Normally we don’t pay much attention to sports here, because we feel far too much attention is paid to them elsewhere. It’s not that we don’t like sports; we do, but the amount of ink wasted on predicting, analyzing, and post-mortems is prodigious enough without our adding to it.
Still, this particular Super Bowl seemed to offer some unusual opportunities for the Cannibal to comment on, so we will:
1. The game itself was one of the more interesting in the championship’s long history, with the outcome decided in the final minutes. This did not appear likely after the first drive of the second half, when it seemed that Brady was about to slice and dice the Giants into a kind of salad, but then Pat receivers suddenly started treating the football like a barrel cactus, leading to one of the game’s more interesting aftershocks.
2. Giselle Bundchen, Brady’s Brazillionaire wife, responded to taunts from delirious Giants fans by saying something to the effect that her husband can’t both throw and catch the ball. While her comment may have been injudicious, it was hardly inaccurate, but somehow the Bradys and the Welkers seem unlikely to be double-dating anytime soon (not that they ever did).
2a. Also noteworthy on the celebrity side was the bizarre renaissance of Madonna at halftime. We felt older than we should, but were entertained to see one of her supporting cast flipping off the audience, for what offense we cannot imagine. Was someone disrespecting the entertainment by texting during the performance? Gauche.
3. The fact that the Patriots were in the Super Bowl surprised no one, but at one point during the season Vegas oddsmakers were offering 80-1 against the Giant victory, perhaps because the Giants at the time were looking like Harvard could beat them. (In a way, Harvard did beat the Patriots, when they lost to Buffalo early in the season, with the Bills fielding Ryan Fitzpatrick, a former Crimson signal caller at quarterback. ) Those bets must have been very painful to pay off.
4. The Giant’s victory ought to mercifully put an end to the ubiquitous discussion in the press as to whether Eli Manning is an “elite quarterback,” whatever the hell that is. He’s now won two Super Bowls, engineered an astonishing number of improbable last-quarter comebacks, and, in spite of having the tar beaten out of him by every defense in the NFL, seems none the worse for wear.
5. Some twit or another wrote a story today about how “the Old Belichick” was back, and that the “new Belichick” didn’t last very long. The new Belichick is a happy-go-lucky, relaxed and almost garrulous version of Belichickness — in fact, he is the “real” Belichick, according to those close to him, as opposed to the terse, irritated and sometimes scornful persona that usually greets the sporting press. It is rumored that Belichick does not hold the sporting press in high regard. How this can be, we cannot inform you — but we are amused that this particular reporter was surprised to find a man who had just lost to the Giants for the second time wasn’t very chirpy at the post-game presser. He was, however, gracious in his comments about the Giants, which is typical, and perfectly candid in his assessment of the game’s outcome. Did this inkster expect him to don a Harpo wig and toss Whoopee cushions to the audience?
6. Finally, congratulations to the city of Indianapolis for doing a wonderful job of hosting this year’s game. We are advised by a friend that there was one unexpected aspect to this privilege — the town was somewhat abruptly aware that it had attracted thousands of hookers to its streets. In New York, Los Angeles, Miami or even (perhaps particularly) Detroit the sudden appearance of professional escorts at division strengths may go unnoticed, but Indy is a different story, we guess. Still, even this development is not without its civic upside, as sales of everything from fast food to lip gloss most likely benefited to an impressive degree.
Next year, the game comes to back to New Orleans. Plenty of hookers there already, but always room for a few thousand more. And Giselle — keep it up. The world loves a woman who stands by her man, unless she’s named Callista. And if any of the Patriots receivers try to give you any guff, remind them that you make more money than they do.