“I told you we were going to do it. We won. We’re going all the way. That’s what I’M talking about,“ shouted and slurred the drunken fan outside the United Center after a recent Chicago Blackhawks Stanley Cup playoff victory.

Of course our local TV station was right there to capture that live bit of integrity and they put a microphone right in front of him to chronicle that pearl of fandom. Gotta love their pursuit of a story.

I DO hope that the viewing audience does not consider this guy to be representative of ALL Blackhawks fans.

Sure, we yell and scream and yes we support our team but, that brief sound bite irked me on three levels.

1) “I told you.” Dontcha just hate when people say this, not just in reference to sports, but in general. Dear inebriated idiot, actually you neither told me nor the enrapt viewing audience anything. Nor did the fact that you may have told anybody at all have anything to do with the outcome of the game. You are the kind of fan that really embarrasses our team.

2) “We won. We’re going all the way.” OK, this fan surely went “all the way” on alcohol consumption, but again, he had nothing to do with the victory in any way, shape or form. To say WE and put himself as a part of the collective victory collaboration is unfounded.

Yes, I know you are excited, but including yourself in the equation by say “WE won” as if you were a vital part of the accomplishment is annoying. The Blackhawks team won. They won. We cheered is all. Perhaps that makes me a language snob and if so, so be it.

3) Who invented the phrase, “That’s what I’M talking about?” (To get the full effect of the obnoxiousness of it you have to emphasize the “I” as if it is very important that we are reminded that it is always what YOU are talking about.)

Let me give you an example of how annoying this seemingly innocuous phrase can be. When I was coaching youth sports, my daughter’s 9-10 year old softball team was facing an opponent with “one of those” coaches. A young girl on their team got what was likely the first base hit of her life.

As she stood proudly on first base, “that coach” bellows, “That’s what I’M talking about.” The girl look mystified. Here she thought it was something good SHE had done, and now it was what ”that coach” was talking about. Get the picture? (BTW, all our coaches and team congratulated her in the traditional manner after the inning. “Nice hit.” “Way to go.”)

So, this is not to say that all fans are like that. The majority of fans are loud, without being boisterous; loyal without being obnoxious; passionate without being disrespectful.

In fact, after the Chicago Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup on Monday, a large throng of fans celebrated, for the most part, in as orderly a fashion as one could hope. See this photo to witness the festive scene.

wirgley cup fans

Oh, sure, there are some bad fans (like the one in this article’s cover photo).

But, TV people, please don’t give them a stage for their ignorance.
Focus on the good. Focus on the fun. Focus on the REAL fan.