Commonwealth Journal


January 11, 2014

The pain (and joy) of being a Jets fan

Somerset — January 12, 1969. I was 8 years old and ended that day on top of the world. My favorite football team, the New York Jets, had shocked the experts and won Super Bowl III.

That was 45 long — very long — years ago.

And still I wait for the ecstasy of that day to return.

You see, being a Jets fan has been trying to say the least. As we head toward Super Bowl 48 (I can’t even do Roman numerals that high, for goodness sakes), I’m still waiting on the Big Green to return to the Big Show.

Oh sure, we’ve flirted with greatness.

A year after winning the Super Bowl, the Jets made their final postseason appearance in the Joe Namath era and lost a heart-breaking AFL playoff game to the eventual world champion Kansas City Chiefs.

The Jets didn’t see another playoff game until 1981, when they lost a gut-wrenching wildcard game to the Buffalo Bills. (Somewhere Bills fan extradonaire Jon Burlew is smiling).

In the strike-truncated 1982 season, we were one game away from the Super Bowl, after pulling off upsets of Cincinnati and the Raiders in the AFC ”tournament.” But in the finale, the Dolphins beat the Jets in a monsoon at the Orange Bowl.

You get the idea. The ‘70s, ‘80s and most of the ‘90s were wrought with frustration.

We got a taste of hope when Bill Parcells came in to coach the Jets and led them to the AFC championship in 1998.

But we lost.

More disappointment ensued.

Then current coach Rex Ryan came aboard and there were two straight trips to the AFC title game.

And two more losses.

And for the last three years, we have been utterly mediocre.

Which has been par for the course for most of the last 45 years.

So why am I still a Jets fan?

Perhaps the loyalty was etched on this day, 45 years ago.

You see, I was told by everyone that Namath and the Jets had no chance against the awe-inspiring Baltimore Colts. My dad was kind ... “Don’t expect too much,” he would say.

But I believed. And as it turned out, Namath and the Jets were magical.

So whenever I get discouraged — either at the Jets, or even sometimes in day to day life — I think of the courage and determination it took for those 21-point underdogs to topple the Colts on Jan, 12, 1969.

Sometimes we can beat the odds and set the world on its ear.

Broadway Joe did it.

And, for one, I have confidence that one of these days I’ll be able to smile again on Super Bowl Sunday.

Even if it takes awhile.

Text Only
  • mug shot.jpg Batmania arrives at Somernites Cruise

    What excellent timing. Last week, the real Batman (that would be Adam West), the real Robin (that would be Burt Ward) and the real Catwoman (that would be Julie Newmar) converged on the Comic-Con in San Diego to promote the long-awaited DVD/Blu-Ray release of the beloved Batman ABC-TV series, which ran from 1966-68.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug shot.jpg Stanziano left behind a grand legacy

    It should be no surprise that Mark Stanziano was an Oakland Raiders fan. Back in the day, Raiders owner Al Davis always looked for the good in a football player— regardless of their sometimes less-than-sparkling reputation.

    July 4, 2014 1 Photo

  • The great Hobby Lobby debate
    It’s a common joke among those of us in the libertarian set that liberals are pro-choice when it comes to reproductive rights — and anti-choice when it comes to everything else.
    Rarely is that borne out so much than in the Hobby Lobby contraceptives case.

    July 4, 2014

  • 002 CHRIS NEW MUG.jpg Without the past, there is no present

    June 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug shot.jpg Political correctness is running amok

    Once again, political correctness is running amok. This time, it’s the bureaucrats in Washington trying to force Daniel Snyder to change the name of his National Football League team.

    June 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug shot.jpg 20 years since the fall of a national hero

    If you were a child of the 70s, you probably were a fan of O.J. Simpson. The angular running back with smooth-as-silk moves and power to boot was the first African-American athlete who really transcended racial barriers.

    June 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug shot.jpg A little guidance on the safety of our teens
    If you’re the parent of a teen, there’s good news. Your child is less likely to drink and smoke these days, and less likely to fight at school. Unfortunately, they’re also likely to text behind the wheel when they reach driving age, and they’re much more immersed in video games, the Internet and their handy smartphone.
    These results were gleaned from a test of 13,000 U.S. high school students last spring. This survey has been conducted since 1991.

    June 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Coal can’t be king in Kentucky forever

    “We’re going to be screwed no matter what,” a mechanic in Wooton, Ky., told me last year. We were talking about the coal industry and how it might be regulated in the future.

    June 13, 2014

  • 002 CHRIS NEW MUG.jpg Grads leave high school well-prepared for life Tonight, the current crop of seniors from my high school alma mater receive their diplomas. ‘Tis the season for graduations, and Somerset High School will be saying goodbye to the class of 2014. Next weekend, Pulaski County High School and Southwestern High School will do likewise.

    May 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug shot.jpg Grimes needs to take a firm stand on Obama Alison Lundergan Grimes is in a really tough spot. First of all, she’s squaring off against a GOP juggernaut in longtime U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell this fall. And, secondly, she finds herself linked to the most unpopular president ever in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Instead of taking a firm stand on her feelings on President Oba

    May 22, 2014 1 Photo

News Live
AP Video
Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide