Last night Junior Seau was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He played for my favorite team, the San Diego Chargers. He played for twenty years. Had he not played another down after thirteen years with my Chargers, he still would have been a first ballot hall of famer. He was that good.
He died two years ago.
Last night Sydney Seau said some things about her father. She spoke like a woman who still misses being daddy's little girl. She spoke of her father's passion, not just for the game, but for life itself. She spoke in a manner that made even those who did not know her father wish they had. She spoke in a way that made me think, if I had ever had a daughter I would have wanted to raise her, love her, so well that she would have spoken of me like that.
|If there were a dad Hall of Fame you'd be a first ballot inductee|
It was impossible not to feel what she felt when she said her dad was more than 'just enough,' he was everything.
In 1992 the Chargers started 0-4 and still made the playoffs, the Raiders were still in LA, Ronnie Lott had moved to the down the I-5, and Junior Seau was just hitting his stride. For my birthday dad got us tickets on the 50 yard line for the Chargers game in LA. The Raiders, for all their fanbase bluster, could never sell out half the LA Coliseum, so we sat in a half empty cavern of a stadium. I was surrounded by
Ronnie and Junior made it a cringe game. Every series one of them would hit someone so hard the entire stadium would cringe then fall into eery silence. It was a man's game and there were two men among men swinging putting everyone else on notice that boys should not step on the field.
The Chargers won. Duh.
Dad and I stuck around and took some pictures. It wasn't sports. It was, it always is, a father and a son sharing a moment. Remember when Seau broke the Raiders? Knowing smile, yeah dad. That was the same day you caught syphilis because you touched a Raiderette.
It's never just sports. It's sons and daughters staying connected to their hero.
It's siblings staying connected to each other, speaking a language all their own.
The Raiders suck! (I miss you)
Still better than the Chargers! (I miss you, too)
Junior Seau was my favorite player on my favorite team. My dad was my hero. I don't know if Sydney even likes football. I know that her dad was her hero.
Underneath it all, we're all connected.