A Who Dat Gets Angry: Screw You, and Your Schadenfreude

Sean Payton weeps for Favre's poor wittle ankle

Let me introduce myself to the two of you who found this blog who don’t already know me.  I’m a lifelong Saints fan, and I’m getting sick of all this crap.  That’s all you really need to know for now.  I’ve never written a blog post in my life, and I don’t know if I’ll ever write one again, but I need to get this off my chest.  It really doesn’t even matter if anyone ever reads it – because it’ll make me, a Saints fan, feel better, and Saints fans are all any Saints fan should be concerning himself with right now anyway.

See, I frequent a big Saints forum.  In the days after “bountygate” (what a stupid friggin’ name for it) broke, I was as mad as any Saints fan out there.  I found myself angry at the coaches, at the players, and at the staff for putting my dearly beloved team in this position.  But the members on that message board didn’t see it that way – they blamed the commish (“nazi!”) for bringing down these penalties on just us, the East Coast Media Elites for making something out of nothing, the whiners in Minnesota and Arizona who were mad about their precious quarterbacks getting bobos after playing the mean ol’ Saints.
I didn’t understand – I thought that our organization had brought it on themselves, and I didn’t get the anger at everyone else.  Maybe I just didn’t want to believe that the whole league was out to get us.  After all, what kind of future does that foretell if nobody wants the Saints to succeed?

And then I had an epiphany.

See, there was an article posted on the community.  This loser falcons fan (no, smartass, it shouldn’t be capitalized) rails on and on about those hardheaded Saints fans he despises so much.  He speaks of Schadenfreude!  Imagine that.  He pans our political structure, our culture, even our parades (what’s up with that) in this tl;dr-worthy rant about how Saints fans are so intolerable to the rest of them.  His skills with an internet browser are exemplary; he even figured out thesaurus.com by the looks of it.  falcon fans are a lot of things, but pretentious?  That’s a new one.
What really opened my eyes was the response to the article from Saints fans.  “This guy is allsome[tm]!”  “He really respects what we’ve accomplished!”  “Yeah, tell em brah!”
Wait, what?
I tried to argue.  This guy is insulting us.  He even took apart the “everybody did it” defense, and he while doing so insulted our collective intelligence.  No members found that post helpful, you better believe that.
That’s when I realized it.  Reality doesn’t matter.  The way the rest of the league’s fan base perceives reality sure as hell doesn’t matter.  The opinions of a falcon fan?  Please.  Right now, all we have is ourselves.  The rest of the league?  Screw em.  The commish?  To hell with him.  The other teams’ fans?  Whatever, man.
So I’m not writing this to defend our team, or to condemn the commissioner, or to excuse anything about the bounty fiasco.  That was me just a few days ago, but I’m over it.  I’m here to explain what makes being a Who Dat great.
Did Sean Payton get what was coming to him?  Should he have known better than to lie to the commish?  Did he put us behind the eight-ball this year?  Who cares?  Doesn’t matter.
Did the actions of the 2009-2011 Saints put the league in jeopardy of lawsuits?  Did they threaten the livelihoods of opposing players?  Not my problem.
Is Gregg Williams’s behavior the last three years, and indeed, for the entirety of his career, as it appears, abhorrent?  You’re damn right it is.  He should be banned for life.  Why?  Because he’s not a Saint anymore.  Not our problem anymore.  He left, and on the way out he blitzed six and single-covered Vernon Davis.  Screw him.
Hypocritical?  Maybe.  Why should I care?
I’m not a football fan, pal – I’m a Saints fan.  I care only about what helps us WIN.  Winning is paramount, and winning is what Sean Payton does.  I see that now.  I understand, and I’ll defend him to the death.  I couldn’t care less about the real world.  Just give me a Super Bowl, and I don’t care if you have to shank Aaron Rodgers during pregame warmups to make it happen.
Let’s not pretend the Who Dat Nation is one big happy family.  We have our disagreements (see also: Delhomme v. Brooks, Is Reggie A Bust, and every other draft pick ever) but let me give you one thing we all agree on.
We don’t care if we’re the bad guys.  We were over the feel-good Katrina nonsense about three years before the ECME tired of it.  We’re back, we’re okay, and it can be about football now.  If that means focusing on bounties and cheap shots and running up the score, fine.  Hate us.  I love it.  We’re energized by it.  We got our Super Bowl.  What else is there?  I’ll tell you what else.  There’s winning it all while everybody goes on about how much they hate our team and our fans and while 90% of America roots against us, instead of giving us hugs and patronizing us with garbage about our deserving it “after all we’ve been through.”
Keep hating.  Keep cringing every time you hear a “Who Dat!” coming down from the upper deck of your pathetic half-empty stadium.  (Yeah, we know it’s the most oboxious chant in the history of football – that’s why we do it, numbskull.) 
Every night when we lay down to sleep we will dream dreams of a coachless, scorched-earth streak of terror through the league you hold so precious in your heart to a 19-0 Super Bowl victory in our own stadium, and awake ready for another day, refreshed and invigorated by the wailing and gnashing of teeth from every rotten, bitter, angry, self-righteous fan around the league.
We will revel in your disgust, and believe without fail every second of our lives:
Every day in which a falcon fan (or any other) is inspired to write a blog post about the hardheadedness and ignorance and staying power of the Who Dat Nation is a roaring success.  That, my friend, is Schadenfreude.

I’ve begun trolling the sports media on Twitter.  Follow me at @angrywhodat and help me irritate the hell out of the rest of the NFL. 

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