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February 4, 2013Well, the pro football season is over and the ultimate game has been played. (As former Dallas Cowboy Duane Thomas one said, "If it is the ultimate game, then why do they play it next year?")
The Ravens and 49ers put on a great show - not as good as Beyonce at halftime, but still - and the commercials were fairly entertaining, so in my book the Super Bowl was a success.
Since I last had a "favorite" professional football team back in the early 1970s - when I was in junior high and lived and died with Deacon Jones, Roman Gabriel and the Los Angeles Rams - the game itself is mostly about having an excuse to throw a great party. That said, this one had its moments.
First of all, I'm not really about a fan of either Harbaugh. If I had to pick, and nobody's making me, I'd pick John, who seemed more the grown-up until his middle school girl tantrum during the lights-out delay. (My apologies to every middle school girl.) They are both pretty full of themselves, Jim's a bully, and I could have done with neither of them in the game, or all the blah, blah, blah about "Harbowl" leading up to the ultimate game.
(I mean, really, is there anything in the world more self-important that the NFL's Super Bowl? The Roman Numerals, the ultimate game, the way-too-long halftime. Wait a minute, that was Beyonce up there, with a Destiny's Child reunion as a bonus...scratch the last part of that statement...)
Once the game started it looked like it only started for one team. The 49ers looked like they start it was a 6:30 kickoff, not a 5:30 kickoff. The Ravens took control of the game, no doubt inspired by trying to win for Ray Lewis, one of the kindest, most gentle, Christian men in the history of the world. I know this is true because that's all I heard over the past two weeks.
Except for the part about double murder he had nothing to do with and six kids with four different women but you get the idea.
Baltimore played like the better team for most of the game until the lights went out in the Superdome. After the half-hour delay the momentum switched and the 49ers scored 17 points in less time than it took me to refill my plate. Again. (The part about the plate filling...)
Baltimore held that lead, fading though it was, until the final minute when the rules of modern football were suspended for one play, the one where the Ravens' Jimmy Smith had a hold of the 49ers Michael Crabtree on fourth down from the five or so. Smith had a better grip on Crabtree than Xbox has on the high school population but there was no flag.
At that point, the most satisfying part of the football night occurred; that being the image of Jim Harbaugh, my man, screaming at the officials about his receiver being held, the Super Bowl slipping through his fingers, the chance to once again be a pompous, winning jerk at the postgame podium evaporated. Granted, the man was right, but still...
So the Ravens are your world champion, Ray Lewis is the father of the year and pro football is over until next year. The big winner on the night, though, might well have been Dodge Trucks, which sponsored the most stark, moving commercial of the Super Bowl era. His third quarter speech about farmers and farming was especially poignant and well received here in corn country but this morning it is also receiving world wide acclaim as the greatest Super Bowl commercial of all time.
Man, I miss Paul Harvey. Good Day!