Friday, June 16, 2006

Species of The Raider Nation

How did you become a Raiders fan? Were you born with a silver (and black) spoon in your mouth? Or were you born again, cleansed of past sins such as rooting for the 49ers? I believe that the Raider Nation is not only a family, but also a genus, and within each genus there are species. This belief was sparked by Raiderdecoachella (a.k.a. Miguel, father of Michael Raider), who planted the seed for this particular take. He has a great story about how he became a Raiders fan.

And so I ask: How did you become a Raiders fan? What species are you? Please refer to my Naturalist's Guide to The Raider Nation below. Identify yourself by species, and tell us your story (click here for my story, I'm an inheritor by species). Keep it short and sweet if possible, and let it rip in the comments section. I look forward to your testimony.

A Naturalist’s Guide to The Raider Nation

The Inheritor
The inheritor grew up in a Raiders household, mentored by a father and/or older brother (or mother or uncle, etc.). The Raider Way was passed down to you. You may have strayed, but never far. And now you are doing your forefathers proud, and possibly nurturing a third generation in matters of pride, poise and excellence.

The Lifer
This is like prison, but with a happy ending. You didn’t have any mentors. You got started early. It was something innate, of your own volition. It grew over time. Pretty soon, you were in it for life. You really didn’t have a choice, did you?

The Silver & Black Sheep
Were you raised in a sea of red and gold or blue and orange, only to find your true calling in the Raider Nation from day one? The Silver & Black sheep merits specials praise, as he or she has snubbed the peer pressure of friends and family, all in a commitment to excellence. Even in places like Denver and Kansas City, these black sheep strut confidently about town in their Raiders gear, unpopular yet righteous, like missionaries in hostile territory.

The Traider
Unlike being a traitor, there is no shame in being a “traider.” A traider is someone who, for whatever reason (dysfunctional family, bad influences, geographic insulation, substance abuse, etc.) once rooted for a lame team such as the Dolphins or Chargers before seeing the light. Do not look back, traiders! Do not make excuses. Your sins are forgiven.

The Rookie
Who cares if you think that the Mad Bomber is Ted Kaczynski and that Frenchy Fuqua is a type of coffee? You’re a young or newer football fan, and you’ve decided that the Oakland Raiders are your team, and that’s all that matters. You don’t need to be an expert to be a fan. Citizenship in the Raider Nation is free, no questions asked. Knowledge will come in time. It's the heart that matters.

The Prodigal Child
Have you given up on the Raiders? If so, why are you reading Raider Take? I know why: because you haven’t really given up. Sure, you’re still bitter about the move to Los Angeles, or the PSLs, or something else. Well, just give it some more time, and keep hanging around these parts. You’ll look in the mirror someday, at that Steelers or Panthers hat atop your noggin, and realize that you’ve been living a lie. You still bleed silver and black. You’ll be back. You know the door is
always open.

109 Comments:

Blogger allan said...

I would guess I'm a lifer. I am a huge Crimson Tide fan and when Kenny Stabler became a Raider my loyalty went with him and it's been there since. Go Raiders!!! and Roll Tide!!!!!

4:15 AM  
Anonymous Mad Stork 83 said...

I'm a lifer, or maybe a sheep. I've lived in NJ my whole life and fell in love with the '76 team when I was 8 years old. Before you know it I was walking the halls in school proudly wearing Silver and Black, even in high school when the Giants finally had some success. It didn't hurt that my mom's uncle moved to northern California in the late 70's, and came back with Art Shell and Gene Upshaw football cards for me, telling my dad "you've never seen an offensive line this big in your life!"

5:42 AM  
Anonymous SabreRaider said...

I am a combination Lifer, been a fan since I was little, we both came into the world the same year. I fell in love with The Mad Bomber, Daryle Lamonica. I could be a blacksheep in that my father was a cards fan, and the state tried to shove both the falcons and the fins down my throat.

I just loved the long ball! And the tenacity of the defense.

6:12 AM  
Blogger Peter Fleming said...

Silver and Black Sheep -
I grew up in a football "non-fan" house. My Dad wasn't a true fan of any one team or sport, but did appreciate the Shula Dolphins of the 70's. Growing up in NY where it was all Giants or Jets . . well, they just weren't an option, especially the Jets (the Giants I kinda respect). But, occasionally on TV I'd see highlights of this "Raiders" team. Pirates in Black playing REAL football.

I was hooked.

6:21 AM  
Blogger IndyRaider said...

According to your definitions I'm a "Traider" but I jokingly refer to myself as a "Bandwagon Fan". I jumped on the Raider bandwagon back in 1981 after they won the Superbowl against the Redskins and I've never jumped off!

6:24 AM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

I'm an inheritor. I was born in Oakland, and grew up in LA. Before the Raiders made the move down to LA, my dad and I would sit with each other and watch the Raiders (hated the Lambs, Dunder Dolts, 40-Whiners; and still do). Dad gave me the "history lesson" of the Raiders. My first game I truly remember watching was 1980 MNF vs the Squeelers, or what the official Raiders' website refers to as "Monday Night Mayhem." My first actual game was the 1984 AFC Championship game between the Raiders-Seahawks. My fav player is Howie Long (hence 75 at the end of my name). I'm a Raider for life, and though I grew up in LA, my heart is for the true Raider Nation, the OAKLAND RAIDERS!!!

6:39 AM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

IndyRaider, the Raiders beat the Skins in 1984 for the Super Bowl. They beat the Eagles in 1980 for the Super Bowl.

6:41 AM  
Anonymous DCRAIDER said...

Ha Ha! long time reader, first time poster.
Proud Silver and Black Sheep!
I was 6 years old. It was christmas morning, my grandmother (the cheapest woman in history) had bought my older brother a subscription to Sports Illistrated for Christmas. I recieved a movie called NFL Crunch Course you know the free gift that comes with the subscription. Anyway the movie featured segments on Walter Payton, Larry Csonka, and other amazing players. Then came the LA Raiders, and a feature piece on Howie Long. I was hooked, the Raiders were like football rock stars. 20 years later I'm 100x the fan I was... I really hope we get mean again, because that's what I fell in love with.

6:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a cross between a Lifer and an Inheritor. Dad wasn't a true fan but took us to a few games in L.A. when Bo played. He said he took me to Charger games as a baby and I was once a Charger fan, but I refuse to accept it. Fortunately I chose the right path in life at a young age and it's grown into a monster. It was the cool colors, bad attitudes, and great fans that did it for me. Learning about the game and Raider history is topping on the cake. F the rest.

Psycho

6:46 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

This is cool, so far we've got a lifer, a black sheep, a couple of lifer/black sheep hybrids, a lifer/inheritor hybrid, one traider and two inheritors, counting myself. We are mapping the natural world of the Raider Nation, so that future generations might understand the evolution of the genus. It is a noble cause. Keep 'em coming!

6:48 AM  
Blogger Foust said...

I think I'm a lifer. Watched the Heidi Game with my dad, because I was waiting for Heidi to come on (give me a break here--I was an 8 year old girl. We're supposed to want to watch Heidi!), but found the football to be much more engrossing. I was livid when they left the game--and more livid when the score was shown and I saw how much we had missed by leaving the game! Have bled Silver & Black ever since.

7:00 AM  
Anonymous Sasori said...

I lived in Bezerkly when I was a kid and I am BLESSED!! I started at the age of 8 when I saw cartoons on the green sheet (sports page). Showed the Raiders all swashbuckling and looking baaaad and facing for example the 9'rs looking like miners. Of course, on Monday we were all tore up. I guess I never had a choice!! Thank God!! I could picked another team. There is only one team, and then there is the rest of the league. It is us against them, it will always be us against them, and they can kiss our ***!!! Oh, I forgot to put in the year--it was the first one 1960. Never change, always be true, even thru 13 year road trips and back again!!
FOREVER--RAIDERS--FOREVER

7:01 AM  
Anonymous Sasori said...

