Season Opener: Buffalo Bills 09/14/09
With much Patriotic enthusiasm, the Razor’s Edgers looked forward to the season opener and getting back to Real Football! Set to open at Gillette on a national stage on Monday Night Football, the crew was there to support not just the current team of players but the All Time Team Members in celebration of the 50 Year Anniversary of the AFL.
While many of the crew rendezvoused at last year’s successful meeting spot off Exit 9 of Route 95 at Wicked Bistro, the Cardozas were late arrivals due to the fact that it was a school day. The group secured the perimeter in Lot P10 and was easy to locate once we finally made our way through the traffic on Rt. 1. There’s much to be said for arriving very early and awaiting the opening of the gates! It took an hour to travel the 3 miles from the exit to the lot. Along the way, the smells and sounds of taligating in full swing wafted in through open windows in bumper to bumper traffic en route to our destination.
Once inside, offerings of Buffalo Chili and Buffalo Wings were mostly met with already full bellies but there were some takers to feast upon our opponent. Zip adorned his tent with the familiar FTFT54 blue banner and also a special edition thank-you banner for Tedy which later hung proudly in the stadium, proclaiming, “Full Tilt, Full Time, Fulfilled! Thanks, Tedy!”
A VISA camera crew was also on hand, filming REAL fans in their element, just doing what we do naturally. This was in accompaniment to Zip and Tedy’s filming in Boston on the previous day. Looking forward to seeing the finished commercial throughout the season!
Naturally, there were jello shot toasts, Bruschi Brew, Sam’s Octoberfest and a variety of food and drink provided by the regulars. It was nice to catch up with the crew which included (but not limited to….) Zip, Tracy, Jose and Quinn, Mike, Robin and Geoff, Monty with Dave, Darren, Mark with his boys, Don and Karen, Robin and Rich, Joyce and Chris. Jim from NY who got Buddy Love to join our group this week as well. Bob swung by later too as did lots of drop in guests including one couple from Indiana who were there for a birthday surprise and happened upon our Patriotic crew.
Ironically, we brought with us a magazine to give to Zip, because the publisher asked to use one of my creative commons photos for an article on tailgating and I agreed. It just so happened to be a picture of him with two Buffalo fans adorned in 54 jerseys after last year’s Buffalo game, paying back a pregame wager over the outcome of the game. One of the fans in the photo was once again with us for the tailgate and was ecstatic to see herself in print. (No doubt, she looked just as nice in a Pats 54 this year at the post game tailgate too!)
Many of the crew headed in early to take in the Pregame 50th Celebrations and hoped to get some Tedy Time, who was participating both in his role of ESPN NFL Analyst and All-Time Team Defensive Captain. There certainly was excitement in the air and anticipation of opening the season at home against a division rival. (Unfortunately, the camera battery died mid-tailgate so there’s no photographic evidence on hand…)
The game started off flat, the half-time events drew thunderous applause, the PSAs that Zip, Quinn, and Karen filmed this summer played on the jumbotrons, and the Pats pulled off an incredible come from behind, last minute win to start the season off 1-0 .. such is life at Gillette!
While it was a day of celebration and excitement, it also came with mixed emotions as some of our group paid tribute and toasted a missing member of our crew who was lost during the offseason. Here’s to you, Harry, a dedicated Pats fan and friend…. Go Pats!!