I'm not sure if was ingrained at me at home when I was young because I don't recall my father actually saying he hated them. I sure ingrained on my kids though. I taught them two things:
- The words to Bruce Springsteen's Thunder Road
- The fact that the last line of that song "It's a town full of losers
And I'm pulling out of here to win." is about Dallas.
It's a hatred that has developed over years of watching Emmit Smith run through gigantic holes for first down after first down. Years of Troy Akman throwing a fade to Michael Irvin for a TD. Years of the Cowgirls winning the division while we fought the Cardinals for last place.
I hate the Dallas Cowboys and nothing gives me as much pleasure as watching them lose to the Eagles and no coach has done it more than Andy Reid. I recall it was in this very room that I watched, mouth agape, as the Eagles kicked an on-sides kick to start the 2000 season in Dallas in the famous "pickle juice" game. They got the ball, marched for a score and then kicked off to "Americas Team" and on the first defensive play, Corey Simon sacked Troy "the robot" Aikman.
I loved it.
I remember Reggie White, chasing Aikman. It looked like bear was on the loose.
I remember Jimmy Johnson trying to cover up his finely coiffed head to avoid being hit by snowball. A snowball that may have come from someone that then Philadelphia DA Ed Rendall may have paid $10 to throw. I am not making that up. The now Governer of Pennsylvania admitted to giving some kid $10 if he could "reach the field". I think he hates Dallas.
It's difficult to explain to people that it really was OK that we booed Michael Irvin as he lay prone and unable to move on the artificial turf at the Vet. We hated Michael Irvin. God forbid it ever happen to TO but if it did, they would get out of the stands and beat him. We hate Dallas.
I actually went to a Monday night game against Dallas in 2005. It was the one that ended McNabb's season. I went with a friend who has season tickets and he brought two other friends. The parking was really bad that year and we had to park far away. We were walking the 7 or so blocks to the Linc and a another couple was walking beside near us, also headed to the game. She had on a Green McNabb jersey and he had a Roy Williams Dallas jersey.
At first the taunts were distant and muffled but as we got closer to ground zero, the ticket gates, the taunts became sharper and more clear. By time the poor guy was in the final line to get in the stadium, he was nearly crying.
They hated him because he was a Dallas fan.
Last year I went to the Eagles Miami game. Waiting in line, spurious chants of Dallas Sucks broke out. They were playing the Dolphins!
Yesterday I was at the Phillies day game with my Brothers, Father and Nephew. When Shane Victorino hit a 3 run homer late in the game, the TV cameras showed the above guy in a "Romo is Homo" shirt. We just snickered. At least it wasn't a national televised game.
I wish I had a shirt like that.