Thierry doesn't care what anyone else thinks about Arsenal.
We all lived through yesterday, and we all read the SBNation piece about Arsenal's perceived status in the Big Club Club this morning. There's nothing more to talk about there. I'm choosing to turn those frowns upside down, and choosing to write about how Arsenal are still, and will always be, my favorite non-baseball sports team.
I've been a fan since 1992ish. I've seen a lot of awesome things, and a lot of not-so-awesome things. This is the nature of sports - there's always good and there's always bad. But the other constant is me - I have been a fan no matter what. I express my displeasure - and I'm sure my non-soccer friends from the early days are thrilled that I now have the internet to bore with my ramblings rather than boring them with things they dont' care about - but at the end of the day, I'm still watching Arsenal all the time, I still read news about Arsenal, and I still care very deeply about something that can by its very nature never care about me in return. Is that weird? Sure it is, but it's also a lot of fun.
Sports are supposed to be fun. They're a diversion, an entertainment, a way to forget the bills and the mortgage and the cat vomit on the carpet and the annoying coworker and all that stuff. The problem is, sports are also tribal; my tribe is better than yours, your tribe is all a bunch of losers, etc. Those two concepts don't jibe for most people - they can't get past the tribalism because they see it as part of the fun.
Don't misunderstand me - I can be as tribal as the next person. I am, after all, the person who changed the desktop of the computer of a person I had never even met at a friend's office one night because it had Tottenham wallpaper on it (I put up a big picture of Tony Adams. It was brilliant). But at the end of the day, I take that for what it is - a bit of fun. If he had done the same to me, I would have laughed.
I guess what I'm saying is, when you read articles like this morning's SBN piece, read it and disregard it. Do not let other people define how you see your favorite team. Do not worry about how other people feel about Arsenal, or where other people see Arsenal's place in the fictional strata of Big Clubs or Top Four or whatever else. All that matters is how you feel, and all that's important is that, no matter what, you are still an Arsenal fan. That's what's important.
Arsenal are us, and we are Arsenal. Nobody else matters.