My Life In Super Bowls
Or “Football Memories From A Guy Who Only Watches Football Once A Year.”
Super Bowl XIII: Steelers vs. Cowboys (1/21/79)
Taking place a mere eighteen days after my birth, Super Bowl XIII was the first NFL Championship game of the JG2 era. This match-up also provided my father, the great JG1, with his most epic gambling win of all-time. Pop put $10,000 (that’s TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS) on the heavily favored Steelers, who beat the Cowboys 35 to 31. The Old Man’s been a Steelers fan ever since. According to Greene lore, these Super Bowl winnings were used to pay off the hospital bills from my equally triumphant birth—I have a sneaking suspicion, though, that this lump sum was actually directed towards the replica of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang my father kept in our garage until the stock market crash of 1987.
Super Bowl XXI: Giants vs. Broncos (1/25/87)
I remember very little about the game or any kind of partying. What I do remember is the next day, when I put on the non-descript Giants jersey I had received for Christmas a month prior and demanded my younger female cousin take a polaroid of me flexing near the laundry room. After the polaroid was finished drying, I requested she caption the photo “Young Lawrence Taylor” in red magic marker (which she did). It’s true—I did have some gridiron aspirations as a child. Unfortunately, Jebus didn’t make me as rough and tumble as the other kids. This lily would have positively wilted in the backfield.
Super Bowl XXIII: 49ers vs. Bengals (1/22/89)
Television was going through a small 3-D craze around this time. Thus, Super Bowl XXIII’s halftime show—some kind of 1950s rock n’ roll Elvis extravaganza—was presented partially in 3-D. It wasn’t nearly as good as Channel 11’s 3-D presentation of Hondo starring John Wayne; those injun arrows were comin’ right at me! If I remember the basic plot of this halftime show correctly, it began with a number of hot pink UFOs landing on the field at Joe Robbie Stadium a la The Day The Earth Stood Still. Mankind was frightened until the aliens revealed themselves to be interstellar Elvis impersonators! Awesome! For some reason, I also remember ZZ Top somehow being involved, but I could just be making that up (because I’m a die-hard ZZ Top fan and think they should be involved in EVERYTHING). My parents had a pretty big Bowl Bash this year. The action even spilled over to my mother’s “pink” room, a.k.a. the living room where I wasn’t usually allowed to hang out. I think my father bought a TV specifically for this Super Bowl party and put it in that room. Again, I could be mis-remembering things. Maybe the Super Bowl didn’t even happen that year.
Super Bowl XXV: Giants vs. Bills (1/27/91)
Went to some serious footballers’ party with my parents. Most distinct memory: the elderly Buffalo fanatic in attendance who had the Bills’ emblem painted on her saggy, weathered cheeks. In retrospect, it was a really accurate rendering. This was the year Whitney Houston blew the doors off the National Anthem. America really flipped a biscuit over that one. Too bad the Kuwait invasion only lasted like two days. There was some other kid at this party named Jimmy who at one point said something about Anthrax (the band), and I remember thinking, “No one our age actually likes Anthrax.” I was twelve at the time.
Super Bowl XXIX: 49ers vs. Chargers (1/29/95)
The first Super Bowl of the post-Cobain era. One of those rare moments when I noticed life goes on after insurmountable tragedy. No amount of grunge-related suicides was going to stop Steve Young from dominating this Miami-based game. The ’95 halftime show was that Indiana Jones stunt show, entitled Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye. A huge fight erupted between myself and my father when I announced I would be spending the half in my room watching “Beavis and Butt-head.” JG1 was, for some reason, livid (did he secretly invest in this Indiana Jones thing?) As soon as Indy was finished battled Dan Marino (or whatever the hell they did), my father poked his head in my room with an amazed look on his face. Quoteth Pops: “EVERYONE’S going to be talking about that tomorrow.” I felt bad for exactly one second. The next day at school, I only heard one person mention the Indiana Jones Football Stunt Spectacular. They didn’t seem all that enthused about it.
Super Bowl XXXVIII: Patriots vs. Panthers (2/1/04)
For years, I sat around wondering just how hot Janet Jackson’s boobs looked when they weren’t being oppressed by clothing. Surely even the briefest glance at Miss Jackson’s imaginably gorgeous chestal region would send me into severe cardiac arrest for the rest of my life. Imagine my disappointment when I finally did get to see one of JJ’s milkers and it looked like a pile of melting frozen yogurt with some weird lawn ornament in the middle. Talk about the wrong time to pop out a hooter. I blame that Thai sex slave outfit she was wearing. I was watching the game alone with my girlfriend at the time, and she turned away from the TV just as Janet’s titty came out. Thus, she did not believe me when I exclaimed, “Holy shit; Janet Jackson just flashed the Super Bowl!”
Super Bowl XLII: Giants vs. Patriots (2/3/08 )
This was the year I mercilessly mocked the entire game with an equally snarky friend of mine at a packed Super Bowl party, because I’m a complete dick like that sometimes. Most people were laughing along with us, but I know a few folks wanted to kick our asses. At one point, I got into an argument about the forthcoming Iron Man movie. I believe I made the statement that no one in America gives a shit about Iron Man. Seventeen jillion people proved me wrong five or six months later when that bastard opened. See, that’s why I’m not a major Hollywood player. I don’t know people’s tastes. Anyway, when the Giants won this game, there was an audible roar in the city, like…well…like the Giants won the Super Bowl. One of my roommates at the time came home the next morning with a celebratory black eye.