Oh, I forgot. It just really ticks me off, steeler nation, bronco nation and all the rest of those unimaganitve jerks. We were the first, best, and last. If they want call themselves nations, they should be honest, and call them selves 3rd world nations.
Sorry about the post, Raider Take, I know it doesn't fit, but I couldn't help myself

7:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lifer, plain and simple.

Those who know me refer to me as Raider Lifer.

7:16 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Foust, what a great story!

Sasori, no problem, it's been bugging me, too. With all this Big Ben news lately, I keep hearing the media refer to the "Steeler Nation." Say what!?

7:25 AM  
Anonymous LK said...

Definite lifer. I remember seeing the Raiders on TV for the first time when I was seven or eight...and felt instantly "connected"; like it was supposed to be that way....and I grew up in NYC all around Jets and Giants fans. In December 1970 my mom somehow scored 3 SRO tickets to Raiders-Jets at Shea. I was 12 then and already a diehard. It was about 10 degrees and well below zero wind chill [those of you who saw football at Shea know the SRO section was in the open end of the horseshoe and the wind whips thru there]. Mom was neutral and my brother and I proudly flew the colors...couple drunk guys in front of us gave us a hard time all game. They left with the Jets up with about two minutes left and told my mom "lady, this one's over, you better get these kids out of here before they freeze to death". She said "you drunk bastards mind your business and keep moving" {OK, she didn't say that. She said "we're staying". Even better.] You all know the story. Warren Wells makes what John Madden still calls "the best catch I've ever seen" in the corner of the EZ. We win--poor fellas had to hear it on the radio. Thirty six years later, bro and I still fly the flag in enemy arenas with regularity...still feel the same connection that caught me when I was seven.

7:32 AM  
Blogger oakzombie said...

i'd say i'm a "inheritor" because of my uncle who is a "lifer". at a very young age about 6 maybe my father was trying to make me a redskins fan ( i was born in maryland) and my uncle on my moms side was a raider fan and he knew what my dad was doing so he decided he would sit the kids down and show them raider games from the past few years he was able to tape on a vcr when they did show games on the east coast (this was the early 80's). well i liked what i saw and the colors just blew me away and their was NO WAY IN HELL i was going to be a redskins fan after what i saw in those games. so 25 years later i've never pulled for another team and now my 2 year old son will know the greatness of the raider nation as i have grown to love over the years. so thank god my uncle was there to sway me to join the dark side or i might be some pansy ass fan rooting for some lame team in the nfc.

7:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A lifer. I watched my first football game on TV at the age of 5. It was the 1976 AFC Championship game. I can still hear Curt Gowdy say about Stabler, "Stabler comes to the line, man is he cool." The Superbowl was that year, shortly thereafter, Star Wars came out and Darth Vader was instantly my favorite character. I think there must be some connection because it all just fit and I was hooked. Living in Montana, we don't have any "team" so there were plenty of other Raider fans in my grade school. I've never left (though I was steamed over the Marcus Allen debacle).

7:40 AM  
Blogger Rum Runner said...

I'm a lifer. My dad was a Dolphins fan, but he wasn't a diehard. My first NFL gear was a Rams uniform with the shoulder pads, helmet, and such. The first game that I saw was on the toob while my dad was watching the Dolhpins play the Raiders. I idolized my dad, but as I watched I couldn't help but root for the Silver and Black. Finally, with less than a minute to go and down by four, the snake tossed the ball to Branch who took it to the house. I was jumping up and down running around with both arms swung up in victory and I've been hooked ever since.

I guess you could say that I've been given every opportunity to NOT be a die-hard, but inately I found home.

One other thing, those punks that have started labeling thier fanbases with 'Nation' need to just STOP. I could've died when I heard the 'Nation' being used to refer to Clipper fans this year.

8:20 AM  
Blogger frkyraider said...

hmmm,....i guess i'd be a silver and blacksheep lifer. when i was 4 or 5 my dad was a big football fan, we lived in lots of different places while i was growing up, so "we" had many favorite teams in my, packers, jets, dolfins, and finally the seahawks. in 1970 there is a horrid picture of me (that i destroyed a few years ago) of me at 6 years old wearing (embarrassed to say it) new york jets jammies. from that year till now i loved the RAIDERS. regaurdless of who my dad tried to sell me on, i always loved the silver and black. he tried and tried to convert me. when we finally settled in seattle (i was in third grade) he bought season tickets to the seahawks. my football life blossomed.

my father finally relented 5 or 6 years into the tickets when i told him and i quote, "dad, i like the seahawks, but i'm a loyal kind of football fan, and i have loved my RAIDERS for much much longer than there has ever been seahawks." from that day forward he has accepted and at times i feel respected my love for my team.

every day when i wake up and get dressed i think to myself, what RAIDER gear am i sporting today? this year for my 40th birthday i bought myself the best RAIDER present i've ever worn. i had my colors put on my arm for all to see, regaurdless of the gear i'm wearing. best 300 bucks i ever spent. yeah, silver and blacksheep lifer, it's got a certain ring to it don't it?

8:47 AM  
Blogger taughtbyking said...

Lifer. I never watched football on TV during my earliest years. I could usually be found playing touch football in the park with friends on Sunday. But one friend always brought a transistor radio along, and we'd hear Bill King doing the play by play of the Raider game while we played.

When things would get exciting on the radio, our ball would be dropped somewhere on the field, and friends would huddle around the radio. I heard the Heidi game in this fashion.

It didn't take long for me to want to see what I was hearing on the radio, and started rescheduling touch football for times when the Raiders weren't playing. But even with the TV on, I had Bill King turned up on the radio. In that fashion, Bill taught me everything I know about football. "Holy Toledo!"

From there, I saw them all. The immaculate reception. The Holy Roller. The Sea of Hands. Stabler coming from 28 points behind to beat the Saints on Monday night.

After graduating college, I moved to Los Angeles. Two years later, the Raiders followed me there. I got sick of LA and moved back home. Two years later, the Raiders followed me back. I can't leave them, they can't leave me. I'm a Silver and Blacker for life.

8:53 AM  
Blogger SmokinJay said...

I would be a lifer. My family weren't football fans. In 1978, in third grade I had a choice. The teacher held out 26 football pencils. The class screamed for me to pick the cowboys, (they were going to the superbowl that year?) But the draw to that silver and black pencil was too strong. It was a few more years before I really watched the games, but never chose another team.

8:54 AM  
Anonymous Tim Mo said...

--Silver & Black Sheep--

I grew up in Minnesota, lived in Minnesota, spent all my life there until recently moving out for college in Illinois. I was a Vikes fan, a die-hard Vikes fan, and I still like the Vikings today. Just not as much as the Raiders.

It was the Vikings home opener, year 1999. They were playing the Raiders and I couldn't care less, I just wanted to watch some football. What I saw was amazing. The score didn't reflect, but Oakland ruled the game. Gannon's first game as a Raider. He was wise, efficient, smart, and fun to like. James Jett was flying, as was Tim Brown. Napolean Kaufmann was going wild and they were working so effectively that at halftime, I thought it would be fun to "cheer" them on since they were obviously playing better than the Vikings. My family didn't find it amusing, but I wasn't doing it for real.

After the game, and a Raiders win, I got the Raiders press book thing from my dad because he always gets one because he sits in the press box. So I read through the whole thing on the drive home and was fascinated. Maybe this is a team I can really get into, I thought.

And sure enough, it was.

