I 'd like to welcome everyone to the first ever Ditka's Lounge. I came up with the idea for a post of this nature over the weekend and if it turns out to be a popular feature I might continue it as a feature of some capacity, with the blessing of our leadership of course!
I hope to provide you with some thoughts of mine about a random topic, which can be anything that pops into my head and I feel like writing about. So come inside grab a beer, or glass of Courvoisier and a polish sausage and hang out for awhile.
Today we are going to talk about taking a pilgrimage to somewhere we feel a connection to, for example going to the Pro Football Hall of Fame to see all the Bears inductees and record holders. What spawned the idea for this topic was the article that Dane posted in the Den today about the Minnesota fans that are planning on traveling to Hattiesburg Mississippi to see where Favre was born and what not. Before we go any further I think we need to look into what a pilgrimage is, in religion and spirituality, a pilgrimage is a long journey or search of great moral significance. Sometimes, it is a journey to a shrine of importance to a person's beliefs and faith.
Now I'm not saying that we as football fans, even Viking fans look at these types of trips as being a trip of spirituality or faith. True sports fans do feel a connection to the places that have historical significance to their team so I think that's about as close to a parrallel that we can draw. Now what grinds my gears a bit here in the case of the Viking fans trip is how did Favre (a man who spent all but 3 years of his career as a Packer mind you) become this Viking god? To me it makes more sense for people to travel to places after the individual has left the game or god forbid left the earth (RIP Sweetness). Hattiesburg and the Kiln (where Favre was born) isn't exactly Graceland so I don't understand the facination in going there.
I guess what I'm trying to figure out is how does a QB that played for your hated rivial achieve a deity type status amoung some of the fans. The thought even crossed my mind as to how would we as Bears fan reacted if instead of Jay Cutler we had signed Favre? Would the signing of Favre and the poetential for a playoff run wipe clean all the nightmares and heartache he had caused in the past? If he ended up winning a Superbowl for us, would he be held up in regard to some of the great legends of Chicago lore? Maybe some Viking fans can shed some light upon the topic and give us that unbiased fan insight that truly tells us how they feel about him. Do they say to themselves we want a championship so bad that we can look past the devil that is Favre and accept him as long as he wins, if not we can easily forget him and move on. When it's all said and done and the dust has setteled, 20 years down the road will a trip to Hattiesburg be a trip for Viking fans or Packer fans? Or will both fan bases celebrate him?
I think for us as Bears fans the obvious start for our trips would be Halas Hall and Soldier Field. But how die hard of a fan are you. It's easy to pack up and head to a big city like Chicago. Who wants to go to Columbia Mississippi and see Walter Payton's hometown? I can't think many of us would be lining up to go. Is it something you would plan a trip specifically for or would it be a place you might go if you were already going to be in the area?
Ok so where is it that you would like to take a trip to, doesn't have to be limited to just the Bears. Also please feel free to add any thoughts of your in the comments section, if you know the answer to some of my questions please let me know. Also if you like this post please rec it, if you don't I guess feel free to flag it. :)