Beata Cook| Wicked Local
Hi Folks. Once I get an idea for the week's topic, sometimes the words start to flow effortlessly until I realize I'm running out of space. At other times, I have to push myself to get the column ready to hand over to Avis for typing, proofreading, and small edits before it's sent to the editor of the Banner. That's where I find myself today, Monday, Feb. 8.
First of all, yesterday (the day of the Super Bowl, of all days) got all screwed up, which set me up for a very poor night's sleep, and as a consequence I could easily take a nap right now. But time grows short so I shall force myself to continue to follow my trend of thought wherever it might lead and hope my readers aren't overcome by my lethargy.
Back to the annual Super Bowl played by the champion teams of the NFL football season, which was won for many years by our New England Patriots, led by our quarterback, Tom Brady. Tom, at age 43, is considered kind of long in the tooth for a professional football player, but for some unknown reason he opted to go on playing but with a different team. Happily for me, he picked a team with which I feel a sort of connection, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. You see, my younger brother Paul (who died about 16 years ago and to whom I was very devoted) had moved many years ago from Boston with his partner, Ron, to St. Petersburg, Florida. Soon after the move they became fans of the Buccaneers, but Paul's team of choice always remained the Patriots. I still have a stadium blanket which the boys sent me years ago, with the name Buccaneers printed on its pretty orange quilting. I treasure it to this day. My sister Marian, our Aunt Ruth and I spent our yearly winter vacations with Paul and Ron in St. Pete, and therein lies my connection. If Brady felt it necessary to move to another locale with a different team, what better choice than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers?
So it was that I and my nieces Sue and Cindy planned a Super Bowl celebration of our own on game day. Cindy, who works at Stop & Shop, ordered freshly fried chicken wings to be picked up at the designated hour. Our neighbor, Mark Bove, contributed homemade pizza. Our plans were to do our weekly grocery shopping, put the stuff away, pick up the chicken wings and sit down to enjoy the game. Alas, that was not to be!
Was it Robert Burns who said, The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry ?
Disappointment #1: When Cindy arrived, she announced that the machine which fries the Stop & Shop chicken wings had burned out and would need repairs. As an alternative, we decided on frozen chicken wings accompanied by potato skins such as we once devoured at the now- defunct Pucci's. After we got the groceries sorted and put where they belong, we were really looking forward to sitting down with a drink and a piece of Mark's pizza as we watched the opening ceremonies of the Super Bowl.
Then came Disappointment #2. It was just about this time that I lost my picture on my Direct TV hookup. Since this has happened in the past during bad weather, I wasn't overly concerned.
Usually when it goes down, the screen delivers a message stating that the satellite dish is not relaying a signal but that they are searching and the connection would be restored shortly. But that's not what happened this time!
Susie got in touch with Direct TV customer service, and though she is much more experienced with technology than I am, after a series of unplug this, plug in that she was still unable to get a picture. Frustrated, Cindy and I had a piece of Mark's pizza but Susie did not. She said she didn't feel well and wasn't hungry. Because Cindy had an early work schedule the next day, Susie put the frozen wings and potato skins in the oven for Cindy to take home for her supper and then continued the hopeless task of getting a picture on the TV. She got so involved she forgot about the food in the oven, and when I reminded her, it was too late. The food was dry and tasteless, but before Cindy left for home she gamely ate hers anyway and said that it wasn't too bad.
What she deemed not too bad was Disappointment #3 for me, as far as I was concerned.
With the game well underway, Susie finally located a radio station on which she could follow the action and scores. Because football is such a visual game and my hearing is so impaired, there really isn't much pleasure in a radio broadcast. But when we turned it on the Buccaneers were in the lead after a couple of touchdowns by Rob Gronkowski, also a former Patriots player.
Finally, even better news arrived when Susie noticed that a light usually showing on the converter box wasn't shining. With that she started fooling around with plugs and outlets once again when, lo and behold, the screen suddenly came to life, informing us that they had almost located the signal on my disc and we should be connected in a few minutes. It was now halftime and I was hungry and tired, but we were able to see the last half of the game as well as the celebration when the Buccaneers handily won the Super Bowl! Brady will get his seventh ring.
It was then that my thoughts turned to my deceased loved ones, Paul, Marian, and friend Ron who have all gone on to another place, but I was able to join them in spirit as I shouted,
We won another Super Bowl. Not only did Tom Brady win one for the Buccaneers, but I finished my column with no space to spare!
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