A tradition in many homes across this awesome region and great land at this time of year is to go around the table and give thanks for all the things that are dear to one’s heart. So here, in the themes of the bountiful meal we are all about to engorge on Thanksgiving, are some thanks of mine for our local sports teams and their fans.
Thanks for the entrée – the main dish; the meat; the twin, big, fat, golden gobblers — the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres for providing a feast, a belly-full of succulent nourishment, fuel for our energy and emotions, the very sustenance of our sporting wants, needs and desires.
Buffalo feeds off its two major sports teams, and they are among the very few things that can bring an entire region collective joy, believing in the same thing, for all the right reasons, and experiencing as one. Young and old, man and woman, child and adult, and every race, creed, color and political bent.
Thanks for the stuffing, made from scratch – the players who come from all over the world and all walks and ways of life to our little corner of it, to enjoy, enrage, embolden, empower, enjoin and entertain us.
Thanks for the MAC, er, mashed potatoes – the UB Bulls in football and men's and women's basketball for making local major college sports play on a national level again. The advancement to the postseason bowls and tournaments is, of course, gravy. The very best gravy.
Thanks for the squash, sprouts, sweet potatoes and yams; those lesser-known but equally deserving taters and veggies – the other local college teams and athletes who work just as hard for less press and glory.
Thanks for the delicious cranberry sauce – the bodacious Beauts, league-leading Amerks and Bandits – that we relish so much.
A special thanks for our cooks and hosts – Terry and Kim Pegula – for their timely and timeless devotion to the entire region that has been a boon to the economy, for assuaging deep-rooted fears, and for showing limitless generosity.
Great thanks to the warmest homes in the country to celebrate our holidays – the beautiful, blossoming City of Buffalo, Rochester, all of Western New York and the surrounding areas.
Thanks to our adult and seasonal beverages, our crazy aunts and uncles — you weird and wonderful Canucks anywhere across the border.
Thanks for the leftovers – the former and retired members of the local sports teams who still make their home here, or still live here in their minds and memories, still rooting for their old teams.
And finally, a great big thanks for what many consider the best part of the meal – the desserts, those apple and pumpkin pies – to you all and your families. The Buffalo faithful. You fellow fans.
You gorgeous, crazy, determined, tipsy, faithful, loutish, devoted, under-informed and over-opinionated lovers of your teams, their laundry and their players.
It’s a wonderful life, and tremendous feeling, being in the Buffalo sports teams' family this time of year.
Feast or famine.
Happy Thanksgiving to you all!
Pete Rosen is a screenwriter in Los Angeles and a lifetime Buffalo fan. He may be found blathering daily at twobillsdrive.com.