The next time the Vikings played the Raiders was a few years ago in the BLACK HOLE when Philly Bew returned Daunte's first pass all the way for a TD!!! Since then, Philly Bew is gone to Houston, Daunte is gone to Miami and

RANDY MOSS IS A RAIDER!!!!!!!

9:09 AM  
Anonymous 1Raider18 said...

Inheritor here. My dad liked them and as a kid those silver and black jersey's were cool!!! And intimidating!!! I never knew it would be an obsession one day.

My son and myself sport the number 18 of Moss. He is a third generation Raider fan, even half way around the world in London.

September 11th, stateside, Sept. 12th at 7:00 AM (here) I will be watching us demolish the bolts. Already put the request in at work.

9:17 AM  
Blogger IndyRaider said...

Thanks Raider Nate 75 (senior moment) I know was in 81 I just got my Superbowls mixed up.

9:36 AM  
Anonymous BULLDARAIDER said...

I WAS BORN IN 83. THAT MAEKES ME A LIFER, BUT A STRONG INHERITOR. I USE TO ROOT AGAINST THE RAIDERS WHEN I WAS YOUNGER TO PISS MY UNCLES OFF, BUT I HAVE ALWAYS BLEAD SILVER & BLACK. I WENT TO A GAME @ THE L.A COLLISEUM AND IT WAS GREAT. I'LL NEVER FORGET IT!

9:44 AM  
Anonymous raider00 said...

I'll never forget. I was 9 yrs old, my older brother went out bowling with his friends. I was hanging around the house, bored, nothing to do. I put on the T.V. and came across a football game between the Raiders, and Dolphins. I had watched some football before, but not with much interest, I was more of a Baseball, and Hockey fan at this point.
To make a long story short, the game turned out to be the famous "Sea of Hands" game. What a game, what a win, what a team !! I was hooked for life on the Silver, & Black.

10:09 AM  
Blogger Rebel Raider said...

Lifer.
Born in Atlanta and raised here. Realized early there wasn't a 'real NFL team' here. Watched the the Raiders first Super Bowl in '68 against the Puckers when I was 6. Now I am UGA Bulldawg fan and it was tough looking at that 'G' on the side of the helments in black and white. While watching the game, and we did lose, I couldn't help seeing that never say die play and the men under those 'Pirate' helments. My dad told me they were Raiders. Well dang tooting what 6 year old couldn't be a Raider! I ran around the next couple of days saying I was a Raider. Sort of will my way in you see. how blessed I was to be in High School and College in the late 70's and early 80's. Bet my whole dorm (70 guys) the Raiders were going to clip the fEagles in the Super Bowl.... funny I was the only one watching in the TV room after half time. Had to buy a keg later on the week for the dorm so folks would start speaking to me again. Wrote Oakland Raiders on each cup I poured though.

10:28 AM  
Anonymous horsecollarjack said...

Sadly, a Traider...Since I was born and raised in Northern Ireland, the choice of football teams was open...And one of my mentors growing up turned me on to the Dolphins! Ack! After I visited the HOT in 2001, I saw the error of my ways.

10:29 AM  
Blogger Roy said...

I guess I would have to be 1/2 inheritor and 1/2 lifer. Born and raised in the East Bay my entire family (except 2) are Raider fans. Watching the 84 superbowl as a child just pushed me over the edge. After that game I took it too another level sometimes bordering on an unhealthy obsession with the Oakland Raiders (complete with my Raiders tatoo).

10:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was six in 76. With guys like "The Snake", "The Assassin", "Dr Death", "Stork", and "Tooz" - it made a huge impression on me. Interestingly enough, my father wasnt into football. I picked it up at 6 years old, all by myself. I didnt choose the Raiders - THE RAIDERS CALLED ME HOME. SILVER AND BLACK TILL THE DAY I DIE

BUMPNRUN

10:33 AM  
Blogger The Analyzer said...

I liked their colors and attitude when I was a kid and after I started watching them, I was hooked.

Oakland Raiders Analysis

10:35 AM  
Anonymous KarmaZone said...

Call me a Lifer. I grew up in West Tenneessee (Pre St. Louis Rams and pre Tennessee Titans), so we didn't really have a team to follow. My dad has always been a Packers fan, but he didn't try to sway me or my brother. The first game that I remember seeing was the 1991 playoff game where Bo got injured. I mainly liked the colors at the time, but once I saw the history I was hooked. I live down near ATL now, but I still root hard for the Silver and Black.

10:35 AM  
Anonymous RaiderBoo said...

My father was a long time Bear fan but he liked the Raiders as his AFL team so when that year they beat the Vikings when I was 10 that's the season I became a Raider.

10:44 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

This is from Raiderdecoachella via email:

I was brought to the U.S. from Mexico when I was 12, I was a very active kid, I played all sports, when I was a Junior in High School I decided to try for the my school's football team, I ended up making the varsity team as a kicker, I figured that my senior year I was going to need to understand the game to be a better player, I started watching professional football in '78 and I didn't even know anything about names or cities, but I did know that every time that the silver and black would play they would always attract my attention, I remember Plunkett, Marcus, Howie, but I don't remember people from before, I loved Bo, and Tim, I got married and after 3 beautiful daughters, god decided to give me a son as my fourth kid and I knew right there and then that he was going to have a special name, "Michael Raider" there was no other name for that beautiful son of mine, I have or would like to think that I have influenced all of my family (over 30 members strong) to be Raider's fans, all my brothers, nephews, brother-in-laws, and any family members they have to be Raider's fans to be a part of my family, life is good being a good citizen and a Raider's fan is very important, I have never met a bad Raider's fan, all Raider's fans that I have met are good people that are always eagered to help other people.
Thank you, Raider take, you are my only source of Raider's info, I don't go looking anywhere else for Raider's info because there are so many morons like Jay Mohr that do not give us clean info, you do, don't give up I thank you the "the Raider nation" thanks you and it is an honor to sometimes be able to write a couple of words in your site.

11:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I came from Sri Lanka with my family in 1973. Huge rugby fan and the only team that played with passion, heart and with a rugby persona were the Raiders. Instantly found my team. Used to actually kneel and pray that Blanda would make the field goal, while watching on the black and white tv.

11:49 AM  
Anonymous Raider Greg said...

Best fan take.............EVER! Perfection is a word I rarely use but this take is as close as you can get. Fans should know this is the Raider Nation and all that anyone needs to do is look at the crowd at any game at Oaktown.
Well done!

12:09 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

This in from Richard Bentley via email:

Lifer? Used to follow the Packers. Then when the NFL played games when Kennedy was assassinated, plus not giving the AFL scores (the AFL gave the NFL scores), and finally when Lomabardi did his superbowl sneer, I said f*** you - and Al Davis and the Raiders had something special - so since 1967 have been a Raiders fan, through thick and thin; with some level of despondency...One other thing; Bill King was to me the best play-by-play guy in both basketball and football. How I used to love listening to him when he did the games in LA until that station schmuck fired him.

1:10 PM  
Anonymous krat100 said...

borned and raised in the heart land of texas in 1962. by 69 fell in love with the silver and black at 12 i wore raider shirt, jacket and hat to school fought cowboys and cowpaddy fan all my life never lost a fight to a redneck my family and friends said hes weird and diffrent and i would say yes i am a raider!!!!!

1:29 PM  
Blogger R8RCat said...

Love your "take", Raider Take! I would be best described as an Inheritor - My mother is actually the biggest fan I know!

There I was, this free-spirit, RaiderFan, drifting throughout RaiderNation, when my parents slammed fuzzies and WHAM! Nine months later, there I was, Raider fan incarnate, flopping around the Oakland Civic Center Hospital. So, okay, I was born a Raider fan in November of '63.

