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You’re meant to feel joy

Tonight, the Sounders gave us joy.

You’ll have to forgive me for being a broken record. I know this about myself, but I’m a simple man who holds on to a few things in life. The most important thing in our lives is our joy. It does not matter how, why, or where it happens, but the point of the enterprise is joy. That’s why we’re Seattle Sounders fans — it’s for the joy.

2020 has been a shit year. I don’t need to tell you that, because I know you know that. It’s been very, very hard to find joy this year. We’ve lost jobs, we’ve lost hope, and most importantly we’ve lost too many lives. Nothing can ever make up for the despair we’ve experienced this year, but it’s in these moments that we must find our joy the most.

And that’s exactly why the Sounders exist. The reason why this soccer team exists is to provide us joy. In a year like this, we can take solace in these small things. Sports are a small thing compared to everything else, but they can provide moments to make us smile and forget about the other things for a little while, and that’s exactly what happened tonight.

The Sounders defeated Minnesota by three goals to two. That’s what the history book will matter-of-factly record at the end of the day, and in the playoffs that’s all that matters. There’s more to the game than that and you’ll certainly read about it on these pages of Sounder at Heart, but I wanted to write a note to you. We’re all alone right now and all I want is to be with you.

So much of my Sounders experience has been defined by you. I remember being with you for every important Sounders moment in history. And there’s nothing I want more than to be with you. We should be holding each other and singing together tonight, but we can’t be.

The spirit that this Sounders team exhibits will do for me. They’re tough kids who never quit. The reason why I love this team so much is because they embody you, the Sounder fan. I’m not going to name names or anything, but I know so many of you who are tough kids. You’ve dealt with some seriously difficult bullshit in your life and you’ve come out the other side with the 90+3’ winning goal. I love that about you and I love that about this team.

“That’s a locker room full of championship players.” Sounders head coach Brian Schmetzer had to say following the match. I don’t think it’s just the locker room with that characteristic, it’s an entire fan base. It’s Will Bruin and it’s you, the cancer survivor. It’s you, the mom. It’s you, the Sounders fan.

“When adversity hits you, when you’re socked in the jaw. You get back up. You persevere,” Schmetzer said of his team. I bet he had you in mind.

But just like in life, the job’s not done yet. There’s one more game to go. Nothing matters but that game now. Nothing matters but you.

“God, I wish the Sounders fans were here.” - Brian Schmetzer

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