I mean, as a united New England front, we’re temporarily trading in our normal Black and Gold for Black and Shiny Gold on Sunday, yes?
Some of you are probably saying, "No kidding, Hercule. Rooting for Peyton Manning is like rooting for gum disease. It’s just unnatural." Well, it’s not Colt-love I worry about around here. I just want to make sure no one is going into this wishy-washy. Typically in these parts, as you know, we’re only really interested in a title tilt if (a) there’s a local team involved, (b) we have money riding on it, (c) Ray Bourque is somehow involved or (d) someone’s trying to beat the Yankees. Well, I’m not sure the Colts have achieved Yankee villain status yet. That takes years and, like, three times the animosity and humiliation.
But we do have a horse in this race, friend. Actually, two: our dignity and our humanity.
Chapter One: Dignity
Collectively, we have to actively root against the Colts because we don’t like Peyton’s face. If you think he’s in our living room a lot now, wait until ring No. 2. The man will be pitching everything from Oxyclean to Oxycontin.
And if he wins again, you know we’ll hear all about how he’s is the better quarterback than Tom Brady — and the Colts are the real team of the decade while the Steelers are second, and the Pats might as well be the Browns. Sports can make recent history seem like ancient history, and we don’t need America belittling us and trying to tarnish our golden years. Not now. Not when the Yankees have won, the Celtics are breaking down and the Bruins are … um … saving their energy for the stretch run? Way too excited about the Olympics to concentrate? Busy not getting Ilya Kovalchuk? Taking Andrew Ference's green initiative too far by refusing to light lamps?
You get the point. New England is a little fragile right now.
Chapter Two: Our Humanity
All that previous stuff is good reason to temporarily turn into NFC-huggers, but it goes much deeper. The Saints fans deserve it. Not Drunkey McDrunk in the first row with the face paint and beads. I speak of the men and women who have yet to recover from the day their lives washed away. The ones who are still trying to pick up the pieces, and who could use a simple, little diversion.
Somewhere in the wards, there’s a man who needs the escape. And that’s what sport is, at its very best: a break for our brains, a soap opera without the lousy acting. The distraction, for this individual, is the reason we can justify all the money and all the blood that goes into this racket. Somewhere in the Bayou, someone who feels like hell on Saturday will smile on Sunday. Will Real Life return on Monday morning? Absolutely, but my God, give him Sunday.
I realize the same argument can be made for middle America, hit hardest by the economy and job loss and foreclosures, and if that’s your reasoning for the Colts jersey at kickoff, I’ll accept that. But I’m guessing by the delta, there are still nightmares of the floods, heartache from lost loves, anger, hurt and pain.
So let’s ignore the fact that "who dat" is just kind of stupid and teaching our children and our dogs poor grammar.
Let's forget Bobby Herbert already rocked a dress, and things could get really ugly if he actually has something to celebrate.
Let's collectively embrace the Saints with all our might, like they were one of our own.
We will become Title Town again. It may not happen for a while, but it will eventually. In the meantime, I’m hopping on this freaky bandwagon with the jazz music. You’re coming, too … right?
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