Welcome back to our third edition of Mafia Monday, and the first to follow a Bills regular season game… and a win! Mafia Monday is an interactive element where members of the community can get to know each other and build unity by becoming transparent.
This week we chat it up with @tlennon1021, one of the first people to hop on the #BillsMafia bandwagon. You all know him from your Twitter timelines, now let’s get to know him better…
How long have you been a Bills Fan, and what’s your earliest Bills memory?
@tlennon1021: I have been a Bills fan since as long as I can remember. I got one of those Hutch plastic Bills helmets and jersey sets for Xmas when I was 6 and I never looked back. I’m thirty years old and as far back as I can remember, I’ve been a Bills fanatic.
What is your favorite Bills memory?
@tlennon1021: My favorite Bills memory is the opener on 9/10/1989 when we beat Miami in Miami. According to my father, Miami was virtually unbeatable in the 70s and 80s. The whole family was over at my uncle’s house for a huge opening day party. For those young Mafia members, Youtube Buffalo Bills Miami Dolphins 1989. Jimbo led a huge comeback and it culminated in a goal line dive for the winning score. This signaled the beginning of undeniably the greatest era in Bills’ history. In addition, as soon as the game was over, the camera panned on Don Shula. My father was literally in front of the TV flipping the double bird at the screen. Long story short, not only did the Bills record a victory for the history books, I got to see intense profanity from my father. Win-win in my book.
Close second is the home opener in 03. I was there whoopin it up as we WHOOPED on the Pats.
What was the first Bills game you attended? Most memorable?
@tlennon1021: First Bills game was 1988 vs Cincy. I went with a bunch of people and tailgated out of a U-Haul. I had never seen so many people in the same place at the same time. Notable memories from the game include getting separated from my parents and being guided back to the u-haul by a family friend and seeing a guy with full tray off beers go head over heels and get doused with malted hops and barley. The Bills won too, which was good.
Most memorable game I attended was the Home opener in 2003 vs. the Pats. for those of us who were there, the stadium was ELECTRIC! I partied at Kettles before the game and we had the ‘I got a feeling’ song going all the way to the Ralph. As I got to the third level, I heard a tremendous ROAR as Lawyer Milloy was introduced. This was the most intense I have seen and heard the Stadium in all my years going to games. We won the game 31-0 and for that day, it was the happiest and most fulfilled I had ever been leaving the Ralph.
Do you own any Bills jerseys, and if so what ones?
@tlennon1021: I own a Game day TO jersey. Yeah, I know its one of those questionable ones but I plan on picking up a Kyle Williams as soon as I can make it out to OP. Actually, a bunch of the Bills Mafia members have been extremely helpful in locating one.
Favorite current Bill?
@tlennon1021: Tough call here because I feel like every Bills player we have now is so high character I could root for them all equally. For now though, I’d have to say Kyle Williams because at times, I consider myself a ‘Ball of Razor blades’ I like Kyle because he did it the right way. He worked hard to get where he is now and he deserves everything he gets. Marcell Dareus is climbing the ladder rapidly and the guys that have love for the Bills Mafia are always too, i.e. David Nelson, Stevie Johnson, Aaron Williams, Nick Barnett, Shawne Merriman, etc.
Favorite former Bill?
@tlennon1021: This is also a tough one. Jimbo, Thurman, and Andre Reed always were viewed as a 3 headed monster in my book. My mom loved Andre Reed so I am partial to him. I guess I never really latched on to one player in particular, I was always just a Bills fan.
What is your favorite team to watch lose to the Bills?
@tlennon1021: Hands down the Patriots. It hasn’t happened in a while so thats what will make it so much sweeter when we get them this year. It used to be the Phins but NE has usurped them as my most hated team.
Best tailgate food?
@tlennon1021: My buddy @AndrewCerrone makes the BEST stuffed hot banana peppers…Lot 5 Pole 1!
Other sports you enjoy following? If so, favorite teams?
@tlennon1021: I played HS and College Basketball but I don’t really have a favorite team in terms of bball. I married into being a Yankees fan but I will never be one of those ‘Yankees or nothing’ fans. I do enjoy listening to John Sterling call games on the radio in the summer. I know we have some Sox fans in the Bills Mafia but I have nothing but love for them!
Lastly, what does “Bills Mafia” mean to you?
@tlennon1021: This is tough to put into words but I will try. Bills Mafia, for me, is all about support and encouragement. We are all Bills fans, however, what separates us from other fans is that we are always supportive of not only the team, but each other as well. There will be times when other team’s fans try to mess with us and we stick up for one another. Bills Mafia is bigger than one individual and it’s all about family. Like we’ve said from the beginning, Bills Mafia is more than a hastag, it’s a movement.