And why the hell not, right? We Minnesotans have nothing else to do while we are waiting for a polar bear to fall into the trap that we crudely constructed out of Miller Lite bottles and Prince albums outside our igloos. Sadly, I suppose you should count me among the huddled, freezing masses.
So, how does (yet another) heartbreaking loss in the NFC Championship Game a couple of weeks ago unite Vikings fans into spending $650.00 to purchase a week’s worth of advertising space on a billboard in Hattiesburg, Mississippi that implores Brett Favre to return to play for the Purple next season? Of course, with all grass roots efforts these days, we can thank Facebook.
Jay Tappe, a 34-year-old resident of Minneapolis started up the Facebook page, “4 MILLION VIKINGS FANS WANT BRETT FAVRE BACK IN MINNESOTA FOR 2010″ and the rest, as they say, is dysfunctional history.
Tappe’s Facebook page hasn’t recruited the 4 million Vikings fans that it alludes to – as of Thursday, there were 90,000 – but that does not mean Tappe is going to give up and drop the ball like the Vikings did against the Saints.
Of course, bearing that burden has become easier as the group has multiplied rapidly. Tappe said he was devastated by the NFC title game loss, but by the day after he decided he needed a 180-degree attitude switch. The Facebook group was the first order of business.
“I had to turn it into something positive because I was so crushed Sunday with how bad Favre was getting beat up,” Tappe said. “All the sudden there were 10,000 members after a day. I was like, ‘What in the hell is going on?’”
Looking at the bright side of things is a way of life in Minnesota – especially for Vikings fans. It’s the only way we can carry on. See, that’s what we hearty, salt-of-the-earth people up Nort’ do when life gives us lemons – we make Lemon Icees. Ya sure, you Brettcha, that’s what we do. Ha! Get it? Because that’s how we talk up hear, don’t ya know? No? Real good then.
And if a billboard sign in Hattiesburg isn’t enough to convince the Ol’ Gunslinger to return for another run at the Super Bowl that will likely result in another heartbreaking loss, KFAN, the flagship station of the Minnesota Vikings, is joining the fight by purchasing a sign of their own down Mississippi way.
This one will be visible from both directions of the same highway and could be up as early as Friday. It will say: “DEAR BRETT, DEANNA & FAMILY, THANK YOU FOR COMING TO MINNESOTA. WE’D LOVE TO HAVE YOU BACK. VIKINGS FANS 4-EVER.”
“The message is geared directly at the Favre family as a whole and not just Brett,” said Tim Hyde, promotions director at KFAN, which broadcasts Vikings games. “After, all he needs the support of his family to make the decision to come back. We want to let him know he is also welcome here in Minnesota.”
And here I wonder why people make fun of Minnesotans all the time. It’s a badge of honor, really. In some twisted way, we are proud of our rube-like behavior. It keeps the body warm during the long, harsh winters, I guess.
In the end, who knows if our deep-seated sense of community and desperate pleas will be enough to convince Favre and his family to come back. But at least we know that we tried our best.
Fans tell Favre: Please come back [Star Tribune]