I was born in Indiana in the 70s, which is to say I was born in a state WITHOUT any pro team in any sport (for you youngsters the Colts were still in Baltimore until the early 80s and the Pacers were in the ABA until it went belly up). Now, in the 70's it seemed my life was dominated by kids who were from two schools of thought: A. they were either a Cowboys or Steelers fan as they were damn near all the 70s SBs, or B. they were a Bears (proximity to Chicago) or Bengals (proximity to Ohio and NOBODY but a Cleveland native likes the Browns).
This left me in a bit of a pickle, as I just downright HATE being like everyone else. So... much to the dismay of you PB21, my eight year old self went to the Sears Catalogue and found the page on NFL Helmets and chose one... that awesome red helmet with a black falcon and stripe up the middle. In doing so I also decided in my infinite wisdom to adopt EVERY Atlanta franchise, OH THE HUMANITY OF IT ALL!
Suffering is an Atlanta Fan's favorite pastime, but the thing I have always hated about being a Falcons Fan in particular was the 98 season. How many fans out there had a part of that magical season spoiled by bandwagon fans? I felt like I did more explaining to outsiders that I was a 'true' Falcons Fan then enjoying the success of my team. I even carried around a picture of me decked out in Silver/Red/and Black Falcons gear at 9 years old!
Anyway PB21, I think my final thought is this. It doesn't matter why or how you are a fan (helmet choice, father's team, birth place, etc), just that you are a fan that can bleed your team colors and go into a corner and hyperventilate when the birds win the NFC Championship in overtime