The Pro Bowl-Revisited

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Greetings from The Booth!

Well, we are on the eve of the most exciting weekend in pro football, a weekend where friends and family gather in homes and watering holes around the USA. A weekend where tons of wings and pizza are consumed, and gallons of suds are imbibed. A weekend that has become a de facto national holiday. Yes, it is…Pro Bowl weekend!

I jest, of course. The Pro Bowl is the NFL’s all-star game, and in the words of the late NFL great, Sonny Randle, “a pillow fight.” It was definitely that when it was an actual football game (defense optional), but even more so now that Pro Bowl weekend features skills competitions and a series of 7-on-7 flag football games. I’ll probably be catching up on some much needed sleep or watching The Paint Drying Network or The Traffic Light Channel, both of which have been added to my cable provider–just in time.

I took an informal poll on my morning show today, and the question was simply, “Pro Bowl or Bridges Of Madison County.” The latter holds a special place in my heart. I watched it in sunburned agony in the old movie theatre in Chincoteague, Va., on a vacation getaway with my wife one Summer. Sunburn aside, as a red blooded male, it was certainly agonizing to see Clint Eastwood’s character standing in the rain crying like a baby.  I kept waiting for him to say “Come on punk, open up the white zinfandel.” Sadly, that line never came. Anyway, I tried to come up with the ultimate chick flick that even the most casual football fan might decline for the Pro Bowl, and here are the results of the poll: “Bridges” edged out the Pro Bowl. So, there’s that.

I have an idea for reviving at least the concept of a Pro Bowl, which used to be a nice getaway to Hawaii for players and their families when NFL salaries were much lower. Today’s Pro-Bowlers could actually go to Hawaii every week of the year, so that perk has become irrelevant. Remember the old 70’s ABC show “Superstars?” That show featured athletes and celebrities in various sports competitions: weightlifting, track and field, bowling, etc. It was great seeing Gabe Kaplan (Welcome Back Kotter) pulling a hammy during the 100-yard dash or Joe Frazier nearly drown in the 50-meter swim (he didn’t know how to swim). Let’s do that with the Pro Bowl. Yes, we could see a Pro Bowler actually “bowl.” I would watch that.

Or, let’s just move the Puppy Bowl to the Sunday between the NFL Championship Games and The Super Bowl. I never miss a Puppy Bowl, which features rescue dogs from all over the USA running around a football field, complete with a play-by-play announcing team, and a Puppy Bowl Blimp. The winner even gets the “Lom-bark-i Trophy.” The Puppy Bowl has become a tradition in our house on the day of The Big Game. It deserves it’s own Sunday, which we could call “Puppy Sunday.” It beats watching someone trying to pull Cee Dee Lamb’s flag.

And besides, you’re never going to call in sick the day after The Puppy Bowl…

Until the next visit from the Booth, have a great Pro Bowl party!