It’s like the morning after you’ve had way too much to drink; you think you had a fantastic time, but you’re still not sure exactly what happened. Welcome to Super Bowl XLV. The whole week was a strange Faulkneresque stream of consciousness, so I’ll abandon prose and offer a few semi-cogent observations:
1. After producing five different stories on the North Texas Host Committee and the planning process, I could not be more impressed with the people behind this event and their heartfelt dedication to make it awesome. Four solid years of work and 9,998 details planned perfectly. There were only two things beyond their control: the weather and the NFL.
2. I am a lifelong Dallasite and I cannot recall more bitter cold. Snow is fluffy and romantic; this was icy, ripping, razor freeze that served no purpose but to kill enthusiasm to venture out and participate in the 60+ Super Bowl events. Incredibly sad.
3. Overall, I thought the national media was very fair — a rarely made claim. The storm was nationwide, and aside from a few snarky comments about our Texas de-icing methods, everyone understood that it was Dallas’ prom night and we couldn’t help it if our date’s car broke down on the way to the dance. The 10,000 Super Bowl volunteers got high marks for friendliness; the restaurants, hotels, and parties enjoyed great reviews, and the game itself was outstanding. Unless you were a Steelers fan.
4. It was odd how large the figure of Jerry Jones loomed over the entire affair. This is troubling as he is hardly the poster boy one would choose to represent your city. His egomania tarnishes everything it touches. The fact that his greedy ambition to set the attendance record ruined the experience for hundreds of people and became a gigantic black eye for Dallas is a parable for the ages.
5. Whatever awe I once held for the NFL has entirely vanished. What a monolithic cabal of micro-managing control freaks they are. And it was their contractor who screwed up the temporary seating, and their ineptitude on security that led to monstrous pre-game check-in lines. They deserve all the blame being heaped in their direction, and the lawsuits filed this week.
6. My straw poll of 11 respondents reveals that everyone is VERY glad this week is over, and five years is just enough time to get ready for the next Super Bowl … er, “Big Game.”