18 Comments
Feb 13, 2023Liked by Steven Beschloss

It is getting harder every year to overcome the guilt part of the guilty pleasure as we learn more about how damaging football is to players, especially brain injuries. For those at the professional level I can just about see the risk-reward trade off. For college and youth the risk side is way too high.

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It is a celebration of American violence and excess. Schools alter schedules so even kindergartners can stay up and watch but never that I am aware of so citizens can vote. We dress kids well beneath the age of reason in team clothing but for the most part will never let our kids play this violent game. To say this leaves one open to being called unpatriotic. That says it all to me. I like other sports and our kids had played on those teams but none intrudes on a non-fans life like football. Thanksgiving used to be a patriotic unifying day but now it’s just another nonstop football celebration.

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author

I understand.

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Feb 13, 2023·edited Feb 13, 2023Liked by Steven Beschloss

Steven, your words: 'bind us in shared commitment and the ability to transcend our differences' are powerful, and certainly the standard to aspire to. I hope many will reflect on this, and as you said: 'try and remember what unites us really does matter more than what divides us.' I am not knowledgeable about Football, but appreciate that people could come together in a Stadium and in social settings for a Sports event, something that the Covid virus denied us. Through media coverage and replays, I have been able to watch some of the highlights. I look for the positives, and enjoyed the creativity in the commercials, like Ben Affleck at the Dunkin Donuts drive-through window. Humour is not a bad thing, and laughter triggers the release of endorphins, the body's natural feel-good chemicals.

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Feb 13, 2023Liked by Steven Beschloss

Sports are akin - IMHO - to Roman gladiatorial and tribal conflicts staged to distract the masses from tragedies transpiring under their noses.

If only that massive amount of investment and energy were used on solving critical issues - pollution! food insecurity! climate change! reproductive freedom! education! racial equality! mass shootings! etc. - we could probably go a long ways towards solving one every year.

Many friends and family are sports fans but I just don’t see the point.

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Feb 13, 2023Liked by Steven Beschloss

To me, the football game takes a back seat to the spectacle and isn’t any more interesting than a typical Sunday afternoon game unless my team is involved. I’ve found the best way to consume it is at home, with only a few family members present and to time all the food to be ready when I turn on the TV, 5 minutes before kickoff. I’m rarely interested in the entire affair once the halftime show is over and most years that show is meh. Great halftime show this year, however. There are few national shared experiences, and that’s why I watch. Otherwise, I’d rather read a good book!

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I lack any understanding of football but I watch it for the spectacle & maybe a little bit out of patriotism, but then the social issues creep in like who the hell has $6000-$10,000 to toss away on a ticket to a football game? There was something visceral about the game. I enjoy stories about the quarterbacks, the coaches, etc. -The Chiefs just had a spectacular energy. perhaps that came from the bright red uniforms? I don’t understand the rules of football, but I understand the excitement.

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founding

Imagine if you didn't come from a nearby state the total costs of way overpriced hotel, food, tickets, etc probably $20,000 for a couple??? Huh?

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author

I don’t know how people can afford it.

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Feb 14, 2023·edited Feb 14, 2023

They had a guy on who mortgaged his house...

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Your Finish wife! Please give her my best regards. I totally identify with her. I can’t say how many people--both men and women--have tried to explain this game to me over the years (I’ve lived in the states since 1978), and it still is just a violent piling of bodies in a heap to me. I had a student once, a punter (?), and he asked me in Monday morning’s class if I had seen him punt. I had not. But I made it a point to go see him at the next game. He was one of the first to try to explain. This was in the early 90’s. The next game I saw was when my grandson took up the game for about five weeks before he lost interest. I was so happy I didn’t have to sit in any more bleachers. On TV? My husband watches a lot of sports. I put plugs in my ears and watch something sci-fi. Yesterday, I watched the whole first season of The Empress on Netflix. And I learned a thing or two about the father of Franz Josef I, which is of great personal interest to me. I even forgot to cook dinner for my poor husband. Yikes!

