What is the Super Bowl?

Jan 262003
Authors: Reed Saunders

EDITOR”S NOTE: Check out Reed’s online diary from his entire weekend in San Diego for the Super Bowl in the Sports section.

SAN DIEGO – Welcome back, my friends, to the show that never ends.

Not sure who sang that, but it really covers it quite well.

This show – this circus that is the Super Bowl – doesn’t seem to want to end. It is a circus, the ultimate circus of media, fans and hype.

No event compares to the Super Bowl and maybe that’s why this column is so hard to write. What honestly can be said about the Super Bowl that hasn’t already been said? Has there been an original thought about the Super Bowl in the past 10 years?

I could talk about the week-long party, the feeling that THIS is the event of the year, the never-ending, never-sleeping whirlwind of a time this is.

It’s so easy to forget that there is a GAME to be played this weekend. It’s almost like a holiday where nothing really happens. Like people getting together to celebrate Mardi Gras in New Orleans (which is pretty similar to how things looked last night in the

Gas Lamp district) – there really wouldn’t have to be anything going on for this to occur… just say “Super Bowl” and people want to get together and party.

Somewhere between the private parties, the free booze and about 2,000 “I Need Tickets” signs, I started to wonder: If the Daytona 500 is the Super Bowl of NASCAR and the Kentucky Derby is the Super Bowl of horse racing, what is the Super Bowl?

It’s the craziest week you’ve ever seen. It’s ducats, credentials and passes to parties, gatherings, affairs.

It’s having to pass 23 “I Need Tickets” signs on your way from your bed to the john.

It’s being alone in a sea of 100,000 people on the streets of downtown.

It’s Raiders’ fans who need a life. It’s Raiders’ fans whose team IS their life.

It’s getting up in the middle of a column to iron your shirt so you’ll look good for the Super Bowl and maybe, just maybe, a couple C-list celebrities like Kevin Sorbo.

It’s seeing Styx (Styx!) jam out at an NFL party and saying things like “You’re in Styx world tonight, baby!”

It’s not leaving your ticket in your hotel room because maids are being paid mucho dinero to steal it and give it to a large, large man who will use it to get money for new 30-inch rims and DVD players for his Denali.

It’s not cheering for the Raiders if you paid me, but also being too terrified to cheer against them for fear they might have my pinkie cut off.

It’s being the first member of your family to attend a Super Bowl and telling people things like, “Shouldn’t there be a scholarship made for that?”

It’s watching those Don Cheadle commercials that walk the line a little too well between cool and laughable.

That’s how big the Super Bowl is: They took Brussel sprouts, and made them…. Brussel sprouts.

It’s getting your picture taken with the Coors Light twins and how that fact alone would make it a successful weekend if you had to leave now.

It’s feeling paranoid and checking the clock every minute to make sure you don’t miss your 11 a.m. bus to the game… at 6:45 a.m.!

It’s every cool concert, game, kiss, rush, buzz or high you’ve ever had, rolled into a gigantic burrito of excitement and flair (and guacamole…mmm).

Plain and simple, it’s like nothing else in the world.

The Super Bowl. Who needs original thoughts when you can just say that?

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