Rider Pride And The 2010 Grey Cup
It’s the weekend of the CFL’s 2010 Grey Cup; a rematch of last year’s championship between the Saskatchewan Roughriders and the Montreal Alouettes. This year, the Grey Cup is being played in Edmonton.
Now, I’ve been in the stands in Commonwealth Stadium when Saskatchewan rolled into town against the Eskimos and the attendance swelled from the average 29,780 to 47,829. The likeliest scenario is that more than one third of fans in attendance were full of Rider Pride. This meant that over 18,000 Roughrider fans made the pilgrimage from the ‘Old Country’ to Edmonton to watch their football team play. And this was a regular season game. Picture Edmonton with the Rider Pride rolling into town because of the Grey Cup.
To say it gets crazy when the Saskatchewan Roughriders come to town would be an understatement.
Getting a basic understanding of a Riders fan isn’t difficult; you really need to go no further than the internet. However, to help out, I’ve chosen several Riders fans photos from a quick search to demonstrate a typical fan to those who may not have ever seen this phenomenon in person. Besides their fanatical dedication to their team, they are also known for their small town attitudes and are stereotyped as lovers of Pilsner beer.
To get on with my story, I headed out to a nearby liquor store to grab some beer for the evening and as I pulled into the parking lot, a white crew-cab truck pulled in and parked. I watched as six large men stepped out of the truck, all of them wearing the emerald green home jersey of the Saskatchewan Roughriders. I wanted to perform a bit of a social test of the whole ‘Riders fan loves Pilsner’ stereotype for my own interest so I lagged behind a little and observed.
Two of them briefly lingered by the vodka shelf before following the other four guys headed for the beer cooler. I followed and casually observed them head to the domestic beer section. I was on the other side of the beer cooler mulling over my options at the import beer shelf, keeping one eye on the six Riders fans.
Half of the motley crew left around the same time I did and the other half remained in the beer cooler for a little while longer. At the end of the day, all six of these Riders fans ended up at the till while I was still there. Five of the six of them ended up with a box of Pilsner beer with the sixth being the rogue of the bunch and carrying a 24 can box of Wildcat Strong.
So what does this mean? It’s hard to say, really.
One could also say that five out of six Riders fans prefer Pilsner to Wildcat Strong, however I don’t feel this is truly a scientific conclusion. My main thought revolves around whether a stereotype is actually a stereotype if it’s true. Because, in this case, I’d say that it is.