Like any big day, it starts with preparation the night before. I knew I had to be down at Hawk Alley for a TV interview at 7:30 a.m. That means I had to catch the bus by 6:30, which means I had to be up at around 5:30. So sound sleep wasn't really in the cards. With the alarm set I laid my head down for a night of light sleep. After I got in my several hours, I sprang up getting into my outfit for the day: white Sonics warm up pants, my Sonics Guy away Seahawks jersey, and a beautiful beaded Sonics necklace made and given to me by a great Sonics fan named Traci De Los Santos.
I was parked at the Transit Center and on a bus headed to Seattle by 6:30 a.m. Even though it was pitch black out the bus was busy and buzzing with excitement and anticipation of the game that wouldn't take place for 9 hours. As I got off the bus I headed to Utah Avenue, the first stop on my rounds to deliver the Sonics message to the masses. Tom Brown, who runs the Blue Line Express tailgate, invited me to get interviewed at his tailgate by Channel 5. After that I was able to get interviewed by Channel 13. When the reporter asked what I had learned from being Sonics Guy, I said regardless of someone's politics, religion, income or orientation, sports is a true unifier in bringing us together.
After the Q13 interview, it was only a little after 9 a.m. This brings me to another point of mastering the navigation of the tailgates for 6 hours and it's a one word answer: Moderation! Moderation is the key to surviving, especially with all of the food and other stuff available. Also, thank you to everyone for their generosity throughout the season.
As the game drew near I stood out in front of the Stadium with my over-sized Sonics sign with the FOX network call letters. I could tell a miracle ticket wouldn't come through for me today. I could hear the roar of the crowd as the starting lineups were introduced and then I knew it was time to find a place to watch the game. My original game plan was to hit a bar right next door, like Sluggers, but as kickoff happened the line was still out the door. So I decided to venture a bit further out and ended up at Temple Billiards, an amazing bar off Jackson St. This place is usually a soccer bar where the Sounders Emerald City Supporters hang out, but today it was a Seahawks bar packed full of people who wanted to cheer our boys in blue and green. This place was crowded and everyone was supporting one team.
During the first part of the game you could feel the tension, but no one gave up on our team. In the second half we cheered SEA-HAWKS! so loud I'm sure blocks away Russell Wilson could hear us. During the 49ers last drive everyone was a bundle of nerves. When Sherman made the tip and Smith got the interception, it was screams, hugs and high fives all around. Few things bring people together like an NFC Championship game - now let's do it again this Sunday!