"More than one-third (36%) of Americans who live in the South agree that God plays a role in determining which team wins a sporting event, compared to nearly 3-in-10 (28%) Americans who live in the Midwest, 1-in-5 (20%) Americans who live in the Northeast, and 15% of Americans who live in the West. Republicans (25%) are, however, equally as likely as Democrats (28%) and independents (26%) to agree that God plays a role in determining which team wins a sporting event." —It's almost time for America's annual passion play. Let's hope God can take a break from killing Muslim kids in Syria to bless the most-deserving group of gigantic [...]
Rumors have circulated that Madonna, recording artist, will sing with M.I.A. at the Super Bowl. Nicki Minaj is also implicated. Both artists have had success, but can either bring back the monoculture? Leaving the fleeting sensation of a Lynn Hirschberg truffle-fry ambush aside, if M.I.A. were interviewed by Barbara Walters, who would care? Neither M.I.A., a self-consciously “edgy” singer of extraordinary gifts of curation, nor Nicki Minaj, a self-consciously outré rapper of extraordinary gifts full-stop, have cultivated personae beyond “hardworking,” “talented,” and (in M.I.A.’s case) “prone to ignorable political pronouncements.” It’ll be a good show, but no one should expect an iconic moment on par with Madonna heaving in a [...]
On Thursday morning, I went to the Paley Center for Media—which used to be the Museum of Television and Radio, and still kind of is, although it's now called the Paley Center for Media—and was brought down into a basement dubbing room, where I watched something that was long thought not to exist. It's a tape of the CBS broadcast of Super Bowl I, which was played in front of roughly 61,000 spectators and 30,000-plus empty seats at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, on January 15, 1967. Since then, the game has been famously unseen and unseeable, outside of some sideline footage shot by NFL Films.
Neither CBS nor [...]
"When you have that many people over, the garbage container seems to fill up to the point of over flowing every 10 minutes. Taking the garbage outside in the dead of winter requires me to get my coat, skully hat and boots because of all the snow we have been getting. There will be a minimum of seven trips to the garbage cans outside. A garbage run during a commercial time out in the 4th quarter turns into a longer than expected mission as the bottom of the bag breaks on the way to the can. I spend the next 15 minutes getting latex gloves and picking up all the [...]
It was totally great that New Orleans got to celebrate last night. Now, are you ready for your Monday come-down? The Super Bowl–or more specifically, the way we watch it–is connected to the possibility that Democrats won't pass health care reform this year. Or that the two Democratically-controlled chambers of Congress that have already passed some version of health care reform might not manage to send a unified bill to a Democratic president's desk for his signature. The lessons, as always in America, are to be found in a reading of what happened on the teevee.
America, In A Very Real Sense, Is Waiting All Day For A Sunday Night That Never Comes, Or, At Least, Comes Only For Those At The Top Of A Ladder They're Increasingly More Successful At Pulling Up Behind Them
When South Africa hosted the World Cup, the European Press was filled with denunciations of this choice, because surely “a developing nation” wouldn’t have the wherewithal to host an event of such status and magnitude. What does the thirty-four-minute blackout—caused by too much electricity—say about this country? Have we overdeveloped or are we actually undeveloping? Are we the player, so pumped up on steroids that we can barely squeeze out of their jerseys or are we the player so decimated by repeated blows to the head, we need help remembering the names of our family? We’re both: two Americas defined by structural inequality and the withering of the idea that [...]
AARRROOOO!!! Now, right now, is Super Bowl! This week! The most American week of all! Super Bowl has more America™ in it than Fourth of July, Election Day, the Academy Awards, NASCAR, and Tet all rolled up into one, and now is the time when America has Super Bowl all up in it!
Super Bowl is here for America, the Whole America! Super Bowl is here for you! Even if you don't want it! Especially if you don't want it! Super Bowl will football you until you love it! Super Bowl is here for the 47%, and the 98%, and the 99%, and it is brought to you by the [...]
Want to be a pretentious show-off with your friends this weekend when the big game is on? But you don't know the difference between the infield fly rule and a two-line pass (or even to what sports they apply)? Well, it's OK. Sports radio enthusiast and noted laundromat-lurker Jim Behrle, who graced us with his haiku picks this NFL season, has once again written down a cheat sheet of smart-sounding things you can spout during the Super Bowl! Remember, always take a pause in the middle of every sentence for maximum gravitas. Don't choke on a nacho while you opine!
