[caption id="attachment_853" align="alignright" width="300"] You actually can't win an argument against a Patriots fan, because they no longer have a firm grasp on reality.[/caption]
(Note: This is part of a recurring series that launched with the Yankees last week. This week, it's New England's turn in the Smack Zone. We still love you, Pats fans!)
First, let's be clear: There is no way to win an argument with a New England Patriots fan. The arrogance runs too deep.
True minions of Brady and Belichick no longer are capable of humility or rational thought -- of any kind. They are as intractable as a field of volcanic rock, as aloof and unapproachable as an Apple store employee five minutes away from a smoke break.
Patriots fans simply can't be wrong. For evidence of their innate superiority, they unveil four compelling exhibits:
Super Bowl XXXVI.
Super Bowl XXXVIII.
Super Bowl XXXIX.
Super Bowl XLIX.
OK. Championship caliber franchise. Got it. No one is saying New England hasn't gotten extremely proficient over the years at acquiring hardware.
[caption id="attachment_1038" align="alignleft" width="300"] Played memes are played, but sometimes the only way to get through to myopic Patriots fans is to say it as slowly and simply as possible. Small words, y'all.[/caption]
Yet, their very success reveals their weakness.
How? Two main things to remember when attempting to take a Patriots fan down a notch.
One: They cheated.
Two: Their fans respond to success with all the grace of a pack of hyenas, bellowing with frustration that the world is against them.
By the way: They're right about that. The world IS against them.
There's a history here, of course. Patriots fans are what Red Sox fans become during the long, cold New England winters. Take all those years of Fenway bitterness, add an unhealthy dose of sub-freezing and ice-encased fury, toss in years of obviously tainted victory and voila: Patriots fan.
All right. We've established that they are insufferable and deluded. They don't care what you think. Still, even the most rabid Patriots fan has no comeback for these two bits of unassailable history:
One: The Patriots are Eli Manning's Super Bowl squeak toy.
Two: Aaron Hernandez murdered a dude while he was an active, productive and well-loved member of the New England Patriots family.
To expound a bit on Eli: If the younger Manning brother ever joins brother Peyton in the hallowed halls of Canton one day, it will be as a direct result of his and the Giants' mastery of the Patriots in not one, but two Super Bowls.
Without the Patriots, Eli Manning would be in the career neighborhood of Dave Krieg and (hey!) Drew Bledsoe. Good QBs in their day, but hardly Canton fodder.
Thanks to the Patriots, Eli is a virtual lock for the Hall of Fame.
(Yes, we're aware that you have to get to the Super Bowl to lose in the Super Bowl, but Patriots fans are the first to define themselves in terms of championships. Runner-up is FIRST LOSER.)
As for Hernandez ... well, to their credit, even though they knew Hernandez had issues, at least the Patriots didn't wait until he had been convicted before cutting ties. And owner Robert Kraft testified for the prosecution in Hernandez's trial.
That said, YOUR TIGHT END MURDERED A DUDE IN COLD BLOOD. A guy Patriots fans cheered with all their collective heart on Sundays turned out to be a stone, cold killer. How's that taste, Pats fan?
(Editors note: They still don't care.)
Then there are the Twin Gates: Spy- and Deflate-.
Look, we're not going to rehash those infamous instances of cheating here. Besides, Patriots fans are so deep in denial that many of them won't even acknowledge the wrongdoing by Bill Belichick and Tom Brady.
Those who do acknowledge it are sitting in their easy chairs with their fingers in their ears saying, "LA LA LA LA LA LA! I can't hear you! LA LA LA LA LA LA! Brady is God! LA LA LA LA! Not listening! Not listening!"
Sigh. OK. At this point, there is no shame in admitting defeat. Those four Super Bowl rings are tough to argue against -- legit or not.
Winning an argument against a New England Patriots fan must be accomplished in small increments. As they bellow about Brady and Goodell and the God-awful Wells report; as they name their children after Tom Brady and their Great Danes after Gronk; as they wallow in their us-against-the-world self pity, go exercise a form of civil disobedience by sharing something funny from the Twitter account for Tom Brady's Ego.
It's a parody account, but humor often reveals truth. And the truth is, perhaps the best way to win an argument with a New England Patriots fan is to ignore him.
Next week: How to win an argument with a Green Bay Packers fan.