Buc’s Make Tampa Proud … While Others Cry Out Loud

By Andy Kriege, YSN

The Super Bowl is one of the few remaining “collective experiences” left in America. It is the one day out of the year when it is a pretty good bet most everyone you know will be doing the same thing you are at the same time.

In an on-demand world, we seldom all come together to share the same experience simultaneously. Yet, while we all watched the same game at the same time, some of us went to bed elated, and some of us were left deflated.

Famous Tate ran this display ad congratulating the hometown hero Buccaneers.

Elation in Tampa

Our good friends at Famous Tate in Tampa went to bed Sunday feeling pretty good, as Tom Brady brought his magic to Tampa Bay where he led his new team to victory.

“We cheered them on and ran some special ads congratulating the Bucs,” said Famous Tate principal Jason Horst. “Nothing crazy, just closed our showrooms one-hour early Sunday so our associates could get home in plenty of time for a socially-distanced Super Bowl with family and friends.”

Horst added that the Big Game came up during a discussion of COVID “silver linings” on a  BrandSourceYoung Professionals virtual get-together this week. “Tampa definitely had some things to cheer about over the past year,” he noted. “The Lightning winning the Stanley Cup,  The Rays making it to the World Series, and now the Bucs winning the Super Bowl! We definitely experienced some real highs here in Tampa.”

It is hard to hide the disappoint on rabid Chiefs fan Kevin Werner.

Deflation Elsewhere

Kevin Werner, General Manager of Member Relations for AVB/BrandSource, is a diehard Chiefs fan who was clearly disappointed his team did not repeat as champs. He shared a photo taken a day later with the bitter taste of defeat still showing on his face. Had he taken the picture Sunday night, he quipped, there would have been real tears to go with his frown. Ever the good sportsman, Werner gave props to the Buccaneers with “A tip of the cap to Brady and the Bucs!” Although a heartbreaking loss for the Chiefs Kingdom, and as cliche as it sounds, “There is always next year,” he said.

Dyed-in-the-wool Bills fan Paula Higginbotham on her way to a recent game in Buffalo

Paula Higginbotham, a Senior Account Manager with Tempur Sealy, added this on her beloved Bills ending up one game shy of the Super Bowl:

“Being a Bills fan is not just about cheering on the home team on Sundays; it’s a way of life. I grew up in Buffalo, N.Y., and became a Bills fan in 1969 when I attended my first game in War Memorial Stadium at the age of four. Jack Kemp was the quarterback and from that day I was hooked!”

“Over the past 51 years,” she continued, “we certainly have had our ups and downs. Buffalonians waited a generation for a team as good as the one that took us to four straight Super Bowls, and ultimately lost all four games in the early ’90s. And then came this year, when our team sprang to life. As we all know, the season came to an end against the Chiefs in the AFC Championship game.”

“We will be back,” she pledged, “and we will finally get that Super Bowl victory the city of Buffalo and the fans have been longing for. In Buffalo, we don’t say goodbye when we are leaving or signing off, we simply say “Go Bills!”

Andy Kriege shares a smile and a fond Super Bowl memory from 10 years ago when his Packers brought the Lombardi Trophy home.

And finally, as for myself, I really thought it was my year and that Aaron Rodgers was going to lead the Pack back to the promised land. I guess my dream of another Super Bowl for the Packers will have to wait for another year. It was hard for me to root for either team, but in the end settled in to enjoy the commercials and all the hype that is unique to this experience we call the Super Bowl. We had some great food that included Kansas City style BBQ, some Buffalo chicken wings and best of all, lots of good old Wisconsin cheese (to go with my hat).

I guess Super Sunday is a great day no matter who you are rooting for.

Andy Kriege is General Manager of Communications for AVB, parent of YSN, and is Publisher of YourSource magazine.