Sunday, February 11, 2024

Let the Game Begin

We spent much of our Super Bowl Sunday at a bookstore because that’s just how we roll.

I’m surprisingly easy to shop for, really. I have a list of books that I hope to read in the near future, and if that isn’t enough there are always gift cards that can be exchanged for books. Last Christmas Kim got me such a gift card, and today was the day we decided to go spend it.

And then some.

We made a good haul, actually. I got a couple of books that were on my list and a couple of others that weren’t but looked interesting. My reading pace has slowed over the last couple of years as my working pace has sped up and the rest of the world has gone mad – it’s a bit of a distraction to watch your country spiral into overt Fascism, barely avoid a coup, and then to have an entire political party actively work to subvert everything that is good about your country while voting for the guilty bastard in the primaries. Takes up some energy watching that, really. I’d rather be reading, but there you go.

So now I have some new books to try to take my mind off things.

We did watch the game, though. You kind of have to. I’ve been slowly losing interest in American football for over a decade now – temporary bumps as my hometown Eagles did well now and then notwithstanding – and I really didn’t have much of a dog in this fight. Dynasties are boring and both teams could plausibly be labeled as such, Kansas City most recently and San Francisco over the long haul. I liked the fact that the San Francisco quarterback was the Mr. Irrelevant of his draft year (i.e. the very last player chosen) and I’ve got family in San Francisco, so I had a slight preference for the 49ers, but having the Travis Kelce And Taylor Swift Show on the Kansas City sidelines meant that if they won then the same right-wing halfwits who think treason is acceptable as long as it’s their guy doing it would freak right the fuck out, and for that reason alone I couldn’t really cheer against the Chiefs either. I could approach the game as a neutral and just enjoy it for whatever happened.

Plus the ads are always fun.

Super Bowl Sunday is also the day that no diet applies. According to the American Medical Association you’re legally allowed to eat anything you want on this day no matter what is on your MyChart, and you might as well take advantage of that fact. We had a festival of salt and fat and it was marvelous, but now it’s over and tomorrow there will be Nutrition again. I’ve reached the age where a significant percentage of what I eat is consumed for medicinal purposes. If I make it to the magical age of 80 I will live on aged cheese, Buffalo wings, and whiskey, but for now one must enjoy such things sparingly.

It turned out to be a good game from a neutral’s perspective, closely fought and with any number of interesting plays, and if the Kansas City victory means we’ve got another year of Dynasty reruns in American football at least I’ll get to sit back and watch the fragile dudebros melt down over Taylor Swift and the vacuous conspiracy theories they’ve invented about her and that has to count for something.

Merry Super Bowl to all who celebrate!


LucyInDisguise said...

"You kind of have to." No, actually, I don't.

The last Superbowl I sat down and watched was XXIII in (I remember as) 1989. Bengals v 49ers. Had $100 on the Bengals to win by 2. The final was 16-20 49ers. Kinda gave up on watching the games after that. Learned one lesson though: I cannot pick a winning team.

I do, however, partake in overdoing it on the snacks. (Of course, I do that anyway, so ...) And I can always watch the Swift/Kelce meltdowns, commercials, and game highlights on YouTube. 😁


David said...

Yeah, I've made money betting against my hunches so don't take advice on winning teams from me.

I do enjoy the game of football when I watch it, however infrequently that ends up these days. And it's just a cultural touchstone in this country.

But I do a weekly poll in my office - every Monday I put up a question on a portable whiteboard and it generates some discussion among the students, which is kind of the point. There are usually a pile of extra comments on the board as well.

Last week's question was:

The best part of the Super Bowl is...
1) The game
2) The commercials
3) The halftime show
4) The fact that the football season is FINALLY over
5) The what?

The commercials won. Other suggestions getting votes were "Nobody in the grocery store," "Puppy bowl," "Superb Owl," "I can eat anything I want," and "Fake football!" (the last being written by one of our European students, I suspect).

So not everyone watches, but it is a conversation starter. :)