From: Wonderful World
Great question Dan! Thanks for asking, very therapeutic. I have dropped parts of this information at various times, including on the Seattle game day thread just last week, but here goes how it happened and the first time I bled Purple. My age: 52 years, 6 months and 15 days.
I grew up in Camas, then Vancouver, Washington. In the late sixties early 70s, my chums were all LA fans, Rams, Dodgers. I loved Johnny Bench and the Reds, they were my team I was all baseball when I was very young. Back then the Reds and Dodgers were great rivals in the National League West. My Dad loved John Brodie and the San Francisco 49ers. I had a red 49er stocking cap, and I got picked on when I wore it, but I wore it anyway because my Dad picked it out for me. This was in the days where the hair product for men commercials exclaimed the "Wet head is dead." So of course my little LA Rams comrades changed that to the Red Head is dead. My first joy with the Vikings was them beating the Rams in the playoffs, I didn't become bleeder at that time but I tended to root for them as the lessor of all evils. I hated the Rams, Oakland, the Steelers and my most hated team was what was referred to As America's Team - the Dallas Cowboys. You know where this is going; I felt they got screwed as a 12 year old on the Hail Mary. My allegiance did not start there though because I had a new shiny object. The Seattle Seahawks, finally the state of Washington had a team and they we were NFC, for one year, then AFC. So I had my NFC San Francisco 49ers and My AFC Seattle Seahawks with Jack Patera from the Bud Grant coaching tree Jim Zorn and Steve Largent. In 1977, a couple of years after my dad passed away, my Mom visited some relatives from North Dakota, her cousin played cupid with a farmer and in the summer of 1977 I was in the back of a Suburban with my dog traveling to Karnak, North Dakota, population 9 (that included my mom and me.) Talk about Culture shock. I was instructed that I had to be a Viking fan and being 14 and out of my element, I naturally declined. Then a funny thing happened in 1979, with limited television we got all the Notre Dame games. I found a college quarterback that I could not get enough of I thought he was so cool, his name was Joe Montana. My Aunt, who is like a mother to me to this day, was living in Palo Alto and she was always giving me news on the 49ers. Bill Walsh was this genius coach and he drafted Joe. So my college years were spent watching my Aunts team win the Super Bowl with my favorite player.
In 1985, I married a Minnesota girl. Prior to the marriage I made a bet with my future father in law, regarding his Vikings, you see he knew Fran Tarkenton. My father in law was in graduate school at Bemidji State in 1961, and he worked at the college during training camp. So I bet him if Bud Grant’s Minnesota Vikings (The year after Less Steckle) could win the opener against San Francisco (coming off another Super Bowl victory) I would commit to rooting for the Vikings for a year maybe longer if I could stand, you know for harmony and that sort of thing.
I got so into my new team that I knew more about them after a few months than the relatives. The first time I bled, really felt the pain, was the Darren Nelson drop to tie the game in Washington DC. That strike shortened year where the replacements screwed our record up. Our team was really 8-4, as far as I was concerned.
I was hook line and sinker with my Brother in law on the Hershel trade. I thought we were going to crush everybody, we actually got worse, I think. I knew the transition had taken full effect and there was no coming back when I would argue that Anthony Carter was better than Jerry Rice, when he owned and upset the 49ers in the playoffs, I was rooting full force for the Purple. You see this was my team, not my Dad’s, not my Aunts not some random expansion team.
The rest is history my daughter was born in 1988 my son in 1990, while my daughter acts like you she doesn’t care my son is cursed, even from Hawaii, he was crushed two days ago and we processed it for almost an hour. The longest I ever saw him cry in his whole life, was 45 straight minutes in 1999, after we lost to Atlanta. My daughter just got engaged to a kid who grew up in California but moved to Minnesota 10 years ago, he is cursed and bleeds purple too! In fact he was at the game two days ago, said it was a long ride home to Nisswa.
That is my Purple Blood story and I am sticking to it. Passing the blood letting on to future generations as best I can.
Go the extra mile, it's never crowded!