“Who’s got it better than us?” the man shouted.
“Nobody!” everyone in the bar chanted.
Well, almost everyone. I was caught off guard by the call and response chant. Plus, I couldn’t understand what anyone was saying. It all sounded like gibberish to me.
“What did that guy say?” I whispered to my wife.
I hoped no one heard me. I didn’t want to be exposed as the new 49ers fan that I am.
“It’s a 49ers thing,” my wife said.
“I get that, but what did they say? I can’t make out the words,” I said. “I want to join in the fun.”
My wife told me what was being said and I assured myself that I would be ready to join in the next time the cheer started.
“Who’s got it better than us?” the guy asked minutes later.
“Nobody!” everyone shouted.
Again, that would be everyone except me. As much as I wanted to be in with the crowd, I couldn’t get the timing right. I was a little too late in my response. This cheering for the 49ers was proving harder than it looked.
I usually watch football games at home, but for the NFC championship game I decided to go out and watch the game with scores of San Francisco fans.
So, my wife and I went to Pudley’s Tavern & Grill in San Carlos. We grabbed a table, ordered burgers and drinks, and sat back, ready to enjoy the game.
This was my first time watching a 49ers game at a sports bar and I desperately wanted to fit in with the 49ers fans at the bar. I was wearing the 49ers sweatshirt my wife gave me, so I looked the part of a fan. But, obviously, I was clueless as to my obligations as far as cheering was concerned.
That afternoon proved to be the most fun I’ve had watching a football game in a long time. I’ve gone to sports bars to watch Ohio State football games with various OSU alumni groups. But that was years ago and I seemed to have forgotten how much fun you can have watching a football game with people who are passionate about their team.
For most of the first quarter, the atmosphere in Pudley’s was subdued. With the 49ers down 17-0, very few people seemed to be in the partying mood. By halftime spirits seemed to have improved and talk had turned to the comeback that the 49ers were making.
In the second half, the mood in the bar was decidedly more upbeat. That’s when the call and response cheering started. As I said I missed the first few chants, but by the 5th time the chanting started, I was in on the fun.
The cool thing about watching a game at a place like Pudley’s is that everyone seems to be on the same page. The fumble on the one-yard line led to a collective groan from everyone, including me. And when Frank Gore ran for the TD that put the 49ers up the place exploded with cheering.
“Who’s got it better than us?” the guy shouted
“Nobody!” everyone shouted.
After the game, high fives were exchanged like they were going out of style. The crowd proved to be exciting people to watch a 49ers game with.
Later, when my wife and I walked to the car, we smiled at each other. We had had a fun afternoon.
“Who’s got it better than us?” I asked her as I drove home.
“Nobody!” she said.