Superbowl Sunday came and went just as uneventfully as it usually does. I made some sweet and spicy meatballs, threw together a pitcher of sangria and had a few of our faves over to watch the game with us. In contrast to the way we used to celebrate the big game in college, it was a pretty dull day. There was no big party, no money pool, no trash talking and definitely no football paraphernalia or decorations in sight. I actually think it’s safe to say that the past few Superbowl Sundays at the Fells household have been somewhat melancholic. And as long as Danny plays the game and doesn’t make it to the big show, I think that’ll be the norm.
My guess is that if you were to ask any NFL player (who isn’t playing IN the Superbowl) what he’s doing on the day of the big game, he’ll say he’s not doin’ much. He’ll watch the game on Sunday, maybe even give his two cents about a play call or two, but that’s about it. A minimal amount of emotion will be invested in the occasion, and the outcome won’t make much of a difference either way. Exciting one-handed grabs will only earn mere head nods and the thrill of going into overtime will generally be translated into an animated sigh. The concept is one that used to be hard for me to grasp. I couldn’t, for the life of me, understand why football players weren’t among the MOST emotionally invested Superbowl viewers. Weren’t they supposed to be the ones with the true passion for the sport? The ones that truly cared? I was even a little frustrated by the apathetic attitude that seemed to plague every single one of our football buddies on the day of the big game until a friend who used to play in the league recently explained it to me in terms I could understand.
He suggested that him throwing a Superbowl party would be comparable to me having a party for a co-worker who was promoted in front of me. It just wouldn’t make sense. He insisted that I wouldn’t host a celebration for someone I spent countless hours studying and trying to defeat. Someone who didn’t shed a single ounce more of blood, sweat or tears than I did over the course of a career and yet had the opportunity to be named “the best.” Someone who I matched hour for hour in the office and penny for penny in sales. He insisted that I wouldn’t throw a party for someone who ridiculed me to the media and even “talked about my mamma” when we crossed paths. I laughed, but he didn’t. I had never really thought about it that way. When I teasingly asked him if the cardinal sin of jealousy played a role in his anti-Superbowl attitude, he surprised me by assuring me that it absolutely did. I appreciated his honesty. He told me that, no matter what anyone would ever tell me, there isn’t a single guy who’s ever played the game (whether it be in high school, college, or even Pop Warner) that hasn’t dreamed about kissing the Lombardi trophy at one point or another. He also assured me that the closer you get to it, the more you want it. And the closer you get to it, the more it “stings” when you fail. And for a guy like that to say it stings, a guy who played hundreds of hard-hitting games while bearing the agony of broken bones and torn ligaments, well, it must really hurt!
So I don’t really make a huge deal of the Superbowl these days. Maybe, in the future, I’ll break my football shaped glasses and referee striped caution tape back out of storage, but for now I’m just sticking to meatballs. There are two things, though, that still make Superbowl Sunday a reason to celebrate in my eyes…good eats and commercials, of course. Those E-Trade commercials get me every time. Obviously the only thing funnier than a talking baby is several of them. And the Google commercial that aired this year was pretty good too. The one where a guy uses the Google search engine to illustrate every step of his blooming relationship with a girl that he meets in Paris. Pretty romantic stuff. It provided quite the special moment until our single bachelor friend (who will remain unnamed) interjected his own search engine topics once the commercial was over. No, dear friend, the natural sequence of events following the building of a baby’s crib is not always therapy or divorce. And yes, although you were right when you said that you were sure that Megan Fox had to have used a finger double in her Motorola commercial, all that proves is that you need to get out more.
Yup, Superbowl Sunday petty much went as planned. I was somewhat surprised however that the “Kim vs. Kendra” E! headlines didn’t weasel their way into prime time on Sunday. What a let down. The only thing we bet on before the game started was how many times we thought the camera would cut to Kim K throughout the course of the game. It’s possible that I wasn’t watching very closely but I only saw her once throughout the entire telecast. Such a let down.
So, here’s to Superbowl Sunday, all of its glory and all of its hype, and here’s to hoping that one day soon we’ll be swimming in the confetti. Here’s to hoping that we’ll be watching ourselves celebrate on the jumbotron rather than under our own roof saying, “There’s always next year.”