I can remember his voice – swimming in love and belting with urgency.
When I first heard Martin Luther King Jr.’s history shaping “I Have A Dream” speech, I was six years old. It is a pivotal and peculiar moment in my life because it’s when I first decided I wanted to be a communicator. I wouldn’t realize my love for sports until much later in my adolescence but on the day my grandmother played that speech, I knew that I wanted to convey the type of thunder and spirit that I had heard in King’s voice, in my own way with things I feel so passionate about.
It seems quite probable that my way was writing.
Another similarity that I and Dr. King may have, is that we both had a dream. That’s right – I also have a dream. Yet, my dream happens to be about the Detroit Lions making a run in this year’s NFL playoffs.
It is a dream permeated in the back of minds of Lions fans far and wide. Very few of us would actually ever truly believe it – at least until their own eyes saw it in the moment. Outsiders would surely find it comical.
But what’s stopping this dream from becoming a reality? It’s surely not the doubts.
The city of Detroit is primed and ready for the Lions to arise. The Spirit of Detroit statue – draped in the color of Honolulu Blue – is a testament to the town’s long-standing official motto, “We Hope For Better Things; It Shall Rise From the Ashes”.
It’s always been apparent the people of Southeast Michigan are inspired to believe this motto to be true in hope for the rebuilding city of Detroit as well as their oft-losing football team.
Our loyalty and connection with this team have always been as strong in the bad times as it is would be if we were winning championships. And honestly, the Lions winning a Super Bowl for Detroit would equally compare to some of the greatest “finally” moments in American sports history (the Cavs Finals win for Cleveland last year, the Red Sox winning their first World Series in 86 years in 2004 or the Cubs 2016 World Series title).
There’s an atmosphere of grit and soul in the streets of Detroit and I’m sure that few other places could match the sheer energy you feel from it.
Because there are those who will indeed be reluctant to believe in such a claim but if you truly love a team and will not believe then what’s living to you?
And it’s always “It’s just sports, who cares anyways?”. Sports are a sewn fabric of not only American culture and entertainment but the history of man as well.
This dream stays and I’m sure I’m not the only one who believes.
In my dream, I saw it all unfold.
I have a dream that the Lions will beat the Seattle Seahawks on Saturday in a fourth quarter comeback so heart-pounding that it will age the fanbase a couple decades in an hour’s time.
I have a dream that Matthew Stafford then leads his team into Dallas and gets eyebrows raising by making the Cowboys rookie stars look like rookies and winning rather easily over a Super Bowl favorite in the divisional round.
My dream then takes a gigantic turn as the Lions have to walk into the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field and face off with Lions’ fans soul snatcher, Aaron Rodgers. A strip sack by Ziggy Ansah on Rodgers gives enough time for the Lions to march up the field and have Matt Prater kick a 55-yard stunner to win it.
The Lions opponent in Super Bowl LI turns out to be the Pittsburgh Steelers (and I was so certain it would be the Patriots). The three-headed offensive monster that is Roethlisberger-Bell-Brown, has reeked fire on the AFC conference playoff field and experts give the Lions no shot.
And then all of a sudden – the dream starts to white away and I wake up.
I know, I know – you wanted me to at least tell you how they win it. But I would be lying if I told you that my dream showed me that. Because it didn’t. I woke up.
If you want to believe in any dream, it’s best to stay honest with about the details.