Monday, January 21, 2008

An Appreciation: Second Thoughts About Georgia Frontiere and Moving the LA Rams

By Allen Bacon
Bosco: The Blog

I make no excuses for the fact that I used to hate Georgia Frontiere. You see, Madame Ram, as we used to call her, moved my football team, the Los Angeles Rams, to St. Louis.

I hated Georgia Frontiere when she owned the Los Angeles Rams and I hated her even more when she moved my team away from me. It was like a piece of my childhood, which I always assumed was going to be around forever, was suddenly torn away along with my memories of Roman Gabriel, Merlin Olson, Rosie Greer, Vince Ferragamo, Jack Snow, the Youngbloods, the Fearsome Foursome, Eric Dickerson and George Allen.

I read this week that Georgia Frontiere passed away from breast cancer at the age of 70. I read her obituary and the account of her life in the local paper and the whole episode of moving the Rams suddenly made sense to me.

You see, the Rams were not an original Los Angeles team. They were taken away from the city of Cleveland in 1947. In fact, they were the first major professional team to move to California. So I imagine that the Cleveland fans had the same feeling about the Rams owner at the time that I did for Georgia Frontiere. The St. Louis Cardinals football team was eventually moved to Phoenix, leaving a void for Eastern - Missouri pro football fans.

Georgia Frontiere filled that void. Originally, from St. Louis, she brought her hometown a team that it so desperately wanted. She owned the Rams. She brought the Rams to St. Louis. In fact I think now that the fans of St. Louis appreciated the Rams more than the Los Angeles fans. Imagine my chagrin when the St. Louis Rams won a Super Bowl...something the Los Angeles Rams never did.

I also realized this week that Georgia Frontiere was the essence of what I find compelling in some people and particulary in some women...the type of woman that I would want my daughter to be...strong, confident, life on her own terms. So maybe she is guilty of taking my football team away.. but one city's loss is another city's gain and Los Angeles didn't make the correct overture to keep the Rams at the time. I saw the pathetic dwindling crowds at the end too. I was one of the few people in the stands at the end. I would look up at the people in the luxury boxes of Anaheim Stadium and see people watching the Raiders or another game on television..not the one on the field. Not too many people cared about the Rams at the end. The people in St. Louis did and Georgia Frontiere was smart enough to follow the money and brave enough to follow her heart. One thing she was not guilty of is being a weak, non-passionate, dependent, and cowardly person.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It took guts to move the Rams. So many hate calls I am sure. Too bad she died of breast cancer, a terrible way to go.