I went to North Park for a Super Bowl party. Getting there an hour before the game started scored me seats in front of the big screen. They had another TV set up in the garage, but when I went out there to grab a Coke, I saw that the picture wasn’t clear. The crowd of eight watching it didn’t seem to mind. I almost knocked over a woman’s drink by the refrigerator door and apologized. As I walked back to the living room, I wondered why she didn’t move it before someone else did the same thing.
The clock above the TV said 3:00, and I was glad that it was later than I thought. But, when I looked at my cell phone ten minutes later, it said 2:30. I looked back up at the clock, and it still said 3:00. I wondered why so many people complain about Christmas lights being left up months after December, yet nobody complains about people who have VCRs always flashing 12:00, those who ignore daylight savings, or who hang clocks that don’t work.
One guy debated with me when he found out I was rooting for the Giants. He said, “How could you, after what Eli did to the Chargers?” I said, “Yeah, I thought Eli saying he wouldn’t play for the Chargers was bush league. But he had a few points. And, I look at the Giants as the lesser of two evils. The Patriots were caught cheating. Their coach is a known jerk. They have a number of players I don’t care for. Really, unless you’re from New England, you should be rooting for the Giants.”
His response was, “Wouldn’t you like to see Junior Seau get a ring?” I thought about it, and said, “No. Not really. Everyone likes to say that. I would’ve loved for Tony Gwynn to win a World Series. I thought he was a class guy. And, I did play basketball with Seau a few times. He was nice enough. But, I don’t always like him celebrating after he makes a tackle. I didn’t like him saying he was retiring, then graduating, and all that other garbage. For him to latch on to a team that’s already won a few Super Bowls...what kind of accomplishment is that?”
Though my girlfriend and I had great seats in terms of the view, we soon realized that we were closest to the door. Every time someone knocked, we weren’t sure what to do. The first time, the people knocked and immediately came in. The second time people arrived and knocked, they didn’t come in. They knocked again and my girlfriend opened the door and said, “Hi. I don’t live here, but come on in.” The woman said, “Yeah, I know,” and walked right by her. My girlfriend said, “Okay, that’s the last time I’m opening the door for anyone.” I said, “Now you know how some of us guys feel when we hold the door open for women we don’t know and we aren’t acknowledged.”
One lady arrived and was introducing everyone to Pang Pang, a foreign exchange student from China. I thought about introducing myself to her as “Josh Josh.”
I overheard her talking to a guy named Mike. She was saying the kitchens here are a lot different than in China. She explained that in China the kitchens are closed off and separate from the rest of the house to protect the house from cooking steam and oil. As most people say about their homeland cooking, she added, “Every part of the dish is fresh and prepared from scratch.”
One thing she said that surprised me was that Chinese dishes have a very light flavor. She added, “If I meet a guy, he is going to have to know how to cook because I don’t know how.”
She told us that while she was in China, she had an exchange student from Sweden. Since he was so tall, in the food lines, they always piled food on his plate. She would get two small, cooked carrots, and he’d get a stack of them.
As the game neared halftime, Patriots owner Bob Kraft was shown on screen, and a woman asked, “Does he have to wear a tie?” Someone responded, “No, he owns the Patriots. If it was me, I’d choose not to wear one.” Someone else said, “I’d wear a zoot suit.”
Everyone got quiet when the commercials came on. As a political ad played, we wondered how many of these would cut into the funny commercials we were expecting.
I asked one guy who he thought the best team in football history was. “We might be watching them right now. They’re 18 and 0.” I said, “I’d take the ‘70s Steelers over them.” Someone else said, “What about the 49ers in the ‘90s?” I said, “Yeah. I think they’re better, too. The Pats are a close third.”
Someone mentioned a picture frame that had photos that kept changing. My girlfriend thought it was cool. I liked the concept, though I thought it should stay on each photo a bit longer. And we shouldn’t see the cord hanging from the picture frame — it looked like a laptop showing photos of their trip to New York.
Bill told us some interesting stories about that trip and how he tried to convince his wife to stand next to the naked cowboy, but she didn’t know who he was.
Someone asked if there was also a naked Indian. I said, “That could work. A full headdress and a dream catcher strategically placed.”
It’s fun at Super Bowl parties to hear guys explaining football to women who aren’t sure what’s going on. It was funnier to hear them explaining it to Pang Pang, who was really confused.
When a quarterback spiked the ball down to stop the clock, one guy said, “Why is it legal to do that, yet they’ll call intentional grounding if he throws the ball away before he gets sacked?” The same guy brought up another good point when Tom Petty played at halftime and sang “American Girl.”