My dad re-enlisted in the Marine Corps when I was 5 (SEMPER FI!) and we’d moved from Hayward to Tucson, AZ. I recall catching parts of games back in ’69. Back then, there was no NFL in AZ, so most people related to the Cowboys, including my best buddy. A year or two later I asked my pop to allow me to be a Cowboy fan (okay, so what the hell did I know...? I was only 7!), he simply stated, “No son of mine will EVER be a Cowboy fan!” And the rest, well, is history. Been fighting with the haters ever since – why can’t those FOOLS get a life! But, whenever I encounter fans of the RaiderNation wherever I may be, WOW! What camaraderie!

I’ve since lived in Hawaii, and up and down the great state of California (including the Heart of RaiderNation - Alameda).

1:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess I'm an inheritor or a lifer. Growing up out here in Bodega Bay, my next door neighbors - kind of my honorary aunt and uncle - were big Raider fans and I started watching them at about the age of 6. Went to Chico State in the mid to late 80s and EVERYONE up there was a 9ers fan, made me proud to be a Raider (other than that whole Jay Shroeder thing). Moved to LA in '93 and watched the Raidahs from there. Now I'm back in Bodega Bay. I've converted my Mother, many (now) ex-girlfriends and quite a few friends.

Go Raiders!

Any Raider Abalone divers out there? email me at: navats@comcast.net

1:41 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

I am literally blown away by all of these stories...What a magnificent day here at Raider Take! THANK YOU ALL! Please keep 'em coming, this is going to be filed under Most Popular Takes on the home page for the sake of posterity.

R8rcat, you are your own species as a self-proclaimed Raider BEFORE birth! I believe it, too, based on your testimony.

Thanks, Raider Greg!

2:27 PM  
Blogger frkyraider said...

lmao, THE nation sounds off!!

2:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

====Inheritor===
As I tell everyone who asks, I was born and hell-raised into TheRaiderNation, and I wouldnt change it for the world. I rememeber my first beer at a very young age. It was my reward for The Raiders beating Buffalo and making the playoffs. I got the worst headache of my young life but I was drunk with passion for My Raiders. My Dad gave me that beer (Budweiser if you care) and I think he knew that even though his own brother would make countless efforts to win me over to the Phins (Starter Jacket, Caps, T-shirts) I would always be a die hard Raider. Now its my Honor and Pleasure to Hell-Raise an 8 yo and a 4 yo into that great family that is THERAIDERNATION. My youngest wants to be like Robert Gallery, and with a new addition coming, Im hoping for a Raiderette! Inheritor, Lifer, Die Hard RAIDER!! EaMadden06(RaydersOnly) RaiderDan Jr.-L.A. Ca.

3:36 PM  
Anonymous John Robinson said...

My earliest Raiders memory was beating the Dolphins in 73, after all the band-wagoners in Trenton were convinced they were invincible. I was seven. My team didn't have to be the best, they just had to beat the best. The Raiders never failed to put some pretty faces in the mud. I guess that makes me a lifer.

4:55 PM  
Anonymous SilverEye said...

Lifer for sure. I surpassed my dad and his friends (who had season tickets) by the age of 7. Never missed a game 'til I was a teenager. That's why the first tattoo had to be a raider. I feel like I have family EVERYWHERE.

5:00 PM  
Anonymous radrnation in modesto said...

LIFER BABY!!!! with no hope or need of parole. was a problem child when young (real young)remember liking hells angels too. To me raiders where just like them but with pads. every one just seemed to get the f**k out of their way. RAIDERS rule the world

5:14 PM  
Blogger js said...

I'm a mixture of two, actually. My dad is something of a Raiders fan, and gave me my first Raider pennant back in 1976. (He'd gone to see a game because it was a convention event.) We were living in Houston at the time, where it was mostly Oiler fans. Since then we lived briefly in Los Angeles, but left before the Raiders arrived, and spent the next six years in Utah, which is nominally Bronco country because those were the only games available on NBC. After that, we moved to the Pacific Northwest among Seahawks fans. So I'm both an Inheritor and a Silver & Black Sheep.

8:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Southern lifer...born and raised in South Carolina. Became a Raider fan watching Stabler and Casper crush Minnesota in the Super Bowl. Never looked back.

9:10 PM  
Anonymous Raider Greg's Wife said...

Dear RT,

Another incredible "take"!

My love of football and all things NFL started at the age of 9 when my dad sat on the floor with a big chalkboard and taught me about the gridiron.

He was a passionate L.A. Ram fan and passed that along to me.

I enjoyed many a Ram/Raider game in Los Angeles.

I always felt bad for the Oakland fans without their team. I knew moving them was wrong.

And then my team deserted me.....won a super bowl and never thanked me for my loyalty....

I always liked the mystique of the Silver and Black and adopted the Raiders for me.

It is an awesome experience to live where your team is......

Raaaaaaai-derrrrrrrrrsssss!

10:04 PM  
Anonymous RaiderSteve said...

Guess I would be considered a "traider"... Started watching football in the late 70's (I was about 10) and liked the Cowboys. Hell, they were the popular team back then, and what the hell did I know at that age? But the Raiders moved to LA in '82, and being a SoCal resident (born and raised till age 35), I gravitated toward them, especially since they drafted some dude named Marcus Allen. Anyway, I officially adopted them as my favorite team in '83, watched them destroy the Squeelers, Seac*cks and Deadskins in the postseason, and have been hooked ever since. Living in Seattle now for the last two years among the Seac*ck bandwagoners, but I sport my gear (and my tat on the left forearm) PROUDLY, and take no sh*t from any of these yayhoos... RAIDER NATION 4 LIFE!!!

12:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Job transfer from LA to Oakland in 1976. Started attending games, met some of the team members. That was it.

5:56 AM  
Anonymous Stick'em said...

Lifer.

Some of my earliest childhood memories include the Raiders. I remember watching a game and asking my father, "Why are those big pirate men beating up on the poor purple guys so bad?"

The "pirate men" were Art Shell and Gene Upshaw, and the "purple guys" were Jim Marshall and Alan Page.

Been a huge fanatic for the Raiders and O-linemen ever since...

That year for Xmas, my parents mistook my love for the Raiders for a general interest in football. They had my aunt (who lived in Ohio) buy me a little Cinncinnati Bengals uniform.

When they put it on me to take pictures for my aunt, I remeber to this day how that jersey burned like fire. Their helmet said B-E-N-G-A-L-S on the side in those days and refused to let them get it on my head.

Just ike Ralphie and the pink bunny suit
.

Never willingly worn a piece of gear from any other NFL team nor cheered for one in my life.

9:31 AM  
Anonymous Plataynegro said...

Inheritor - I was 6 years old, living in Oakland, playing with my blocks and (though I didn't know the significance of it then) Super Bowl II was on the TV in the background. I asked my Dad why he was so quiet - he didn't answer. My mom told me who was playing and asked me who I wanted to win. I looked at my blocks and said, "The Packers." (it seemed to fit) The disgust that appeared on my Dad's face was scary. I never made that mistake again. Raiders Forever!!!

11:16 AM  
Anonymous memdf said...

Lifer starting with Super Bowl II! Looking over the comments brings back lots of memories. Mine include going through the neighbor's garbage when I was 12
because he told me there was a picture of Ken Stabler in the sports section he threw out (Raider photos are still rare in Chicago newspapers, this was 1972?). I still have the picture in a scrapbook I made at the time. Taking one of my dad's t-shirts and with black marker making it into a Biletnikoff jersey, complete with the sleeves cut. Still as a kid, crying inconsolably after the immaculate screw job thinking nothing could hurt this much. Then feeling and doing the same after the tuck at the age of 41. Breathlessy telling my wife that I had discovered “Raider Take” and her responding with "Oh great, more crazies that think there's a conspiracy!" Looking forward to the memories yet to come!

