Friday, February 11, 2011
Yes. My favorite Super Bowl remains last year's, when I got to see my childhood home team, the New Orleans Saints, win the Super Bowl, but I had a great time watching the Green Bay Packers win Super Bowl XLV.
For one thing, the golden arm of the Packers' quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, helped me check, "Win it all in fantasy football," off my bucket list this year. I normally play fantasy football with a group of friends I made in grad school. That league is twelve years old, and we're all pretty casual players. I was more casual than even most of them until this year, though. That would change...
The NFL was to begin play in a week or so, and I'd heard nothing from my old league's commissioner. I didn't want to spend enormous amounts of time on fantasy football, but I did want to play. So, when Brian Phillips emailed the folks from the Houston Objectivism Society about starting a league, I joined. Then, about three days before the start of the "real" season, I found an email I'd missed from my usual league's commissioner, who was too busy with a baby to run the league and wanted to hand it over. Not wanting to see our old league fizzle out (and satisfied that I wouldn't be consumed with the task), I took the job -- and decided that, now that I was commissioner, I'd do something novel this year: I would try. Until this year, I'd had a few barely-winning seasons here and there, but never made the playoffs.
Neither team exactly had a dominating record, but both were good enough to make the playoffs. One was 8-6 and the other 8-5, but I'd made some shrewd pick-ups from waivers and, most important, didn't let being at or below .500 late in the season cause me to throw in the towel. My Boston Night Riders (a character-limited play on "The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere") won the HOS championship and my other team came in second in my usual league. (Commissioners went 0-2 in those games.) But enough of that...
I also have, for quite a while, liked the Packers, anyway. (And, even if I didn't, their fans roasting a bear before the NFC title game with Chicago might have won me over.) So the wife and I donned green and yellow and headed over to another couple's house to watch the game. That couple has a young son that we sometimes baby sit, and we all noticed during the game that he would join me in shouting, "Go, Packers!" So I started hamming it up. I shouted more gruffly and began to shake my fist in the air. And I didn't let commercials get in the way, either. Someone got such a kick out of that she either took pictures or a short movie clip of it on her phone.
Two great Super Bowls in a row! Last year offered lots of suspense for me, and I marveled at how much work went into the Saints' win. This year, I had a great time as a more casual fan.