It happens every year. Spirits rise up. They captivate your soul, only to take a brand new electric chainsaw and cut your emotions into a trillion pieces. Some years the assault arrives earlier than others, but this time the bloodbath shot through at a painfully slow pace into the joyous holiday season.
The Detroit Lions give pain to all who cheer their name. Like a drug, fans can’t get enough and will be back next season begging for more. Because before the pain there is the ability to hope.
Hope just might be the most powerful trait of the human spirit. Without a doubt it is our greatest possession. Because hope is something that can never be taken away, it can only be given up. It is a universally inherent gift that gives those with nothing else something to live for, something to wait for.
It is encouraged when we are young with Santa Claus, a winning Lions team, etc. As we grow older hope can lose its luster. The world is not quite as magical, and the Lions keep losing. But people are resilient, none more so than Detroit’s native.
The parallels between the city and its team are remarkable. Detroit was the economical mecca of 1950′s America with an NFL powerhouse in its backyard. But as the fiscal climate dipped, so did the success of the Lions franchise. Almost 60 years later, Detroit continues the wait to be renewed both on its streets and on the field.
Tourists continue to visit Detroit, and fans still file into Ford Field. No matter what, Michigan will love Detroit and its team. No matter the pain, a family will wait patiently.
So whether Jim Schwartz stays with the Lions or leaves with an extra 12 million dollars in his pocket, fans will be back again because of the chance that next season will last just a few weeks longer.
Maybe one day Detroit and the Lions will return to glory. Super Bowl XLIX dare I say? One can hope, always.