After this past week, I am going to drop the sarcasm and the "monkey talk" and talk about something that I consider near and dear to my fandom heart.
Being a "classy" fan.
What is a classy fan? Well, in my opinion, first you must love your team. You might show that love by being critical or being a homer or somewhere in between. You may be a stat expert or just love watching them play. There are many ways to love your team.
Second, you can talk smack, but you don't let it dominate your conversation. I regularly call the Dallas Cowboys the "Cowgirls" but when talking with those fans I don't say it every comment/sentence. Basically, the smack talk is in the name of fun more than anything.
Third, and I consider this most important, treat others, especially the opposing fanbase, with respect. This is by far the toughest thing to do. There are fans all over who are just downright evil and crude in their comments, and it can be very hard not to respond in kind. You give the other team the proper accolades and/or sympathies. And this rule applies x100 if you are with them in person. Heck, I'm married to a Rams fan, and we love each other more than life itself! (I did have to stop bleating at her when we beat the Rams, but it's well worth the sacrifice.)
I'm sure there are other ways to be "classy", and I expect to be told that, but for me it boils down to one thing: RESPECT.
Now, why am I writing this? Quite frankly, I'm concerned. Look at the Saints game. To those of you who treated the Saints fans who were there rudely, it was wrong of you. I see comments about major rivals that make my blood curl. From 49er fans. This concerns me. And anyone who wishes injury on ANYONE is wrong.
Now please, before you smack me down for this, I am not talking about the "smack" talk. That is expected and is part of the fun. I'm talking about the downright rude comments. I try to ignore what may be offensive to me but "borderline" since I tend to be more sensitive. Vicious name-calling. Accusations about team loyalties or bringing political views into the fantalk.
One of things I prided myself on being a 49er fan is that 49er fans are considered "classy" fans. However, I must ask this question: Are we still a classy fanbase?
I would honestly like to see opinions on this, even from our rivals if they read this. I don't want accusations, pointing of fingers, calling people out, etc. This is not intended for that. And if things go that route, I'll just delete this fanpost and be done with it. (One exception: you are free to call me out.) I want to honestly know and have a discussion on this, including the points I am sure to have missed.
Thank you. This is a fantastic site, and I am PROUD to be a 49er fan.