So last night Stanford’s had its holiday party on the Plaza at the hot new Zocalo restaurant and nightspot…
Take it from me it’s THE place to be on weekend nights now. Pretty ladies ages 25 to 45, sharp guys, plus it’s a money place. Nice.
The food is good, too and there’s a large bar area. Anyway, I sat with my brother, Jeff, his girlfriend and my long time pal Joel, a manager at Stanford’s. We grew up together and Joel was explaining how great the NEW CHIEFS are.
"Boy, if we’d had Kyle Orton a few weeks back, we’d be in the playoffs. Beating Green Bay (which may have cost me some nice dough that I’ve waited all year for) was so sweet. The Chiefs proved who was the best team in the NFL."
So we got into it. I explained that I’d been a Chiefs fan since I was a little boy. Around 1963 or 1964. Lenny THE COOL Dawson and Otis Taylor were my childhood heros along with Muhammed Ali. That I lived and died for this team for 40 years – practically my whole life. That I almost never missed a game and bought season tickets when I got back from LA in 1990 – the whole nine yards.
And what did they give me? HEARTACHE.
Sure there was the Super Bowl win in 1970. As I’ve written, I went to the parade for the team and my hero Otis Taylor wouldn’t sign my hat and pushed me away from him on the stage. I was a kid and it hurt.
But that didn’t stop me from loving the Kansas City Chiefs.
In LA I would PAY the bartender to switch to the Chiefs games on cable. We got some games due to the Raiders being in LA back then. Or I would get up at 9 AM Sunday to drive to the sports bar and make sure the 10 AM game was KC . It was a two-hour drive which was tough after those long LA Saturday nights.
Oh yeah, I bought in big.
I remember in Vegas around 1993 or 1994 being proud when guys in the gym saw my Chiefs T-shirt and asked, "Wow, you ever meet Joe Montana or Marcus Allan?" I told them not only had I met them, I kinda was friends with both of them.
A cab driver out there recited the entire 1969 Chiefs line-up for me and I gave him a $40 tip. Yep, I was hooked…Chiefs forever.
When they lost a big game I got headaches and it really hurt for days. Later I got into a business relationship as President and Chair of the Red Friday rallys here. I was close with the Marty Schottenheimer teams of the 90’s and hung out with the top guys like Neil Smith, Derrick Thomas, Marcus and Joe. Fun times, fun nights.
Still they always let me down come January. Every single time.
Anyway, so Joel got on my ass for dumping on the Chiefs.
"Hey, if you don’t like the Chiefs, why don’t you and Jeff move away," he said.
My brother had changed me on the Chumps in 2003 – the UNDEFEATED SEASON – 13-3. Nevermind that it was supposed to be 16-0. The day before the Colts play-off game Jeff had my younger brother fly to Vegas and bet against KC.
He knew I wouldn’t take our pool money and bet against my team. And I was pissed.
I said, "Now I can’t enjoy the game." But reality hit, we ARE NOT GREAT. We always lose when it matters. And overall we’re terrible. We are the Cleveland Browns, yesterdays news. It hit me hard. From then on – and Jeff was right the Chiefs got killed – I became a non Chumps fan.
I began to see the truth, that it’s a business. The players only care about each other and themselves.
ALMOST NONE OF THEM GIVE A CRAP ABOUT OUR CITY. THEY DON’T LIVE HERE, MAYBE ONE OR TWO.THEY ARE MERCENARIES FROM OTHER CITIES. THERE’S NEVER A KC GUY ON THE TEAM…ALMOST NEVER.
Oh yeah, the red-haired kid Kerry Reardon who was an average player. The best players on the team are predominantly of color while most fans are white. The two are not usually pals in real life. And most of the big stars always move away the second their careers here end.
KC is just a big locker room to these guys.
Again, there are rare exceptions. Dawson is the biggest, but if Lenny had $10 million would he have stayed? Remember, he got the top sports TV/Radio gigs here which pay pretty good money. And the few others who stayed didn’t get much from us – Otis Taylor, Neil Smith, Ed Budde, Ted McNight.
Having said all that, boy it sure would be nice to win another Super Bowl. Even in my disgust, deep down, I still have a soft spot for our Kansas City Chiefs. God Help Me.