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skot AT izzlepfaff DOT com

Tuesday, 28 December

After having been informed by numerous people (including personal friends) that everyone's pretty fucking sick of hearing about my vacation, we'll just go ahead and move on. And frankly, there's something else that caught my eye over the weekend: a new comedy that I'm really excited about. Sunday night brought me the funniest show I've ever seen in my life, and I'm praying that it gets picked up for future episodes.

I am talking, of course, about Sunday Night Football, which is nothing new, but Sunday's matchup was really special: the Cleveland Browns (3-11) vs. the Miami Dolphins (3-11). I simply must demand that the NFL make this matchup an annual thing, particularly if each team continues its current level of utter wretchedness, because I haven't laughed that loudly in a long time. But humor is only good for so much; the best humor is also imbued with a sense of wonder, or something, and as I watched this incredible game (final score: 7-10!), I was indeed filled with wonder. How on this fucking earth, I wondered, did either of these teams win three games? One is hard pressed to find a worse team than either of these, unless you look to San Francisco, and really, let's not.

Where to start? Well, maybe the quarterbacks, who in this instance I hope are named for the amount of money they earned for their efforts. Luke McCown? AJ Feeley? These are not the names of quarterbacks. They are the names of residents of West Egg. Then again, the hottest quarterback in football is named Peyton, so what do I know? In the future, look for more QBs with names like Drake or Rex or Chester, I guess. They can throw to receivers with names like Ebenezer Ekuban, who, startled by the sudden appearance of mysterious football-shaped objects, will drop those passes. Yay!

The whole thing was simply baffling. After each team scored a touchdown in the first quarter, threatening the fans with an actual game, there ensued . . . nothing. No scores at all for an astonishing 3 1/2 quarters. Only Olindo Mare's admittedly nice 51-yeard field goal prevented this debacle from continuing into overtime, but there were, as I say, laughs aplenty nonetheless. Highlights include:

--Six turnovers. If memory serves, none of them were converted into, oh, I don't know . . . points?

--A field goal attempt! It's very exciting! Cleveland kicker Phil Dawson lines up for the easy score! He kicks! It's hooking! It's hooking! It's . . . clanging miserably off the upright and falling to the unhappy turf! CLONGGG! The sound of that poor ball seemed to summarize every aspect of the game. Naturally, ESPN played it over and over, while the booth rats dissolved into laughter. "We've got the giggles!" squealed Mike Patrick. "And there's still a quarter to go!" Even Paul Maguire was incapacitated by laughter, and for a moment actually had to leave off twisting legendary dimwit Joe Theismann's dick with his Vise-Grips.

--But best of all was what can only be described as a Series of Unfortunate Events when Luke McCown launched yet another unfortunate pass to nobody in particular (not that the receivers appeared interested in receiving anything, unless it was a paycheck), which was naturally picked off by Arturo Freeman. Freeman began to run, and was soon swarmed by lunky Browns.

Now look: it's a tie game. You just intercepted. Good for you! It's okay to be tackled; you're a hero. Fall the fuck down and let your (admittedly awful) offense take over and do their job. No? Or you could lateral.

Lateral to Patrick Surtain. The lunky Browns then go after Surtain. Patrick is actually not a horrible player and knows what to do, right? Well, no. Surtain behaves as if someone has tossed him a recently severed head. Holy fuck! Who tossed me this awful thing?

Surtain laterals to Sam Madison. Madison immediately fumbles, also believing that his teammate has thrown him something ghastly. Jesus Christ! thinks Madison, Patrick threw me a big ball of phlegm! Madison swiftly drops the ball of phlegm at his feet, and is then leveled by several dozen Browns, all of whom have by now had ample time to get to where the ball is. And the Browns recover, for what amounts to a 28 yard gain.

That was the best Browns gain of the entire quarter. "Merry Christmas," I whispered. "Do that again."*

*I cheerfully stole this line from Pat Maguire.

Note: Comments are closed on old entries.



I was waiting anxiously for the story of your wacky hijinks and misadventures upon returning, hotel-less, to London. And you give me football? FOOTBALL?!

You've got a junk-cupping coming, young man.

Comment number: 004843   Posted by: TheBrad on December 28, 2004 12:25 AM from IP:

Damn it, I want more vacation stories! People who are bored, well, line up and I'll give you your money back.

Comment number: 004844   Posted by: CG on December 28, 2004 12:33 AM from IP:

please, please, more vacation stories. no more football. yuck.

Comment number: 004845   Posted by: another reader on December 28, 2004 01:11 AM from IP:

You made football funny. I may have to put down my knitting and watch now. My husband may no longer know who I am. The world may end.

Post whatever you like - I'll read it.

Comment number: 004846   Posted by: Szarka on December 28, 2004 06:27 AM from IP:

Skot, you're not trying hard enough. Writing about your vacation or about such weird and marginalized pursuits as watching football is not alienating your entire audience. You need to write about going to Bath to watch a football game, or possibly about My Life as a House.

Comment number: 004847   Posted by: Steve on December 28, 2004 09:04 AM from IP:

What about stories about watching football while on vacation or going to a fantasy football camp, you turd?

Comment number: 004848   Posted by: 6y on December 28, 2004 09:06 AM from IP:

The London update.
I await with bated breath.

Comment number: 004849   Posted by: Vile File on December 28, 2004 10:41 AM from IP:

The London update.
I await with bated breath.

Comment number: 004850   Posted by: Vile File on December 28, 2004 10:43 AM from IP:

football is dumb.
england is funny.
more england please.

Comment number: 004851   Posted by: dolface on December 28, 2004 03:01 PM from IP:

Yeah, yeah. The Browns suck. But at least they've got macho colors like Brown & Orange. Not the silver, green and blud your sissy Seattle team wears. Ya pansy.

Comment number: 004852   Posted by: Joe on December 28, 2004 03:03 PM from IP:

Yeah, yeah. The Browns suck. But at least they've got macho colors like Brown & Orange. Not the silver, green and blue your sissy Seattle team wears. Ya pansy.

Comment number: 004853   Posted by: Joe on December 28, 2004 03:03 PM from IP:

I liked the football piece, but I liked the travel pieces too.

Comment number: 004854   Posted by: alkali on December 28, 2004 04:03 PM from IP:

Reading from Australia, the London thing makes evil sense. Same happens to us, although we have been genetically altered to understand pubs instinctively.

But this gridiron thang you can football? Sheesh. Why doesn't something happen all the time? Wouldn't it be better if everyone played naked?

Comment number: 004863   Posted by: David Tiley on December 29, 2004 09:16 PM from IP:

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