Week 4: Are You Ready for Some….?
It took a whole month, but now the first snag in this plan has come to the fore. See, it was summer when I chose to sally forth bravely into the Post-Cable Era, which means I forgot to consider a very important television event: football.
Ha. Clay Matthews is my favorite ever.
Yes, I know football is on network television, but you have to consider that last year, I had not only a DVR so I could skip the commercials, but also HD channels (an upgrade made for the World Cup in 2010). Now, I have to watch it in real time via a spotty network anntanae. I think we can all agree that is a bit of a downgrade.
Football Off the Wire
If you can’t get it at home, the solution is obvious: go out. Football is really better experienced in a group setting anyway, and here in Packland (that’s Wisconsin for the Midwest-illiterate), there’s not much people won’t do in order to see a football game, whether it’s change the channel on a bar TV or reschedule a school graduations. Seriously, that happened this past weekend.
You can do this one of two ways:
1) In a Bar.
Who doesn’t want to bask in the glow of 18 giant screens simultaneously? The festive atmosphere and the variety of food and drink are just an added bonus. Plus, at least in Wisconsin, you can chose from dozens of bars with atmospheres ranging from sporty to trendy and they’re all probably gonna have the game on somewhere.
Cons: High noise levels, expensive bar prices, lines for EVERYTHING (bathroom, bar, parking lot, etc), obnoxious drunks, rude employees, commercials, riots.
2) At a Friend’s House.
For the price of a six-pack, you can ingratiate yourself into a comfortable couch seat where you will have a more-or-less guarenteed view of the game. Odds are the crowd will be small and you will know everyone, plus you might be able to skip the commercials if you’re lucky.
Cons: Lack of availability (you have to have 1) a friend 2) with cable to have this be a valid option, limited space, monotonous food and drink selection, obnoxious drunks, riots.
(BTW, these guys are exactly the kind of friend you do NOT want to watch football with. It looks like they’re watching a really exciting House Hunters episode. Come on, guys–get ROWDY! It’s the one day a week were yelling and cheering loudly is not only okay, but ENCOURAGED!)
A possible third option is to go to a live game, but Lambeau Field is harder to get into than a coconut. And I can’t get into a coconut to save my life.
September 18th: Packers @Carolina Panthers
This week we chose option #2, and went to the house of a friend with a seriously giant HD TV, a million HD channels and DVR. I had to stomach 20 minutes of Dragon Ball Z so the DVR could build up a buffer, but it was worth it in order to skip the commercials.
In the beginning, the Packers looked a little bit off-kilter–Cobb’s fumble after the punt was especially embarrassing, and their amount of penalties overall was nothing to be proud of. However, 3 interceptions by Woodson in the second half and the classic/awesome Rodgers’ short pass-Nelson’s 80 yard touchdown run in the 4th was…well, both classic and awesome. Both teams put up and extremely intense fight throughout the game, and at the final 2 minute warning the Packers were up by 14, their largest lead of the day.
A few seconds later, the DVR playback froze. Apparently the game was running over and the DVR hadn’t kept recording the overflow.
Luckily, we had almost been caught up to real time so we frantically switched to live television. We missed a Panther touchdown but managed to see the Packers win by 7 anyway. No real harm done, but I will be making doubly sure the recording stop time is set properly from now on, I can tell you that much. Overall it was an exciting game, and exciting win, and it was made all the better by sharing it with friends.