As a long-suffering Lions fan, I've learned to appreciate the things they've taught. Things like the brief moment of hope before the season begins, or the benign satisfaction of a meaningless last second win after already being eliminated from the playoffs.
But over the years, the one thing I've enjoyed most from the Lions is an urban myth or rural legend, and it is the gift that keeps on giving.
No, this isn’t another version of steroided Slender Man or a tale of cow-tipping gone tragically wrong, but rather a very plausible story of a Michigan gambler who won it all because the Lions lost everything.
So the story goes something like this:
A friend or buddy of yours tells you about their uncle or co-worker or a neighbor’s gardener’s ex-roommate. Let's call that person: "Cousin Let It Ride." Cousin Let It Ride became a millionaire by betting on the Lions in Vegas.
Supposedly, as the story goes, Cousin Let It Ride is in Vegas during the summer of 2008 and Cousin Let It Ride had already won some money on a game of chance, and was a few drinks deep, and heads over to the sports betting section. Then, Cousin Let It Ride starts making crazy bets and decides to throw a hundred dollars on a bet that the Lions would not win a single game that season.
For those who have forgotten, or never cared, 2008 is important because it’s the year that will live in infamy amongst the diehard fans of the silver and Honolulu blue. Why? Because that's the year the Lions set a new low in the NFL by losing every single game! Yep all 16 of them.
So with each loss, Cousin Let It Ride becomes more and more excited each week. And with about two games left in the season, Cousin Let It Ride gets a phone call from Vegas. The person from Vegas supposedly offers a $200,000 buyout from the bet. Cousin Let It Ride then asks, "How much is the payout if the Lions keeps losing?" and gets a reply: $2 million. Cousin Let It Ride then checks the schedule. The Lions' last two games were against the Saints and the Packers, so what does Cousin Let It Ride do?
They let it ride… of course!
And the Lions came through in spectacular fashion by losing big, and somewhere in our great state, there’s a Michigander who won $2 million because the Lions lost all 16 games.
I realize that this story is probably too good to be true. However, the same part of me that clings to the fantastical belief of a Lions Super Bowl Championship wants to believe it.
And if it’s not true, it’s still a great story that only Lions fans can truly appreciate. Well, us and maybe Cleveland Browns fans.
By the way, if you have proof that a millionaire Cousin Let It Ride is out there, have them give us a call at 1-888- 203-1136 or just send them to the donor support page at MichiganRadio.org.