Sunday, January 24, 2010

Vikings Lose. Again.

I wonder: What did the real Vikings do when they were defeated?

Helen, who comes from Viking stock, says, "A lot of wine drinking and embarrassment. Slinking back home to fight another day. Definitely no excuse-making." Oh, so basically the same thing that the Vikings in purple and gold will do.

I lived in Minnesota for four-and-a-half years, but was never really a Vikings fan until I moved away to Boston in 1995, at which point my chief allegiance shifted from the Dallas Cowboys, who by then were resurgent and really too good for their own good (I am something of a foul-weather fan; plus my Cowboys fandom started in the Tex Schramm era...Jerry Jones is an atrocity).

On a day much like today in late January 1999, Helen and I drove from Burlington, Vermont to Providence, Rhode Island listening to the NFC championship game between the Vikings and the Atlanta Falcons. After picking up my mother-in-law and driving to a movie theater in Seekonk, Massachusetts to see "A Civil Action," I dropped them off at the door, parked, and sat alone in the car in the parking lot listening to the radio as Gary Anderson missed a chip-shot field goal – his first miss all season — that would have won the NFC championship. I stayed in the car long enough to hear the Falcons win the game (I did miss the first bit of the movie, but I had seen it once already).

And, now, they lose again. There will be no opportunity for them to advance to the Super Bowl and win their first one in five tries.

I'm really, really bummed about that. Favre, what were you thinking, forcing a pass at the end of the game when you were in field-goal range?

But, I am genuinely happy for the Saints. Back in 2005, after Hurricane Katrina, I was in Mississippi for three weeks with the Red Cross, tending to a whole lotta displaced Saints fans from New Orleans. They deserve a happy day. Beat the Colts!

(I suppose it is fitting, historically speaking, that the Vikings were defeated by Saints. Saints Patrick, George, Andrew, Olaf, and others all did a pretty good job of converting the Vikings and Viking-descendants that they encountered.)

Image: 878 AD, A fleet of Danish longboats suffers defeat by King Alfred the Great's navy at Swanage in Dorset. The Vikings had been trying to wrest leadership of England from the Anglo-Saxons for two centuries, and continued to do so for years to come. Original Artwork (Photo by Spencer Arnold/Getty Images) Content © 2008 Getty Images  All rights reserved.


Karlissimo del Banco said...

Did you know that Prince wrote a song for the Vikings?? Alas, it didn't help.

C - Log said...

I just listened to it. I think it might have had possibilities, if played before games as a way to enrage the team's blood lust a la that college football coach years ago who used to butcher a calf in the locker room right before big games.

Karlissimo del Banco said...

I remember hearing the Michigan "fighting song" for the first time at a friend's wedding a few years ago (the newly-married couple made its entrance into the ballroom with that song), and my reaction was "meh". Not particularly impressive, nor intimidating. The All Blacks doing their tribal war dance, now, THAT'S intimidating. Michigan fighting song?

C - Log said...

Karlissimo, I hope you will permit me to inform you, my honorable Continental friend, that the correct term is "fight song," not "fighting song."

In addition, I regret to inform you that the Michigan fight song, is pretty darned good, as fight songs go (and if you thought that was "meh," try the U. of Minnesota "fight" song. It's like Perry Como in marching-band form.)

I do agree that the All-Blacks' Maori haka is quite intimidating.

Karlissimo del Banco said...

Yeeeeeeeeeeah, I'm gonna have to...disagree with you on this one. But if sounding like an episode of Glee is being a pretty darned good fight song, then fine, it is.

I once would like to see a team get on the field to the sound of Black Sabbath's "War Pigs", or "Black Sabbath"!

C - Log said...

Wait a minute. This so-called "fight song" that was used at a wedding: Was it a recording of the actual University of Michigan Marching Band? Or some kind of MIDI keyboard-drum-and-bass [crap]? It better not have been played on a church organ.

As for the Sabbath, yeah I guess it could work. Often the closers (ninth-inning relief pitchers) in baseball enter the game from the bullpen to their own theme song. The Yankees' Mariano Rivera comes in to Metallica's "Enter Sandman," and Boston's Jonathan Papelbon's song was "Shipping up to Boston" by the Dropkick Murphys.

Karlissimo del Banco said...

It was the actual U of M marching band.

If the Rohirrim had charged Sauron's army at Minas Tirith to the sound of the U of M Fight Song, we'd all be speaking Orc right now.

Jake Miller said...

Speaking of fight songs:

When Lady Bokeh was in elementary school in our great nation's capitol (I forget which grade) they used to sing Hail to the Redskins instead of the national anthem. When a kid moved into the neighborhood from TX, they beat him up because he was a Cowboys fan, and therefore, as they saw it, a communist.

C - Log said...

Tribalism is fun.

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