Stark: America's Super Bowl reflects us all--boom and bust
We valley folks shared national links with America's most influential cultural event—the Super Bowl.
Our Red River Diversion buddies Doug Burgum and Mark Dayton used the game as their diversion. Both multi-millionaire governors had a place in the land of the loon's gridiron temple. Mark shelled out six grand for his seat while Doug and Mrs. Doug were guests of Xcel Energy to discuss North Dakota power policy over Viking's brats and Diet Coke during time outs. Skoal, Skoal & Coal!
Minnesota nice stalwarts are smarting over smarmy antics of the Philistine Eagles despite their iconic American mascot. Heck, even Philadelphian Benjamin Franklin lobbied against the eagle in favor of the turkey to be our country's symbol. Franklin was an original patriot, but probably cheated less than present day Pats.
Despite Forum stories and letters to the editor about the Eagles' Neanderthal fanatics, responders to In-Forum's poll question "Should Minnesota fans be nice to Eagles fans?" answered with a happy-faced 65 percent. You betcha! The spirits of the amiable ancient Norsemen are smiling down from Valhalla, even though in Viking school many of them majored in plunder and pillage.
Our Philly fave Carson Wentz was both pilloried and protected for tepid defense of hooligans from the City of Brotherly Drunkenness.
Carson's celebrated Christianity was even questioned. Yes, even Jesus was mentioned in an angry letter to The Forum. Jesus, living at the time of the original Roman Forum, also knew all the numerals now used for Super Bowls. What are the odds of that?
Poor at Roman numerals, I can count to XVIII, but have no reason to. I suspect this Super Bowl's LII was either a number or a Korean last name.
It's played and remembered on a Sabbath day and kept wholly... by the NFL. How sacred? Advertisers without official league contracts are like the ancients of the Old Testament who could not utter the name of Jehovah. They must disguise their non-sanctioned ads with the words The Big Game (which is inside code for, well, you know).
Example: Like entrance to a 1920s illegal booze speakeasy with a password, the Moorhead Speak Easy couldn't advertise playing the Super Bowl on the bar's TV without getting busted by the NFL Untouchables.
Our president supports the National Anthem, while not knowing the lyrics, by advocating boycotts because of players kneeling during its play. However, the president took a knee to the traditional pre-game TV interview invitation despite the traditional huge audience. Huge!
Twin Cities residents were irked by (huge!) visitor traffic especially from Philadelphia cream cheese heads hogging local rapid transit.
Minnesotans recalled their beloved Prince played Super Bowl and mourned his absence. Prince is dead; but the Eagles killed the Vikings' dream of a purple reign as champions.
Justin Timberlake exploded without another Janet Jackson breast baring wardrobe malfunction only rivaled by some FM locals outrage over a nursing mother at Fargo's new Chick-Fil-A. America's Super Bowl reflects us all—boom and bust.
Stark is a Forum editorial cartoonist and columnist. He presents illustrated history programs in schools, for professional groups and in other venues. Email Stark at firstname.lastname@example.org