Red and blue speckled (smiling) zombies.
MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota- “I’ve been drinking for 86 hours straight,” thus spake a guy in a Bills hat who sat down next to me at gate 16 of terminal one in Minneapolis.
“Yeah man, it was a good weekend. I’ve been partying for days,” I replied. “All the Bills fans in here look how I feel.”
The airport was packed with returning Western New Yorkers. Our eyes are bloodshot, we’re stumbling, some of us are drooling, but we’re all very, very happy. We won. We won when we didn’t expect to.
I told this to a girl from Minnesota the night before. “Wait,” she stopped me short, “you mean to tell me that you traveled all the way out here and you expected to lose?”
“Yes, of course. This is just what we do.”
Well, some guys on a field won. We didn’t win anything, but for some reason we feel like we did something and it makes us happy.
We’re now all feeling the effects of a weekend of travel, drinking, and football. We’re look like blue and red speckled zombies trudging through the terminal hoping that we can make it to our plane before passing out or getting lost. Even muttering the customary “Go Bills” when we see each other is a stretch.
The weekend is over. We will return to our small towns and under-populated cities and tell the tale of how thousands of people from WNY took over the city and how we partied for days and how cool it was when Allen jumped over dude, and they will say, “I gotta go do that too” and this shit will continue growing.
We had a layover at DC Reagan. This is one of my favorite airports — I like the skeletal metal cage that forms the core of the terminal, I like the big windows, I like how it’s kind of like an old time train station.
The American Airlines section is a little weird. You have to take a bus to get to another section of the terminal to get the flights to Rochester and Buffalo. It’s unclear that you have to do this, as it seems as if all you need to do is walk a little way to your specified gate.
As I was walking to where I could get the bus I watched as the guy from the beginning of this story stepped up to a bar and ordered another beer. Apparently, he was going to make it 88 hours of straight drinking.
He didn’t make his flight.