3:19 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

Cheers to RT for this post which shows off the diverse S&B faithful.

I guess I would be a hybrid between traider + Silver and Black sheep.

My dad was a season ticket holder/LA Rams fan. He would take each of his 3 sons to 1 Ram home game each season. As I got a little older (maybe age 8 circa 1972) I gravitated towards my uncle's favorite team, the Raiders.

The Raiders uniform, logo, and colorful outlaw characters from the early 70's drew me in and I have never looked back since.

Footnote: I must confess that my 1st poster that I put up in my room was of Rams QB Roman Gabriel.

3:31 PM  
Anonymous Charles Oakey said...

I would have to say I'm a lifer having attended the first Oakland Raider game ever played, July 31, 1960, at Kezar Stadium in San Francisco.

Then again I was born before the Oakland Raiders were.

5:20 PM  
Anonymous Sec 137 said...

RT - Great subject....perfection indeed.

I'm 99% Lifer. I believe silver and black was in my blood at birth.

I'm grew up in Santa Rosa, CA (north bay area for those of you out of state) which is where the Raider's training camp used to be before the move down to L.A....El Rancho Tropicana Hotel on Santa Rosa Ave.!!!

1% Black Sheep because my family were niner season ticket holders, so my second favorite team was whoever the niners played.

Now I'm privaleged enough to be a Raider's season ticket holder...can't wait for San Diego to come into town.

To Anonymous 1:41 p.m., I'm not much of an abolone diver, but I've gone many times with my dad to the backdoor of Jenner....lot's of great memories of huge abs and great dinners afterwards.

10:38 PM  
Anonymous Sec 137 said...

RT - Great subject....perfection indeed.

I'm 99% Lifer. I believe silver and black was in my blood at birth.

I'm grew up in Santa Rosa, CA (north bay area for those of you out of state) which is where the Raider's training camp used to be before the move down to L.A....El Rancho Tropicana Hotel on Santa Rosa Ave.!!!

1% Black Sheep because my family were niner season ticket holders, so my second favorite team was whoever the niners played.

Now I'm privaleged enough to be a Raider's season ticket holder...can't wait for San Diego to come into town.

To Anonymous 1:41 p.m., I'm not much of an abolone diver, but I've gone many times with my dad to the backdoor of Jenner....lot's of great memories of huge abs and great dinners afterwards.

10:41 PM  
Blogger ncraider64 said...

Hey Memdf I know exactly how you feel. I had those same terrible emotions during those two con jobs.
Im a lifer, Ive been watching football for 36 years and win or lose or just get screwed ive always been a Raider. I live only mintues from B.O.A. stadium in Charlotte N.C. so Im surrounded by little kitty cat fans. But I sure enjoyed the Raiders coming in a couple of years ago and dumping the litter box.
P.S. Thank you Al for bringing Art back who better to lead our Raiders.

6:05 AM  
Anonymous Stick'em said...

CJ: Don't worry - the Raiders loved Roman Gabriel too.

They drafted 'em in '62...who says the Raiders don't draft QBs in the 1st round? - LOL!

12:16 PM  
Blogger NY Raider said...

I'm a Lifer and The Sliver And Black Sheep!

When I first got into football (at 9) a friend had a tape about "the master of defense". The last one was Howie Long. The bloody knuckles, the half circle on the top of his face mask like a bull, the club (I could go on forever). That was it, I watched every game they televised in NY. Then the Raiders got Bo Jackson. OOOHHH MAN! My life has never been the same since. My early Jr. High years all I wore was sliver and black, raider bed sheets, posters, hats, etc. (In my DIE HARD Giant family! My Uncles still haven't forgiven me!). That made me "The Sliver And Black Sheep"! And Proud of it.

I'm a different person when the Sliver and Black are playing, I'm nuts! I thought I was crazy, but now (with the power of the Internet) I can see I'm not the only one. I can't wait to go to Oaktown, see this team play and actually have 50,000 other people cheering with me, instead of booing and throwing things at me!

RAIDERS FOR LIFE! GO RAIDERS!

10:46 PM  
Blogger Doobie said...

Like Mad Stork 83 in almost every sense, I'm from NJ and I'm a lifer and a sheep. I remember being intrigued by the Raiders in 1976 when I was six years old when one of my cousins called them a "dirty team". And then when they won the Super Bowl later that year, I was all over them. My father has always been a half-hearted Packers fan so his influence never carried down to me. That, and everyone else I knew was an aggravating Eagles or Giants fan, so I was turned off to the local teams early. The Raiders stuck.

3:47 AM  
Blogger Doobie said...

One more thing. My hatred of the local teams here in NJ has made me fans of teams across the country...the Raiders being one of them.

One of the other teams I'm a fan of is the KC Royals (yes, I know how bad they currently are) which put me in very rare company of being able to root for Bo Jackson *twice* every year. Not many people can say that.

Man, I still get depressed when I think of how good he could have been.

4:03 AM  
Blogger raiderdecoachella said...

Hey plataynegro and memdf I do not believe that there is a better way to descrive a way to become a Raider's fan, I like the way you descibed the way your father took on that game, a true fan how could his son not be a raider's fan?
And you memdf only a lifer would go thru the trash to retrieve something as (at the time) meaningless to just about anybody else, I guess that both of you have the perfect reasons why Raiders fans become Raiders fans.

8:45 AM  
Blogger janfran said...

inheriter
My mother is a raider fan. I remember being left home with my father (nonfootball fan) while she went to a game. I was 7 years old and watched the game on tv. I remember watching as the offensive line opened up a hole the size of a bus and Mark VanEgan (sp?) trotted in for a td. When my mom got home I said, "did you see the size of that hole?" From then on I went to every home game until the Raiders moved to LA. I since have left CA and haven't been back. I still watch on TV and my boyfriend (non football fan)knows to leave the house when the Raiders are playing.
My favorite player: Cliff Branch. Hall of Fame, when are you going to call?!!

12:03 PM  
Anonymous cofhandz said...

I am definately a lifer. The first football game I remember seeing was the 1974 Divisional Playoff between Miami and the Raiders. I didn't even know what divisional playoffs meant at the time. I was ten years old. When Clarence Davis caught that ball with 24 seconds left, that was the most exciting thing I had ever seen! How could I not follow this team after witnessing that? Little did I know, I would be treated to so many more great games after that. I was devastated when the Raiders left Oakland, and bought 4 PSL's when they came back. South end zone, third deck. I have only ever watched a game in Oakland in person. I tried not to follow the team in LA, but I couldn't help myself. I watched them on TV and hoped they would return where they belonged.

4:36 PM  
Anonymous Jimbo43 said...

Lifer

I grew up in rural Oregon and we only got one channel on our TV. Fortunately it was NBC back when they showed the AFL. I got to watch the Raiders every week back in 1967 and they were awesome. People might have said I reminded them of Mike Garrett, then of KC, but I wanted to be Daryle Lamonica. I practiced throwing deep pass after deep pass after watching every Raider game that year. I cried and cried following the Super Bowl loss to the Packers. I asked for and still think to this day that I put a curse on the Packers that lasted for a really long time. Now it's time for Art Shell to kick some butt and bring the Raiders back to their old selves.

5:54 AM  
Blogger WookieRaider said...

