The Buffalo Bills and Beer – A Match Made in Heaven

It’s a great time to be a Buffalo sports fan. As of today, the Bills are sitting pretty in first place in the AFC East with record of 5-1 and although it’s still early in hockey season, our Sabres are in first place in the Eastern Conference with an encouraging record of 6-0-1. An overwhelming sense of optimism is taking over our city. As the rest of the country looks to Obama or McCain for hope, we’re banking on Trent Edwards and Thomas Vanek to better our futures.

Bills Game TailgatingI live in this city, I see the fans and I feel the pride.

In fact, it is my belief that Buffalo is home to some of the most die-hard, passionate, incredible fans in the major leagues. Mark Yost of the Wall Street Journal doesn’t seem to agree however. Mr. Yost referred to our beloved Buffalo Bills as “a team that has struggled to control some of the worst-behaving fans in all of sports” in his October 14th report. Although there were no statistics or research to back up his claims, Mark Yost did attend the Monday night game against the Dallas Cowboys last season. In his October 16, 2007 piece following that game he wrote, “it was without a doubt, the drunkest crowd I’ve ever seen at any sporting event. Many fans stumbling to their seats just before kickoff were absolutely plastered.” Mr. Yost continued, “Walking through the parking lot before the game, I witnessed a scene all too common at NFL tailgates: home fans taunting the visitors with four-letter expletives.”

With so much else going on in the world, I have a hard time finding drunken people at a football game newsworthy – even if they’re swearing. If I were to sit down with Mr. Yost, I’d tell him that my friends and I attended that very same game and we all thought it was pretty awesome.

I know it’s disturbing but I’ve tailgated for hockey games too. At the Ice Bowl on New Years Day, drinking was a part of my “stay warm” strategy. In dire situations where tickets weren’t available, I’ve even gone so far as to have a few drinks at a bar to commemorate the occasion.

Sabres Ice Bowl Game

Maybe I’m too far removed from sporting event customs in other parts of the country or maybe I’ve been brainwashed by the hoards of unruly, intoxicated monsters that inhabit this city but I’ve always considered beer to be a part of the game day experience.

Please forgive my sarcasm. I don’t mean to get defensive but I can’t seem to understand why we sell so many multi-tap beer pumps, Ultimate Tailgating Grills, and Sippin’ Seat Flask Seat Cushions during football season if it’s such a bad idea get drunk at a game.

Perhaps I’m just one of the “worst-behaved fans” being cited? Regardless, I think that someone should buy Mr. Yost a beer this Sunday.

Go Bills!

[techtags: NFL, FOOTBALL, BUFFALO BILLS, TAILGATING, NHL, HOCKEY, BUFFALO SABRES, BEER, DRAFT BEER, KEG STANDS]

9 Comments

  • Hannah October 24, 2008 @ 9:17am

    Liz – We Buffalonians are the BEST fans out there – no team has more die-hard fans in the world. Mr. Yost is just jealous he doesn’t live in such a team-loving town. GO BILLS! GO SABRES! GO GO BUFFALO!!!

  • Rochelle October 24, 2008 @ 10:38am

    Liz – fantastic article!!! As a native Buffalonian I have not only inherited our love for unruly tailgating, but as my friend Lindsay put it, “all true sons and daughters of Buffalo share a magic-realist belief that the city’s fate and the Bills’ are intertwined”. Next time Mr. Yost comes to town we’ll have to get him riled up and take him to a tailgate and then see what he has to write, I bet it says something like, “that was the best time of my life.” 🙂

  • E-ROCK October 24, 2008 @ 10:40am

    i like beer.

    it tastes like beer.

    and beer tastes… DAMN GOOD AS HELL SON!!! YOU KNOW THIS!!

    WHERE MY FLASK SEAT CUSHION AT SON????

    YOU DID WORK ON THIS BLOG LIZ YOU GOOD AS HELL AT WRITIN YOU SHOULD DO IT FOR A JOB!!! YOU COULD MAKE A FEW DOLLAR

  • Justin October 24, 2008 @ 11:10am

    Liz is absolutelly correct. You can’t begin to appreciate a bills or sabres game unless you have followed the teams from the depths of despair… (early 90’s) until now! So, I think my fellow Bills fans will agree that even if we are unruly which, some would call passionate… we deserve it!

  • Hannah October 24, 2008 @ 11:16am

    Justin – passion – YES! That’s exactly it…. well put, my friend. Well put.

  • heidi October 24, 2008 @ 7:38pm

    Great blog Liz–Bills and Sabres are awesome–even when they lose they make people who would otherwise be mute, engage in conversation–whether it be foul- mouthed drunkin’ stuper , or not…Our fans, community, and teams are the greatest….As far as I can see, Yost needs a cocktail—and a clue.

  • John November 3, 2008 @ 4:50pm

    Ummm….Hannah, there are a few die-hard Saints’ fans at the door.

  • Hannah November 5, 2008 @ 12:38pm

    Haha – good thing I got that chain lock in working order. That should keep ’em at bay….

  • Heather November 11, 2008 @ 10:05am

    Umm… Do I know that girl in the picture? LOLOL!!!!

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