You’re a 49ers fan, and you’re upset.
Your work colleague is a 49ers fan, and he or she is upset, too.
Your kid’s CYO coach is a 49ers fan, and he or she is upset, too.
Your neighbor is a Raiders fan, and he’s laughing his butt off at you, your work colleague and your kid’s CYO coach.
Such is life in 49ersdom these days.
We gather at the ‘Jock Blog’ — a phrase I love, since most of us “on-air jockeys” were so not jocks, we became radio personalities — to commiserate.
Given the dire state of the 49ers, given seeing the once-proud kingdom in ruins, given Jed York’s now-legendary and profoundly depressing 2017 proclamation, “I own this football team. You don’t dismiss owners. I’m sorry that’s the facts, and that’s the case”, what are we all to do?
I am here to present options, some realistic, some not-so-realistic:
— You could stop being a 49ers fan, and adopt another team: I mean, if you want. But to me? Naw, you can’t do that. The whole point of being a fan of a team is to attach yourself to a club, to its colors, to its history, to its geography. The joy is in the struggle. How can you rejoice when Joe Montana leads the 49ers to Super Bowl XVI without first enduring the 2-14 seasons of 1978 and 1979? Besides, suddenly adopting another team has always seemed suspect, like someone who gets really into a band all of a sudden, or someone who suddenly loses a lot of weight and acts like it’s no big deal.
— You could abandon pro football entirely, until the 49ers get good again: This is mildly intriguing. There are plenty of ways to get through the sports year without the NFL. You have baseball ‘til Halloween. You have college football from September to January. You have the NBA from Halloween ‘til mid-summer. It can be done. Plus, it frees up your Sundays. And your Mondays. And your Thursdays. There’s something to be said for this option.
— You could read books, both fiction and non-fiction, in the exact 3-hour blocks the 49ers play on Sundays: Naw. What do we look like, a bunch of people who want to better ourselves? Next option.
— You could hold your nose, stay a 49ers fan, and pray Jed gets lucky with his next hire: This is the most likely option, sports fans. You don’t want to stop being a 49ers fan. What would you do with your Ray-Ray Armstrong gamer in the closet, then? You don’t want to abandon the NFL entirely. What would you have to talk about at awkward meet-ups in the work restroom? You don’t want to read books instead of watching football. That would make you some kind of bookworm.
Instead, you plunge ahead and see who Jed hires, with the full knowledge that it will likely be the wrong hire, because he hasn’t hired a football operations guy to make the hire. You plunge ahead knowing that it’s more fun to gripe and kvetch about the 49ers with all your fellow 49ers fans, than it is to be the guy who boycotts the conversation. You plunge ahead because it’s what we do as sports fans. We do things that make no sense, that invite punishment and make us gluttons for pain.
Ain’t sports grand?