Sunday, February 6, 2011

here we go steelers- and victorian rugby!

As many readers probably already know, I live in Pittsburgh.  I am not a big American football fan at all.  But the Steelers are once again in the Super Bowl, and Pittsburgh sports teams are kind of a big deal around here.  The instructor I had at Pitt who started me on blogging once commented that Pittsburgh was the only city he knew of where the colors and jerseys of the local sports teams were considered a true fashion statement.  It's only too true.  You see Steelers fans at all times of the year, in bars, at nightclubs, at the grocery store, at work. Black and gold is often used for interior and exterior decorating, and signs and flags are kept up year-round.

Besides, the Steeler Nation has spread from the original Steel City to what some may consider a worldwide phenomenon.  Many people left Pittsburgh in the '80s due to the financial hardships imposed on the steel companies, often by their own unions, that led to the disintegration of the industry in this area.  But the loyal Pittsburghers, more often than not, took their love of the local football team with them.  My boyfriend saw more Steelers paraphenelia than Cleveland Browns support when he lived in Toledo for one year, and last year my uncle, while waiting to be shipped off to the Middle East for yet another Army Reserves tour of duty, was able to stem his homesickness at a Steelers-themed pub in Ramstein, Germany.

The modern sport of rugby (invented by the Victorians around 1870) is a rougher and tougher sport than American football will ever be- no helmets or pads.  But at least it's safer?

image source: Rugby-Pioneers

I shall be watching the game at a local coffee shop, where I, the non-fan, will be working so the other baristas can watch the game.  Sseeing as I am descended from immigrant steel workers, representatives of that industry which gave the Steelers their team name, I will offer my meager support in the local fashion of black and yellow.  No wonder steampunk and neo-Victorian fashions fail in this industrial city.

So good luck, and "Here We Go Steelers!"

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