Sunday, December 28, 2008
Making a Pilgrimage to the Football Mecca...
As a sports fan, there are certain stadiums and/or events that you want to get to at some point in your life. In fact, that may be a post that I create here sometime of places and things you REALLY need to see if you're a sports fan...If you are an NFL fan, as I most certainly am, generally at or near the top of that list is Lambeau Field for a Green Bay Packers game. The history, the fact that the whole town is just barely over 100,000 in population yet they support an NFL franchise, the Ice Bowl, the green and yellow uniforms, the fact that it is the only publicly held sports franchise in America, the statue of Vince Lombardi, the fact that football just FEELS more important there...it's an enticing package.
Well, I was able to convince my lovely wife that a pilgrimage to Green Bay, Wisconsin in late December was a good idea. Despite the fact that the high temperature forecast was 27 degrees, and that there was a 50% chance of snow, she willingly piled into the car at 7:15 AM this morning at her mother's house in the Chicago suburbs and trekked the 215 miles north to one of the colder places on earth. Amazingly, there were tickets available on Ticketmaster, which I could NOT believe. Even though the Packers were eliminated from playoff contention some weeks ago, I was always lead to believe that getting a ticket to a Packers game was about as easy as finding a golden ticket to the Wonka factory. Apparently, if the Packers are 5-10 going into the final game of the year and playing a winless team, it's not as difficult.
Wisconsin was very cold, but I've sat through colder Broncos games in Denver, and I was prepared with very warm clothes. Lambeau was awesome, as advertised, (If you have the means, I highly recommend it) and I had the bonus of being able to witness history being made, as the Lions put the finishing touches on their historically awful 0-16 season. All in all, it was a very fun day, and despite the fact that I had to travel in a car for about 7 hours today in order to make it happen, it was still TOTALLY worth it. Check that one off my bucket list!
Only a very understanding and awesome wife would agree to travel with you to a place as cold as Green Bay in December. This is just such a wife. Guys, if you find one like this who is willing to put up with your stupidity...grab on and NEVER let go!
I found something admirable and pitiable about the way this Lions fan was bravely sitting in the bitter cold in Wisconsin with his hard hat on backwards to endure the final humiliation in a winless season. There is loyalty, and then there is this kind of loyalty with pretty much zero upside, it's kind of inspiring and yet also sad.
This just in...the Lions are not very good.
However, Lambeau Field is truly a national treasure.