Shae O’Brien – Bengals Contributor
I have been putting off this letter for a long time, but I think it’s only right that I be honest with you. I just can’t do this anymore. I tried to ignore it for the last few months, tried to remember all the reasons you and I make sense together. We grew up together. My family loves you. We’re both from the same city. But I can’t help but admit the truth. I don’t feel that passion for you, that devotion and loyalty, that excitement when I see you. It’s not you, I promise. It’s me. I just can’t pretend anymore. It isn’t fair to either of us.
The truth is, I’ve found someone else. At first it was just innocent glances at scores on ESPN. Putting A.J. Green in for fantasy football games. Soon, I started noticing if they were on at the bar when I went to see you. I kept telling myself that looking isn’t cheating, that I was wearing your colors and supporting your games. But even my friends started to notice that I’d changed. I would sit closer to their TV. I would forget to look over at your score. I would cheer when they got a touchdown or caught an interception. I started learning more about them online, and even followed them on Twitter. For the last few months I’ve been trying to tell myself that it was nothing, just a flirtation. But it isn’t just that. It’s something more. I want to wear orange and black jerseys, talk smack about their opponents, and cheer when they make it to the playoffs.
I want to be a Cincinnati Bengal.
I know it isn’t logical, but it’s love. I won’t deny it any longer or lead you on for another season. I’m sorry for hurting you, but you’ll find other fans. You’ve been a great team, and I will always think back on our memories with joy. I wish you the best.
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