Commentary Yinzerism/Pittsburgh Advocacy

I Love The Steelers Throwback Unis (Am I Alone?)

bumbles 1As you probably know by now, I’m a big, big Pittsburgh Steelers fan, raised during the glory years of the 1970s, when I would watch the greatest team in the history of football with my grandmother, tall glasses of ginger ale (mine was just ginger ale, at least), and a bag of Ruffles potato chips (no pierogies for me: Mum-Mum didn’t cook much, and she certainly wouldn’t have cooked immigrant food). There are a million stories like mine in Westsylvania, kids who were, if not wired at conception for Steelers fanaticism, cetainly programmed in vitro to respond to all things black and gold with an elevated pulse, heightened respiration, and occasional bouts of Tourettes-like Suishamresponses to underwhelming performances, unreasonable suspicion of head coaches’ mental acuity, and inexplicable affection for back-up quarterbacks.

This isn’t funny at all.

I talk about the Steelers as “we,” not “they.” I cried in front of my friends when the Steelers outplayed the Chargers in the 1994 AFC Championship only to lose on the last play of the game. I own about six Terrible Towels.  I have even been known, on occasion, to drink Iron City Beer.  On purpose–though this isn’t as impressive as it sounds, as cheap beer goes it beats the hell out of trendy PBR.

But I digress–It never fails to surprise me, each time the team dusts off it’s “throwback” uniforms, how much antipathy rises from the faithful.  Steelers fans are deeply sentimental, until they aren’t–and it’s tough to guess when or over what–or whom–they will turn cold.  They are Lloydknowledgeable–a Pittsburgh Nana is apt to know more about the virtues of zone blitzes and mixed coverages than most high school coaches in weird places like Iowa,  New England, or Richmond, Virginia.  They are passionate, opinionated, and stubborn, but the distaste for these uniforms is overwhelming.  I understand that the regular uniforms are among the most iconic in professional sports, but there’s no call for all the “bumblebee” and “jailbreak” cracks.

Anyone out there agree with me?  Anyone besides me like the stripes?


By JunkChuck

Native, Militant Westsylvanian (the first last best place), laborer, gardener, and literary hobbyist (if by literary you mean "hack"). I've had a bunch of different blogs, probably four, due to a recurring compulsion to start over. This incarnation owes to a desire to dredge up the best entries of the worst little book of hand-scrawled poems I could ever dream of writing, salvageable excerpts from fiction both in progress and long-abandoned. and a smattering of whatever the hell seems to fit at any particular moment. At first blush, I was here just to focus on old, terrible verse, but I reserve the right to include...anything. Maybe everything, certainly my love of pulp novels, growing garlic, the Pittsburgh Steelers and howling at the moon--both figuratively and, on rare occasions, literally.

3 replies on “I Love The Steelers Throwback Unis (Am I Alone?)”

I struggle with this one. I, too, grew up in the 70s, but not in Pennsylvania. Still, growing up in Northern California, the 49ers were horrible then, the Raiders were evil, and I needed a team. I’ve followed the Steelers ever since, even if it’s from the opposite end of the country. Because they have been so consistently competitive, except for a couple of years here and there, and what appears to be their third year of .500 mediocrity, it has been easy to maintain that fandom. They will always be my favorite NFL team and the one I live and die by more than any other.

The uniforms though … I just don’t know. I don’t hate them. I don’t love them. But, I’m generally not a fan of the whole throwback uniform idea anyway.


I completely agree! I love them too! Whenever I speak that remark, I get the “oohhhhhh” groan. In fact, I typed in this search “love Steelers throwback uniform” to find someone who agrees and that’s how I landed here! Thank you, we will succeed in changing those naysayers….


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