For fans, nothing provides more hope than having a competitive team on the field. While many fans may care only about results, for our community we develop an affection for the players as well who put it all on the field.
From a fan's perspective, the last two games have provided hope that many Colorado Rapids fans (myself included, sad to say) were losing. Many began to speak of this as another lost year. We called for changes. It's all understandable, for when hard times hit, fans need someone to blame. And I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I'm not averse to fans calling out the front office or the coaching. This does not necessary constitute negativity, but a passion for the game, for the players, and for the shield.
Yes, that shield! That glorious Burgundy and Blue shield! All the hope for the future, all the passion for the present, all the history from the past (and yes, history is from the past--I get it!) is wrapped up in that sacrosanct shield.* It's funny how we feel a connection to the team and to each other when we see the Rapids shield. Every so often, I see someone wearing it on their hat or shirt, we start up a conversation, then realize that we are a rare breed of soccer lovers in general and Rapids supporters specifically.
We have hope due to that (not-so-) minor adjustment to a 4-3-3 (whether this serves as the magic bullet, I have no idea), we have won convincingly against a top Western Conference team and our archrival.
Hope does not mean all is well in the Land of Burgundy. We still have questions. And those questions should be asked in the spirit of goodwill and a desire to see our community's team prosper. But how good it was to see the last two Saturdays provide the results that we knew (hoped?) this team had.
So stick with the shield, Rapids fans! Wear it proud! When times turn around, you can say, "I stuck with them even at the end of 2014 and the start of 2015." That's what being a fan is about. Loving your team enough to support, and loving them enough to question the present moves and the future vision.
*Speaking of sacrosanct, the definition is "(especially of a principle, place, or routine) regarded as too important or valuable to be interfered with." Can someone explain to me why the colors change on the away kits from the last two seasons?