Fan Essays: 'Spider Lockhart' Tells His Story

I haven't given you guys one of the 'fan essays' submitted for the Maple Street Press in the past few days. I do, however, have a few more.

Today, Jim Comerford, known around BBV as 'Spider Lockhart,' tells us what the Giants mean to him and his family. Read it, and you will understand why he chose the 'Lockhart' moniker here.

In 1964 I was 10 years old, and doing anything I could do to get some pocket change. Shoveling sidewalks, mowing lawns, delivering papers, going down the creek beds looking for two-cent deposit bottles. When my mother suggested an easy way to make 25 cents a week, I jumped on it. "All you have to do" she said, "is sit in front of the television with your father every Sunday afternoon, but don't tell him I am paying you."

I had no idea what I was watching, but I knew that Spider Lockhart and Joe Morrison were heroes, and that Ernie Koy was able to draw roughing the punter plays time after time by pretending that he got hit. The Giants finished 2-10-2 that year. Year after year it was ‘maybe next year' by mid-season. Guys like Homer Jones, Pete Gogolak, Rob Carpenter, Fred Dryer, Ron Johnson, Brad Van Pelt, John Mendenhall, Beasley Reece, Bob Tucker, Doug Van Horn those were my heroes. Not Huff, Tittle and Gifford. Not LT, Bavaro and Simms. But those guys that suffered along with me week after week, that played their hearts out until the last play of the last game of yet another catastrophic season. We laughed our heads off when the plane flew over the stadium dragging a banner behind that said "Twenty years of lousy football and we are sick of it".

But we loved our Giants.

Oh, how we hated Dallas. The ball always bounced where they wanted it, as if they somehow were controlling the magnetic field of the earth. And they played like robots, with a robot head coach. Eleven games in a row they beat us. And my father and I sat through every game, every week, for 20 years. In a family of six kids, the Giants' games were the only time when I had my father to myself.

My young wife had to understand. Sunday afternoon is for my Dad and for the Giants, just me and my Dad. I know that means that every weekend is ruined during football season, but I want my 25 cents. In 1984 we beat Dallas in the first game after losing to them twice the year before. I got stuck in traffic on my way to my Dad's for the second Dallas game, arriving late, we were already blowing them away. For the second time. In one season. We had been waiting 20 years for this, and it had been worth the wait.

That very same night, my father passed away peacefully in his sleep, I was the last one to see him alive. You, the New York Giants teams from 1964 to 1984, you didn't give me a Super Bowl win. You gave me something far, far more valuable. You will always be in my heart because you never gave up. And neither did we.

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