Today is Super Bowl LI. Patriots vs. Falcons. LADY GAGA! What follows is a detailed position-by-position breakdown of both teams, a look at potential X-factors, plus an oral history of Deflategate. Wait, no it isn’t.
Back in 2012, I decided to move to Boston after six years living in Hoboken, N.J. Well, less decided to move there and more ended up moving there since I didn’t find myself a new place in the Hoboken/NYC area despite the fact that my roommate at the time had given me a year’s notice that he was planning to shack up with his now-wife. (I think that was around the time I watched the entirety of the TV show “Lost” — 121 episodes! — in a 3-month span on Netflix, which, looking back, might not have been a great period of time for me mental-health wise.)
Anyway, it was 2012 and I was living in the Allston area of Boston with my older brother Jim. Just a few blocks from my apartment was the Sil (aka the Silhouette Lounge), a bar I would
occasionally often frequent. One Sunday, I headed over after work to watch the second half of the Patriots game. I was by myself, so I took a seat, ordered a PBR tall-boy and settled in for an enjoyable late-afternoon of NFL football.
Sitting next to me was a 30-something dude in a Tom Brady jersey. Now, I am generally not one to strike up conversation with strangers, but during a sporting event at a bar, conversations with strangers are hard to avoid. At some point late in the third quarter, Brady threw for a TD, and the guy said something like, “Sick fucking pass!” then looked over at me; so I was obliged to kind of nod and halfheartedly agree: “Yep, fucking sick pass, man. NEVER COUNT OUT TOUCHDOWN TOM.” He, also sitting by himself, decided we were now friends and were going to have a nice chat.
So he tells me why Brady’s god and why Gronk’s the man and I tell him I’m from New York so he bitches about the Giants and how Eli’s not elite despite the fact that I inform him I’m a dreaded Cowboys/Yankees fan. I also realize he is super high
on life. Then he shuts up for a bit before saying, “I’m a hardcore fan. Once it’s half-time, I’m heading home so I can fully lock in on the end of the game.”
“What?” I replied.
“Can’t have any distractions for the second half,” he said.
I paused, to make sure I heard him correctly. Looked up at the TV, to make sure I wasn’t losing my mind. Then said:
“There is legit 45 seconds left in the fourth quarter.”
He stared at me for a few seconds, collected his things, exited the bar, and I never saw him again during my four years in Boston.