Quote of the Day:
“When you go to Heaven after you die, tell St. Peter you’re a Saints fan. He’ll say, ‘C’mon in, I don’t care what else you done, you suffered enough.'” –Buddy Diliberto
Over and over the Vikings put the ball on the ground and yet the Saints were unable to fall on it. It was reminiscent of the old football follies clips of the early 1970’s Saints where the fumble gets kicked fifty yards downfield while Saint upon Saint clumsily attempts to fall upon it. Late in the game Brett Favre seemingly had the Vikes in position to win. They didn’t and I thought of how same ol’ Saint-like the inexcusable error was that cost them five on a penalty. Then the ghost of the s.o.s. rose in ironic revenge as Brett, scramblin just like Archie used to threw one to the wrong team, just like Archie used to do. On top of all that a series of official replay reviews went the Saints’ way; and as anyone who roots for a perennial loser knows, the refs are always out to get them. But not tonight.
I recalled today the Falcons and how they made the term “Big Ben” famous by using it to beat the Saints. I thought about how Tampa Bay got its first victory against New Orleans, how the new Cleveland Browns got their first, on a Hail Mary no less. I thought of Nolan Cromwell of the Rams keeping Archie’s best team out of the playoffs in ’79 on a punt return. In just two years they were wearing bags over their heads in shame in the Dome. I remember the Saints drafting Russell Erxleben in the first round, trading away an entire draft for Ricky Williams another year. The Saints have been futility personified for my whole life. Until now, that is; even if they lose the big one, and I’m sure they will–not that I won’t be watching in case I’m wrong understand.
TB was near speechless after calling out to no one that “he made it!” I watched and listened. I wanted to be on the field, on Bourbon, at Sweet’s at least with all my asshole runnin buddies. Instead I just sat and thought about how the phrase “same ol’ Saints” must now be relegated to history. The Saints may never go to the Super Bowl again, but they are going this once. And so maybe we’ll complain that they are playing like the old time Saints, but this championship season forevermore will remain a bright dividing line between the same ol’ Saints and any future failures.
I imagine that somewhere Hap and Buddy D are hearing it from the squirrels. Lord how I wish they were here to put it all in perspective and to remind me of all the black and gold disasters that have merged and faded with the passing of years. Just thinking of the ones I recall off hand sort of overwhelms me. Um, excuse me, I think there’s something in my eye. I better stop now and go wash my face.
“If the Saints ever go to the Super Bowl I’ll march down Bourbon Street in a dress.” Buddy D; as I understand it, Bobby Hebert will keep Buddy D’s promise, in memoriam