It could be worse............
In case you've been off the planet, in a deep sea submersible vehicle or sleeping like Rip Van Winkle I want to tell you the Seattle Seahawks have earned the right to home field advantage in the playoffs for this season.
What does that mean? First it means a stadium full of crazed, over caffeinated, fanatic, obsessive die-hard people screaming at the top of their lungs for nigh on to 60 minutes for the next game the Seahawks play. Should the team prevail, repeat the previous sentence and hope for the same outcome; a victory and a return to the Super Bowl with a chance to avenge the loss suffered at the hands of the dreaded Pittsburgh Steelers in the 2005 Super Bowl (played in Feb 2006).
In some respects having been in the 2005 Super Bowl (played in Feb 2006) doesn't seem so long ago even though it represents 8 years since that appearance. Maybe that's because Seattle was in the play offs last season, also in 2010 and for 5 years in a row from 2003 to 2007 experiencing various degrees of success. Today's victory means 8 out of the last 11 seasons fans in the Pacific Northwet (misspelling intentional) have been able to watch their football team play for bigger stakes.
After all, isn't that why we watch? We endure the regular season in the hopes the team advances to the post season and maybe one day, scales the summit of NFL accomplishment and wins the championship, now symbolized by the Vince Lombardi Trophy.
Why should we care about that? Sports, like movies, TV, live theater and so on is a form of entertainment, an escape if you will, from the rigors, drudgery and sometimes terrible things of life. A way to give our selves a break and dwell for a brief while in a world where the most important issues involve the ability of our chosen team to run or pass the football, to block and tackle.
Now I compare the Seahawk situation to the team of my boyhood, the Detroit Lions. There are not, I'm sad to report, many similarities between Seahawks and the Lions. For example, Seattle has been to the Super Bowl once, coincidentally it was held in Detroit. That is the closest the Lions have ever gotten to the big event having never qualified for the biggest game in the sport.
In that time span I used to show why it didn't seem THAT long since the Super Bowl for Seattle fans, the Detroit team has been to the playoffs once, in 2011. Before that, in the 90's, the Lions went to the playoffs 6 times, advancing past the first game only once and that was in 1991.
That's a long time to remain loyal and make an emotional investment that yields no real return. I'm not sure why this situation exists, the owner of the Lions has the resources needed. They have a new stadium, a world class wide receiver, decent quarterback (on paper anyhow) and a first round draft pick anchoring the defensive line, where games are often won or lost.
Sometimes (actually a lot of times) I listen to Seahawk fans complain, moan, kvetch and whine about some perceived defect with the Seattle team. Then I reflect on the Lions and think ' it could be worse.'
Now get out there and take one for the team!