By the time I finish writing this, a bazillion-six bloggers will have blogged about Superbowl XLIII. But because I absolutely do not care about either team, I thought I'd make an observation.
I think John Madden might have a secret.
First of all, it was a much closer, much more exciting game than we thought it might be, going in. This year our division sucked harder than a Venezuelan call girl, evident in the Cardinals going to the big game with a winning record of... 9. Ugh. That's the best the west could do this year. Not a great showing. We didn't think the Steelers would have a particularly tough time beating them, and were honestly amazed that the spread was something like 6.5 points.
But it was a white-knuckle game, despite our pessimism. The officials were not calling for Pittsburgh all the time (a pleasant surprise as a Seattleite), and Warner statistically outplayed Roethlisberger (who is apparently the earthly avatar of the god of football here on Earth, according to the commentators). In all fairness, Pittsburgh's 100-yard end-zone interception return was a truly amazing play -- overall, they actually earned this victory*. But it was because Arizona made them earn it.
Maybe because I really didn't care about the outcome (except we did root for Arizona simply by virtue of them NOT being Pittsburgh) I found I was picking up a lot more of the commentary chatter, and for some reason it took on a distinctly homoerotic dimension. Perhaps it was repeated use of the terms "penetration", or how every goddamn time Madden commented on a play, he would refer to the player thusly:
"He's a big, strong guy, and when you're big and strong..."
"He's got big, strong hands..."
"He's absolutely huge..."
"A big, strong player..."
"Big and strong..."
Swear. To. Gawd. It almost became a drinking game. Of course, the "big and strong" commentary was inevitably followed by Madden drawing two circles on the screen, followed by an arrow thrusting through the middle -- perhaps to illustrate the tight-end penetration he was talking about. In any case, it made me see John Madden in a whole new light, and made for some entertaining living room commentary of our own.
* As opposed to it being handed to them by officials.