Wow. The first SB I have seen in over 5 years that I didn't get up in the middle of the night to watch. No 03:00 alarm clock. No gallons of coffee. Plenty of beer, food, and family to watch the game with.
I have installed a 42" Panasonic flat screen plasma HD TV. The T-Man calls it a "Flatsma". I installed a Samsung surround sound system and hid all the wiring by going wireless to the back channels and then using raceway to hide the rest of the wiring. It's a lot easier than going through your attic to drop wiring and then fish through the wall for it.
Needless to say we had awesome seats and I revisited one of our old California customs by cooking fajitas to serve at halftime. Of course we had too much food and too much beer but hell, it's the Super Bowl which is really the last bit of the holiday season and the last big winter party.
Lot's of other folks have commented on the "Catch", Manning, 18-1 and so on so I won't pontificate except to say that every person in our house jumped up with joy and high fived when the Giants scored that last TD.
You have to pick a reason to root for or against a team one way or another. When the Rams played the Titans I was really torn. As a kid and young adult I was a die hard Oilers fan and then as an adult I became a Rams fan. Both those teams fled their long suffering and loyal fans for money, money, money and then built up great teams. I wanted them both to lose. I searched and searched for a reason to like or dislike one more than the other. I then looked at the rosters and found that the Titans had 6 players from USC and the their coach, Jeff Fisher, was a former USC defensive back. Done. I rooted for the Titans even though they lost.
For this game it was easier. I'm not a Patriots hater like some others are. I actually like the Giants even though they are not my first choice team. I have seen them play in LA against the Rams and Raiders and once in 1993 I saw them in a playoff game at the Meadowlands. Really, I did!
They were a wild card against the Vikings and I was living in Philadelphia. My roommate and I took a chance and drove up the 90 miles to try and score a ticket. It was about 15 degrees and blowing like mad. We agreed we would spend up to $200.00 each for any kind of ticket just to say we went.
We found a miserably cold guy who had two tickets and was willing to give them to us for face value. We could not believe our luck. We had planned to tail gate whether we got in or not as our fallback plan was to find a Giants friendly sports bar to watch the game. No problem finding one in New Jersey for sure.
We parked next to a family of Ginats fans who are season ticket holders. Grandpa, dad, and son, along with a cousin. We hung out with them and shared our food and beer as did they. They were great folks and true blue Giants fans. Grandpa had season tickets as far back as the polo ground days. They informed us that Giants fans and Jets fans are from entirely different worlds just like the Rams and Raiders had such different fan bases.
When they looked at out tickets they were surprised we got them so cheap and said that while they looked real they did not recognize the seat locatijon. That caused us some trepidation as we now wondered if we had not been hornswoggled.
Game time came and we went to the turnstiles. Yep, the tickets were real and now we just had to find our seats. The usher looked at out tickets and took us to an elevator. We went up and were let out on the club level. Hey! Not so bad! Club level, seat beverage service, covered and no wind. We then found another usher who looked at our tickets, whistled and said ,"Follow me." He led us to the holy land of Gianst Stadium. Yep, we had scored tickets to a luxury box.
We went in and milled around for a few minutes and it was not long before a guy came up and asked us who we were. We were so out of place. We were bundled up for the Iditarod dog races and these folks all had on businesss suits and the girls were dressed to the 9s. We explained how we got the tickets and one of the guys was incensed. He wanted to know the name of who sold then to us. I told him we did not know but that we bought them fair and square and that it entitled us to a seat. He wanted us to leave and we stood our ground and said we just wanted a seat. We did not mean to crash their party but we need a place to watch from. He went to get an usher. While this guy was gone we chatted with some of the other folks who were really friendly. They apologized for the rude guy but said it was his suite and they were some kind of brokers or traders or something. They told us that wew were welcome as it was apparent that we were not the average type fan who buys scalped tickets.
In came a guy in a suit who worked for the Giants. He was super aplogetic to us and showed lots of deference to the suite holders as it was apparent that this suite was ultra expensive. He asked us to wait a minute and we just hung out in the corner while the national anthem was being played. He showed up a few minutes later with two new tickets and siad these were VIP tickets that were not picked up at Will Call. He asked if we would take these instead.
They were 5 rows from the field on the 45 yard line. Oh yeah! We took them. He also escorted us down there, grabbed the usher for that aisle and told him to have some one check on us every quarter to see if we needed anything. Also the suite owner realized that we were just a couple of lucky stiffs who scored tickets and not party crashers so they loaded up our back packs (pre 9-11 days) with beer and sandwiches in wrappers before we left.
Needless to say. Great game, the Giants won. We partied in the parking lot afterward and then drove back to Philly. No one beliveved us when we told them what happened but Mark and I know it really did. I still have the ticket stubs for both seats.
That was my reason for rooting for the Giants on Sunday. The team I wanted to win did. I was surrounded by family. I had legal beer and watched at home on my dream entertainment system. It was all great except for one thing. In the back of my mind during the entire game I thought about my friends in Iraq. I knew they were all bleary eyed, tired and hoarse from yelling at TVs on the other side of the world. I had a beer and when I was outside at the BBQ working the fajitas I had one silent tear come down my cheek. It was easy to hide it as it was smoky and that gave me a plausable excuse for having a weak moment.
Here is to you my brothers and sisters. May you come home soon and have a Super Sunday like I did.