into to a local sports radio program once a week. I can’t stand to listen to him. Arrogant as heck and still pretty much a jerk.

      Can’t hate on Brees. I can see why you are a Saints fan!

      And yes, after many various names, it’s back to being called Candlestick Park. Or, as the marketing folks have branded it, the ‘Stick.

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