by Jim Harris
Are you ready for some football? I’m not. I find the Super Bowl slightly less interesting than a Monster Truck rally. And being a non-football fan on Super Bowl Sunday is like being Jewish on Christmas. Or even worse, like being a turkey on Thanksgiving. I’m afraid that if I don’t keep moving, I might get eaten. I’m surrounded by hype, hoopla, hubbub and hedonism. Meanwhile, all I want to do is hunker down and avoid the whole affair.
To that end, I’ve created my own alternative sporting event, and it doesn’t involve brain injuries, buckets of beer, wardrobe malfunctions or multi-million dollar dancing-monkey commercials. I call it the Superior Bowl. It’s basically a version of the wildly popular “fantasy football” craze, where contestants build their fantasy teams from the ranks of actual NFL players, and fantasy game results are based on the statistics of the real players.
The only difference in my version is that the fantasy players don’t have to be chosen from NFL teams. They just have to be famous individuals (living, dead, fictional or metaphysical) with well-documented histories or back-stories. Once the two teams are constructed, all of their information is then downloaded to the Brainiac 5000 computer, housed at the U.S. Department of Information Technology in Washington. The computer is available that day because all of the employees are out watching the Super Bowl.
Braniac then analyzes the data, creates the players’ avatars and generates a visual actualization of the entire game. All the rules of regular football apply, including penalties. For instance, if a linebacker were to hack off a receiver’s hands and wear them as trophies, that would be a 15-yard penalty for “Illegal use of hands.”
And now, ladies and gentlemen, (cue “Ride of the Valkyries” and fog machine), I’m proud to introduce my team, the 2012 Germantown Juggernauts!
•The coaching staff: defensive co-ordinator, Attila the Hun; head coach Ethel Merman. Coach Merman belts out instructions to her players from the sidelines in the form of Broadway tunes (“Throw, Gabriel, Throw;” “There’s no Business Like Toe Business;” “I Get A Kick Out of You”), and she never needs an intercom.
•The most offensive line: Starting at left tackle, from West Lothian, Scotland, the big-boned, golden-throated diva, Susan Boyle. She’ll make you cry; then she’ll knock you on your ass. The rest of the huge front line: The Elephant Man, Fat Albert, Marlon Brando, Orson Welles and Elvis Presley. The one thing they all have in common is that they all use the new Paula Deen diabetes drug, the first one in the world that’s deep-fried. Their motto is: “Think outside the buns!”
•The running backs: Harry Houdini (he can get buried under a pile of tacklers at midfield and suddenly reappear in the end zone) and Mother Theresa. Who’s going to tackle HER?
•Linebackers: Lizzie Borden (she carries an axe) and “The Father of Nihilism” himself, German philosopher Friedrich Neitzsche. He convinces receivers that catching the ball is pointless.
•The kickers: Francis the Talking Mule and John the Baptist. John’s the guy who christens the coach with a bucket of Gatorade, even when we lose.
•And, starting at quarterback: From the University of Berlin, 5’9”, 168 pounds of pure brain, Albert Einstein! This guy adds a whole new dimension to the game — literally. He thinks outside the pocket. He can make mind-boggling conceptual leaps. He can throw a pass tomorrow and catch it himself yesterday. Opposing players can never quite agree on where he is or how fast he’s moving, because IT’S ALL RELATIVE, BABY!
•Backup quarterback: Generic God. [Note: I picked “Generic” God because I wanted a quarterback with a wide range of powers but not a lot of complicated rules and regulations. He didn’t make first string because he is vulnerable to attacks from logic (“Hey, God, can you make a rock so heavy that you can’t lift it?”), and because he tends to lose his temper and smite whole ethnic groups in the blink of an eye for not following HIS rules. He also wastes too much time thanking himself profusely after every good play.
•The team physician is Dr. Jack Kevorkian [This tends to keep the number of reported injuries down.] The end zone dance choreographer is Richard Simmons.
And, at halftime, while the rest of America is watching 53-year-old Madonna attempting to bump and grind, my guests and I will be taking turns reciting our own original anti-Super Bowl haikus. Here are a couple I’ve been working on:
Millions are starving.
Let’s watch overpaid athletes
and eat chicken wings.
Super Bowl Sunday:
I placed a large bet and lost.
I’ll go beat my wife.
The Superior Bowl party will begin at my house at 1 p.m. If you’d like to bring a fantasy date to the party, that’s fine. I’ll be there with Lady Gaga and Newt Gingrich, the man who puts the hippo in hypocrite, and Elliot Spitzer, the man who always takes a Viagra tablet before going through an airport security patdown. We’ll also be serving fantasy food. (Gingrich squeezes his food to death and swallows it whole.) The only real thing will be the joy that you experience from not having to watch the overhyped snoozefest Super Bowl.