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Feb 13, 2023Liked by Steven Beschloss

When my grandson was born, his father, a big fan of the movie Gladiator, named him Maximus. And a sport he has turned out to be. Since toddler age, he has thrown a ball straight at you and caught it when thrown back. Older, an expert at pitching. But his favorite is football. He is now 11, a player of flag football since old enough to join a team. He can slide like pro into base in that sport, fly like the wind in the designated one. He was overjoyed to see a Tampa Bay Buccaneers game with Tom Brady.But his great thrill was to attend a Penn State game. That is our family school starting with my father getting his BA in 1930, MA in '36, then cousins , brother, me, 2 daughters. To be a Nittany Lion is Max's dream. He wears a tee shirt with Sequan Barkley's name on it. I sent a picture of Sequan , body high in the air jumping over the opposition. I rec'd a picture back of Max with both feet in the air, a half Sequan. I worry about the dangers he might face. A friend of mine got a concussion in a high school game and was in a coma for 2 weeks. I said, Max, be a QB, they get tackled on occasion, but it seems they throw the ball, then go sit down.Our QB. Sean Clifford, has been fine for 6 years. But no, Max wants to run, wants to reach that goal post, knock helmets with his team mates, get pats on the rear. He cheered for the Chiefs. I imagine he was as avid a watcher of the Super Bowl as anyone could be. Forget the eats. So, modern day Maximus, the gladiator, will not be fighting tigers in an arena with Caesar watching, but I believe he will be a tiger on that long field of green, running, jumping, feeling pride and glory at reaching the goal post and fulfilling the goal of his dream. Someday, maybe on TV himself in a Super Bowl. We Are.................Penn State.

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I live in the far north east valley far far from Glendale. Most people I know will never go to a Super Bowl game paying six to $10-$20,000 for a ticket is the ultimate absurdity to people trying to stay one step ahead on bills. I didn’t even venture to Scottsdale, which is next-door to my town because of the insane crowds, crowded restaurants, overflowing hotels. Evidently, not everyone is affected by inflation. The Valley of the Sun made out financially over Super Bowl weekend, and in addition -the golf tournament at TPC! It was pizza at home for ordinary mortals!

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Feb 14, 2023·edited Feb 14, 2023

My experience was I had Gainwell to score the first touchdown which would've paid $900 on a $40 bet. Then the ref strikes again at the end of the game. That wasn't even holding in slow motion. Also that jebus ad was horrific. Whoever dreamed that up needs to be fired. Or maybe not, if it gets them to waste millions of dollars running that abomination then I say yay!

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I love football, everything about the game (except the part about players possibly injuring themselves for life). My team is the NY Giants; but they didn't make it into the Super Bowl this year. However, the 2008 game, where Tyree made the helmet catch in the 4th quarter and the Giants went on to become Super Bowl champions will be forever etched in my memory. Every year, the Super Bowl is the biggest football game, on the biggest stage. I enjoy watching those players who have made it to this big game execute their plays, work through their strategies. There is usually a great memorable moment at some point. A big takeaway for that year. While I have my syndical times when I think that these players are paid so highly; and the money could have been used by the medical profession to research cures and to save lives, or something lofty like that for the good of society. However, in a world where there is so much that divides us, so much that is ugly, so much that is broken and needs fixing, I love Super Bowl Sunday when we can escape reality and get lost in this sport, the grace and grit of the game, the singing of the national anthem, the clever commercials, the halftime show, the gathering to put our focus in unity with other Americans; and I am especially moved when the broadcast shows American troops in faraway places gathering for this special event. It is a moment when we can find some unity; and that's a very good thing.

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I also like the idea of making Super Bowl Monday a holiday!

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Yes. A day to catch up on sleep , talk about the great plays, the commercials, the halftime show, and enjoy once again that we had a day of unity

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The wings, sliders and Mahomes were excellent. Everything else...meh. The spectacle has become nearly self-parody. Kinda fitting for the times though. ✌️

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