The tips of my fingers were blue by the time I walked the 4 blocks to the entrance of the stadium. The layer of hoodies and sweats under my jeans couldn’t stop the abuse my body was taking from the icy snow that fell in downtown Cincinnati. The little boy next to me, who also walked what seemed like treacherous terrain, had blood shot cheeks and a ruby red nose. His eyes were as big as mine as we entered Paul Brown Stadium. I adjusted my pig-tails from under my knit Bengals hat that my father gave me for the game. My first ever NFL game.

Speechless, I handed over Luke’s ticket to the usher as I fumbled through all 7 pockets to find mine. He showed us to our seats, 50-yard line, just rows behind Coach Marvin Lewis and the rest of the Cincinnati Bengals sideline. My stomach sunk as I tried my best to breath, literally breath taken by the enormous stadium and thousands of fans. The two of us climbed over people as we made our way to our seats, which were given to us because the owners of the season tickets had laundry to do on this frigged Sunday. Go figure. Just barely 14, Luke and I had our chest puffed out proud that we took on the challenge of attending the game by ourselves only obtaining the tickets hours ago as church was letting out.

I was just a little girl who loved football and sitting next to me, from opposite ends of what we called reality, was a boy who loved the same thing. The love of the game for myself, Luke and the fans that surrounded us is what created an unimaginable atmosphere where we all had a connection. We all cheered together. We all wanted a win. For every first down completed or defensive stop, we all felt like we knew each other. The love of the game brought the many different backgrounds, colors, and creeds together. That day, I created a love affair with football.

And that is MY sports-topia. Welcome to my world!

This is more than blogging to me. I am a sports enthusiast who is obsessed with all aspects of athletics. Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio I am a die-heart Bengals and Redlegs fan. I love the Michael Jordans of the world and can’t get enough of the Cinderella Story. I mean, who doesn’t? I feed into the drama that the sports arena can offer, entertaining and never lackluster.

A Jersey Girl at her best!

Hope to see you soon,

B. Long (@Ms4thandLong)