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Well, we may not have had the distinct pleasure of sending Brady and Belichick home empty-handed two years in a row, but at the time of writing, I’m very much looking forward to watching the Rams give it their best shot. By the time you read this newsletter, the big game will be over, and the confetti — regardless of color — will have been swept off Mercedes-Benz Stadium. While I may not have a crystal ball to predict the play- by-play, I do know who I’ll be watching this Super Bowl with. My daughter Kelly is just as big a football fan as I am, maybe even bigger. Every Sunday, I get a call from her asking, “Dad, are you going to be home to watch the game?” Being a self- professed workaholic, I appreciate that my daughter reaches out to me like this. She makes sure that I take the time to sit back, relax, and watch a game. MORE THAN A GAME WHAT FOOTBALL MEANS TO ME
and it has led to many memorable moments, not the least of which was last year’s Super Bowl.
Kelly’s now going on 28 and has channeled her love of dogs into a full-time dogsitting career. In fact, she was dogsitting a good boy named Max during last year’s game and invited me over to watch. Needless to say, we made a lot of noise for just two people. We were living and dying with every play — when Foles caught that touchdown pass, you could probably hear us from a block away. That is, if you could distinguish our voices from the cheer that went up across the city. It’s moments like this that remind me exactly why football matters so much to so many. In many ways, it’s more than just a sport. Being able to put the troubles of the world aside for an afternoon and concern yourself with field goals and interceptions is invaluable. While these moments can get us fired up in the moment, at the end of the day, there’s always next season. For me personally, it’s a way to connect with my family members. From those long phone calls with my mother to shouting and cheering at the screen with my daughter, I’ve gotten more than my fair share of great memories watching this great American game.
“No matter where I was in the world, I could count on my mother calling me whenever the Eagles were playing.”
Well, relax may not be the right word. Kelly and I aren’t above “armchair quarterbacking” and telling the TV screen exactly what we think of a ref’s eyesight. Put another way, we get passionate, especially when the Eagles are playing. All told, Kelly’s enthusiasm for the sport reminds me a lot of her grandmother. No matter where I was in the world, I could count on my mother calling me whenever the Eagles were playing. This wasn’t a quick call either. In the days before FaceTime and livestreams, we’d both be on our respective landlines, watching the TV and talking to one another about every play as it happened. I dearly miss those days, but I’m proud to say I’ve passed on my mother’s love of football to my daughter. Ever since she was 16, we’ve been watching Eagles games together,
Fly, Eagles, fly,
–Paul H. Young
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