Where I Came From: How I Became A Cal Fan

This post is sponsored by EA Sports NCAA Football 2011

When we initially made the jump from Blogsome.com to the SBN servers, the cries were massive and immediate.  "Sell outs!"  "Capitalists!"  "I used to read you guys when you were an underground, indie blog, but now that it's all about the big money contracts, I'm moving on to BearsWithFangs!" 

And it's true, it's true, we are sell outs.  We will sell ourselves for the highest bidder.  Since we try to donate most, if not all, of the money we receive to the California Marching Band, we can't wait to sell out.  So, when we were approached by the SBN higher upz, saying that EA Sports was ready, willing, and able to pay us real American cash money to write some posts, we initially asked for Chinese RMB.  Why not go straight to the source, right?  Our negotiation tactic having failed, we still jumped at the chance.  They have a new football game coming out soon and, I guess, wanted to try to appeal directly to the fan.  I hear we have some Cal fans around here.  That's what I hear.  Today is the first post of the series, a discussion of where we came as a Cal fan.  So, let's get this party started right.  And hey if you want to donate to the California Marching Band, we ain't gonna stop you.

Well, like most Cal fans, I find failure to be the sine qua non of any real enjoyable existence.  I've tried succeeding before.  I've actually succeeded before.  Rarely.  On occasion.  It sucked.  Not gonna lie.  It ain't got nothing on the exhilarating sting of failure!  I was so done with succeeding by the time I got to Cal.  Really, aren't we all?

So, when I got to Cal and found out that we were mediocre, at best, my heart was a flutter.  Cal sporting teams.  Just like me!  You can imagine my anger when our first game, against Rutgers, was a 21-7 victory.  Fortunately, it was a fluke.  Over the next 3 years, Cal won like 8 games, including our now-legendary 1-10 2001 season.  It was easily the greatest time of my life.  I often look back on that era with a video montage, accompanied by "Higher And Higher" from this classic Wet Hot American Summer training montage:


What's that?  LaShaun Ward dropped another pass.  Thanks, Cal fandom! 

Then, disaster!  Coach Tedford arrived in what can only be described as The Chariot Of Glorious Laughing Jade.  Stepping down from his Chariot to the attendants keeping his feet from touching real ground, Coach Tedford waved his magic(k) wand and ruined everything!  Now, all of a sudden, we were succeeding!  And on a national level.  But it was too late.  Having been to nearly every home game for three years, I was already hooked.

I was hooked on the atmosphere of games.  I was hooked on the ebb and flow of a Berkeley college football Saturday.  I was hooked on the energy of dozens of thousands of fans eating, walking, cheering, and just having an awesome time.  Berkeley has a unique location tucked away in the densely packed urban East Bay.  While other schools have gamedays that require long traveling time and tailgating in remote locations, you are partying in the same places you live.  The density creates a giant campus-wide party that cannot be unmatched. 

Some people are Cal fans for the love of the sport.  I'm there for the love of the party.  So, that's my lame and wildly uninteresting story.  What's yours?  Why did you become a Cal fan?  Extra points to non-Cal fans who explain how the awesomeness that is CGB turned them into Cal fans.  GO BEARS!

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