There is no denying that we are a town that loves our football.
You can't go anywhere in the city in the fall without seeing Ravens purple somewhere...a bumper sticker...a flag....a jersey...a sign in a window. We just love our Ravens to bits and pieces.
It's more than just a game...it's a religion...it's an obsession...it's a way of life.
I've been to two games so far this year, the season opener on Sunday Night Football against the Bengals and last night's Thursday Night Football game against the Browns. Both were divisional games, and both games we won. Which is great because it allows us to sit atop our division early.
It's interesting, because I mentioned in one of my last posts about how awful the month of September has been for me, and it's funny because all of the bad stuff pretty much happened in the middle of the month, sandwiched between these two games. The Bengals game was the last bit of fun I had before the September sh*tshow, and as of yesterday my luck has seemingly taken a turn for the better. Not only the better, but the AWESOME.
So I wanted to go back and showcase my little slice of Ravensnation.
Week One - Ravens versus Bengals 7:00pm. Sunday Night Football
Ravenswalk was packed
Tailgating was in progress
Mockery was made of opposing team mascots
And as the frenzied masses approached the glorious gates of M&T Bank Stadium, each touching Johnny U's foot for good luck,
clad in their war gear and war paint,
the cheerleaders posed,
and as Oriole Park looked on in the distance,
the masses kept coming.
paying respects to The Golden Arm, who'd passed almost exactly ten years ago,
and the man who made it all possible in our city, who had passed only four days prior.
the signs went up,
and familiar faces showed up.
The band marched,
the flags were presented,
the bird took the field,
then the season began with a roar.
The most decorated Olympian of all time was welcomed by (arguably) the greatest middle linebacker of all time
the crowd was on their feet.
A flip of a coin,
and a snap of the ball,
the battle began.
We cheered the Ravens' success,
and celebrated the defeat of our arch-nemesis.
Kerri was with me, a rare moment when both of us were kid-free and together. Which is a treat in and of itself, even if a game is not involved. This alone is cause for celebration.
And, of course, we won. 13-44 to be exact.
Then the next couple craptastic weeks happened. But amidst the stress and annoyances, I got a text from my old buddy Emanuelle. She and I (and Kerri too) had worked together in the restaurant years before, and two years ago she had moved out to Hawaii, on the very same island as my friends Donna and Jamie.
She told me she would be home for a few weeks at the end of the month. We must get together. Even better, we decided to go to the Ravens game together in week four.
It was nice to have something to look forward to among my month of misery.
And thankfully the blessed day came--yesterday. My bad bad luck has apparently taken a turn (finally!) and some great, wonderful things are coming my way--including a visit from my sweet Emanuelle!
And as it always is when I hang out with this fun and freespirited friend of mine, the unexpected and wonderful happened.
So here we go...
Week Three - Ravens versus Browns 8:20pm. Thursday Night Football
Pre-celebratory glasses of champagne started our night off properly.
So excited to welcome my sweet friend back home after a two year absence!
And when it was time to head to the stadium, beers in styrofoam carry out cups...good friends don't let you leave empty-handed, afterall.
And the next thing I knew...it was suggested that we take "the limo" to the game.
(Life Lesson #987,234,835: when someone offers to provide limo service for you, don't ask how, where, why, or who. Just agree, smile politely and say, "well that's a lovely idea, thanks for offering. Now we won't have to pay for parking." The End.)
Don't ask how. I'm still not entirely sure myself. But somehow a limo showed up.
And it was just for us.
Well, us and our styrofoam cups... (klassie!)
And as we walked through Camden Yards, en route to M&T Bank, we stopped for an Orioles photo op,
oh, and the actual Oriole BIRD, moonlighting as a Ravens fan.
And as we got closer and closer to the gates of the Bank, Manee got a little overwhelmed with all the familiar sights and sounds of being home.
The game kicked-off in similar fashion, with fireworks and fanfare.
And Baltimore was happy to welcome it's ex-pat home.
And once again, the Ravens won. 16-23.
The Ravens are 3-1, after playing a grueling 4 games in 17 days. Comparatively, I'm finally on the upswing after a grueling 3 weeks of life craziness.
It's so nice to know that despite years going by, motherhood, and moves of more than 5000 miles, I can still turn my brain off and have a few hours of FUN enjoying our Ravens, one of the common bonds that brings us all together, with these girls NOW