Sunday, January 21, 2007

On "Beatin' These Teams" and whether or not it is indeed "no big deal"

I grew up in New Orleans. I also watch a lot of football. Perhaps those sentences should be linked with an "ergo" since it seems these days even the admitted non-fans among us are unable to avoid the saturation bombing of Fleurs-de-lis being propagated by the local media as of late.

Some examples:

To put it lightly, it's easy to see how a non-football oriented person can be somewhat irked by the goings on as of late. Luckily I don't quite fall into that category. Although it does happen, I find it difficult to conceptualize growing up in this town without having Saints football burned deeply into one's sense of identity.

What was to follow here was a long drawn out blovation about the following issues:

  • Growing up with the Saints in the Mora era and how it taught me to always prepare for bitter disappointment and to distrust pompous authotity figures like... Jim Mora.

  • What my Dad taught me about watching football and how it bears a close emotional resmblance to watching politics. Both give one occasion to rant wildly about injustice and hypocrisy while maintaining an almost hopeful fascination with the process and possible outcomes.

  • About how all of these elements were in evidence in the 1990 season when the Saints were primed for a Super Bowl run only to be submarined by the pompously stubborn Jim Finks who forced Bobby Hebert to sit out the year. Finks obscenely tried to replace Hebert with the shamefully poor Steve Walsh... a move that can only be interpreted as a big "Fuck You" to Hebert. Saints fans suffered that year. Despite having no QB, the team backed into the playoffs at 8-8 where they met the Bears.. in Chicago.. in the snow. The game was decided when Walsh fumbled and instead of jumping on the ball, he pretended like he was trying to down the ball. The image of Steve Walsh lamely waving his substandard throwing arm.. staring at the ground while the Bears ran the other way with the ball became the perfect metaphor for the lying hypocritical Saints management of the time.

  • More about Buddy D.. and about how he inadvertently named one of my brother's bands.

  • Some attempt at tying these themes together in order to say that being a Saints fan is the ultimate outward expression of being a New Orleanian. Saints fans, like New Orleanians are long-suffering, misunderstood, a little heartbroken, but ever hopeful and always passionate.. and now, post-Katrina, very much out for vengeance.

All of that was supposed to appear here but it reached a point where it felt like too much information in the interest of making a point that everyone reading probably gets anyway. That and I'm freaking out too much.

One more thing. Bono is an enormous douche but for some reason I can't get that angry song about unanswered prayers out of my head this morning.

Who Dat!

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