By Scott C. Mossman
Hi there, Sooner Gooners. How’s it going? I hope you are enjoying your free membership to SG today. Yes, to be a member of Sooner Gooners you are only required to be an Okie (or Oklahoma transplant in some cases) and to be an Arsenal supporter. That’s all that should be required and that is the way we like it. However, Sooner Gooners does not nor can it exist for free. Brian Perceful, David Chitwood, and I (as well as others) put in unpaid weekly time to run this group and try to grow it the best we can. And yes, we do make money to operate SG from merchandise sales we get from you guys and we are very appreciative to those of you who support those ventures. The reason I am writing all this is to make sure there is an understanding as to why we do it all. Sooner Gooners is a community and at the end of the day, the merchandise, match graphics, Facebook posts, Twitter posts, e-mail newsletter, and YouTube channel are there to get folks to the damn pub by kickoff. Yep, that’s what we’re all about. We want you there and to be a part of it. Obviously, we understand those of you with busy lives, kids, families, weekend jobs, etc. We know not all of you can be there all the time and we are totally good with that, however, the amount of people we have seen for FA Cup finals is near shocking based on what we get week to week. We totally know we will not have 50 people at the pub on every weekend match day, but there are many of us regulars who wonder where some of you come from sometimes and why we hardly see you or barely know your names.
That point brings me to the Facebook discussion group. Ahh the discussion group. Sooner Gooners grew in a really big way because of access on Facebook and people finding us there or sharing our page with people they knew. It has been very good to us and I still really like the amount of discussion we get there. It’s a great way to be able to connect with everyone, especially our friends in Tulsa/OKC we don’t get to see every week. I have a couple of peeves about the group, however. There are some posters in the Facebook group we simply never see at the pubs or hardly ever see. It is certainly not a prerequisite for you to be at the pubs on match days to post in the discussion group, but we would really like to see you sometime if you are using some of our other services. Did you guys know it’s fun to wake up in the morning and drink beer with your friends while you watch Arsenal? No really, it isn’t a punishment. We do it pretty much every week and it’s great fun. We aren’t posting all of those match graphics, match preview videos, blog posts, etc. in hopes they will be forever ignored. Again, we do it all because it’s a hell of a lot more fun to see your faces in person. Sure, I could simply not address the posters in the group who don’t go to the pubs, but I have to ask myself what you are doing using SG services which are run for free when we are not getting anything back from you. Is that fair? I think it is.
My final point is this. We have two incredible football pubs in Skinny Slim’s OKC and George’s Pub. These pubs routinely open their doors early just for us and that is to be seriously appreciated. You may not realize this if you are not a pub regular or semi-regular, but there are some who are essentially keeping those doors open for you for whenever you decide to show up. Again, no one is expected to stop their life for this group when it is inconvenient, but keep in mind that if you love Arsenal and want to be a part of SG in some capacity that it is the faces and wallets of the regulars who keep the party going for when you decide to arrive. Another thing I need to address regarding pubs is tipping. There is one good reason to stay at home if you are a Sooner Gooner and that is if you cannot tip so much as 10-15% of your bar tab. Yep, if you can’t do that then stay home. Slim’s and George’s have been incredible to us and they and their staffs are to be appreciated.
Well, that’s my bit for today. I hope I have not come across as rude to anyone or worded my point too strongly. Sooner Gooners is just about my favorite thing these days and I absolutely love helping to run it. It is very difficult for me and some others who put in a lot of time and effort to see much of our work go ignored much of the time by many. Maybe we should lower our expectations? It’s just that I seem to see so many people declaring their love for Arsenal online who I don’t see much of at the pub.
The SG Blog
Gooners from Oklahoma share their views and insights about Arsenal Football Club!