That was some ugly-ass football played at Soldier Field on Sunday, and I didn't even see it happen. I was working, and my Walkman wasn't getting good AM reception where I was stationed, so I had to listen to the first half on the FM feed--in Spanish. But even then, I could tell that the Saints-Bears NFC title game was fugly because there was a steady rhythm of crowd cheering, crowd deflating from a bad Rex Grossman throw or a run play that didn't work, followed by the polite clapping after another Robbie Gould field goal. And the Saints managed to rack up almost 400 yards of offense by the 3rd quarter but couldn't put more than 14 points on the board. That's actually hard to do. I was at home watching the Seahawks-Bears game the week before, and I spontaneously yelled out at least 5 times during that game, "This conference sucks!", because the Seahawks should have lost to the Cowboys if not for Tony Romo getting Carrie Underwood's pussy juice on his fingers and letting the ball slip through at the last second, and now they were going toe to toe with the NFC's "best," Da Bears. And I'm sure I would have yelled something about the NFC sucking another 12 times if I had to watch that game Sunday. How Rex Grossman managed to not throw the ball to the other team 8 times like he had done in half the games in the regular season is beyond me. But they did it, and now the town is in a holding pattern for the next two weeks until the big game in Miami on February 4. I already have the day off.
This is actually bringing back fun memories of the Super Bowl Shuffle Bears from 22 years ago, when I was 9 years old. It's not exactly the same because this team has so many holes, it's very hard to imagine them going all the way. I would have never picked this team to make it this far, so this isn't quite as joyous, but it's still cool to live through. Back then, in 1986, we all expected the Super Bowl to be the coronation of one of the great teams ever, yet there was still a bit of nervousness because, being Chicago, we were used to coming close and falling short--the White Sox in '83, the Cubs in '84, and the Bulls were nothing at the time. It made the win over New England so much sweeter because the Bears were holding up Chicago where the other teams had failed. I was trying to save my bag of Soft Batch chocolate chip cookies and 2-liter of Pepsi for the game itself, but they were consumed before the kickoff, if I recall correctly. I fought off the nausea from being nervous and swallowing that much sugar to cheer like crazy throughout the whole slaughter. And I still have the Super Bowl Shuffle on vinyl.
This will be a different story. The Indianapolis Colts are not those New England Patriots, who were lucky to make the Super Bowl. Peyton Manning is not Steve Grogan, nor is he Tony Eason. And most importantly, these Bears are not almost perfect killing machines like those monsters in '86. There's no Fencik in our secondary to make receivers pay for going over the middle. There's no McMahon under center to coolly perform under pressure. And there's no overmatched team on the other side of the field. The Colts, unfortunately, can play. I picked the Colts to win it all before the playoffs began, and I'm sticking to my guns. I'm calling Colts 38, Bears 13.
And I'm guaranteeing that the Bears will fuck me over and win because I'm putting money on the Colts. I'll be watching the whole way with my Soft Batch cookies and Pepsi. Go Bears!