Wednesday, May 11, 2016

5/11/16: The Nordecke

My first tifo.. Perhaps the Nordecke's first crowd banner. I remember standing below the section and a few were yelling that they wouldn't put the banner up minutes before it went crowd born. Those same people ended up being my best friends later on down the road.

First off, I have little idea what the climatic drama could be between Nordecke groups or supporters today. And if there is anything serious? But, I can guarantee we've likely been there before. I could name off worse scenario's between fights, swear chants, racist fan incident, etc. in 2008, 2009.

Currently I'm in the section 3-4 times a year (live in PA), used to be in the Nordecke for every game for years. But, problems rarely change. If I'm way off base and someone wants to give me the low down go ahead.

But, one thing I know. I know everyone is strong enough to get past disagreements, and will, in the Nordecke.

Even when I was weak, and nothing in the slightest to do with soccer, the Nordecke was there.

I was recently in a bad accident in December, the Nordecke unexpectedly reached out and it touched my heart to be remembered.

So, have amazing faith in you all as a group.

Some of the individuals involved I've met often.
Some once or twice.
Some not at all. Haven't been as involved now (distance, career, etc.) so to be thought of.

This was profound guys.

I spent over a month in the hospital.
On top of that, when I'm not involved with the occasional video production for a sporting event, I'm a waiter 95% of the time.
Ala, not exactly living the high life. Every bit I needed. Needed.

Thank you.

By the way, right thing to say, but my alertness at the time wasn't great. I don't remember seeing Matt (my mom does) and when I was taken to the rehabilitation hospital after his visit I thought I was being kidnapped. :-) But, the news of the Nordecke donation hit me wonderfully when I finally came to... Was one of the few pleasant surprises for what was a hard month.

The Nordecke was a very important part of my life back in the day, I think about it often, and still is.

Very proud to see it expand and be a massive blob of color weekly. Back in the day there were a lot of weeks it would be half full. So, progress has been made, even if some weeks it's been not as fast as you would like. Progress still amazes me.

In March 2008, it was really just a fun idea.

Toronto @ Columbus home opener.

Over 8 years later. 8 years! Were still here. Be proud.

I've met some of the best people in the section. The most creative, if that matters to the world as well as the overall look of the group.

My advice for those that have an idea but have naysayers..

If you think it's in the best interest of the whole section, and it's in your heart, do it.

2009 opener

A personal example, went crazy adhd over this two stick tifo idea. Myself and some friends did. It took a bit of campaigning. But, had 50% of others invested into it as well on opening day.

Some people were like meh, you'll have that.
While constant others built their own two sticks and brought them along.

Thought it looked great. One of my favorite pictures.

But, I'll just say if you and your friends have an idea. Just try. Constructively. And it will help.

And it led to much, much more..
Some of the most priceless memories down the line, personally...
My apartment in Columbus back in 2009

That banner made rounds multiple games.

Lol, straight outta Chillicothe
Some not so great ideas. Lol, what is that design above?
Enough fabric to open our own JoAnn Fabrics

It even led to getting so good at designing a banner that you could even free hand, if design was next to fabric.
Bruno character wearing TFC colors and Elmer Fudd both freehanded, one of about ten.

Kind of fun personally.. Growing up in rural Western PA my art class was like one year of painting when I was six, lol.

Anyways, here's my opinion on some Nordecke ideas in the future and on the direction I would look to pursue for those looking for options in the Nordecke and maybe elsewhere (as a group and individually).

1.) I would like the Nordecke group to consider the idea of a submission website online where people can submit donation ideas. Crew fans throughout the year could submit causes every once in a while and if it's something (the supporter group leaders or say if there was one day leaders, reps of the entire group think we can all get behind) after reviewing it, then offer it at a game.

Don't have to go crazy. But, maybe once every month, or two months.

Just send around a donation can.. If people aren't for the cause or broke don't have to donate. But, say out of 3,000 people, if 1,000 donate, just give a dollar, can help some people out and become a great group in all people's eyes in this city.

That would be amazing and show quite a level of maturity from our early days.

By donating, the Nordecke helped me out and made me feel better in some not so great times. Would like to extend that to others as well and charities. If we put $4 bucks to that instead of a beer at the game. Afterwards, we might all feel quite awesome.

2.) If fans are disagreeing in the Nordecke, lol, this isn't a crisis or a new crisis. There's been several times where groups (and people in the section) haven't gotten along in the past in this section.

And the disagreements always end and we pull through. It will happen again.

3.) The situation has been much, much, much more desperate than some arguing. Trust me. There's been many of times where the section was in crisis, with the team looking to split it up, from smoke bombs or from the one New England racial slur by an idiotic fan incident. Or West Ham. Or fights with TFC fans. Or we've been told to stop swear chanting over the PA system.

It appears a bit more PC nowadays honestly, lol.

4.) Get along if you could- We all like the yellow light blue, red soccer team, were all in it for the best reasons and have no ill will idea wise. No one is trying to make us all look bad with an idea, no matter how excellent or questionable. Sometimes it's better to get behind the questionable and it leads into the greatest idea. Support each other, look for a solution.

5.) No supporters group gets paid the most off of attention.
Or gets a parade down Broad Street.
So, do it together. More will be accomplished that way.

6.) Even if you think your ideas are the best. Actually listen to others and think their ideas over. No one gets a million bucks for the most Massive idea. Do it for everyone in the section and the team. And that's it.

7.) Sometimes people just complain or reject an idea because they have no idea.

And perhaps don't like you for having one.

Their idea is to do nothing. So don't let that get to you if so.

8.) If something can't be broached, grow elsewhere.

For seasons, it's hard to find a empty seat in the Nordecke. This is great.. Or a pain in the ass if you have tickets elsewhere. I've had three or four times where I was on a date or with family, screwed up, and couldn't get into the section unless I did a deep six operative move.. Since you can't freely saunter into the section. But, that also means support can develop elsewhere freely because it's not that way in the rest of the stadium.

More talent might make it in other places because of the situation on game day. Can't be introduced to the Nordecke without a ticket, but could with another group (underneath the scoreboard for example) because seating is much more lax there.

More loud, chanting support around the whole stadium isn't a bad thing. I don't think anyone will be against that.

9.) It's okay to get frustrated. I have at times.

But, the good far outweighed the bad. Trust me, 2008 to 2010, was always in the Nordecke. Was some of my best times.

10.) Also, if you are frustrated. Just keep it inside and see how you feel tomorrow. Don't become drastic. Because you will usually realize it wasn't a big deal.

11.) But, if you have a great idea. People will get behind it in the Nordecke.

If I had a good tifo or Rick Thomas did or someone else in the group, or we got going with the two stick tifo, people got behind it because they probably figured "yeah that might be cool."

So, don't quit on something. If you believe it, keep moving and others will come along.

12.) I'm all for a chant leader if it's someone we can all respect. We tried this once in either 2008 or 2009 for a game with Michael Blakeley. I think it went well but was never tried again.

If a leader can focus on all groups and bring all of their chants in. La Turbina for one. HSH for another and etc..

If its loud and everyone in the section can get behind that chant because of that might shock the rest of the stadium. Because at times I think we were a lot louder in 2008, 2009.

Were afraid of change. But, sometimes it may make us better.

Same as donation website.. Just have some candidates run on there to for a couple chant leader positions.

If it goes horribly. Return to what we usually do.

Glory to Columbus. Here we go


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