fanatic [fuh-nat-ik] noun – a person with an extreme and uncritical enthusiasm or zeal
With the Astros recent seasons of struggles, there have been some questions raised on the Internets about “true fans”. Most of the questions have been posted on Twitter by other fans, but they should still be addressed, because my “true fan” status is at stake here, yo!
What makes you a “true fan” of a team? Is it your loyalty? Is it your tattoo? Is it your positivity? What about your negativity? Do you go to most of the home games? Do you travel to see your favorite team play on the road? Have you been cheering for the same team since you were 5?
In my mind “true fan” can be defined in countless numbers of ways and all of the above scenarios can realistically come in to play. A “true fan” lives and dies with their team, whether they’re winning or losing. You still go to games and follow their every move. A “true fan” is positive, but is also realistic and knows when his/her team isn’t good and can say it. Yes, it’s great to be positive about your team and to talk them up, but seriously when your team is the worst team in baseball it’s OK to be negative.
Confession time, I have been known to poke fun at the Houston Nine on Twitter quite often. I’ve said they look like little leaguers (they do at times), I’ve called out certain ballplayers for their strikeouts and lack of batting (I’m looking at you Jordan Schafer), and I joke about their fielding when errors are made. Seriously, they’re in the big leagues they shouldn’t be running into each other on the field, but all kidding aside I’m still at most every home game (I missed 10) and I still hope that they win, or play well, every night. Does my poking fun make me less of a fan? I don’t think so.
Another question that has been raised is what the proper etiquette should be if a player follows you, the fan, on Twitter. Twitter is an amazing social media tool that I think all ballplayers should be a part of. I think it’s an outstanding way to stay connected and to interact with fans. Ballplayers are big boys and they should be able to handle criticism and negativity. If they can’t, well they shouldn’t be on Twitter.
As fans I think it’s important to support your team in the good times and the bad. Obviously you want your team to win, but when they’re losing you don’t just give up and stop root root rooting. As fans I also think it’s important to support your fellow fan. Who are we to judge what makes someone a “good” fan or a “bad” fan. We’re all cheering for the same team and hoping that they do well and in the end that’s fan enough for me!
Greis Perez (AmazingGreis), pronounced Grace, is a lifelong Astros fan and contributor for Aerys Sports. You can email her at email@example.com, or follow her on Twitter, @AmazingGreis, where she’s considered a #BadFan and professes her undying love for Justin Timberlake and all things sparkly!