I am a lifer. My father was a huge sports fan. I grew up in and around Sacramento. In the late 60's you were either a Raider fan or a Niner fan. I remember watching the AFL championship game in 1967 with my father at the ripe old age of five. I was hooked from that moment on. We were poor growing up and I never saw my beloved team live in Oakland. After fulfilling my obligation to the Marine Corp I stayed in Southern California and had the opportunity to see the Raiders play in the LA Coliseum many times. Those were great years for me. During the good times and the bad times I was forever a devout fan. Now that the Raiders have returned to their ancestral home, I will one day make the trip to the holiest of holies, thus fulfilling my obligation as a citizen of this great Raider Nation...

6:27 AM  
Blogger StickUm25 said...

I’ve got to say part Sheep, part Inheritor. Dad was/is a Niners fan, as are most of the guys on that side of the family. My mother’s side is 100% Raiders, and for reasons obvious to all that’s where I fell into line. My earliest memories are of 1970, during Blanda’s streak. I wonder how many of us got that never-say-die, stay until the final gun sounds, passion for the Raiders based on that one season. I was only 7 – how was I to know what was typical!?! Gotta give Bill King props too – I was getting hooked via radio.

My first game was in 1971 – Raiders vs Oilers – and I still remember the bomb Lamonica threw to Biletnikoff for a TD. My dad took me to that game, which he did for my birthday every year for several years, so there was no animosity there.

My uncles got a kick out of quizzing me about the roster – I’d give them name, position, number – which just enforced it further. I remember one season I played all the games on my electric football set the Saturday before the game was played. The Raiders always won, naturally!

Anyways, I managed season tickets a couple of years while they were down in LA, seeing odd games in other years, and have had season tix since they’ve returned. I’ve got two boys of my own now, and they never miss an opportunity to give grandpa a bad time during football season. Maybe they’ll succeed in converting him over – it’s never too late to join the Raider Nation!

6:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a silver and black sheep. I am from DC. I have spent many of my early days on the west coast where my grandfather exsposed me to the darkside. But my family belong to the skins. Father, brothers, TWIN (no sisters), cousins and a sea of burgandy and gold as far as the eye can see. The day we beat them in the superbowl can not be expressed in words. Watching at Fedex as we got our last win of the year made 4 wins feel better. Being able to talk shit for four more years. . .Priceless. Now can we beat someone in our division. Raiders till I die.

DC Raider

8:01 AM  
Anonymous Woody the Daryle said...

Well my allegance began back in 1967 while living in Pa. when I accidently tune into the final minutes of an Raider game while visiting a relative in Norfolk, Va. Blanda kicked a game winning field goal. A few weeks later I again turned on the set and there were the Raiders once again winning with a Blanda field goal. Something at that minute told me this team was special and I'v been a loyal fan ever since. I now live in Maryland. My hero is Daryle Lamonica which I have had the honor to meet way back in 1969 at the hotel where the Raiders were staying prior to meeting the Broncos which I might add we beat that Sunday. I'm a true member of the Raider Nation. I'm a avid collector of Raider pins and at present I have over 172 pins which I wear proudly on several raider hats. More than one person has said I'm a walking bill board and has never seen me without a raider pin located somewhere on my person. My car has Raider license plates along with several magnetic stickers. Believe me they see me coming and going. I feel we are ready to turn the corner again and be a force to reckon with for many years to come. I truly bleed silver and black. Watch out for our next great QB Mr. Walker.

8:16 AM  
Blogger ddddgee said...

My dad was an original Raider season ticket holder in 1960 and went to every home game for 22 years until they left for LA. He took me to my first Raider game in 1961 when they were playing their home games at Candlestick. My dad took me to a game at Frank Youell Field and I remember sitting in the portable stands. I clearly remember the smile on his face when he came home from the last game of the 1962 season when the Raiders were winless and had just beaten the Boston Patriots in a driving rainstorm. He took me to a lot of games at the Coliseum, including the 1976 AFC Championship when the Raiders finally beat Pittsburgh to go the Super Bowl. My eyes still get moist when I watch a replay of the Raider-Viking Super Bowl XI. I got a PSL when the Raiders returned in 1995, so there's been a member of my family at every Oakland Raider home game ever played. My dad's in his mid-80's now and is still a big Raider fan!

9:03 AM  
Anonymous Delgado said...

Lifer. As a child I used to paint all of my favourite model aircraft silver and black because they seemed perfect that way. This was long before I even knew about the Raiders (I'm from the UK). I started watching the 1983 playoffs when the NFL was shown in the UK on a regular basis for the first time. At first my interest was academic. I knew American Football was a game akin to chess, but understood nothing beyond that. Then I saw the Raiders in the playoffs and I thought "Fantastic! They're Silver and Black!" I watched a bit more and started to understand the attitude that went with it. The more I saw and the more I found out about them, the more it felt perfect. At the time I was especially taken with the comment by one of the refugee players taken in by the Raiders who said "This team gives you back the things the other teams take away." Alzado said a lot to this effect. After that the momentum was unstoppable. The more I found out the more I knew this was my team. Tom Peters (business guru) used a photo of Pete Banaszak on the front cover of a business report titled "Three yards and a cloud of dust". Peters needed a photo that defined attitude. There it was again - the Raider attitude. Nobody else will do.

9:04 AM  
Anonymous Joseph Budd said...

Being stuck in South Dakota, I'd have to say I was doused in the Raiders, first game I remember hearing, was the Raiders winning the Super Bowl against the Vikings. Since then, it's only grown, using lunch money to buy the cards in junior high, and using graduation money to pick up posters of the silver and black....to this day, i'm still loyal, lean or fat years...silver and black to the end!!!

9:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Taotao Raiders:

Been a lifer since the Superbowl against the Vikings--won $5 from my 4th grade classmate in a bet. There is no other team, like your wife or your first love: I am confident that the Raiders will win the NBA championship tonight, the soccer title thing, the next presidential election.

* * *

I met Chuckie and Bruce Allen at a Chamber lunch in Tampa a couple of weeks ago. I got a football for only those two to sign but I wore a pin of the Raiders shield inside my lapel, facing my heart.

Have no mercy, Art, bring us home, Al.

9:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a Lifer, since the early 70's, but my 2-year old son is soon to be an Inheritor. I live in NY so the first time I saw a live game was at Shea Stadium, with "Snake" Stabler-led Raiders against Richard Todd-led Jets. Those were the days! Of course the Raiders won.

NY Raider Fan... for Life!

9:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I lived in norcal as a kid and moved to san diego in 1983 just in time to enjoy the raiders win the 1984 superbowl. I went to the same highschool marcus allen went to, Lincoln High. However, what sealed my loyalty to the raiders is when I joined the USMC. Reading about the history of the Corps and the first "special forces" developed by the USMC. They were designated as Marine Raiders and their symbol was a skull. Thats was it done deal!

10:42 AM  
Anonymous Raider Madness said...

It all started in 1960 when my father and I went to Kezar to watch the Raiders. They had black helmets in the first years. I can remember when Wayne Valley had a contest to name the team and we were a heartbeat away fro being called The Oakland Seniors (Yikes!). It wasn't until I return home from serving overseas in the Army that I became a true die-hard. My father was in charge of security at Frank Youell Field and he ask me if I wanted to work security at the Raider game on Sunday. Not only yes but Hell Yes! So I put on my Pinkerton uniform and there I was on the Raider bench. At half time I had to stand in front of the Raider locker room, which was in the Quonset huts behind the stands. Al Davis walked by and looked at my baby face and asks me if I had real bullets in my gun. Wow I was hooked. We played the Chargers that day. The Chargers had a guy named Ernie Ladd on the team . His shoe size was 22 triple "E" I could have gone fishing in that shoe. My wife and all my famaily Became season ticket holders in the new Coliseum until they left for LA. I remained a Raider fan. I was upset that they left Oaktown but every time I would see the game on TV and I would see those Silver and Black uniforms it just became all Good! Currently I am member in ORIB and I always close by saying "Raider Madness is bliss and nothing else matters!"

