By Jeff Keiser
I'm 51 and have been a Bengals fan my entire life. I have a separate closet to store my vast collection of shirts, jerseys, hats and other Bengal regalia accumulated over the past 50 years.
My most memorable game is probably the 1981 Forrest Gregg Freezer Bowl. I was 16 and unlike many who SAY they were there, I WAS there and have the ticket stub to prove it!
My wife, Tracy, and I are season ticket holders and have built deep lifelong friendships with many fellow "Who Dey" fans in our section. We love our section, so much so that the majority of us decline any opportunities for "better seats" so that we can stay together.
We gather several hours before every game and make it a habit to tailgate in different places throughout the season which is our favorite ritual. We've pregamed at Longworth Hall, the Banks, both sides of the river and pretty much every parking lot available over the years. It's a great way to meet new people and experience all the different ways the Bengal Nation celebrates and shows their support for our favorite team.
Ninety percent of the time you'll spot me wearing one of my custom made outfits. My three favorites being my orange jumpsuit, my striped orange and black overalls and my head-to-toe camo ensemble. All three are truly a sight to see, if I do say so myself.
One of our most creative and memorable tailgates was for last year's game versus the Redskins in the U.K. Although we did not make the trip, we continued our "home game ritual" nonetheless. Given the time difference, we began our festivities at 5:30 in the morning at my brother's home on the West Side, complete with bonfire, cornhole, Bud Light and three dozen or so dyed-in-the-wool, orange and black clad fans. Many of us took advantage of an unused vacation day that Monday to recuperate, but dang did we have a great time.
I'd have to say our biggest thrill to date has been the Thursday Night Football pregame event on November 5, 2015. We were invited to The Fan Zone with a select few fellow season ticket holders for the Super Bowl's 50th anniversary. Being a lifelong, diehard Bengals fan, hanging out with Ickey Woods, Anthony Muñoz and the Ben-Gals for a few hours was most definitely a "Big Dang Deal" for us, not to mention seeing the official 50th Vince Lombardi Trophy up close and personal.
Bottom line: we are Bengals fans, through and through! Whether we're undefeated or 0-and-whatever, we support our Bengals. Who Dey!