The seasons have changed and the warm weather seems to be well behind us until next year. If you’re one of the fortunate ones to have to get up and go to work each day like me, then you likely have started to pull out the sweaters, jackets and hats that we will call upon to keep us warm for the next few months. In doing so I ask you to consider one thing – find a way to incorporate your New York Cosmos gear into your commute. Whether it’s a cap, a jacket, a pullover sweater, anything you have that would go well with your commute, wear it and wear it proud. Over the past month as the mercury has slowly started its dissent down from the 90’s, I’ve donned my Cosmos cap and at times, my Cosmos track suit as a sweater when I make my way to work. What I have found is that there are so many “closet” Cosmos fans out there who have commented on my apparel, all of them with smiles and something good to say about the Cosmos. Most of the times the comments are about the former Cosmos of the 70’s & 80’s. Depending on what mood I am in or what my schedule looks like, a number of these occasions have turned into some healthy soccer conversations. Of course these are fans that root for their teams in either the EPL, La Liga, MLS or other leagues over-seas, but many of them don’t’ know what the Cosmos Reboot era is all about. Some of them heard the Cosmos were back but don’t really know much more than that.
All of these conversations were random conversations and all of them were with people that REALLY love soccer. New York is FULL of soccer fans, largely in part because of New York’s ethnic diversity. Many of these NY soccer fans also follow other sports teams. But in case you haven’t noticed, in New York City right now, there aren’t any sports teams to really talk about right now that would make a New Yorker feel good about them. The New York Mets had a horrible season in baseball. The NY Yankees failed to make the playoffs and are currently golfing. The NY Giants are 0-5 and while the NY Jets have a winning record right now, there hasn’t been a positive feeling about them recently. Hockey is just getting started and basketball hasn’t even started. New Yorkers are longing for a team to root for to make them feel good. So to me it’s a mystery why more people aren’t behind the NY Cosmos especially since there are so many soccer fans in NY. My thought remains that they just don’t know about them.
I commend the team as it has started to get more active in advertising the team. Recently I saw billboards in the NYC subway stations advertising the next two home games. The fact that they put Pele’s face to contrast Marco Senna’s face gives an older generation fan the opportunity to remember Pele and likely recognize Marco Senna’s. If they didn’t know Senna was playing in NY, well now they do. Kudos to the team for that billboard. But the point I am trying to drive home is that us as common fans can do our part to promote the team in the easiest of ways – common conversation.
Here are some of my experiences:
-I was in Old Navy two Fridays ago buying apparel for the kids and while I was on line waiting to pay, a Manchester United fan softly said the name “Eric Cantona” behind me as he saw the NY Cosmos cap I was wearing. I laughed, turned around and had a quick two minute conversation about the Cosmos. He said he would check out the team at Hofstra.
-I’ve parked my car in the same lot in the morning for years and never really spoke to the grouchy old guy that I pay my fee to daily. I got out of my car one morning with my Cosmos track jacket on and he smiled and said “where did you get that”? For the record, I’ve never seen this guy smile before. I said Umbro store online! Long story short – he saw the Cosmos years ago in Greece where he is originally from. He’s still a huge soccer fan who had no clue the Cosmos were back. He hates travelling to see the Red Bulls and has no idea why NY doesn’t have a real team. He’s headed to Hofstra and to me, he’s no longer the grouchy old guy that I pay in the morning. He’s soccer fan from Greece who cheers hard for Olympiacos back home and who may now be going to Cosmos matches.
-This morning I drop of my car at the Nissan dealership for its scheduled oil change and my Cosmos track suit on. Clerk behind the counter is a huge soccer fan. He starting ranting about how NYCFC was taking so long to start playing. I told him screw NYCFC and go watch the Cosmos. I had a pocket schedule in my car that now belongs to him. I explained to him that NYCFC would be financed by Man City-why would you want to root for a team that is owned by something from outside of NY? I told him the Cosmos are ALL NEW YORK. He laughed, but he kept the pocket schedule – I told him “See you at Hofstra”
I can go on and on with similar stories but these are just three that I chose to share. It’s one thing to wear your colors on game day but there is nothing wrong with putting them on other days as well. especially given the sports environment in New York right now. The Cosmos have already lit the Empire State Building green once, but that’s not enough. Go out and do your part Cosmos Country,
New York needs the Cosmos now!