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Tobin-Rote-1957-NFL-Championship-GameI was a child of merely seven. I can’t tell you that I KNOW I watched the Lions beat the Bears that fateful day, December 29, 1957, but I KNOW I did.

Of course Lions “fans”, that rarefied animal that looks a bit like this,

indexmay be something that is hard to find anymore. Most, I suspect have given up. Patience is one thing, but fifty-six years?

When I married the Contrarian, he was aware of course that I came from the land of pussy cats. Being a Packer fan, he took pity on me and mine. Whereas he saved his best invectives (and they were some doozies I gotta say) for the Bears and he Vikings, he smiled softly upon the hapless Felines and referred to them as the “little brothers”. He dutifully cheered on their lackluster performances again and again as they attempted to bloody the nose of various teams, and gave a loving pat on the head to me when they were trounced by the Gods, otherwise known as Green Bay.

We were neither of us baseball fans. You may remember that the Detroit Tigers were not quite so hapless, scoring victories in 1968 and in 1984. The last, I celebrated in the very city of Detroit after watching each of the games.

I had been at one time a Detroit Piston fan, and attended a fair number of those games through the years, especially during the Thomas, years, when they repeated to our delight and the streets were full of cheering fans. But upon leaving Detroit, and that team disbanding as all teams must, I lost interest.

I had as well been a  hockey fan, first with the Boston Bruins and that magnificent team under the leadership of Bobby Orr. I had of course seen a number of local RedWing games at the Arenas, but old and new. I had finally come around to enjoying a RedWing game, now and then, especially during the playoffs.

The Contrarian was neither a basketball fan (preferring college hoops) nor a hockey fan, likening a hockey score to the likelihood of spotting a blue footed boobie on the outskirts of Troy during hunting season. Scoring was rare and all that skating back and forth seemed only for the purpose of hurling into another human being at breakneck speed, all of which induced anger and a fist fight.

It took a long time for it to sink in however, that I had committed some terrible sin when it came to Detroit teams by leaving the state. For I did you see, back in 1996, first to Connecticut, then to Iowa and now to New Mexico.  Leave that is. While I have experienced a great deal in living in other parts of the country, places were I learned so much about history and culture from very different perspectives that what I had gown up with, I was plagued it seemed by always landing in states without professional sports teams.

So, I adopted sometimes another, or I ignored the sport more or less. I was a Houston Oiler fan long ago, before being a Texas fan of anything seemed slightly off-putting. I was a Denver fan for a bit. But nothing much settled in, and I was okay with that. I preferred Tennis and Soccer to professional baseball or basketball in any case. All that scandal and money seemed to take the fun from the sport and make it into an “entertainment” spectacle replete with too many characters acting too badly.

So, back to the jinx thing.

Well, even though one has fairly “given” up on being a true fan, doesn’t mean that one never wants to see said sport played ever again. So if there was a place to watch, it did seem it should be at the end of the season when everyone gets excited about who will win the big enchilada.

And that’s when it started happening.

You see, last year, when the Redwings, I lately learned were in the playoffs, we decided to take a look. They were up 3-1 in the series and still at home, a fitting place to win out the fourth game and the divisional championship. So we watched, and they scored and all was well until the third period when the other team scored (who? can’t remember, doesn’t really matter). And then they went into overtime, and they lost. And then they went on and never won another game. And that was that for that season.

And I realized that the MSU Spartans had a very bad habit of losing whenever I watched them. And March Madness never went too well for them either when I watched. Nor for that matter the UCONN Huskies, my second favorite college team. And the most hated team in the entire universe, The FREAKIN’ UNIVERSITY OF CRAP MICHIGAN did seem to win when I watched, which was watched by the way, ONLY to root for the other team. And if you don’t understand that, well I can only say you have never attended a major university that has an intense interstate rivalry that will stay with you in the form of abject hatred for the rest of your very long and otherwise coherent life.

But I figured, hey just a coincidence.

Oh, and I never thought anything of the fact that NMSU our very local university here in Las Cruces, has the WORST teams on the face of mother earth. I mean the AGGIES stink up the entire foothills with their pretense of playing football or basketball, and it really seems doubtful that few of the players know which one they are playing at any given time. As far as I can tell, they have always sucked, so it’s not on me for sure.

Yeah, so last night we watched the Detroit Tigers play the Boston Red Sox, because hey, it seemed like a good thing as the ONLY game I had seen all season, since the season was rapidly ending. So the Tigers won the first game, which is hey, really cool, since they were in Boston, and everyone knows that’s great. So we watch as I said, and low and behold we see another incredible pitching exposition, even though that can be boring as watching the proverbial paint dry. And the Tigers score, and then in the 6th score FOUR more, and they are cruising to victory and the pitcher is relieved to rest, having done his job. Well, before you can say, I DON’T FREAKIN’ BELIEVE IT, in the eighth, the coach which for some idiotic reason is called a manager, can’t manage to find a single solitary reliever who can throw a strike that the other team can’t hit, and after three tries MANAGES them five runs, and the score is tied.

And then in the 9th, there is a single, then a continuation of screwups that make it clear that the mafia fix was in, and they were throwing the game, because NOBODY could play that freakin’ bad so suddenly, and the Bostonians score again and win the game.

So of course it’s really really clear I am a jinx.


And I guess I’m responsible for the Detroit Lions too. Even though, mostly I blame that idiot Ford for owning them. Which is another whole story best left unsaid at this point.

So I wish the Tigers well, but I won’t watch in the hopes that they can snatch victory from those incredibly hairy men. Who told them that it would look really cool to grow scraggly beards anyhow?

new jinx