"During their last meet-up in the [...]
From time to time, we offer free editorial space to common folk with something to say. Today, the subject of a documentary which appeared during last night's Super Bowl discusses his strange compulsion.
I hear the hatred. I am aware of the mockery and the fear. How could it be otherwise? I’ve known it all my life. People point at me on the street in equal parts pity and disgust. Mothers will cross dangerous intersections, children in tow, in hopes of avoiding me. My employment history is an entirely predictable picture of vicissitude; I am hired, I spend a couple of weeks on the job, and then HR finds [...]
Despair though you might at the idea of the Black Eyed Peas, do not forget that Super Bowl halftime shows used to be like this. [Shudders.]
"No, you shouldn't be checking your pulse every five minutes during the Super Bowl. You can enjoy it. Jumping up and down and high-fiving is probably good, because at least you're getting some physical activity. It's the bad behaviors – the eating nachos and pizza and drinking too much – that need to be avoided." —,Stanford cardiologist Dipanjan Banerjee offers some perspective in one of those annual Super Bowl scare stories. Anyway, be careful out there; the game is a stressful event which may very well destroy your big fat fucking heart. [Via]
I know that most of you will be watching "Project Runway" on your DVRs or rereading "Middlemarch" during Sundays' Superbowl. But in the interest of helping you fit in with any football-lovers you may encounter, well, we can help. Just make sure to drop a few of these golden ditties.
It's time for "America's National Holiday," which means watching your favorite animal vermin on video! There is an actual "rat bowl," but it's so disturbing—it features three oiled baby rats, all sliding around and being weird, plus it is really a bowl of old cooking oil in someone's filthy kitchen—that we cannot put it on a family publication such as The Awl. Plus, the "embed code" is turned off. So enjoy this "rat bowling" instead. Do you know the difference between a common rat and a pro football player? The rat has never been arrested for assault or torturing dogs! Also most rats are not homophobic, and none [...]
The epic conclusion to an entire season of poetic football picks.
New England -3 NY Giants 54
When Yahweh created the USA She put two towns four hours away And in the sports they'd always play Until everyone was sick of hearing about them.
Boston with its chowder, New York with its cocaine Had a belligerent rivalry to maintain. Boston had a strangler, New York, a son of Sam And all the other cities stopped giving a damn.
Four cold dark years ago They met in a southwest state that has no soul. And because the Patriots stopped taping practices They got defeated, the Giants kicked their [...]
Last week, Animal Planet announced the rosters for Puppy Bowl VIII, the annual canine celebration of unmotivated running in circles and dead serious butt-sniffery that represents the best and most successful bit of Super Bowl counter-programming on record. While the VIII'th iteration of the Puppy Bowl will stick to the format fans came to know through the first VII—smallish dogs with their tongues hanging out, tear-assing around a small field aimlessly and excitedly—Animal Planet also added some new elements this year, including a new human referee. This week saw the public announcement of another new twist: the addition of veteran NFL coaches to the mix. We were there [...]
Since the Super Bowl is invisible to me, I didn't see any of its fabled advertisements—including this ad for Groupon here, that has apparently enraged everyone everywhere, what with its fairly completely misplayed sarcasm and tonedeafness and offbase first world self-mockery. (On the upside: at least now "everyone" has heard of Groupon. I guess.) The rest of the crop are rounded up here; gosh I did not miss very much in consuming important brand-related information, did I!
Just because you don't follow football and will only be watching the big game Sunday for the commercials and waiting around for "Glee" to be on doesn't mean you can't sound smart in front of your judgmental (probably terrible) friends and family. As a public service, we've let noted liver-in-his-mother's basement Jim Behrle once again collect some semi-brilliant things for you to spout out between nacho bites that might just make you sound like you've seen an American Football game before. He's been locked in his man-cave listening to sports talk radio for the past six months: he has plenty of wisdom to spare.
Good news: The NFL has reportedly decided to book a relatively current musical act for its halftime show for the first time since the Super Bowl XXXVIII Nipple Flash! Bad news: That act is apparently the exactingly safe hip-pop collective the Black Eyed Peas. Mitigating factor: Maybe this means we won't see will.i.am during every other commercial break? [Via]