Yes, campers, it's true: I'm a huge NFL fan, and have followed it since I was about ten years old. And to make things even worse, my fave team is none other than the current dynasty, the so-good-they're-scary New England Patriots. Hey man, I've followed them since 1973, through the Steve Grogan years (remember Steve? Great guy), the '80s with their brief flare of Ray Berry / Tony Eason glory (quickly extinguished by the, ahem, Chicago Bears), into the nadir of 1989-1993 during which time, I believe, they won fewer games during a 5-year span than any team in NFL history (don't quote me on that, I'm not sure, but it was really bad; like 20 wins to 60 losses or thereabouts), through the teasing Drew Bledsoe / Bill Parcells era culminating in another hosing by another great NFC team (this time Brett Favre's Packers), through the next nadir of the late '90s, till suddenly--huh? What?--they began winning more games than they lost. Believe me it was weird. And something else, it's still weird. So every time I watch a game or look for a score on the internet or whatever, I have thirty-odd years of shattered expectations waiting to hear something horrible. And then, more often than not, they win. This little nugget of surprise opens up in me and lingers there. And that's why I love the Pats.
Plus, I used to love Belichick, though that's been tempered by these cheating-by-videotape allegations / convictions.
Today (it's already Sunday as I write this in Pakistan, though it's Saturday night in the US, confusing but true) the Pats take on the Browns and should win, bringing them to 5-0. Next week it's the Cowboys, who look good this year. If they can beat them, I think the Pats will do very well this year. People are talking about an undefeated season but I predict 14-2, which is still pretty darn good. I expect them to lose to either the Cowboys or the Colts, later in the year; and I think they will drop one game unexpectedly, to someone like the Ravens.
And you thought, what, this was a blog about books or something?