Extra Credit: Giving thanks to all who consider themselves “BillsMafia”

Photo from teepublic.com.

Giving thanks on Thanksgiving is the reason for the season, or so they say. Like many holidays, Thanksgiving evolved from celebrating a fabulous meal with family to endless football and Black Friday – along with horrifying air and road travel and heaven only knows how many arguments over the dinner table.

How we choose to define “family” has changed even more than how we celebrate the day. Families today are defined by love much more than by biology alone. But it even gets more complex when you consider we now live in ‘bi-reality’; that our lives have a parallel existence online and in physical reality.

On this Thanksgiving holiday, I’d like to have a moment of your time to thank you for all you do as a member of the BillsMafia. It’s highly unlikely anyone who is not a Bills fan is reading this, so it’s probably safe to assume the vast majority reading these words are part of BillsMafia.

BillsMafia evolved from an online group of Bills fans who suffered together in cyberspace. Before the days of social media, fans like myself who live in far flung places were only connected to their Bills ‘family’ by way of Shout! magazine.

Before NFL Sunday Ticket we were left clinging to every word from Chris Berman’s mouth on ESPN. And “BB” … before Berman … it was a week-late article by Larry Felser from the Buffalo Evening News shipped through the mail. It wasn’t easy being a Bills fan back in the day.

If there’s any need for evidence to redefine the term “family”, social media’s creation of BillsMafia is Exhibit A.

ORCHARD PARK, NY – DECEMBER 18: A shirtless fan cheers during the first half of the game between the Buffalo Bills and the Cleveland Browns at New Era Field on December 18, 2016 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images).

We bicker like siblings, create constant psychodrama and celebrate glorious moments like no other fan base on earth. We live, breathe and bleed for the love of each other and our community – be it physically in the homeland of WNY or online by way of social media, radio and media productions.

And most of all, we support each other when one of us suffers.

On this Thanksgiving, I’m giving thanks to our BillsMafia family and for what incredible things we bring to life with our love and generosity toward one another. All the smashed tables and internet bullying cannot hold a candle to the creation of 26shirts.com or showing our love to organizations like the Andy Dalton Foundation.

I consider myself extraordinarily blessed to live in a time where I am able to reconnect with my roots in Western New York and celebrate the few triumphs and the many failures we’ve experienced that help define our collective character.

Thank you, BillsMafia. You are the ultimate FAMbase.

Editor’s babble: If too much tryptophan doesn’t send me into a food coma I might be able to figure out how to cope with this rush of success from the Sabres and my alma mater, UB. Fortunately we have the Bills to keep us from ever getting too full of ourselves. Enjoy your day, be safe and most of all, thank you for reading our blog.

About Robyn Mundy

Robyn Mundy is Editor-in-Chief of the BillsMafia blog at BillsMafia.com. She's a retired oncology nurse & psychotherapist who loves to write about her life-long passion for the Buffalo Bills, and occasionally something of clinical or social relevance. Robyn lives with her husband Gary and their dogs in the foothills of the glorious Big Horn Mountains of Wyoming. Robyn is also a proud founding sponsor. Follow her on Twitter at @robynmundyWYO.

2 Replies to “Extra Credit: Giving thanks to all who consider themselves “BillsMafia””

  1. Always love your take on all things Buffalo Sports…and our mutual fondness for the kid…lol. Good news is the Sabres success should take some pressure off him for the rest of the year! Trusting the process….
    Proud Bills Mafia member for life.

  2. Robyn,
    As a long-time Bills fan (1960 – present) and like you, living in another part of the country, I’ve been surrounded for most of my adult lief by insufferable (and largely lukewarm) Dallas Cowboy “fans” many of whom can’t even begin to comprehend the true meaning of the word. I suffered through that wide-right field goal attempt the four Super Bowl losses, but mostly with listening over and over to those insufferable “How ’bout those COWBOYS!” shouts after the last two defeats at their hands. As I watched Thurman Thomas’ #34 being retired I was once again happy to realize what it means to truly be a fan of this team. Go Bills!