To: All WNY Servicemen
From: Curran's Corner
Subject: What's Doing at Home
Dear Neighbors: Well, I was somewhat surprised by those of you who said you didn't know that the Bills' success would bring added raps on Buffalo. Yes, that success gives the would-be comedians on the sports pages in other places the chance to talk about our "bleak city."
The only time I'm bugged by such characters is when I see a piece by a person who has never been to Buffalo or has seen nothing of the area except what his team's publicity director showed him during a visit.
I am not kidding when I say the average sportswriter covering an event in another city sees less of a city than a 5-year-old visiting that city with his parents.
In many cases that is understandable. And being fair guys, most of the writers who don't have the chance for real exposure to a city won't shoot zingers at it.
Those of you stationed in Florida and Arizona should realize that the editors of the newspapers there have a problem. They know that many of their readers like to be reassured that they did the right thing when they left the North and so take every opportunity to knock the North.
Anyway, it looks as if I am going to have to eat my August letter to you. In that number I said I would eat the column if the Bills won more than 10 games during the regular season.
Well, the only thing that could keep them from picking up at least one more victory in the last four games is another players' strike. And I certainly am glad the team put me into such a position.
In that August letter I said the Bills would lose to their three opponents from the National Football Conference -- Philadelphia, New York and Washington.
Last Sunday, an ESPN announcer said that the Bills play like an NFC team and refuse to be pushed around. That assessment is on target. The Eagles team they beat on Sunday is the "most physical club in the league." (In my playing days such a team would have been called "a dirty team.")
No fair observer could say that the Bills were lucky to beat the Eagles on Sunday. But our city's image makers got a lucky break when game day dawned clear and beautiful. The visitors were hardly back home when we were hit with the nastiest weather we have seen since last December.
If that weather had prevailed on game day, a Bills win would have meant a great deal less than it does now. The critics would have said that on a dry field the Eagles would have turned the locals every way but loose.
What the Philadelphia writers would have done is terrible to contemplate. But it must be remembered that they are used to dealing with the sort of fan who, it has been said, "would boo a cancer cure." I don't believe that, but I do believe the typical Philly fan would boo at an Easter egg hunt.
Am I now predicting a Super Bowl for the Bills? No, although I sure hope so. You know such an appearance would do a lot for the Buffalo image.
But each playoff team is capable of beating a superior but flat Buffalo team.
The hope here is that you have a good Christmas. And we trust that you realize, as in other years, we will be thinking of you people who are watching over the ramparts for us.
This time around we'll be praying that those ramparts stay quiet.
Keep writing and