I’m not the world’s most fervent (American) football fan. Living in Detroit, where the home team hasn’t won a championship since Eisenhower was president, how could one be? But this year it was easy to get somewhat hooked on superlatives; one team on the verge of a completely undefeated season, including the playoffs (that would be the New England Patriots), and one team playing in a refrigerator — that would be the Green Bay Packers. (Green Bay is located in Wisconsin, and is in no way to be mistaken for warm in January.)
Except Green Bay lost the semifinal tonight, even though the weather, −4°F during the game, with a wind chill of −24°, seemed to be in their favor. Cold, frozen heartbreak abounds.
Packer Bear came from my mom, who won him in a raffle at her apartment building last year. Back in the day of the great quarterback Bart Starr, Mom was a fan of the Packers. (Mr. Starr was quite the dashing sort back then, which helped catch Mom’s eye, perhaps.) She gave me the Packer Bear because she didn’t really have any place for it in her apartment, and it seemed a little too big to give to an infant, which my great niece Sophia was at the time.
Anyway, in case you came here to learn this (as if), it will be New England (the undefeated team) versus the New York Giants in the Super Bowl in two weeks. For their reward, they get to play in sunny, warm suburban Phoenix, Arizona, a huge improvement over the wintry conditions both teams suffered today. (It was also very cold in Boston, where New England defeated San Diego earlier today.)
That’s probably more than anyone wanted to hear about football, eh?