In James Brooks’ fabulous 1987 film, “Broadcast News,” William Hurt’s character asks, “What do you do when your real life exceeds your dreams?” To which Albert Brooks’ character responds, “Keep it to yourself.”
I might be the happiest man in America since George Washington discovered his dental plan covered wooden teeth. The Team of Destiny – my Team of Destiny – has a date with destiny on Feb. 1.
Usually at this time, I provide my annual Super Bowl Sunday Viewing Guide (for Super Bowl Parties of Six or More). This year, I must alter course a bit and mostly celebrate America’s, uh, Arizona’s Team:
Perhaps some of you don’t recall what I wrote just prior to the 2008 season. “The Cardinals were the best 8-8 team in the NFL last season. I am confident they can become the worst 10-6 team in the NFL this season. Then they will begin their improbable playoff run … and, poof, they’re Super Bowl-bound and Couch Slouch is again your Prognosticator of Destiny.” Wow. I feel like Nostradamus, with ex-wives.
Should the 9-7 Cardinals even be here? When the postseason began, some people called Arizona the worst playoff team ever. So let me just repeat what I said at the time on ESPN Radio’s Colin Cowherd show (during an unexpected moment in which he actually let me talk): “To ensure the two best teams make it to the Super Bowl, the NFL should adopt a BCS-style system.”
My goodness, I’m so self-absorbed these days, it seems that all I do is quote myself. That reminds me of my first spoken words, on the day of my birth – I was pulled out of the womb, looked around the room and said, “So?”
I first saw Kurt Warner in 1999 and correctly identified him as a dome-dwelling, touchdown-tossing alien UFO. This is how much I believe in Kurt Warner: You want to fix the economy? Make Warner Secretary of the Treasury. You want a chance at world peace? Make Warner Secretary of State. You want to walk on water? Make Warner cross the Mississippi after hopping on his back.
If there were any receiver I possibly could like as much as Hines Ward, it would be Larry Fitzgerald. Have you ever noticed what Fitzgerald does after he scores a touchdown? He tosses the ball to the official. He’s a pro’s pro, a throwback’s throwback, a renaissance man’s renaissance man. If Chad Johnson is Ocho Cinco, Larry Fitzgerald is La Dolce Vita.
Destiny has many children, and I am the father of all of them. My Team of Destiny, the Arizona Cardinals, has reached the Super Bowl. My Wife of Destiny, Toni, has had a Super Bowl-caliber conjugal year. My Bowler of Destiny, Rhino Page, just finished second in the Tournament of Champions Sunday (though he broke my heart in the 10th frame). And my Beer of Destiny, Pabst Blue Ribbon, currently is plastered all over the big screen in “Gran Torino.”
Speaking of which, here are some important beer notes for you. 1. Coors Light is the official beer sponsor of Super Bowl 43. Pabst Blue Ribbon is the official beer sponsor of Couch Slouch watching Super Bowl 43. 2. Miller Lite: “Great Taste … Less Filling.” PBR: “Better Taste … More Filling.” 3. You say, “Budweiser Select.” I say, “Select PBR.”
As I alluded to earlier, Clint Eastwood says, “PBR me ASAP!” Why wouldn’t you? Have you seen “Gran Torino”? Eastwood, as Walt Kowalski, hates just about everything, but he loves his ’72 Gran Torino, his dog Daisy and his Pabst. The man derives a lot of joy from drinking PBRs on his front porch; heck, I’m going to go out and buy a front porch tomorrow.
Oh, yeah, the game itself – you probably want to know what’s going to happen. Steelers-Cardinals. It is my all-time favorite sports franchise against my Team of Destiny, my childhood heroes against my guilty adult pleasure. The Steelers had a better season, the Cardinals have a better destiny. Last year, in this very column, I predicted the Giants to beat the Patriots by one point – they won by three. This time, I will provide the EXACT FINAL SCORE of the game: Cardinals 29, Steelers 27. I’m pretty accurate this time of year, with bowlers, babes, beers and bets.
Ask The Slouch
Q. Russian figure skater Ekaterina Rubleva accidentally exposed a breast while competing at the European championships. Ever happen to you? (Jon Silverman; Seattle)
A. Accidentally exposed a breast? Wasn’t that one of the root causes of the Whiskey Rebellion?
Q. Is the fact the Cardinals are going to the Super Bowl the reason it has been inordinately cold here? (Tom Felton; Hell, W.Va.)
A. If you start believing, you will warm up, my friend.
Q. How come a perfect passer rating is 158.3? (Dale Murray; Troy, N.Y.)
A. Because 158.4 is unobtainable.
Q. Is the bulb in Craig Sager’s closet burnt out or is he just trying to appeal to the over-70 set in Florida by wearing Frank Costanza’s wardrobe? (Thomas A. Czerski; Pittsburgh)
A. Pay the man, Shirley.