We met at a Raider Bar.
The week prior was Week 4 - 2016, the Raiders beat the Ravens 28 - 27 and that was the last time I yelled, screamed and cried at my TV alone. When that game ended with a Touchdown pass from Carr to Crabtree I remembered a stranger who stopped me before the season started.
“Do you know there is a group of Raider fans who meet up nearby?”
I am sure it was my everyday attire that caught his attention: Raider hoodie, Chucks and a silver and black emblem hanging off my keyring. Adapting to life as a displaced Californian in NC I came to the realization that my everyday casual wear was always going to be a conversation piece. He was like most people I came across outside of The Bay, he wasn’t a Raider fan but knew of one.
After my heart rate returned to normal following the Week 4 win I looked up the Raider meetup the stranger had told me about and kicked myself when I found out it was just down the street.
2016 - Week 5
I waited all week for Sunday because as a Raider fan that is how you track time during football season. This week I was going to see what that meetup was all about. This was the first time I ever watched a game with Raider Nation outside of The Bay and I wasn’t sure what to expect. I walked into the sports bar in my everyday Raider casual and began to look for my seat. Before I could scan the whole bar a tall man dressed in silver and black who was babysitting a pitcher of Sweet Tea waved me down and offered me a chair among the group of Raider fans who were dressed just like me.
That Week the Raiders beat the Chargers 31-34 and we yelled, screamed and cried at the TV together, those fans became family and since then I never watched a game alone. As for the man with his pitcher of Sweet Tea, he became my best friend and now fiance while the rest of our story is being written as we speak.
Find out where Raider Nation meets in your area by clicking this link