Thursday, January 26, 2006

Scoring with the Fans

I’m really not poking fun at Houston’s new, professional soccer club. Not being a “sports journalist,” and having never played ANY organized sport EVER, far be it for me to be critical of something I just really cannot relate to. But a lot of people—including your’s truly—are scratching our heads about this one.

"Houston 1836"

What does that mean?

That’s the official name of the new soccer franchise team in Houston.
One point in favor of this label—it is geographically accurate.
There’s no doubt where THIS team is playing, nor for whom.
Which could be a blessing or a curse.

Of course that could be said for any of Houston’s other professional sports clubs—depending upon the season, a blessing or a blight on our town’s reputation among sports fans.

If we can capture the back-to-back Rockets Championship wins…if we can bottle the fervor that took the Astros to the World Series (and win or lose, they DID earn their ticket to play in The Big Show)…if we can tap into the magic of the Comets’…and refine the glory days of the Oilers and Texans (both of them), and from this alchemy produce a Houston-namesake winner, I don’t think anyone’s going to mind as much.

But what a row to hoe.

The official colors of our new soccer team could be prophetic: “Raven Black,,” “Space City Blue,” and “Wildcatter Orange.” That’s what many pro- and amateur athletes look like on any given Sunday following a game: black and blue, with betadine orange smeared over the really ugly places.

Wonder if Sherwin Williams has plans to stock any of those colors in their rainbow of selections for Spring?

As I understand it, there is a tradition in Europe (where soccer fanaticism can cause riots—imagine that!) of naming teams for their cities of origin, including the date of establishment.

Of the city, not the team.

So Houston 1836 has a logical validity.
I think it’s just begging for trouble:
"My team’s better than your team… "
"My town’s older than your town… "

Imagine a playoff game between Houston 1836 and Stonehenge 2000…B.C.

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