Since I am not a Steelers or Packers fan, from my perspective this football season is fading out with a whimper not a bang. Although I know a little bit about some of the players, and have some favorites (including Aaron Rodgers who grew up in nearby Chico and spent 5 years in Ukiah in elementary school), I have not followed these teams in recent years. That won’t stop me from watching the Super Bowl. I just won’t be on the edge of my seat. But football is football and I continue to be amazed at the life lessons the game teaches me. Today I am celebrating 10 years of conversion to football adoration, this being the 10th Super Bowl I will have watched since I started paying attention to the game.
My favorite football aphorism is “It’s a game of inches.” I love the way players take a leap at the end of a run to secure even the shortest gain because it could and sometimes does make a difference, the way a defensive line can sometimes stop a touchdown even a hair from the goal line, the way a downed player will extend his arm to place the ball as far further down the field as possible because every little bit helps. And sometimes the difference between success and failure is without a doubt measured in those inches won or lost. Football reminds me to put out my best effort, trust in the potential impact of seemingly trivial things, strive to promote the positive in thoughts and gestures both large and small, and believe in miracles.
Oh, Football. I will so miss you. It’s a long way to September.