Friday, November 29, 2013

And I Didn't Even Get A Toaster

So yesterday, Detroit smoked what was left of Green Bay, Dallas relentlessly marched over an undermanned Oakland team whose quarterback clearly had taken lessons from the Donovan McNabb School Of Underthrowing Open Receivers, and Baltimore and Pittsburgh renewed their rivalry in a series of steel cage matches occasionally interrupted by Bernard Pierce rushes of 4 yards or less.

Schools like Iowa, Marquette, UCLA, Creighton and numerous others generally had their way with lesser opponents, in a decent if not full slate of college basketball games. College football had two games, including the legendary "Egg Bowl" between Ole Miss and Mississippi State that produced overtime and a last-second case of bowl eligibility for the winner.

All of which is well and good, of course. It's nice sitting on the couch post-tryptophan with your loved ones to share the experience of watching large men utterly fail to make arm tackles. But before we get too caught up in the wheres and whyfores of who won, let's just remember one thing - the athletes weren't the only ones working at those games. So by all means let's be annoyed at Wal-Mart and their ilk for driving the floodwaters of commercialism up to the gates of Thanksgiving dinner and starting the shopping frenzy on Thanksgiving day. 

But let's also take a moment and remember that those games don't happen by themselves. That the vendors and the parking lot guys, the refs and the tv camera crews, the scoreboard operators and the janitorial staff, they're all working so we can watch Matt Flynn get handed his ass on a regular basis by the Detroit defensive line. And maybe we're can stop slapping ourselves on the back for not being like those schnooks getting into fights at Wal-Mart over toasters and realize that we're not entirely free from blame for this, either. We can say that the athletes knew what they were in for, and in some cases are paid handsomely for their willingness to perform on the holiday. I just wish, when it came to the beer vendors, we could say the same.

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