A new era has ended a bit more literally than usual. The Buffalo Bills enjoyed a stadium name that sounded like it fit even though it was purchased. New Era Field could’ve been christened after optimism if you were unfamiliar with the sponsorship. But a symbol of looking forward has been terminated.
Buffalo franchises should excel even more while paired. The Bills playing in a place named for New Era felt like area forces combining on the level of putting Bison Dip on a Sahlen’s hot dog. But, like Danny DeVito and Rhea Pearlman not being together forever, some seemingly natural partnerships dissolve.
Locals can still feel proud the league’s hat is also Buffalo’s unofficial people-topper. Being able to shop at the haberdashery headquarters is as much of a Buffalo experience as smelling the Cheerios.
A company founded a century ago by a German immigrant in the same town where the Bills settled 40 years later seemed like an ideal free agent signing. But so did Nick Foles moving to Jacksonville.
Cutting costs isn’t as fun a hobby as you’d think. Everyone is trying to cope with a global shutdown that’s made it tough to afford Aldi, much less luxury items like chapeaus.
Companies are handed toxic waste and scolded for how they dispose of it. The only thing more painful than layoffs is firing everyone after shutting down. It’s as easy to tell businesses how to stay afloat as it is to know what trades should’ve been made. Why don’t managers listen?
The name drop brought out partisans unusually attached to the name Ralph Wilson Stadium. An awkward corporate label beats a monument to ego from an owner who didn’t spend to glorify it. At least Jerry Jones throws money to back up arrogance.
Turning down the easiest revenue since selling beer was another lost opportunity in a tenure packed with them. Jaded fans may remember the first owner justifying his name on the venue instead of a paying business by noting he could only get a free agent linebacker for the sum and yelling at the television for him to do just that.
Speculation on what the venue will be called next started faster than John Brown. I know just which company should cough up a couple million bucks to have fans say its name.
Some candidates are so obvious that Kevin Gilbride might have called them. Wegmans came to mind as reflexively as I grab a container of cannoli dip. And Labatt is as easy an option as a smoothly drinkable lager. Call it the The Sub or The Case, respectively. Delaware North might offer a subtler take. Guessing what we’ll call it is way more fun than asking what keeps Buffalo from hosting more employers who could pony up enough to buy the title.
Having enough ducats to acquire a giant billboard placed outside the stands around a sports field is a byproduct of profitability. The sales pitch revolves around assurances that longterm benefits outweigh how potentially interested conglomerates can’t presently afford bus fare.
You’d think a company would be able to reach an agreement to defer payments, especially since the downturn can’t last forever and the Bills are perchance poised to finally be divisionally competitive. But even things that should work out often don’t in case you’re a new fan and thus expect pleasant conclusions.
A stadium that presently features a blank space where a name should go feels like the commercial equivalent of replacing a front office. Anyone who’s chosen to cheer wants involved parties to succeed. I’m rooting for a product I’m affiliated with voluntarily, as it’d be a sign things are thriving in Buffalo besides the Bills.
Investing in hats is way more fun than buying some other company’s stocks. My New Era stash might be the most valuable asset in my will. Some lucky beneficiary will receive numerous Buffalo sports, Syracuse University, and Star Wars headwear options. As for a specific one that just turned obsolete, didn’t anyone think of my New Era New Era Field cap? Now I have to treat it as a throwback. I’ll wear it with my Drew Bledsoe navy jersey.
I can’t denounce those who flaunt fashion labels when I make sure there’s a flag on every hat I possess. New Era’s head hood ornament means sporting logos from more than one team I back.
I don’t dream of heading outside without wearing one. My old-timey head-covering habit makes it seem like I’m from the previous ‘20s, which is fittingly when the company in question started. I’m happy a local outfit has worldwide prominence and cheer for it to remain so.
The inherent unhealthiness won’t stop my emotional devotion to a company. Hope without a financial stake may seem irrational, but so is rooting for a football team. Cheering for wins is part of placing faith in a product over which you have zero control.
The local football club finding a new namesake for their workplace would be a good sign for business. As for the previous namer’s products, I’m still wearing New Era hats like they’re a uniform, just like I wish the stadium still was.
Editor’s babble: New Era seemed such a fitting name for a football team finally pulling itself out of the 7-9 forever syndrome. Here’s hoping the next name is as good a fit (pun intended). Thanks, as always, to Anthony Bialy for always bringing us some sass. You can find Anthony on Twitter @AnthonyBialy.