Monday, February 1, 2010

No School After the Super Bowl? Been There. Done That.

Some schools in New Orleans are going to close on the Monday after the Super Bowl. That got me thinking...

What do you think of when the Super Bowl comes around each year? Expensive commercials? The Vince Lombardi Trophy? Half-time shows? Wardrobe malfunctions? For me it will always be: no school on Monday.

On the evening of Super Bowl XXV I was a bright-eyed, happy 9 year-old girl sitting on my grandparents’ couch in Buffalo, NY. OK, I lied. I’ve never been bright-eyed, but you get the idea. I was young. I was naive. I really thought that kick would be good. By the end of the night I was hiding in the bathroom pretending I wasn’t crying. I had become a Bills fan.

I had been coming to Buffalo to visit my mother’s side of the family my entire life. I had watched my share of football games on TV. Sometimes the announcers wouldn’t be to my grandfather’s liking, so he would turn the sound down and turn the radio up. If the Bills’ opponent was the Miami Dolphins the Buffalo News would have “Squish the Fish” signs in the Sunday paper.

After the missed field goal that lead to the loss on January 27, 1991, the Bills returned to the Super Bowl year, after year, after year. No other team in NFL history has gone to four consecutive Super Bowls. Every year was the same. We would be excited. We would gather around the TV with a stuffed brown buffalo. We would have food and lots of it. (Yes, of course we had Buffalo wings!) We would watch the game, the half-time show, the commercials. And then the game would be over. The Bills lost again. We knew the game wouldn’t get done until late, so we would have planned to stay over night. I didn’t go to school on Monday. I would tell my classmates on Tuesday that I had been in morning. They were a little jealous of the day off. All I knew was that a day off from school is good. A day off from school after a Bills’ victory would have been better.

I hope the kids in New Orleans can enjoy their day off from school.

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