The first thing I thought after hugging and high fiving all my buddies following the Pats' final interception last night was, "How messed up is it that this could be considered the least exciting of the three Pats Superbowl wins I've watched in the last four years?"
The game was tied through the third quarter, and the Pats (once again) won by a total of three points. I guess if the ball isn't sailing through the uprights as the clock hits zero, a third Superbowl win just doesn't have the same drama.
And then I realized: This is what Yankee fans feel like.
And then I threw up in my mouth a little bit.
But seriously, it was a strange anti-climax to watch my team win again last night. Mainly because we were all expecting it. And granted, we were expecting a win last year too, but the general feeling around the game last year was that the Pats were still the underdog (though how that happened, I have absolutely no idea.) After the interception last night, after the hugs and high fives, after Brady took a knee to end the game, we all just sat there with smiles on our faces.
There was no wild celebration, no accidental destruction of barware or furniture. There wasn't even an adrenaline-filled romp through mobbed downtown streets.
I guess another heart-pounding win and would have been just a little too much for the fans here. I mean, we are ALL still recovering from the Sox victories in a thrilling ALCS and a long awaited World Series. We've run around on the streets of this city in a drunken (but mostly well-behaved) frenzy THREE TIMES in the last four years. It takes a lot out of you. We just didn't have anything left after the game last night to go crazy for a fourth time.
This is the point in the post where all fans still waiting for a championship in baseball of football can say aloud, "fuck you!" And that's fine. But I cringed last night when my buddies and I said aloud that this must be what Yankee fans feel like.
My first instinct is to defend my team -- to say that this team is still a lot like the '96 Yankees (which, it kills me to say, was an admirable group of players), rather than the Yankees of today. There are no true superstars on the team, there are only great players with heart. There are certainly no egos on this Patriots team, and I think most anyone can agree that in this day and age, that is something rare and special.
But I'm not going to pretend that the rest of the football world isn't going to start hating the Pats. That is, if they don't already. They are winners. They are a Dynasty. People hate these kind of teams because they do what others can't. And I guess I just have to accept that.
I didn't sprint through the city last night and I didn't have a drink for the entire game. I didn't have a heart attack as it ended, and I didn't lose my mind when it did. But I sure as hell enjoyed it. The day I don't enjoy something like this, there is something terribly wrong.