Rick Faller Redding, Ca

10:56 AM  
Anonymous ben schneider said...

i was 8 years old when the raiders were in sb 18 and the pride, arrogance, and total dominance shown by my brother and cousin and fellow party goers throughout the game were enough to hook me for life. I live in pennsylvania, surrounded by steeler fans, but there is also a very large raider fanbase due to the birthplace of raider standout linebacker dan conners. i have the emblem tattood on my arm , my daughter, son and x-wife are diehards due to me and i stop short (just barely) of a fistfight every new season to argue why the raiders will be the BEST team in the nfl.

11:09 AM  
Anonymous Stever said...

Well I'm from Canada eh!? so I have no geographic loyalty and no inherited loyalty, I was free to choose any team. What really persuaded me to choose the Raiders was from playing John Madden football 96. I loved the speed of their offence, Jett, Kaufman and Ismail were all blazing fast and Tim Brown caught everything thrown at him. I also liked Bo Jackson when I was little so he probably subconsciously influenced my decision as well. I guess I would have to make a new category for myself, the Maddener, picking them as my team in John Madden football, then becoming a real Raiders fan.

5:01 PM  
Blogger M Diddy said...

Technically, I would be a traitor, but realistically, I am a Lifer. My story makes sense if you can remember what it was like to be 5. I grew up in Central NJ and for whatever reason I liked the KC Chiefs. No idea why, but I did. Well, one day I was watching a game and the Chiefs lost to the Raiders. Using that 5-year old logic, that meant that the Raiders had to be better. That was 26 years ago and I am still a proud and loyal member of Raider Nation!

6:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess us Canadians come in groups, except i wasn't inducted into the Raider Nation through Madden.(although i have owned every copy i can get my hands on)
I remember being around 13 or 14 and sitting at a friends house and talking with her dad who was watching football. I was only supposed to sit for a few minutes with him before we left, That didn't happen. I was fixed on watching this team and how they played, man were they fast and hard hitting and what a cool logo. Watching them play made my arm hairs stand up. I sat and watched the rest of the game with her dad that day and remember seeing the face of art shell with his low tucked black cap with the standard raiders symbol on it and thinking then that this is my team.
Since then i live and die with every game and am chomping at the bit for this upcoming season to start. It will be great to watch the face that sold me in the first place roaming the sidelines again, the legend arthur shell.

6:45 PM  
Blogger NY Raider said...

Sean, GREAT FREAKIN Idea! I love this stuff. There are some great stories here. This is cool ish. Know there are tons of Raider fans that feel as passionate as I do about this team.

6:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a rookie. I've been a true fan for about 7 years. I initially got into the Raiders for the dumbest reason...I was a young 13 year old kid in 1989, and all my favorite rap artists wore Raider gear, so when I went to buy my first cap, it was Silver and Black. About 10 years later when I really started watching football, I selected the Raiders while watching the last game against the Chiefs in 1999, where they won in OT. Been hardcore since then.

Living in Montreal Canada makes it tough to see games live. However I did manage to fly to Oakland to catch the Donkeys, but got screwed by scalpers with a fake ticket. I started strolling outside the stadium, and ended up listening to the stadium speakers while sitting next to the coliseum train tracks and dumpsters, where I was fighting off rats with a stick. I was sitting in garbage with my face paint. But it was all worth it when I got to hear the crowd live, and the name Tim Brown make a first down!

~ chicomak

7:50 PM  
Anonymous MCGOPHERS said...

Traider here. Used to be a Niner fan until Rice came here and being that I was a young kid and Rice was my favorite player, my alleigance switched with him. Been a Raider fan since 01.

8:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Inheritor

My father was a huge Raider fan and my great aunt (originally from Brooklyn-the same as Al) was a taxicab driver in Oakland in the 60's and 70's and had many good stories about driving Raiders around. I was a kid in Santa Rosa back when they had training camp there and used to go watch Ray Guy boom punts over the fence of the Tropicana. I have remained a fan through the LA years and on to the present.

8:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Apologies, but I misquoted in my entry yesterday. The photo Tom Peters used was of Mark van Eeghen. This is the part I should not have depended on memory for:
Taken from Fast Company magazine Dec 2001 -
"Mark van Eeghen was a big, strong, in-your-face, three-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust running back for the Raiders. We were about to run around 10,000 copies of our report, and we needed a picture for the cover. We had originally taken a picture right out of Sports Illustrated, but at the last minute, we decided that we couldn't steal from SI at that level. So we went across the bay to the Raiders' office and looked through their archive, and we found the perfect image: a photo featuring Mark van Eeghen.
It was perfect in a lot of ways. The photo said three yards and a cloud of dust, and our book said the same thing: Love thy people. Love thy customers. Keep it simple. Lean staff, simple organization. Get the bureaucrats out of the bloody way. Pay attention to the "real" people with dirty fingernails. That was the Oakland Raiders. They were the guys flying the Jolly Roger. They were the pirates, the underdogs. Al Davis, their renegade owner, always preached, "Just win, baby," and his avowed message was . . . "Commitment to excellence."

11:25 PM  
Anonymous Tokai Japan Outpost of the Raider Nation said...

I guess I'm a Traider, as much as it pains me to say it.

I grew up in the East Bay as a Raider fan. I remember the first NFL game I really sat and watched was the Immaculate Reception game against Pittsburgh. I even went to one Raider game as a kid in the mid-70s, but I don't remember much of it. The 2 Super Bowls in Oakland were a big deal, but then ... the Raiders left for that place far away, and the 49ers got good, and I was lost, rooting for other teams and not really much of a fan.

My brother remained true to the Raiders, and would travel to LA once or twice a year to go to the games. He would return with wild tales, but I never really understood what the big deal was.

Then the Raiders came home. My dad and brother bought PSLs and, after I returned from a few years in Japan, I took my dad's place at the games. My dad tried to warn me that Raider fans were a bunch of loud, drunk people using the F word constantly, but I ignored him.

At the Black Hole, the tailgates and the fans blew me away. The sharing of food and drinks, the DJs, the bands. Some guy making margaritas with a blender hooked up to the motor of his weed-whacker. Hardcore spending 2 hours painting his face. The games were great too, but the fans, the Nation, are what made it such a memorable experience.

I finally understood why my brother was so worked up about. I got it. I was hooked. I was home.

I have passed on the Raider tradition to the next generation, as my kids are also loud and proud members of the Nation. I am also spreading the Raider love across Japan. Because there is nothing like an Oakland Raiders game, and there's nothing like being a member of the Raider Nation.

4:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I started being a Raider fan in 1960(telling my age) Had a brother that was a Rams fan and one a 49ers fan. Wanted a team of my own. One of the greates decisions I ever made.

6:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the anonymous handle above was mine, why it came out anonymous I don't know.
kman

6:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess I would be a Sheep. I am from Wyoming, so my natural home team would have been the Donkeys, but when I started learning football (coming from a rodeo family with no other sports recognized) I watched horse-face (Elway) and his "it's all me" attitude, and went looking for another team immediately. Thankfully, Howie and Bob Golic fit the picture of what I wanted, and I've been there ever since! WITH PRIDE!!

10:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess I'd be a lifer/traider hybrid. Lived in North Cal while I was growing up and it wasn't till I was 12 that I got hooked with the team. I always used to walk to my friends house on sundays and we'd talk about how good the Steelers were and then watch highlights (Or a steeler game if it was on) but then one of those days a raider game occured and I was hooked. Can't remember the exact date, but really don't give a care. My proudest moment after that was walking to his house the day after the raiders crushed the vikings in the Superbowl in Pasadena.

8:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Definitely a Silver and Black Sheep. Grew up in a texas family full of Cowboys fans. Began playing little league football for a team called the NE Raiders as a little runt defensive back in mid 70s. Played in the city championship with them. Happened to notice a couple of guys named Hayes and Haynes playing cornerback for the Oakland Raiders around that time, and these guys blew me away. Been a fan ever since. My favorite Raider image remains Lester Hayes lining up on his man with that wild-eyed super intense look and low stance, goop dripping off his hands and smeared all over his jersey. BTW those NE Raiders are still winning championships in El Paso, Texas.

10:09 AM  
Blogger snakesraiders12 said...

Brothers of the nation i left my story what happened to it?

1:21 PM  
Blogger snakesraiders12 said...

Oh and check out the baddest of the baddest Raider fans. Not for the weak of heart. Very strong language. Anything goes.
http://p089.ezboard.com/boaklandraidersdarkside

1:41 PM  
Blogger resigned idealist said...

Coming from the Far East and having no older brothers, I taught myself how to watch football through 3 Sundays of intense viewing when I was 17. After all, I was attending USC, where Marcus Allen had left the year before to become a Raider.

Because of Marcus Allen, I started following the Raiders and when I moved up to the Bay Area I tried to be diplomatic and said to all who asked, that I lied both the 49'ers and the Raiders. Finally, a co-worker forced me to choose. And that's when my heart said to me that I am and forever will be part of the Raider Nation.

2:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How I became a Raider.


It started in 1985. I grew up in a small town near Buffalo NY and since my dad was a Jets fan I grew up hating the BIlls. I was just eight years old at the start of the 1985 season but I had watched Marcus Allen and was awed by his talent. For Chritmas 1983 I got a Marcus Allen Raiders T-shirt because I thought he was so cool. Within two years I was pullin for his team. From that point on I got engrossed, I couldn't stop reading about the Raiders, watching NFL films which profiled Freddy B, Cliff Branch, Marcus, Snake, etc. This season will be my 22nd season as a Raider.

6:45 AM  
Anonymous Holy Roller said...

I'm a lifer. We didn't watch football in my house when I was a kid living in Kansas City. We were a baseball house. But, for some reason, one day my dad said that we were going to watch the Superbowl. It happened to be Superbowl XI. I saw these guys with long hair, beards and bloody noses with cross swords on their helmets and I was hooked. I fell in love with the Raiders and football that day. It wasn't until later that I learned of the rivalry between the Raiders and Chiefs. Too late. I hate the Chiefs! As an adult, I spent eight years in CA and got to go to Raiders home games. It was so great to be amongst my silver & black family. Now I'm back in KC and hating it. I can't wait to get back to CA and Raider territory!

11:46 AM  
Blogger dax said...

Freakin lifer. Nuff said!

12:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To all football and Oakland Raider fans...
Im looking for information on a game that took place in the 70's Raiders vs Chiefs.
Where a Raider player belts a Chief player mid field as he looks down apon him with his nose busted and face covered with blood.
My question to you is.
What month & year was it? and who was the Oakland Raider that threw the punch.There was a certain magazine that illustrated the whole incident,it was a four page layout that unfolded showing the intire field with just these two players midfield.Thanks in advance for your help and information.

8:59 AM  
Anonymous raiderdave said...

I BECAME A RAIDER FAN IN 1967,i WAS 9 YEARS OLD I HAD BEEN A 49ERS FAN,BUT THEY WERE LOUSY TEHN, I HAPPENED TO SPIN THE RADIO DIAL ANDD CAME ACROSS THEGREATEST RADIO ANNOUNCER OF ALL TIME-BILL KING CALLING A LOPSIDED RAIDER VICTORY OVER THE HOUSTON OILERS, I THINK IT WAS 52-3 OR 52-0. FROM THEN ON I WAS HOOKED. THOSE WERE THE DAYS OF THE MAD BOMBER DARYL LAMONICA AND THE COMEBACK OLD MAN GEORGE BLANDA. BY THE WAY THE SAME YEAR I BECAME A USC FAN. OF COURSE THAT YEAR THE RAIDERS WERE IN THE SUPERBOWL..AS A SIDE NOTE I WAS A RADIO ANNOUNCER FOR ABOUT 8 YEARS,INCLUDING BEING STADIUM ANNOUNCER FOR THE MODESTO A'S,BEFORE MOVING TO NEW JERSEY,WHERE BY THE WAY THERE ARE QUITE A FEW RAIDER FANS.I CAN STILL HEAR BILL KING'S...HOLY TOLEDO RINGING IN MY EARS...SPEAKING OF HOLY.. I HEARD THAT NAPOLEAN KAUFMANN IS NOW PASTORING A CHURCH IN SAN JOSE

6:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A rookie..the infamous tuck rule game against those patsies converted me.I happened to be watching that game in Fremont, CA in the main Raider bar. It was destiny!

2:40 PM  
Anonymous shtilukgudinblck!!!! said...

its hard to say but I was chief fan for close to 10 yrs and all my close friends was all RAIDERS!!! Nuff said.. I've always repected the team because its was my rival and the only thing I hate more is the fucking old man (davis) that wont die so the team can move on and become competative again. Last month I've went to my first NFL game and part of me died during the CHARGER/RAIDER game. I've notice the pride and the NO take shit with anyone. Even if 10% of the fan was only Raider! We can take the whole stadium over. Someone asked me why? I told him being with the Chiefs is like being with the same boring woman then the Raider's came in my life and it's like a woman that swallow.. it is the perfect example I can make. The RAIDERS are just NO MAMES WHAY and will die in the way they love the team. RAIDERS!!!!!!!!!

9:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a LIFER!!! I started watching the Raiders in 1976. My older brother was a Pittsburgh fan, but his girlfriend was a Raider fan. I used to keep a big board for my brother on who won the games every week. But I only watched 2 games. Raiders and Pittsburgh, week after week.

In 1978 my brother said it was time for me to pick a team. He explained how it worked, that once you choose a team, you are in it for life. Raiders all the way...I'm hooked for life. Even more proud to wear my Silver & Black in Donkey land. Lady_Raider

8:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A LIFER
Somewhere about 1960-1962
the Raiders lost back to back games by a combined score of 99-ZIP. I became a fan because they needed some LOVE. Been giving it ever since. GO RAIDERS

2:03 PM  
Anonymous Marv Hubbard 44 said...

Born in Oakland in 1960. No mentor, I'm just a pure, innate lifer. Well, maybe I might consider Bill King a mentor. Back in the day, home games were never televised (not even PLAYOFF games), so you listened to a LOT of radio broadcasts.

3:57 PM  
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7:41 AM  
Blogger r8rchris said...

Great article, Glad I stumbled across it. My name is ShadyRaider and I am a Inheritor. My earliest memory of football I was around 5 years old which would be around 1983. My father was getting ready for work while watching a Raider game, I didn't know any teams and don't even remember who we played that faithful day but he asked me to watch the game so I could tell him if "the guys in black won" I made it through very little before getting bored and asking my mother to watch it so I could go play with my friends. I completely forgot about the game afterwards but remembered instantly when he walked in the door and quickly relayed the good news that 'the guys in black' had won. At that precise moment I became a Raider fan. The sheer look of joy on his face without a single word said portrayed what it meant to him. And it made me feel like I cheated myself out of something special by missing the game, I confessed to not actually watching the game..and haven't made that mistake again since then. I watched every game televised until Direct TV came out with season ticket of which I have been a loyal subscriber ever since. I have two daughters and watched both of their eyes open up for the first time. The very first thing they seen..literally was me wearing the same solid black with grey lightning Raiders hat. The same hat I will be wearing the day I become a grandpa.

12:27 PM  

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