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FROM THE VALLEY: It Doesn't Make Any Cents

By Tom Valley

It doesn't make any cents

I'm not going to accept the results of the Super Bowl. I was in one of those

pools with a hundred squares and little did I know before I signed on that it was

all set-up by unscrupulous actors. It was a fix like no one has ever seen before

in the history of sports.

Seriously, at one point, I was winning ... by a lot. And then suddenly, they

told me I lost.

I said “How can that happen? I was way ahead. There's no way I didn't

win!”

Okay, I'm kidding. But now that I've got half of you riled up, sit down, take

off your viking horns and fur-vests. I'm not going to rant about you-know-who-

and-you-know-what. The fact is, I didn't really lose the ability to see clearly, I

didn't lose the ability to accept the truth.

And, obviously, I didn't win that Super Bowl pool. I lost. I get that. It's not

that hard of a concept to grasp. And the Super Bowl will not turn into a

socialist or a fascist enterprise because of it. Period. Ouch! Moving on ...

Speaking of the Super Bowl, what a surreal spectacle. Most of us still can't

get over the visual impact of near-empty stadiums. Especially, during

something like this, the single, most-watched, sporting event in the world.

Never mind the so-called hologram of Vince Lombardi at the opening of this

year's game, they would have been better served showing Rod Serling from

'The Twilight Zone.'

Additionally, the half-time entertainment by The Weekend ... what the hell

was that all about? Was he performing in a well-lit, over-size heating duct?

And what kind of parents, may I ask, would name their son “The”? I don't get

it.

Furthermore, let's not ignore the elephant in the room: the commercials.

They've gotten out of hand. They're starting to upstage the main act. It's like

serving double cheeseburgers as appetizers before your main entree. It's too

busy; too much going on. It diminishes the light on an already big spectacle.

When, may I ask, am I supposed to go the can?

And trust me, I'm not about to DVR commercials anymore than I'd sit and

watch an actual TV show about the Super Bowls' “greatest commercials.” It's

totally against my disdain for those interruptive forces which have long been an

agonizing point of frustration and contempt in my life. I'd be a hypocrite.

Where was I? We all know that despite the NFL's attempt to lessen the

danger involved in the game, it's still the most violent team-sport around. That

controlled mayhem and machismo is the sport's seductive appeal. Without it,

it's a school-yard game of tag. Tag is nice but it's not going to generate the

excitement and lure of fans and the all important big bucks which follow.

So here's the deal (stay with me): networks have a policy of not showing

fans run on the field because “it's dangerous” and don't want to “encourage

copycats.” Dangerous? Yeah, whatever. But isn't being arrested, going to jail

and paying a heavy fine enough of a deterrent to those who think it's a good

idea?

I was watching the game Sunday when someone - who like everyone else

watching, welcomed the three-hour escape from the crap going on in the

country - got carried away by the euphoria of the moment and decided to jump

onto the field and have a moment of fun. And he did it, despite the legal

ramifications involved. (I've since heard there was a story behind his decision.

It doesn't matter.)

So what does the self-righteous network do? They pan their cameras away

from what's happening. They focus on the faces of the players and coaches who

are all watching in total amusement. Amusement. Not shock, not horror ...

amused by the so-deemed “dangerous” prank. But we can't see it. We can't

share in the amusement. Nope. We have to watch the people who are enjoying

it. And then, of course, more commercials. And when that “dangerous” stunt is

over, we can get back to watching the innate ferocity which is, let's face it,

more part than partial of the game of football.

Their (the networks) self imposed policy makes no sense. If the fear of

copycat behavior and danger at a ballgame - when someone in a moment of

harmless frivolity jumps onto the field - is really based on that reason then

why, in respect to recent events, did they eagerly give non-stop, live-action

coverage of the mob of idiots who charged the Capitol building, scaled its

walls, broke down doors and smashed through the chamber's windows in an

effort to “hang Mike Pence” and kill Nancy Pelosi?

Frankly, Scarlett, I'm baffled. Cut to a commercial, please.

And that's the way it looks from the Valley.

Tvalley@Rochester.RR.com

Author Tom Valley and his dog Maggie pondering the mysteries of the Super Bowl

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